All serious muskie anglers need to know how to do the figure-8
A social media friend, Michael, was scratching his head recently after fishing on Northwestern Ontario’s Eagle Lake for the very first time. His message to me, as he headed home to the U.S., read in part: “One day we raised 12 good ones. Thursday we had follows from two knee-shaking giants. Man, how do you see 12 muskies and not get a bite?”
The truth of the matter is, when I first started muskie fishing seriously, more than 50 years ago now, I caught at least 80 per cent of the fish during the retrieve. I hooked the remaining 20 per cent on a figure-8 move after spotting the fish trailing behind my lure.
On many lakes today, you can just about spin around those numbers, such is the impact of increased fishing pressure. And then add to that, the fact that on many of our best muskie waters, the biggest fish have been caught and released at least once, and often more, during their mid-30 year lifespan. So, it is imperative to know how to execute a figure-8 properly when you see the fish of a lifetime locked onto your lure as you bring it alongside the boat. And you need to practise the steps repeatedly when you’re out on the water, even if you’re not seeing fish, so the muscle memory and execution become second nature.
Click on the video link below and we’ll show you how we turn the lookers into hooked fish.