How to Fish With Minnows

How to Fish With Minnows
Minnows make excellent live bait for many species of fish. Largemouth and smallmouth bass as well as crappie, pike, pickerel and trout can be caught using minnows. There is a correct way to hook minnows when using them as bait; they can be presented to fish year round in different ways.


Difficulty: Moderately Challenging

Things You’ll Need:
  • Minnows Bait buckets Fishing rod and reel No. 4 snelled hooks Basla fishing floats Ice fishing rod and reels
  • Minnows
  • Bait buckets
  • Fishing rod and reel
  • No. 4 snelled hooks
  • Basla fishing floats
  • Ice fishing rod and reels
Step 1
Use a bait bucket to transport your minnows from the bait shop to where you are fishing. Ice fishermen and warm weather anglers both use the same type of bucket. Purchase these buckets at sporting goods stores or at bait and tackle shops.
Step 2
Employ a fishing float to present a minnow at a specific depth in the water. Attach one to your fishing line above your hook. Use the more sensitive thin balsa fishing float rather than a round red and white plastic bobber.
Step 3
Hook the minnow onto a No. 4 four snelled hook. Hold the minnow by its front half with your fingers and thumb and poke the point of the hook through the soft area between its tail and the fin on its back.
Step 4
Cast the rig out into calm waters over structures such as brush, logs or tree roots that extend into the water, and submerged timber. Watch the fishing float for any indication of a bite. Pull back with force on the fishing rod to set the hook when the float disappears below the surface or if the float moves quickly in one direction.
Step 5
For ice fishing, you can fish with minnows through holes drilled in the ice. Rig your ice fishing poles with braided ice fishing line and a No. 4 hook. Pierce the minnow either though both lips or behind the dorsal fin. Attach a split shot close to the hook in an effort to keep the minnow down under the ice and not swimming just beneath it. Lower the minnow down the hole. Move it up and down methodically and slowly to attract fish.

Keep Me Informed

Weekly newsletters, announcements and offers from to your inbox.

Sign me up!

We HATE spam and promise to keep your email addresses safe and secure.