The rooster’s tail, named for its famous colorful tail that hides the hooks, is a great lure to have in your tackle box if you’re fishing for river trout. It has been around since the 1950s and has always been an excellent producer.
Rooster tails come in over seventy different colors, as well as various metallic finishes. There are several fluorescent colors in addition to many color patterns that mimic the natural food of trout in both rivers and lakes.
Rooster tails are available with brass, silver or painted leaves. The color of the blade will sometimes be the difference between fishing or not fishing. Some days, a silver leaf will be the true producer; another day or even a different time on the same day, only a brass or painted sheet will work. As with other types of fishing, be flexible and be prepared; Try different colors of blades until you find what works.
The rooster’s tail is equally effective if you are fishing for river trout from the shore or from a boat. From the shore, it launches upstream into the current. Fish often pick up the lure as it travels downstream. Keep the tip of the rod up and straight so you can tell if the lure is stopping, which could mean a trout has taken the lure to its mouth. Do not pull, lift the tip of the rod and then place the hook if you feel a fish. As the rooster tail resumes its drift downstream, slowly lift the tip of the rod and give it a slight tug. This spins the blade. The roulette wheel will then skim the bottom of the drift, as you take it back to the bank where you are standing. Most of the blows will occur when the Rooster’s Tail makes this movement through the current.
If you are fishing for trout in the river in a boat, you will want to stay close enough to cast against the shore rooster fish. Be prepared for a quick attack, as the splash and flash will often cause a trout to attack your lure right after it hits the water. You can also launch into the back of a drifting boat and troll Rooster Tail behind you. Helps give the reed a slight tug to make the blade turn.
Finding the correct depth where the fish feed is crucial when trolling with a rooster’s tail. Because the body of the rooster tail is already heavy, it will sink on its own and adding weight may not be necessary when the fish are shallow.
Start counting as soon as the lure begins to sink; If the lure bottoms out on the count of ten, on the next cast start to wobble on the count of nine. On the next launch, start recovery at the count of eight and so on. By doing this, all levels of the lake are covered.
When you catch a fish, remember the count at which its recovery began. You will probably be able to catch several more fish at the same depth. Always give your rod a quick jerk to get the blade to start spinning. Also be sure to “work the rod”, that is, move it back and forth or up and down, as this will create the attractive and lively action of the hackle tail.