The Best Bait For Trout – Catch Big Ones

If you have been fishing for any length of time, then chances are you are always on the lookout for a new challenge. Well, fishing for trout will always fit the bill, simply because they are one of the smarter breeds of fish. Of course, when it comes to angling for any type of fish, there is always the age-old debate: which is better, live bait or lures? Of course, if you have had success with the latter on other species of fish, you might be tempted to try lures with trout as well. In the case of trout, that would often be a mistake on your part.

First of all, trout have a tendency to thoroughly feel out any of their food before they totally go for it. Once they realize that there isn’t any “there” there, so to speak, they will definitely pass on your lure.

Secondly, lures are usually more expensive than live bait. Third, lures can get snagged on underwater structures such as moss, seaweed, reeds, and the like. Finally, in colder waters, the lure just simply won’t be as effective as live bait.

So, why is live bait best for catching trout? One word: smell. That’s right. Trout are very adept at using their sense of smell to find your live bait. This is why it is advantageous for you to use live bait for fishing for your trout; even in muddy waters, you have a better chance at landing a trout than you would with a lure. Keep reading to get several ideas of what live bait to use.

Of course, now that we have established that you should use live bait, you are probably what kind of live bait you should consider. Here are some options for you to take a look at: But firstly, if live bait is not an option, check out my favorite dough bait and lures for catching trout HERE on my Fishing resources page.

The Best Bait For Trout - Catch Big Ones


I usually buy worms at WalMart Sporting goods department. they have a refrigerator.

Perhaps one of the best natural bait that you can use for trout fishing would have to be worms. Nightcrawlers, reddish wigglers, garden worms – it really doesn’t matter what you call them.

Simply put, a worm to a trout is very much like putting a big, juicy steak in front of a human being. Much like some of us at our favorite steakhouse, a worm is simply too much for a trout to resist. Moreover, there are a lot of advantages to using traditional worms to catch your trout.

First of all, worms are easy to obtain. Ask any fisherman, and they will tell you that you usually only have to go to your nearest convenience store to find them. Generally, a bait worm will usually only run about $35-$40 per pound, which in all honesty is less than a dinner out for the family. Moreover, you can also buy many of these bait worms from online outlets such as eBay, Amazon, and PetsMart.

Additionally, bait worms are easy to store. If you only have a few to keep, you can simply place them in the refrigerator. You should put them in a decent box and then occasionally place some water droplets for moisture and some coffee grounds for food.

Alternately, if you have a larger amount of worms, you could put them in a box outside and they might multiply for you, which will save you money on bait in the long run.

Of course, once you place your worm on your hook, it might be wise to give it a little shake if the water is muddy. However, as mentioned before, this is really up to personal preference. Again, it isn’t necessary to do this because the fish will often smell the worm as well.

Naturally, before you get to this point you need to understand the proper placement of your bait worm. For starters, you should designate a hook from as high as number ten to as low as number six so that the fish will be able to capture the bait.

These types of hooks are designated as bait-holder hooks, meaning that they latch onto the worm as firmly as possible. Obviously, you want the worm to stay on the hook. Make sure that the worm is properly threaded on the hook with dangling ends, and you should have plenty of success with your trout fishing.

Wax Worms

Wax worms are an extremely underrated item to have in your trout bait arsenal. Unfortunately, there isn’t much literature on this type of trout bait, but that is a shame simply because there are all kinds of trout enthusiasts who swear by this bait. Why is this little insect one of the best trout enticements on the market today? There are many reasons why, but first you have to understand just what a wax worm is.

The bait supply company will usually construct the wax worm trout enticement by fashioning it through a slip-sinker rig similar to one for nightcrawlers. Then, you will need to impale about four of these wax worms on the midsection of a hook, making sure that the end parts of the wax worms continue to wiggle so as to entice the trout.

You will often want to add a miniature marshmallow to this trout confection, squishing just above the bait to make it an irresistible treat for your would-be trout catch. Additionally, the marshmallow will keep your wax worm bait afloat so that it stays off the bottom of the river.

There is no question that wax worms are starting to develop a loyal fan base among fishing hobbyists looking for the most effective trout bait. Part of the reason for this is not only because this bait is highly underrated, but because wax worm bait presents a whole host of advantages. Indeed, traditional live bait and artificial lures just cannot compete against this method. Here are some reasons why:

Just the Right Color

Wax worms have an appealing bright white color, and that makes them much easier for the trout to spot than other bait choices. Along these same lines, the wax worms are a great option for those who are fishing in muddy, murky, or swampy water because they will readily stand out against the dark mud.

A Great Anatomy

The wax worms have a unique anatomy that is composed of much more fatty tissue than regular convenience store lake worms. This means that there is an increased likelihood that a trout will bite your rod. Like other creatures, they too crave something different from time to time, so you can definitely use that to your advantage!

A Long Storage and Life Expectancy

One of the best things about wax moth larva is that they can last up to a month as long as they are properly cared for. Moreover, they do not require any type of feeding like other typical trout bait options do. You can easily help this bait reach their full potential simply by keeping them cool. This is definitely a bait that doesn’t care for the heat. Finally, you also should take particular care to wipe away any moisture they might be encountering while they are in storage.

As long as you are diligent in taking care of this type of bait, they will definitely reward you when you are on the lake. This bait is not only fantastic at helping you catch trout, but also salmon, panfish, and bluegills.

Crickets and Grasshoppers

Of course, another type of bait you could try in order to increase your trout-catching prowess would be either grasshoppers or crickets. First of all, let’s look at grasshoppers. They are a venerable treat for most trout simply because they possess a lot of protein that the fish needs in their diet. Grasshoppers are a river-dwelling land insect that will simply be irresistible to a trout. One of the best times to use a grasshopper as trout bait would have to be in late summer, simply because that is when the grasshoppers are reaching their prime growth development. Additionally, one of the best advantages to using grasshoppers as bait is that the ones you simply catch by the river are every bit as good as the ones you purchase at a bait shop.

Grasshoppers are one of the most appealing for trouts out there on the market today. If you are going to use live grasshoppers for bait, the best way to do it would be to thread it on split shot ring through a small hook and then ever-so-slightly submerge it in the river water. If you “drown” the grasshopper in this manner, you will have a much better shot at catching some prime trout. Also, don’t be afraid to experiment with different sizes of grasshoppers. Don’t be surprised if you have better success with a mid-sized grasshopper than with one of the largest ones.

Finally, grasshoppers (also called “hoppers” in fisherman lingo) is a great way to help the beginning trout sportsman. As long as you are in the right spot, fishing with a grasshopper will almost guarantee you to get a few bites from the fish.


Of course, even without grasshoppers, crickets are a related insect that you can try as well. Crickets are good because they are attractive to trout all summer long and not just part of it like their grasshopper counterparts. Additionally, crickets have the ability to float on the water for a slightly longer period of time than grasshoppers.

Unfortunately, one of the reasons that many anglers overlook crickets would be because they can be difficult to bait on the hook. Although one of the most common ways to bait a cricket on a hook would be through piercing the skin of the cricket, this will often put a hole in the exoskeleton and paralyze the cricket. If you are going to bait your cricket this way, it is best if you have a large supply of them because they will not live long and trout respond far better to live bait.

Another way to bait a cricket on a trout hook would be to loop your cricket around the bait thread. However, you have to be very precise, otherwise, you will either crush the cricket or ultimately spook the trout too much.

Nymphs and Other Types of Larvae

Another type of live bait that is great to use would be water nymphs and any other type of aquatic larvae. This is because these types of insects are very much a staple in the trout’s diet throughout their life cycle. They love to munch on them simply because they are a necessary part of a healthy trout’s diet.

One way to catch these larvae would be to employ the use of a small mesh dip net or wire screen and hold it downstream. You should work on turning over rocks and rub your hands across the bottom of the rocks.

This will dislodge any larvae and nymphs you might find and they will be mildly swept across the current and into the net. Once you pick them off, you should quickly store them in a designated container that has some wet vegetation.

Of course, you would do well to understand the various types of larvae bait out there. First of all, there is the hellgrammite larvae; these are centipede-shaped bugs that live under the rocks found in clear streams.

Once you get ready to use them for bait, you should place your hook just under their collar just below their head, but do be aware they might try to fight back with their pincers.

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Caddisfly larvae

Another option would be Caddisfly larvae; this bait is often also called case worms or stick baits. These small creatures are actually very resourceful, often building a refuge of sand, pebbles, or plant fragments in order to protect their fragile worm-like body. You can often find these insects along the riverbank, and many anglers will usually remove their casing before casting it out into the water. However, hungry trout have been known to eat them even with the case attached. You should use either a 12 or 14 hook to attach them.

There are also several types of fly larvae that you should give a shot. For example, stonefly and mayfly larvae both make excellent trout bait simply because they are a fairly tough option that will last a long time on the hook. You should look for them in a cool stream environment and rest assured you collect them just as you would any other bait.

Dragonfly and Mayfly

Finally, dragonfly and mayfly bait is a solid option that you can easily find in stream backwaters. They often will make their abode in a large leaf pile or some debris. Use a dip net or seine net to collect them, making sure that you store them in a container with leaves or moss.

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