Best Trout Spinners – Our Full Guide

There's no doubt about it using a static bait or worm can work really well for trout and is one of the oldest methods. But if you are feeling more proactive and want to cover more water or are at a new venue then trout spinners can be hard to beat.

Trout spinners

What are the best trout spinners?
The best trout spinners are the ones that are perfectly matched to the environment in which they will be used. If you would like to know more then read on and hopefully we can help you select the best trout lure for you needs. If we could only choose five spinners for trout then out top picks would be the following classics.

Top 5 Spinners for trout

Name

Blade Type

Best Use

Tackle

Panther Martin

Inline

All venues

All

Mepps Aglia

French

All venues

Light

Rooster Tails

French

Rivers and streams

All

Blue Fox Vibrax

French

All venues

All

Joe's Flies Short Striker

French

Rivers and streams

Light

Trout spinners are pretty simple, a blade(convex) spins around a center shaft which is either an arrangement of beads or a solid body, the hooks can be single or treble and some can have feathers wound onto them. The spinning of the blade causes a flash and vibration through the water which can appeal to the trouts predatory nature causing them to strike hard. The size and color of the trout spinner will have the largest effect on how well it fishes for you.

They're one of the most used lures for trout fishing and are so versatile they can be effective year round whether you are trolling for trout on big open water or fishing for trout on small streams with light tackle.

Fishing a spinning lure is pretty simple just retrieving it creates the action that attracts the trout. For this reason spinning for trout can be one of the best ways to introduce children to trout fishing once the basics of casting are learned. That's one of the beauties of trout spinners the are extremely versatile and as such have a very low barrier to entry, that being said there is a lot more to learn if you want to master the art of lure fishing for trout.

Selecting a Spinner

The main factors when selecting a spinner is what type of water you will be fishing lake/river which will effect the depth and what the weather is like, a general rule of thumb is if it is bright out then a golden blade is probably best and if it's dull and overcast then a silver blade may be more suitable.

Blade Types

The blade is what gives a trout spinner lure it's main attraction characteristics. The vibrations and flash generated by the blade can act as a very powerful stimulant for the trout to strike. There are at least fifteen types of blades multiple different textures and a seemingly endless possible number of colors and patterns on the blades. There are three main types of blades found on spinners for trout.

Inline

Inline blades( or shaft-in-blades) are mostly associated with the Panther Martin, Mepps however do make a spinning lure with this blade design. On the smaller sized inline bladed spinners the blade does run a little closer to the body giving a smaller looking body. On deeper or faster water then the larger sized inline blade will make the lure fish relatively deeper in the water. When fishing something like a Panther Martin it will generally work best on larger waters. Trolling for trout using such a spinner can be very effective and can made run deeper by using a down-rigger or even a lead core line. If fishing large rivers a Panther Martin can be a great way to cover large sections of water. It is quite effective if fished across deep holes in the bottom and the aggressive action of the blade can really tempt trout out of these hiding places. 

French

Traditionally French blades have a raised dome and flat edges they are probably the most common type of blade found on spinners. They have a medium rotation speed so this will make them fairly versatile. They can be made to fish deep and shallow and a lot of anglers will keep quite a collection of these types of lures with the inline and swing making up the minority.

Swing

Swing blades are generally longer and spin close to the body, which gives the spinner a much smaller profile. If you are looking to fish shallow water and imitate small bait fish or minnow that the trout are known to feed on then a swing blade may just be the most suitable. You can fish these a little slower near the surface as they tend to stay high in the water and can be quit effective when fishing on streams and rivers.

Hook Types

Generally spinning lures will come with treble hook as standard. If you are operating in a catch and release area you can however find some spinning lures with single hooks. Using a pliers you can flatten out the barb on the hook which will create less damage to the trouts mouth, this may mean a reduced landing rate as it would be easier for the trout to shake the hook out of it's mouth.
Hooks can also come with a hackle dressing which can help imitate the tail of a bait-fish, the Rooster tail is probably the most famous example of this type of trout lure. Rooster tails can be particularly effective in shallow water as the trout can see the realistic outline of lure where the tail looks very life like.

Rooster tail lure

Techniques for Fishing Trout Spinners

Casting is probably the most preferred method of fishing a trout spinning lure. When being retrieved the lure creates all of the action itself, you could actually just retrieve the lure at a constant speed. The speed can be used to control the depth at which you are fishing, the faster the retrieve rates then generally the higher in the water the lure will run. You can also vary the retrieval rate to simulate the more natural movement of a minnow. When varying the retrieval rate you can also jerk the tip of the rod to simulate the natural darting of small fish.

It's not uncommon to see trout follow a lure in clear shallow water and then simply turn it's head away. In these circumstances a constant retrieval speed is not going to work and you will need to entice the trout by jerking and varying the lure speed. By varying the speed and jerking the lure may help to "trigger" a strike out of the trout. But you need to be careful not to effect the action of the blade so much that it actually stops spinning. You can also change the action of the blade by bending it slightly, this must be done with caution as it may be impossible to bend it back to it's exact original shape.