Here's a tip to increase your chances of hooking up with a musky that follows your bait to boatside. It so fundamentally simple I was embarrassed that I didn't think of this it years ago. It was taught to me by musky master Gord Pyzer, on a trip to Lake of the Woods in 2010.
Gord and I were working some prime looking rock structure on the Woods when a fish drew a bead on my bucktail. The waters around Kenora are gin clear and I saw the fish tracking my bait a good 40 feet from the boat. While she wasn't one of LOTW's legendary giants, it'll be a snowy day in July when I turn my nose up at a 45 inch musky.
At boatside, I started a series of big circles slightly hanging the bucktail at the top of every turn, then speeding up the bait on the straightaways. And Gord started the same manoeuvre with his glide bait! Both of us were working the same fish!
I'm convinced we didn't hook that fish because it realized who she was dealing with (not me!) and figured that her odds of not getting a yap full of trebles were much better if she put a lot of distance between herself and a guy who's caught more muskies than 99 percent of other musky anglers.
But, what a great strategy! As Gord told me when I quizzed him afterwards about doubling up on a follower, two baits are better than one. A fish may be curious enough to check out one presentation but will be triggered by another. And then, Gord threw in something like the following. "Wally, it doesn't happen very often at all but every once in a while, there are two fish even though we only see one. Once in a blue moon, this tactic will produce a double header at boatside!"
Having both anglers working a follower is now standard operating procedure in my boat. And, I'm thinking quite seriously of carrying a defibilator on board for the "blue moon" day when my partner and I hook up on twin giants. The human heart can only take so much excitement!!