Best Bait For Brown Trout: What Works Best in Rivers and Streams

When it comes to brown trout, there is no one definitive answer to the question of what bait works best. Anglers who enjoy catching these fish will swear by different baits in different rivers and streams.

However, we have compiled a list of some of the most popular baits for brown trout. Whether you’re fishing for brown trout in a river or a stream, try using one of these baits and see how well it works for you in your particular situation.

Best Bait for Brown Trout Fishing


Minnows are a great live bait for catching big brown trout. Minnows are easy to catch and keep alive, and they are a favorite food of trout. Minnows can be fished live or dead, and they can be used as bait on a variety of lures. They can be caught with a net, trap, or by hand. To keep minnows alive, use a minnow bucket or Livewell. They should be kept in cool, oxygenated water

Minnows can be rigged on a variety of hooks, and they can be fished under a float or weight. When fishing with minnows, keep your bait near the bottom where the trout are feeding. Minnows are a great live bait for big brown trout because they are easy to catch and keep alive, and they are a favorite food of trout. 

Salmon Eggs

Salmon Eggs

Salmon eggs are one of the best baits you can use to catch brown trout. Here’s how to rig them up so you can start catching fish:

1. Start with a salmon egg and thread it onto your fishing line. You can use a small hook or a salmon egg skewer for this.

2. Make sure the salmon egg is secure on the line, then cast it out into the water.

3. Wait for a bite, then reel in your line and enjoy your fresh catch!

Salmon eggs are an excellent bait because they’re high in fat and protein, which trout love to eat. They’re also quite durable, so you don’t have to worry about them falling off the hook or being eaten by smaller fish. Give salmon eggs a try the next time you go trout fishing – you’ll be glad you did!


One of the best ways to catch brown trout is to use worms such as night crawlers as bait. Worms are a favorite food of trout, and they are relatively easy to find and collect. When fishing for trout, it is important to use worms that are fresh and healthy. Dead or dying worms will not be as appealing to trout, and they are less likely to bite.

To ensure that your worms are fresh, keep them in a cool, dark place until you are ready to use them. If you are using live worms, keep them in a well-ventilated container so that they do not suffocate. When it is time to fish, set up your tackle and bait your hook with one or two worms.

If you are using more than one worm, thread them onto the hook so that they are slightly separated. This will give the trout a better chance of biting the hook.

Once your hook is baited, cast your line into a likely spot and wait for a bite. Brown trout are typically found in streams and rivers, so look for areas with deep pools of slow-moving water. Trout tend to be more active in the early morning or late evening hours, so try fishing during these times for best results. With a little patience and some good natural bait like night crawlers or wax worms when ice fishing, you’re sure to catch a brown trout in no time!


Fly fishing for brown trout with insects can be a bit tricky, but it’s definitely possible to catch them using this method. The key is to find the right fly and to use it in the right way. There are a few different types of insects that trout anglers can use, but the most common are mayflies, caddisflies, and stoneflies. Each type of insect has a different life cycle, and trout will key in on different stages of that cycle at different times of the year. 

As a result, it’s important to do your research and figure out which fly will be most effective during the time of year that you’re fishing. Once you’ve figured out which fly to use, the next step is to make sure that you’re using it in the right way. 

Different flies are fished in different ways, so it’s important to read up on how to fish each one effectively. When all is said and done, fly fishing for brown trout with insects can be a very rewarding experience. It might take a bit of effort to get everything right, but it’ll be worth it when you finally land that big fish.

Artificial Baits:

Artificial Baits

Brown trout are a popular game fish and can be caught using a variety of artificial baits. When choosing an artificial bait, it is important to consider the water’s depth and the currents’ speed. In general, brown trout prefer shallower water and slower-moving water columns. However, they can also be found in trout streams and warmer waters.

One of the best ways to catch brown trout is to use artificial baits that mimic their natural prey. An effective lure will make the trout go after it, thinking it’s the trout’s real food source. Flies and soft plastic baits are two lures that work well for brown trout.

Another good option is to use small lures that resemble minnows or other small fish. When fishing for brown trout, keeping your bait near the bottom of the water column is important.

This can be accomplished by using a sinker or weighted line. Brown trout are opportunistic feeders, so keeping your bait in their line of sight is important.

One way to do this is to fish near structures like logs or rocks. Ultimately, using the right artificial bait and fishing in the right location can increase your chances of success when targeting brown trout.

Different Types of Artificial Lures to Help you catch Brown Trout

Many different types of lures can be used for brown trout fishing, and each one has its own unique name. Some of the most popular lures include the Wooly Bugger, the muddler minnow, and the streamer fly. Each of these lures is designed to imitate a different type of food that trout might eat, such as insects or small fish.

The Wooly Bugger, for example, imitates a caterpillar, while the Streamer fly resembles a minnow. Anglers experiment with different types of lures to see what works best in their local conditions. In general, it is important to use a large enough lure to catch a trout’s attention but not so large that it scares them away.

Brightly colored lures are also often effective, as they can help to attract the attention of fish even in murky water. Ultimately, there is no single perfect lure for brown trout fishing; instead, it is important to experiment with different types of lures until you find the ones that work best for you.

How to Fish For Brown Trout in a River


Choosing the right bait is important when fishing for large brown trout in a river. As mentioned above, minnows, worms, insects, and lures can attract brown trout effectively. In addition, it’s important to fish in the right place.

Big browns tend to prefer areas of the large rivers where there is some cover, such as logs or rocks. They also tend to prefer areas with a strong current. So, when choosing a spot to fish for brown trout in a river, look for an area with some cover and a strong current.

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How to Fish for Brown Trout in a Stream

Fishing for brown trout in a shallow water stream can be a bit different than fishing for them in a river. In general, brown trout prefer slower-moving water, so you may want to try fishing in areas of the stream where the water is not moving too quickly.

Additionally, brown trout often feed on insects that live in or near the stream. So, using an insect as bait can be a good choice.

As with rivers, brown trout in streams also tend to prefer areas with some cover. So, when choosing a spot to fish, look for an area of the stream with rocks or logs that can cover the trout.

Can You Catch Brown Trout in Lakes?

Many anglers ask “can you catch brown trout in lakes?” The answer is yes, but it can be difficult. The great lakes, like Lake Michigan, are home to some big trout, and they can be hard to find. The best method is to fish near drop-offs, where the trout will congregate.

Another good strategy and probably the best way to catch brown trout in a lake is to use live bait, like minnows or crayfish. But whichever method you choose, be prepared for a challenge.

Brown trout are notoriously finicky eaters, so it takes patience to land one of these beauties. But when you do, it’ll be all worth it. If live bait doesn’t work when fishing on the lake for trout try using crank baits or other artificial lures. Mix and match until you find a great bait to attract the bigger browns that particular day.

Fishing in Deep Water

Fishing for brown trout in deep water can be an exciting and rewarding experience. The deep, clear water provides a great environment for these fish to thrive, and the warmer summertime water means that they are active.

However, deep water can also be unpredictable and dangerous, so preparing before heading out is important. Ensure you understand the local conditions well and know how to read the water. Once you have found a good spot, fish with confidence and be patient – the rewards will be worth it.

Best Time of Year to Catch Brown Trout

The best time of year to fish for brown trout is from late October through early November. This is also a good time of the year to catch other trout species. This is when the trout are actively feeding in preparation for the winter months. During this time of year, the water temperature is also cooler, which makes the trout more active. 

Another good time to fish for brown trout is in the spring, from late April through early May. This is when the trout are spawning and are often easier to catch. However, it is important to be aware of state and federal fishing regulations before fishing during the spawning season.

Brown Trout Fishing Tips

As an avid angler, I often get asked for fishing tips. When it comes to brown trout fishing, a few key techniques can make a big difference. First, it’s important to fish in areas with plenty of food for the trout. Look for areas with underwater plants and insects, as these will be natural food sources for the fish. 

Second, use the right bait. Live bait is often the best choice for brown trout, as they are attracted to movement. Minnows, worms, and leeches are all good options. Finally, be patient and wait for the right moment to strike.

Brown trout are notoriously finicky eaters, so getting them to bite may take some time. However, if you keep these tips in mind, you’re sure to have success when fishing for the beautiful and tasty brown trout.

What’s The Difference Between Brown Trout and Rainbow Trout?

Brown Trout and Rainbow Trout

I am often asked about the difference between rainbow trout and brown trout. Both are members of the salmon family and are popular game fish.

Rainbow trout are typically smaller than brown trout and have a more streamlined body shape. They are also typically more brightly colored, with a distinctive pink or red stripe running along their sides. 

Brown trout, on the other hand, tend to be larger and more sluggish. Their coloration can vary depending on the environment in which they live, but they typically have a dark brown or olive green hue. When it comes to taste, both rainbow trout and brown trout are considered to be excellent table fare. However, many anglers believe that rainbow trout have a milder flavor.

Conclusion – Best Bait for Brown Trout

As you can see, there is no perfect brown trout bait. It depends on the particular fish you’re trying to catch, and the conditions in which you’re fishing.

Try out different baits and see what works best for you. With a little trial and error, you’ll surely find the perfect bait for brown trout in no time. Good luck!

Do you have a favorite bait for brown trout that we didn’t mention? Let us know in the comments below! Happy trout fishing!

Cory is a content writer-editor and founder of Tackle Box Talk. Favorite Quote: "Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime."

2 thoughts on “Best Bait For Brown Trout: What Works Best in Rivers and Streams”

  1. Do brown trout tend to bite the bait around the head or tail?


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