Fishing Feeder Streams for Muskie

Flats and Feeder Streams

tennessee muskie fishing cory allen in the spread fishing videos

I will begin sharing some of the muskie fishing instruction videos I have produced with In The Spread. This particular fishing video is about fishing feeder creeks and flats adjacent to larger bodies of water. These areas hold giants.

These types of structure situations aren’t standard protocol for many musky anglers, as they are often endemic to southern reservoirs specifically, but harbor numbers of fish and many of the largest muskie in the system throughout the season. The fact that most of these correlate very far and very loosely from shoreline layout often leaves them unnoticed and untapped. I will show you how to identify subtle context cues along the shoreline and your graph that will give you insight into finding these treasure troves lying hidden in plain sight. Often times, they are so small, albeit prominent in contour, that many of the best topography charts and graphs don’t register them, yet they consistently have produced some of the largest fish in my boat over the years.

Enjoy and do not hesitate to contact me about whatever you want to know about fishing.

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Winter River Muskies: It May be Cold as Ice, but the Fish are hot blooded…

Check it and see.

The temps are dropping, both in and out of the water, but the water itself is rising with the flows of rain and snow coursing into the icy veins of as many tributaries of the south, be it Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia, or North Carolina.

Even though metabolism plays a role due to their body temperature being controlled by the ambient environment, the ability to trigger some fish ramps up as the current increases, which means, while I personally feel that most anglers err on the side of fishing too aggressively too often, during these high winter flows an aggro technique should never be ignored. Time to whip out some spastic twitchbaits like H20 Tackle Cranky Nitros, Switchbacks, Cranes, or even venture into spinning tackle land with Rattlin’ Rogues, X-raps, and Berkeley Jukes, Cutters, and Dredgers, or the highly unique Biwaa Divinator series.

But then again, that isn’t always going to be the ticket. It’s pretty easy to check for the ADHD fish sitting ready to pounce out of cover or breaks, but once that doesn’t produce, as in any situation, try going slower, deeper, and often times, smaller.

Micro-machines such as Flicker shad, Berkley Warpig rattletrap,Carolina rigged streamer flies, small soft plastic Swimbaits like the Eastfield Downsizer or the Biwaa sunfish and Divinator series offer a different dimension to most musky anglers’ arsenal of “downsizing”.

Sometimes, though, the inherent physics of a larger bait, such as a Carpenter Customs “Quiet Pill”, a DJ Customs “Sinious Glider” or weighted Ressurector dive-and-rise, or the larger H20 10″ Switchback, Hammerhead, or Ramhead all have effects inherent to their size and shape they offer a finesse to their movements and the hang that gives them their “swag”.

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Roger Watters is a living breathing Aqua-Man with his H20 Lures

It’s not often spoken of this way, but angling really is an art of hydrodynamics: understanding how different shapes with different energy applied to the water column create wakes of different intensities and textures that different species interpret accordingly.

Whiles yes, sight, sound, and scent do play universal roles and also have idiosyncratic value to unique species, such as the olfactory element to many salmonids and of course the catfish family, the true unilateral sense of fish is their ability to feel present and past of what has traversed their realm, and gather uncanny information concerning it prior to ever actually acquiring it in any other sense.

In short, fish don’t have to see, smell, taste, or hear something to not only know exactly where it is, but where it has been.

If you’re not analyzing your choices in lure selection by first and foremost the different textures they allow you to apply to the water column, then you’re missing out on some of the finer and more rewarding points of angling, especially musky angling, both in reaping greater fruits of your labor, and enjoying the process of interacting with the aquatic world itself much more.

While due to the nature of the entities I attach myself to, I enjoy an unparalleled level of liberty to freely roam about the cabin of products and tools available, without any strings attached that might create a biased outlook on my opinion, I have yet to find a line of baits even half as complete, and with even undiscovered gems, as Roger Watters’ H20 Tackle.

In fact his tools have already replaced a large amount of my tackle box simply by realizing he has made analogous baits to other more popular ones that serve the same role, but offer more versatility and to it far better.

We’ll be going in-depth with his current, expanding, and resurrecting product line this year, and showcasing how instead of following hot trends, this guy literally took a handful of body designs, and created a literal smorgasbord of unique baits with simple subtle tweaks to weighting, lip placement, and integration of rubber.

Cory Allen, the Tennessee Valley Muskie Authority


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Winter Muskyland

It’s that time of year again.

When shop is closed up north, and the temps keep dropping, but the beats never stop down south, where the musky fishing just keeps getting hotter.

This is the time of year to bundle up and batten down the hatches for big fish. You may have to fish through some of the smaller more virulent fish, but I’ve gotten pretty good at pricing myself out of that market over the years.

This time of year is when fish are settling into staging areas with the right criteria before staging to spawn, and the devil is in the details when it comes to even the slightest current influence or shift in temperature regime.

But make no mistake, this is the time of year you can encounter the single largest fish of your life in very predictable areas.

For one, never ever EVER leave your lighter tackle setups at home. Now more than ever, a smaller presentation even demanding spinning tackle can be the definitive element between success and failure. We’re talking finesse, be it Flicker shad, X-raps, Biwaa Divinator JR’s, Smithwick Rogues, or even wacky worms (yes, wacky worms) and having the proper combo for raw power and delicate intricacy is essential.

Any good walleye or bass spinning combo with a 20 lb braid upgrade and an American Fishing Wire tied 30 lb steel leader will do the job, but I strongly recommend checking out the Toothtamer line of rods which have some specifically designed musky spinning rods that handle some of the power tools but more of the “micro machines” than you’d possibly imagine without losing crucial rod length for figure-8s or intestinal fortitude for wrestling gorillas out of the mist.

I’ll be doing a solid in-depth review of a handful of the Toothtamer rod series very soon available through In the Spread YouTube and here as well.

On top of all that, I’ll be continuing my love affair with Roger Watter’s amazing line of musky baits that flew even under my radar for years. Trust me, he doesn’t just make the Barbarian and Hardhead. Guy is a polymath of musky lure design and we’ll be working together here on out to not only increase your awareness of these amazing tools, but also design and tweak a few more for the future.

Speaking of which, don’t forget to check out the works of William Carpenter at Carpenter Customs, the mind behind the “Quiet Pill” glider, as we continue to barrage each other with DM’s concerning new design ideas to bring to the table, and trust me, we got two that you ain’t seen before.

I’ll be doing regular blog posts here now guys, as this is my new HQ for all things musky related, southbound and beyond.

Tight lines, y’all.

-Cory Allen, the Tennessee Valley Muskie Authority

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Hello world, from ITS Muskie Fishing!

Welcome to my new site. This will be the home for all my muskie fishing exploits and a great way for you to communicate with me. I outgrew my old site, Tennessee Valley Muskie Authority, and needed a new brand to cover my national and international fishing activities. My love for the trophy muskie waters of eastern Tennessee continues to grow. Nothing could expunge the passion I have for my home state. It is the many other amazing places I continue discover that hold muskellunge that forced my hand to expand my brand coverage. It is with great pleasure that I share the Tennessee fishery and all the other amazing muskellunge waters around the world. My desire is to grow my knowledge base and share what I learn along the wat. That is why I came up with ITS Muskie Fishing.

Many of your know I am also an instructor and partner with ITS

So, I will also be sharing the sport fishing instructional material that we distribute through ITS.

-Cory Allen, the Tennessee Valley Muskie Authority

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