Any lure that can be fished near the bottom is a good choice for catching northern pikeminnow. Lipless crank baits containing rattles or diving crank baits with big lips are the most popular. Because northern pikeminnow are color-specific, try lures with blue, green, or black backs to find what works best.
How to Catch Them: From shore, cast upstream or straight out. When fishing from a boat, anchor and cast, or drift and cast. If you’re using a sinking lure, count down to reach the proper depth. When using diving plugs, choose one that will at least dive close to the bottom. Actually bouncing the lip on the bottom is the most effective, because it is so easy to lose lures this way, it’s not highly recommended. Vary retrieval speeds to find what triggers the most strikes.
To troll, use the same techniques and fish the same structure as you would for walleye. Use a lure that dives close to the bottom. Look for bars or ridges in the river bottom, and ledges by islands. Troll at 2-3 miles per hour and downstream, but experiment to find what works best for a particular location or day. Many anglers have better results with higher speeds and sometimes with trolling upstream.
How to Tie an Egg Loop Knot: