Few fish find as many devout followers as the northern pike. Whether it's the easiness of hooking because of their aggressive nature, the awesome fighting that takes place once the fish is hooked, or the delicious meat that actually keeps its flavor after freezing, there are many reasons to enjoy going after pike. Northern pike have a mixed reputation, however, depending on area. In states where they are native, they are celebrated game fish providing many hours of enjoyment for anglers chasing down the trophy sized fish. But in states where they're an invasive species, the aggressive and predatory nature of these fish can make them devastating to an ecosystem not designed to handle them.
There are many different techniques for going after northern pike. Which one works best depends on area, season, and the skill of the fisherman involved. One thing that is fairly common is that pike are extremely aggressive which means that a wide array of lures can effectively work on pike. This means that the old bobber and worm is not a good bait at all for catching northern pike. Jigging is another technique which works well for fish like walleye or the occasional bass, but it's not the best lure for northern pike, who really react towards action.
One of the most popular techniques for fishing for pike is using crankbaits. The reason for this is that crankbaits come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes allowing anglers to find one that looks similar to a pike's natural food in the area. These often have little rattles inside to make noise, can be jointed in the middle for extra movement, or even have blinking lights which can all irritate a pike into strinking the lure. These techniques can be used in one of two ways. The first is obvious, and that's casting and reeling in the lure before repeating the entire process again. Another technique, and one that only works if you're on a big enough body of water, is trolling, which is where you cast out, release a decent a mount of line, and then set the reel. This allows you to drag your lure behind the boat as you move with an electric motor and can be a great way to catch pike following your boat to see what the propeller kicks up.
There are other lures which also require additional skills and techniques to use while pike fishing. Aside from crankbaits, two of the most popular are spinners and spoons. These lures work because just like crankbaits, when they're properly used they're going to garner a lot of attention and encourage pike to strike. The key is using them properly, and also knowing where they work. Lakes and rivers, for example, require very different strategies when it comes to locating and catching northern pike. The state, province, or country where the water it located also makes a huge difference as every body water is going to have its own set of rules for fishing.
Having a wide array of crankbaits and a few spinners and spoons to boot will give you a full tackle box and have you fully prepared to chase after those trophy pike.