In fisher and angler communities, the term “bobber” is a well-known one because, despite its simplicity, it refers to a gadget that serves several important purposes. A bobber is a floating device that you attach to your fishing line. By floating on the water, the bobber keeps your hook at a distance from the water surface. Because it floats, the bobber effectively suspends your bait, which you attach to the hook, under the water.
If you are hunting for surface-feeding fish, you might want to attach your bobber closer to the hook. That way, your bait and hook will be suspended near where the fish are more likely to stay. Trout generally feed at the bottom of the stream about 75% of the time. But, that’s as far as their feeding habit is concerned. They can be hanging out anywhere near the bottom, in the midsection of the stream, or right under the surface of the water at any given time.
So that the bait will be kept down to where your trout is most likely to hang out, you must attach a small weight to the line that goes underwater. The weight must be heavy enough to sink the line but not heavy enough to sink the bobber.
Another function that bobbers perform is that of signaling you when your trout is biting your bait. Bobbers came to be known as such because they bob up and down on the water surface when the fish that caught the bait tugs at your fishing line.
A bobber also adds additional weight to your line. When you cast your bait, you will notice the difference between having a bobber attached to your line and not having one attached. The line with a bobber is easier to cast.
So that you can choose the right bobber for trout fishing, you need to consider your bait size, hook size, the depth at which the fish usually hang out, and the visibility of your bobber to both fish and you. Most experienced trout fishers usually recommend light, especially ultra light, fishing gear and bait. Live bait can catch trout fairly well, especially small bait. Avoid spinners and spoons larger than a quarter of an ounce. Try not to use hooks larger than 10.
Bring with you different sizes of bobbers and use the least-sized bobber that can still hold the bait up. You can choose either fixed or sliding bobbers. Because you can easily relocate it along your line, a sliding bobber will come in handy when you need to adjust the distance between bobber and bait so that the bait can reach deeper water.
It is also important that you can easily spot your bobber, especially when you fish in murky water. Bobbers with built-in light are available, as well; you can use them if you fish at night. However, fish can easily see your bobber in clear and shallow water. In that case, you can use bubble bobbers that are made of transparent plastic.
Specialty shops sell a variety of bobbers. It may be a good idea for you to buy bobbers of different sizes, material, colors, and shapes so you can easily pick the best one that would work when you fish for trout.