Trolling For Walleye
Trolling For Walleye: 6 Useful Tips:
Trolling is a key technique for finding the fish. In fact, It’s always recommended that walleye fishermen start off trolling, especially if they are fishing unfamiliar areas. Here are (6) tips for getting the most success on each trolling run:
- Rod Holders – It is important to have your boat fitted out with dependable rod holders. Do not go with the cheap types that basically use Velcro to hold them in place. These can lead to a loss of rod and reel when a really large walleye takes your hook. Go with a rod holder that is permanently attached to your boat. It is also important to have them set up in a pattern that keeps the lines from tangling. Two of the holders should be placed at the front of the boat just behind the prow where the boat width is at its thickest. You also want to have to coming off the rear section of the boat from either side of the motor. This allows the front lines to be outside of the lines from the rear rods.
2. Trolling Lures – Far and away the most productive trolling lure is the spinner.
These attract walleye like nothing else while you’re moving. You can also test hooking some live bait to your spinners. A spinner-live bait combo can work extremely well sometimes.
When it is warm, make sure to get your lures and baits deeper as that’s where walleye like to hang out in the heat. The bottom. To do this just add weight as needed.
I also recommend taking a large variety of crank baits because they more closely mimic the bait fish walleye feed on naturally. (Like shiners.)
3. Live Bait – Always try to use natural live bait found in the area you are fishing. Naturally, live minnows are almost always the best option.
You can also try worms and/or leeches, I have friends that get great results with both of these.
When hooking up minnows for trolling, hook them through the mouth – far enough behind the “lips” so the hook doesn’t come out easily… plus it allows minnows to move naturally through the water while you troll.
4. Trolling Motor – Use one if you can. Outboard motors are just too loud. Plus trolling motors give you the ability to hit good low trolling speeds and adjust from there. This is especially important if you are trolling with live bait.
5. Fishing Line – Use a strong line that is still pretty thin and low visibility, like some of the “super lines” on the market today. I recommend a strength of 10-12 pound test.
6. Planer Boards – Planer boards for trolling walleyes incorporates a blend of traditional long line trolling with precision depth coverage, eliminating vast areas of unproductive water to zero in on sections that hold fish. Planers take lines and lures out to the sides of the boat, allowing anglers to cover a wider trolling swath, simultaneously run multiple baits, and minimize spooking fish in clear or shallow water. They’re particularly effective when walleyes are moving between areas. At other times, fish may be attracted to a general area by structural features like points, humps, islands, or channels, but they suspend when they’re not relating to the structure itself. Any time walleyes roam the basin, down-and-out trolling tactics can score big. Tackle–Rod: 7 1/2- to 8-foot medium-power casting rod with a parabolic action. Reel: Large-capacity bait casting or line-counting reel with a smooth drag. Line: 10-pound-test mono or fused super line. Rigging–In-line planers clamp onto line with one or more release clips. Run your lure behind the boat at a slow trolling speed until it reaches the desired distance, then engage the reel. Add a snap weight with a pinch-on clip 50 feet ahead of the lure for fishing deeper than the lure can run on its own. Next, clamp the planer to the line, selecting a left or right model depending on which side of the boat you want to run your line. Lower the planer into the water with the rod and disengage the reel. A slow trolling speed creates enough drag to pull line off the reel and angle the planer off to the side of the boat. Once the planer reaches the desired distance, engage the reel and set the rod in a rod holder