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zzammon

How to Walleye fish small rivers??

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zzammon

I have not targeted river walleyes before. This weekend I am targeting them in a smaller river which feeds into the Minnesota River outside the Mankato area. I plan on doing lots of jigging with nightcrawlers but I also have access to some nice bullheads. How should I present the bullheads? What size bullhead? Should I try a scaled down version of catfishing? Thanks.

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DTro

River fishing is all about flow, clarity, and current. The bite will change daily based on those 3 factors. My experience is that for walleyes you want to find any clearer water you can and a fair amount of current (compared to the average river flow) and some sort of bottom structure change (transition area).

I’m guessing you are probably referring to the Blue Earth river. It’s a great spot for walleyes, but with the recent rains and rising water, you might find some tough fishing.

A good rule of thumb is that with rising water you fish shallower. Try pitching 1/4-3/8 oz jigs tipped with a twister or minnow to any spot along shore that has something breaking up the current (rock point, boulder, brush pile, etc.) With rising water, the fish can be as shallow as a 1 or 2 ft. Sometimes when the river floods you can find them tucked up in the willows too.

You might read about us catfishermen catching big walleyes on bullheads, and this can be a decent tactic but if I was out there targeting eyes I would use a more active/aggressive approach at least until I found a fish or two, then I might try some sort of bottim rig.

This weekend though, the best advice can probably pass on is to look for feeder creeks and think shallow.

Good Luck

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Gordie

DTro pretty much nailed it.

I would also take along some fathead minnows or even some smaller creek chubs for bait while night crawlers will work for eyes you will more likely fight most every other rough fish in the area.. which is not a bad way to spend the day IMO fisghting fish on light gear.

Being that the river was so low and if you had a chance to be on the river it and paid attention to what the structure may have looked like such as points, wing dams, gravel bars, sand bars and all the other little features that stand out as under water structure your already have a mental map of some of the go to places. Find those places again and vertical jig, pitch jigs,and bottom bouncer set ups can work awsome along these areas.

Don't get furstrated because you can catch anything right away keep trying and dont befraid to try really shallow and keep attention to where the bait fish is.

Good Luck

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zzammon

Thanks guys. I am looking at the Le Sueur River, which is a feeder river to the Blue Earth. I think I have some nices holes and bends picked out along with a small creek. There were some good looking spots last fall when the water was down. Do you think small 1-2" bullheads could take the place of fatheads and creekchubs on 1/8 oz jigs?

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DTro

Yes

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TruthWalleyes

There are some dandy spots on the leSueur. I'd like to get my canoe on there again this spring for a little fishing. Maybe float the cobb first - that should be putting up some nice rapids after the rains.

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Comit 2

for the Le Sueur River I would look for areas where the current breaks as in where the current separates with a sunken island between the two. work the channel with less current and the areas where they come together. As the others said don't over look the 1-2' depths. You might even try to float a jig under a bobber along the current seams.

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zzammon

I didn't think of the bobber idea, maybe if I can find an eddie to float it in, or if the current is real slow in an area. I would think presentation should be real slow this time of year, whatever the meathod?

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harvey lee

Most of my searching for eyes on the river is with a jig and minnow.

Once I have found them, I will use a crawler harness and a crawler and cast it to the breaks or on top of a sandbar. yes, one will catch some channels but I also get plenty of eyes. The channels are fun action when the eye bite is slow too.

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Comit 2

Quote:
I didn't think of the bobber idea, maybe if I can find an eddie to float it in, or if the current is real slow in an area. I would think presentation should be real slow this time of year, whatever the meathod?

Use a light jig and a few split shot to get it down. let the jig tick the bottom (the reason for the small jig) as it drifts along the seam. Watch for it to stop. Sometimes it's a rock sometimes it will be a fish. After a few drifts you will know where the rocks are! Have one rod set up for jigging and one set up with a float. I find that floating the seams keeps the bait in the strike zone for a much longer time. Use a long rod like a Steelhead rod so you can keep you line up out of the currant. This is a Steelhead fishing method.

The Le Sueur river was quite low 4 weeks ago so it may take some time for them to move up the river.

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BEEFEATER
Thanks guys. I am looking at the Le Sueur River, which is a feeder river to the Blue Earth. I think I have some nices holes and bends picked out along with a small creek. There were some good looking spots last fall when the water was down. Do you think small 1-2" bullheads could take the place of fatheads and creekchubs on 1/8 oz jigs?
1 ta 2 inch bullheads will out fish anything on that kind of river. Including the standerd fathead minnow or twister tail. GARUNTEED. bigger bullheads prouduce larger fish (usually by chance) but prolly not in that smaller river. Get the smallest bullheads ya can yer hands on. Started doing this years and years ago and never paid for fatheads again and my succsess tripled.

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BrandonN

I am quite a bit north of you guys but I like catching my walleyes on leeches in the brush piles or sinking a frog on a jig when the frogs start really coming out

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Gordie

Brandon you playing on the Rum River with those frogs?

I know the pike are smacking the spinner baits right now..

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tunrevir

Shallow rivers, 3-4 inch twister tails and shad bodied baits the same size are great search baits. I like to add the clothepin spinner to them, wade and work the edges and holes. You will catch pike, bass and walleyes and even have a shot at skis if they are in there. Wading is a great asset to fishing small rivers because you will often bypass fish holding areas to quickly to fish them effectively from a canoe. The added bonus is that you also find out what the bottom content is and the depth changes when wading. I rarely fish live bait this time of year on small rivers as the fish tend to be aggressive. Small countdown raps are also nice for long distance casting but they are spendy if you start busting a few off on snags.

Tunrevir~

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DARK30

Exactly.

Wading and casting tails or cranks is by far my favorite way to fish. Not all small creeks and rivers are easy to wade tho. Finding a good spot can be a challenge but you know there won't be any boats to deal with...and much more quiet.

Get the deep woods off ready!

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BrandonN

Yep Rum and Snake

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