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Dhenry

Saturday nightt report

19 posts in this topic

Went up Sat. night and fished from 6-2. The weather ended up being great as the wind was fairly calm in the bays we were fishing. Water temps were approx. 45, but the color of choice for the fish was completely different for our boat than it was on Thursday. Clown, and purple perch were our hot baits in size #12's. When it slowed, I tried #10's with no response. The depth was inside weed edges and the speed was a little slower with most of our fish being caught at 1.3 mph or less. Also had a few more light biters or smackers than we had had Thursday. The end of the night total was approx. 24 walleyes and three northerns. The largest was 28" followed by a couple in the 26" range. Their are a lot of fish in the 17"-23" range. I saw Mykal and the water and got a short report from him yesterday and look forward to hearing how he did last night.

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My uncle and myself headed out on friday night. Hit the water around 6, and fished until 2am. We started working the weedline, inside and out, (between 8 & 11 fow.) and landed a nice 36" Pike within minutes of wetting the line. Our first 'eye came around 9:30, nice 24-1/2". Our second came about 30 sec. later, a 22-1/4". Both on #12 HJ - Firetiger. And we thougth we were on them. Turns out we did not land another fish in that area. Around midnight we moved shallower, 5-6 fow, and immediatly started cathing fish. Finished the night with 2 for the table and 3 that were 27" to 27-3/4". In all was a good trip, as it was my uncles first night trip to the big pond, and he was able to land our 3 biggest fish.

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"D" . Clown on a new moon?? Goes to show you that any color can go at any time. Sat night fished the NW weeds. HJ #12's and Rouges took all our fish. Tenessee Shad, Orange Craw, to name a couple. White bellied baits took our fish until about 7:30pm then it was all dark colors for us like oranges and blacks. We did about the same for numbers, over 20 something and a couple Pike. Average size was 23-26.5 with a couple going 21.5 and 18. Most were very plump. Also picked up one Super plump 24.5 on Garrison Reef. Nothing at 27 or bigger though. Way to go on the 28 "D"!

Sunday night stiff NW winds and SNOW kept us from venturing to any of our best big fish rock spot so we stayed in the weeds to hopefully get a few big ones and pluck a few for the table. Boat traffic was non existant, it was surreal out there man. We picked up 16 with a couple Pike, but what was most noticable was the slots decided to show up. We caught a few 24-26 but most were 16-21. Also we experienced a bit of a short bite with many coming undone or just bumping the baits. We slowed down to .9 to 1.2 and it paid off. Again white bellied #12 HJ's early and dark colors after 7:30pm. Called it a night around 1:30am. Glad we stayed up there and caught a few "z's last night. The deer were everywhere, and with the snow showers it would have been a stressful ride home.

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We went out on the east side and picked up 6 fish. Biggest being 26 1/2. Learned it's time to replace the batteries on the trolling motor, get another drift sock or finally spurge for a kicker. I could only get the big motor down to about 1.7 mph and the fish we picked up were when I was trolling with the trolling motor at around 1.2 mph. Problem was, the trolling motor only lasted for about an hour and half. We left around 11 after realizing we just were'nt getting slowed down enough and the toes were starting to get cold...

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That slow speed was the key this weekend and will be going forward. I upgraded to a 24 volt trolling motor about seven years ago and that will make all the difference in your running hours for your trolling motor.

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Hey D, How many pound trolling motor do you have and what size boat? I have an 18' boat with a 24v 70 pound thrust and I only get an 1 1/2hrs out of mine. I thought my batteries were pretty good too, but maybe it's time for some new ones if you are getting a lot more run time than that.

We picked up almost all of our fish with the trolling motor, because the fish were so shallow. We didn't do as well as you did D but if my trolling motor would have lasted longer maybe we would have. We caught 17 with the biggest being a fat 28 3/4", but in that hour and a half we had battery power we picked up 12. I caught my fish in 2 to 4 FOW. I have a four stroke motor but it still seems to spook them quite a bit. Even with S turns we had a tuff time after we had to use the four stroke. To prove it after an hour without a fish we took a pass with our basically dead batteries and picked one up right away. Then the batteries were really dead and our night of fishing was pretty much over.

Do the fish move out of that shallower water into 6-10 FOW later on?

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In regards to the big motor spooking shallow fish. It's more of an issue during calm conditions. If you have some wind it doesn't appear to be a big issue. Almost every fish I've caught in less than 4 ft of water trolling cranks has been with the big motor. You may need to run longer lines though. When running shallow I'm usually running about 100' of line. This of course means you have to find lures that will run that shallow with that amountof line out. There are several out there. You also need to be able to slow down enough to trigger fish.

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I believe I have a 55 lb thrust Minn Kota. I have a 17.5' Trophy 170 Alumacraft. The batteries will last all night running the boat at the low speeds we are talking about and I'd guess they'd run a couple of nights if I tried.

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D, thanks I guess it's time for new batteries. When I was running the trolling motor I only had to have out 15-20 feet of line and it was working real well. It's a lot less work with that amount of line out.

Borch, when you say raps that run that shallow you mean the #13 originals? Have you found any other lures that work that shallow? In the original #13's the selection of colors seem to be poor. Have you found any that work real well or do you customize yours? When you have a 100ft of line out do you still have to do S turns? Do you ever run mono to get the lures to run shallower? or do you strictly run super lines?

Thanks Guys

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It's good idea to have the trolling motor option. I use mine when the conditions are right. Like Borch said, more line out, and my kicker doesn't seem to spook them too much, however, I know it has some effect. We try and compensate with longer 7-8.5 foot trolling rods and S turns. We have seen fish at night in 1-2 feet with the spotlight coming off the lake. Walleyes, Pike, and even Perch. I've often thought of casting from the boat to certain spots at night and will have to experiment more with this. I get a bit leary trolling much shallower than 4 feet out there in the dark, especially this year with the water so low.

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Quote:

That slow speed was the key this weekend and will be going forward. I upgraded to a 24 volt trolling motor about seven years ago and that will make all the difference in your running hours for your trolling motor.


I have a 24V system ... just the original batteries that I put in in 2002. Time to replace.

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i was wondering, if there was no wind to consider, is it worth going to the west / northwest from now and into november or would you put in on the east because its closer to home? is there alot of difference between down by isle and maybe more towards agate other than finding a good landing?

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Few years ago I bought a 24V 72lb thrust transom mount Minn Kota Vantage. Will run a couple of days on 1 charge, especially running a little over 1 mph. I would recommend it to anyone. Better than a kicker motor.

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This is a late report for last Sat night, but I think its interesting to see the different patterns...

I fished solo in St Albans from about 7:00 pm to 1:15 am. Caught a 23" and 21.75" (honest!) within about 15 minutes with HJ #10 glass perch, over rocks 4' to 7'. That pattern seemed to die, so I moved to the weedline and experimented inside, outside, and over the weeds, and at different speeds from 1.0 to 2.0 mph. Based on my initial quick results, I figured the fish were aggressive so I stepped up to #12 HJs, Rogues, and even a jointed rap. No luck. Finally stepped down again to a HJ#10 in clown and soon picked up a 25" on the inside weeds. Again no more hits, so I moved back to the rocks, same lure. Quickly got a hit. But my rod man (me) and my net man (me again) messed up and the fish popped off next to the boat. Probably in the 22" to 24" range. Getting cold, so thought I would try one last lure change back to the glass perch HJ#10. Quickly had another fish on, but my motor guy (me) screwed up and gave her slack, and she was off. I came off the water then.

As I thought about it later, I realized the two first fish hit just after I locked my reel after feeding line out. And none of the fish were very aggressive. None of the fish slammed the lure. There were all "just there", and they were all lightly hooked on the rear treble.So for me the best pattern was very slow (probably less than 1 mph), small lures, over shallow rocks. Both clown and glass perch worked, the only 2 colors I tried in the small size.

I generally had difficulty maintaining good boat control at that low speed because of the N wind (using a T8 kicker). I took my bow mount off before the trip because I have trouble seeing which way it is pointed through my windshield in the dark.

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D, thanks I guess it's time for new batteries. When I was running the trolling motor I only had to have out 15-20 feet of line and it was working real well. It's a lot less work with that amount of line out.

Borch, when you say raps that run that shallow you mean the #13 originals? Have you found any other lures that work that shallow? In the original #13's the selection of colors seem to be poor. Have you found any that work real well or do you customize yours? When you have a 100ft of line out do you still have to do S turns? Do you ever run mono to get the lures to run shallower? or do you strictly run super lines?

Thanks Guys


Most #13 raps will run that shallow(3-4ft). The shallow floating rattlin rogues are a favorite of mine up shallow. Yozuri's run that shallow but have a tighter action so they doen't run real well at real slow speeds. The rebel fastback minnows run 1-2'. I have lots of off brand stuff that runs that shallow.

I do some S turns or a pump of the rod works well for a change of speed. I rarely reel up to make a turn to repeat a run. I go off the strucutre a bit and gradually work my way back on. The lure stays on top and you get that change in speed and direction which can often trigger strikes.

Lots of options on the raps. They keep changing or discontinuing some of my favorites. Clown, Firetiger, chartruese, shiner, silver bass and flor. orange/gold are some of my favorite. In the rattlin rogues I like firetiger, clown, chrome/black and chrome/blue.

As far as modifying lures I do a little bit. If you bend the eye down toward the lip on a minnow type bait it'll widen the wobble and decrease the diving depth. Comes in handy for when you're really moving slow and shallow.

I always have a mono rigged pole along. I don't use it often, but sometimes it comes in handy. However, I run superbraids 95% of the time.

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Was out saturday night as well and I tried HJ 10's to no avail. I agree that the key was slow, slow, slow and had a bunch of light biters and fish pop off. Also, our best color which got really hot between 12-2 was purple perch in a #12.

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Great information guys. I will pause the boat 5-10 seconds sometimes, as painful as it is, it sometimes will trigger strikes. We use line counters, which takes the guesswork out of where we are in the water column. 1ft Mille Chip as these fish really start to group up on certain spot on spots, and different line types/thickness depending on how deep and far back we want to run the baits. For example, Stealth will run a bit Shallower than Power Pro in the same diameter. One last thing, check your baits before dark if possible to make sure they are tuned and are tracking straight. I like to have a few of my favorites checked and ready before dark. You'd be surprised how many are not, even new out of the box. Also, most suspending Rouges, and many HJ's DO NOT suspend at all, some float, some HJ's actually sink. May be important maybe not, but when you are crawling along it will make a difference.

Rolle SE side can be very good too. It is a different bite than the extended weedlines of the West. I generally look for wind when trolling the shallow rocks like that area, but that doesn't mean they won't shine on a calm night either, especially in the remaining weeds over there.

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One last thing, check your baits before dark if possible to make sure they are tuned and are tracking straight. I like to have a few of my favorites checked and ready before dark. You'd be surprised how many are not, even new out of the box. Also, most suspending Rouges, and many HJ's DO NOT suspend at all, some float, some HJ's actually sink. May be important maybe not, but when you are crawling along it will make a difference.


That's essential. When you're running that slow a correctly tuned plug really can make the difference. Seems also that the suspending lures and more prone to sinking with the colder water temps. I know I have a few husky jerks that suspend almost perfectly during the summer months and sink fairly quickly come late fall.

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As water gets colder it becomes denser. I would think that an object that normally suspends in less dense water would actualy float higher.......... But since the water is actually denser it will provide more friction on the lure and could cause it to dive deeper. DOES anyone know if boats travel faster in cold water vs warm water? I think that some grad student could actually run with this and write a paper on water density vs coeficient of friction. Wow maybe the "Precision Guide to Trolling" will have to include a water temperature line also!!!!!!!!!!

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