Jump to content

    If You  want access  to member only forums on FM, You will need to Sign-in or  Sign-Up now .

    This box will disappear once you are signed in as a member.

Recommended Posts


Hello everyone. I have been fishing my whole life, just not much walleye fishing. I bought a boat a couple weeks ago and I’m not having much luck. I normally troll with Rapalas and I have tried bottom bouncers with a crawler harness with little luck. I don’t think I’m running the bottom bouncers right because I get snagged almost every time. I’m sure I’m doing it wrong. I usually fish Island Lake or Fish Lake. Any help or pointers would be awesome! Thanks

Link to post
Share on other sites

Use a heavy enough bottom bouncer to stay almost vertical and don't drag it on the bottom. Just use it to feel bottom and then reel or hold it up a few inches off bottom. Use a spinner rig with a half crawler. Try hammered gold or silver and a bright colored blade or two. I usually use 1 1/2 to 2 ounce bouncers in 20' and over. If you're fishing shallower weed lines skip the bouncer and use a 1/4oz bullet sinker.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Tom Sawyer


7 hours ago, JasonG917 said:

 Any help or pointers would be awesome! Thanks

Try fishing some weed edges. Either above them, or next to them on the inside edge if darker water or windy conditions, or on the break in clear water, calm conditions. Post front fish are usally buried in the thick stuff. At this time of year most of the forage base is still relating to weeds. Pitching jigs and plastics is bread and butter right now. Go pan some weed beds next time out for gold...

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

If you have electronics they will let you know what is down there.  If you are marking schools of fish slow down and fish them.  A jig and crawler/leech is a good option as a livebait rig.  Cranks and spinner rings are my search presentations.  Once you make contact you can slow down if needed.  I hear Fish Lake has lots of timber to snag you up.  Shoot for a 45 degree angle with your fishing line when pulling spinners.  Usually .8-1.5 mph are good speeds to start with.

Like Tom mentioned there will always be some weed related walleyes.  They will he where the food is at.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Jarrid Houston

There is nothing wrong with trolling cranks, spinners or jigging when we target walleyes.  All can work in a given day, or sometimes picking a choosing tactics is best.  If one tactic does not work, move onto the next.  With that said, patience is sometime needed to build confidence. A typical outing may include starting off with a troll.  Cranks are faster and a little less work.  Utilize dive charts for the depths you are targeting.  Fish are starting to move to deeper waters, but don't abandon the shallower areas, as these are usually feeding grounds. Once we pick up a fish on a troll, we usually mark the spot and whip around to see if we cant get another to go. If its multiple fish, now we are getting dialed in and may switch tactics to jigging.  Utlizing electronics definetly is key to search out rock, sand, mud, vegetation and transition areas that look "fishy"..Soft plastics tipped on jigs, is usually for a reaction bite, or aggressive fish.  One may elect to use gulp, impulse or others that integrate a strong scent.  Live bait is always a good option and I never leave shore without a container of crawlers, leeches or minnows.  Now that water temps are rising, I prefer to not try and keep minnows all that often, but sometimes "gut" feelings dictate the day.  When trolling spinners, shorten up the lead.  Most pre-rigged set ups always have a long lead that I will shorten up, sometime to 18" depending on what type of substrate we are working. Someone mentions the 45 degree rule... Yes on that !  Another option to elude snags is to utilize a Northland butterfly blade.  It is a nice composite that has a slower drop and can be trolled or drifted down to about 1/4 mph. Lets, also not forget about drifting pratices with Lindy rigs and other types of floating jigs teamed up with a weight over expansive flats.  Walleye fishing can be fun, but frustrating.. To me that's the sport of it! Once you get it, you got it!.....Tight lines, and remember the importance of fish conservation...Capt. JH

  • Thumbs Up 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow, so much good advice given above from very reputable and personally respected sources.  Both Fish and Island has a very frustrating large amount of timber and snags present.  I agree with the straight down to 45* line angles but don't discount lighter weights either. I use a lot of  3/8 - 3/4 oz weights depending on depth, current, speed, and wind conditions. If you normally fish with more than one person,  initially vary the color presentation, we all have our "go to" colors and techniques that will mostly produce results, but some days a certain color, presentation , and or speed ( silver vs  painted color, jigging vs tolling...) makes the difference between a good day and a GREAT day.  Also, unless you have a photographic memory, start keeping a log or try and remember what, when, and how it worked last time.  

  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I like to troll for eyes mostly pulling bottom bouncers and spinner rigs. A good sensitive rod will also help you tell what kind of bottom your bouncer is going over. Just holding the rod in my hand I can tell when I go from mud, to gravel rocky areas etc. Also as mentioned its important use the right weight, line etc so that your line angle from your rod while trolling is at 45 degrees. You want the bottom bouncer bouncing to keep the bait in the strike zone versus just dragging sideways on the bottom with the bait dragging on the bottom with it.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Tom Sawyer

I didn't want you to think of limiting the search to weeds, just what has been productive lately. There is certainly fish starting to key on bug hatches, and suspended fish aren't that far from being hunted down either, but weeds are a great starting point, all year round, and usually over looked by most. Also, I would suggest learning, and even more importantly, gain confidence in each presentation out there. There definitely is a time, place, and need to finesse vs. a simple coverage tactic, triggering vs. tempting approach. As Jarrod said, it's the thrill of the hunt, that makes walleye fishing fun. Every good walleye angler has lots of options to pull from his "bag of tricks", each have strong suits and weaknesses.....FishOn!

  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Similar Content

    • SkunkedAgain
      By SkunkedAgain
      The Timberjay recently had a typical article about the Hatchery in operation in Pike Bay. It reminded me that they did not strip eggs last year due to Covid, and there was some discussion about how this would affect the lake's walleye population. I did a little digging last night into the annual growth of walleye in Vermilion and found that it takes somewhere in the 3-4 year range to reach eater-size range. That means that the "covid experiment" won't be real noticeable until the end of this season when walleye start reaching double-digits in length but most likely 2022 when those walleye are in the 10-14 inch range.
      From the Lake Vermilion Fisheries Management Plan (https://files.dnr.state.mn.us/publications/fisheries/special_reports/183.pdf
      Besides abundance, differences between walleye captured in East and West Vermilion are most evident in age and size structure. Overall, walleye in West Vermilion tend to grow faster and live longer than walleye in the east basin. For example, by age-5, walleye captured in East Vermilion average about 16 inches compared to 18 inches in West Vermilion. Walleye on Lake Vermilion can survive to age-8 or older, however older walleye (age-7+) tend to be more abundant in West Vermilion.
      I figure that Lake of the Woods is similar in latitude to Vermilion, so probably similar growth rates.
      From the Lake Of The Woods section of the DNR website: (https://www.dnr.state.mn.us/areas/fisheries/baudette/low_walleye.html#:~:text=Generally%2C walleye in Lake of,male walleye are sexually mature.
      Generally, walleye in Lake of the Woods reach 12 inches long when they are three years old. Male walleye start to mature when they are 12 inches long, 3 years old, but it is not until they are 16 inches long, 5 years old, that all male walleye are sexually mature. Male walleye longer than 24 inches are extremely rare.
      Female walleye grow faster than male walleye, after they are three years old. Female walleye start to mature when they are 4 years old, 15 inches long, but all of them are not sexually mature until they are 7 years old, 20 inches long. Generally, female walleye which are 25 inches long are about 10 years old, and 30 inch females are in the range of 20 years old. The oldest Lake of the Woods walleye we have aged was a 23 year old female which was 30.3 inches long.
    • walleye345
      By walleye345
      Hello I am looking for a weight system to help me catch more fish.  I am torn between Snakebite Snaps and Offshore Snap Weights.  They are 2 very different clips. Anyone know anything about either?  Was looking to grab some here soon.  

    • tbetts1000
      By tbetts1000
      What is the best chip option for Vermilion. I am getting a new Lowrance HDS and need some guidance.
    • walleye101
      By walleye101
      Are Minnesota anglers aware of legislation currently in progress to lower the statewide bag limit from six to four?  I sure don't hear much discussion about it. 
    • lakesareaoutdoors
      By lakesareaoutdoors
      Fished Lake of the Woods yesterday during this tropical heat wave.. I'll tell you what, if you're planning on fishing in these temps, bring backup gear for your essentials (Heat, Auger, etc). Doing this was key for us yesterday when the buddy heater hose was acting up due to the cold. We had a fun day! Check out the video below:
    • whateverisbiting
      By whateverisbiting
      Just wondering when jigging for eyes in the winter, why is the standard to tip a jig with a minnow head and not the whole minnow or the minnow tail?  Would seem like a more natural presentation to tip with the tail and not the head.  Anyone experimented with this?
    • Ducksngeese21
      By Ducksngeese21
      Has anyone had any luck on the jefferson chain by cleveland or any of the lakes by Madison lake
    • leech~~
      By leech~~
      Can't seem to ever get a sled ride together anymore on the other side of the wall.
      Any guys with a sled and porty want to get together for a meetup and fish somewhere some weekend for the day or weekend if way up north?
      Crappies-Walleyes both? 
      Mill Lacs, Brainerd area................?   The more the merrier, safety in numbers helps if someone needs a pull or getting out of slush.
      Not a big plan. Meet at a lake. Stare at the lake map, mark a spot or spots on the gps and head out.
      Not really worried about a cookout, but we could just cuts into fishing time.  Bring our own lunch, bait and pop or? 
      Don't want to count out wheelers with portys but hope you can hang if its deep or slushy. 😕
      Oh forget the Public service announcement: Portys must be fished at least 6' feet apart or more!. Wearing a mask is a good idea on a cold sled ride. No talking about Trump, Biden or God will also keep us safe from each other! 😆
      So again, no big complicated plan. Meet up, check map, go fishing! 👍

    • Duckhunt
      By Duckhunt
      House was new in spring 2018. Spray foamed top to bottom. Extremely Light weight, all aluminum construction 1300-1400 pounds. You can easily pull with atv. with little tongue weight. Foldable and removable bunk, we used a cot for 2nd bed.
      -6 catch covers w/ sleeves
      -Nuway furnace, needs no electricity to operate manually, also hooked up to thermostat
      -12V low amp draw circulating fans -30A 115v to 12VDC power converter/battery charger with gen/power hookup
      -battery box with 12VDC-115v inverter, and battery meter (newer 31 battery negotiable)
      - LED hole light and beverage holder above every hole
      -LED interior and porch lights
      -Tv/dvd combo on swing wall mount
      -Pioneer stereo with 4 speakers -Loose spare tire (white steel rim)
      -Window Air Conditioner
      This house can go all weekend on a single battery without a generator. No exterior damage anywhere, tires great. Looking to possibly upgrade. Located 20 miles north of Rapids. Thanks!

    • Dal72ice
      By Dal72ice
      Leech Lake.  I am wondering what to expect.  I think I might go out on Boy bay using the public landing on Sugar Point.  First are there any safety concerns, ice conditions to worry about, Landing safe?  Second what can I expect for fish? Kind of looking for some nice panfish during the day and a stray walleye or two towards evening
  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Fish Head
      I don't think Cliff retired. Maybe he just cut back some.   
    • gimruis
      Absolutely.  Although they are technically considered a "rough fish" by the DNR, they play a critical role as a food source for many game fish.  In lakes and rivers that lack tulibees, they are often the top forage for muskies too.  Additionally, they are native to our state whereas the carp species which look similar, are not.
    • SkunkedAgain
      Thanks, I definitely will check those guys out.
    • SkunkedAgain
      I remember counting just shy of 50 boats in Black Bay around Memorial Day last weekend. It's more than I've ever seen even at Fishing Opener when the spawn is timed perfectly.   What I love about Black Bay is that once the walleye and crappie runs finish up in the spring, the fishing pressure calms way down.
    • DonkeyHodey
      Brag Alert***:  Got a PB white sucker.  With tail pinched it was just at 26 inches.   1.)  This Fish is almost certainly a post spawn female (she was pretty flattened out in the egg section).  probably 20-30 years old (maybe more). 2.)  A big fish drops ~10,000 eggs per spawn (give or take 5000).  With that said, this lovely lady has probably (through her babies) directly provided >200,000 fish meals for the predatory fish (and birds) in the river. 3.)  Many of her offspring will have grown up to spawn and continue the process;  If a mere 5 of her babies grew to spawn for 20 years then Statistically >1 million baby suckers will have come from her to feed the game fish in the Mississippi river!  However, playing the statistics/numbers game:  if ~0.1% of her babies grow to spawn and their babies (with a similar 0.1% chance) grow to spawn, you are looking at 100 million baby suckers descended from this one fish!   Next time you catch a nice plump Smallie or Wally in the river, realize that they grow and thrive because of "grocery getters" like this.    Preachy Alert***--Too many "fisherman" think these are trash fish and fail to recognize their critical role in a healthy fishery...  NEVER throw these on the shore! (notwithstanding the fact that it's also illegal...)
    • Rick
      Dry conditions mean very high fire danger persists in north-central and northeastern Minnesota. Spring outdoor recreation activity is increasing, and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources urges outdoor enthusiasts to limit the use of campfires and use caution with off-road vehicles that could spark and start a wildfire. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Muskyhunter73
      Cliff was guiding last year. Did he retire this year?
    • Pat McGraw
      Getting so excited for 2021 walleye season!  
    • CigarGuy
      Ya, not much you can do about it. Still enough lake to get away from most of the crowds. My son and buddies will be all weekend, we'll be following each other around. They're were about 12 boats in Black Bay last night and didn't have to play bumper boats.
    • leech~~
      Might be able to do some shore fishing by the boat launch on near by Trout Lake as well.  Good Luck!  
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.