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Trolling On Rocks

Joe Suits

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This may sound dumb, but I've heard people say they bounch the crankbait off the rocks. I've heard some say they just tick the rocks. Here comes the dumb question part! How do they accomplish these tasks??



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For starters, you need to be aware of how deep your lure will dive. Usually on the packaging, they will give some sort of general depth range the lure is capable of achieving. So, if your target depth is, say, 10'... you won't have much luck hitting the rocks with a lure designed to only go 3-4'. There are ways of making it do this, but for the purpose of this post, I'll stick to lure/line. A good source of info is a book called "Precision Trolling". If you don't have, pick it up. It gives dives curves for a majority of todays popular cranks, and is very helpfull. Match that book up with a line counter... you can pretty much know almost exactly where your lure is.
This time of year, I am not using my line-counters. Mostly, I stick to spinning rigs for the ease of use factor in the dark, along with getting the lure down fast. I think some other guys on here will agree. By now... I pretty much let out enough line until "it feels right". I guess that just comes with time on the water.

The best advice I can give is to know what depth range you plan on fishing, and then match that up with the a crank. It's not an exact science, as I will run a #5 shad rap to 11', and once I start hitting rocks, reel up some line until it ticks every on in awhile. Go shallower, repeat the process. One thing to note: if you are hitting rocks pretty good.... theres a very good chance that you will get hung and loose a crank. All of my walleyes this fall (so far) have come from just ticking.... not dredging the bottom.


"get on the natch"

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I try to avoid banging my cranks off the rocks. Rocks are covered with scum. This scum can collect so bad on your cranks it can effect the performance of the bait. The majority of night time walleyes are feeding up and suspended. But if banging the rocks is getting you strikes then stick with it.

Mille Lacs Guide Service

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I agree with both posters. Also, if you are hitting the rocks, pick your rod tip up right away and take up some line or you may lose your lure. If you constantly bang the rocks you will probably break the plastic bill off your lure at some point.

Try to get all things figured out while it's light out. Mark structure with GPS, maybe even make a track or two you'd like to follow in the dark. Know depths your lures are running. If you don't have a line counter, put a bobber stop on your line at a spot where you know your lure is running just above the bottom and adjust from there. Hope this helps--good luck!

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