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Planer Board Fishing/Crank/Stickbait selection


Nimbus

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wondering if anyone has been having success pulling boards and stickbaits on Mille Lacs this season, will be fishing Saturday/Sunday and looking for advice on where to pull boards and what might be the best lures to use, colors etc.

Thanks Nimbus

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I usually go off of structure to start and keep trolling as long as I am marking fish off the bottom. It is amazing the amount of free ranging eyes out there. I am targeting fish 10 to 20 feet off the bottom. These are the fish that are in transition or are feeding. Some days are definatly better than others but we usually get some nice fish. The best part is the middle of the day can be as good as anytime. My wife and kids like to get out in the boat but the wife hates to sit still and fish so this is the method I like to do in the summertime. Plus we get to haul in some hogs.

Lab

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I have been doing the same for about the last 5 weeks and doing fairly well. I fish off the structure also at least a half mile, only I have been targeting fish within the bottom 6-8'. I have had my best luck with deep reef runners and deep taildancers. I run them in about 28' deep in 32-36' of water. This bite usually dies off about this time of year, but last week we did well on Friday, ok on Saturday and it was very slow Sunday. I will be back tomorrow afternoon to pull them around again. I usually run 2 boards and a straight line off the back. Last weekend the boards worked much better, but the straight line off the back has out produced the boards earlier this year. Good luck.

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This might seem like kind of a stupid question to you experienced planer board guys, but here goes anyway. Isn't the idea with planer boards to reduce the spook factor from the boat when passing over suspended walleyes?? And....if that's the case, shouldn't it be just as effective to troll directly behind the boat with a long line....say 250-300 feet??

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Although the idea is to reduce spook, it is done as well to cover more area off to the sides of the boat.

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there are no stupid questions when you're fishing. That is the general idea of the board, however, Mille Lacs is very clear and on calm days I have seen fish that I think are spooking in 25-28' of water. The drop straight to the bottom on the graph when you drive over them. Another thing the boards do is give the lure a lot more action. As you pull the boards through waves the board/bait speeds up and then stops at the bottom of the wave. Sometimes this action will trigger more bites. And yes, it does allow you to cover more area.

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The Great benefit to planer boards is not only to keep from spooking fish as well to run diffrent depth lures of each board until you find the depth the fish are at then change the rest of your spread to match, helps also when you fish three or 4+ people in the boat, tough to troll for everyone otherwise. anybody have favorite color choices on your lures?

Thanks Nimbus

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Thanks for the Info everyone, I will put it to good use this weekend. Good Luck Fishing!!!

Nimbus

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Warriorbts - Depending on the wind conditions. I like to use 10lbs fire line which works well in light wind conditions. Fire has a tendency to really wear the clips on the board and slip in windy conditions. In windy conditions I go to 10 pound Trilene XT. If equipment budget limits your number of rods I would go with mono. as it would work in all conditions.

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I switched all of my trolling rods over to 10 lb XT from 10 lb fireline. The reasons for this is fireline has no give and we were loosing lots of fish. Verylittle room for error with fireline. Fireline is also hard on teh boards and you have to wrap the clips to keep the board from coming off this takes extra time when releasing the board to fight the fish. I do like the action of the lure better witht the fireline but not enough to go back.

We did OK on Saturday landing 6 nice fish and loosing one at the net.

Lab

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I use 10 lb. mono on the boards and 10 lb fire on the flat line with no boards. Fire line is tough with boards.

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