: trolling when water is 33degs ?
12-30-2002, 09:40 AM
has anyone had any luck trolling for walleye when the surface temp has been around 33deg for a few weeks? we were catching them trolling but they seem to have shutdown, do you have to switch to jigging or drifting with live bait when the water has been this cold for so long, the lake is normally frozen by now so it is a new experience for us, usually we get them trolling until the lake freezes, but it usually freezes over a shorter period of time, are walleye usually on the bottom when water that cold?, i'm anxious to learn more about this situation, as it is new for me, thankyou.
12-30-2002, 10:16 AM
Walleye are cold blooded. And as their motabiolism slows with the dropping water temps, so does their energy to chase and feed on fleeing baitfish/prey. They both need less food, and digest and obsorb that food slower, in cold water conditions. Dont get me wrong, I'm not saying they'll never chase anything in cold water. But make it easy for them if you can. Use some jigs and live bait and put it in their faces. Unless some other variable is keeping them down and inactive, they'll drop in for supper.
12-30-2002, 10:46 AM
The general assumption is that trolling in cold water is NOT good. With the exception of coldwater/pre-spawn periods, I have found that spinners, smaller the better, tipped with minnows first and or crawlers, 1 mile an hour or less, will work fine as well as cranks. I do believe that walleyes feed for shorter periods of time in winter so fishing prime times such as the first and last hour of light will up the odds with any presentation. Scents such as baitmate will work in these extreme cold water situations too. Of course, anytime, cold or warm, if you find a concentration of fish, hovering over them with livebait presentations work best and can be the quickest way to make hay. So...don't be afraid of spinners if the cranks don't work. By the way...slender, floating,shallow running, stick type cranks will be better in the cold stuff versus the shad type baits. Slooooowwwwerrrrrr.....lol
Happy New year!
12-30-2002, 02:30 PM
do walleye still suspend when surface temp close to 32degrees, or stay mostly on the bottom? and when the bay is half frozen are they more likely to be under the ice or in the open water areas?
12-31-2002, 12:00 AM
Yes, they will suspend in cold water/winter periods. It was a fairly well kept secret around here for several years but lately the cats out of the bag.
On my home water of Muskegon Lake (Michigan) we have had several winters with warmer than average temps, and therefore have open water instead of ice to fish on. We enjoyed trolling cranks for suspended fish in 20' to 40' of water with hardly anybody else out there with us. Unfortunately last year a photographer from the local paper snapped a few pics of an angler with some dandy eyes and ran it on the front page, talk about lighting a fuse! LOL
Amazingly enough I have experienced something different than my learned colleague Mr. Fellegy has descibed. My best producing lure has been a deep diving Reef Runner, albeit we troll them fairly slow (1-1.5 mph)with Trailer Trash Pink, and Brown Perch being my top two colors last year. If you have open water don't hesitate to get out there and give it a try!
12-31-2002, 06:08 AM
"learned"?? lol Don't look at my stats lately!
I am one that usually adds an element to the crankbait to get it down to the fish zone, so shallow, floating, fake minnows are easy to work into the mix. My "learned colleague", Mr. Seelhoff, might say....'try the Ripstick or Little Ripper and see what happens....hmmmmmm....'
Happy New year!
12-31-2002, 11:56 AM
I AGREE ON ALL THE ABOVE POSTS, BUT USUALLY MY BEST SPEED IS FROM .5-.8 MPH ON THE GPS. LIL' RIPPERS ARE MY GO TO BAIT WHEN THE DEEP REEF RUNNERS ARE NOT PRODUCING. I'D BE OUT THERE THIS WEEKEND, BUT I'VE BEEN OUT OF COMMISION BECAUSE OF A WORN OUT TRAILER. (WILL, THANK GOD, BE IN AT THE END OF THE MONTH!) CAN'T WAIT FOR SPRING AND THE ERIE ISLAND PRE-SPAWN BITE. ERIE DESENT, MUD MINNOW AND REBEL QUEEN ARE USUALLY THE BEST COLORS AND I CAN'T FORGET RED HEAD. HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL AND TIGHT LINES, EYE PROBLEM
hey eye problem, i'm tryin to hook up with someone for the pre spawn bite on erie this year i've fished in april on erie twice in my whole life. i'm lookin to fish erie alot this year but would like some help as i'm from chicago and don't make it there alot. i also fish smallies, do u? well i'm leaving my email and hope to here from you firstname.lastname@example.org thanks
01-04-2003, 10:48 AM
we have still been trolling although most of the water is frozen but find that some days or even part of the days we have to jig and or drift to catch them, we tend to troll early and late when fish often more active.