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How to troll in western, rocky bottom lakes? - Walleye Message Central
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  #1  
Old 09-29-2021, 03:22 PM
NM_Trout NM_Trout is offline
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Default How to troll in western, rocky bottom lakes?

I fish lakes in NM, and have had zero luck trolling for walleye. I catch them here on jigs and crankbaits. Both cast.

The lakes here : Abiquiui (Aaa-bee-q), Conchas, Elephant Butte, all have very rocky bottoms. Elephant Butte has some sandy points which are more forgiving.

Conchas has jumbled up boulders on the bottom, and these things eat up my gear when I try to bottom bounce. After about 15 minutes of getting snagged, backing back up to try to unsnag, and then ending up breaking off, I give up. Still, I think there has to be a way to fish this lake trolling for walleyes.

So what's the trick? I've tried trolling long behind me, and short right below the boat. I've tried long-stemmed bottom bouncer weights, as well as some of the rubber coated, banana looking weights. The lake gods don't care. They consume them all.

Any tips for dragging either meat or lures?
Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 09-29-2021, 03:29 PM
NM_Trout NM_Trout is offline
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BTW, Abiquiui and Conchas are also dammed up river beds, so depth changes frequently as the lake snakes around the points. It is difficult to find a large area which is consistent in depth.

Abiquiui does have some more-flat large areas that do hold walleye, but only when we have good water capacity in the reservoir. That has not been the case for quite awhile, and we have been stuck fishing the channel.
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Old 09-29-2021, 04:20 PM
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Ricky Spanish Ricky Spanish is offline
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I don't do much trolling, but I'd bet someone that trolls cranks can chime in with some help. Sounds like a hard bait positioned over them at a known depth may be the ticket. I got as far as buying a couple line counter rods and reels and never got any smarter about the process.
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Old 09-29-2021, 07:04 PM
REW REW is offline
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Do a lot of depth checking and bait ball checking.

If you can find areas where bait balls abound, and you see large hooks below the bait balls, run crank baits at that depth setting to pick off those aggressive feeding walleyes.

Or, if you can find schools of fish hanging in a specific spot, than don't troll and don't jig.

Rather bobber fish with the bait or lure suspended off the bottom by 1-2 feet to target those fish hanging in those particular areas. It is easy to drop a bait down between a bunch of big boulders and nail the fish in those areas with a bobber and bait without losing any gear.

Be safe
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Old 11-19-2021, 07:30 AM
ColoGregS ColoGregS is offline
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You will certainly lose more tackle in our western reservoirs because of the terrain. One helpful hint is to try not to drag bottom with your bouncer, attempt to keep it 6-12" above the bottom. However this is difficult with our rapid depth changes, so find shorelines with consistent depth and start there.

Those flats are the feeding grounds during early season, so you will be in the right area. There are lots of suspending fish in following shad around so when trolling cranks, you often times don't need to be banging bottom.
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Old 11-22-2021, 07:22 AM
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I spent a lot of time fishing reservoirs in Wyoming and the best trolling method was to use shad raps to fish specific depths and avoid bottom. The walleye suspended under bait schools and running a crank through then would generally result in a hookup. This past summer it worked well on Glendo. Snap weights can help get the baits deeper if needed, but bouncing bottom is a recipe for disaster. Floater/diver hardbaits really help in rocky areas. Jigging too, using the lightest weight possible and a more vertical retrieve. If youíre dead set of using bottom bouncers, use light weight versions and run them so they barely tick the rocks every so often. You donít want to plow bottom like in mud, silt, sand, and gravel. But cranks run above the rock should be the bees knees.
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Old 11-22-2021, 08:55 AM
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Assuming there is a fishable population of Walleye I would just follow the channels and look for the bait balls. I don't even bounce cranks off the bottom up here. To expensive and to much hassle. You often times have to make the same trolling run numerous times to figure out the bends and points and where the stray boulder is. Your electronics can help but time in a area is the best thing IMO.
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Old 12-06-2021, 08:00 AM
bobco bobco is offline
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Default bottom bouncing

we fish lake powell allot for walleyes. if your bottom bouncer is bouncing bottom, you are snagged. the trick is to use a heavy enough weight so that you are almost vertical, do not drag it, keep it off the bottom. watch your sonar and probe your depth constantly. a shorter worm harness helps as well. it can be done but allot of work.
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Old 12-06-2021, 08:55 AM
pikeman99 pikeman99 is offline
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Default Walleye

Quote:
Originally Posted by bobco View Post
we fish lake powell allot for walleyes. if your bottom bouncer is bouncing bottom, you are snagged. the trick is to use a heavy enough weight so that you are almost vertical, do not drag it, keep it off the bottom. watch your sonar and probe your depth constantly. a shorter worm harness helps as well. it can be done but allot of work.
Bobco

Have you ever fished the walleye at lake powell in the colder months from November to March?
I might be mistaken but I think maybe the majority of the walleye suspend in these colder months with the stripers. How would you suggest targeting these walleyes that are suspended? The big key would be and not catch stripers. Any help would be appreciated. Tightlines HH
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Old 12-06-2021, 11:56 AM
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Husker525 Husker525 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buckaroo View Post
I spent a lot of time fishing reservoirs in Wyoming and the best trolling method was to use shad raps to fish specific depths and avoid bottom. The walleye suspended under bait schools and running a crank through then would generally result in a hookup. This past summer it worked well on Glendo. Snap weights can help get the baits deeper if needed, but bouncing bottom is a recipe for disaster. Floater/diver hardbaits really help in rocky areas. Jigging too, using the lightest weight possible and a more vertical retrieve. If youíre dead set of using bottom bouncers, use light weight versions and run them so they barely tick the rocks every so often. You donít want to plow bottom like in mud, silt, sand, and gravel. But cranks run above the rock should be the bees knees.

Well said ^^^^

I was formulating a reply, and happen to fish the same reservoir like conditions. This is exactly what I do to minimize getting hung up. Think of this way. Instead of finding bottom and trying to stay just above, use snap weights and speed to get work your way from the top down to the fish.

Another little hint. If you know the fish are just above the boulders, try slabbing. Just tick the tops of the boulders every now and then. The clicking noise of the lure hitting rock can create interest in fish located around the area and bring them in from a distance.
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