Fishing for Walleyes is the most underrated fishing in the entire freshwater fishing world”. If you have ever eaten Walleye, you will change your opinion quickly. Boy, is it good! And, not a bone in a carload of fillets! They are a pleasure to clean. It is unfortunate they are not found in the southern part of our country as much as they are in more northern climates. However, the current record Walleye was caught in Tennessee, I believe. But, you usually think of Canada and the northern states when you want to get some Walleyes.
Let’s take a look at some of the “how to’s” fisherman need to be aware of to catch these delicious fish. After all, you need to have some good “catchin” before you can have some good “eatin”. So, take note and keep these tips in your mind when you have the chance to get some Walleye.
You will need to find some structure in the lake or river. Walleye do not need a lot of structure, but they will want some. I have found that a rocky bottom is often enough and that is easier to fish than the logs, weeds, or manmade cover that also will hold Walleye. They will often be near the edge of the structure and feed on the baitfish that comes by. They will retreat into the cover, but will not usually do this until some pressure requires them to do so. Fishing activity can cause them to retreat, but you usually have several on your stringer before that happens.
If you are fishing over a bed of rocks, you will not have any serious problems with your lure hanging up. If the cover is stumps and logs, you have to be careful and the best advice I can give you is to make your lures as weedless or as snagless as possible by putting some wires on the lure that will prohibit the hooks from catching on everything they pass.
If the fish are sticking to the less accessible areas of cover, think about using live bait instead of lures. You have to retrieve lures, but you can let bait almost straight down which helps you keep from getting snagged. Also, if the fish are in heavy cover, the slow – or – no presentation of the bait will work for you and some times, work very well.
Another tip to keep in mind is the weather and the cloudiness of the sky. One time I was fishing for Walleye in Canada and it was raining, with grey sky and dark water. There were 3 people fishing from the boat we were in, and one of us started to catch Walleye. The other two of us were trolling right beside the one catching, but we were getting NO bites or strikes. We finally figured out that the one catching had a yellow lure on and we had other colored ones on our lines. We said “OK, we’ll change to yellow” and bang – we started catching them too! We stayed in the cold rain as long as we wanted to and continued to catch fish. There was another group of American fishermen staying at the small lodge where we were and we told them we were leaving – so they should take our place and to be sure to use yellow lures. That night, they told everyone how “smart” we were and we turned a bad day of fishing into a good day as they continued to catch fish right where we were trolling!
Don’t forget vertical jigging and spoon jigging as they too will catch fish for you and they have their place in your tackle box to be used when the situation is right. Just in case you are not familiar with Walleye fishing, you should sure try it soon and get familiar with the delicious eating also!