Walleye Fishing – How to Catch Big Ones
By Steve Lake
If you are going after Walleye the best places are from the Midwest Northward and into Canada. Walleye prefer sand and gravel bottoms and lakes with perch which they readily eat. I fish a lot of lakes that have a healthy Walleye population but no perch.
Walleye are finding themselves in lakes further south. Lakes with Walleye will also have a population of other gamefish such as Northern, Smallmouth, Largemouth, Crappie, Musky and Sunfish.
Finding Walleye’s has a lot to do with the Oxygen in the lake. Lot’s of fertile lakes don’t have a good oxygen level at the lower depths especially below the thermocline.
This will force Walleye into shallow water 10 ft. or shallower.
Walleye spawn in water along shoreline’s where there is good water movement and gravel on the bottom. Spawning begins when water gets to around 48 degrees. From this time until about 10 days after spawning females don’t bite. Smaller males will bite during spawning. After spawning Walleye
You usually find Walleye’s in 30 ft. of water or less. In the deeper lakes you will find walleye along shorelines and hanging around shallow mid lake humps. I caught a 10LB Walleye right up on a rock cliff in Canada that went down into the water. I bounced a jointed Rapala off the wall. My uncle and cousin caught bigger the same way.
Lot’s of Walleye’s are caught at night. Cloudy breezy days with a little chop ( The Walleye Chop ) are good because this deflects the sun’s rays. On calm sunny days Walleye spend their time in shade by weeds or near the bottom in deeper water.
Fishing in the evening with a slip bobber and leech is a great way to catch Walleye. Anchor at the edge of a drop off and cast up into 4 to 8 feet of water. Trolling with minnow lures and shad raps is good also. there is usually a good bite for 3 or 4 hours after dark.
Walleyes will hang at about 12 to 18 feet along the edge of the drop off’s during the day. Slow trolling or back trolling with a 3 way rig with a leech or minnow or casting with a jig and minnow are good methods of catching them. During summer nights, troll in eight to ten feet of water along the tops of the midlake flats, next to the drop-off. Back trolling with a jig and minnow is very effective.
Mid summer is not as good of time to fish for Walleye but they can be caught. You may think that it is because it is so hot out but it is because the perch and bait fish are reaching the proper size (3 inches and bigger) to look really food to walleye and they gorge themselves on these fish. I am a firm believer in the bigger the minnow the bigger the fish caught!
Walleye can be caught through the ice around points and mid lake flats in 10 to 12 ft of water in early ice season. Jan. and later find them in 18 to 30 ft. depths.
This article would not be complete without saying a little something of how good Walleye are to eat! They are great!
To learn more about Walleye and the rare or even extinct Blue Walleye check out Tacklemaster Sports for lot’s of fishing information and resources.