Walleye Fishing Tips
The month of May is always exciting time for me. It's the first opportunity to get back in the boat after all those months of hard water. Nobody realizes the excitement a Brainerd walleye fishing guide feels when he finally gets back on the water after 5 to 6 months. The thought of night trolling for walleyes makes me restless each spring. I lose many nights of sleep during those first few weeks of the walleye season. Even after working as a fishing guide all day, I still find myself taking my kids or friends out to do a little walleye trolling in the evenings, knowing full well that I'll be moving a little slower the next day. Brainerd, Minnesota has many excellent night trolling opportunities for walleyes. The best lakes in the area are Gull, Pelican, North Long, and Round. Look for the same slow sloping areas with the sand or pea-rock bottom. New cabbage growth is a plus. The only difference is, that at night, the walleyes will be shallower. I like to start in 6 feet of water each night. If that doesn't work. Go shallower! There have been many evenings that I have trolled with the motor tilted up in less than 3 feet of water. Make sure that you let out at least 100-150 feet of line when you're trolling. When a boat passes over walleyes in shallow water, the fish will spook out to the sides. You must have enough line out so that the fish have time to return to their previous location before the bait moves through. My favorite baits are number 13 to 18 floating Rapalas in blue/silver, black/gold, and fire tiger. Make sure that you allow the lure to fall back 4-5 feet and then pull it forward from time to time. As you pull the rod forward, you will feel the vibration of the plug running true. When you pull forward and don't feel the plug vibrate, the bait has entangled itself in weeds. Nothing is worse than sitting in a boat for and hour without a bite because your lure wasn't running true! My favorite rod for pulling raps is a St. Croix 7 foot medium light bait caster spooled with 10 lb test Trilene XT.