How to Catch Walleye

How to Catch Walleye
Walleyes can be a challenging fish to catch because they can be particularly finicky about eating, especially when the sun is high in the school or after a cold front has gone through. Yet anglers continue to pursue walleyes because of their firm, white meat. Additionally, given that it is a challenge to catch them, anglers derive a certain sense of satisfaction when they are able to boat a walleye or two.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • live bait
  • spinning rod and reel
  • 1/4-oz. walking-style sinker
  • swivels
  • 6-lb. test monofilament line
  • #6 hooks
  • 1/4-oz. jig heads
Step 1
Pack along good live baits for walleyes, including minnows, leeches and night crawlers.
Step 2
Tie on a Lindy rig if you have a single rod. The Lindy rig is made up of a 1/4-oz. walking-style sinker attached to the line above a swivel. Tie a 36-inch piece of fishing line to the other end of the swivel, and a #6 hook to the other end of the fishing line. Your second fishing rod---if you have two of them---should be rigged with a 1/4-oz. lead-head jig.
Step 3
Search for walleyes, thinking about the water temperature as you do so. Walleyes will be around the shallow, rocky areas in which they spawned when the water is below 55 F. As water temperature rises through the 60s and into the 70s, focus on deeper, walleye-attracting areas including drop-offs, weed edges, and humps or reefs.
Step 4
Let the Lindy rig and live bait down to the bottom. Troll slowly and make sure your sinker stays in contact with the bottom of the lake. Pay attention to anything that feels different, since walleyes often bite lightly. Troll through different areas until you contact walleyes.
Step 5
Mark the spot where you catch a walleye, because they often travel in large schools. After you have located a school, continue trolling your Lindy rig in the immediate area. If your second rod is rigged with a jig, attach a piece of live bait and cast it around the area.

Tips & Warnings

Use your pointer finger to lightly hold the line as you troll a Lindy rig. It will give you better feel for what's happening with your rig.
If the water is deep, or you are having trouble maintaining contact of the bottom with a 1/4-oz. sinker, switch to a heavier sinker.

Article Written By Larry Anderson

Larry Anderson has been a freelance writer since 2000. He has covered a wide variety of topics, from golf and baseball to hunting and fishing. His work has appeared in numerous print and online publications, including "Fargo Forum" newspaper. Anderson holds a Bachelor of Arts in print journalism from Concordia College.

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