A time-tested strategy for catching walleye is the technique of trolling. Since live bait needs to be trolled slowly, you should try back trolling by operating the boat in reverse. Usually, you can slow down to a crawl. When trolling for walleye, you should move a little faster with lures than you do with live bait.
Long-line trolling for walleye is an effective technique when going for fish in shallow waters. Use a lure like a flatfish or thinfin and troll between 100 and 150 feet behind your boat. This distance will allow the fish to see the lure without being scared off by the presence of the boat. This is important because, according to Gary Lewis in "Freshwater Fishing Oregon and Washington," walleye are especially sensitive to the noise of the engine and the shadows produced by the boat.
Baits and Lures
The most effective live bait for walleyes are other fish, especially minnows. Other dependable live baits include frogs, leeches and crayfish. Popular lures for walleyes are junebug spinners and buck tail jigs.
Walleye are often found in the same places where bass, musky and pike live so if you know of fishing areas where these species are popular catches, chances are you can reel in a walleye as well. Walleye are most likely more abundant than those other species as well. Look for a sandbar, reef, or man-made structure in close proximity to the deeper waters in an area and keep your life bait near or even right on the bottom surface. Walleyes will spend most of the day in the deeper waters of a clear lake, but as night falls they may move into shallow waters. Casting lures to try in this situation are just about anything that look like a minnow.
In especially dark spots you can often detect the presence of walleye just by bringing along a flashlight. Walleyes have eyes that reflect light with a glow that almost resembles what you see when you shine a flashlight on a cat's eyes at night.
Jigging is a popular technique in both rivers and lakes. Murky conditions have led the walleye to evolve into fish that strike quickly so use lead head jigs. Lakes where the water is clearer mean trading in lead head for jig-minnow combinations. Fishing for walleye in rivers means finding a good place along where the current breaks when using jigs.