We recently did an article on the “Must Haves” for walleye fishing so it only made sense to follow up with a piece that would cover those items that, while not absolutely necessary to an angler’s success, can and often do make the fish catching more efficient, productive and ultimately more fun. In the “Must Haves” article we covered the fishing lines we felt a walleye angler had to have. We talked about a no-stretch super-line like Berkley FireLine and its importance to jig fishing.
We recently did an article on the “Must Haves” for walleye fishing so it only made sense to follow up with a piece that would cover those items that, while not absolutely necessary to an angler’s success, can and often do make the fish catching more efficient, productive and ultimately more fun.
In the “Must Haves” article we covered the fishing lines we felt a walleye angler had to have. We talked about a no-stretch super-line like Berkley FireLine and its importance to jig fishing. When it comes to accessorizing your jig fishing line, one thing to consider would be a highly visible line such as Berkley FireLine in Flame Green color. Often a hi-vis line like this will help you detect bites visually that you might otherwise miss. It’s amazing how many times on a jig-pitching presentation that the bite is barely felt, but you will see the line ‘jump” or simply start moving off to the side as the fish begins swimming away with the bait. A newer line that many may find even more “viewer friendly”, especially if they are looking for a mono line with high visibility, is Berkley’s Trilene Sensation in Blaze Orange.
Accessorizing your jig arsenal is another great way to help up the odds in your favor when going after walleyes, especially when you can find a jig that suits a specific situation you are fishing. Jigging for early season walleyes in run-off swollen rivers is one scenario that comes to mind. The heavy current can often make getting and keeping your jig vertical and in the feeding zone a difficult task. Using a jig that cuts thru the current more effectively can make a huge difference, and Bass Pro Walleye XPS jig does this to perfection.
Of course, accessorizing doesn’t have to stop at jig design. Jig color can play a big role in success from one day to the next. While a standard array of colors like Chartreuse, White, Green and Orange are a must, adding a selection of 2-tone or even metallic finishes can increase your ability to get bit in certain conditions. A 2-tone color jig can help you to more quickly fine tune a color preference, or simply offer the fish that something “different” that will get their attention.
As long as we are on the subject of lures, spinners are another category that lends itself well to accessorizing. Having a good selection of basic blade colors, shapes and sizes is important, but expanding on that and adding some innovative shapes like the Bass Pro Shops XPS Walleye Angler Willow Leaf Blades, as well as some larger and smaller sized Indiana and Colorado blades to the mix can go a long way to getting bites you might not otherwise hook up with. It may surprise you how many times going to a size or 2 larger blade will get you bigger fish than a standard size #3 or #4 blade will. On the other hand, in gin-clear water under tough conditions, going to a small #2 size blade on a spinner may make all the difference n the world. It’s a matter of having the right tools available to you when the situation presents itself.
In our “Must Haves” article we covered how important in-line boards like Off Shore Tackle’s OR-12 Side Planers were to a walleye fisherman’s trolling gear. One reason we have had such a long running love affair with these boards is because they are so adaptable to so many trolling applications. By accessorizing your OR-12 boards with Off Shore Tackle’s Tattle Flag Upgrade Kit, you will find it much easier to “read” the boards for small fish bites, light bites or even unwanted debris fouling your lure. With the Tattle Flag equipped board, any tension at the business-end of the presentation will cause the flag to “dip”, indicating there is something going on. It’s an accessory that borders on a “Must have” for many trollers.
When it comes to accessorizing however, few pieces of fishing equipment have opened up to more accessories than electronics. It was only a very short time ago that your fishing electronics were basically just a sonar and a GPS. Now, with the introduction of Lowrance’s HDS systems, we can accessorize our boat’s electronics in a number of ways. This would include networking multiple units together to share information, adding features like StructureScan™ with SideScan and DownScan imaging, and most recently adding a Lowrance SonicHub™ to your HDS system which is a waterproof audio server which will allow you full remote operation of your iPod, iPhone, Lowrance LWX-1 SIRIUS® radio, AM/FM tuner and more.
So as you are getting ready for the upcoming season, don’t just concentrate on the “Must Haves” in your walleye fishing arsenal. Be sure you consider the accessories you’ll want and need to ensure you head into the year ready for your Next Bite.