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  • Writer's pictureNew Wave Fishing Academy

Catch More Walleye By Bass Fishing

Updated: Dec 16, 2023

The title of this article likely sounds like nonsense but give it a chance and we promise it will make sense at the end. Walleye & Bass fishing anglers are probably on the furthest ends of the fishing spectrum or in other words couldn't be more different! The typical bass angler has a big fast boat, dozens of rods with hundreds of artificial lures, and power fishes shallow water cover fast racing from spot to spot around the lake. The typical walleye angler uses smaller boats, slower finesse tactics that involve soaking the bait for long periods of time, live bait, and patiently fishing the same spots until the fish turn on, that or deep open water trolling. With these two anglers and tactics being so different how can you catch more walleye by bass fishing? Let us explain:

When we say you can catch more walleye by bass fishing we don't mean go to bass fishing spots, or even use bass fishing gear. What we mean is to take the bass fishing mentality or approach and apply it to your walleye trips! Growing up the common knowledge was that walleye (we called them pickerel in Georgian Bay area of Ontario) were a very finicky fish that would only bite in low light conditions on very subtle gear & after presenting them a bait for a long time. Old timer walleye anglers would religiously head out just before dusk or sunrise to the faithful fishing spot and sit there until the fish decided to bite! After spending years on the water with more advanced electronics, experimenting on techniques, and implementing out biology based methods, and learning from others across the country we have found that none of this is needed.

The biggest misconception with walleye is that they are "finicky" and take a long time analyzing baits to bite. What we have found from our experiences targeting these fish with advanced electronics is that they aren't taking a long time to decide to bite but rather moving in and out of the area quickly prowling the structures. This can give the impression that the bite "turns on" when a school swims through and "shuts down" right after when in reality you are just not around the fish except when the bites happened. Walleye are moving, all the time, in fact if you see a fish on your sonar while sitting still walleye will appear and then disappear just as quickly while bass seem to linger in the spot giving you a chance to drop on them. To stay on the fish you need to fish quickly and stay mobile moving around the structure just as they are! You don't need to run and gun all over the lake but on the structure you are fishing it is a must.

The other misconception is that they only bite in low light conditions. While the low light condition bite is typically better there are a number of adjustments anglers can make to improve their catch rate in the daytime. Since these fish are constantly on the move they can tell when a boat is overhead; especially on sunny days, its like when a cloud goes over the sun. This is why they typically don't hit directly under the boat, until night fall. Anglers can improve their catch rate by casting away from the boat and not driving over the spot they think the fish are in. Additionally, anglers typically are not comfortable fishing deep water. And in bright conditions (anytime other than dusk or dawn) walleye move to deeper water outside where most anglers are fishing and definitely deeper than where they fish just before dark. Anglers should stay mobile while covering the various depths until they find the fish rather than just fishing their "hotspot". In clear water lakes walleye can be <10 ft during low light and move to >25 ft by the middle of the day.

Taking these few bass fishing ideas with you on your next walleye trip will surely put more fish in the boat!


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