Trout Trolling Techniques
Clipping my 6-pound mainline to the downrigger, I felt a bit out
of place. I was used to doing this on ocean-going salmon excursions, not
in shallow lakes for trout. After I dropped the 5-pound ball to 28
feet, it didn’t take long before the first strike.
Smile Blades are an excellent terminal gear
attractor that fish love. They also offer little water resistance when
the fight is on. Photo by Scott Haugen.
A quick snap of the wrist, and the fight was on — a 2-pound trout
and myself, locked in battle. It was great! Not only for the fight, but
also because the ‘rigger got the Wedding Ring spinner down to where the
fish were holding.
With basic trolling gear, that would have been tough to achieve.
Later that day, my two sons fished the same lake with me.
Eight-year-old Braxton chose Mack’s Flash Lites, while his younger
brother Kazden, 6, picked Mack’s Hot-Wings tipped with half a night
Both are low-profile setups that allow for easy trolling. And when the hit comes, you feel it.
“This is a huge one,” yelled Kazden. “He’s really fighting hard!”
The aggressive strike had nearly yanked the rod from his hands. Minutes
later, he was holding up a 4-pound rainbow. He couldn’t get his line
back in the water fast enough.
With the new fishing technology, we now have a series of
lightweight options, from downriggers to terminal gear, to flashy
attractors and more. Trolling light for trout has never been more
popular and productive.
On today’s market, there are many
attractors used for trolling, from simple one-piece plastic flashers to
multiple metal-blade setups, to bendable Mylar and more. Some meet
specific angler needs. But which one to use often comes down to personal
preference. Other factors that influence which trolling rig to take
include what lake you’re fishing, at what depth, water visibility and
light penetration, the amount of fishing pressure and whether you’re
going after educated fish or fresh planters.