Kayak Trolling Tips for the Modern Angler!

No fishing experience is complete until you’ve tried a little kayak trolling. Trolling from a kayak generally takes a little practice, but eventually the practice pays off.

There are two choices in reels; the spin reel and the overhead reel. As a halibut enthusiast, I’ve always enjoyed a spin reel, but the halibut is more like pulling out an old log from the bottom of the ocean than tasting the challenge of a real fighting fish.

spin reel
Zebco Gold Series Spincast Reel
overhead fishing reel
Shimano star-drag levelwind trolling reel

If you’re willing to sink in the money for kayak trolling, there are some great spin wheels out there that can take on the most ferocious fish, such as the ‘Tuff Tackle’ 10000 Diablo Sniper, which can handle 80-130 pounds and 60 pounds of drag. Pretty impressive for a spin reel, and it comes with a fifteen year warranty!

If you want to steam line your expense account, an overhead reel will give you the same performance without costing an arm and a leg.

While live bait is generally preferred, it is possible to troll from your kayak with spinners and lures. Cruising speed should be determined by the conditions and the lure you are trolling. A good way to find out how fast you should paddle is to drop the lure over the side, then observe the action. Start by using jigs. When they start to bump the bottom, you have a good measurement of how fast you should paddle.

The advantage of kayak trolling is the amount of territory you cover in presenting your lure, compared to casting.

Some kayakers set as many as four lines, rubber banding each one. When the band breaks, they know the fish is on.

Nearly any fish can be trolled, depending on the bottom structure. If you choose a sand beach, you eliminate most chances of snagging. The great advantage of kayak trolling is, even in an area where snagging is common, you can always paddle around the spot to the right angle for pulling the lure out.

Lake Michigan Angler: Trolling from a kayak in a marina

Another advantage of a kayak is that the casting distance of a lure isn’t important, so many of the lures that don’t cast well can be used. Even at a high rate of paddling, a kayak is slow. When fishing from a larger boat, all too often, a fish will follow a lure only to turn away at the last minute, as the timing was just a little too fast.

Kayak trolling is best in calm conditions.

The surge and drift motion, characteristic of a kayak, gives bait a natural looking presentation in the water. Don’t be surprised if you begin reeling in fish within minutes after setting your line!

For fresh water trolling, flies are an electric component. It doesn’t take an expensive rod and reel to troll flies; any basic set up will do. Nor does trolling with flies demand a strenuous work out.Watch Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download

Paddling gently around the lake, with frequent pauses to imitate a minnow or aquatic insect is sure to catch that lake trout’s attention. You can also attract bass by presenting wet flies. Troll along the edges of weed beds for small mouth and large-mouth bass.

You need to keep a sharp eye on your lure, though, when trolling through weed lines. You don’t want weeds clogging your hooks, so it’s best to pull them in now and then to clear them.

rock shoal
Rock Shoal

To work rock shoals, you can use deeper diving crankbait, although dragging spinner rigs tipped with nightcrawlers, minnows or leeches usually give the best performance. To make sure your spinner rig is running right; check it at boat side first. Paddle at various speeds to determine the right pace to keep the blades spinning.

Walleyes come into the shadows to feed at dusk and can also be trolled with nightcrawlers and minnows. If you’re going to do a little evening fishing, be sure to keep a flashlight handy for handling lures and to let any motor boats passing by know you’re there. This way, you’ll have a safe and enjoyable night fishing.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *