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Remember back when dinosaurs roamed the shores of the mighty Saint Clair River and we would drift with the current with crawler harnesses. No electric trolling motors, no electronics?I know, I know, the gobies, the wind, blah, blah, blah. But have any of you tried it lately. I have not. If you have, how did it work out? Saw a boat just drifting with bottom bouncers south of Beardsley's around 4 years ago. They were doing well as far as I could tell. Couple of older fellas in a hand lining type boat. It was obvious they knew what they were doing. I think their names were Fred and Barney.
 

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We do that for a few drifts when we are using harnesses. But wind direction and speed do make a big difference. Our rule witch seems to work for us is no matter if you are drifting, using a electric trolling motor, or back trolling with a gas motor, for us we like to go fast enough down stream so your line is at a 25 to 45 degree angle on the side of the boat. If its straight down or starts to go under the boat your going to slow and your spinner is not working like it should and you start getting all wrapped around your sinker. Also if you have a lot of line out and your at say a 60 degree angle or greater we tend to get a lot more snags. Not telling anyone how to fish just saying what works for us. You must be able to feel bottom and just tick it then pick up some slowly then slowly let down and let it tick bottom again. If you let it drag to much you will get a lot of snags or if you don't feel bottom you have to much line out or your not close to bottom. Have plenty of harnesses with you because even when we do it the right way you still get snags. Sorry this is long but it seems to work the best for us. Good luck out there, be safe, and help a fellow fisherman when you get a chance.
 

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And also (back in the day) we didn't have bottom bouncers. We would tie the harness directly to a pencil sinker and then just "drift".
Always seemed to catch fish. There were no zebra muscles or Gobies back then either. Furthermore, we didn't have jigs either. We would chug with a gob of worms or a strip of K-Mart shopping bag.
 

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Daughter and I picked up 10 doing the old time just drift. The wind was doing all sorts of things which made it hard to do the modern way to catch walleye. I gave her a 3oz. sinker with a red bead leader. She had 2 in the boat before I even got a line in the water. I grabbed a bouncer and put on a lime green leader and started to get fish as well. Then out of nowhere came a 100 mile an hour north wind that ended our day. Going out later today and do the same thing and see what happens. Hope the just drift thing is still working, so much easier and relaxing. For the record, daughter out fished daddy 6 to 4. She had a ball catching, but wanted nothing to do with the cleaning part.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
And also (back in the day) we didn't have bottom bouncers. We would tie the harness directly to a pencil sinker and then just "drift".
Always seemed to catch fish. There were no zebra muscles or Gobies back then either. Furthermore, we didn't have jigs either. We would chug with a gob of worms or a strip of K-Mart shopping bag.
I still have dozens of 2 oz. pencil sinkers, along with the molds, electric melting pot, and lead ingots for making them that belonged to my dad. We would tie a 3-way swivel to the main line, a 24' dropper line with a pencil sinker to the swivel and a 36" long crawler harness to the other part of the 3 way. Then like Spur said, we'd drift with the current and hope the wind wasn't too bad. Simpler times, but not always better!
 

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I can use some advice on this topic. We fish with 3 of us using bottom bouncers. 2 guys in the back and one guy on the bow. We are all using 2 oz bottom bouncers on the St Clair River. The guys fishing on the bow of the boat always catches less fish. Why is this? Should we be using a heavier weight when fishing on the bow etc etc? All advice would be appreciated. Thanks
 

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I can use some advice on this topic. We fish with 3 of us using bottom bouncers. 2 guys in the back and one guy on the bow. We are all using 2 oz bottom bouncers on the St Clair River. The guys fishing on the bow of the boat always catches less fish. Why is this? Should we be using a heavier weight when fishing on the bow etc etc? All advice would be appreciated. Thanks
I see just the opposite. On my boat I run line counters so I can tell everyone how much line to let out or reel in to make sure we don't tangle lines with someone having too much or too little out. Once we get dialed in on color and speed, the front rods take more fish because they get to the fish first.
 

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I see just the opposite. On my boat I run line counters so I can tell everyone how much line to let out or reel in to make sure we don't tangle lines with someone having too much or too little out. Once we get dialed in on color and speed, the front rods take more fish because they get to the fish first.
That does make a lot of sense. We don’t use line counters. But we usually let more less line out in the front to help with crossing lines.
 

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If you're letting less line out up front that guy is very likely not on bottom. Use a heavier weight up front. Lighter weight in the back
If you're letting less line out up front that guy is very likely not on bottom. Use a heavier weight up front. Lighter weight in the back
Thank you, I will try a 3oz up front and stick with 2oz in the back.
 

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Just spent over $50 on bottom bouncers 2 and 3 oz. and a few harnesses, I got the heavier duty bottom bouncers with the extra long wire. Hope I made the right choice. Going to SCR in a few hours. tightlinesyall
 

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I see just the opposite. On my boat I run line counters so I can tell everyone how much line to let out or reel in to make sure we don't tangle lines with someone having too much or too little out. Once we get dialed in on color and speed, the front rods take more fish because they get to the fish first.
I tend to do the same with guests. I tell them roughly 1.5 times the depth and that is usually in the ballpark for a 45 degree angle. And I have the one friend that invariably can't feel bottom and ends up with 120 feet of line out in 20 feet of water.
 

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Solera, If you go with your idea of running a 3 oz. BB in front, and the two at the rear of your boat run 2 or 2-1/2 oz., that would help get that front man down o the bottom without worrying about any line tangles, and he should start catching some fish too.
 

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This is normal on my boat also. But will run 1/2 oz heavier on the front.
I'm piloting the boat from the front and watching those rods. If I ran heavier up front, I couple easily be going speeds too fast to keep the back rods touching bottom. But if I was piloting from the back, I definitely would be running heavier up front. It's just easier for me to watch the bow sonar for speed and depth while sitting up there than to do it from the cockpit.

And I also try to use the minimum weight I can so I don't go too fast for the given water conditions. About now is when the water temp is high enough to switch over to 3 oz bouncers a d take the "governor" off my boat speed. When the water temp is still in the 50s and the wind is blowing downstream, it's easy to go too fast, and if I can stay ticking bottom with 2 oz, I'm probably going too fast.
 
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