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Question, I've never trolled Erie for Walleye's, and want to try it.
I have 4 downriggers and a few planner boards.
Do people use downriggers for the Walleye ?, or mainly boards ?, or both ?.

Thanks Kevin
 

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Question, I've never trolled Erie for Walleye's, and want to try it.
I have 4 downriggers and a few planner boards.
Do people use downriggers for the Walleye ?, or mainly boards ?, or both ?.

Thanks Kevin
no need for Downriggers , I run inline planer boards , bandits, flicker minnows, worms harness, I prefer small dispys with spoons , lots on shorts this year but can always gets limits
 

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Generally no not in the western basin. It's not really deep enough to mess with. Crank baits dive plenty deep enough. Tru trips or dipseys or in line weights or snap weights depending on what type of trolling you are doing.
 

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You will catch just as many walleyes with downriggers as you will with all the other stuff mentioned above that you don't already have. We've been doing this for years, in the Western basin, and quite often the biggest fish of the day come off the downriggers. A lot of guys don't use them because they don't think it is worth the trouble. I hate the mess of worms, and I love downriggers and Slide divers....and pulling in walleye behind boards is not exactly fun.

Standard lead back off the ball is 30'. You can run spoons, stickbaits, hot n tots, Salmos, hell...whatever you want and it'll work just fine. We use a pinch pad release that is tethered about 10" off the ball with 50# mono, or you can also use a snubber between the ball and the release. Doing this will make it easier to see when you are pulling a small fish as the snubber/tether will stretch and the rod tip will bounce. Put the line about 1/4" into the pad. Load the rod as tight as you can and keep your eyes on them. Blacks/Chamberlain releases work even better for this application, as you can adjust the release tension to very light while still keeping the load tension very strong. If you have recently caught a fish off a board rod but haven't on your downrigger, check them. You can drag dinks around if you are not careful.

In a perfect world on my boat I would run 2 DR's, 2 Lite Bite Slide Divers, and 4 Offshore boards for walleyes on Erie, which would allow me to run 8 rods and not take up a football field swath with my setup, making it easier to turn as well as avoid other boats. Running DR's and SD's is far more efficient, as both can be re-set in about 1/3 the amount of time it takes to let a crankbait 100' back, attach the board, then track the board into place.

Good luck....run those riggers.
 
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