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Preferred body bait techniques.

533 Views 2 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  STEINFISHSKI
On a tangent to Beaves thread, when you guys are pulling the body baits in the spring, do you prefer to use a bait that runs the desired depth without assistance, or do you prefer to put a lure where you need it by using downriggers and/or snap weights?

If you wanted to fish at 20ft down, would you rather use a bait that normally runs shallw, with enough drop weight to get it down to 20ft, or would you rather just use a bait that runs at 20ft on its own?

Starting to wonder if it is best to pick up husky jerks and a snap weight kit, or just get a good assortment of husky jerks and a good assortment of down deep husky jerks.
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I'll run stick baits mostly unweighted off the Roach in line boards, riggers, or dipseys. I use 2 kinds of baits shallow or deep runners. Smelt or Alewife imitations sizes and patterns.

In close during the spring I'm fishing most rods in the shallow water, in the top 15 fow, no matter how deep I'm fishing, as many fish can be found on or near the surface especially at low light periods. This time of year I like smaller baits trolled 1.0-1.5 mph. Natural colors in clear water, rattles and flourescents in stained water.

If the shallow baits dont produce, I'll switch colors, styles, or put on a deep runner. These baits have a different action and can be fished deeper by simply lengthening the lead. I like 75'-125' back with the shallow runners, and 15'-80' back with the deep runners.

If I want to get one deeper than that I put one on a rigger or dipsey diver. The slide divers would work well for this application because you can still use the longer leads.

Tips: A few (3, #7) splitshots 8-12" above the lip of the shallow runners helps them achieve a slightly deeper dive characteristic.

Replace the brass split rings for lip and hooks with stainless split rings for trolling the Great lakes. Also replace hooks with a stronger ones as some styles can straighten out easy especially when trolled catching salmonoids. Try to use similar sizes as not to dampen the action of the lure. Make sure you tie to a split ring, snap, or loop knot so the lure can swim freely as well.
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