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Having trouble catching trout at your local lake?

Viewer question: I have been having trouble catching trout at my local lake. The lake has been stocked with rainbow and Nebraska Tailwalkers up to about 8 in size. The lake is very clear and the water temp is around 60* right now. There’s a lot of underwater vegetation all over the lake with steep drop off closer to the center of the lake. The lake is about 80 feet deep. I am thinking of trolling the lake. What would be the best trolling set up for the type of situation? Thank you. Jason.

Hi Jason,

Very nice to hear from you.

In this situation, with clear cool water, chances are the trout are hugging bottom. A very effective way to troll and stay close to bottom is to bottom bounce. (Click here for an article on bottom bouncing advantages, followed by a short video on bottom bouncing for trout)

This is where you would tie your main line to a 3-way swivel (such as the T-Turn) and then drop a short 1 to 2 foot line to your sinker. The, tie another leader line to your bait or lure and this line could vary in length, up to 3 feet.

Try staying out of the area with the vegetation, and troll on the outside (deeper side) of the vegetation and work the drop off area as well. Most likely, the trout will be in 15 to 30 feet of water (stay away from the 80 foot depth at this time)

If you have a decent wind blowing, you can even drift and bottom bounce. With the clear water you mentioned, the drifting technique will allow you to quietly cover water without spooking the trout. Trout get spooked very easily, so drifting can certainly help.

Otherwise, if you have an electric motor, that will also allow you to quietly troll along and still cover plenty of water.

One more thing to look for - if you have a small river or creek that feeds your lake, fish the mouth in front of that area and work your way back and forth to the drop off towards deeper water. This area will produce more oxygen and will attract the bait fish which in turn will attract the trout.

Thanks for taking time to write to us & as always, until next time, good luck and good fishing!


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