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Andrew Martinsen's Walleye Fishing Update

River Walleye Fishing

Crankbaits and More Can Catch Walleyes in Rivers

During the spring, when the walleye is spawning, rivers are a particular hotspot for walleye fishing. However, this can cause problems for anglers as some spots, such as dams, become particularly crowded, because typically these are the places that the walleye will travel to when spawning.

Therefore, the first thing to consider when heading out to catch walleye in the spring is to avoid the crowded rivers, especially dams on rivers, which are particular favorites among anglers. Some professional anglers espouse the benefits of moving up to ten miles downstream, where large clusters of walleye can be found away from the crowds.

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It is important to bear in mind that although dams are areas of concentration for walleye, this is not the only place that they can be found. In rivers, walleye will use sand or rock flats and many other locations. So, do not be tempted to follow the masses. You stand a much better chance of finding a good catch in an area of quiet.

When fishing a river, it is a good idea to assess the structural make-up of the water and establish prime locations. For example, rock ledges sandbars or even current breaks. Rather than trying to fish the whole river, concentrate on these spots first and you might be surprised by how many walleye you find.

Numerous anglers that take to the rivers use minnows and jigs. However, this is another issue where following the crowd may not be the best choice. That's not to say that a jig and minnow combination is not a perfectly good presentation for catching river walleye, but it is not the only option, as is sometimes claimed.

Some professional anglers choose to troll crankbaits during their spring search for river walleye. Lead-core trolling, in particular, allows you to cover a reasonably large area and is perfect for those walleye that are staying deep, as you can fish within four inches of the riverbed.

After you have established the position of your walleye, you may then prefer to experiment with other techniques, such as vertical or hair jigs. Alternatively, you may like to consider a three-way swivel presentation, which proves very successful for some anglers.

Perhaps the most important thing to remember while fishing the river for spring walleye is that the walleye are still hungry. They may be spawning, but they will also be feeding. So, be sure to look for not only the current breaks, but also the forage areas. In rivers, a walleye's main sources of food are gizzard shad or the emerald shiner. So, it may be a good idea to arm yourself with lots of plastic jigs, which will mimic the walleye's source of food.

So, if you are planning to head to the river in search of walleye, remember to stock-up on crankbaits and practice your lead-core trolling. Most importantly, however, it is crucial that you realize which presentations work and which do not. Therefore, when they start to bite, determine how and what you did to achieve this success, because once you crack the right formula you could be catching some monster fish.

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