Lake Trout Fishing Tips:
Lake Trout are a resource that few people take advantage of. One of
the big reasons is people don't like to fish with the traditional
equipment and don't find any luck fishing with traditional methods.
Lake Trout are a ton of fun to catch on light-action equipment and
they also taste fantastic and have a mild taste that is far superior
to Rainbow Trout or Salmon. With the methods below you will discover
that Lake Trout are not hard to catch and can be so much fun.
Bringing a big heavy fish up from the depths creates a level of
excitement that is hard to put into words and a great addition to the
adventure-factor of your vacation.
In the spring from Ice-out to a couple weeks after the Lake Trout
are right under the surface. This is when guests catch most of them
and have fun catching them on their Walleye rod. This seems to be the
best time of year to catch them but to experienced Lake Trout hunters
the spring is actually one of the hardest times to catch them because
they are spread out all over the lake and not concentrated in the
holes or just above the thermocline.
If you do find yourself fishing on a lake in early spring and you
know there are Lake Trout then the best thing to do is find a shoal,
sandy bay or a sandbar. In the spring, the water warms up faster over
sandy shallow areas and this attracts minnows. The Lake Trout don't
like the warm water but will sit off the shoals or sandbars in deeper
darker water waiting for minnows to venture out to the edge where
they are easy to pick off. Casting with Little Cleos and spinners is
the best way to get them. The Lake Trout will also be moving along
the shore looking for minnows. In this case you may want to troll for
In the spring Lake Trout are very sensitive to the sound of the
motor so trolling behind the boat is not very effective. As you troll
into the area the Lake Trout will move out to the sides and they can
quickly move 50 feet or more to give your boat a wide birth. With
this in mind try casting out behind the boat at a 45 degree angle and
then let the boat pull the line straight and then slowly reel in and
cast out again. You will catch 10 times as many trout casing out
sideways vs. just dragging a lure behind the boat. Even if you are
using an electric motor you will still find more success casting out
Deep Water Summer Lake Trout:
In late spring the Lake Trout will be in a transition stage where
they are found at different depths but by the time summer rolls
around the Lake Trout will move down deep. In small lakes the Lake
Trout will be located in the deeper holes and spend most of the
summer near springs. In bigger lakes the Lake Trout generally stay
just above the 53-degree thermocline. Lake Trout will go below the
thermocline but oxygen levels are much lower and the Lake Trout go
dormant and do not feed as often as the trout above the thermocline.
The thermocline is usually located between 45 and 60 feed deep on
Traditional methods for fishing down deep are using lead-core line,
downriggers, bait-walkers and Dipsy Divers. All these methods will
catch fish but they are flawed and not very effective or they are not
fun. If you have a small fishing boat then the best way to fish for
Lakers is to back-troll as slow as you can with a 3-way swivel,
6-pound test line and your Walleye stick. 6-pound test mono line is
thin and causes very little friction with the water so you can fish
deep without having lots of line out. To fish 50 feet deep you need a
2 oz. weight and a light flutter spoon such as a Sutton Silver Spoon
or a MooseLook Spoon.
There are hundreds of light flutter spoons on the
market. Dark blue & silver, dark green and silver and just silver are
the best colors on bright sunny days. If the sky is little cloudy
than go to a copper colored spoon. If a low pressure system comes in
go Walleye fishing as the trout will not be feeding.
Tie 2 feet of line from your 3-way swivel to a regular clip swivel
and then attach your lure. Then tie another 2.5 feet of line from
your 3-way swivel to your 2-oz. weight. Get a slow back-troll and
slowly let line out a foot at a time. If you are traveling slow your
line should be almost straight down. Letting out about 55 feet of
line means you should be down around 50 feet. One full reverse reel
should be about one foot of line on most reels. You will need a depth
finder to mark what depth the fish are at. Lake Trout are usually
around 50 feet deep in the summer but in the evening will come
shallower and sometimes can be found as shallow as 35-feet deep in
the summer. In a small spring-fed Lake the Lake Trout could be
shallow all year.
You want to use dark green line as it has low visibility. You want
the line to your sinker to be a little bit longer than the line to
your lure so that if you get a snag your lure stays off the bottom
and does not get snagged as well. Just troll until you get a hit.
When using a 3-way swivel you have to set the hook hard. Keep your
drag set for 6-pound test line and if the fish wants to take off and
rip 50 feet of line off your reel, let him.
Lake Trout hit best first thing in the morning and in the evening.
During the day they will turn on-and-off like a light switch and some
times they will only feed for 10 or 15 minutes and then stop dead
again. You just have to be out there trolling and hope that they
start feeding. Lake Trout like bright sunny weather with high
pressure. A low pressure system can cause them to stop feeding for
days. They are a challenge to catch on bigger lakes. Just a short
drive from camp are a number of small Lake Trout lakes that are
stuffed with trout and you will find great success using these light
tackle methods. There is less food in smaller lakes so the Lake Trout
are more often feeding than not.