Key Presentations For Invisible Fish #2
By Capt. Jim Hirt
Day to day anglers are looking for more action. This past season we came up with a system that increased our numbers dramatically. When your looking for fish suspended in open water this technique will put more fish in the cooler. Fish locators never tell the complete story. The cone of the transducer will not show shallow fish. Most anglers will not work tackle for fish they cannot see. A proven fact is, when motor trolling, shallow fish go around the boat to avoid the turbulence and noise.
The challenge of the elements.
Please let us continue with presentations deeper than ten feet. Article #1 of this series explained a dynamite answer for fish in the top ten feet. Reread this article if you can. On Lake Michigan and many large lakes the cold water is always available. Wind and currents move it up or down to create the constant challenge of finding the location of your target species preferred temperature. West wind on the west shore moves warm water out and the cold water from deeper depths moves in. Even in the hottest months of the year we find cold water near the surface. The thermo cline or layer of water with acceptable temperatures for Chinook salmon may be anywhere in the water column. If you don't fish salmon this same system will work on all species.
Electronics part of the puzzle.
When the fish locator does not show marks in the thermo cline it may be the fish are going around all the tackle you are running behind the boat. Downriggers and most other tackle set up a field of turbulence and electrical energy directly behind them. This may turn the fish off. My answer to this is determine the layer of water you wish to work and run stealth tackle at that depth to lessen the turbulence and noise. You must know the exact depth where you expect to find your fish of choice. Allow me to tell you of a tool I have used for the last two years with great success. A great product out in the market place for this purpose is the Depth Raider. This unit offers a probe that you connect to a special downrigger cable giving you speed and temp at the lure to depths of 200 feet. This information is sent to an easy to read display. I was very impressed with Curt Kell of Kell Laboratories the innovator of this product. His attention to quality and customer satisfaction sets him apart in the industry. The Depth Raider will set the standard for this type of product for years to come. To get information on this product call Curt at 262-534-2202.
Back to ten to fifty down presentation
The depth of your target has been located now let's get on the action! Fortunately I can run over 14 rods, which offers me the opportunity to work water from top to bottom. When the angler is limited to three rods then focus on the targets favorite temperature. If you have additional rods run them above in the warmer water and below in the colder water. To attain precision control of all your lines I recommend two methods. For depths from ten to fifty feet leadcore is the answer. This presentation will work when all others are dead. The basics of leadcore are simple.
What do you need?
The most expensive part is the reel. It must have enough line capacity to handle the leadcore line plus Seaguar fluorocarbon and Power Pro 50 pound for a total of anywhere from 300 yards for a half core to 600 yards two cores. I run my half cores or five colors on a reel that will hold 300 yards of 20 pound test. This is the smallest reel a half core will fit on. Line counter reels are not necessary. Leadcore sinks at a rate of 4-5 feet per color. A half core will run about 24 feet deep. By working with these numbers you can get any depth you target. When loading this reel, start with 300 yards of Power Pro 50 pound then strip the lead out of the end of the leadcore and tie a Willis Knot to the leadcore. Finish with a Willis Knot and 30 feet of a 20-pound Seaguar fluorocarbon to a ball bearing cross lock snap. You will need a heavy action 8-foot rod to work with lead. You must run this with a planer board if you are going to use multiple set ups. Snap on your favorite spoon (the Vulcan from Badger Tackle is one of my favorites) and let out all of the line to the Power Pro. Then install your board so it does not release. I usually run three or more off each side of the boat. Very wide turns and low boat traffic are a must to avoid tangles and getting ran over. I set my drags light. When the reel starts to scream, adjust the drag as necessary. Reel in the line until you can reach the board and hand release it. Now the line is clear to bring in the fish. Some of my biggest fish are caught on this presentation.
The next article will explain effective stealth presentations for depths over fifty feet. You may find the lures discussed in this article at http://www.badgertackle.com Good Luck let's go fishing!! Come back to this Website often to read all my articles. Jim charters out of Milwaukee, WI. with Blue Max Charters. He can be reached at 414-828-1094. Summer I will be out on the lake fighting fish, however, I would appreciate a call over winter to chat about whatever questions you may have or just call and say hello. You may also visit my web site at http://www.bluemaxcharters.com Copyright© 2008, James J. Hirt, All Rights Reserved.