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Some indicators are your downrigger cables and your diver rods. You want your rigger cables strait off the back of the boat, if they are cocked to one side or the other you are cross current. If your rigger cables are strait and your diver rods are limp that is a good indicator that your going with the current and your lures are dead in the water. Witch ever direction I go if I don't have a down speed indicator on than I make sure those divers are pulling evenly off the back like they should.

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I have to agree but keep in mind your divers and stuff can be in one current and your cannon balls in another. Working temp breaks I have seen one side of the boat work one way and the other another. Having the probe really helps a lot as mine often is in search mode moving up and down there are times I won't even run a rod on it cause I am changing it so often that trying to fish it is a PITA and othe rtimes I will drop it into a zone I am happy in and let it run there for hours catching fish even if most of the fish come on the other rods that am am setting based on what I see on the probe. If you are going faster than the probe you are going down stream in the current my fav setup personally cause most fish face into the current. If the probe is going faster than you, you are going against the current with out the probe if you are going slow and the divers are peeled back and the riggers are blown back you are against the current.

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i guess ive never really paid that much attention to currents...if my riger cables are to the side then i will turn to straighten them...but other than that i pay attention to my down probe...but in the interest of improving my catch i listen to just about anything and if going straight into currents is the way to go i will try it....i talked to willis kerridge and he said he always fishes into current so i figure i will give it a shot

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Beside fishing where fish are, what Andy said is #1 importance to us.

What really sucks is when the bottom current is side ways to the wave action.

The wave and wind current will blow my Aluminum Crestliner sideways and tangle the rigger balls.

Jim, I really like your explanation also.

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I say this over and over and over, in person, in seminars, and online. In my opinion, currents and direction of troll is the MOST IMPORTANT aspect of Lake Michigan fishing. You can forget about your lure colors, rod choices, etc., as the majority of good catches vs. excellent and limit catches is the direction of troll! You can go out fishing, troll around in circles and catch a fair share of fish, but if you want to catch limits of fish and win tournaments consistently, you have to have a good troll.

Usually, the best troll is into the current. We (and many of the best on the lake) will troll for 10-15 miles if needed, to stay on "that" troll. This is the main reason why charter boats and lots of other guys don't like turning for smaller boats who are driving all over the place, especially in tournaments. We will also troll in one direction for a bit, pull lines and run back, reset and retroll through that same spot going the same direction as before, if needed. Why waste time going back 3 miles the wrong direction, and even worse, not catching any fish? But, as soon as that boat turns around as you were traveling before, you hit a double!!! An example of direction of troll and currents!!!

The earlier posts explained it pretty well, on how to determine where the current is coming from. We do not use a down temp/speed indicator. We do it all off the fish finder thermoclines, diver rods, and downrigger cables. That is just a personal choice. Otherwise, if you start paying close attention to the nearshore currents, as soon as you exit the pierheads, and the offshore currents, where you are fishing, you will greatly improve your catch rate!!!

Yes, there are different nearshore and offshore currents, as well as different currents within the water column. Lake Michigan has some great currents that are pretty similar to the oceans.

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I always fish into the current or quarter it ,this has proven over and over to be the best trolling direction.The best way to figure out current is to have a down speed such as fish hawk or some other unit. Other wise you can watch your dipsie rods when you go into the current they will pull harder and bend more.My opinon is that Down speed is the most importent variable for catching fish. hope this helps just my 2 cents. Jimmy

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hitman,

do i have this right? i should be going head on into the current? and my depth raider probe should should be showing faster than my surface speed? any help would be great. i am fairly new to running my own boat and actually paying atention to what isgoing on.

thanks,

todd

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Yes, you should be traveling directly into the current, or at least quartering it, and your down speed should be faster than your surface speed. That is what it is all about, your down speed is the speed your lure is traveling at, so the surface speed doesn't always tell the truth or tell you much of anything.

Yes and no, usually the current and the waves are similar, but some days, the current can be opposite of the waves and wind. For example, the upper water column current could be the same as the waves, but the lower water column (where you are fishing) could be the complete opposite. These are the days a bumpy ride occurs. Also, the water and current can only travel so far South and North until it has to turn around and head back the other way. For example, if it has been a North wind and current for 6 straight days and you go out fishing and the wind is still North, the current may be coming from the South because the water has traveled for so long to the South, it has to eventually turn back around and head back where it was going from. In the oceans, the currents can continue to go for much longer distances, but on our little lake the water can only travel for so long in one direction.

Also, an easy way to eliminate wasted time is to stop in the morning and troll around in a circle to figure out the current while using your probe. Another way is to set a couple lines (riggers and divers) every morning and do the same thing (troll around in a circle) and then figure out your troll and then finish setting all your lines.

Hope this helps!!!

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The waves do not indicate current, I just follow the downrigger balls and use my sonar to watch the ball depths. I fish in every direction of the current, usually if conditions allow you can make one circle and figure out what direction the bite is at. You have to keep in mind if you are fishing into the current you have to slow way down, if a 2.7 mph speed for the lures is the goal you may have to troll at less than a mile to compensate for the water moving below you, same going with the current, I've run at 4-5 mph to keep the lures going the proper speed under some conditions. I use the corner pumphandles to tell me how the lures are working at depth. The probes may help a little bit, but with the blow back they are running on a angle so you just can't goto a speed on the probe and have the lure running at that speed. Let the fish talk to you, when they hit look at your speed and direction and continue on or if your structure fishing make the turn and duplicate the run.

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