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Rookie needs some help


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Hello everybody, ill be fishing out of Saugatuck this upcoming weekend and need some help. I'm only 19 and have all the gear i should need to be catching fish, but haven't had much luck this year. Can anyone give me some pointers for this weekend? ill be fishing with 2 riggers and 2 dipsys most likely. I got a lot of lures, flasher and flies also. Any specific things i should be looking for on my fish finder? and what depths you think would be optimal for this weekend. Any tips would be greatly appreciated!

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With what you mentioned I'd go out and find where the warm water and cold water meet like DarkMind said. You're best bet is to just run the riggers high down 25-45 feet early and maybe a little deeper later in the day. Then with the dipseys an RV Moonshine Agent orange has been hot and so has an RV bloody nose 110 back. The fish are all scattered so you'll have to get lucky to find a pod of nice kings. If you had leadcore then you'd be able to find a lot of steelhead out 220-250 FOW. It's tough out there right now. You really are going to have to work to get some a nice box.

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With what you mentioned I'd go out and find where the warm water and cold water meet like DarkMind said. You're best bet is to just run the riggers high down 25-45 feet early and maybe a little deeper later in the day. Then with the dipseys an RV Moonshine Agent orange has been hot and so has an RV bloody nose 110 back. The fish are all scattered so you'll have to get lucky to find a pod of nice kings. If you had leadcore then you'd be able to find a lot of steelhead out 220-250 FOW. It's tough out there right now. You really are going to have to work to get some a nice box.

What he said, I am hoping that the fish will get a break from the rapid weather changes, 3 to 4 days of constant pressure and wind direction, will set up some temperature lines and the fish will be active along those temp breaks. I agree also that the Lead core presentations have be hot all spring. Last sunday all of our fish came on 4 color and 10 color leadcore and 300 copper rigs . I Have been running all spoons and those are fishermans choice. I usuall stick with stinger and stingrays. Glow bloody nose and glow Christmas have been on fire all spring and the glow jaw breaker has caught a lot of steelhead on 4 and 6 color leadcore. Watch the currents and find the troll direction that works and stay with it.

Welcome to the site.

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Thanks everyone! just a few more questions, how much of a difference in water temp should i be looking at? 5-10 degrees? and how much do lead core line go for ? you can put that on any salmon fishing reel i assume right? hopefully i can snag a couple fish for dinner this weekend.

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Lead core is pretty inexpensive. You will need a decent size reel as you will have leader, core and backer. The temp break if it sets up well will be very noticeable. Look for the 5 degree or more jump. Do yourself one favor though, catch em don't snag em! The DNR frowns on the snagging. Welcome to the site.

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Lots of the fish caught off Holland in the last week have been up high -- top 25' of the water column out in 170 to 250 feet of water. Many of those have been on short leadcores -- 2 or 3 colors (20 & 30 feet). These short cores can be put on most reels used for downriggers by taking off 50 yards of mono and splicing in the core. These have been especially good for Steelhead with trolling speeds of around 3 mph.

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What he said but I have to add that last sat off of holland our biggest fish was landed on copper with a a meat rig. Pink and orange colors provided most of our action on 7 colors if I remember right. Still new to this myself.

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The best presentations right now are 4 to 7 colors of lead core, any 30 or 40 Okuma reel will work for these, you don't need line counters on the leadcore as you put it all in the water and then attach a board. let the board out to the side and wait. Be sure to let the shortest core out furthest to the side creating a V from deep to shallow going out. Set your drags light enough with the clicker on so that a strike takes line and you can detect it before it gets off. Be sure to bring the board to the boat with the rod tip low, and you won't have problems with the board diving.

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Your set up should result in at least a few fish. My first setup was similar. We had 3 riggers and 4 dipsys (2 per side one set on 1 and one set on 3) shortly after we added 4 lead cores. 2-5color and 2-10 color and our catch increased. Then we made the jump to copper. The sink rate charts reveal there is very little difference between 32# an 45#. Our catch easily doubled with the majority of fish coming on 300' of copper. If I were you I'd pass on leadcore and put your money into some copper of varying lengths. Right now the fish are high but come July/august once the lake stratifies(creates a thermocline) your coppers will catch lots. Now that I fish of a smaller boat I use a spread of only 4 coppers and 1or 2 dipsys. And I catch fish. I also would recommend the book "keating on king" by dan keating. The book was paramount in my education of big lake fishing

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Very good to know. I was mistaken thinking I had to fight the whole time even while bringing in the board. Which was just making more work for myself. Now I know. And knowing is half the battle. GI JOE

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  • 2 weeks later...

thanks everyone! ended up doing farely well, caught 3 steelhead and 1 15# king, went 4/6 on the morning and look to do a lot better next time i go out

again thanks for all the help, definatly investing in some coppers soon

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Very good to know. I was mistaken thinking I had to fight the whole time even while bringing in the board. Which was just making more work for myself. Now I know. And knowing is half the battle. GI JOE

I was mistaken also. This is gonna be helpful info using the boards.

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Hey man 4 for 6 with a 15lber beats my first 6 trips.

Read the reports and follow pattern between em. Depths temperatures colors etc. You will sometimes find a pattern between successful outings reported. That along with looking for temp breaks will help you find fish each trip. If your really not sure then a west troll with a little north/south in it is a good way to cover water and find fish. If you get a hit then turn north/south and see if you can get more hits.

Speed for me is my biggest issue as I dont have a speed probe. Making wide "S" turns can help you zone in on a specific speed or direction the fish are hitting at. If most of your hits are on the rods on the inside of the turn then slow down a bit when you go straight. the opposite for outside of turns.

Don't always follow the pack either. I often do better on busy days by going off in LA LA land by myself.

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