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New To Salmon Fishing


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Hi guys,

I am just getting started on the big lake, having fished addictively since I could hold a rod. I purchased a 16 1/2 foot Lund with a 60hp 4 stroke that I hope will take me out in the late summer and in the spring. For now however, if I only have three rods, how would you recommend me setting them up?

I do not have a downrigger yet. I may have one by the weekend.

Clyde

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three dipsey rods would probly be the least expensive way,but you will need some sturdy rod holders to run them.

make sure you understand the lake and have all the required saftey equipment before you venture out,i want to see everyone have fun and catch fish but we all want to see ya at the launch braggin bout it.

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I second the Dipsy recommendation. It's an inexpensive way to start. As mentioned you will need some sturdy rod holders. You will also need some sturdy rods. Dipsys pull very hard, and there are rods made just for them. You may also want to consider a Leadcore setup run of an inline planer board. Welcome aboard Clyde.

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Thanks guys. I am working out the options. The dipseys are out until my sturdy base for the rod holders comes from Lund. Two of my rods are 9 foot 6 Firewolf and I think are made for the dipseys. I like minnow's idea until I have the boat more adequately equipped.

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Sounds like you have 2 diver rods and a possible a rigger rod. You do not have the sturdy bases, so divers are out of the question for now. Divers are great because you can target a variety of depths.

So now you have to make a decision on what depth you are going to target with those rods. Currently the fish are 10' and deeper, because of the cold water that is in. I caught a couple of fish on 2 colors of lead core on Sunday. I started to mark a thermocline on Sunday, 20' down in 110FOW. This will probably change over the next few days because of the warm sunny weather and no wind. The fish will move deeper to stay in the cooler water.

Knowing you are going to need to target a deeper depth, you will need a way to get your baits down deeper. I would pick up a full core of lead core. A full core has 10 colors of lead. With this, you can split it between two rods or put it all on one. You can make any combinations of colors between the two rods. You will get between 4-5' of depth per color. 5 colors of lead will get your bait down appoximately 25'.

Michigan Stinger came out with dive bombs this year. These are an add on planing weight system you can add to your line. They are available in 4 sizes. 1oz, 2oz, 3oz, and 4oz. A 4oz dive bomb will get apporiximately 30' of depth. The exact depths achieved by each size is still unkown.

With a combination of lead core and dive bombs you can target a variety of depths, without needing 10 rods. ;)

If you are just getting into salmon fishing, I would highly recommend Keating on Kings, by Dan Keating. This is one of the best books I have read on salmon fishing! I have a couple of copies left if you are interested in one of them.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks to great advice found all over this site I caught my first fish from my own boat Saturday morning out of Muskegon. :D I took a lake trout on 5 colors in 50 fow on a dark blue dreamweaver at 8:00 am. I am waiting for my mounts for downriggers and dipsey diver rod holders. They should be in this week. In any case, thanks to you all for the assistance. I hope to bring more good news to the site in three weeks. Yes, vacation was planned at a bad time, but who can say no to the Rockies.

Clyde

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Thanks to great advice found all over this site I caught my first fish from my own boat Saturday morning out of Muskegon. :D I took a lake trout on 5 colors in 50 fow on a dark blue dreamweaver at 8:00 am. I am waiting for my mounts for downriggers and dipsey diver rod holders. They should be in this week. In any case, thanks to you all for the assistance. I hope to bring more good news to the site in three weeks. Yes, vacation was planned at a bad time, but who can say no to the Rockies.

Clyde

Congrats Clyde! There was eleven us out Saturday morning fishing the Stinger Challenge. I caught the majority of our fish in the 50-60' range. We were on channel 72. Normally, I monitor 68 while I am out.

Word of caution. Watch out when running lead core in close proximity with other boats.

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Thanks Mike,

One embarrassing correction to make to my entry. When I looked closer at the picture I see that it was a King that I caught, not a laker. Anyway, I take seriously the word of caution on the lead core. It got a little tight out toward the net on Saturday.

I hope to be a part of the stinger challenge next year. It looked like a lot of fun for you guys.

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One way to accelerate your learning curve is to hop on board with someone else. Everyone has something that you can learn from. One person may do things one way, and another may do it a different way. In the end you will become a more versatile fisherman, with an arsenal of weapons.

Dont be afraid to ask questions here!

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Here's a question other newcomers may be interested in: What reels are recommended for downriggers and topwater lures for steelhead? Can I get away with Penn 209 and 309s? Do I need line counters for those applications? Lastly, Does anyone have reels they would like to sell in order to buy better ones for themselves?

Good luck to all on the water this weekend. I won't be able to get back out for about a month.

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