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Trolling For Smallmouth

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I am looking for some lures and/or presentations to use trolling for smallmouth bass. I have carpal tunnel in both wrists and it has been giving me some trouble when casting lures. Looking for some alternative fishing methods, thought I could give trolling a shot.

 

Thanks 

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I troll for them with small squarebill crankbaits. They dive about 10-12 ft at around 2.0 mph 

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I have never targeted bass while trolling,  but I have picked up a few out in the middle of nowhere on trolling spoons like mooselook wobbles, and shiners behind flashers/dodgers.  Flashy baitfish imitations should work hugging structure.

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Chartreuse spoons or any spoon would work.  But, you would Probally have to use a three way rig with like a 2-3 oz sinker.  Or a tadpol in-line wieght or other in line wieght   These spoons are made in Dearborn Mi. 

 

Or those pre rigged worms would work too.  My one grandpa is famous for throwing any thing out to troll with a night crawler attached to the treble whether it’s a spoon, twister tail, in-line spinners or whatever.  Catches a variety of fish though. 

 

Start at about 2.0 mph and go up in speed untill you catch fish. 

50A09201-7EA7-414C-9620-35FF83B6F699.jpeg

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Jerkbaits ~ 

There are enough makes & models to dial in the right running depth.

623309378_LCJerkbaits.thumb.jpg.82ce538b38fd43def0cd145841294aa2.jpg

:smiley:

A-Jay

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^What he said. If you still want to keep the rod in your hand you can troll jerk baits around popping the rod still and find em. 

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Color: Naturistic Perch

Storm Hot 'n Tots are killer baits for smallmouth. Troll them from 1.8 to 2.5 mph. They dart left then return to center & then dart right always hunting. They sometimes need tuned out of the box. Run them just behind the boat around 3 mph. If they blow out or only run to one side they need tuned by gently bending the line tie opposite of the way they are running. If the bait is running left as you face it bend the line tie to the right as you hold it facing you. Use small increments until it runs straight at higher than trolling speeds. They will run between 15 to 20 deep on 10lb braid with a mono/flouro leader.

 

 

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I always had good luck using Rebel Deep Craws.  Sometimes I'd add some weight to the line, a few feet from the bait, to get some extra depth.  I definitely agree with Dwight, 1.8-2.5 mph is the sweet spot for many diving baits.

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A-Jay has the right idea for sure. I use jerkbaits behind inline planer boards for lake trout as soon as the ice goes out in spring, and we always catch huge smallies that are just coming shallow. Ive never trolled specifically for bass but im sure if you used a planer board, you could work baits over shoals and points etc and keep the boat off the structure so you don't spook them. Works great for spooky lakers in gin clear water.

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Thanks guys! I will give some of these a try.

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Don't forget the grubs.

JohnDayRiverPic2.jpg.1ded2f881ca08830a57c04663ae05be8.jpg

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A Rebel Big Craw has worked really well trolling for me.  Even if you don't reach the bottom when trolling.. they come up for it.  I've seen so many crawfish down smallies' throats in my lake that look exactly like this lure.. just get one in every color, and try them.

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A high quality ball bearing swivel attached to an In-Line Spinner .... Blue Fox

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The thing about this is...when all is said and done...It's still...trolling.

 

😉

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25 minutes ago, Further North said:

The thing about this is...when all is said and done...It's still...trolling.

 

😉

And your point is?

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5 minutes ago, Dwight Hottle said:

And your point is?

My point is....trolling sure as heck beats searching an endless desert of lake to no avail.  I can't think of too many times I've been skunked when using this technique.  Plus, you never know what you might catch.  Jacob from Anglr Tour had two big lakers on, simply trolling with his kayak, and it didn't take him long.  Meanwhile, I made about ten thousand casts to scrape two bass.

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Best I’ve ever used trolling for smallmouth (and many other species) by far is a Salmo Hornet.   Gold Perch and Sick Perch, Holo Gold.  Almost a cult following in our area.  Sshhh...

 

https://www.cabelas.com/product/Salmo-Floating-Hornet/1392311.uts?slotId=2

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37 minutes ago, Dwight Hottle said:

And your point is?

No point.  I was trying for humor.

 

On a personal level...I'm not wired for trolling...or jigging like folks do for walleyes...As a life long hunter, I've never been able to have any fun with the forms of hunting that involve staying still.  No ducks, geese, deer, turkey...any of that stuff.

 

I envy the folks who can do it, but it's just not me.  I need to be moving, doing something (even if that something is jst reading)

29 minutes ago, J Francho said:

My point is....trolling sure as heck beats searching an endless desert of lake to no avail.  I can't think of too many times I've been skunked when using this technique.  Plus, you never know what you might catch.  Jacob from Anglr Tour had two big lakers on, simply trolling with his kayak, and it didn't take him long.  Meanwhile, I made about ten thousand casts to scrape two bass.

It's a good technique, if you can do it.  I tried to learn it and love it really, really hard when I thought I wanted to catch walleye...but I just can't.

 

...what I'd do, were I stuck "...searching an endless desert of lake to no avail." ...is go to another lake.  But I can do that here, and some folks can't, in any practical way.

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4 minutes ago, Further North said:

...what I'd do, were I stuck "...searching an endless desert of lake to no avail." ...is go to another lake.  But I can do that here, and some folks can't, in any practical way.

I have an endless supply of lakes within an hour of me.  However, not too many offer up smallmouth fishing like Great Lakes.

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7 minutes ago, J Francho said:

I have an endless supply of lakes within an hour of me.  However, not too many offer up smallmouth fishing like Great Lakes.

Yep, and you enjoy that kind of fishing.

 

I've looked at fishing the great lakes for smallies...and it's generally a trolling/jigging game.  That's cool...but not for me.  I'd rather catch smaller fish...or even no fish...fishing the way I enjoy.

 

It's why there's chocolate and vanilla...Cadilacs and Porsches...and Jeeps and trucks.  Something for everyone.

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My buddy troops for Lakers and salmon. He ususes a lot of Ling hair jigs and catches large bass on the turns where the bait slows and falls.  Many days he catches more bass than anything else. As a kid I did a lot of trolling, but that was an excuse to drive the boat 😎

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6 minutes ago, Further North said:

Yep, and you enjoy that kind of fishing.

Who wouldn't!

 

279167_2273434757493_1297399393_32726122

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1 minute ago, J Francho said:

Who wouldn't!

 

279167_2273434757493_1297399393_32726122

Me.  I can't do it.

 

...but I love hearing about when you do it!

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Usually I will troll crankbaits when I'm having trouble finding fish with my usual go-to methods. I don't troll much but sometimes it's nice to change things up and cover water this way. 

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