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What do you guys think about trolling?  It takes absolutely no skill, but on a very slow day, it seems like the thing to do  when moving from one spot to another.  Any opinions?

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I used to think that too, but out of curiosity, I read a book about it and while I will tell you that it would not be my first choice, there is a lot to learn about trolling. It is a different skill set from what you or I are accustomed to.

So I must disagree with you that it takes no skill. If trolling were such a shoe in (take catch fish to keep and eat), everyone would be doing it.

There are a myriad of setups that you can rig and methods, eg, down rigging, flat lining, hovering. The speed of the boat comes into play. You have to determine what depths you are going to target. Got wind and current? That is going to influence the amount of weight you might use on your downrigger to get the lure(s) to your desired depth. Get ready to do some math. 8-) People with no skills aren't going to have the math skills to make such calculations.

Also, if you're goal is to catch fish, especially to take home, with trolling, you can attack many levels in the water column at the same time; the top, 10, 25, 75 and 120 ft at the same time. If the line at 75 ft gets the hit, guess what? You now know what depth the fish are.

There are definitely skills involved as I was pleasantly surprised to learn. Granted, we're probably in the same boat, pardon the pun, about trolling not being a first choice, because it isn't the same as the way we prefer to fish. It would seem on the surface as boring, but its effectiveness at catching fish is undeniable if that indeed, is the goal.

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Wow. I never had any idea that there was so much to it. (Usually I just toss a rat-l-trap on there and start chuggin to the next spot).  I am amazed to find that there is a good deal more science in in than I thought.

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Read all of the books wrote by Elwood L. " Buck" Perry, then come back here and tell us how easy it is.

P.S.: You will become a better angler ;)

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It takes absolutely no skill...

How would you know that? Have you ever trolled?

There might be a little more to it than you think.

For multi-species fishing, trolling is hard to beat.

Specifically targeting bass, this is another way to

cover a lot of water. Attributes of trolling include

identifying areas cover and structure, as well as

locating fish. Working different lures at specific

depths and locating schools of baitfish are some

other things that come into play.

Try trolling, you might be surprised.

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I used to think that too, but out of curiosity, I read a book about it and while I will tell you that it would not be my first choice, there is a lot to learn about trolling. It is a different skill set from what you or I are accustomed to.

So I must disagree with you that it takes no skill. If trolling were such a shoe in (take catch fish to keep and eat), everyone would be doing it.

There are a myriad of setups that you can rig and methods, eg, down rigging, flat lining, hovering. The speed of the boat comes into play. You have to determine what depths you are going to target. Got wind and current? That is going to influence the amount of weight you might use on your downrigger to get the lure(s) to your desired depth. Get ready to do some math. 8-) People with no skills aren't going to have the math skills to make such calculations.

Also, if you're goal is to catch fish, especially to take home, with trolling, you can attack many levels in the water column at the same time; the top, 10, 25, 75 and 120 ft at the same time. If the line at 75 ft gets the hit, guess what? You now know what depth the fish are.

There are definitely skills involved as I was pleasantly surprised to learn. Granted, we're probably in the same boat, pardon the pun, about trolling not being a first choice, because it isn't the same as the way we prefer to fish. It would seem on the surface as boring, but its effectiveness at catching fish is undeniable if that indeed the goal.

All the above plus, just as you vary the retrieve techniques, trolling is not always putting the pole in a holder and towing the lure behind the boat.

There are times you will "jig" as you are trolling, or twitch and flick the rod to impart an irregular action to the lure being trolled, for the same reason it's done during a retrieve when casting.

Trolling amounts to a long cast, regardless of the hardware involved. It is dragging a lure in front of or above a fish. There are times you do not use a steady retrieve.

Having said all that.  Blind trolling may catch one or several fish.  When travelling from one place to another, you have zero chance of catching a fish without a bait in the water.

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Trolling takes tremendous skill. If you just want to drag a lure around, no it doesn't. But if you want to keep your bait on the structure you have to be at least one move or turn ahead.

I would suggest looking at these 2 sites and possibly ordering some material. Mr. Perry is widely recognized as the father of structure  fishing and even if you don't troll, you'll learn something.

Trolling has saved many days for me and netted my second largest Musky.

http://www.buckperry.com/

http://www.spoonplugger.net/

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I agree with the advocates of Spoonplugging (circa Elwood "Buck" Perry, 1960). Read his book growing up until I wore it out! Lots of great information there, even if you never plan on doing any trolling.

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Not much more to add other then when trolling you MUST know how deep a lure is going to run based on the speed, lure size, line size, etc.

There is a good guide available called Precision Trolling that has hundreds of lures listed in guide form to show how deep a particular lure will run using all the above.

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What do you guys think about trolling? It takes absolutely no skill,   Any opinions?

Trolling the right way is more than dragging a lure with the boat.

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OK lets teach ya something :)

With a crankbait the longer you can cast the lure the longer the distance or running room the lure has to reach its max depth before it turns around and works its way back to the boat on a cast. In the same respect the farther you spool the lure behind your boat on a troll, the more running room it has and the deeper the same lure will run. With crankbaits the running room, floatation of the line, how wide the lure wiggles, and speed all effect the max depth the lure will run. A wide wiggle lure is slow to reach the max depth because of the resistance it possesses running through the water. Line floatation and line length is the force that is preventing the lure to dive and continue to dive deeper and deeper. troll guys use weight to counter act this effect. depth changes because you give out line when you troll which gives the lure more depth to run. Speed is another factor because with crankbaits there is a max speed that the lure will run before it becomes overpowered and don't run right.

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Trolling gets a bad rap from bass fishermen because B.A.S.S. outlawed the presentation method to even the playing field.

Some tournament bass fishermen tend to stretch that rule by strolling, moving the lure with the electric trolling motor. Drift fishing is allowed.

Buck Perry opened up bass fishing to outside or main lake structure fishing. Bass fishermen, like Jason Lucas wrote about trolling deep diving plugs, now called crankbaits, before Perry popularized spoonplugs. Perry's books are excellent history and a must read.

I troll to teach new bass fishermen to learn about deep diving crankbaits, how they run and feel when a bass strikes. Great learning tool to teach electronics and surveying techniques on unknown lakes.

Don't turn your nose down at a time proven fishing technique, just because bass tournament fishermen can't utilize it during a contest.

WRB

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I believe the perception is amoungst the tournament fishermen, there is no skill in trolling.      

For the most part, you aren't doing the work, the boat is.

        When you cast a crank, you can stop it, bump it, burn it, pause it and such.  You are giving it the action.  You are doing the work.

Its kinda hard to do all the above when the boat is gear and the boat is doing the work.    Specially when the rods are in holders.

 

There are 100 techniques for trolling different kinds of baits.    We talk about becoming versitile with different methods of fishing.     Drop shot, wacky, split shotting, C rig and etc...     same as with trolling, becoming versatile with various forms of trolling.

   You still need to be able to find productive areas, and select correct colors based on seasonal patterns and given conditions.

   Its just another method or style of presenting a bait.      

     

       

       

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I had no idea that there was so much to it. I was doing what many of you guessed: tossing a crank off of the back of the boat.  I am just amazed at all of the details that go into trolling.  Thanks for all of the insight guys.

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What do you guys think about trolling?

You seem to be doing a pretty good job of it with your original post. ;)

If I am not mistaken, David Lee Hayes caught the world record smallmouth trolling a 301 Bomber.

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Trolling is a method I use after 3 or 4 hours of not catching any fish by usual methods.  It's a nice break from whipping the rod around, gives me a chance to eat an apple or whatever.  One more tool in the fisherman's arsenal.

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