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River ?

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Im going muskie fishing on a river for the first time and was just wondering weather you should troll up current or with the current?

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You can do both, but it's going to effect the depth your lures run at. So first you gotta figure out what depth the fish are at, then adjust your length of line out depending on going with the current or against.

It really depends on the speed of the current though, if you have a 2-3mph current for example, you're gonna have to have a GPS/boat speed of 6-8 to troll at a lure speed of 4-6 going downstream.

Does that make sense?

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I am not a great river mind, but I think in general the fish are looking up stream for prey to come downstream to them.

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this has been the great debate among river rats for generations. i've had a few heated arguements over the years with a couple cantankerous oldsters (grandpappy's). of course i always lost because old dogs don't learn new tricks, or rats.. whatever..

basicly there are variables, included is jreds take, and there is also different areas to consider. one example... your trolling in current and your going past an underwater rock point jutting out from a submerged cliff or rock face. the current is going south and the size of the point isn't big enough to cause very much slack water on the ''front or upstream'' side of that point to be comfortable to a feeding predator. but the down stream side has some directly behind it for a fish to comfortably sit in ambush.... the waters surface is going to be your key to finding these points. disturbances are tell-tale signs when the water is pretty deep.. say ten feet.... if you troll downstream that lure is hidden from view untill it's right on the fish, but the lure going upstream it can see it from a good distance to prepare, giving it and you a better chance at a hook up.

one thing to consider is it's easier to troll against than with. with most lures anyway. for 'skis i've always had my best luck going against than with, which brings up the word confidence, which means i go against it more.

another area is eddies, which is sort of the opposite. i like to troll right next to the head of it first, continue to follow the current downstream to the tail end then sweep into the eddie at the tail before a turn around then right through the middle of eddy after the turn in a ''S'' pattern,if they are big enough, then turn again at the head and go through the other way. i've hooked many many muskie that hit way outside the eddy on my turns... wanna bet they were following it and hit on the changes of speed?...

around an island... find one with pretty deep water and current going around it on both sides and you found gold bars. just troll around that sucker till the cows come home. wink hope this helps, and don't forget to cast too. good luck.

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Thanks, i figured it may be a bit of both, i do think it'll be easier to troll againts the current for obvious reasons. im Heading out in a couple days to an area and river ive never fished. so i have no idea what to expect but 9 or 10 days to figure it out. Thanks again ill let ya know what happens.

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Quote:
you're gonna have to have a GPS/boat speed of 6-8 to troll at a lure speed of 4-6 going downstream. Does that make sense?

i just re-read this again and i missed something here. no it doesn't make sense. look close and you'll see why i'm sure. the lure will go the same speed as the boat no matter how fast the current is. well, assuming you are going faster than the current in the first place, otherwise it will just drift lifeless in the current or sink.

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Yup, im not sure what J redig is talking about

i think i do, well kind of but backwards. i think he meant if you had a ''fish finder'' only (not GPS), that has a speedometer (that little paddle wheel usually next to the transducer). if you anchored your boat and just let the current pass over the wheel it gives the currents' speed on your screen. if it's 3 miles an hour you have to go five just to get two if your going ''against'' the current because the wheel showed 3 at dead stop, and will still be 3 - your speed when you move. so you have to subtract 3 from whatever is on your screen. awsome tecnique for getting just over nothing going up.

going with the current you know you have to go at least 4 just to stay ahead of it so your lure works. (i should mention currents are almost never constant, for long, if at all) it's easier just to look at your rod tip and notice action, that's a good speed. GPS is pretty accurate for your speed but won't give you current speed. drift speed isn't anywhere near accurate even if there is no wind. there's meters and that but i never used any of that stuff. just more clutter to step on laugh ... but i love my GPS for this. it's great going against the current because i always know how fast i'm going without checking the current speed. it makes life a lot easier in so many ways. but in the end, after time on the river you'll never even think about this stuff. it'll just be habit. let us know how you do? good luck

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Don's getting to the bottom of it, GPS vs paddle wheel in conjunction with current.

I've found different speed current at different depths, so no your lure is not always going the same speed as the boat. As you said Don, it's not like the current is steady for a piece of water etc anyway, you do have to pay close attention to your equipment to see if it's working, just like when fishing in close proximity to weeds etc.

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I've found different speed current at different depths, so no your lure is not always going the same speed as the boat. As you said Don, it's not like the current is steady for a piece of water etc anyway, you do have to pay close attention to your equipment to see if it's working, just like

ok this was my meaning smile. with GPS. if i was going 5 miles an hour down current and the current itself was 3 miles an hour and never went past 5 mph my lure will always go 5 mph no matter what. the boat speed is the constant. if i go 7 mph and the current is 2mph my lure will go 7 mph. it never loses speed because it's going faster than the current. in other words the current won't push the lure so it can't make it faster. and it can't pull my lure so it can't make it go slower. the best way has always been just look at my tip and see the right action and i'm cool.

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