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Musky trolling

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I like to troll for muskies in between spots where I cast or just to give my casting muscles a break. The only problem is I don't know much about trolling for muskies. How deep should I fish in the water column? If I'm trolling deeper water looking for suspended muskies, how deep do they normally suspend this time of year? Since I'm usually out alone, I can only fish one depth at a time, so where should I start? 5 feet deep, 10 ft, 20 ft?

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Experimenting is really the only way to go when you're trying something new. Each lake can/will be different. But remember that active fish are going to be higher in the water column and it's better to fish too shallow than too deep. Fish will feed up...


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what aaron said... i'll try and add.

typical feeding is from below (muskie can't see down, only to the side, forward and up and from below is better for a suprise attack...or behind, lol) so it's never a bad idea to look for bait-fish pods and fish just under them. warmer weather pushes them down and colder weather brings them up. it's about the tempurature of the water. wind mixing the water has an effect also. on warm days it can mix the water/heat down more and pushes them (food) even deeper. or it can bring them even higher when it's cold. a good ''starting'' depth if you just want to ''wing it'' and not mess with anything is 15 feet over a 40 foot basin 10-15 over 30, and 15-20 over a 50 or more. theres a pattern there with the number 15, that is always my starting point if i'm just trolling for the heck of it.

wind has an effect also of pushing the surface water up against, say, a point that drops off into deep water and curls it back toward the main lake underneath and this can heat water for a long way out all the way to the bottom and out for a good distance. in this case trolling in the middle in the deeper areas not affected can be great.

also keep in mind that heat rises and can push the colder water up nearer the surface in some areas, especially near cliffs and walls, and there may be small pods of bait fish in these small pools of cold water which can be right near the surface, but only untill it warms which won't take too long, then they disperse. so trolling very high, in about 5 feet, even in really deep water, can be a good tactic, you just might get lucky and run into one those pools, and a muskie.

please keep in mind hot days make for a dead muskie very quick. boatside smile and release. it's the only way.

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Thanks for the tips. I like the in depth response Don. Just what I was looking for. Since I'm fishing alone most of the time, the fish won't even come out of the water. Just a release pic (if I can) and on her way.

Thanks again.

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