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thatoneguy

Tip-up fishing question

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I've never fished with tip-ups much, doing most of my work angling or spearing, but I'd like to do more of it.

Using a tip for pike fishing, how deep do you all usually have your bait? I have one cousin who says he usually has it just a couple feet under the ice, and another who runs it close to the bottom.

Anyone have any insight as to what works best (and why it might work better than other ways)?

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I like to fish about 2 feet off the bottom, but that is because i am usually fishing where an occasional walleye might come through. If i was fishing strictly for pike though i would probably run about 4 feet off the bottom. I have heard that they don't see below them real well.

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A flasher is on the Christmas list, but for now I just let it down til it gets to the bottom, then bring it up from there.

While we're on the subject of flashers, which one (assuming a budget of $350-$450) should I try to sneak past my wife?

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Pike are very controversial with depth. I've caught them from right underneath the ice to 6in off the bottome. Best thing to do, atleast here in WI I can set my 3 lines at all different depths to experiment. For the most part though, most go with 1-2ft off the bottom or a foot on top of the weeds.

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I agree Gator. I have caught at all depths!!! It seems to me that you just have to try every depth!! I have also used regular hooks, circle hooks and QS Rigs, I have had good hook rates with all. It to me is just a matter of see what works. During early ice I tend to stay shallow and by the weeds in 10-12 feet of water. Also I use egg type weights with the hole threw the middle to keep the sucker/shinner from swimming up to the top!!!

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It sounds stupid, but I split the difference.

If I am fishing one tip up while angling in another I will set the tip up bait half way between the ice and the bottom. So if the tip up is set in 9' of water the bait is running at 4.5'. And so on. Unless......

I am set up off a sunken island or shelf with a steep drop off. Say an island with a 10' top, I will set up off the island with the bait at 10' so that the fish will drift off the top and commit to the bait.

Experiment around and find what works best. Spend the day doing it, bring a friend, kid, or spouse, so you can use a few tipups and experiment with depth untill you settle on something you like doing.

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i might step on some toes here, so sry if I get alittle wild, but that's what I do.

First thing; a flasher: personally I would go with a Vex.

been some major debates on vex and marcum, but it's like ford vs. chevy. I would look at the fl-18, or fl-20...very nice and in that $$ range.

Tip-up; Walleye: most people won't use them for walleye, but I'm here to say that i have seen them out produce the best anglers around, and while using a flasher at that. The problem is human error i would say. Set 6-12" off bottom, and keep it simple. Red/color of your choice hook, and a minnow and a sinker.

Don't get fansy w/your magic jig. K.I.S.S.

Pike: Good line, good leader, good sharp hook, and a "large" sucker minnow...(large size of "Lite Northen").

Set the minnow to 3-5' below the ice and enjoy.

I agree that you can catch them at any depth, but 75% of the action will come on this set.

location is key...find the weedline break and move about 10' up into the weeds. Pike are predators that cruise these edges, and they will come in usually mid-way in the water colomn. Their eyes are more to the top of there head, therefore if the bait is below them they won't even see it. If it is above them with a nice light background, it's chow time...give it a try

GL

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I also like to set the bait about 6-12" above the tips of the weeds for pike.I usually use shiners because the have more flash,it seems if you use suckers and they are too low into the weeds,they will try to just hug the bottom. I read that the later in the season,the higher up in the water column you want to set the bait,something to do with the oxygen levels.I have heard that late ice pike like to cruise just below the ice.

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i ussually set it about 3-4 feet from the bottom. i was told once they cant see below them much but can see to the up with better eye sight. not sure it thats true but i do well on my tips !!

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I tend to go 5 feet off the bottom to start. I constantly adjust the depth until I get results. If I'm fishing with a group I will set them all at different depths until I get results. Some days a foot off the bottom works, others it's a foot from the top.

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What I like to do is go about 6 ft off the bottom. Take a look at a pike once. They wont see much below them, but they will see above them. Get the biggest suckers u can find, and put a big spinner bait blade on the line. You will get all kinds of flash.

The more dirt in the water you have the bigger the blade. For example, Red lake has pretty dark water compared to Mille Lacs. A big live sucker and a big blade will make all kinds of commotion for them to seek out.

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Not to complicate the issue but along with fishing different depths I usually also experiment with live and dead baits as well as shiners suckers and even fat heads. I have found that the pike can be in different moods and sometimes less aggressive one's will take downsized or dead bait and ignore the live one's.

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