Chasing midsummer speed freaks

Midsummer is the perfect time for picking up the pace especially if you’re chasing walleyes. The fish just seem to prefer a bait moving at a good clip and speed can be a real trigger. The time to give it a try is when what you’ve been doing isn’t working or has drastically slowed down.

Tech. Sgt. Jonathan Anlauf from Braham, had to pick up the pace to nail this dandy walleye.
Tech. Sgt. Jonathan Anlauf from Braham, had to pick up the pace to nail this dandy walleye.Photo submitted

A top technique for picking off speed demons is trolling a spinner and crawler combination, but the rig does have some limitations and you have to get it right to catch fish.

Speed is the critical part of the presentation and includes a mile and a quarter to maybe a mile and three quarters per hour. Any slower and your rig will probably end up dragging on the bottom and too fast and it will spin out and result in a tangled up mess.

A productive speed isn’t that difficult to achieve; you just have to be aware of it and adjust.

A wind pushing you along at the right speed is perfect but you don’t always find ideal conditions and it might not be pushing you in the right direction. A powerful electric trolling motor and a drift sock can be invaluable when you’re trying to nail it down.

With calmer conditions, a powerful trolling motor like the Minn Kota Terrova can easily handle the task and really is the way to go.

But when the wind starts to howl and you’re having trouble staying on top of things you might want to drop a drift sock off the bow. A smaller diameter sock might be fine for calmer conditions, but when it’s really whipping it up a big sock with a 54-inch hoop might be the way to go. With the sock out you can control the speed and with trolling motor you can position the boat to stay on the fish.

The speed indicator on my Humminbird 1199ci GPS. is the most accurate and easiest way to monitor just how fast I’m moving and out performs the paddle wheel types or gauges that come with a boat.

Without the ability to determine your exact speed you can still get an idea if you’re going to slow if the hooks are picking up a lot of debris or mud and too fast if your rig is tangling up.

See you on the water.

Ron Anlauf is a contributing writer to the Outdoors page.