Trolling In Wind & Waves

I work a lot and have limited time to fish. So I tend to plan my time carefully then pray that Mother Nature cooperates because I’m going fishing no matter what!  Rain, no problem - I’ve had some of my best fishing days in rainy weather. Cold fronts – not so much. But wind and waves for me have been the most frustrating.  So through trial and error, and some good ole research, I’ve some tips to share…

Trolling requires boat control – which means following the depths or break lines with precision and also controlling your speed.  When dealing with strong winds – the experts say to…

  • Always troll WITH the wind – it’s easier to control you speed and path when your bow is pointing downwind.
  • If you want to make another pass, don’t waste your time fighting a troll into the wind. Reel -up and motor back to your starting point and head downwind again.
  • Same with large waves. It is easier to control presentation and speed going with the waves.  Going into the waves can cause radical surges in your presentation, making your lure come to a complete stop then lurch forward. Some surge may be ok – dramatic surge, not so much.

Other factors that can help are correct choice of gear and other accessories.  Here are some tips…

  • Use drift socks off the bow to deploy under the boat (ahead of the prop). Drift socks provide additional drag and can help reduce surge and make it easier to control your speed. 
  • Use crank baits with larger bodies and larger diving lips – they have more resistance and surge less.
  • Spinners (above crawler harnesses) with larger blades work well.
  • Line – monofilament tends to stretch and contract which can absorb some surge. 
  • Attach a clip-on weight “halfway” back. The rise and fall of the weigh as the boat surges will lessen the surge on the lure.

While I never look forward to fishing in rough weather, I look forward to using these tips to make the most of my time on the water the next time Mother Nature tries to mess with my time off!

Source: Woods and Water
Tips and Tactics for Trolling in Wind and Waves - Safety First...

By Mark Martin
June 01, 2010

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