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D.J. Aanensen

Trolling with a Yak

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I only started Kayaking a couple of years ago and have tried trolling with some success. I used a shorter, flexible tip rod, some PP and a leader with plugs. Any advice on lures and techniques would be greatly appreciated. I plan on getting a peddle yak and would like to act like I know what I'm doing when I get out there.

 

Thanks

 

D.J.

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im sure youll get tubed to death in here but see if you can hook up w/tim in the spring and investigate how he fishes the yak. no trolling. different mentality from covering water hoping for the best to pinpoint presentation where you KNOW they hang. i dont know if its just me or what but im not comfy trolling either and dont enjoy using the yak as an extension of myself as much as i would if i hooked up as a result of my own retrieve, lure placement, etc. that hobies gonna free up both hands to let you do just that, should be a good year for ya icon14.gif

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You will have a definite advantage in a pedal yak. Often, I like to vary my lure speed abrubtly, to act "injured". You will be able to twitch a lure as you can have the rod in your hands whenever you want.

 

I troll T&W a lot ... kind of non-cerebral as Otter said, but during the day, nothing will touch it (except maybe live-lining - which I also do from my yak). If you want to appear that you know what you are doing, as seen by the fish on your line, try the T&W.

At night, I troll bombers or darters paddling extremely slowly!

But, the best reward is to find the fish and then stop and throw to them! Thus, I always carry two rods, my heavy 7' rod (rated for 25lb line) for trolling and a lighter rod rigged with a leader for casting lures (or alternatively, the fly rod).

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I have some spots I liked but just seemed to waste some time getting there. So I thought the trolling idea would work on the way to my honey holes. 2 rods for sure will go with me but was looking for more of how to troll?

 

How much line out?

What type of line?

Type of rods?

What you used for Weakfish, bass. I know all about the blues as they seemed to eat anything I had behind my yak last year.

 

Just looking for a beginners primer and a better start. Then I'll do the usual...start doing something different and experiment on my own.

 

Thanks again.

 

D.J.

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Trolling is certainly not the most exciting way to fish ...

 

But in the words of ONE experienced kayaker, who I suspect will comment on this thread ...

 

"I wouldn't consider travelling from point "A" to point "B" without pulling something behind me."

 

Those words set off a lightbulb in my mind, because they make PERFECT sense! Trolling may not be an end to a means, but it certainly is a means to an end!!!

 

I now pull something behind me everywhere I paddle!

 

AMMO

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I actually catch more fish while trolling than when I am stationary and casting, so I do it every chance I get... Of course, I like to feel the fish hit and run while I retrieve, but that is overrated... wink.gif

 

How much line out? - For a spin rod with a swimming plug, I just pitch it behind me and don't think about it much. For my fly rod, I false cast until I get about 40-50 feet out.

 

What type of line? - I use braid on my spinner and conventional rods and ... fly line on my fly rod... all have fluorocarbon leaders of at least 6 feet...

 

Type of rods? 6-7 1/2' medium to heavy rods; conventional or spinner of your choice... you only need a length long enough to clear your bow in case the fish swings around. For fly rods, 9' 9-11 wt is fine.

 

What you used for Weakfish, bass. - I would suggest to use whatever you would use from a regular boat should work... Swimmers, bucktails, flies, etc...

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I always keep an plug out when moving from one spot to another, picked up some nice blues for the smoker that way. When I go fishing for fluke, I slow troll with my Hobie at slack tide, I zig zag the drop off and most of the time have better action than drifting with the tide.I think with the Hobie, trolling is such a blast because you have the rod in your hand and feel the impact of the strike and that gets the blood flowing.

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From my very limited experience: I noticed I got almost exclusively blues (one sea robin comes to mind)when trolling plugs between points A and B. I think the faster trolling speed was important to what was caught while "commuting". When I'd concentrate on trolling, I'd try to have the lure or bucktail+trailer tick bottom regularly while I went verrry slowly. Catch changed to sea robins, some fluke and one bass about 24" that took a diving plug that had difficulty diving at the slow speed. All this during times with at least some daylight, over fairly clean bottom in up to 20' of water.

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I caught all of my biggist fish trolling last year! Strpers,Fluke,Weakies all were caught with a fast troll while traveling from point A to B!At first I thought it was dumb luck, but I came to realize it's not. When paddling around I like to ride swells and wakes if they are going my way. It seems when I catch the swell/wake right at the accelleration (sp?) point is when they hit. Surf n troll can be exciting, the fish react to the sudden burst of speed. I use spin n glos infront of Storms for this now, works pretty well! The spin n glo keeps constant motion going, check them out for trolling.I agree with comment that jiggin or retrieving is more rewarding though. I like drifting the best. I can't seem to catch anything trolling the fly rod yet! I think it has to do with the braided loops I use, unnatural looking, pushing water... eek.gif

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Gannet, I'm relatively new to trolling flies too, but it seems the secret is to go REEEEEALLY SLOOOOOW!!! I used to troll swimmers, bucktails, jigs all the time and needed to get a certain action by trolling at a decently fast clip. But when I switched to flies at the end of last season, I was getting skunked all the time. This season, I have switched to slow slow slow trolling and my hit ratios are back up there. Of course, there are some assumptions being made... I am using a full intermediate clear fly line with braided loops to a 6-8' fluorocarbon leader. If you use a sinking line, you may be able to speed up a bit. Give this a try in the spring and see what happens...

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Well I guess I better throw in my 2 cents....

For stripers I have always had the best luck with metal lipped deep divers. Sometimes stopping in the middle of a good spot and letting the lure float to the surface get tempts a surface strike.

Location,location,location - You have to know your real estate, look for deep holes along steep drop offs.

For safety I remove all but the back hook off plugs. You cannot paddle with a hook embedded in your palm (another plus for the Hobie)

When trolling shadow lines after dark the hobie rules. Take a fly rod loaded with a popper and get on the upcurrent side of the bridge. Move along the shadow line with rod in right hand and control lever in left. Turn your head over right shoulder and watch popper. Let the currrent push popper into the dark about 2 or 3 feet. The turn hobie into current and pull popper 2 or 3 feet into light. Repeat this pattern from shoreline to shoreline.

Barrell

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