This winter, tackle more walleye wherever they swim with these 12 time-tested tactical tips
#5 ATTRACT AND TRIGGER
One of the enduring misconceptions about winter walleye is that they’re sluggish and prone to belly-to-the-bottom habits. Nothing could be further from the truth. In order to catch them, though, you do need to first attract them to your lure, then trigger them into biting it. Most lures excel at either attracting or triggering, although a few can do both equally well (see tactic #6).
To call in the walleye, drop your lure to the bottom, then reel it up 12 to 18 inches. Next, lift your arm steadily, while you flick your wrist briskly to snap the lure up a foot. Pause at the apex for a second before letting the lure flutter back down under controlled slack line. Now let the lure pause slightly longer, and if no walleye shows up on your sonar screen, keep repeating the process.
When a fish does appear on the screen, initiate the triggering mode by keeping your lure in front of the fish, jiggling it ever so slowly using a subtle wrist action. As the walleye closes in, stop moving the lure and wait to feel the fish hit it. If the walleye instead appears to back off, shake the lure frantically to call it back over. When the walleye returns, pause the lure, then ever so slowly lift and jiggle it as though it were attempting to flee.