VooDoo

Best 6-8 rod spread for starters.

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Hi guys,  I'm new to the forum and would like to know your opinions on the best rod spread to start with.  I'm from WV and am a 6 hr. drive to the closest ports, (Lewiston, Wilson, or Olcott  would be the closest)  This limits the amount of time I can fish Lake O.  Anything you could provide to shorten the learning curve would be appreciated.  Here's a little background on my equipment.  19' aluminum Deep Vee, 120 HP Merc, 9.9 Merc. kicker, Motorguide xi5 36 v. trolling motor, Lowrance elite 7 and Garmin echomap 73sv gps/sonar.  Marine radio. manual downriggers. 10 Offshore OR 12 Inline planer boards and 2 TX 44s,  6  walker deeper divers 107 mm size.  8"  Green, white and blue flashers, lots of spoons and crankbaits.

I  fished Lake Erie a lot last summer for walleye and did well so I'm not a rookie,  just a rookie to lake O,  I currently have 2 8' Med/ downrigger rods and 4 mh dipsy rods, 2 9'6 and 2 8'6 rigged with Okuma Magdapro LC 20 reels and 30# power pro braid, 2 leadcore rods 30 size reels with 7 colors 27# and 20 lb mono backing.   I also have available but not rigged,  2 daiwa wilderness 8' Med rods with  20 Okuma LC reels, 4 Cabelas 8'6 tournament MH rods with 2  30 size cabelas LC reel and 2 45 size Okuma LC reels. I realize some of this equipment is not ideal for lake O but  I'd like to utilize what I have if possible, but am not opposed to spending some on must haves like copper, stainless trolling wire etc.  Any thoughts?

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Need more details on time of year you plan on coming up. Time of year and water temp will dictate how we fish. 

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Probably Mid May to the end of June would be the most likely time I could come up although i would not rule out mid September.   Did fish out of Lewiston or should say tried to fish this past May but only got on the lake for 4 hrs due to high winds.  One coho and a few steelhead in the river was it.  Like the idea of a mix bag. 

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Hey VooDoo,

 

I run a very similar boat. Most days I prefer a 6 rod setup to keep things simple. 2 riggers, 2 wire dipsey divers, and 2 copper/lead core setups (I will run 4 on calmer days) You can run the coppers/leadcores off your TX44's, I personally use a planer board mast and big jon otter boats. I would def get yourself a copper setup. Your 7 color will get you down 38-40 foot, so a 300 copper would be a good choice (~down 66ft @2.5mph). You will need a 45/55 size convector (or equivalent) reel for the copper. As per your Diver setups.....I'm not sure you can get 1000ft of wire on a 20size reel, everybody i know uses 30's. Also those fresh spring kings at the bar can be absolutely violent, most guys will tell you Magda pros wont last.

 

I'm no where near as experienced as some of the guys on this forum, but it if you would like more info I would be happy to help through PM.

 

Don

Edited by Drebs12

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Hey Don,  Thanks for the reply,  I agree that the Magdas probably arent the best choice. I'll probably put a carbon drag upgrade kit on them. But considering I can only make the trip to Lake O. twice or three times a year for now I will probably stick with them for now. If I can get the hang of this, I'll probably upgrade as I go along.  I have 2 30 size Cabelas LC reels (made by Okuma I think) that will work for the wire dipsies.  So your running 1000' all wire instead of say 500' and braid backing for the Dipsy Rods?  I have 45 size Okuma LCs that I will start off with for the copper. Rods I intend to use for copper and wire dipsies have ceramic guides,  Would these be ok if I add a twili tip.   Do you think I should run say a 7 color and 5 color or 10 color leadcore setup instead of two 7 colors?  Also what about flatlines or trip zee divers (jet divers)  I have them in 20, 30, 40 and 50 sizes.  Switching over from Walleye is definitely gonna be a whole new ball game.  When do the fleas start getting bad?.  there's another wrench in the works to contend with.,  They're not bad on Erie.

 

Randy

 

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I was trying to follow this :(   I'm also new to lake Ontario salmon fishing, I fish Erie for Walleye and steelhead mostly.

 

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I think you're pretty well equipped.  I'm from Ohio and try to make a weekend trip to the Olcott area once per year.  I recommend waiting until you see people here posting that they are having success.  I like to make the trip in late June or July when the walleye slow down on the western basin of Lake Erie.  I pick a weekend where we can fish all day Saturday and in the morning on Sunday.  We got 5 kings 14 - 21 lbs the first year and 7 kings from 12 - 23 lbs the second year.  We DO have a Fishhawk that I think improves our chances.  We target the water column from 42 to 55 degrees.  If there is not a thermocline, I wouldn't know what to do.  A sustained northeast wind prior to your trip can bring in cold water and eliminate the thermocline.  The local bait store seems to be a lot more helpful helping newbies than I'm used to in Ohio.  ASB tackle hooked me up with spread recommendations and sold me some tackle that they said was 'hot'.  The tackle they sold me ended up catching most of my fish so thumbs up to them!!  We fish from a Grady White 208 which is a little trailerable walk behind cuddy.  We use an Xi5 for autopilot with a kicker to propel the boat.  (Have a Garmin TR1 system  in the basement waiting to be installed so no more motorguide on big water)

 

We run a seven line spread which is really easy to manage consisting of:

1) 300 Copper on a TX-44

2) 10 Color Leadcore on a TX-44

3) Dipsy Diver 10 ft above line 4

4) Dipsy Diver 10 ft above line 5

5) Meat & Paddle on the downrigger with the fishhawk probe

6) Flasher fly stacked 15ft above #7

7) 2 color leadcore on bottom of stacked rigger with glow spoon with the ball 10 feet above the 42 degree water line.

 

This spread is super easy to manage.  The 300 coper and lead core lines are in another zip code.  There is no way they'll tangle with the dipsy lines.  Running two dipsy divers per side is really easy to do.  We used 1 setting.  We tried two dipsy per side and the current on Lake O tangled them.  We have zero problems running two per side on Erie, but can't pull it off on Lake O.  We use chamberlain releases for the releases and to stack the downriggers.  We run a mixture of flasher/fly, spin doctor/fly and clean spoons.  We have cabelas depthmaster reels and rods.  For one trip per year, they're adequate and can land these fish.  It's a blast and like I said, the only thing I'd add is a fishhawk.  The fishhawk has improved my walleye fishing as I am able to replicate down speeds in any direction.  It's not a waste to run a fishhawk on Erie, especially on the eastern and central basins.  We are a testament that you can go out on Lake O with the right equipment, put a bunch of lines out in the temperature zone and pick up some fish even though you have zero experience with this lake.

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Hey DG,  thanks for the reply, 

99.9% of my experience is fishing for eyes out of Conneaut.  Would really like to cash on that spring Lake O. mixed

bag.  Those cohos are pretty tasty.  I do have a Fish Hawk TD,  so I can at least find the correct temp zones.  Will just have to depend on the line and bend of the rod to determine current direction and speed for now.  SOG on the Gps isn't real accurate when you get current involved.

Looks like I may be in the market for some new gear. 

How are you rigging your stackers?

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I use chamberlain releases. At the ball, I have a standard release. If I'm going to stack, I just let the first line down 10 feet or so, then I attach a chamberlain stacker release attach the second line then drop the ball to the desired depth.

I can't help with a Lake O springtime spread. The spread I was discussing is for deep water summertime fishing with an established thermocline.


Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United

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You have much trouble with Fleas?    Do you think 30lb mono would be heavy enough on rigger rods to deter fleas

or would 40 be better?   From my understanding there isn't much of a flea problem with 7 strand diver wire,

copper or leadcore.

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I'd run 20lb main line and bounce to 30 if the fleas are crazy but from the days I've been out your checking rods every 30-45 mins or reeling in a fish so the fleas never seem to accumulate all that bad. Everyones suggestions are good. I'd say only thing to focus on buying is a fishhawk speed and temp system. Also look for the current "hot items" people are running and you'll be in the fish in no time! Good luck!

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