VooDoo

Best 6-8 rod spread for starters.

Recommended Posts

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?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Careful with the braid on the Dipsy  reels, anytime after may you will have a flea problem. Switch to wire.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Magda pros will work just fine for you. Been running them for 8 years without any problems. Just adjust your drags when settling lines.


Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

May to June, Wilson to the bar is a very good place to be . definitely be a mix bag of fish there . i believe your gear you have would work fine for a a couple times a year . probably bump up your leaders tho . depending on the time of may your there the LOC derby is going on and the pro am derbies . the other boats on the lake will give an ideal what water to fish . i would say run riggers, dipsy , and cores of your in line boards . flasher / fly , spoons , sticks . if after lake trout cow bells with spin & glows. Captain Bob Songin ( Reel Excitement Charters ) is on face book and give A good fishing report . remember tho the tournaments are going on, so at times reports get a little tight lip . Good luck to you , oh one other thing you be making more trips in the future as you will be putting some nice over the rail , it dose gets addictive , then comes spending big bucks :lol:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Definitely come around the middle to end of may. From Olcott to the bar, It’s a great mixed bag of lake trout, coho, Browns, and the kings start showing up. There’s usually a ton of bait around and like stated earlier, the spring LOC derby is going on, as well as some other big money tour it’s like the WHI and the Niagara Pro Am.


Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for all of the replies.  Have a trip planned for mid May out of Wilson.  Taking your previous advice in this post, over the long, long winter I have assembled an arsenal of rods..  Here is what I have and would like to get your opinions on how to deploy it,  for this time of year, no more than 8 rod spread for multi species with emphasis on kings and coho, but not ruling out the other species.   Lead core...7 color, 3 color and two 2 colors..   copper...  a 200 and a 300,  2 rigger rods,  4 braid diver rods,  2 wire diver rods, and 2 general purpose 8' rods loaded with 20 lb mono.  Also have 4  lighter 7' rods intended for browns that won't probably apply here, but are available.  As mentioned before I have TX 44 and OR 12 inline boards,  Have an assortment of flasher/ flies, spoons, meat rigs and plugs.  Thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

The water will probably still be pretty cold by then. My tradition of hitting the night bite for the walleye opener is probably not gonna happen this year. 

I would start with two riggers with spoons for salmon and sliders riding high with super slims for coho and drop back steelhead. Two divers with flasher/flies, 200-300’ coppers on inside boards and 2 and 3 colors with small orange coho flashers and blue/green peanut flies on outside boards. That’s our typical charter spread for early to mid may. Of course you will have to adjust. If divers are hot and coppers not, swap out and run 4 divers. 

Edited by King Slammin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the reply.  What would you run on the coppers?

Is it too early to run meat?  Also how far back on the riggers 10' to 20'?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

rigger leads is experimental. Typically I vary lead length to find a pattern. Some days as short as 5’ is killer. Always have some meat down deep when the kings are around

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Consider using two of your braid divers to run slide divers outside of your dipsys. You could also convert them into a four or five color. I don’t think you need four braid divers and two wire divers. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I use the 4 braid  rods to pull dipsies on Erie for walleyes, so they pull double duty. 30lb power pro on them. The wire divers are strictly for Lake O.

As far as the slide divers do you mean as a high diver inside of the coppers say on a 5 setting or in place of the coppers.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2 wire divers on inside, 2 high braid divers with slide divers on the outside.  Coppers or leadcore go on boards past them........as far as you can get them out to the side.  Or if you don't have slide divers then you can gain separation with mag wire dipsys with no rings on inside (1 setting) and two braid high standard divers (3 setting).  No right or wrong way to do it.  Pay attention to where the fish are coming from and try to put as many baits spread out in the hot zone.  You may have it blow from NE and have your 5 color going off.  You may have no wind and have to chase deep kings off the bottom in 200' with downriggers.  You are correct in having lots of options ready for your trip.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.