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Trolling Canandaigua Lake


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Hi guys,

 

I am looking to get more into trolling this year and am looking for suggestions on what basic gear I should get. I don't have downriggers at the moment but may be getting some. I was thinking about trolling with dipsy divers and planer boards, but the issue I am having is that I am not sure what lures are good to use. Any suggestions on where to start would be great. Thank You

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  I was in your shoes…..being that I troll alone, I find it impossible to use downriggers. So I go exclusively with deeper divers (name brand).  They will easily get down to 100 ft. I can run 3 of them;  two behind and one out to the sides. For lures I use only Sutton Spoons….only the best! #61 and #44 hammered are my favorites. A fish hawk gives me a clear view of the water temps top to bottom. I will usually start deep in April off Long Pt. Always a good bet. GOOD LICK!

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Michigan Stinger the best use bright colors if you want rainbows stay in the upper 50ft of water good luck, downriggers set with cheaters with chamberlain releases the best

 

Edited by Trouthunter
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+1 trout hunter - invest in the DR's. You will use them overtime you are out. If not, you may find it difficult to get down where you need to be on a constant basis. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I troll alone, I found the downriggers to be easier than planer boards, I run 2 downriggers 1 rod on each and one leadcore line off the back. It keeps things simple and not tangled. It takes a minute to get used to using them but once the motor memory is learned it's super easy.  Plus you can see exactly where your spoon is on the fishfinder with the DR's pretty easy. The biggest improvement in my fishing career was getting the autopilot for my trolling motor. I use the gas motor to get to where I want to troll point the boat downwind and set the ipilot and then it's worry free fishing not fighting the lake. 24v I-Pilot lasts 5 or 6 hours easily as long as I'm not pushing against the wind but I'm not out in 8' swells either. 

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Personally I run 2 unitroll 10s with 8lbs balls and double stack to run 4 rods on the 2 riggers. I find depending on water depth I'll space them out 10-20ft apart depthwise.
I airbrush my own spoons and have a few that work quite a bit better than others, at this point in my life it's not fun unless it's a lure I painted lol.

Sent from my moto g play (XT2093DL) using Lake Ontario United mobile app

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As suggested downriggers can be handy but they are not indispensable on Canandaigua Lake. You didn't mention when in the season you intend to fish  or all season long as there can be different answers according to time of year. Smaller dipseys can be used in the upper level of the lake in the Spring and late Fall with small to medium spoons or small to medium stick baits. toplining from boards also  works well during much of the season for rainbows and an occasional brown. The larger browns are often caught using live or dead bait (alewives) within the 100 ft or less water around the lake periphery near points and drop-offs, and often at night or early morning while a few are caught trolling. In the summer they tend to hug bottom in about 70 or 80 ft of water near drop-offs. There are no landlocks in the lake and only unstocked rainbows, stocked browns, and stocked Lake trout with a few naturally propagated fish of both the latter two species. Other than the early Spring and late Fall the Late trout are pretty deep so larger Deep Divers or Magnum sized are needed to get down deeper without riggers or Seth Green rigs. Flasher/ fly, Spin Doctor/ fly or both of these with spoons are pretty effective for lakers and the occasional rainbow or brown. It is important to keep the spoons and stickbaits within the small to medium range most of the time for most consistent results. Sutton spoons were were designed on and for Canandaigua Lake and they work very well as they are light weight and "flutter" a little differently than some other spoons and the silver plating on them is more visible for longer distances under water than say chrome or nickle. There is a large range of shapes and sizes of these spoons but they require a little trial and error experience to determine the best trolling speed for them and running several different ones of different shapes and sizes at the same time on a Seth Green rig usually means some may be running well and other maybe not so well. The larger ones seem to run best at slower speeds while the very small pones can be run at higher speeds usually for rainbows in the warmer weather and at some distance from the boat. If you don't get riggers or have leadcore lines you may wish to consider having a 5 color and 10 color to run from boards throughout the season. The smallest Suttons run very well for the bows from these. If I am found dead after posting this it was the other guys that troll Caanandaigua:o:lol:

Edited by Sk8man
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16 hours ago, Sk8man said:

As suggested downriggers can be handy but they are not indispensable on Canandaigua Lake. You didn't mention when in the season you intend to fish  or all season long as there can be different answers according to time of year. Smaller dipseys can be used in the upper level of the lake in the Spring and late Fall with small to medium spoons or small to medium stick baits. toplining from boards also  works well during much of the season for rainbows and an occasional brown. The larger browns are often caught using live or dead bait (alewives) within the 100 ft or less water around the lake periphery near points and drop-offs, and often at night or early morning while a few are caught trolling. In the summer they tend to hug bottom in about 70 or 80 ft of water near drop-offs. There are no landlocks in the lake and only unstocked rainbows, stocked browns, and stocked Lake trout with a few naturally propagated fish of both the latter two species. Other than the early Spring and late Fall the Late trout are pretty deep so larger Deep Divers or Magnum sized are needed to get down deeper without riggers or Seth Green rigs. Flasher/ fly, Spin Doctor/ fly or both of these with spoons are pretty effective for lakers and the occasional rainbow or brown. It is important to keep the spoons and stickbaits within the small to medium range most of the time for most consistent results. Sutton spoons were were designed on and for Canandaigua Lake and they work very well as they are light weight and "flutter" a little differently than some other spoons and the silver plating on them is more visible for longer distances under water than say chrome or nickle. There is a large range of shapes and sizes of these spoons but they require a little trial and error experience to determine the best trolling speed for them and running several different ones of different shapes and sizes at the same time on a Seth Green rig usually means some may be running well and other maybe not so well. The larger ones seem to run best at slower speeds while the very small pones can be run at higher speeds usually for rainbows in the warmer weather and at some distance from the boat. If you don't get riggers or have leadcore lines you may wish to consider having a 5 color and 10 color to run from boards throughout the season. The smallest Suttons run very well for the bows from these. If I am found dead after posting this it was the other guys that troll Caanandaigua:o:lol:

Sk8man will steer you right ️ 

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I don't troll that lake....but I've had a ton of different boats and setups and fished alot in my life. My ipilot is the best thing I ever owned. I've got quick connects on it and can move it to the 12' Jon boat for small waters or no launch, the 18' StarCraft for medium lakes and trolling Erie. The 22' salmon boat is to tall. On the little tin boats I would suggest at least 1 downrigger. There indispensable when fish are tight to bottom. Like lake trout I will bounce the ball with cowbells. Also I can easily stack 2 spoons on 1 rod giving me 4 baits instead of 3 when alone. You'll know almost exactly where your baits are and can target exact depths. Dipsies and lead or copper is just a guess and it fluctuates alot with speed and current. The rigger is also almost straight down and out of the way of other lines and with just 1 rigger you can figure 8 in a tight spot and not tangle. I would only run 1 if it's a smaller boat and mainly 1 fisherman. I run 2 sets of wire divers. Mag or standard dipsy as my low and slide divers with ultimate kit on my high divers. If there are no fleas there you could use braid divers but I'd recommend buying a set of diver rods. 1 for each side and just run those with a downrigger for any of your deep water trolling. For shallow water rods I'd recommend getting a set of snap weights and a pair of line counter reels. You would run those with inline planer boards and I would strongly recommend getting the ninja boards. There amazing when alone in a small boat and need to remove them while fighting a fish. Snap weights will allow you to target down to 50' without the need to purchase several rods. On the big boat I have a pair of two color, pair of four color, one 5 color, pair of 7 color, and a pair of 10 color, as well as a 50, 75, pair of 125, and a 175 copper. So I have 14 rods set to fish shallow water that I could do with just 1 pair of mono rods. If you got room in your boat load up on lead and copper rods. Small boat I'd just take 1 rigger rod 2 snap weights setups and 2 divers. Should be easy enough to deploy alone and effective out to any depth. I can't recommend lures or anything specific for the lake but I'd recommend going to the finger lakes trolling flea market. Look for good used equipment and ask as many questions as you can about everything there. Think the flea market is soon????? Hopefully someone chimes in with dates/info.

 

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