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I have limited experience with downriggers. My boy and I have been out a couple times trying them out for the first time. We've been out on one of the fingerlakes trying different depths and lures. We've set one rigger low for Lakers and one higher just to see what we can get. Can someone decode what's going on in some of the pictures? I'm assuming I'm having some fish checkout my deep set as I go by but they're not committing. Maybe i'm scaring them away with the ball? My speed has been around 1.8-2.0 mph. Should I slow down? Try shorter/longer distance behind the ball? Been using gambler rigs with cowbells, and stingray sized spoons down deep. 

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Most times I run my low rigger on the finger lakes with a 10-15 foot lead off the ball, or less.  Lakers usually aren't too bothered by it. But they can be if so stretch 25-30. That's as long of a lead that I've run fishing on the finger lakes and working on charter boats on lake Ontario when it comes to Laker deep. Try varying your speeds for sure. They're not afraid of higher speeds. Spin doctors with flys run down low are deadly on Cayuga for lake trout and are very speed tolerant.   They also just might not like what you're using or just flat out aren't hungry. Anything under 90 feet I use a flasher/fly. 80 and up spoons are effective. The suspended Lakers 40-70 or even much higher are usually on the feed. Dipsy divers fished in this range are deadly and much farther away from the boat. Lots of variables when trolling which means lots of thinking. Keep playing with all the variables. 

 

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My high rigger I run a minimum of 50 feet back. Often longer. Just how I personally 

 fish. 30 ft up to the surface you're looking at mostly silvers but not always. 40-80 takes Lakers consistently plus other species. Active feeding fish can also get out of the way of boat noise and come back into the spread for longer presentations. many times with a blank screen you can get bit. All things to consider 

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YOUR IN 104 FEET OF WATER.WATER TEMP IS 58.86, 1.97 MILES PER HOUR SPPED, 12.3 BATTERY VOLTS, 09 ;22;38 AM YOUR TIME

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Posted (edited)

Thanks for the quick responses. I'll keep those things in mind. Will have to throw out a spin dr and fly next time. 

 

Also, forgot to add this one in there. 

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Edited by troutman10
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you got a fish moving at 25 ft mark and on bottom at 100 ft mark and they look active flasher fly good bet dark green or blue

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You have fish under you 

 

Keep things simple 

 

I would run one rigger just off bottom and one 20 ft above  to target the Lakers . 15 to 25 ft leads . 

 

No dipsey yet till you master the riggers . 

 

Don't be afraid to do circles over the marks . If you are spread out vertical and same leads you should not tangle with just riggers out . 

 

I don't fish the finger lakes  just LO  but fish are fish . 

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I'd go with HB2's advice. It applies to Canandaigua and the Fingers just as in Ontario.

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None of those fish are chasing your lures ... when they chase, you'll see those arches stretch across the entire screen.  Also note ... although the screen says the fish are under your ball ... they may not be ... the sonar scans out several feet on either side of your boat (how much depends on the water depth) .... those fish could easily be 10' away from left side of your boat, and the ball could be on the right side ... separation of 15' or maybe more.

 

Even with that separation though ... the fish seem uninterested ... so here would be the game plan.

MARK THAT SPOT ... especially where you see them stacked (your 2nd photo shows 5 or 6 fish).  Turn around and go through that spot at several angles .... from north to south, south to north, east to west, west to east, NE to SW, etc.  Just keep figure 8'ing it through that point ... the reason to change direction ... if there are any underwater currents, your bait will be going faster or slower through that current, even if you maintain a steady 2 mph GPS.  

 

Also, think about slowing down or speeding up by 0.2 to 0.3 mph.  

 

Also, change your presentation ... colors, lure type, etc. If you have multiple rods, use different colors and lures on each rod to minimize your time to test options.

 

Keep going through that mark throwing a bunch of variables at them, and hopefully something works. If you find something that works, change all or most of your rods over to that presentation.

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Also, keep in mind that just because your sonar is telling you that your bait is at 100 ft depth , it’s NOT   Your depth finder is actually a distance finder   It’s showing your weight at 100 , that’s 100 ft from the transducer , not 100 ft depth. Because of blowback , you may need to let out a lot more cable to actually reach 100 ft depth.  

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On 5/17/2022 at 3:34 PM, troutman10 said:

Thanks for the quick responses. I'll keep those things in mind. Will have to throw out a spin dr and fly next time. 

 

Also, forgot to add this one in there. 

20220515_090459.jpg

If you see fish like this consistently, drop a cowbell and Gambler Rigs down and get your speed under 1.8 at the ball.  When they are grouped like this, they are as easy as it gets!

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13 minutes ago, GAMBLER said:

If you see fish like this consistently, drop a cowbell and Gambler Rigs down and get your speed under 1.8 at the ball.  When they are grouped like this, they are as easy as it gets!

 

👍

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