Fall is a great time to fish lakes and streams with rapid currents. Depending on the area you fish, certain species of fish- like Lake Trout, Brown Trout, and Salmon start spawning late in the summer until mid fall. What exactly are fish doing as they prepare to spawn? They are looking to reproduce and they navigate by following odors.
If you’re looking to catch these fish as they travel, there are some key tips to keep in mind.
Where to Fish
When fishing a river - especially with a fast moving current - don’t fish at the headwaters end (toward the source) of the river. When you fish with scented bait at the head of a river, the scent travels through the current and stimulates the fish further down the river. You’ll end up helping other fishermen further along the river! Instead, fish down river at the tailout. Look for the “V” shape below the run or pool of a river.
This same idea holds true when fishing on lakes. Large lakes such as the Great Lakes have prevailing currents that are different in the summer versus the winter. Fish down current from the crowds. Otherwise, you’ll end up exciting the fish and sending them to the next person in line.
What to Use
Of course, you’ll want to use the right scent. Start with Dr. Juice’s Super Concentrated Trout & Salmon Scent or any of our five species-specific scents, depending on your fishing location. Eggs are great for fishing this time of year because they not only hold scent, they have an attractive scent of their own! Yarn is another great option, especially when fishing for Steelheads; these fish are notorious for feeling the bite, and yarn will stick to their teeth. It also is best at holding a scent.
Using the Right Methods
When trolling, it’s important to move at the right speed and in the right direction with the current. Speed and depth can be determined using a few different methods. There are a ton of different systems and expensive gadgets you buy to help. You can use a protractor and a bit of math to determine depth and speed. You can also keep a sharp eye on the bubbles as your downrigger wire goes down. When the bubbles do down about 8-10 inches under water then resurface, you’re at about the right speed. Approximately 2.0 to 2.5 MPH.
Another tip you can use when fishing a current is to add some scent upriver from the fish. Apply your Dr. Juice scent directly to the water. This will stimulate fish miles down the river.
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View our full episode on fishing a current here: