Late Summer Walleye's on Little Bay de Noc!By Captain Marty Papke - September 1, 2004
This method of fishing does catch lots of fish when other methods fail. Two pieces of tackle to use consist of a 1/4 ounce jig like Northland's Round Head and several assorted sizes of Power Baits and the "new" Berkley "Gulp" artificials. Color choices and sticking with natural colors; blacks, whites along with pumpkinseed. As mentioned earlier by using a certain method of fishing and sticking to it does pay off. A Power Grub or "Gulp" slid up and over the bait-keeper of the jig head holding it in place combined with a 6 to 7 foot medium action jigging rod and spinning reel spooled with 8 pound XL. Using heavier line allows the snap-jigging method to work at its best.
An explanation of using this method is pretty straightforward. Choosing you're fishing area and casting out your jig/grub combination let this 1/4-ounce jig settle to the lake floor. Once on the lake floor, hold you're fishing rod at an approximate 45-degree angle begins with a wrist pop, snapping action. Popping this jig off bottom about a foot or so stop and let the jig/grub drop back to the lake floor. Continue this process until your vertical below the boat and begin again with another cast. Many times strikes usually occur with the drop of the jig/grub combo. Although fishing open water is the easiest approach fishing weedbeds can be a bit "tougher!" Watching the jig/grub drop it many times will settle into a weed clump or weed stem and become hung up, by lightly snapping the jig you will rip it free of the weeds and it will again begin to descend to the lake floor upon where slack line meaning on bottom again doing the wrist pop method.
Another method is back-trolling, making your cast long lining the jig combination and while going backwards on structure keep snapping the rod tip giving the bait lots of action! If you're having troubles working weedbeds with a Round Head jig you might choose a weedless type jig like the Weed Weasel, its fiber gaurds do a great job working heavy cabbage or coontail and can still be tipped with a Power Grub. It's important to always remember that this fishing method is a fast method of getting reaction strikes. Using a hook file will keep those hooks extremely sharp slicing through the weeds and ensuring good hook sets.
The last several years with the water becoming clearer, noticeable weed beds are popping up in the northern most part of the bay. Areas like these hold "walleye" all the time! Other areas to concentrate on would be the Beach House areas in Gladstone and following both the east and west shorelines to and beyond Escanaba have some great green weedbeds.
The next time you're looking for another alternate plan to fishing walleye try a "snap-jigging" method and find how much fun you really can have! Our goals throughout the past 25 years and counting of being a fishing guide and Charter Captain have been, "teaching people how to fish!" and we'll continue that legacy for a long time to come. If you're looking to fishing and learning more about Little and Big Bay de Noc let us take you out on the water and enjoy fishing!
Captain Marty Papke