Tips and Tricks from a Fishing Guide

By Dave Duwe - April 1, 2010
There are tricks that can make a fishing guide seem like a better angler than the average fisherman. There are a range of skill levels in fishing, from a guy who fishes National Tour Events to the guy that ties an overhand knot to attach a hook to his line. I would rate myself somewhere in between, maybe slightly above average. Not like some of my friends who can catch fish out of a bathtub.

The most important thing an angler can have while fishing is confidence. When I go fishing, I don't care if the wind is blowing from the east or if we have just had a 20 degree cold front. I realize that fishing may be tough under certain conditions, but I've never caught a fish while at home.

It is important to always fish for what is biting. Some days, the crappies are suspended and feeding heavily, while other days the Northern Pike are just off bottom biting on lindy rigged suckers. I'm always prepared for whatever bites on that particular day. I don't lock myself into only one type of fishing pattern. On a typical guide trip, my boat will have 15-20 fishing rods rigged and ready to go.

Mobility for me is also very critical. If I put my anchor down 3-4 times a year that's probably on the high end. However, mobility can also be a hindrance. I have found a lot of people find active fish and don't stay on the fish until they stop biting, they leave biting fish behind in search of more biting fish, that's a bit risky for me. I fish very slow and if I find fish, I stick with it until they stop biting.

Some clients I fish with have a problem using live bait. I see no shame in catching fish on what they are biting on. I would rather catch fish on crank baits or a jig, however in most applications, nothing beats a live bait presentation. The best way to present a nightcrawler is a single hook and a plain round split shot. On most days, my tackle box could fit in my pocket.

Author Dave Duwe
Dave Duwe
Full-time guide Dave Duwe owns and operates Dave Duwe's Guide Service, featuring the lakes of Walworth County, WI. Dave has been guiding for over 20 years and is one of Southeastern Wisconsin's best multi-species anglers. Dave is an accomplished outdoor writer and seminar speaker. He is a member of the Great Lakes Outdoor Writers Association and Walworth County Visitor Bureau. Sponsors include: Lund Boats(Jerry's Sport Service Inc.), Mercury Marine, Arkie Jigs, and Vexilar Marine Electronics, a pro-staff member of Minn-Kota trolling motors,Hummingbird graphs, Cannon downriggers, Lindy, Pure Fishing and All Terrain Tackle. For more information, please check out Dave's website www.fishlakegeneva.com .