It has been recommended to me by several people on here and on Facebook that I look into trolling if I wanted to catch big fish in Wisconsin. I just bought a set of 5 nice line counter poles from a friend that decided to buy all new trolling gear for himself. My question is what other gear should I invest in? How do I get started? What Should I know before I throw anything in the water? I'm open to any constructive advice please
New to Trolling
As mentioned, easiest way to shorten the learning curve is to fish with someone who knows what they're doing be that a guide or a friend. Also, the Precision Trolling App is very helpful for dive curves for specific lures. Nice thing about the app is that you can purchase the curves for the lures that you have rather than buying the book that has a bunch of lures that you probably don't have in your tackle box. Also, watch the regulations on how many lines you can have out. On big waters like Green Bay and Winnebago, you can have 3 lines per person. On inland lakes, it may be fewer.
The lake I fish is known for Walleye, Muskie, and Pike.
You will want to get inline planer boards. I have offshore brand. Other brands work good also some do not. Set them up with the OR-16 clips (orange) on the front and the OR-18 clips (black/locking) on the back. That way you will not lose a board (the OR-18 are very secure) and either you or the fish can "snap" the front clip free to minimize the board diving and creating drag when reeling in. If you have never fished boards before go with a buddy who has to shorten the learning curve.
Eh. You will probably want to do a google search for dive charts concerning baits. They should show you how deep the baits will go given a certain type of line (poundage) and line you let out.
There are many "apps" out there that can help with this as well.
Or, you can do it the old fashioned way. Take a notebook out with you, let out line on your bait, record when it starts ticking bottom. Trial and Error time.
But yah, you are going to want to know how deep your baits are running.
Friend who sold you the poles would be a great place to start, share some time on the water. Otherwise what are you targeting?
Hire a guide who trolls alot (perhaps Green Water Walleye on Castlerock & Petenwell) , they can show you how its done and what you'll need.