Way Of The Walleye: Creek Mouths

Fishing Summer Peak Rivers: Creek Mouths
By CD RomCo

This information is presented as promotional material for Way of the Walleye CD Rom and is protected by copyright. © 1996 CD RomCo and its Licensors

Occasional heavy rains flush food into the main river via inlet streams, drawing fish toward and into creek mouths, perhaps even flooding a bit of cover. Toss a snag-resistant lure like aspinnerbait into the grass or logs and work a short way up the inlet until the water gets too shallow or the weeds too thick to attract fish. This is mostly small pike territory with the occasionalinflux of smallmouth bass, but don't discount the possibility of a few walleyes taking up temporary residence in the feeder creek until water levels begin to drop again and fishreturn to the main river. Most of the time, however, traverse long shallow featureless sections, dodging propeller busters and inch-deep sandbars, then spend your time in and around deeper slots and holes. For walleyes, lower baited three-way rigs or jigs to the bottom, crank up a couple inches, then let the current move you around a large eddy, occasionally dropping down to reconfirm that your bait is near bottom. Eddies tend to be large and slow when the river is low, and walleyes can be spread throughout a hole instead of tightly concentrated.

If a hole's large, try power trolling a minnow imitator on a three-way rig to cover water faster, or try longline trolling a diving crankbait. Select a lure that dives just deep enough to scratch bottom in the deepest portion of the hole, yet doesn't snag too much if debris is present. Troll upcurrent and downcurrent. Sometimes fish display a preference. Downstream is the most natural bait presentation, but speed is necessary to make crankbaits dance. Lures wobble better when they're worked upstream, but slow down just enough to get them rolling. Whatever works. Pause occasionally to cast to prominent shallow outcroppings. It's amazing how many large walleyes you catch while casting cranks against rocky shoreline points and shoals for smallmouths, and how many big smallies you catch while trolling cranks through deep slots and holes for walleyes. All is fair on the river. Domains overlap, and you never know for sure which species will bite next.