I wasn't going to write a report after Friday's trip but after I read Captain Juls report from the day before (slow trip, Lorain area), I thought this might be of interest to a few of you. My last trip out was in late August and I got blanked, so have not been out until this past Friday. Friday forecast was south winds 10-15 so figured an easy troll out and who knows what on the way back. I still had a reasonable number of worms left from the 10 dozen I bought at Erie Outfitters in early August but they looked like they were on their last leg so decided to fish worm harnesses and get rid of them. My last trip out used up a lot of worms because I was constantly feeding junk fish and small walleyes.
Got a late start and was not on the water until 9 so motored out to 35ft, slowed down and took a look on the fish finder and nada. Powered back up and moved to 43 feet and still nothing. Once I got to 48 feet deep, I saw the familiar pattern of marks grouped down between 40 feet and the bottom, just like last trip. I put out the lines and targeted just off the bottom. After about 10 minutes, I got a nibble on one of the poles, grabbed it and nothing. I kept the pole in my hand and moved the harness forward and let it fall back. Felt another nibble and set the hook and walleye #1 was in the boat. It did not seem significant at the time but I hooked the walleye with the trailing treble hook right at the bottom/end of his gills. The rest of the 5 total fish that I caught that day came from church planer boards with tadpoles and worm harnesses. All summer I have been fishing planer boards to target 30-35 feet of water but had to let more line out to get the bait deeper. This made a difference in that it was harder to read the action of the planer boards. As a result, despite my frequent checking, I was never able to detect the walleye bite when it happened and was dragging fish around until the next check. Part of the problem was that the fish just were not that active and not biting aggressively. In addition, the junk fish were not even biting. No sheephead, 5 or 6 very small white perch and 3 spike walleyes for 3 hours of fishing. That is some inactivity for you. Strange day on the lake. I felt fortunate to catch 5 fish (1 17" and the rest 23") but it was not that rewarding because I was dragging them around. I spent most of my time in 50-55 feet of water northwest of the ramp and tried different speeds and trolled different directions but no difference in activity level. The killer was I only had three fish when I turned back towards the ramp and trolled back in and about half way back, the wind direction changed from south to east. I had my 5 by then but have never done well in any east wind I have encountered and got no bites the rest of the way back. On the plus side, did not have to fight the south winds on the way back in.