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Properly Tuned Crankbaits are Critical for Catching Walleye

A wonderful time of year is upon us. The weather is cooling, and so is the water.  It’s also when I switch from trolling crawler harnesses to running crankbaits almost exclusively. They create no mess in the boat, I don’t have to feed them, and they won’t die

While everyone will have their own opinion on what crankbaits work the best on Lake Erie’s Western Basin, my favorites have always been Reef Runners, Deep Husky Jerks, and Smithwick Rogues. But, none of these baits will catch a fish if they are not properly tuned. 

A bait can become out of tune by catching a big fish and lifting it by the bait, getting it caught and tangled in the net, or simply by removing one out of a new box. Yes, some lures need tuning right out of the box, so it’s always best to check your bait before you send it out to work for you.

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Are these the dog days of summer?

I don’t know about you, but I can’t tell if it’s still summer or the start of an early fall around here. There have been some mornings where we were headed out on the lake at sunrise and the morning air was chilly, and the sky had that cold crisp look to it that you often see in the fall. Normally, our attire would be shorts and a t-shirt with the hope that it wouldn’t get too hot out. But, lately, we’ve donned our pants and jackets over our shorts hoping it got warm enough later in the morning to take off our outer layers.

Along with this confusion on how to dress for the weather, is the confusion on how to approach the fishing. I have only been fishing for perch since my return from my dream vacation, so like many of you, I can only read about the walleye fishing, or talk to friends who have been walleye fishing.

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Perch fishing is getting better in the western basin

Cathy Boreako

Our precious Lake Erie is turning green in the Western Basin, but from reports I have read the colder water temperatures this season are keeping it from turning to pea soup in major amounts like past seasons. But, this report is not about the green goo, it is about another green colored water creature; our beautiful Lake Erie perch. 

As you are well aware, we had a major cold front last week, with strong northwest winds that blew for 3 days straight. The walleye bite had slowed down, so I took an opportunity to go after some perch. From the reports I could gather, several areas are doing well for limits of nice sized perch. There’s a big area up on the northwest side of North Bass Island, that’s south of “Taco Bell” (red can on the border), that’s doing very well right now. Expect to go through a lot of smaller throw back sized perch, white perch, and sheephead to get a limit of 8-12 inch sized perch.

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