Night Hawk Stories... Entry 11
Fishing Rivers for Summertime Walleye
EDITOR'S NOTE: Keith Kavajecz of Kaukauna, Wisconsin, a pro walleye fisherman, specializes in tournament fishing and walleye-fishing promotions. Kavajecz, who has fished in walleye tournaments since 1986, won the 1994 and 1998 North American Walleye Anglers Angler-of-the-Year award. He and his son, Tommy, won the 1998 North American Walleye Anglers Team of the Year. Kavajecz and his business partner, Gary Parsons, won the Masters Walleye Circuit Team of the Year and World Championship in 1988. Keith and Gary co-host "Bass Pro Shop's Outdoor World," which airs on TNN.
QUESTION: How do you find summertime walleye?
On wing dams, we most often three-way fish for walleye using a three-way swivel. On one side of the swivel, we'll run down with a dropline to a sinker, a big heavy bell sinker that usually weighs 2 to 3 ounces. We use that sinker to hit the bottom and maintain bottom contact. On the other end of the three-way swivel, we'll tie about a 2-foot leader. On the end, we'll put a light jig, a bare hook or a hook with a Berkley Power Grub. Because typically we fish stained river water, we'll use a bright chartreuse or a white Power Grub, and ahead of that we'll put some kind of a bright red bead. Basically, it's just a hook with a Power Grub on it. We'll tip that with a minnow, half of a crawler or a leech. Dale in Dubuque designed this D-rig.
Then, we'll go upstream of the wing dam and slowly slip back with the current until we feel the rock of the wing dam with that bottom weight. And then we try to pull forward about 2 feet, which puts that bait, whatever it is, right at the base where the rock of the wing dam meets the silt of the river bottom. You work yourself back and forth, once in a while dropping back feeling the rock and then pulling forward. You try to keep the rig just ahead of the face of the wing dam where the walleye will typically be. People make the biggest mistake on wing dams by thinking that the current hits that wing dam and then goes over it, so the fish will sit behind it in the calm water. But the actively feeding fish actually will sit on the face. So fish the face, where the current pounds into it.
At what depth do you fish?
Tomorrow: Fishing Lakes for Summertime Walleye