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  • Targeting Lake Trout with Lead core line

    By Manny



    I have fished for lake trout a lot and very successfully over the last 5 years. I even joined a DEC program which we keep an anglers diary of lake trout in a stocked body of water (Kensico Dam in Westchester) in order to determine the reproduction of these lake trout and it has had tremendous success rate of naturally born fish in that fishery.


    When targeting freshwater lake trout I use a method know as "Leadcore trolling" . Lead core line is simply a braided fishing line that has a lead wire as its center core and is color coded in length and depth. This line is sold by multiple manufactures but i personally use Sufix 12lb 832. Each Leadcore reel setup i use 10 colors on each reel (100 yards) and a 12lb30ft-50ft fluorocarbon leader tied off to a swivel clip (swivel clip to change lures as you please). Its important to remember that when your using leadcore line, each time you stop trolling your line will sink and sink fast. While trolling on a Kayak or boat keep speeds between 1 & 2 mph. I have noticed good solid hits while changing directions or changing speeds




    Lake trout is a freshwater Char ( Salmonidae) and can get from 3lbs-70lbs in the great lakes. They are found in depths of 20ft-200ft. They are really hardy fish in deep water and thrive in most well oxygenated lakes , rivers and reservoirs. If you catch a lake trout they fight hard, dive down and do" Death rolls". This causes them to get wrapped in your fishing leader or line. It can be a fun fish to target. They can be caught on spoons, crankbaits, alewives, and many other presentations. I personally use sutton spoons or rapala crankbaits both jointed and non jointed. On sunny days i use dull colors and on over cast days i use brighter flashier colors. When I find them hugging the bottom of a body of water i might pull out a Jig and jig them up if im not getting any results on the LC line.


    Yes you can catch these awesome fish on live bait as well. But I have found that i have the same or better success rate with the LC trolling versus Live bait. If you are kayaking tandem i would not suggest LC trolling (it could get messy) If i am ever out with another person on my vessel i stick to Live bait and Jigging. It just seems to hard to maintain the trolling correctly. I am not saying its impossible its just easier and more fun to sit and talk with your fishing partner rather then padding , peddling , or rowing Leadcore. These fish can be found in many bodies of water but are not as populated as Bass or other trout family members. In NY i target them in the Croton Watershed but most of the reservoirs are row boat only. Except recently they have opened up Kayak access to Cannonsville, Neversink, Pepacton & Schoharie Reservoirs http://www.nyc.gov/html/dep/html/rec.../boating.shtml Permits are needed but they are free downloads https://a826-web01.nyc.gov/recpermitapp/


    Lead Core trolling is not only for freshwater ( you can use on Saltwater also) and nor is only for targeting lake trout I have caught plenty of other species of fish on LC line presentations. I have caught Brown trout, Large mouth Bass, Small mouth bass, Pickerel, Pike, Yellow perch, white perch, Bull head, Rainbow trout, and Crappie / Panfish. I know many other anglers that have caught Land lock Salmon on Leadcore as well. It's a great method of getting your lures to a selected depth without the use of a down rigger.


    Tight Lines to you all
    MANNY










    Kingdom: Animalia
    Phylum: Chordata
    Class: Actinopterygii
    Order: Salmoniformes
    Family: Salmonidae
    Genus: Salvelinus
    Species: S. namaycush