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Up to date Jan 24, 2023 1:11 PM

Fickle…That one phrase alone explains a walleye greatest, so it’s no marvel discovering nice walleye lures appears the identical. When focusing on these choosy predators it’s typically feast or famine for anglers, with both a livewell or stringer stuffed with frisky fish at day’s finish, or, a head hung low again on the dock. As soon as hooked, anglers will discover there are not any lengthy, drag-screaming runs; no leaps and bounds; solely a little bit of bulldogging again to the shore or boat. It’s that aforementioned feast, nonetheless—the walleye’s nice desk fare—why they’re so wanted. And utilizing probably the greatest walleye lures may help you take pleasure in recent filets throughout your subsequent dinner.    

How We Selected The Finest Walleye Lures

In the course of the hay days of walleye fishing, when the Skilled Walleye Path (PWT), RCL and FLW tournaments have been in full swing, I used to be blessed to be one of many major dudes protecting the ideas and strategies utilized by one of the best of one of the best walleye anglers in the USA. And I’m right here to inform ya, the development of lures and equipment through the years I bought to witness first hand was fairly astonishing. And it was the very professionals I had the prospect to pre-fish with who had their arms in serving to create right now’s walleye baits.

With that mentioned, nonetheless, there are some lures which have stood the check of time, that are nonetheless a go-to for derby anglers and guides alike. Due to this, the baits that confirmed themselves time and time once more as being high-quality fish catchers are why one of the best walleye lures for 2023 have been chosen.   

The Finest Walleye Lures: Critiques & Suggestions

Finest General: Northland Fishing Sort out Deep-Vee Jig

Finest General

Why It Made the Reduce: This jig can be utilized for vertical and pitching techniques, as nicely cast-and-retrieve strategies, and its distinctive head makes it much less prone to snag.  

Key Options

  • Weights: 1/16-, 1/8-, ¼- and three/4- ounce 
  • 12 head colours
  • Massive eyes for fish to zone in on

Execs

  • Barb holds reside bait and plastics comfortable to the pinnacle
  • Easy design, no shifting components 
  • Lengthy-shank hook

Cons

  • No trailer hook
  • Dear in comparison with different jigs 

Each event professional and information I do know, (and I do know loads) say a jig is essentially the most versatile walleye lure ever made. Northland’s been a staple model for walleye anglers for many years, and the form of their Deep-Vee Jig is among the most unusual. The pinnacle, huge on the high and narrowing down on the backside, permits the bait to fall straight and quick by way of the water column, as nicely trip true throughout a gradual retrieve or when rip-jigging. Its form additionally helps cut back snagging in rocks as simply as a typical ball-head jig.

Finest for Trolling: Rapala Down Deep Husky Jerk

Finest for Trolling

Rapala Down Deep Husky Jerk is the best walleye lure for trolling.

Why It Made the Reduce: Will get into the strike zone of suspended walleyes with out including snap weights, and has a superb wobble when trolled at most any pace. 

Key Options

  • Size: 4-, 4 ¾- and 5 ½-inches
  • Weight: 3/8-, ½ and 13/16-ounce
  • 24 colours

Execs

  • Sturdy, impartial buoyant physique
  • Wobbles correctly proper out of the package deal
  • 2 to three Premium VMC black nickel Spherical Bend hooks, relying on dimension

Con

Lauri Rapala—credited for creating the world’s first floating minnow lure—utilizing a shoemaker’s knife and sandpaper, created a lure from cork in 1936. The Down Deep Husky Jerk has that very same life-like form that’s been fooling fish ever since.  The bigger dimension of this lure can attain depths of twenty toes when trolled, might be pulled at a creep at 1 MPH, and runs nicely at as much as 4 MPH (1.5 to 2.5 MPH most typical pace for ‘eyes). This crankbait works wonders when forged from boat or shore, as nicely; diving all the way down to 10 toes on the retrieve. The impartial buoyancy properties of this bait makes it droop throughout a pause. It’s throughout the hiatus in swimming that fish prefer to whack it. 

Finest Funds: Berkley Flicker Shad 

Finest Funds

Berkley Flicker Shad is the best walleye lure on a budget.

Why It Made the Reduce: Huge bang for the lesser buck, and one of many extra versatile lures

Key Options

  • Size: 1 ½-, 2-, 2¼, 2 ¾- and three ½ inches
  • Weight: 1/8- , ¼-,  ½-, 3/16- and 5/16- ounce
  • Heavy-duty plastic development
  • 62 colours

Execs

  • Good for trolling
  • Good for casting
  • Multi-species lure

Cons

  • Lip might be broken when hitting rocks

In 2007, I watched Gary Parsons win a walleye event alongside the jap shoreline of Wisconsin’s Lake Winnebago, whereas rocking in 3-footers. He and his beginner co-angler have been casting a prototype lure from Berkley, which solely got here in a single shade on the time – white. Since then, the lure, now generally known as the Flicker Shad, has confirmed efficient when casted and trolled. General, you get good-quality elements on this crankbait, which you’ll be able to typically discover on sale for slightly below $4, with a instructed retail worth going for $5.99. It is a good factor as there are such a lot of sizes and colours to select from you’ll be able to afford to purchase a spread. It is a nice lure to strive when trolling with lead core, as nicely 

Finest Swimbait: Z-Man DieZel MinnowZ

Finest Swimbait

Z-Man DieZel MinnowZ is the best walleye lure swimbait.

Why It Made the Reduce: One of the sturdy soft-bodied baits available on the market, and has a wider wobble than most swimbaits throughout the retrieve.

Key Options

  • Size: 4-, 5-, and 7-inches
  • Excessive stretchy materials
  • 40 colours

Execs

  • Snag resistant
  • Simple to make use of
  • Resilient to put on and tear
  • Made within the USA

Cons

  • Will react and soften different plastics if saved out of the bag

A swimbait might be the best synthetic lure to make use of. Whereas a twitch right here and there may induce a strike when fish are finicky, for essentially the most half, a sluggish, regular retrieve is all that’s crucial. The DieZel MinnowZ is fabricated from ElaZtech – a particularly stretchy materials, which retains it from ripping aside, even after fooling dozens of toothy walleyes. With just one, single hook, this lure will run by way of weeds with out turning into a tangled mess, and it’s lengthy, slender physique means that you can forged additional, as well. Z-Man makes a number of swimbait heads that work wonders with this bait; however don’t neglect about one of the best walleye lure general, the Deep-Vee Jig talked about above. Simply bear in mind to maintain them of their bag when saved as they don’t play nicely with different plastics. And don’t toss ‘em on the dashboard of your car, as a pal of mine discovered the laborious approach.  

Finest for Rivers: Lunker Metropolis Fin-S Fish  

Finest for Rivers

Lunker City Fin-S Fish is the best walleye lure for rivers.

Why It Made the Reduce: The lure’s lengthy, slender form cuts by way of present simply. Will be fished quick, sluggish and all speeds in-between. 

Key Options

  • Size: 2 ½-, 3 ½-, 4-, 5-, 5 ¾-, 7- and 10-inches
  • A number of actions
  • As much as 70 colours, relying on dimension

Execs

  • Good all for seasons (even when ice fishing)
  • Casts far
  • Works in clear or stained water

Cons

  • Can get chewed up by toothy fish

When vertical jigging from a ship in giant, deep rivers, the Fin-S Fish might be fished at backside when you drift downstream. Simply do your greatest to maintain your line straight up and down as you bounce it alongside the underside. Relying on present pace, a jighead as much as one ounce could also be wanted. The primary time I noticed walleyes being caught with this fork-tail minnow softbait, nonetheless, was from the banks of the Missouri River, under the powerhouse holding again Lake Oahe, in 1996. Right here, the anglers that placed on a catching clinic would forged out barely upstream, then work the jig again with a darting motion. Lesson discovered.   

Finest for Spring: Customized Jigs & Spins AuthentX Pulse-R

Finest for Spring

Custom Jigs & Spins AuthentX Pulse-R is the best walleye lure for spring.

Why It Made the Reduce: Physique employs distinctive rocking/swimming motion when fished slowly, as nicely added paddle tail thumps simple for fish to zone in on.

Key options

  • Size:  2 9/20- and three ¼-inches
  • Ribbed physique
  • 24 colours

Execs

  • Will be bought in bulk (as much as a 96 pack) 
  • Will be fished as a jig, worm or swimbait
  • Good in deep water or shallow water

Cons

  • Paddle tail could tear after a catch

In the course of the walleye spring season, when water’s nonetheless chilly, the cold-blooded walleye can change into as torpid as a fish can get. Generally, they’re not going to swim quick or far to take an providing. The AuthentX Pulse-R has a large ribbed physique that enables the bait to be fished extraordinarily sluggish and nonetheless have loads of vibration from the ribbing, as nicely a waggling motion through its skinny paddle tail. When casting and rip jigging it, the water resistance makes this lure fall ever so slowly, which is an efficient ploy alongside the perimeters of weed beds. River anglers will drift the lure to and round wing dams, which fish use to interrupt the currant. A protracted forged and regular retrieve and it’s a swimbait you’ll be able to reel in at a creep. 

Finest for Summer season: Northland Fishing Sort out Professional Walleye Float’n Harness

Finest for Summer season

Northland Fishing Tackle Pro Walleye Float’n Harness is the best walleye lure for summer.

Why It Made the Reduce: This crawler harness is made with high quality elements, and floats up off backside and into an energetic ’eye’s strike zone. 

Key Options

  • Size: 40-inch harness
  • Blade: Dimension 4
  • Two size-4 octopus-style hooks
  • 8 colours

Execs

  • Changeable blade through a pace clevis
  • UV beads and painted blades 
  • Lengthy harness retains fish from spooking

Cons

  • Could have to get replaced if a northern pike whacks it

Crawler harnesses, just like the Northland Float’n Harness, are a walleye angler’s staple throughout the summer season months, particularly when the water warms and fish transfer to cooler, deeper haunts. A variety of space might be lined all through a day when trailing behind a Northland Slick-Stick backside bouncer. The added scent of a full of life night time crawler nipped by way of its tiptop and mid physique is at all times a fish pleaser. If pesky perch or ‘gills are nipping the tails of your worms, strive a softbait worm, reminiscent of a Berkley PowerBait Energy Nightcrawler. (Generally the walleyes desire this over the true factor, as nicely.) One tip anglers overlook is to not drag the bottom-bouncer on backside, however moderately have it simply “tick” it. 

Finest for Fall: Reef Runner Cicada 

Finest for Fall

Reef Runner Cicada is the best walleye lure for fall.

Why It Made the Reduce: Taller, shorter physique than most bladebaits; one thing totally different the walleyes don’t see typically.

Key Options

  • Weight: 1/16-, 1/8-, ¼-, 3/8-, ½-, and ¾-ounce
  • Two replicable double-point hooks
  • 21 colours

Execs

  • Simple to make use of
  • Simple-to-eat dimension triggers bites
  • One piece (aside from hooks) 

Cons

  • Could twist and hook line throughout the forged

There’s one thing a few lure with a number of vibration and a quick fall that triggers walleyes to strike in autumn. The Cicada might be ripped with a fast raise of the rod tip a foot or two, then allowed to drop straight down on a taut line ’til it’s simply off backside, repeating the motion again to the boat or shore. Braid is an efficient selection for this bait as its no-stretch properties permit you to really feel the slightest hit because the bait falls, which is when most strikes happen.  If fish are deep, vertical jigging straight under the boat with a fast raise and fall can do the trick. For those who hold tangling on the forged, add a small smooth plastic, reminiscent of a grub used for panfish, to the again hook. This can act as a rudder within the air, holding the lure from spinning. 

Issues to Take into account Earlier than Shopping for The Finest Walleye Lures

The elements that go into selecting lures for catching walleyes can appear limitless. Take the next under consideration when filling your deal with totes, nonetheless, and also you’ll up your odds of catching some.

Price

Fortunately for anglers, one of the best walleye lures aren’t too costly compared to baits for different species. The bulk are nicely below the $10 mark, with many half of that but. However don’t be fooled by a walleye lure with the prettiest paint job. It’s the wiggle and waggle that units one of the best aside from the remainder.  

Elements

General, the extra you spend the higher elements, reminiscent of hooks and the like. The previous ought to be of the best high quality, and sticky sharp proper out of the package deal. (Trace: To check sharpness of a hook, frivolously drag its level throughout your thumbnail. If it needs to dig in, you’re good to go; if it slips simply throughout it, contact it up with a stone or file.)  

Approach

The techniques that can be utilized for focusing on walleyes is really limitless. Each pitching jigs and vertical jigging are winners; casting crankbaits and swimbaits, as nicely. Trolling both crawler harnesses or crankbaits is a well-liked ploy, furthermore pulled behind in-line planer boards or with lead core line. Drifting with the wind or present whereas utilizing reside bait or jigs takes its justifiable share of those prickly-toothed predators, additionally. And don’t neglect casting any bait into shallower water, as walleyes will get hold of prey in skinnier water than most anglers understand. General, it’s no matter method you want to make use of most frequently that may take nearly all of your fish.  

Gear

Selecting the best gear for utilizing one of the best walleye lures could be a little extra taxing. It’ll all depend upon the method you’ve chosen. When jigging, for instance, a 5 1/2- to six ½-foot medium-light-power fast-action spinning rod, with spinning reel stuffed with 6- to 8-pound-test braid is most typical. Alternatively, 10-pound-test braid or fluorocarbon coupled with a medium-power moderate-action 6 ½- to 7 ½-foot rod is most popular when casting cranks. Gentle-power rods with a sluggish, smooth motion using 6-pound monofilament or fluorocarbon are good for live-bait personations. Trolling with planer boards or lead core takes just a little extra specialised gear, requiring 7- to 9 ½-foot medium-power rods with a stiffer butt part however smooth tip that may take the additional torque.

FAQs

Q: Are you able to catch walleyes at night time?

Sure. Actually, after the solar units is when the massive ladies come out from their lairs to feed. It is a nice time to troll or forged crankbaits. Simply be very cautious to not hook your buddy. Additionally bear in mind to maintain it easy when fishing at nighttime. Tangles and the like appear 10 instances worse when you’ll be able to’t see what you’re doing.

Q: Will walleyes hit spoons?

They positive will. Trolling smaller size-0 or size-1 spoons, like these from Warrior Lures, are a superb place to start out. Pulling them behind a diving weight, reminiscent of a Church Sort out Stingray Diving Weight, will get these light-weight spoons down the place they must be – within the face of suspended walleyes. Ten-pound-test monofilament is powerful sufficient to reel any dimension ‘eye, but is mild sufficient it gained’t impede a spoon’s motion. 

Q: What shade lures do walleyes like?

Simply as with all species, one of the best shade lure to make use of for walleyes will depend upon the colour of the waterway you’re fishing. In lakes which might be clear, such because the Nice Lakes and pure oligotrophic lakes of the north, baits that emulate the pure shade of the baitfish within the system ought to be tried first. Walleye are well-known for residing in tannic or stained lakes and rivers, alternatively, which is the place brightly-colored baits and metallic gold or copper shine by way of. Don’t be afraid to assume outdoors the coloring ebook, as swap to colours out of the norm. 

Ultimate Ideas on the Finest Walleye Lures

Bear in mind the primary phrase of this piece – fickle? If there was ever a fish that was inconsistent, capricious, unpredictable and simply down proper choosy, it’s the walleye. But anglers goal them with vengeance for the fish they farmed throughout the hookset or on the web. One of the best ways to catch a walleye is to check out a number of the greatest walleye lures obtainable and get ‘em within the water. Solid, troll, jig and rig; the strategies are seemingly limitless.  

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