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Old 02-12-2012, 08:33 PM
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Default walleye fly fishing.

Hey guys! I will be doing some walleye fishing this spring when when spawning. This is the first time fly fishing for walleye and need info on what flies are best. Also what kind of line?
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Old 02-12-2012, 09:20 PM
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Default Re: walleye fly fishing.

Well you came to the right place on this one. I'd check your local regulations or where you plan to fish though. Most places will not allow you to fish during the spawn. I'm not a big fan of going after fish during the spawn in the first place. It's also probably not the best time to try and do it either. Spawning fish tend to focus on the spawn and not so much eating. Some fish that nest will bite, but it's often a 'protect the nest' reaction rather than eating. Prespawn you will have the biggest females around coming in, but you will still have very cold water to deal with.

First thing let me ask you a couple of questions. Where do you plan to do this at? Is this a lake or river? Up here where I live we have a huge lake population that are river spawners. We also have some of the most liberal seasons around, and we are not allowed to fish during the spawn. In fact it's the only time we can't fish for them.

Just as a point of information, I do fly fish for Walleye a lot. I do pretty well at it also. I get them all Summer long. I get them in the Spring. I get them in the Fall. Every season has advantages and disadvantages, but you can still get Walleye fly fishing.
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A bunch of flies that I have found that work on Walleye.
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Old 02-15-2012, 09:10 PM
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Default Re: walleye fly fishing.

Hey DD

In the state of Kansas walleye fishing during the spawning season is permitted. I believe all walleyes in Kansas, spawn along the dam. Non in the rivers that I am aware of.

Looks like you have some great looking flies. What size are they? And what are they?
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Old 02-15-2012, 09:51 PM
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Default Re: walleye fly fishing.

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Originally Posted by oaktree View Post
Hey DD

In the state of Kansas walleye fishing during the spawning season is permitted.
I'd double check that one. Plus as I said, it's probably not the best time to target them. If you tried looking on the Internet about fly fishing for Walleye, most of the information on there is not only wrong but absolutely stupidly wrong. Normally I would have inserted a cuss word in there but this is a family forum. I kind of doubt that along the dam thing to. Unless you mean the shallow rocky areas off to the sides of it.Walleye prefer shallow gravel to spawn in. If you know where those are, then you can target them when they stage up for the prespawn. I would suggest that over the spawn. As I said, spawning fish tend to focus on the spawn rather than eating, so it's not the easiest time to fish for them plus I don't advocate basically molesting fish while they are busy insuring you have good fishing in the future. At the very least I'd suggest you not clobber any females.

The flies on the left are Clousers with the exception of the top one. Most of the time that's the best fly for Walleye. A lot of people will tell you that suspended Walleye don't bite, but that's nonsense. Every last Walleye I got last Fall was suspended. Thats what the rest of the flies are for. Walleyes that are on the top or suspended. And yes, you can also get Walleye on top. I'm not sure why you are so set on the spawn thing, but if it's because of the bad info on the internet, trust me it isn't the best time. If you let me know what lakes it is you plan to try this on, I'll look at them and see if I can't figure out a plan of attack for them that will give you good shot at getting them.
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Old 02-20-2012, 11:46 PM
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Default Re: walleye fly fishing.

Hey guys,

Diver Dan and i talked a little about walleye fishing in Kansas. He recommend to post information on walleye fishing in Kansas.

Walleye Fry Stocking Report
Walleye Fry Stocking Report / Walleye / Fish Stocking Records / Fishing / KDWPT - KDWPT


Walley Intermediates Stocking Report
Walley Intermediates Stocking Report / Walleye / Fish Stocking Records / Fishing / KDWPT - KDWPT

Walley Fingerlings Stocking Report
Walley Fingerlings Stocking Report / Walleye / Fish Stocking Records / Fishing / KDWPT - KDWPT


Walleye Forecast
Lakes
Lakes / Walleye / Fishing Forecast / Fishing / KDWPT - KDWPT

Ponds
Ponds / Walleye / Fishing Forecast / Fishing / KDWPT - KDWPT

Reservoirs
Reservoir / Walleye / Fishing Forecast / Fishing / KDWPT - KDWPT
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Old 02-21-2012, 05:40 AM
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Default Re: walleye fly fishing.

Thanks for posting all of that Oaktree. There are are not a lot of people that fish Walleye with a fly rod. Most of what you see on the internet is not very helpful. I'm glad you started this thread, so we can put some useful information out there for our members and see if we can make it a more mainstream thing. Hopefully it will help you as well. There are a couple of other members that do fish for them, both Canadians, Dark Cahill and Didjeridoo. Hopefully we can get them to add their wisdom and experience to this thread as well.

As I had said before, this is not a real common fly fishing target. Before I really got good at it, I googled it and got a large pile of steaming..... wrongness. Things like "you can only get them shallow in the Spring, then you have to tie a bottom bouncer into your leader and troll for them." Bottom bouncers are large wire and lead things designed for regular 'hardware' guys. You are not fly fishing if you are trolling a leader with a 1 1/2 ounce bottom bouncer in it. I don't care if it's on a fly rod or not. Secondly, you can get them in shallow water from ice out to freeze up, and in fact in rivers, I have learned it's the bigger fish you get shallow. At least in rivers that's true. There is a different strategy somewhat for lakes. The idea that they go deep in Summer is a well established idea among Walleye anglers. However, here is a fine example of why that needs to be reconsidered, at the minimum. This is a Walleye I got in the very end of June a few years back. I got big fish like this all the way through July and would have kept getting them, but had another spot where I was fishing them and got just as big fish.
Click the image to open in full size.
Notice a couple of things here. First, the bank is steep all the way down the river and very brushy. Second, I'm not wearing waders. By the way, there was a wild rose bush there I pulled my fly out of a lot. This is why I started spey casting for them. The river does get pretty deep pretty fast, but you are not going to be doing any 80' casts from a spot like this without getting well into the water, which by the way might get you an extra 12 or 15 feet here. I've decided that after catching a lot of big Walleye like this all through Summer, none of which were ever more than 12 feet deep or so, big Walleyes in the river like the shallow water. I think it's because the current is less closer to shore and big fish like to fight the current less.

Not all shallow water is created equal. There are certain features that will attract bigger fish. These places will almost never have a smaller 'eater' fish, so if that's what you are after, you will need a different strategy. Man has been nice enough to create a few of those features for us. Bridges are a good example. They put a bunch of rock down to stop erosion which attracts food for Walleye. Older railroad bridges have a ton of snaggy metal on the bottom. This does provide more structure, but it is seriously snaggy. I have learned a few tricks to minimize fly loss here also. It attracts Crayfish, minnows, etc. They also provide shade. Big Walleye will go much shallower on a bright sunny day if they have shade.

Interestingly, small Walleye do not seem to like the same spots. I get maybe one or two small Walleye a year. I have a couple of ideas on why that is, but I'm kind of guessing. I think smaller Walleye like us, when young don't mind swimming against more current, and I think big fish run the little ones off. Walleye are willing to go cannibal. I've seen this 'run off the little guys' thing with other species.

Another good place to look for big Walleye is where another river comes in. Especially if it has rapids or falls where it meets. This is going to sound really wrong, but the big Walleye will hang right in the very fast water where it meets the bottom of the rapids or falls. There are spots in those that if it has been left alone, will have a big fish in it almost everytime. Notice tha fast water behind me in this photo. This Walleye is typical of what I get out of these kind of spots. This fish came from behind a big rock right at the bottom of very fast rapids.

Click the image to open in full size.
Spots like tis are good for a couple of fish then generally it's over. If you can get more than three you are having a banner day. Once you get the two or three fish up in the end of the fast water, it does pay to cast around the slack pools and the current seams. Most of the time it isn't Walleye you get, but Pike and Smallies, but they are fun to. In fact I have pulled some monster pike from those seams in spots like this. Occasionally you do however get a big Walleye out in the Pike/Smallie zone. I've even had days where I got more than one out there. Keep in mnd, These are not Spring or Spawning type things, but dead on Summer. Note the lack of warm clothing.

There's a lot more, but I'll save it for another post or three.
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Old 02-21-2012, 12:14 PM
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Default Re: walleye fly fishing.

I might have accidently clicked unlike on this Dan. If so, please accept my apologies in advance. I learned on lot on this subject and will be trying it out this year since we also have walleye. Everyone I know insist you can only get them by jigging with spinning gear.
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Old 02-21-2012, 11:18 PM
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Default Re: walleye fly fishing.

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Originally Posted by rockriver View Post
I might have accidently clicked unlike on this Dan. If so, please accept my apologies in advance. I learned on lot on this subject and will be trying it out this year since we also have walleye. Everyone I know insist you can only get them by jigging with spinning gear.
No problem. No apology needed.

I hear stuff like that spinning/jigging thing all the time. Better yet, even our chamber of commerce says you can't get them at night here, and yet we do it. Are you going to be fishing for them in a river or lake? If it's a lake there are some very effective ways to get them in a lake as well. You need a boat for some of it though. For example, in late Summer, you can get Walleye in shallow bays next to weed edges feeding on leeches. A leech pattern works great. The thing with targeting Walleye in a lake rather in a river, is you get more fish but you don't get the size. I you have ever drifted spinner rigs with bait, you understand the basic boat strategy but switch the bait rig for a clouser or leech pattern with a long leader or a sink tip line. Most of the time when this effective it's early in the season and the Walleye are shallow. These is a lot to catching Walleye all of the time and everywhere, but if you fished them before with bait you already know a lot of what you need to. Just adapt it to fly fishing.
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Old 02-21-2012, 11:47 PM
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Default Re: walleye fly fishing.

As always Dan great info . Adapting to what the hardware guys do has worked for me also . Recently I've been fishing a small lake where the only real structure or inlet is the dam . All of my walleyes come from in an around that dam but there seems to be a small feeding period. The last hour before dusk no matter what season they turn on and then for about a half hour after dark. Very rarely do I catch any at other times. Anything with white or pearl flashabou seems to do the trick. I'm guessing that they move in at dusk to chase the bluegills against the walls of the dam then move out. And they seem to be all bigger fish as compared to whAt I've seen picked from the rest of the lake.
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Old 02-22-2012, 09:49 AM
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Default Re: walleye fly fishing.

Dan, I really haven't fished walleye much at all. I used to fish pike a lot with spinners and bass. It seems like I have a bunch to learn on this one. A lot of friends are walleye fisherman, so I want to add that to my list of fish to go after. I don't have a boat, but I do have canoes that I've used for fishing and love it.
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