Fishing is the perfect hobby. It can be relaxing or exciting, laid-back or competitive, and anything in between. There are all sorts of different ways to enjoy fishing, just as there are all sorts of different people who love the sport. One great way to fish is trolling, and if you’ve never tried trolling for fish, you should give it a shot!
What is trolling?
First things first: what is trolling, anyway? Trolling is a fishing technique that involves moving your hook through the water at a constant speed. It’s done with a boat, which enables the person fishing to cover a lot of ground (or perhaps we should say “cover a lot of water”) in search of fish, and to then entice the fish with a moving target that resembles a tasty meal.
In order to use trolling to catch fish, you’ll need a boat with a trolling motor. A regular boat motor isn’t suited for trolling — it’s better suited for jetting around and getting from place to place quickly, without worrying about how much noise you’re making. A trolling motor is a little boat motor that can be raised and lowered. It makes the right amount (and kind) of noises, and it helps create a wake that attracts fish.
When it’s time to go trolling, you just lower the trolling motor and take off. Cast the line and you’re all set to go: the hook will trail along after the boat, ready to trick an unlucky fish. Generally, trolling involves securing a few rods to the boat and moving the boat along so that the multiple lines trail in the wake. The wake acts as its own lure, attracting fish to the bubbling action.
Trolling is a simple technique, but there are a lot of ways to improve your trolling. Here are a few suggestions.
Use enough fishing rods and arrange them correctly
Trolling often involves using multiple rods. Are you using enough? Did you arrange them correctly? Try spreading out your lines to ensure that you have all of your bases covered. If fish can hang out in your wake without finding your hooks, then you need more rods. Use outriggers and other equipment to spread your rods out wider than your boat actually is. Your boat’s wake is wider than your boat, so your rod and line setup should be, too.
Got a bite? Great, but don’t stop the boat. While some anglers may be tempted to put the boat in neutral while they reel, you’ll have a much better chance of landing the fish if you keep everything in motion as you try to land it. Let the boat help you reel in your big catch.
Just be sure that you’re doing so safely, of course. If you bring a friend or two along when you go trolling, you may find it a whole lot easier to handle the multitasking that trolling sometimes requires.
Get a better trolling motor
It may be a poor carpenter who blames his tools, but there’s no denying that life gets a little easier when you have the right equipment for the task at hand. If you want great trolling results, you may want to invest in a better trolling motor. And not all trolling motors are created equal. The best ones are more attractive to fish and more reliable, so consider upping your game if you think your old motor is scaring away the fish.
Fishing is whatever you want it to be: it can be an idle pastime or a serious passion. If you’re interested in trolling and are dedicated to getting better at the technique, then the tips above should be helpful for you. Now get out onto the water and put them into practice!