Try various fishing techniques

This past weekend, I was in Toronto to do some fishing seminars at the annual Spring Fishing and Boat Show—a large consumer show featuring fishing tackle manufacturers, retailers, boat dealers, and tourism organizations.
It is a large show with representation from all over the fishing industry.
I was doing seminars under the title “Northern Ontario Guide Secrets,” and spoke about many of my experiences as a fishing guide and some of the tricks I’ve learned for catching a variety of fish species available in Sunset Country.
Things like being more open-minded when you go walleye fishing. Instead of fishing the same jig and live bait combination on traditional spots this summer, try something different.
Walleyes are catchable in many more locations than people think, specifically in shallow water. These fish are shallow because they are hungry and they can be caught on a variety of artificial presentations.
In the middle of the summer, try casting crankbaits on wind-blown main lake rockpiles and points. You will be amazed at how many walleyes are in four-10 feet of water.
Walleye populations in Lake of the Woods and Rainy Lake are healthy, and there have never been better opportunities for catching both numbers and big fish every day.
When most people think about northern pike in the summer, the first thing they think about when considering where to find these toothy critters is in shallow, weedy bays.
This is the case in most bodies of water for numbers of smaller fish, but anglers need a different mindset if they want to catch big fish.
Big pike need big forage to satisfy their hunger, so most of them move out of the weeds to main lake rocks and open water where they can feed on smelt and ciscos.
Trolling large six- to 10-inch crankbaits selects for bigger fish.
Using a mapping GPS unit, in combination with sonar, allows anglers to troll close to large structural elements like reefs and points, where most big fish will be found.
People ask me all the time what my favourite lures and colours are for bass. The reality is I use a variety of different lures every day I’m on the water.
I can tell you I choose my baits based on what I think the bass are feeding on. Most of the larger bodies of water in Sunset Country that hold bass also have multiple forage options.
The three most important forage items to consider are perch, crayfish, and smelt.
I make my forage assumptions based on where the bass are located. Bass located in shallow water are likely focused on crayfish. Bass in weeds likely are eating perch while fish in deeper, main lake basins probably are chasing schools of smelt.
I use this information as the basis for my lure and colour selection.
Obviously, there are other forage options during specific times of the year, but these general rules should serve you well in most situations.
Shows like the one I attended in Toronto over the weekend are great for anglers because they can absorb so much great fishing information all under one roof.
Manufacturers are on hand revealing their new products aimed at helping anglers catch more fish. Retailers have their best sales of the year, and many of the best anglers and most knowledgeable minds in the fishing industry reveal their most closely-guarded secrets during seminars to help everybody catch more fish.
This particular show featured great anglers like Jim Lindner, Dave Mercer, Gord Pyzer, and many more.
There were multiple people speaking about some type of fishing technique or species at all times over the weekend.
I am fortunate to have the opportunity to attend a number of these shows over the course of the winter and I walk away from every one a more knowledgeable angler.
Next up for me is the annual Mid-Canada Boat Show taking place in Winnipeg during the first weekend in March.
If you want to see what’s new in boats and gain some new fishing knowledge, you will enjoy this show.

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