Trolling Shad Raps

What a great day of fishing  yesterday turned out to be, even though it didn’t start out that way. But you know what they say about any day of fishing.

I wanted to get in some casting for Muskie and the weather looked right for it.  I call it “casting for Muskie” because other than one smaller Muskie that I caught on Cass Lake in Minnesota by accident, that is all it has been. So Jim and I headed to the lake about noon. Jim doesn’t cast for Muskie but he just likes go along and besides it’s nice to have a net man and a photographer. (ha ha) I took a couple rods with Shad Raps tied on so he could cast for whatever.

After a couple hours or so of casting a 1 1/2 ounce spinner bait my back was betting sour and my confidence was waning, so I decided we would troll. I trolled a 6″ Jake for Muskie and Jim trolled a Shad Rap for a while with no action.

My confidence waned some more so I decided to just troll both Shad Raps and I soon caught one small Large Mouth at the dam. We continued trolling along the shore up toward the shallower end of the lake with no action until we got to the west end where the deepest water is about 12 foot. This is where the action started.

I caught a decent Large mouth, then a Wiper (Cross between a White Bass and a Striped Bass) and then Jim caught a Wiper so things were looking up. Then I caught a 17″ Large Mouth. Probably the biggest I’ve caught out of Thunderbird so far.


We continued to troll in about 8 to 12ft  of water for a bit longer with no more hits so it was looking like they had stopped hitting, but that was about to change.

Suddenly my pole bent and the drag started to scream. I grabbed the rod out of the rod holder and put the trolling motor in reverse as fast as it would go for a bit. Then I tightened the drag so I could fight the fish. As I fought the fish it actually came toward the boat and went in the other direction. The fight probably lasted another minute or so before we were able to see that it was a Wiper. As I got her closer to the boat Jim was ready. (Net man and photographer)



This beauty was 22 1/2″ long and weighed 5.4 lbs.

Since it was almost sunset by that time we both decided that would be a good way to end our day of fish, so we headed for the boat ramp.


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