How To Set Up Downriggers: A Comprehensive Guide
Fishing with downriggers is an effective way to target deep-water species such as salmon, trout, and steelhead. Downriggers are devices that use weights to lower bait or lures to a desired depth, allowing anglers to present their offering at the most effective level. In this article, we will go through the step-by-step process of setting up downriggers to help you catch more fish.
Step 1: Choose the Right Downrigger
There are different types of downriggers available in the market, from manual to electric. Choose the one that fits your budget and fishing needs. Electric downriggers are more convenient and easier to use, while manual downriggers are more affordable.
Step 2: Mount the Downrigger on Your Boat
Mount the downrigger on your boat’s gunwale or transom. Make sure it is securely attached and positioned in a way that allows for easy access and movement.
Step 3: Attach the Weight
Attach the weight to the downrigger cable. The weight’s size and shape will depend on the depth and the type of fish you are targeting. Make sure the weight is secure and won’t come off during use.
Step 4: Attach the Release Clip
Attach the release clip to the downrigger cable. The release clip is what holds the fishing line and releases it when a fish bites. Make sure the clip is securely attached and aligned with the fishing rod.
Step 5: Set the Depth
Set the desired depth for your bait or lure. Use a fish finder to locate the depth where the fish are feeding, and adjust the downrigger accordingly. Make sure the weight is lowered to the desired depth before attaching the fishing line.
Step 6: Attach the Fishing Line
Attach the fishing line to the release clip. Make sure the line is taut and not tangled. Slowly release the downrigger until the bait or lure is at the desired depth.
Step 7: Start Fishing
Once the bait or lure is at the desired depth, start trolling at a slow speed. Keep an eye on the fishing rod for any signs of a bite. When a fish bites, the release clip will release the fishing line, allowing you to reel in the catch.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the ideal speed for trolling with downriggers?
The ideal speed for trolling with downriggers is around 2-3 miles per hour. However, the speed may vary depending on the type of fish you are targeting and the conditions of the water.
What is the best time to use downriggers?
Downriggers are most effective when fishing for deep-water species such as salmon, trout, and steelhead. The best time to use downriggers is during the early morning or late afternoon when the fish are most active.
What is the maximum depth that downriggers can reach?
The maximum depth that downriggers can reach depends on the weight and the length of the cable. Most downriggers can reach depths of up to 100 feet or more.
What type of bait or lure should I use with downriggers?
The type of bait or lure you should use with downriggers depends on the type of fish you are targeting. Some popular options include herring, spoons, and plugs.
How do I maintain my downriggers?
To maintain your downriggers, make sure to rinse them with fresh water after each use to remove any salt or debris. Check the cables and clips for any signs of wear and tear, and replace them if needed. Store your downriggers in a dry and secure place to prevent damage.
Using downriggers can greatly improve your chances of catching fish, especially when targeting deep-water species. By following these simple steps for setting up downriggers, you can become a more successful angler and reel in more fish. Happy fishing!