Boating Lake County Blog

Fisherman’s Report: Walleye

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One of Lake County’s most sought-after game fish, the wall­eye — also known as pick­er­el” or walleyed pike” — is prized for the chal­lenge of hook­ing one, and for its deli­cious white, flaky filets.

Lake County’s many lakes and water­ways offer excel­lent oppor­tu­ni­ties for fish­ing for wall­eye – par­tic­u­lar­ly in the Fox Waterway’s Chain O’Lakes, a region which attracts not only ama­teur anglers from all over the Mid­west, but also is the home base for the World Wall­eye Association’s Tour­na­ment Trail, a pop­u­lar series of catch-and-release fish­ing competitions.

The name wall­eye” comes from the fact that the fish’s eyes point out­ward, as if look­ing at the walls. The eyes also have a unique, reflec­tive light-gath­er­ing lay­er, which allows the fish to see well at night, in murky water, and oth­er low-light conditions.

Wall­eye can reach lengths of over 30 inch­es and 10 pounds or more. High­ly adapt­able, wall­eye can be found in many types of lakes and rivers. They like slight­ly tur­bid water con­di­tions and rocky bot­toms with drop-offs.

There are three pop­u­lar meth­ods used to catch walleyes, depend­ing on loca­tion and con­di­tions: jig­ging (a lure that bounces along the bot­tom), using a slip bob­ber (which helps sus­pend bait deep­er than a tra­di­tion­al fixed bob­ber) and cast­ing crank bait (anoth­er method to get your lure far­ther down the water column).

Whether you’re look­ing for an excit­ing catch-and-release,” or are cast­ing for a meal fea­tur­ing one of the best-tast­ing fresh-water fish, you can’t go wrong with the wall­eye from lakes and rivers in Lake Coun­ty.

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