Al Lindner Loves Snap-jigging Weed Walleyes

Of all the ways there are to catch summer walleyes, this might be legendary fisherman Al Lindner’s favorite, from our friends at Target Walleye…

Live bait was a way of life for me until about 9 years ago. I finally woke up and discovered that this mentality had me missing out on a red-hot artificial-lure bite up in the shallow weeds. Most walleye anglers won’t venture up into the jungle. They’ve had a mental block against fishing heavy cover for years. Fact is, most walleye anglers start at the edge of the weed bed and work their way out to open water with live bait. Promise me you’ll do just the opposite on your next trip—instead put on a soft plastic minnow-mimicking lure and fish right in the weeds.

In a perfect situation, I’m talking about scattered weeds in less than 12 feet. Typically, I’m fishing in just 4 to 8 feet of water. You’re not doing a lot of casting; you’re simply allowing the bow-mount trolling motor to move you along. As you go, you’re snapping or ripping a lure through the weeds, much like you would to catch bass.

You’re depending on walleyes to visually see your soft-plastic lure darting through the weeds and react. That’s why braided line is important: it gets you through the weeds much easier. I’m using spinning tackle with 10-pound-test braided line and a 30-inch fluorocarbon leader.

My lure of choice is soft-plastic paddletail or split-tail minnow, and I’m snap-jigging the lure with fast, erratic movements of the rod. Make sure you’re using a 1/4-ounce jig head with a wire-keeper barb on it, in order to keep your soft-plastic minnow from tearing loose every time you rip it through the weeds.

Note: we want to thank Al and Ron Lindner, Jim Kalkofen, and the team at Target Walleye/Ice for this solid fishing tip. You can subscribe to free, twice-a-week emails from Target Walleye, at targetwalleye.com.