Trolling Rod's Reel's & Line

Huntermc6

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I'm looking to get into trolling for trout and salmon this spring but have not done much of it in years past. Browsing through Cabela's website there are so many different options for reels, rods and line, it's a little overwhelming to decide what to purchase. Does anyone have any suggestions for what rod lengths, action etc, types of Reels to use and what kind of line to rig up to the reels? I am going to be fishing mainly from a canoe on smaller bodies of water with a trolling motor targeting any species of trout I can find and salmon.
 

JDK

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What are you planning to troll? Mainly mono or mainly leadcore?
 

Huntermc6

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Im leaning towards mono, I bought some of the 3 way swivles and 1.5oz and 2oz weights from KTP to use on my open face reels last year. Id like to utilize that setup with better rods and reels if possible, the open face ones I use for brook fishing and just twist like crazy when trolling. Is it better to spend the extra money for leadcore?
 

JDK

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I don’t know if they still make it, or if you are committed to Cabelas, but I was going to recommend the LL bean trolling fly rod combo and a sinking flyline

but I’d also think about a 6-6 or 7 foot medium or medium light spinning rod with a Shimano or Pfluger reel
 

mowbizz

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Im leaning towards mono, I bought some of the 3 way swivles and 1.5oz and 2oz weights from KTP to use on my open face reels last year. Id like to utilize that setup with better rods and reels if possible, the open face ones I use for brook fishing and just twist like crazy when trolling. Is it better to spend the extra money for leadcore?
Where are you located? If you are within driving distance of Lake Winnipesaukee, Alan at his new tackle shop near the Meredith Hannaford will tell you how to set up for the type of fishing you want to do. I can’t recall the name of the shop now but he used to own AJ’s tackle shop near where the new shop is. He sells all kinds of trolling rigs too.
 

257Roberts

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Tie on one color of lead core line, then a tiny quality barrel swivel (ball bearing type) and 30’ of 6lb fluorocarbon leader, let out the lead core and another 20 feet or so of line, it’ll troll about 6’ down, perfect for early season fish. You can also attach the lead core to your reel line by sliding the lead core fiber up to reveal the lead core, cut the lead, then slide the your mono into the empty braid, like fishing a catheter......once the mono end hits the lead core carefully tie a couple overhand knots in the line, the now mono cored line will not slip and will slide easily through the line guides...... I use this set up on an old Garcia Mitchell 300, works great, just plan ahead and leave enough room on the spool for the lead core!
 

JDK

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I guess I would go leadcore and agree with 257. That said I like longer softer rods which I m not sure how easy they’d be to use in a canoe

my 2 leadcore rods are 8’6” Starfire and Diawa FT ML downrigger rods, paired with older Penn 209s. One has 1 and 3 colors and the other2 and 5. These rods are light enough to be fun with trout and salmon but stiff enough to set the hook and not be a noodle.

the FT rods are $14 or $16 at fishusa.
 

Huntermc6

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Where are you located? If you are within driving distance of Lake Winnipesaukee, Alan at his new tackle shop near the Meredith Hannaford will tell you how to set up for the type of fishing you want to do. I can’t recall the name of the shop now but he used to own AJ’s tackle shop near where the new shop is. He sells all kinds of trolling rigs too.
I'm a little far from there for a quick trip but I drive past that exact spot on the way to the inlaws. I'll stop by next time and check the place out.

Tie on one color of lead core line, then a tiny quality barrel swivel (ball bearing type) and 30’ of 6lb fluorocarbon leader, let out the lead core and another 20 feet or so of line, it’ll troll about 6’ down, perfect for early season fish. You can also attach the lead core to your reel line by sliding the lead core fiber up to reveal the lead core, cut the lead, then slide the your mono into the empty braid, like fishing a catheter......once the mono end hits the lead core carefully tie a couple overhand knots in the line, the now mono cored line will not slip and will slide easily through the line guides...... I use this set up on an old Garcia Mitchell 300, works great, just plan ahead and leave enough room on the spool for the lead core!
Now this is something Id never thought or read about doing before. Usually everythi g you see recommended is to put the at least 5 colors on your reel of lead core, but I lile the sound of this idea. Thanks!

I guess I would go leadcore and agree with 257. That said I like longer softer rods which I m not sure how easy they’d be to use in a canoe

my 2 leadcore rods are 8’6” Starfire and Diawa FT ML downrigger rods, paired with older Penn 209s. One has 1 and 3 colors and the other2 and 5. These rods are light enough to be fun with trout and salmon but stiff enough to set the hook and not be a noodle.

the FT rods are $14 or $16 at fishusa.
I like the idea of a softer rod to a point. Watching some youtube videos of guys using 9' rods with minimal flex actually looked like there was no fight bringing the fish in.

I did head about the trolling Fly Rod that LLBean has I do think I might pick one of those up if they have any in stock.

Ive read good things about the Penn 209s before I'll might puck one of those up as well. Thanks.
 

JDK

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The older 209 is a workhorse. Not sure about the newer ones. I’ll caution you, they are slow.
 

JDK

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I’ll shut up after this but I think Mowbizz is also spot on. Going to a local shop that has a good selection is always a good idea.

That said, it is my humble opinion that rods are pretty easy. There is a number of sub-$50 rods that will work great. Heck, I use the sub-$20 FT with no problems. Diawa, Shakespeare, Okuma, and Others I’m forgetting all make rods that work well

the problem I find is reels. It is harder. What I like others don’t and vice versa. Anyway good luck. It is always fun spending others money😎
 

257Roberts

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For winnipesaukee salmon and rainbows why overthink rod and reel?? The bigger the rod and heavier the reel just make the fish feel smaller.....I troll a fly rod 8’, 6wt, with either sinking line, or spooled with lead core, and the spinning rod, 61/2 foot ugly stick, with a traditional Mitchell 300, has worked for the last 20 years just fine. I tried a boat rod with a small level wind reel, I felt that it was just winching them in.....
Now let’s talk hardware, what are y’all dragging on that leader?? DB smelt for me....and it better have some orange on it!
 

Huntermc6

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I’ll shut up after this but I think Mowbizz is also spot on. Going to a local shop that has a good selection is always a good idea.

That said, it is my humble opinion that rods are pretty easy. There is a number of sub-$50 rods that will work great. Heck, I use the sub-$20 FT with no problems. Diawa, Shakespeare, Okuma, and Others I’m forgetting all make rods that work well

the problem I find is reels. It is harder. What I like others don’t and vice versa. Anyway good luck. It is always fun spending others money😎
There is a local shop in town that I am planni g to stop by today just to see what he has to say. His equipment selection is pretty small especially now that its harder to get outdoor gear but ultimately Is lile to purchase through him. I prefer to support local small buiness whenever possible.

For winnipesaukee salmon and rainbows why overthink rod and reel?? The bigger the rod and heavier the reel just make the fish feel smaller.....I troll a fly rod 8’, 6wt, with either sinking line, or spooled with lead core, and the spinning rod, 61/2 foot ugly stick, with a traditional Mitchell 300, has worked for the last 20 years just fine. I tried a boat rod with a small level wind reel, I felt that it was just winching them in.....
Now let’s talk hardware, what are y’all dragging on that leader?? DB smelt for me....and it better have some orange on it!
I need to stock up on some tackle as well. I have a bunch of Mooselook wobblers, kastmasters a few Rapalas some other spoons but no DB Smelt patterns. I need to look into getting some streamers too I dont have many smelt patters.
 

shawn_in_MA

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Like the others have said, Early season you can troll right at or near the surface. Something as simple as a 1/4oz tungsten bullet weight above your swivel then a 8ft floro leader and you could troll any number of spoons or pump a streamer. A fly rod with sinking line or a couple colors of leadcore can go a long way.
At Quabbin and some of the finger lakes/lake george we pull live shiners or smelt on a 7ft light action spinning rod with an open bail and a strike guard https://www.amazon.com/Bullet-Sport...ocphy=9032409&hvtargid=pla-944751909264&psc=1
When the fish grabs the shiner, the strike guard releases, let the fish run for 10-30 seconds, close the bail, let the line come tight and give her a light sweeping hookset and hang on! Make sure you have your drag set fairly light. I have caught salmon up to 6lbs and lakers up to 8lbs with this setup.
 

Huntermc6

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Like the others have said, Early season you can troll right at or near the surface. Something as simple as a 1/4oz tungsten bullet weight above your swivel then a 8ft floro leader and you could troll any number of spoons or pump a streamer. A fly rod with sinking line or a couple colors of leadcore can go a long way.
At Quabbin and some of the finger lakes/lake george we pull live shiners or smelt on a 7ft light action spinning rod with an open bail and a strike guard https://www.amazon.com/Bullet-Sport...ocphy=9032409&hvtargid=pla-944751909264&psc=1
When the fish grabs the shiner, the strike guard releases, let the fish run for 10-30 seconds, close the bail, let the line come tight and give her a light sweeping hookset and hang on! Make sure you have your drag set fairly light. I have caught salmon up to 6lbs and lakers up to 8lbs with this setup.
I've never even seen one of those. Definitely leaning towards a level wind reel and some type of lead core setup. I also think I might get a larger fly reel and use the Reddington Rod I have now so I can just switch the reels out depending on whether I'm trolling or fly fishing that day. Thanks for all the ideas and suggestions.
 




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