I commented: “Is that how you won the last walleye derby? Wouldn’t be surprised.” To which he replied, “It was. Video coming!” 👀
Then I came across this AIM press release (posted this morning) going over their winning details, and no joke they won it fishing docks…for walleyes…on purpose. 😳 Few details from AIM’s press release below, but you’ll definitely wanna read ‘er all:
> Tom Huynh: “Actually, a big majority we caught under and around docks.
> “We had those storms and tornadoes during pre-fishing and it ended up being a blessing. I wouldn’t have done this had it not been for the strong, persistent winds out of the west.
> “So that [pre-fishing] day I idled around the lake and the shorelines, and around a breakline. I came up on this line where there were good-looking fishable weeds. We fished around there, and I broke off on a northern…was [re-tying] when I realized I drifted into 4-5′. I got up on my trolling motor to get deeper and made a pan over with my Garmin LiveScope, and in the water there’s a big mark. In shallow those marks are exaggerated. I thought okay, that has to be a muskie.”
But it was a 28-29″ walleye…
> “With my LiveScope I could see clouds of baitfish. Everyone else talked about how many perch they caught here. I never caught one because the bait I happened to be around were minnows.”
He went back the next day when the water had cleared a bit (was murky from the storms/wind) and those minnows were still there.
> “With my own eyes I could see the minnows. I could have stocked a dozen bait shops with them. There’s no grass around the docks so these fish were lurking in the grass nearby until they were ready to feed, and a lot would sit under the docks and pontoons to ambush them. I spent a good 75% of that [pre-fishing] day not even casting. I went looking…under the docks and the bait seemed to be hanging under [them].
> “..threw paddletail swimbaits between the pontoons and the docks. [The swimbait] was 4-5x bigger than the minnows. I would get random small bass, but I would see bigger fish come out and sometimes follow it. I about fell out of the boat.
> “They never bit that swimbait so I would throw a minnow and a jig right next to the dock and that walleye would come out and eat it.”
> That’s a hint at what they employed on day 1: Set ’em up with a plastic tease, then return with a tasty live bait and watch ’em go for it.
> “It wasn’t every dock. Most of the time we didn’t have to use that trick. We could see the walleye sitting like 2-3′ from the dock posts. They were hungry [on day 1]. That’s why they went up shallow.
On day 2, the wind had shifted and laid down calm, so they had to go fish new schtuff and in a more traditional walleye-like manner = caught ’em pitching jigs and minnows to weedlines in 10-12′. But you still gotta pay attention to this important snippet:
> “We’d use our electronics to locate schools and we’d fish into the schools. We found you can throw live bait all day long to a school and they won’t eat, or don’t even have a reaction. We’d just move on to find active fish. Not spending too much time on one pod of fish, being efficient.”
There’s a lot more info in AIM’s full post here.
If you’ve been reading Target Walleye for awhile, you know I talk about “bass fishing for walleyes” all the time. Fishing shallow + aggressive with off-the-wall stuffs. But THIS takes it to a whole new level…again.
BIG congrats fellas! No doubt you’re changing the walleye game, and I’m having an absolute blast watching it from a distance. Would rather watch it from a boat tho….
Btw after reading this, do you think any of the other NWT pros will be snooping around docks at the Prairie du Chien, WI event that kicks off tomorrow?