Walleye are a great fighting species when they start to gain some weight. They can be caught on soft plastics, crank baits and for decent specimen fish live baits will be successful. However choosing the wrong line will at best put off the fish and at worst may lose you fish as line breaks. We take a look at some of the best walleye fishing line.
What Fishing Line Is Best For Walleye Fishing?
Walleye fishing line or leader should be monofilament or fluorocarbon of about 10lb test. Braid can be used, but mono or fluoro should be used as walleye have excellent eyesight and braid will be overly visible. Mono can be chosen if you want to keep the line off the bottom or are presenting floating lures.
Fishing for Walleye with Braid:
Braid is useful for Jigging, its lack of flexibility and stretch allows you to move the jig instantly and naturally and also allows you to feel bites much earlier and stronger. A quick flick should set hooks.
As braid is coloured and walleye have very good eye sight it is strongly advised to use 3-5ft of leader. this can be fluorocarbon or mono and be of a similar test weight to the braid. Fluoro will be less stretchy than mono but this can be down to preference.
We use Power Pro as our go to brand for most of our fishing, walleye and other species as it has been crazy reliable and is not over priced or gimmicky which can be a real risk in all things fishing related!
Fishing For Walleye with Monofilament
This give you some stretch, and is often use for beginners / day trips etc. if you are specimen hunting it allows you to scale up lures and gear a little. Also if you are fishing a Walleye Chop ( see later) then it will allow you to add some weight to the gear and give some flexibility to combat the wind and waves.
Monofilament floats so if you are surface fishing or slow trolling or slow retrieving then this will make sure your lure stays were you need it to be. Fluorocarbon sinks so it has a chance it will drag your surface lure down with it as well.
The advantage with monofilament is price. You can buy yards of these pretty cheaply. However, seeking out some level of quality is always advisable. Berkley are a well regarded, less stretchy ( in our experience) Monofilament producer. It is the most common walleye fishing line.
Fishing For Walleye With Fluorocarbon
It seems a little pricey to use fluorocarbon to fill a whole reel with this. It will, however, be very well suited to use as leader and this is how we use it. We fish with a 10lb braid with and 8lb leader for most methods of fishing.
The only use case, and we don’t really see the need is to use this if you are fishing deep waters and need to get your bait or lure down quickly to the bottom or near bottom. This may be needed on sunny days when the Walleye may retreat deeper in water to get away from the light.
Unless your really wanting to put it on the whole reel the suggestion below has 200 yards an will set you up for a great number of rigs for multiple species.
What is the Walleye?
The Walleye is a Northern American Predatory fish that is related to the European Zander. It edible fish and often caught for both recreation and consumption. They grow over a meter in length and weigh over 20lbs. Walleyes of this size are known to put up decent fights and test the strongest of fishing line.
How To Catch A Walleye
This needs its own post, and will get one in time. However a few quick tips to get you out on the water and ready to catch walleye are listed below.
- Windy and cloudy days are better for walleye, see below for where the term walleye chop comes from.
- Walleye prefer live bait, but crack baits and deep divers ( on sunny days) will work as well.
- Jigging, trolling and shore casting will catch walleye but the more water you can cover the more chance you have.
- Look for raised areas, inlets and river mouths and sand banks. These should hold walleye.
- Fish shallower in Spring and deeper in autumn and look for weeds and shade on sunny days.
What Is Walleye Chop?
Walleye Chop is used to describe the water and weather conditions that encourage walleye to bite. These conditions consist of winds of around 8 to 18 miles an hour, overcast skies and small waves with rough water. These combine to add oxygen to the water, stir up the bottom and reduce the light in the water.
All this makes it easier for walleye to see bait fish and puts them in to a feeding frenzy, or at least makes them more inclined to feed. They are often found closer to shore as bait fish move closer in rough conditions.
It is advised to add some weight to your gear if fishing a Walleye chop, heavier bottom weights or Jigs, to help with presentation of baits and lures in moving water.
How Big Do Walleye grow?
Well normally a quick google search would tell you this pretty quickly but there is a little drama and controversy surrounding the walleye record. The official ( and it changed a couple of times) record is from 1960 when Mabry Harper says he caught a 25-pound Walleye in Old Hickory Lake, Tennessee. However photo analysis 30 plus years later said there was no way this could have been 25lbs and 41 inches long.
So they reverted to a 1982 fish caught by Al Nelson’s which was a 22lb 11 once Walleye, for which there is considerably more evidence. However once again they ( the IGFA) changed their minds and gave the record back to Marby Harper.
Which even one turns out to be accurate is is safe to say any Walleye over 20lb is a monster of a fish. You can ready more about the story of the largest walleye here.
Other Tackle and Gear for Walleye
Depending what method of fishing you influence what fishing great you will use, however we have full articles on this on the site. ( we have linked to these at the bottom.
If you are in a rush we own a couple of Okuma Trolling reels, and for casting we prefer the Abu Garcia models due to both their great drag and reasonable price. You can check out both at the bottom or in the articles linked.
Other Species Fishing Line Test Weights
Below you will find a table of links and information that discusses which line is best for different species of fish.
The links will take you to an article on that fish that highlights line, tackle and method of fishing. As we finish writing them, it all takes time! we will fill in the links. No link, well its on a list to be written!
Of course some will be fine on anything around 10lb test line, but just to be sure we have written them separately. We have included 2 tables the most popular North American (including Canada), and UK Species for fresh water.
Fishing Line Test Weight for USA Freshwater Fish Species
Fishing Line Test Weight for UK Fish Species
Here are the most popular Fish in the UK and their test weight fishing lines