Slip bobbers are a highly effective tool for catching walleye. They are much different than a conventional red and white round bobber that is clipped onto the fishing line and restricts not only how deep your bait will sink, but also how much fishing line can be reeled in.
This Versatile Tactic Allows Anglers to Present Baits at Desired Depths
With slip bobbers, the main fishing line runs through the bobber, when reeling in or casting out. This feature allows for easy casting and retrieving, and makes it simple to adjust the depth of the hook below the bobber.
Setting up a Slip Bobber for Fishing is Very Simple
The first step is to thread a bobber stopper onto your main fishing line. Bobber stoppers are usually made of rubber or nylon string and are small enough that they can be reeled through the eyelets of a fishing rod and onto the spool on the reel, yet big enough to hold a bobber in place so it can suspend a small hook or jig at a specific depth.
Next thread a small bead onto the line, followed by the bobber. The purpose of the bead is to prevent the bobber from getting tangled on the bobber stopper.
Adding Your Fish Hook or Jig to a Slip Bobber
I personally like to use a small snap swivel and tie up small hooks and jigs to short snells with loop knots on top of which I attach to the swivel. In addition, a few inches above the swivel, I’ll add a bead and then a second bobber stopper.
The beauty of this system is the swivel/snells allow me to change hooks quickly and in the event I get snagged and the knot at the swivel gives way, the second bobber stopper prevents my slip bobber from sliding off the line and saves me from losing it.
Finally, add just enough split shot to the line above the hook, so only the top of the bobber sticks out of the water when suspending your offering.
With just the tip of the bobber sticking out of the water, fish will not feel any resistance when they inhale your hook and you’ll still be able to see the bobber go under.
Slip Bobbers Can be Fished From Shore or From a Boat
They can be used all season long and are ideal for suspending baits such as leeches or minnows near the bottom on a feeding flat, over the top of weed beds and rock humps or at any depth where walleye are suspended.
Although slip bobbers are a vertical approach, they can be used to cover more water than just the water underneath the bobber. If a fish isn’t caught in a few minutes, simply reel in a few feet of line and see what happens. Keep repeating this process until you catch a fish or need to cast the bobber back out.
And, with regards to catching fish, don’t reel in and set the hook only when the bobber is pulled under. If the bobber suddenly rises or fall over on its side, start reeling in as a fish likely has grabbed the offering and moved upward in the water column with it.
By Mike Hungle
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