7 Most Important Rigs For Walleye You Need To Know (Walleye Rigging Guide)

Rigs are important ways of fishing because they correctly deliver your bait to the fish at the appropriate depth. The walleye setup is ideal for fishing in shallow water and catching walleyes with small equipment. Trolling, casting, and stationary fishing may all be accomplished with rigs. They’re also excellent for tactical fishing when you want to be more proactive with your catch. Rigs are great for capturing walleye and other sorts of fish. But what is the ideal setup for walleye fishing? Today, we’ll look at the top seven walleye rigs and the advantages and disadvantages of each. By the conclusion of this article, we’ll have discovered your sparkling new rig.

What are Walleye Rigs?

Walleye rigs are one of the most successful pieces of fishing equipment available. They may be used for trolling, casting, or stationary fishing and are critical for delivering your bait at the proper depth. They’re also great for finesse fishing since they can be used with live bait and fluorocarbon leads nearly invisible in the water, which is essential for catching finicky walleye.

But which rig should you use? This article talks about a detailed guide for a list of the top 7 walleye rigs to choose the best one for your requirements.

7 Types of Walleye Rigs for Fishing

Bottom bouncer rig

The most popular walleye setup and is ideal for trolling. It describes the shape of an L with a bullet weight in the center of one of its lengthy arms.

Setup Instructions:

  • Step 1: Tie your mainline to the notch at the corner of the “L” of the bottom bouncer using a Palomar or double uni knot.
  • Step 2: Hook your leader to the opposite arm of the bottom bouncer using the snap swivel attached to it.
  • Step 3: Tie a 3 to a 6-foot leader with a loop at the end to the snap swivel if you’re using a worm harness.
  • Step 4: Tie a 3–6-foot leader with a loop at the end to the snap swivel if you’re using crankbaits or other lures.

When to use: Use a bottom bouncer when you know the walleye are close to the bottom. It is most commonly used throughout the summer, although it may also be used in the spring and autumn and at any other time during the open water season.

Bottom bouncers are only a terrible idea if you know the walleye are suspended higher in the water column and will miss your bait presentation underneath them.

How to Use: To ensure constant bottom contact, the best way to use a bottom bouncer is to troll it lightly. That way, you can traverse a lot of ground searching for hungry walleye.

The nice aspect is that you may use either live bait or artificial lures with this approach. A bottom bouncer rig can be thrown from shore and gently recovered to ensure consistent bottom contact.

Lindy rig

A Lindy rig is a simpler form than the bottom bouncer rig. Instead of the L-shaped bottom bouncer line, it consists of a sliding weight or sinker and a leader connected to the mainline by a swivel.

Setup Instructions:

  • Step 1: Thread your mainline through the plastic bead and the sliding sinker. Then secure it to the barrel swivel with a Palomar or duplex uni knot.
  • Step 2: Attach a 2-foot leader to your hook, worm harness, or bait, then tie the other end to the swivel’s second eye.

When Should You Use It:

You should use a Lindy rig if you know the walleye will be towards the bottom. Because a Lindy rig lacks a line like a bottom bouncer, your bait will be presented incredibly close to the bottom unless you utilize a floating lure.

The most significant disadvantage is that the weight might quickly become entangled in the bottom structure. A Lindy rig is often used for fishing, although it may also be cast from the shoreline.

Drop shot rig

Although the drop-shot rig is commonly associated with bass fishing, it also works well for walleye.

It’s a simple way to attach a drop shot weight to your mainline. Then tie a single hook 1 to 3 feet above the weight. The hook is then baited with a range of various plastic lures.

Setup Instructions:

  • Step 1: Tying a Palomar knot using your mainline and a single octopus hook.
  • Step 2: Check that the tag ends are long enough to allow 2 to 4 feet of line to pass between the weights and the hooks.
  • Step 3: After tying the Palomar knot, thread the tag end through the eye of the hook a second time to make it stick out perpendicular to the line.
  • Step 4: Connect the tag end of the line to the drop shot weight.

When to Use: A drop shot rig is ideal for targeting walleye holding on the bottom, which can occur at any moment during the open water season.

However, if your fish finder shows that the walleye are suspended, you need to use a jig to capture them.

How to Apply: Upward fishing from a sailboat is the most popular method. An effective way to use it is a drop shot rig. Using your fish finder, locate walleye structures and drop your weight until it touches the bottom.

Then, without really lifting the weight from the bottom, jiggle the soft plastic lure with little motions of your rod tip.

Crawler harness

The crawler harness has two hooks to connect a nightcrawler on both ends. This increases its underwater length, making it more enticing to walleye.

It also features a brilliant spinner blade attached to the front that generates underwater vibrations and color flashes that entice walleye to investigate. It’s typical to bite once they get close enough to the worm to see it.

Setup Instructions:

While you can easily knot your own crawler rigs, we recommend purchasing them knotted to save time.

When Should You Use It:

Crawlers are the best live baits for walleye, but they only work in the summertime since they are only accessible as a natural food supply for walleye at this time of year. As a result, crawler harnesses should be utilized only from late spring to early fall.

How to Apply:

One of the most effective methods to cover a lot of ground with the crawler harness is to merge it with a bottom bouncer and slow trolling to present the worm gear to the bottom.

Slip bobber rig

The slip bobber rig is another popular choice among walleye anglers. It is made up of a swivel connected to a slip bobber on your mainline. The swivel is then attached to a leader, which has your hook attached at the end.

Setup Instructions:

  • Step 1: Thread your mainline with a rubber stop, a bead, and a slip bobber.
  • Step 2: Finally, attach the line to a barrel swivel and thread on a bobber-sized sliding sinker (with a Palomar or double uni knot).
  • Step 3: Finally, attach your hook to the leader by knotting a 2 to a 3-foot leader to the opposing eye of the swivel.

When To Use:

This way works well when you want to present your bait above the walleye. It’s a good choice when walleye are feeding close to shore in reasonably shallow water in the spring or fall, and you can toss it out to them.

How To Use:

It’s a significant benefit if you can use a fish finder from a boat to spot walleye and determine their holding depth.

Then position your rubber stop 1 to 3 feet above that depth to provide your bait. If you don’t get a bite after one or two minutes of lowering your bait to the fish, go on to the next spot. During the summer, this is an excellent approach for catching suspended walleye.

Ned rig

Another walleye configuration that is more frequently associated with bass fishing but may also perform well for walleye is the ned rig.

The Ned rig’s sturdy; the buoyant plastic tail is designed to tilt upwards during recovery. This gives it a different underwater motion, enticing fish to bite even when other lures have failed.

Setup Instructions:

  • Step 1: Attach your main line to a mushroom jig head.
  • Step 2: Attach a 2-inch soft plastic bait to the hook.

When To Use:

One of the best options for catching shallow water walleye from shore is the ned rig. It may also be used to fish around the edges of weed beds and on shallow mudflats.

How To Use:

Let cast it out and settle to the bottom before gently retrieving it with jerks or short jumps.

Because walleye like to eat higher in the water column, consider varying retrieve speed and depth.

3-way rig

The 3-way rig is a hybrid of the bottom bouncer and the lindy rig in many ways. It’s a three-way swivel connected to two leads, one with your hook and the other with a sinker.

It lets you take your bait high above the water’s surface, which is perfect because walleye are usually active a few feet above the top.

How to Setup:

  • Step 1: Link the mainline to a 3-way swivel in step one.
  • Step 2:Connect the two leads to the other two eyes of the swivel.
  • Step 3: Attach the sinker 2 to 4 feet to one.
  • Step 4: The second one is 2.5 to 7 feet long and is knotted to your hook.
  • Step 5: Because the sinker will only be used if it becomes entangled on the bottom, the leader linked to the weights should be of a lower lb test.

When To Use:

When trolling for walleye and noting that they are hovering many feet above the bottom, the 3-way rig is an excellent choice. You can control the depth of your bait by modifying the length of the line connected to the weight.

How To Use:

Trolling is the most effective way to employ a three-way setup. This is wonderful since it can be used with live bait or artificial lures, making it very versatile for trolling.

If you utilize floating lures, you may generate a bait appearance 4 feet over the bottom, which can be highly effective under certain situations.

The Best Walleye Rig Depending On Your Bait

Because they all serve distinct objectives and provide different advantages, all seven rigs we’ve examined are excellent for walleye fishing. Before deciding on the perfect rig for you, you must examine the area, your bait, and your unique fishing technique.

Unfortunately, not every type of bait can be used on every rig. Some setups perform significantly better with certain baits, while others outright refuse to operate with various kinds of bait. Let’s look at some of the most excellent setups for live baits.

Worms

Nightcrawlers are a popular sort of bait among walleye fisherman, and they’re pretty effective. The best way to use a nightcrawler on your rig is to attach it to a crawler harness, then attach it to the rig. The best rig for this would be a bottom bouncer or a Lindy rig, although crawler harnesses may be used on any rig. 

Minnows

Live minnows perform well with a bottom bouncer or a Lindy rig, but we like them with a slip bobber rig. Furthermore, this rig style allows you to alter the depth of the bait, allowing you to target the fish at the optimal height.

Leeches

Leeches are comparable to worms and may be attached to a crawler harness if desired. However, we found that a Lindy rig or a slip bobber rig works best with leeches.

In addition, we like to buy our crawler harnesses pre-made. You can’t do it using sponges, so you have to manufacture your own, which takes a lot of time and work.

What’s the Best Walleye Rig for Your Fishing Style?

Again, there are several factors to consider while selecting the most acceptable setup for your walleye fishing excursion. Walleyes may be caught in various ways, including trolling, shore fishing, and water fishing. So which rig should you go with?

Rigs Walleye For Trolling 

Bottom bouncers, three-way rigs, and Lindy rigs have proven to be the most effective trolling rigs for walleye. These three rigs are great for maintaining your bait at the bottom of the water while trolling big stretches of water in search of fish.

Which one you use is determined by how far up from the water’s surface the fish are holding? A Lindy rig is excellent for fish close to the floor, while a bottom bouncer maintains the bait one foot above the ground.

If you’ve discovered that the fish are holding even higher, a 3-way rig is ideal since it can keep the bait up to 3.5 feet off the floor. 

The most excellent part about trolling is that you can use different rigs simultaneously, so don’t be nervous if you don’t know where the walleye are. Set up all three rigs to increase your chances of attracting them.

Furthermore, after a period, you can observe which rig has received the most bites, allowing you to decide how high the fish are holding and deploy the appropriate rig based on this information.

Rigs Walleye For Shore Fishing

Almost all of the rigs on this list are suitable for shore fishing. We’ve had success with all of the following rigs when shore fishing: The Ned rig, slip bobber rig, 3-way rig, and Lindy rig are all types of rigs. These rigs (save the Ned rig) may be used to cast stationery lines from the beach.

The Ned rig is helpful for active fishing from the beach. This means you can put up many stationery lines from the shore and utilize the Ned rig for the one active. In this manner, you can increase your total catch count.

A bottom bouncer may also be utilized from the beach, and this would be an ideal opportunity to employ the crawler harness in conjunction with it.

Rigs Walleye For River Fishing

The 3-way, Lindy, and slip bobber rigs are the best rigs for river fishing. When fishing in the river, you’ll want to keep your bait as near to the bottom as possible, so these setups are ideal.

Conclusion

To choose the best walleye rigging for you, you must first grasp the concept of each one so that you can make a clear judgment on which one is ideal for you. We’ve got you by the balls with the material below, which includes a detailed walleye rigging tutorial to help you understand it better.

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