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Trolling Motors: Position Yourself for Fishing Greatness

April 06, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 151

Trolling Motors

Your secret to fishing success

When I was a young, I once asked my grandfather what is the secret to success? Although I expected a long dissertation on the formula to achieving greatness, he quipped with a statement that summarized about 50 years of knowledge into one bite sized phrase: "be in the right place at the right time". What was I supposed to do with that, I asked myself?

Fishermen, who long for those productive days when they catch buckets full of trout or catfish, could use that advise and "be in the right place at the right time". But just as I was dumbfounded over how to put that knowledge into practical use, a fisherman might ask, "how do I accomplish that?"

It comes down to boat control. Often times the difference between a fisherman who consistently lands a bounty, and one who limps home with one fish and a headache, depends on how well they position the boat to maximize their chances of catching a fish. The more boat control you have, the more potential fish you can catch. The more responsive and nimble you are to the conditions of the lake or bay, the more fish you will reel in. The better you are able to, for example, identify heavy insect activity at the surface of the water - indicative of possible fish activity - and swiftly move into place, the better your chances of capitalizing on a possible feeding frenzy.

Your 100hp gasoline outboard motor, however, will not give you the needed boat control. Navigating through inlets, turns, pockets and weed edges, it is too loud, too lumbering, and demands too much continual presence at the tiller. Your solution is to use a trolling motor.

Trolling motors offer the agility to precisely position your boat over a school of fish, the quiet propulsion that will not scare off fish and smart integration that lets you focus more time fishing and less time worrying about where the boat is going. Trolling motors come in three types: bow mounted, transom mounted and engine mounted.


Due to varying wind and current conditions, boats do not always go in a straight line. Because of this, it is much easier to pull a boat from the bow then to push the stern. It is easier to pull the bow sideways than to move the transom sideways. A bow mounted trolling motor at the foredeck, increases boat control and positioning. This is critical when navigating through inlets, pockets, turns and deep weed edges. You must have boat control if you are going to consistently place the bait at the nose of a fish. In addition, a motor that turns precisely and keeps a steady speed makes it easier to keep pace with a moving school of fish. Trolling motors can keep your speed steady to 1/10 of 1mph. A steady speed is critical when trolling.

Many models come with an optional foot control. This allows you to turn, accelerate, and decelerate with your foot, thereby freeing both hands to work the rod and reel.

Bow mount trolling motor with foot control


You want a small electric trolling motor clamped on the transom, next to your larger outboard motor because, just like the bow mounted versions, these propel the boat quietly and will not scare off the fish. They keep you on a pinpoint trolling speed, which is important when attempting, say, fly fishing or keeping pace with a school of fish.

Imagine you are trying to fish in a 16-18 foot sailboat. With half of your energy and attention spent on keeping the boat headed into the wind and half spent trying to fish, you fatigue easier and accomplish neither task optimally. Transom mounted trolling motors afford steering control at the touch of a finger. Set your course and the motor self corrects, keeping you on a designated path, allowing you to move about the boat focused on the fishing. Again, a foot control or hand held remote autopilot gives you wireless control of the motor. Some models come with uniquely shaped propellers that will not get jammed in heavy weeds. This allows you to navigate in the thicket of weeds close to shore.

Transom mounted trolling motor


If you own a boat in the 14 to 26 foot range and can do without an additional motor on the deck, go with an engine mounted trolling motor. Mounted on the cavitation plate of an outboard or the stern drive lower unit, they are completely out of sight. What's more, when the boat is on plane, they elevate out of the water so they will not hinder the normal performance of your outboard and boat. If you own a runabout without room for a bow or transom mount motor, an engine mount electric motor will turn your runabout into a fishing boat. The wireless remote mounts on the helm or fits into your hands and controls forward and reverse.

Engine mounted trolling motor


As wind and current conditions alter your course, an autopilot keeps you on track and on your desired compass heading. Troll in place over schooling fish or next to the shoreline. Electronically anchor yourself into place or slip slowly downwind. If you discover a productive trolling path, an autopilot will retrace that path. An autopilot controls the boat, freeing you to concentrate on the fishing.

An ipilot takes the technology one step further. Using GPS technology, you can record a successful fishing path and retrace it later so you never forget or loose a successful fishing spot again. An ipilot will set precise cruise control for perfect bait presentation. As with the autopilot, the ipilot acts as an electronic anchor, correcting for wind and current conditions.

It is the compilation of perfect boat control, the perfect hook, bait, rod etc. that allows you to become a better fisherman. Trolling motors will take care of the boat control. So when someone asks, how do I catch a lot of fish, you can respond by saying, "be in the right place at the right time."

Source: EzineArticles
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Trolling Motors Bow Mounted Trolling Motor


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