Call us toll-free at 1-800-661-6954

Welcome to The Fishin' Hole Canada's source for tackle and sport fishing equipment. Try us for all of your sportfishing needs...In store, on-line or toll free. You'll get hooked on the service!

Edge Walleye


It was a hot sunny day, Baptiste Lake was in flood and neither I, Melanie or Trevor had any experience fishing this lake during the open water season. This could be a challenge. If there was one thing going for us, it was the undeniable fact that when it comes to fishing hot weather walleye, two things jump out at you. First, they’re crazy aggressive throughout the warm summer months and secondly they love edges. Putting the two together should mean some walleye on the line and fish in the cooler. At least that’s what we were hoping for as we each had retention tags for two Baptiste walleye.

Perfect Anglers Fish

If there is one great equalizer come summer trolling, it’s a depth sounder, but not for the obvious reason of ‘finding fish’. I’m not too interested in fish blips on the screen, because many things can give a false reading. A suspended chunk of algae in the water could send off the fish alarm signal. What I’m really interested in is what the bottom is doing.

Perfect Anglers Fish

At Baptiste there are emergent weedbeds visible around much of the shoreline that continue underwater beyond the depth we can see. This is where the sounder comes in handy. It continued to show underwater weeds into the depths and on this day, the weeds stopped around the 12 foot mark. That was the bottom edge of the weedbeds and it was consistent throughout much of the lake. Then it was simply a matter of trolling in 12 to 14 feet of water with a bottom bouncer and spinner combo. This would theoretically put us somewhat close to that weed edge and in an area preferred by the lake’s walleye and pike. Several hours later on our way back to the boat launch we had run through four tubs of minnows and kept a couple fat walleye for the bbq back home. The edge effect worked for us this time.

Perfect Anglers Fish

Weeds aren’t the only edge that walleye relate to. On Calling Lake there’s an underwater contour that’s shaped like a boomerang and about the size of a hockey rink. The edge is set up by sharp differences in depth, with the shallow side being about 10 feet deep the other over 20. The sharp drop off combined with the sharp inside turn (the boomerang shape) creates a natural funnel for walleye and pike to move back and forth from shallow and deep. This is a spot that I troll through every summer on Calling and it has never disappointed. We’ve always caught fish there and it remains one of my best go to holes on the lake.

Perfect Anglers Fish

There is also a flat that’s probably 500 meters away that runs from 14 to 18 feet, but it’s a real mix of mud flat, then rock bottom, then mud flat, and rock bottom again. It’s easy to feel the differences in bottom composition, because of the sharp ticking being telegraphed up the rod when we run bottom bouncers over it. This spot has also been a walleye and pike factory and for some reason it typically produces the largest walleye day after day.

Now the really cool thing about the edge theory is that it continues to work in the winter. A productive drop off in summer will also be good come the hard water season. I took my friend Derek ice fishing to that mud/flat drop off I talked about and he caught a 7 lb walleye followed by a 9 pounder on the same day. Lucky guy! The big difference come ice fishing season is that the low light of early morning and late evening become the most effective time to fish. That is, most of the bite will happen early and late, whereas in summer the bite can and often does last all day.

Perfect Anglers Fish

The edge effect is universal to most every lake. At Pigeon Lake come late winter I make my annual pilgrimage to the well known drop off out from the Provincial Campground. It’s something I do pretty much every February or March. This too is a well defined edge and the fish have a pattern that’s as easy to follow as connecting the dots. During mid day, if there’s any bite happening, it’s normally toward the bottom edge of the drop, typically in 20 plus feet of water. As day shifts to evening, the walleye push up the slope and start to go on the feed. As the action heats up, the bite will become progressively shallower as they work their way up the slope. Nearing full night, much of the biting will be right at the top edge of the drop off until the fish have had their fill and the action dies off.

Perfect Anglers Fish

The best way to fish an edge in summer is to troll it. This covers water at a time when the fish are aggressive and active. It only makes sense to deliver a presentation that gets a hook in front of as many fish as possible. Because this is aggressive fishing, I put away the light tackle and run 10 pound Fireline with 10 pound mono as a leader. This system works well and gives me the ability to handle pretty much any fish that hits.

Perfect Anglers Fish

Come winter everything slows down. I have to rely on the fish coming to me as there are obviously no trolling options through the ice. I then downsize both line and lure. I run four pound mono so it’s really hard for the fish to see. I don’t use a leader and bury a frozen minnow into a wide gapped one eighth ounce jig. This way I have a very light presentation that is easy for the walleye to pick up and inhale. This method has caught me a ton of walleye through the ice and what may be most surprising is how I actually fish it. I drop the rig to the bottom, reel it up a couple inches and leave it alone. For real! The only time I react is when I see the tell tale bend in the rod indicating it’s time to pick it up and reel them in.

I sure love fishing, be it summer or winter. Finding and fishing the edges, be it contour edges, weed edges, or changes in bottom composition is an excellent way to find and catch more fish.

Perfect Anglers Fish

Previous Fishing Articles

(1) What to expect when fishing the West Coast

(2) Tips & Tricks for Fall Fly Fishing

(3) There’s No Place Like Home

(4) A Golden Opportunity

(5) The Observational Trout Fisherman

(6) Un-matching the Hatch

(7) Alberta Super Bugs

(8) Glass is Back

(9) The Bull Trout of the Athabasca

(10) Speed Kills

(11) Entering the Twilight Zone

(12) Old Man River

(13) The Pink Salmon of the Squamish River

(14) Small stream BT fishing

(15) Fly fishing beyond Trout: getting started

(16) In The Walleye Zone

(17) Zoo Trout

(18) Fly Selection for Beginners

(19) Fly Fisher's Christmas

(20) New Waters

(21) Big Bad Burbot

(22) Looking Back

(23) Out of Africa

(24) Finding Success on Crowded Trout Streams

(25) Mountain Peaks, Fast Streams, Fall Colours And Rocky Mountain Whitefish

(26) The Browns of Autumn

(27) Fly-Fishing Pike Through The Seasons

(28) Walleye Town

(29) River Fun - One Bite At A Time

(30) Fly Fishing Larger Rivers

(31) Going With The Flow

(32) Becoming A Better Fly Fisherman

(33) Swinging The Fences

(34) A View From The Aerie

(35) Dixieland Delight

(36) Atlantic Salmon - The Fish of 1000 Casts

(37) Do It Yourself Pink Salmon

(38) Montana's Cool Missouri

(39) Pretty Is As Pretty Does

(40) Toothy Critters

(41) Hard Water Lakers at Cold Lake

(42) Top Ten Flies

(43) Northern Exposure

(44) Home Water Lessons

(45) Chicken Of The Sea

(46) Sealing the Deal – How to Ensure You Land More Fish

(47) Deep In The Heart Of Texas

(48) Keep It Up!

(49) River Fishing for Fall Walleye

(50) After the Flood - A look at Southern Alberta rivers and streams one year after the flood

(51) Reindeer Lake - A Diversity of Opportunity

(52) Hawg Holes

(53) Saltwater Salmon

(54) Early Season Dry Fly Fishing

(55) Down a Lazy River –
A Fly-rodding Adventure on the Lower North Saskatchewan

(56) The Fly Fishing Season Ahead



(59) Bright Fish from the Land of Silver

(60) Canada's "Other" Salmon

(61) Fall Walleye

(62) Wet Flies

(63) Versatility the Key to Success

(64) Grayling of the Boreal

(65) Teaching Kids To Fly Fish

(66) Size Matters

(67) Fly Fishing Small Streams

(68) Chasing Winter Whites One Lake At A Time

(69) Manitoba's Fishing Jewel

(70) The Twelve Gifts Of Christmas

(71) The Point Of It All

(72) Fishing With Friends-Big Weather Seizing The Day

(73) Fall Fly Fishing

(74) Personal Pontoon Boats 101

(75) Big River, Big Fish

(76) Bottom Bonanza

(77) Fishing Small Flies

(78) So Many Choices, So Little Time

(79) Four Seasons of the Bow

(80) Favourite Lakes - Some Like it Hot


(82) Trout Hunting - New Zealand-style

(83) Don’t Leave Home Without Them –
10 Lures That Should Be In Everyone’s Tackle Box

(84) Edge Walleye


(86) Smallmouth Bass – An Oft Overlooked Challenge

(87) Four Corners – Four Waters

(88) Chasing Pothole Trout

(89) Springtime Stoneflies

(90) The Torrents of Spring

(91) Drift Boat Fly Fishing

(92) Bust Them With Bait

(93) Cure the Winter Blues with a Good Book

(94) Hot Strategies for the Cold Months

(95) Cutthroat: The Angler's Trout

(96) Terrestrials

(97) Fly In For Fishing Fun

(98) Rocky Mountain High

(99) Reading the clues

(100) Where the Trout Are
The art of locating feeding trout
in rivers and streams.

(101) K.I.S.S. and Tell Fly-fishin

(102) Fly Fishing 101

(103) To Catch a Big Halibut, or Ling Cod

(104) The Bountiful Bones of Ascension Bay

(105) Grayling in the Eye of the Beholder

(106) Fly Fishing for South Fork Clearwater Steelhead

(107) Manitoba's Red River - North America's Catfish Capital

(108) Eliminating the Spook Factor

(109) Trust Your Electronics

(110) The Most Important Hatch of the Year

(111) Early Season Nymph Fishing for Trout

(112) Finding Success for Ice Trout

(113) Walleye can be Humbling

(114) The Secret to Landing the Big One Finally Revealed

(115) Winter Flyfishing

(116) North Saskatchewan River - An Underutilized Gem

(117) Hot Fall Pike Action

(118) Tips and Tricks to Save the Summer Slow Down

(119) Reading Trout Stream Waters

(120) Frequently Asked Questions

(121) Streamer Fishing for Larger Trout

(122) The Lure of Big Walleye at Last Ice

(123) Deep Water Perch

(124) Post Spawn Brookies

(125) A Fisher's Life

(126) The River's Last Stand

(127) The Big Ones Come out at Night

(128) Coho on the Coast

(129) Chasing and Catching Halibut

(130) Summer in the Mountains

(131) Peak Walleye Season

(132) Slow and Steady Wins the Race

(133) Last Ice Rainbows

(134) The Burbot Event

(135) Tackle Matching

(136) Ice Fishing Strategy #2 - Going Light

(137) Ice Fishing Strategy #1 - Location

(138) The Lure of Brook Trout

(139) The Shallow Water Hunt is On

(140) Hot Backswimmer Action Happening Right Now

(141) Fishing Among Giants-Pursuing Lake Sturgeon on the Prairies

(142) Adventure at Davin Lake Lodge, Northern Saskatchewan

(143) The Vesatile Plug

(144) Bead Head Flies, Plugs and Shot and other Spring Favorites for Pothole Trout

(145) Planning your Upcoming Angling Adventures

(146) Good Fishing at Last Ice

(147) Maximize the Odds - Use Multiple Presentations

(148) Daily Fish Migrations

(149) Fish Migrations - Following the Spawn

(150) Lake Whitefish - An Ice Fishing All Star

(151) Pick Your Favorite Brook Trout Lake...and Go Fishing

(152) A Look Ahead to Great Trout Fishing

(153) Wrestling White Sturgeon on the Fraser

(154) The Fun in Ultra Light

(155) Flyfishing and Leadcore Lines

(156) Embrace the Spirit of Adventure

(157) Never Stop Learning

(158) Ice Fishing is Getting Hot

(159) Jigging through the Ice

(160) An Ice Fishing Unsung Hero – The Setline

(161) Rainbows on Ice

(162) The Season of Ice Begins

(163) Red Hot Fall Pike Action

(164) Hitting it Right with Water Boatman

(165) Facts On Cats

(166) West Coast Adventure

(167) June Walleye Frenzy

(168) Aerated Lakes are Big Trout Factories

(169) "First Fish of the Year - Pothole Rainbows and Browns"

(170) "Northern Exposure"

(171) Sometimes There is More to Fishing Than Catching Fish

(172) Early Season Pike On The Fly

(173) Man Overboard