Walleye Fishing - Are Red Tails An Over Rated Fall Bait?...Yes!
I'm putting my head on the chopping block - that is if you're into fishing the almighty Redtail minnow. It is amazing to me how many anglers rely and depend on Redtails as a staple bait to catch walleye summer or fall. Even many fishing guides I know are addicted to the redtail curse.
The curse is the $12 per dozen minnows. I did a little math the other day and if my boat used just one redtail per walleye all summer and fall my bait bill would easily run into the $6,000 range--ouch!!. That doesn't even include the minnows that die, fall prey to other fish, or missed hook sets by numerous clients. So what do I do? I utilize the almighty night crawler.
I depend on thousands of devoted night crawlers to catch walleye from May through October with water temps as low as 39 degrees. They are cheap, durable and catch everything--they are my best employees. Crawlers work in 3 ft of water or 60ft of water, clear or murky, sunny or cloudy --and they are also much easier to transport from lake to lake - especially now that live wells must be empty when on the road. Who wants to dump $30 worth of minnows in the grass every day - not me!
The crawlers simply go back into the fridge after each day--not wasted. If I do decide to bring a few minnows for a boat ride I will use the Rainbow Chub or a good mix of river run bait. They are just as lively (and almost as big) as the redtails - and 1/2 the price. It should be a simple decision to rely on crawlers more than redtails, but boy do I get into some heated conversations with the redtail society (anglers that swear by them) about fishing with crawlers vs. redtails. Its almost like Green Bay vs. Minnesota.
I don't think I will ever win the 20 yr old sales pitch about redtails and walleyes.
When your buddies are not looking, try a crawler, you will be amazed, besides - whats in your wallet?
See ya and good luck,