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How much to you count on your electronics on Lake Erie?

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  • 1 Post By Classic25

How much to you count on your electronics on Lake Erie?

Old 02-09-2019, 08:52 AM
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Default How much to you count on your electronics on Lake Erie?

I admit I am a creature of habit and tend to fish the areas that I have had success in. Some people call it old school because I don't use my electronics to locate fish. I have been catching fish when there is nothing showing on my FF so I have developed a mistrust of using my FF to find fish. I really don't like to troll so I want to learn how to better use my electronics to find fish, it's not fun drifting for hours and not catching anything.

I bought a Garmin 73SV last season and was hoping to use it to find fish electronically but I had times when it showed almost a constant line off of the bottom but I know that the line couldn't have been identifying fish. From salmon fishing in the other Great Lakes I know this is a temperature line/thermocline and not fish. I have seen blobs on the screen that I figured was bait fish but had no luck fishing the area. I got into an area last season off of American Eagle Shoal where I was catching fish on every cast yet there was only a sporadic mark on the FF screen. I have messed around with the gain/sensitivity settings but still didn't feel comfortable that the marks on the screen were actually identifying fish. Yes I know that marking fish doesn't mean they are going to bite but I would like more confidence that there are at least real fish under me.

Wondering who has been successful using their electronics to find fish and to educate me on what to look for that I'm not seeing?
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Old 02-09-2019, 10:34 AM
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For our usage, at least for sport fishing in the central basin, GPS serves as a tool to go to, or return to a specific spot. We have very little need for it as a charting tool because there really isn't and channels, rock piles, hazards and the like to deal with. Get some hot numbers for walleye or perch plug them in and go. I can couple my gps to the autopilot, so setting up a course through areas I want to fish, helps a good bit.
As far as the sounder goes, I use it to look at the depths of the marks (trolling) for how much line/cable to let out on the line counters and down riggers to get the baits in the right zone.
For perch, I'll cruise around until I find an area with a good bit of blobs on the bottom, then fish that spot.

As for nothing showing on your screen, remember the signal cone from the transducer is a very small cone. At AE Shoal, with depths less than 20', you're looking at an umbrella sized area of the bottom.

As for finding the fish, neither will do that for you.


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Old 02-10-2019, 10:18 PM
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Look up teachin fishin online. Facebook if you have it. It costs a few bucks but great information on electronics. Not affiliated, they just have a nice program.
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Old 02-13-2019, 12:47 PM
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If I don't mark fish, I don't put the lines in. I see 80% of all the fish I catch on sonar first, except on a drift 90 degrees to the wind.

On Lake Erie this year we could run any direction, blindfolded for 5 minutes, dip a shoelace and catch our limit of walleye.
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Old 02-14-2019, 11:41 AM
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Radar when the weather gets foggy or storms coming, Bottom Machine to see if the fish are deep or suspended and my chart plotter to stay on course when running across the lake or circling a school of fish when trolling. I guess you could say I rely on them. Ive also caught lots of fish before all of this technology.
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