Fall Walleye Patterns

You’ve gotta love the fall season: The air is crisp, the leaves are falling, football season starts, and there sure aren’t as many anglers out on the water.

Sounds like a great time to go fishing!

(Not that there are all that many times when it isn’t a great time to get out and go fishing!)

Anglers who enjoy fishing for Walleye may think that it is time to put away the rod and reel, as well as the boat, just because fall rolls around, but this doesn’t have to be the case.

Fall can be one of the most rewarding Walleye fishing times for anglers who understand the patterns that the fish follow, and use this knowledge to their advantage.

As summer ends the weather starts to cool, and so does the water. Knowing the patterns to follow will not guarantee a successful fishing trip, because no matter what season it is the Walleye are famous for being unpredictable.

It will increase the odds of success in your favor though, and contribute to more Walleye being caught.

When the water cools back down, the fish start to prepare for the colder weather.

They will go deeper in the lake or water, and can be found as far as fifty feet down, with an average of twenty five feet and lower. The fish also start to slow more, because of the cool temperatures, but they are preparing for one last feeding frenzy before fall turns into winter and the northern lakes freeze over.

The fall patterns may vary slightly between warmer lakes and those which freeze first, but the pattern is followed the same it is just on a different timeline, because of the difference in water temperatures.

The metabolism of the fish will start to slow, and they will not move as much or be as active at feeding.

As late fall hits, the Walleye will suddenly perk up some and become active again.

They may move closer to the surface, and feed aggressively.

This is their final feeding binge until winter is over, and the fish seem to understand that soon the lakes will ice over.

During this time the Walleye may be found in shallow water near the shoreline, because this is where the baitfish and other food sources will be the most abundant.

Once this activity is over, the fish go back into slow mode.

As the water gets colder and the fish move deeper and farther away from shore, their daily migration around the water body will slow.

They will still follow the pattern, it will just be at a deeper level and slower pace. During the late fall the Walleye can usually be located towards the center of the lake, or in deeper parts of the river where there is plenty of cover and oxygen.

Once the cold hits, the Walleye can seem to shut down quickly, leaving many anglers frustrated as they head home empty handed.

This does not have to be the case though, because learning the migration and travel patterns of the Walleye during the different stages of fall can help you catch more fish.

Look for deep dropoffs, and areas where the bottom dips or slopes down significantly, as well as deep underwater structure.

During the fall months this is normally where you will find the Walleye, and have better success at catching them.

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