fishingoutcast header logo

How to Troll for Trout: Fishing Tips, Techniques, and Strategies

Table of Contents

It is important to use the right equipment when fishing for trout. How you fish for trout will depend on where they are located, whether or not they are in a stream or lake, and what kind of bait you are using.

How deep the fish are in water can also help determine your strategy. If you know all of these things ahead before going out fishing, then chances are you’ll have more luck catching them!


Trolling is used most often when fish are deeper in bodies of water like rivers or lakes. Anglers cover more ground on their boat with troll fishing. They can cast their line with a lure that looks like a fish that is natural to the area.

To troll effectively it’s best to be moving between 6 to 10 mph. The speed depends on the depth of the water – faster for shallow water, slower for deep.

While it’s important to be moving at a consistent pace, also make sure you are always changing direction so that your lures have a greater chance of being noticed by fish in different locations along your path.

Methods for How to Troll For Trout

Trolling is very simple – cast out your line and reel it back in with natural movements.

Make sure your fishing line isn’t too tight or too loose, rather keep it at an optimum level that will allow you to feel any bites, but not get snagged on rocks or branches under the surface of the water. Let out more line if need be.

What is Rainbow Trout?

They are a species of freshwater fish found in many river systems all over the world. They are prized for their beauty, taste, and fighting abilities, which is why they are considered popular game fish in most places.

Because rainbow trout are not native to the Great Lakes, you’ll want to use these fishing tips to help you catch these fish in the wild.

Trout Trolling Lures

Live bait will work well if you are fishing for rainbow trout in small streams or rivers, however it can be tough to keep alive while you are out on the water so make sure to use a basket or container that your line can easily reach into when you feel a bite.

If you aren’t concerned about the bait fish dying, then you can use a special kind of hook to catch them. Fish like this usually have barbs on the end so that they cannot be easily removed from the mouth of your catch.

It’s important not to use too big of a fish as bait because it is possible for trout and other fish to swallow it, which means they will likely not eat your lure when you cast it out.

When to Use Which Method

Rainbow trout that are found in lakes or large bodies of water will prefer trolling methods over live bait, however if you are fishing for trout in smaller streams and rivers they can be more attracted to live bait. So, use the method best suited for the size of your fish!

You can find more information on where rainbow trout are found here. Also, don’t forget to check out some of the other fishing tips and tricks that will help you catch more fish!

Where Can I Lake trout?

Lake trout are found in the Great Lakes, also known as ‘frankenfish’ because of their strange appearance.

In order for lake trout to survive, special regulations have been put in places on the acidity levels of these lakes so that they can thrive. This means that there will be less competition between other fish and the lake trout.

Lake trout will eat just about anything, so lures those mimic creatures found in their natural habitat work best. If you’re looking for the most effective ones, then look no further than these five fishing lures.

Trolling for Trout

When fishing for lake trout, it’s important to use a trolling rod that can handle heavier weight and do well with twitchy movements.

This will help attract the fish who have been known to be shy when it comes to accepting lures. Keep your line tight so they don’t feel as if they are being threatened.

Trolling Trout Fishing Tips

How Many Lines Should I Have Out for Trout?

You want to have as few as possible because it will minimize the number of snags or tangles that happen.

The best way to do this is to tie a swivel about every six feet so that the lures don’t tangle with one another when they get close together. Two fishing lines for trout per rod should be enough for small boats.

How Fast Should I Troll?

At a speed of between 2 mph and 5 mph is perfect.

The lure will not be moving at a very fast pace, but the weight will drag the line quickly along the bottom so that it comes in contact with plants or rocks from time to time – which is what you’re searching for!

How Much Weight Should I Use?

Using as little as possible will help to minimize any jerky movements that can scare away fish.

Instead, you want to use something heavy enough to pull the line smoothly across the bottom. It’s important that you try and keep your line as taught as possible because even a slight bend can make lures look strange to fish and they’ll turn away.

How Do I Know If I am trolling in the Right Spot?

Watch your sounder to see what depth your lures are coming up on and adjust as necessary. The goal is to find where fish like to hang out and stay there until you catch something, so keep this in mind as you’re looking for the best fishing spots.

Windy conditions might require more weight than usual because it could be harder for your line to stay taught. You can also try using a ball sinker or putty which will allow you to drop quickly down into water that has more weeds and less rocks.

How Far Apart Should My Lures Be?

About six feet is perfect! This will give them enough space so they don’t tangle with each other and allows you to cover a wider area of water. How many rods should I use?

Ideally, two per fisherman is the best number because it allows them to focus more on fishing instead of untangling lines or fixing stuck lures.

Marking Fish

You can mark fish by placing a marker in the water or by tying brightly colored fishing line at the end of your line.

This will make it easier to find where they were when you weren’t looking!

How Long Should I Troll For?

Trolling is most effective when done over long periods of time to get more trout – anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours depending on how big your target is and at what speed. Anything less than this will not give them enough time to accept the lure, in the deeper water.

Trolling for Trout Essential Gears

Planer Board

Planer boards is used to spread your line out over a wider area, which can increase your chances of getting bites. This works best when trolling at slow speeds because it gives the spinner or lure more time to get noticed.

Rod Tip

This useful device attaches to the end of your rod and will help you mark fish so that you know where they are hiding without having to rely on memory alone. How far deep should I troll for trout?

At a depth of around thirty feet is usually considered the best option because it will give them enough time to get comfortable with their surroundings before realizing that there is food nearby!

Trolling Rigs

This is the simplest way to troll for trout because it only requires two poles, three swivels and five hooks.

The first hook attaches to your leader line which is tied to one of the swivels; this goes on with the second hook attached at the end of that.

How Long Does Trolling Take?

Trolling can take anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours depending on how big your target is, what speed you are traveling at, and what type of terrain you are trying to cover. Anything less than this will not give you enough time to find fish in deeper water.

How Often Should I Reel In My Lure?

As little as possible! The more you reel or wind, the more noticeable it becomes. You want to keep your lures down at all times so that you can keep them in the right spot long enough for fish to notice.

Six feet is the perfect distance, which will give you enough room so they don’t tangle with each other and allows you to cover a wide area.

Suggested Trolling Speed

The recommended trolling speed for trout is 2.2 to 3.4 mph.

Moving fast through saggy areas might work in the short term but will definitely come back to haunt you later when you find out that your line has gotten tangled or even ripped off, so to catch fish you must use slower trolling speeds!

Always make sure that you keep one eye on the sonar while looking at your lines so that way if something does get stuck, you will be able to tell right away. Keep an extra leader handy for this reason – it takes too long to figure out which section of line is caught again and again.

Each species is different when it comes to troll speed, so make sure that you adjust your knots based on the fish you’re trying to catch.

Different Color of Trout

Trout have different colors when they are in different environments. In shallow water, their color can vary from a light blue to a dark gray depending on how deep it is and if there is any sunlight that provides a reflection off of its body.

In deeper water, trout will usually be silver, gold and brown trout with lighter coloring on the belly and have more shading around the jawline.

What to Check When Trolling?

Water Depth

Trolling is most effective when done over long periods of time, anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours depending on how big your target is and at what speed.

Anything less than this will not give them enough time to accept the lure, in the deeper water.

Water Temperature

In early season trout, you need to make sure that the water temperature is close enough to forty degrees Fahrenheit or higher because it affects how they react. Any lower and they won’t bite until a later date!

Water Column

The weeds present in the water column will affect how you troll for trout. The more that is present, the slower you need to go because it will affect your lures and get them caught.

In low weed areas, you should still try to keep down at all times while increasing your speed a little bit depending on the type of lure you are using.

Trolling Depth

Anything deeper than thirty feet is considered deep trolling because it will give you a wider range of trout to choose from.

If you are not sure which depth the fish are located in, just keep on tiling until your lures or divers hit bottom then slowly start increasing your speed until you find out what works best!

Final Thoughts on How to Troll for Trout

Trolling is a good way to cover more ground and catch trout that you might not find by staying in one spot for any length of time. It’s best to keep them active and moving around so that way they will expose themselves as soon as possible.

All of the information you gain from trolling can help you understand where they are hiding, what type of lures work best on those spots and also how deep they like their feeding lanes to be. So what are you waiting for? Grab your gear and go out there and troll your heart out!