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This week's Feature Blog

A Deep Dive into Trolling Spoons

By: Mark Romanack

The author holds a lake trout caught on a Magnum Silver Streak Spoon while Gabe VanWormer of Fishing 411 TV shoots video for an episode of Fishing 411 TV.

​In the modern world of open water trolling, it seems that crankbaits have literally stolen the show. Every brand imaginable has a crankbait or 10 or 20 aimed at this lucrative tackle market.

​I find this ironic because in the world of Great Lakes trolling, it’s spoons that do the heavy lifting. Despite their effectiveness, there are only a handful of manufacturers who produce credible trolling spoons.

​ That’s hard to imagine when you consider that trolling spoons catch every single Great Lakes species and they get the job done spring, summer, fall and winter.​

​ The other irony is that outside of the Great Lakes, you hardly see anyone fishing with trolling style spoons. So it’s obvious that the phenomena of the trolling spoon is a Great Lakes thing. So be it, but I feel bad for those anglers who live outside the Great Lakes and have never had the opportunity to see the real power of trolling spoons.


​ In my mind, the virtues that go into a noteworthy trolling spoon are easy to identify. For one, a trolling spoon must have good action at a wide variety of trolling speeds. A spoon that has awesome action at fast speeds, but little action at slow speeds is only going to produce well when the water is warm and fish are active.

If we didn’t have premium trolling spoons, I shutter to think what sunrises and sunsets in the Great Lakes would look like.

​ To create a trolling spoon that has good action at both slow and fast trolling speeds requires starting with a fairly thin blade material. If a trolling spoon is too heavy, it will only have good action at faster speeds and be useless early and late in the year when it’s important to troll slowly. The down side to using thin trolling spoons is they are easily bent and destroyed in the process of fishing. I consider that issue the price of owning and using trolling spoons.

​Secondly, a truly remarkable trolling spoon must have an exceptional finish. I’m not talking just about paint colors or flash tape finishes, I talking about premium metal plating finishes that generate maximum flash. Genuine gold, silver and copper plating are critically important in the world of trolling spoons. Those brands that don’t recognize this small, but important detail will never produce a noteworthy spoon.

​ Premium plating finishes are expensive and this is the primary reason only the top spoon brands feature genuine gold and silver plating.

Most anglers think of trolling spoons as strictly trout and salmon lures. Actually trolling spoons are equally deadly on walleye, especially in the summer months when these fish often suspend in the water column and feed aggressively on pelagic forage species.

​ Thirdly, a spoon manufacturer has to offer a family of spoon sizes. Forage fish change in size throughout the season and in different bodies of water. This is why it’s critical to have not just one or two spoon sizes to pick from, but rather a whole family of spoon sizes that can be used to effectively match the hatch.

​ Lastly, it’s important for a spoon manufacturer to stay on top of the painting trends in the lure industry. This plays to recognizing creative color patterns, but it also suggests that spoon manufacturers must be fully aware of new paint products, hardware and especially hooks that maximize the effectiveness of trolling spoons.

​ All the virtues outlined here are found in Wolverine Tackle Silver Streak Spoons. Produced using blanks that are the right thickness to create great action at slow and fast trolling speeds, Streak spoons also feature the best metal plating money can buy. No one does a better job of painting spoons than Wolverine Tackle and these spoons are provided in several sizes and all come with premium hardware and hooks.

The Wolverine Tackle Silver Streak spoon has been a staple among Great Lakes trollers for more than 40 years.

​I’ve fished Silver Streak spoons my whole life and never once felt the need to own a bunch of other brands. That says something considering that I own every brand of crankbait under the sun! Nothing against the other brands of trolling spoons on the market, I just find Silver Streak spoons catch me all the fish I could want.


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