Match The Board

Not all planer boards are created equal. Match the right board to your trolling application and you’ll catch more fish.

Some times when you are so close to the forest you can’t see the trees. Long story short, any of us at our jobs can become so comfortable with the everyday tasks that we take for granted that not everyone knows what we know, especially with the things we consider to be simple.

When a client eyed up a tackle filled compartment of my Ranger 621 he wanted to know why I needed all of those planerboards. I’m sure he thought that I probably only had them because I got a deal. Knowing this guy as well as I do he said it tongue and cheek because he knows I only use what I believe to be the best and don’t carry things I don’t use.

My response to him was simple and definitely caught him off guard. I asked him if he uses the same rod to fish for panfish that he does for bass, or if he only uses one size pound test of line. Touché!

When trolling with planerboards for any species from crappie to salmon, the board itself is generally the best way to tell that you have a strike, or as important, weeds or other small junk fish. Even the most experienced eye will benefit greatly from matching the proper size and style of planerboard to the trolling application.

Church Tackle offers a wide variety of boards to troll for nearly everything. A relatively new model TX-44 is big enough to use for musky or even with 400 feet of copper line when targeting salmon. A great feature on the original walleye board is a sliding ballast weight, allowing you to adjust to the weather, size of fish and torque of the lure being pulled.

I personally prefer the TX-22 when pulling spinners at slow speeds for the ultimate in sensitivity. In my opinion, this is just as important as having a premium grade jigging rod and braided line when jigging for walleyes.

Next time you hit the lake and troll, whether its saltwater fish or crappie’s, make sure all of your equipment is matched for the best success.

Be sure to check me out on the web at or on Facebook

Capt. Ross Robertson

North American Fisherman Top Stories