What size ice rod and pound test line do you use to ice fish for walleyes?

I like using 2 setups for ice fishing walleye on most bodies of water. One for jigging action baits and one for jigging a jig.

For “action” baits (jigging spoons, gluiding baits or heavier rattle baits) I like a rod with a faster tip (so sensitive and gives you some flex for fighting fish with no stretch line) but with a strong backbone for efficiently working the bait and to securely set the hook into the boney roof of a walleyed mouth.

If in a shack I use a shorter rod so I can set the hook without banging into the roof. So look at a 24 to 28 inch model. When I go this short I like to use a Medium action rod. If outside the shack or if you have a taller shack, then go with a longer rod which will be better for taking control of the fish while fighting it. 36 or 40 inch rods should be Medium Heavy to get the right action.


For my jig rod – if I am actually jigging the jig I like a Medium action rod. Length is as long as I can comfortably fish based on whether or not I’m in a smaller shelter or not. My favorite would be a 32″ rod. If I am running the jig as a “dead rod” (one you just sit a foot or so off the bottom) then I like a lighter action rod so the softer tip allows the fish to pick up the bait without feeling the stiffness of the rod. Take a look at the Clam True Blue  26″ Light action rod/combo: http://stores.clamoutdoors.com/clam/rods-reels/dave-genz-true-blue-series-1806.html

For line I really like Berkley NanoFil 8 pound. It is no stretch so has get sensitivity but it is a “unifilament” line so very slick and not braided or fused. Since it so slick it has less ice buildup – and even when it does it clears off with a simple sweep of my fingers. I have fished a lot of the Clear Mist and the Low Vis Green. For the jig rod I go with a lighter 2 foot leader of 5 lb Trilene 100% Fluoroarbon Ice, for the rod I use with the action lures I like 8lb Trilene 100% Fluoroarbon.