Fishing Community Holes

Out-Fish Everyone on a Community Hole

Brad Hawthorne

Brad Hawthorne

September 10, 2019

In this video, guide Brad Hawthorne shares a few of his favorite strategies to out fish the crowd by putting more walleyes in the boat when you’re on crowded fishing spots.


Just yesterday I was fishing this is kind of community hole up here in Lake of the Woods. Guys were drifting, and waves were ripping through here at about three to three and a half feet and everyone was drifting spinners through this pod of walleyes. That pod of fish hasn’t moved in about a week and we’re looking at this going man I’m not gonna do the monkey-see monkey-do thing here. Let’s see if we can catch fish both directions.

So we put down our 72” Minnkota Ulterra and I hit it to one mile an hour North heading and the next thing you know are catching fish both ways. 

The other boats looked a little surprised because what they were doing was drifting down catching a few fish, driving back up disturbing the school of fish and then drifting back down but we kind of showed them the guys that had you know 60 or 70 inch shaft rod trolling motors they were actually able to run that same program keeping their bait in the water.

The monkey-see monkey-do thing sometimes that works and you will catch fish, but it doesn’t hurt to think outside of the box. Just because everyone else is doing it, doesn’t mean its the best way. 

Even if your boat doesn’t have a big trolling motor you could have back trolled. If you had a tiller boat you could have just put the butt end of the boat into the waves and just quite simply put a drift bag out the front on the downwind pass and you’d have been just fine.

A lot of times keeping your line in the water will always catch you more fish so in the scenario like that sometimes doing something a little bit different coming up with your own technique instead of seeing ten boats doing one thing and yeah they’re successful at it but then we took that spin made it our own and literally caught twice as many fish.

Mille Lacs in particular you often run into the same situation there. You’ll see a few boats out there in those community spots their community spots for one reasons because they hold fish. 

We come in everyone’s rigging fish right and it’s that’s a staple technique on Mille lacs. They are pulling minnows and leaches. Anyways so we come in and start rigging and the bite is slow. People are catching one here and there. We decide to switch it up and tie on some Rippin Raps in crayfish color or chrome blue and ripping these baits forcing these fish to bite. 

Once we made that switch the bite was on and while everyone else at the hole was rigging we made a switch and staring out fishing the whole group of boats. Doing your own thing especially when you are fishing community holes, can really make the difference and allow you to out fish the other boats.


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