Best Fishing Line for Walleye
Choosing the best fishing line for walleye will depend what type of setup you are using and how, where and why you are targeting them.
The most popular methods for catching walleye are:
What is suitable for one may be a disaster for the other!
Matching your line to your technique is one sure fire way to improve your hook up rate.
For example mono has too much stretch in it for deep jigging work and lead core lines are really only suitable for trolling.
Some anglers will swear by braid for almost everything and others are life long fans of monofilament purely because it was the first line they ever learned how to use as a kid.
Whilst you these fishermen may never change from their favorite walleye fishing line it does not mean that you don’t have to.
What Pound Test Line for Walleye ?
The best pound test line for walleye will vary be technique but for braid use 8 to 10 lbs , monofilament use 6 to 8 lbs , fluorocarbon leader use 10 to 12 lbs and lead core line use 12 to 18 lbs.
The above are rough estimates. Given that braid is thinner than the others you can go slightly heavier in rating that say mono.
Lead core lines don’t really vary that much in terms of thickness unless you start hitting 30 lbs rating or higher. It is the external sheath around the lead core inner that is made stronger and not the inner core.
Lead core line has fallen out of favor in recent times with most anglers preferring to use a down-rigger setup.
Best Fishing Line for Walleye
P-Line TCB makes a great main line braid for a lot of walleye fishing applications.
It’s one of the best walleye lines for jigging. Whether that’s deep vertical jigging or throwing lighter walleye jigs in and around structures or vegetation.
A special Teflon coating allows it to slip through you line guides with minimal friction. It’s extremely thin for it’s line rating so you can really load up a spool with quite a bit.
Pair it with a high quality fluorocarbon leader such as Seaguar Blue Label and you have yourself an amazingly super slick, low stretch walleye fishing line setup.
Power Pro braid is one of the most popular braids ever made. It’s relatively cheap, casts quite well and low stretch.
Personally I use Power Pro on my multipurpose spinning setups. Lower chances of wind knots and it cuts through weed like crazy.
Berkley Trilene XL is the best monofilament line for walleye. It casts extremely well on light gear and has a little less memory than other mono brands.
It is makes for a great trolling line as it is pretty durable, thin and does not have a massive amount of stretch.
It also knots well which is super important for a trolling line as they need to be able to handle lots of different trolling accessories like swivels, planer boards and tough enough to handle rubbing off the bottom, so abrasion resistance is super important.
Suffix Elite is great for when you want those softer hook-ups(this is where mono excels) especially if you are throwing really light walleye jigs or using small crankbaits.
If jigging in less than 20 feet I’ll choose Suffix Elite every time vs braid.
At that depth the stretch is not really a big issue. However, it is a lot less visible than braid and much better at casting smaller jigs especially on a light spinning tackle setup.
As a fluorocarbon leader Seaguar Blue Label really is hard to best. If you are fishing in an area that has a lot of northern pike then a good quality, abrasion resistant fluoro leader is a must.
The Blue Label Fluorocarbon also has incredible knot strength. It’s a little bit stiffer than if you were using mono so if you are throwing really light jigs or bait rigs then I’d ditch the fluoro in favor of mono.
Although they may be falling out of favor there are still some die hard lead core trolling fans in the world of walleye fishing.
Suffix Performace Lead Core is the perfect match for many trolling scenario’s where you don’t want to run a downrigger.
Performance is a very thin lead core line so you really do need to avoid line twist on your walleye tackle as much as possible, always run high quality swivels!
Line twist will ruin lead core line and after one season you will end up with the lead beginning to poke through the outer sheath.
The only way to avoid this is to set your trolling rig up correctly, many anglers will blame the line when in reality it is a setup issue.
Walleye Fishing Line
Choosing the best walleye fishing line means matching your line to the type of setup you are using.
Understanding the characteristics of the types of fishing line for walleye that you are using will help you greatly in deciding on what kind of line is best.
Braid when compared to mono is very low stretch. It is also toughly half the diameter of mono for the equivalent breaking strain.
Braid is most useful when using single hooks, adding life into your lure by twitching the rod tip or if you working your walleye lures in and around heavy weed cover.
Single hooks usually require a firm hook-set to get them to hook properly. So if you are using jigs or a similar type of lure then braid is the best line to use.
But it should nearly always be used with a leader of either fluorocarbon or monofilament. Braid is far too visible even in low light scenario’s.
My personal preference when jigging is to use a fluorocarbon leader as it has much less stretch than mono.
Mono as we have discussed has quite a bit of natural stretch. As a general rule if you are using large lures that have treble hooks on them it can be best to use mono.
That extra bit if stretch in the line also means you need to give your strike a little more power so as to set the hooks.
Mono also floats better so if you are working the topwater then it is a better option
As a fishing line for walleye I have yet to see anyone using fluorocarbon as their main line.
Where it really excels though is as a leader. It’s pretty translucent and has better abrasion resistance than mono.
It also sinks better than mono, so if you are trying to get your lures down deep and using braid as your main line then fluorocarbon is the best leader to use.