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Find Wallhangers in November
 By Rick Olson
November is a special time of the year, if you are interested in finding large fish, especially those wallhanger walleyes that we seek during the summer months.  Probably more 10 lb. plus walleyes are caught during the month of November than any other month.  Those big walleyes are starting a feeding frenzy to fatten themselves up before winter arrives.
Just as during the spring and summer months, the weedbeds will still be a key location for the fish, as long as the weeds are still green.  Just as you worked the weedbeds in the summer months, seek out and concentrate on points, turns, pockets, and other changes in the weedline.
Rocks will also attract fish, especially rocky shorelines, as this is where the fall spawning bait fish will spawn.  If you find an area where rocks and weeds meet or are intermixed, work it over thoroughly.
During Nivember I fish primarily with artificial baits.  For panfish and bass, a or a Foxee jig in a 1/32 oz. to 1/16 oz. jig tipped with a crappie minnow has given me a number of fresh fish dinners.
I usually use a Foxee jig in the 1/16 oz. to 1/4 oz. jigs with the added plastic grub and a pike minnow as well as a variety of crankbaits for walleye.  Many walleyes are picked up while panfishing with the jigs and live bait combination.  A rip drop retrieve with tight vibrating crankbaits like the Rattling Rapala the lures of choice has been very effective.  I bang them over rocks and rip them through weeds to trigger fish.  The key, is to use the lightest live bait delivery system, including line and weight of the jig so that you can stay in touch with the bottom, but allow the bait to stay  in strike zones longer.
Backtrolling works best for vertical presentations to fish concentrated in distinct spots or at precise depths along distinct edges like drop-offs and weededges.  Backtrolling generally performs best with slow triggering presentations like live-bait rigs or vertical jig and minnow combinations, or with vertical jigging presentation like jigging spoons or bladebaits.  Most anglers consider backtrolling a deep-water technique, though in some cases, most notably river fishing itís possible to hover just a few feet above walleyes and fish vertically without spooking them.  Or backtroll, hover, or drift the boat through the shallows while casting to targets.
Anchoring is yet another method of presenting a bait to those November fish.  If the wind is really blowing, you might want to anchor above the active fish and let out enough anchor rope so you are in casting range of those fish.  The Down Deep Diving Rapala the lures of choice is easily fished over the fish that may range from 10 to 20 feet down and casting is a very productive way to present this type of lure.  Or you might want to let out enough anchor rope to sit right over the top of the school and vertically jig them.
This year don't be too quick to hang up that fishing rod.  Give fishing a few more shots before the water freezes up.  On second thought, do hang it up and leave all of those wallhangers for me!!
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