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What are Downriggers? More and more anglers are using downriggers, in both freshwater and saltwater. Salmon, trout, stripers and sharks are among the game fish being targeted.

Often these fish, and others, are down deep. Traditionally, cannonball sinkers, trolling planes, leadcore lines and keel sinkers have been used to troll offerings down where the fish are lurking.

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Often heavy line, stout rods and large reels are required. The advantage of the downrigger is that it enables the angler to regular fishing depth while allowing the fish to be fought using relatively light gear.

What is a Downrigger?

A downrigger is essentially a winch with a heavy (usually 6 to 10 pounds) weight attached to a cable. The cable allows the weight to be raised or lowered to the desired fishing depth.

The line holding the bait or lure is attached to the downrigger weight using a spring loaded release clip. When a fish hits, the line is released from the weight allowing the fish to be fought on unencumbered tackle.

Type of Downrigger to Use

Downriggers, like the rest of your tackle, should be tailored to the kind of fishing you expect to do. For offshore saltwater fishing you’ll want a heavy-duty model made exclusively of non-corrosive materials.

For most freshwater fishing from smaller craft, you’ll want to choose something lighter and more convenient.

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