Winter walleye anglers have witnessed major changes in tackle and tactics in the last two decades. Lindy’s widely traveled iceman Jon Thelen, who crisscrosses Lindy Land each winter filming “Fish Ed TV,” says the rise of lures that extend our underwater reach is one of the longest running yet still hottest trends around.

“Calling walleyes in from a distance allows you to expand your theatre of operations far beyond the confines of an eight-inch hole,” he explained. “This allows you to cover more water from a fixed position, and makes you a more efficient angler in the process.”

A variety of ice fishing lures possess potent powers of long-range attraction. Options include swimming and gliding jigs, spoons, hardbaits and more.

Lindy’s Rattl’n Flyer is a prime example in the spoon category,” said Thelen. “The Flyer’s wings enable it to swim outside the hole, which is certainly a big deal. But the high-pitched rattle and distinctive flash are also key factors. Together, they combine to call walleyes in to investigate.”

Rattling, swimming hardbaits like the Lindy Darter are becoming more popular each winter. “It’s easy to make a Darter swim two to three feet outside the hole,” Thelen noted. “But here, too, swimming ability is only part of the equation. Rattle and flash also add to the attraction.”

Jigging lures like Lindy’s proven Perch Talker and brand-new Wally Talker are giving walleye fans even more options for fine-tuning their fish-calling routines.

“Given the Perch Talker’s success, Lindy created the Wally Talker specifically for catching walleyes through the ice,” Thelen says.

“The high-pitched sounds from its brass discs and glass beads produce clicks and clacks different from the sounds of traditional rattle chambers,” he continues. “Plus, the color schemes were designed for walleyes, so the colorful flashes are just like a neon sign above the local diner at dinner time.”

Thelen recommends experimenting with different attractor lures, as well as the intensity of animation. “Many times, it’s best to work lures aggressively to call walleyes in, then tone things down when fish appear on sonar,” he adds.

More Fish-Catching Tips

Savvy anglers know that environmental conditions and changing food sources can have a major affect on game fish location and behavior.

This weekend on Lindy’s Fish Ed TV, Jon reveals how paying attention to water temperature and insect hatches can help you catch more walleyes and northern pike on lakes across the Midwest. Catch all the action this Saturday morning at 8:30 on Fox Sports North and Fox Sports Wisconsin.