Although it can be done year-round, jumbo perch seem to gain massive popularity late in the ice season. While perch can be found just about anywhere you look, the truly large ones that provide excellent fun and tableware are often elusive. Professional guide Brian “Bro” Brosdahl shares a few tips on locating and triggering jumbo perch using a handful of his favorite lures.
- Humminbird ICE HELIX 9 MSI+ GPS G4N MEGA 360 Bundle, Buy at Humminbird
- Humminbird ICE HELIX 9 MSI+ GPS G4N MEGA Live Bundle, Buy at Humminbird
- Humminbird LakeMaster Premium – Minnesota V1, Buy at Humminbird
Jumbo perch are notoriously known to roam shallow flats late in the ice season. This can make hunting them down a bit difficult. Brosdahl likes to use his mapping to target depressions spread out across 3- to 6-foot flats. Within the depressions, he uses MEGA 360 to look for any irregularities (deadheads, weed patches, etc.) that jumbo perch might be relating to. Brosdahl gets a kick from watching jumbos come in and eat on forward-facing sonar. And the system works excellent with a common 2D or flasher unit – sit and wait for your screen to light up!
Finesse is the name of the game when it comes to catching jumbo perch. Start with a larger presentation, such as a jigging spoon, and work your way down. Even if they don’t eat, bigger lures are like a dinner bell at calling fish in, a plus when fishing expansive flats. Brosdahl says that jumbo perch can be finicky, and sometimes a simple tungsten and plastic combination can be the ticket. Depending on weather conditions and fish behavior, keep both presentation options at the ready. Light line in the 1- to 3-pound range works best with both setups, as it reduces line visibility in clear water while delivering the best lure action.
FEATURED LURES (retail links)
- SPOON – Northland Bro Bug, 1/8-ounce, Buy at FishUSA
- JIG – Northland Mud Bug, Buy at FishUSA
- PLASTIC – Northland Impulse Mayfly, Buy at Northland Fishing Tackle
- LINE – Sunline FC Premium Ice Fluorocarbon, 1- to 3-pound test, Buy at FishUSA
- TACKLE BOX – Plano EDGE 3500, Buy at FishUSA
- SUNGLASSES – Costa Del Mar Tuna Alley, Buy at Tackle Warehouse