What is the Best Time to Fish for Walleye, Detailed Guide by Different Seasons

What is the Best Time to Fish for Walleye


Walleye is olive and golden color fish; usually found in deep water. In North America, Walleye is famous as a game fish. You have to be careful about the location and time when you are fishing.

Primarily, you may find them in the warmest segment in summer and at night. To catch Walleye, time is more important than the bait. Here, I will intimate you about what is the best time to fish for Walleye.

Walleye general activities

Generally, you can easily catch smaller Walleye in shallow water. But big Walleye like to stay in deep water in daylight. So, it is going to be a difficult task for you to catch big Walleye from shallow water.

But during sunset, big Walleye move into shallower water, where small fish cover themselves. The sharp eyes of Walleye help them to see the prey and take advantage of them. They are like night predators. They also use the same method in sunrise time.

When Walleye are active?

Around sunrise and sunset, Walleye easily attracted by bait. Other fishes cannot see baits at low light. So, Walleye easily bite the bait. Big Walleye are more active from dusk and dawn time being the hottest.

In the day, Walleye stay in the deep water, and at night they move into the shallow water where their prey rest.

Is it easy to catch Walleye at night?

Maximum time walleye do their feeding at night time. Though you can catch small Walleye all day. If you want to catch large Walleye, the night is the best time.

That is the time when they stay in shallow water for feeding. Walleyes eyes help them to see the bright bait. They can easily fall in the trap and bite the bait. So, we can say, the best time to catch Walleye is the sunset to sunrise.

Best times of day for Walleye: (by season)


1. Summer:

In summer, nighttime hours will be useful, but it is best during dusk and dawn. You can catch small walleyes in the day, but you have to go in a boat to deep water to catch big ones. Big Walleye stay in deep water far from shore in the day time.

At night they come near the shore to feed baitfish. As a result, it becomes much easier for you to fish the walleyes. The best time is a sunset to catch a walleye when they came to shallow water to prey.

2. Spring:

At spring, sunset and sunrise are best, but midday can be useful if you do fishing for Walleye in deep water. Walleye like to stay in the warm part. Because of winter, they lost some of their fat stores. So, they try to feed their body a lot as they like to warmest part of daylight.

They try to spend much time in sunlight. Not all walleyes are willing to bite during midday. They feed them heavily at night so that they might be taking rest.

3. Winter:

It is a bit tough to fish walleyes in winter. Nighttime and afternoon (early and late) are suitable for catching Walleye in winter. The best bites happen most in the late afternoon. In winter, Walleye are active in the late afternoon to feed themselves; that is the time to bait and catch them.

The best place for fishing walleye is the downside of damns. There you can easily find them because at that time they want to go to the upper-level water. You’ll have to apply some more techniques because the water in the lake or rivers gets frozen in winter.

4. Fall:

Dusk and dawn are best, but in fall, midday can be useful in deep water. Usually, at this time, Walleye eat aggressively to absorb more fat in themselves for winter. In this time, walleyes get slow for their feeding activity.

Therefore, you’ll have to make the processing slowdown too. I’ll prefer you to use smaller crankbaits and relaxed jigging actions to fish walleyes in the fall season. They spent their maximum time in warmer daylight. Then again, as always, they move in shallow.

Walleyes Movement on Daytime

In the daytime, walleyes move to deep water from shallow water using the guide of food and light conditions. In shallow water, they remain under 10 to 15 feet of water. But they can be found in 50 feet or more deepwater often.

It happens when they follow the schools of bait. There was some difference between Walleye shallow and Bass shallow. Walleye spends most of the time of day under deep water which is far from the shore to take rest in colder water.

They start moving towards the shallower water while the night comes near. The whole night the walleyes remain in the medium to shallow water until sunrise and go back to deeper water again after sunrise.

Most Active Season of Walleye

Night time is the prime feeding time of Walleye. That’s why; they remain whole active night through the all year long. At that time, they get much tactical advantage to find foods over the usual prey. Or they can see well in lower light even in no light. So, the ideal walleye time is from sunset to next sunrise.

In season count, the late summer can be the perfect walleye time for fishers. Moreover, night time is very crucial for the walleyes because they take food at that time, and they have to prepare themselves for cold seasons like late fall and winter. So, the summer is the best time for fishing big size walleyes.

Worst Time for Catching Walleye

The odd time for catching Walleye may vary from lake to lake. But mostly in common, they remain far from the shore in the late morning through 1:30 pm. At that time, if you use to catch fish on the bank without boats can’t catch Walleye.

To catch big size walleyes, a boat is a must. Walleyes used to hunt at night and fill their belly. For this reason, they don’t take food at day time and catching walleyes becomes harder.


So, it is clear that the perfect time for fishing large walleyes is dawn and dusk. If I mainly explain, the time is 30 minutes before from the sunset and 30 minutes later of sunrise. They take food at that time.

Even you can find them after one and half hour of dawn on a rainy day. Walleyes move to the deeper water in the day time to take rest in colder water. So, the night time is perfect for fishing the walleyes, and the late summer is the best season.