What Pound Line for Lake Trout?

What Pound Line for Lake Trout to use

Are you an avid angler who enjoys the thrill of fishing for lake trout? If so, you understand the importance of using the right pound line to maximize your chances of success. Selecting the appropriate pound line for lake trout can significantly impact your fishing experience, ensuring you have the strength and sensitivity required to reel in these magnificent fish. What pound line for lake trout is ideal? In this article, we will guide you through the process of choosing the ideal pound line for lake trout fishing.

Understanding the Importance of Pound Line for Lake Trout

Lake trout are renowned for their size and strength, making them a highly sought-after species among anglers. To increase your chances of successfully landing a lake trout, it is crucial to use the appropriate pound line. The pound line refers to the fishing line’s strength, measured in pounds, that you attach to your fishing rod. Choosing the right pound line ensures that it can withstand the fighting power of lake trout while maintaining the necessary sensitivity to detect subtle bites.

Factors to Consider When Choosing the Pound Line

What Pound Line for Lake Trout

Several factors should be considered when determining the pound line for lake trout fishing. Let’s explore these factors in detail:

1. Lake Trout Size

Lake trout can vary significantly in size depending on the region and the specific lake you’re fishing in. It’s crucial to have an understanding of the average size of lake trout in your target fishing location. Larger lake trout will require a heavier pound line to handle their strength, while smaller trout can be successfully landed with a lighter line.

2. Fishing Technique

The fishing technique you plan to employ also plays a role in determining the appropriate pound line. Different techniques, such as trolling, jigging, or casting, require different line strengths. For example, if you’re planning to troll for lake trout, a heavier pound line is generally recommended to handle the stress of long-distance trolling and potential encounters with larger fish.

3. Water Clarity

Water clarity can affect the visibility of your fishing line in the water. In clear water conditions, a lighter line may be preferred to reduce visibility and increase the chances of enticing cautious lake trout. In murky or stained waters, a heavier line may be necessary to provide better visibility and prevent breakage.

4. Fishing Location

The location where you plan to fish for lake trout is another critical factor to consider. Different regions may have different average sizes of lake trout, requiring adjustments in pound line selection. Additionally, if you’re fishing in rocky areas where the fish can easily wrap the line around underwater structures, a heavier line may be necessary to prevent breakage.

Recommended Pound Line for Different Fishing Situations

3.1. Fishing in Shallow Waters

When fishing for lake trout in shallow waters, such as near shorelines or in weed beds, a pound line in the range of 6 to 10 pounds is typically sufficient. This pound line strength provides enough resilience to handle the occasional larger lake trout while maintaining good sensitivity for detecting strikes in the shallower depths.

3.2. Fishing in Deep Waters

For fishing in deeper waters, where lake trout tend to inhabit during certain seasons, a stronger pound line is necessary. Opt for a pound line ranging from 10 to 20 pounds to handle the increased depth and potential resistance when battling larger lake trout. The added strength ensures you can reel in these powerful fish without risking a line break.

3.3. Ice Fishing for Lake Trout

Ice fishing for lake trout requires specialized equipment and pound line considerations. Due to the confined space and harsh conditions, it is advisable to use a pound line between 8 and 12 pounds. This range allows for optimal control and sensitivity while still providing sufficient strength to handle the sudden bursts of energy exhibited by lake trout under the ice.

Testing and Adjusting Your Pound Line Strength

Determining the ideal pound line strength can sometimes involve trial and error. It is recommended to test the pound line’s strength by applying gradual pressure until it reaches its breaking point. This test will give you an accurate measure of its maximum capacity. Adjusting the pound line strength based on this test will help you find the sweet spot between strength and sensitivity for optimal lake trout fishing.

Tips for Using Pound Line Effectively

Tips for Using Pound Line

To make the most of your pound line for lake trout fishing, consider the following tips:

  1. Ensure the pound line is properly spooled on your fishing reel, minimizing tangles and line twists.
  2. Regularly inspect the pound line for signs of wear or damage, replacing it if necessary.
  3. Use appropriate knots to secure the pound line to your terminal tackle, ensuring a strong and reliable connection.
  4. Consider using a fluorocarbon leader when fishing in clear water, as it provides added invisibility and abrasion resistance.
  5. Pay attention to the pound line’s visibility and adjust accordingly based on water clarity and conditions.

The Impact of Pound Line on Catch Rates

The pound line plays a significant role in your catch rates when targeting lake trout. A well-suited pound line allows for better control, increased sensitivity, and improved hook-setting capabilities. By using the right pound line, you enhance your chances of landing more lake trout and having a successful fishing experience.


Choosing the appropriate pound line for lake trout fishing is vital to optimize your angling adventures. By considering factors such as fishing location, water depth, and the size of lake trout, you can select a pound line that strikes the right balance between strength and sensitivity. Remember to test and adjust the pound line’s strength as needed to ensure optimal performance. With the right pound line, you can increase your chances of landing that trophy lake trout.