The Bait-Walker Sinker was created to walk rocky bottom structure without snagging up. It was designed in 1975 by Dan Gapen, Sr. to work both live bait and lures, such as crankbaits, spoons, trolling flies and stick plugs. Research proved the Bait-Walker to be 85 to 90% snag-free on natural rock bottom in both lake and river. The Bait-Walker walks across bottom with little resistance, because less than 5% of the sinker touches bottom. Built with a patented flat back, the angler feels less than 50% of the sinker's actual weight. Example: a 2 oz. Bait-Walker pulls but 1 oz. or less, at rod tip. When engaged in a rock crevice, the user only has to back over the snag, pull hard, and feel the sinker pivot back on itself and out of the snag. When touching rough rock bottom, because the point of pull is up and above the sinker weight, this rig will help lift up off the bottom then settle back to bottom inches later.
Besides all these features, the Bait-Walker also acts as a keel sinker, providing line twist while trolling. Nothing will get live bait or your favorite stick plug down where fish hold--better than a Bait-Walker sinker. Rig up a Gapen Bait-Walker and bait walk your offerings across structure to catch more fish. Walleye rigs, lake trout trolling, catfish weight and salmon rigging couldn't be easier than with the Gapen Bait-Walker. Bottom-bounce your way to hungry bottom-hugging fish with a Gapen Bait-Walker today.
Which Bait-Walker for What Bait? Live Bait
No matter which live bait you use, it is suggested that smaller sizes such as 1/4 oz., 3/8 oz., 5/8 oz., and 1 oz. be used. If you work heavy current or very deep water (50 feet or more) the 1 1/2 oz. and 2 oz. models maybe be required on live bait.
Plugs never use Bait-Walkers less than 1 oz. on your favorite minnow-style plug or crank bait. When plugs are trolled or retrieved below 20 feet of depth, water pressure tends to force them upwards. Always use plugs with shallow lips when working deep water. Bait-Walkers which work best on plugs are 1 1/2 oz., 2 oz. and 3 1/2 oz.
Any size Bait-Walker Sinker will work on a spoon, much depends on how deep you wish to troll or retrieve. However, if you are working species such as stripers or lake trout in water deeper than 50 feet, it is suggested that the 6 oz. and 10 oz. model be used.
When trolling a Bait-Walker, the user should use a lighter dropback line than rod line. Example: If you troll live bait with a 10-pound reel between swivel on the Bait-Walker and the hooked live bait. Though this snag-free sinker tends to walk without hanging up, hooks tend to snag in rocks and timber. If something is to give, let it have the six-pound line, if that works?
When trolling a Bait-Walker, the user should use a lighter dropback line than rod line. Example: If you troll live bait with a 10-pound reel line attached to the sinker...use a 6 lb. or 8 lb. line between swivel on the Bait-Walker and the hooked live bait. Though this snag-free sinker tends to walk without hanging up, hooks tend to snag in rocks and timber. If something is to give, let it be the 6 lb. line behind the Bait-Walker.
"How-To" Use the Bait-Walker as a Slip Sinker
By adding a swivel to the front eye of the walker you have created a near-perfect slip sinker rig. Unlike the usual lead-style slip sinkers which create drag when line is pulled through them, eyelets of the stainless swivels allow unrestricted movement. This application of the Bait-Walker might best be described as a "Trolley-Tram" effect. Suspended like a Trolley-Tram on a cable, this new application of the Bait-Walker Sinker enables the fisherman to double the uses this "NEW" fishing rig has to offer for the live bait man.