Have you ever wanted to venture out onto Lake Michigan or other Big water in search of some great fishing?  It can be very intimidating and this can often keep people from trying something new.

The big water can be dangerous and should always be respected.  Once you are able to learn how to properly handle your boat on the big water then you are ready to outfit it with the necessary gear to put in some great fishing time.

Rigging a boat for bigger water can be very overwhelming, but if you start out simple and work your way up you will have a fishing machine in no time.  Start small and work your way up.  Most of the time, you will find out what works best for you and your boat by trial and error.

In my opinion, when it all boils down to the nuts and bolts of it the key item to have on your boat for this bigger water would be a quality set of rod-holders.  Depending on the fishing you do will determine what holders that you will end up going with.

Personally, for my fishing the tube-style holders fit the bill much better than any of the plastic style.  The reason being is that I am often fishing heavier baits, divers that pull hard, and planer boards that put extra stress on the plastic holders.

This year I have added a set of Big Jon Sports triple rod trees to my spread.  These  multi-set rod trees that allow me to run three separate rods from each tree. The rod holder trees allow me to get great separation of my lines and my boards so that I can keep good control of how they are running in all types of water conditions.


A huge bonus is that the bases are designed to mount into my existing track systems, thus allowing easy removal and interchange ability with other boats.  These units also index 90deg to allow for easy docking and loading of the boat without causing issues with the holders sticking out from the sides of the boat.

The new trees are in the testing stage on my boat, but I can already see that I will be able to run two planer boards off of the top holders and a diver rod off of the bottom holder.  This will free up the rear of the boat to allow me to run other divers as well as to keep lines clear of my downrigger lines.


You can pick up a set of these rod holder trees and most of your retailers and the price for a set is quite reasonable when you consider how many rods these units will hold and the convenience that they allow to clean up the spread of your trolling presentation.

In my opinion you can never have too many rod holders and soon I will be adding a second set of Big Jon holders to the center of my boat to accommodate more diver rods as well as back-up downrigger rod holders.   These tube style holders can take the abuse that big water fishing hands out.

I just returned from a trip out on Lake Erie for some monster walleye and we put these holders to the test.  We ran them in rough water, heavy pulling boards with lead core and heavy baits as well as fully loaded to put as much drag that we could on them.  They stood out like champs and performed as we had hoped.  The walleyes didn’t stand a chance!


Watch for future photos of how these all lay out in the scheme of things.

Cory Yarmuth
Legend Outdoors