By Sean Wit

As every year in late June me and three of my friends, including Frans van der Putte, travel up north to the fishinggrounds of Sweden to fish for Northern pike using planerboards. And not just any pike, but BIG pike specific!

  We do not come here for the pikes alone, the scenery is simply breathtaking!

Using trolling planerboards is a very effective fishing technique. In this time of the year the pike are scattered in the top water layer and hard to find. Using quality gear (custom mast and big sideplaners) it is possible to fish with 4 rods each scattered over 300 feet of water and experiment with all kinds of lures and swimbaits. As always swimbaits are favorited for a simple reason; in these clear water conditions the pike will be able to take a real good look at the bait, so using a swimbait with a highly natural action and appearance is often the key to success.

In this time of the year the pike are scattered in the top water layer and hard to find.

Last year we made extensive use of the Esox V2 pike swimbait and with great success. In nine days of fishing we landed 310 Northern Pikes of which 31 measuring more than a meter (40”). Of those 31 meter-pikes, 10(!) where caught on Esox. Needless to say that our faith in this big swimbait has only strengthened since.

During the entire week we were able to seduce good pikes on esox but what stood out was that they all where bigger than 90 cm! The average length of the pikes caught in Sweden is good to start with anyways, but for esox this average only gets higher!

Esox V2 has a deadly action when promptly stopped

Most strikes occured while making turns and or adjusting the speed of the boat. Esox V2 has a deadly action when promptly stopped; when stopped, the head will turn 90 degrees and the body will sink down. When speed picks up again it imitates a fleeding pike in distress. Besides that, the profile of esox is much bigger compared to other swimbaits available wich makes it more likely to attract pikes in deeper water.

  Many readings between 0 en 5 meter.


Sweden is a beautiful country with overwhelming nature, charming and friendly people and great fishing.

Don’t ever forget the vastness of these waters, always make sure you have a full battery in your mobile phone, enough food and water on board and ofcourse proper lifejackets.


A GPS system is a must have! One year I did without, but that is something I will never ever do again! You really do not want to find yourself lost in thick fog; you simply will not find your way home again! Besides that, a GPS system is a great tool in marking and refinding hotspots.

During the fishing sessions we were very carefull of where and how to fish esox. The water conditions are very capricious; you can find yourself in water that is 50 meters deep and then 200 meter further only 50 centimeters deep! Esox is not really the cheapest lure available so we were sure to use it carefully! Stopping the boat is a very effective fishing move but only a wise decision when teh water is at least 4 meters deep. 99% of the hook-ups means game-over. Because of all the rigged sideplaners, a quick stop and rescue is not really an option.

A GPS system is a must have!

Example; one steering error on my side cost me 3x BBZ and 3x ti7 leader! A costly mistake...
Fortunately my esox was spared and I was able to rescue it.

We are allready looking forward to our Sweden trip next year. And esox? This lure will be one of the first things we pack!



Planer Board Basics

Over the last 5 years Planer Boards have emerged as one of the foremost components for catching fish in vast waters like in Sweden. Trolling larger spreads becomes very workable with a set of boards. The trolling rigs are set out on each side with from 2 to 6 rods on each side.

The concept of using planer boards is two fold:
1) Get more trolling rigs in the water without tangling
2) Moving the trolling lures away from the boat motors or boat noise.

When used properly, they have many advantages. Most anglers perceive them to be cumbersome and only workable on larger boats. This theory is no longer true. Things have changed with better designs, new materials and new ideas, all have made it easy for the small boat fisherman to run planer boards.