Lake Winnipeg greenbacks require a lot bigger, more aggressive presentation than most waters in the US. Winnipeg doesn’t hold a lot of structure, so it seems that you just have to fish big and bold so these fish can find you, especially in this dark, stained water.
Large spoons like the Peg Flutter Spoon are always a great place to start and you can tone it down when the bite gets tough with a lure like the Super Leach Flutter or Ribbon Leach Flutter Spoon. This is also the place where rattle baits are really effective like the Booyah rattle baits, Live Targets, ripping raps, the rattling Shads from Northland, they’re all really effective with these bigger fish where you get a bit more of an aggressive bite. Keep in mind that you must pinch down the barbs on all your lures in Manitoba.
On your spoons, make sure to upsize the hook to match the profile of the lure itself. This will help you keep a big fish pinned a lot easier without barbs. You can also try putting a little bit of Pro-Cure scent on there for additional attractant with an off bite.
For your setup, 10 pound braid works well. You can use a fluorocarbon leader, but realistically with heavily stained water and this caliber of fish, it’s not necessary.
With these pinched down barbs, the most important thing to remember is to tighten up your drag a little bit and just winch the fish in. Don’t pump the rod, don’t play the fish. Just hold the rod in one spot and slowly crank that fish up. If you try to pump or work these fish a little bit with those barbless hooks, these big fish especially, they will easily fall out. Make some simple tackle adjustments and line adjustments when you’re up here compared to walleye fishing on a lot of other waters in the US and you’ll have a real chance at catching the fish of a lifetime.