Minnesota Fish Tales Fishing Report
The Most In-Depth Statewide Fishing Report in Minnesota!
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- Ben's Bait & Tackle
Bennet or Craig Stich, Junction of Hwy 78 and 210 (218-864-5596)
Star, Dead and Stalker best for sunnies. Crappies best on West Battle, Rush and Star. Be careful along the shorelines and access points. Please call us for daily updates.
- Veire's Mini-Mart - Visit our Facebook Page
Dave, 117 E Benton St, corner of Hwy 75 and 14 (507-368-4204)
Call Dave at Veire's for a current fishing report anytime!
- Timberline Sport & Tackle
Carl Adams, Junction of Hwy 71 and Blackduck Lake Rd. (218-835-4636)
Perch best on Round Lake in 5-10 feet of water. Gull Lake best for bluegills and crappies in 20 feet of water. Call us for an up-to-the-minute report!
- Leisure Outdoor Adventures - www.leisureoutdooradventures.com
Toby Kvalevog and Jeff Andersen (1-855-LOA-HOOK or 1-855-562-4665)
Thing have changed since the Opener and Mother Nature has had a lot to do with that. What we found this weekend was water temps had dropped in throughout the lake anywhere from 3-6 degrees due to the cold weather and rain we had last week. That played a role in the fishing this past weekend, but the name of the game was to adjust your game plan and get away from what may be the “traditional” early season walleye patterns.
Walleye fishing was up and down at times during the weekend, but if you were willing to change up your routine and do some different things and fish different locations you were rewarded with less pressured fish and often times active biters. Main Lake Flats around Goose island such as West Goose and Grand View are still producing fish, but the fish have moved deeper especially when there is a lack of wind to push bait fish up shallow. The best fishing was in 9-13’ of water with either a jig and minnow or a lindy rig with a shiner or leech. We did not spend as much time fishing the main lake points this weekend which had a lot more to do with fighting the fishing pressure. Instead we focused on wind blow shoreline breaks and breaklines that dumped into 10-16’ of water throughout the main lake. Obviously Leech has and always will be a wind driven lake, so using that to your advantage to make controlled drifts or using your bow mount such as my Motorguide Xi5 to work breaklines proves to extremely productive. When it is calm snapping jigging far out produced, by going 1mph to 1.5mph at times or long lining a leech and crawler is extremely effective and will continue to get even better.
Don’t forget other tactics as well this time of year, there is always a time and place to slip bobber isolated weed pockets or rock piles as well as casting crankbaits at windblown shorelines or after dark.
Crappies have begun transitioning but are still prime for the picking with some work. Boy, Headquarters, and Shingobee are all producing fish in 6-12ft if water along weedlines and flats with isolated pockets of cabbage. A jig and plastic or a crappie minnow under a float are great presentations.
Perch are still being caught and mixed in with the walleyes, but there were reports of isolated schools of jumbos caught this weekend, just using a jig and minnow.
- Frankie's Live Bait and Marine - www.frankies.net
Brad, Corner of Hwy 8 and CR 77 (651-257-6334)
Please call us for opening weekend reports anytime!
- Marine General - www.marinegeneral.com
1501 London Road, on the edge of Lake Superior (218-724-8833)
Crappies biting in 12-14 feet of water on Fish Lake. Please call us for a fishing opener outlook!
- Babe's Bait and Tackle - BabesBaitEly.com
500 Kawishiwi Trail, Ely, MN, first business on the left as you are entering town of Ely from the west on Hwy 169 (218-365-6930)
Mixed reports have been filtering in all week, probably due to the fluctuating barometer and the cold drizzly weather. Some anglers who were focused, caught the most fish. It seems that the action was in pockets rather then spread across the lakes. Many walleyes were caught in the shallows. This is where it comes in handy to watch the waters surface. When small fish begin popping out of the water, you can be sure that something larger is chasing them. Casting a shallow running crank bait proves itself very effective. Many walleyes have been caught after dark by using lighted bobbers and free swimming a rainbow chub, shiner minnow, or leech on a number six or four hook.
Small mouth bass fishing is beginning to be very popular, and the bass have been more than cooperative. Bass over four pounds have been boated and seem to have an affinity for soft plastics lately. A quarter ounce lead head and three or four inch swim bait or tube is just the ticket to capture smallies in water less than eight feet.
Pike are still smashing suckers, some of them within feet of shore. Most forage fish will relate to the warmer shallow water near shorelines, and these eating machines will be there to dine. Casting spinner baits will definitely be productive and will give your gear a work out.
Some lake trout are being taker right from shore or docks by laying ciscoes right on the bottom. Some anglers are having success trolling spoons along the forty foot of water zone.
- Fish On Bait & Sport www.habitatnow.com
Kyle, 201 S Franklin St, 2 blocks south of stoplights in Glenwood (320-634-3667)
Sunfish and crappie bite has been good with good sizes…but the bite has been challenging at times. A lot of fish down there, just have to try different techniques to get them to bite. Freshwater shrimp have been working the best. We have all the favorite bait on hand as well as a full line of tackle...along with advice and destinations to try. We also have the "Habitat Outlet Store" well stocked with some of the most diverse and high quality food plot and native prairie seeds for habitat development. Many people looking at "spring food plots" now and ideas for habitat projects to improve their property. Also visit the Habitat Outlet on line at www.HabitatNOW.com for all your spring and fall habitat needs.
Swanson's Bait & Tackle - www.swansonsbait.com
Jim Tuller, Hwy 371 on the north end of Hackensack (218-675-6176)
The weather has been very warm. Leaves on the trees, grass is getting green, water temps are warming up. Crappie and Sunfish reports were pretty good over the weekend. Water temps in small, dark bottomed bays were in the mid 60's. The weather forecast for Opening weekend looks good. Expect Walleye fishing to be very good. Fish will be in typical opener spots this year. Bait situation is also looking good for next weekend. We have plenty of Shiners, Rainbows, Large Rainbows, nice Fatheads, Crappie Minnows, and Sucker Minnows. The Leech supply is also ahead of schedule with the nice weather.
- Gateway Store kabfishingreport.com - gatewaygeneral.com
Phil & Ellen Hart, US Hwy 53 & Co Rd 122, 30 miles south of Int'l Falls-Canadian border (218-875-2121)
Kabetogama-Namakan Fishing Report 5-17-15
Wind, rain and cool temperatures dominated the week in the Northland.
Anglers on shore or in a boat fared well fishing. Big numbers of Northern Pike have been caught throughout the lake.
Walleyes are being caught both in shallow water and as deep as 35’. Common denominator bait, minnows lead the way.
Slip bobbers working well in shallow water, slip sinker rigs if you’re moving, jig and minnow for the deep water.
Synopsis, shallow water providing larger walleyes, many pike and occasional sauger. Deep water given up keeper walleye, sauger, jumbo perch and an occasional pike.
Water still hovering around the low 50’s holding off walleye movement and a little more predictable bite.
Many docks useable on the lake now as shoreline water has risen about 10” plus this past week, another wet week we could be near normal water depth.
With the more normal temperatures beginning Wednesday I expect more action in the 18-25’ range with leeches and crawlers coming into play.
Looking for Tom Cod, Peterson Bay, Nebraska and Daily Bay to kick out walleyes by next weekend.
We’ve greened up and wildlife is abundant, Boundary Waters has nothing on us and we can motor to our favorite location.
See You Soon,
Crabby Phil & Ellen
LAKE OF THE WOODS
- Lake of the Woods Area Tourism Bureau - www.lakeofthewoodsmn.com
near Junction of Hwy 11 and Hwy 172 in Baudette, (1-800-382-FISH)
Lots of limits and trophy walleyes in the mix this week. Plenty of saugers and pike as well. Anglers had success fishing Pine Island and Lighthouse Gap in 15-19 feet or 22-26 feet. Heading west anglers fished the fields over rock west of Zippel Bay or near Gull Rock Reef and the Twin Islands. Best depths 18-22 or 26 feet. Shallower morning and evening. Anchoring with a 3/8 oz jig / minnow or drifting with spinners and minnows productive. Gold, hammered gold, pink, and white were the best colors.
On the Rainy River, mornings and evenings best. Depths of 18-22 feet. Anchoring and jigging effective. Those that drifted also caught some northern pike and smallmouth bass. Gold or green jigs best tipped with minnow or frozen shiner.
Up at the NW Angle, fish were found in 18-20 or 25-30 feet. Island points south of Oak Island and current areas held good numbers. Anchoring with jigs or drifting with spinners produced numbers of walleyes and jumbo perch. Crappies are still deep in 28-32 feet of water in Ontario waters. Lodging available at www.LakeoftheWoodsMN.com/lodgin
Lake of the Woods Resorts
- Anderson's Resorts - www.andersonsleech-lake.com
Tim, (1-800-516-0077) (1-800-516-0077)
Come and enjoy Leech Lake with us! Plan your summer vacation on Leech Lake!
- Chris Kuduk's Guide Service - www.kuduksguideservice.com (320-630-1761)
Smaller area lakes such as Platte, Sullivan, Shakopee, Ann, Knife have been producing panfish. On Mille Lacs perch and tullibee have been biting. Call Chris for a daily walleye report.
- Jeff Hanson's Guide Service
The 2015 ice fishing season is all but done now on Mille lacs with a few anglers still walking out and fishing panfish close to shore in the south bays and some boat harbors around the lake.
2015 Open water season preview:
Despite what you hear on the news, there are still plenty of walleyed and we anticipate plenty of great fishing this summer. Opener is on May 9th this year and we will be using jigs and minnows on the shallow shoreline breaks and rock structures in the 10-16' range as the fish are finishing up the spawn and transitioning to deeper water. This jog bite is a blast and one of the most fun bites of the season!
The smallmouth bass bite was tremendous last year and should be no different this year as well. The slot limit remains the same for both walleyes and bass this year.
We are expecting to see a significant amount of smaller 3 year old walleyes mixed in with the bigger ones this year. These fish were 10-12" and started showing up last August. They should be running around 11-13" this year. This class makes up the biggest year class on record in Mille Lacs! This crop of fish insures some great years ahead!
For up to the minute reports check out "hansonguideservice.com" or call 763-477-8553!
- Wayzata Bait & Tackle
Tim or Bob, half mile west off I-494 on Hwy 12 (952-473-2227)
Please call us anytime for an opening weekend report!
MISSISSIPPI - ST. CROIX
- Turk Gierke, Croixsippi Guide Service
With no snow and little rain the river is as low as the Army Corps of Engineers will allow it to go. The Corps manages the water levels via the Lock and Dam #3 down on the Mississippi River, the exact lock area that I just spent over two months guiding at fishing walleye and sauger…
With the low flow I am finding the fish scattered. There are nice 15″ to 19″ walleyes to be caught.
I have not seen or heard of many big fish being caught, There will be some bigger ones caught though in the next two weeks. May is a very good month for big fish. The St. Croix is still though a numbers vs. big fish resource in my opinion.
The season is still early and there is a lot to figure out with the low water and how soon fish will show up in the post spawn locations, and the early summer locations.
We had best luck in the 12 to 18 foot range and livebait has been best.
Water level is 675.3 feet above sea level and water temp 62 degrees.
May 8, 2015
- Smokey Hills Outdoor Store, Nathan, www.smokyhillsoutdoorstore.com
19143 US HWY 71 N, Park Rapids, MN (218-237-5099)
April 24, 2015
Park Rapids Area fishing Report 5/8/15 FISHING OPENER With Walleye and Northern season within reach, anglers are stocking up and getting ready for the hectic opener. Water temps are the most important thing during the spring spawn season. The lakes … Continued
Park Rapids Area Fishing Report 4/24/15 With the ice off of all the Park Rapids area lakes and the waters warming quickly. The Crappie and sunfish spawn is moving quicker than usual. Crappies- With spawn in full … Continued
- Wheaton Service & Bait www.wheatonservice.com
Neighbor Steve, 912 Broadway, Wheaton, MN (320-563-1400)
We are preparing for open water. Getting our guide boats ready and setting our prices on our Wheaton Service/Fish'in Hole Lodge, lodging and fishing packages. Fishing packages start at 2 nights/1 day of fishing, up to 4 nights/3 days fishing! Call for pricing. Coming mid-summer: Fish'in Hole Lodge Skid Houses. Check us out on Facebook!
Mase's In Towne Marine - www.intownemarina.com
Cindy, corner of Lake and Elm (952-442-2096)
The Fishing Opener is almost here! Despite the early ice out this spring, the weather has varied enough that the water temperature isn't abnormal for the time of year as it just recently began approaching 60 degrees on Lake Waconia. Therefore, we are hoping for a good post-spawn walleye bite! We expect that you will find action in traditional shallower spots, such as the Rock Dock, the Carp Trap or Harm's Point, particularly in the overnight hours. Having said that, during the day it makes sense to move a tad deeper to fish some of the reefs in 12 to 15 feet of water, especially due to the noticeably clearer water we've seen this spring. Reefs like Center, North, Keg's, and Anderson's might be more productive due to the earlier seasonal start. We still think that baits like Large Leeches and either Fathead Minnows or Shiner Minnows will be best to catch the most fish, although crawlers have worked well some years on the Opener. Always keep in mind, Lake Waconia has a 16 inch walleye minimum.
For those that like to target northern pike on the Opener, we feel good about the prospects to get some action. This winter, we continued to see numerous catches in the 4 to 8 pound range. Reefs like Pillsbury, Center and North are great areas to focus if you are casting. While trolling shouldn't be to troublesome, as the weeds aren't as high as you'd expect for the ice being gone for over a month. Locations to troll, like the south side in front of the cemetery, by the beach, and on the east side by the Clay Banks should all be good spots to try. Sucker minnows are a popular choice for live bait fishermen.
Regulations on Largemouth Bass changed this year! Now, anglers have the chance to actively fish for bass for a 2-week "Catch and Release" period. Keep in mind, you will NOT be able to keep bass until the official Bass Opener on May 23rd. Early season bass are always good in the shallows, as they will typically be in their spawning pattern in early May.
As for the other legal species, we continue to hear plenty of good reports of crappie action! It has continued to be productive by the weeds of Waconia Bay in 8 to 12 feet of water. Crappie minnows and jigs such as Flu Flus have been popular. So far, we have been surprised that we haven't seen much crappie movement in the shallows by our docks. Last year they seemed to spawn a little outside the shallow zones, and so far it appears to be another year like that. The sunfish spawn is still a couple of weeks away, so while you may get into some action, the best bite is yet to come!
A safety reminder for all boaters on Waconia...this spring the water levels are lower than they have been for several years. Keep that in mind when cruising out from or to shorelines, especially in the Nelson's Flats area and the shallow part of Pillsbury Reef on the NW side of the lake. You don't want to start your season with prop damage. If you do get unlucky and ding your prop, we offer repair service through BC Propeller. We get props picked up and delivered every Monday and Thursday during the heart of the season.
We look forward to seeing you as we get into this exciting time of year! We are OPEN ALL NIGHT on Friday, May 8th for the Opener to take care of your bait and tackle needs and to help get you the info you need for a successful day. Stop in to say hi, or to have a quick snack and warm up!
For those of you not fishing that are taking part in Waconia Chamber's "Sister Saturday", be 1 of 100 early shoppers receiving free swag bags that include a Pontoon Rental discount from us!
If you are interested in renting a fishing boat or pontoon, give us a call for future reservations. Our rental season will begin on the weekend of May 16th!
We hope to see you soon. Happy Opener and good luck!
- Walleye Visions - www.mnfishingconnections.com
Tom Neustrom, 21622 Airport Rd, Grand Rapids, email@example.com, (218-327-2312)
The 2015 fishing season is upon us very soon. Water levels are at a record low and it may be a bit hard to get into some of the smaller lakes in the area. Big Winnie, and the connecting Cutfoot lakes should be good destinations for the opener. Lack of spring runoff, snow, and rain has put things in a different scenario over the last couple years. The resorts on Big Winnie will welcome anglers with not only good fishing this opener but access to the big lake. The anticipation of a new protected slot for walleyes of 18-23 inches will provide anglers with an opportunity to keep fish for a nice meal. The DNR is excited for the number of walleyes that they feel are available and we are anticipating a great opening day turnout. There is plenty of shiners available this opener so bait will not be a problem. The standard Jig and minnow combination will bring many walleyes to the boat, but throw a few leeches in a cooler for it may make a difference if conditions change. Have a great opener and a safe one and always be careful.