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Minnesota Fish Tales Fishing Report
The Most In-Depth Statewide Fishing Report in Minnesota!

Fish Tales Archive

© 2017 OutdoorsWeekly.com - Copyright Info

BATTLE LAKE
- Ben's Bait & Tackle
Bennet or Craig Stich, Junction of Hwy 78 and 210 (218-864-5596)

Otter Tail and West Battle are kicking out walleyes in 5-10 on shiner minnows. Crappies and bluegills are biting on Stalker, West Battle and Fish. Northern pike biting on Otter Tail, Donald, South Turtle Lake and West Battle in 10-15 feet.

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LAKE BENTON
- Veire's Mini-Mart - Visit our Facebook Page
Dave, 117 E Benton St, corner of Hwy 75 and 14 (507-368-4204)

Anglers on the west side of Lake Benton found little action, with relatively little wind. Even the bullheads weren’t biting, and only a few walleyes were pulled out. Action was a little steadier on the east end of the lake, with several nice fishing caught using minnows. Most of the walleyes were smaller males, and many of the females may still be in a pre-spawn pattern.
Rock Lake was also fairly slow, with only a few walleyes coming out, although one group of anglers hooked a channel catfish.
The action on Lake Shetek was also pretty slow, as anglers crowded the banks searching for the year’s first walleyes. Even using a variety of methods, from a bare hook and worm, to Lindy rigs tipped with a minnow, to casting crankbaits, anglers only found a few walleyes worthy of a trip to the frying pan.
Lac Qui Parle had a pretty steady bite a couple of spots on the lake, with the best action coming right at sunrise. Walleyes here seemed to be firmly in a pre-spawn pattern, as most walleyes were caught off shore, vertical jigging from the boat. Small jigs pitched over rocky areas and retrieved slowly caught some heavy pre-spawn females. Fishing should continue to pick up as walleyes cycle through the spawning areas and start to feed heavily post-spawn.

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BLACKDUCK AREA
- Timberline Sport & Tackle
Carl Adams, Junction of Hwy 71 and Blackduck Lake Rd. (218-835-4636)

Blackduck, Round and Island walleyes biting on a jig/minnow in 8-10 feet. Panfish biting on Blackduck, Round, and Gilstead.

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BRAINERD AREA
- Leisure Outdoor Adventures - www.leisureoutdooradventures.com
Jason Freed, Toby Kvalevog, Jeff Andersen (1-855-LOA-HOOK or 1-855-562-4665)

June 21

Here is your Leech Lake, Brainerd, and Mille Lacs Fishing Guide Report.  Our Fishing Guides, have been busy hitting the water in search of walleyes on Leech Lake, Mille Lacs, and within the Brainerd Lakes area.  We are hitting the summer bug hatch and things are officially changing.  For some anglers this is deemed as a challenge, but we think the bug hatch can bring some of the best fishing of the season.   

Leech Lake
The mayfly hatch is in full bloom and should continue for another week or so throughout the lake.  When the mayflies hatch, our fishing guides on Leech Lake break out a couple different presentations to catch these Leech Lake walleyes.  Using your electronics, keep an eye on gravel to mud transition areas and bug hatches taking place under your boat.  Trolling spinners with crawlers or leeches or using a slow death hook and a crawler are our go tos for putting Leech Lake walleyes in the boat.  Both of these presentations, do a good job of matching the hatch that is taking place.  SPEED is the key.  This past week slower was better than faster.  .6-.8MPH was best.  

On the Main Lake, the major rock bars and reefs are still producing fish in 16-20ft of water.  Mokey, North Bar, Big Rock Reef, Sub, Annex, and the reefs around Pelican Island are all good places to start.  Be sure to be ready to switch up presentations and baits, because it can change by the day and even by the hour at times.  Also the flats and transition areas around Goose Island, Duck Points, Little and Big Hardwoods, and Traders Bay are also producing fish in 10-15ft of water.  

In Walker Bay, fish are still being found on under water points in 18-25 feet of water or shoreline breaks.  Lindy rigs with Leeches or chubs have been the best producers.  Fishing in Walker Bay has been tougher, but should improve as we move farther into the summer.

There has also been a good slip bobber and leech bite going on.  Look to wind blown shorelines, points, or weed beds.  This is a great way to catch walleyes when other things aren’t working.

Mille Lacs
Mille Lacs has been going really steady this week.  The bigger walleyes can be found out on the mud flats preparing to eat bugs.  Drifting a night crawler or leech in 24-32 feet of water normally will produce.  There are still walleyes in the rocks and the best presentation is a Lindy Rig/leech or crawler.  
The smallmouth bite has been going strong , and cast a marabou jig in 4-10 feet of water.  The rock/sand transitions have been holding the bass.  Dark colored tubes, jerkbaits, and drop shots have also been catching bass.    

Brainerd
Fishing has been pretty darn good around the Brainerd Lakes Area!  Walleyes have been biting on Gull, North Long, and Whitefish.  Keeping an open mind on what technique to use has been important because some days the walleyes will be in the weeds, and other days they are off the weed edge.  When the walleyes are in the weeds, pitching a jig/minnow or a jig/plastic into the cabbage weeds is best.  If that does not produce walleyes, then switch to a slip bobber and leech.  Cast the bobber into the weed pockets and let it sit for a few minutes, and if it does not get bit, re-cast the bobber and tr a new spot.  If you can graph fish out on the weed edge, use a Lindy Rig with a redtail minnow, creek chub, leech, or night crawler.  The best depths for the weed walleyes is 5-12 feet and the deeper fish normally will be located from 10-30 feet of ater.  Be sure to fish the windy weed beds first as this will drive the bait fish into those areas.  If the walleyes   

Until next week. Tight lines!
Leisure Outdoor Adventures Guide Team

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CHISAGO CITY
- Frankie's Live Bait and Marine - www.frankies.net
Brad, Corner of Hwy 8 and CR 77 (651-257-6334)

Panfish are biting on North Lindstrom, South Lindstrom, Chisago, North Center and South Center. Work the weedlines for bluegills and move to the deeper water and bays and channels for crappie action.

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DULUTH
- Marine General - www.marinegeneral.com
1501 London Road, on the edge of Lake Superior (218-724-8833)

Lake trout and coho salmon are biting at Park Point on Lake Superior. Try trolling stickbaits in the top 20 feet of water. Smelt run is good.

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ELY
- 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)

The walleye bite has slowed this past week, perhaps due to the recent mayfly hatch. Some anglers had some success, but action has been relatively slow. The fish that have been caught were coming from shallow water in the ten foot range, around weed edges or in the mud flats.
Smallmouth bass action has been heating up in spite of the bug hatch and are responding well to surface lures near shore. Hula Poppers and Jitterbugs have been the go-to baits along with Torpedos and Tiny Torpedos a close second. Best action has been early and late in the day. Some nice smallies have been caught with diving crank baits in a crawfish pattern during the heat of the day. As always a lively leech or crawler can also do the job when fished under a bobber.
Some nice pike have been taken using spinner baits or large crank baits fished along weed edges or near submerged structure. The old adage, "big bait, big fish", is still applicable. For a more laid back approach, try fishing a frozen smelt or live or dead sucker fished right on the bottom.
Lake trout have still been co-operating on Burntside Lake. Trolled spoons or deep diving crank baits have been the ticket to success there. Try to get your offering down in the forty to fifty-five foot water depths for the best action.

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GLENWOOD
- Fish On Bait & Sport www.habitatnow.com
Kyle, 201 S Franklin St, 2 blocks south of stoplights in Glenwood (320-634-3667)

Visit the Habitat Outlet on line at www.HabitatNOW.com for all your habitat needs.  Fish On!

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HACKENSACK
Swanson's Bait & Tackle - www.swansonsbait.com
Caleb Garoutte, Hwy 371 on the north end of Hackensack (218-675-6176)

Many great walleye reports! Leech Lake and Woman Lake are both doing well on the wind blown structure. Some of the smaller lakes in the area like Birch, Webb, Baby, and Pine Mountain have been putting a few walleye in nets too!

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KABETOGAMA-NAMAKAN
- 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-Ash River Fishing Report 7-9-17

The 4th of July has come and gone and fortunately along with it the mayflies.  After a tough bite during the holiday due to a significant mayfly hatch we have finally turned the corner and the bite is improving.    Walleyes are being found along deep weed lines and are now starting to show up on mid lake reefs.  A short snell (2-3 ft) tipped with a leech is still producing the most fish.  Water temps are well into the 70’s and the 22-26 ft depths have been better as of late.  Crawlers should start to produce more consistently as we get into the mid summer months.  If the walleyes aren’t biting look in the same areas for schools of perch.  The ones being caught are of the jumbo variety.
Smallmouth bass are still being caught along shorelines casting just about anything.  Crawdad colored rapalas are always a good bet.
Larger northern pike are beginning to seek a colder environment as water temps rise.  Trolling deep diving cranks is the way to go and can produce some nice fish.
It won’t be long and the blueberries should start to ripen.  There is an abundance out there.  Bring the bug spray as with our wet weather recently the mosquitos are quite a nuisance as well as horseflies.
Please be aware that loons, ducks and most animals are cruising the lake now with their babies.  Keep your distance and enjoy the show but realize that any unnecessary stress you cause is unhealthy for both the parents and their young.  If loons and ducks are calling loudly while you are near that just means they not appreciating you invading their space!  Take a quick picture and move on.

Canoes and Kayaks are out in full force.  Slowing down and creating less wake is much appreciated!  It is a great way to enjoy the park so grab your paddle and enjoy the solitude.

BINGO is in full swing at the Kabetogama “Town” Hall on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8:00pm. Great way to socialize and have fun at the same time.

Until next time!       

Jason & Robyn Cooper

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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)

Many limits this week as the bite remains excellent.  Jig/minnow or jig/leech and bouncers with spinners with crawlers or minnows remaining a great tactic to land fish. Gold, glow and bright colors doing the best.  Walleyes and saugers in 14-20' with others a little deeper to 29-30'.  Anglers just starting to troll cranks.  Lots of areas producing all around the lake.  Pike, perch, and a great smallmouth bite mixed in as well. Lots of mayflies around right now but fishing remains good.

Anglers in the Rainy River finding some walleyes with morning/evening the best.  Trolling cranks or pulling spinners a good idea to cover more water. Smallmouth bass in good numbers along shorelines and feeder streams. Sturgeon fishing opened July 1st and initial reports are very good for sturgeon anglers with some monsters boated.

Up at the NW Angle, fishing remains great. The areas by Little Oak, Crowduck, and Garden Island all holding good populations of fish. Crawlers on a hammered gold and/or orange/chartreuse spinner are producing fish out of 18 - 28 feet. On days with no wind, troll 1.0 - 1.25 mph with spinners.  Crankbaits starting to boat fish more consistently. On the Canadian side, bottom bouncers and spinners have been sending anglers home with limits as have the traditional jig and minnow.  Muskie fishing going good with numbers of 30-45" inch fish and a few 50 inchers. Lodging, charters and guides are available at www.LakeoftheWoodsMN.com/Lodging.

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LEECH LAKE
- Anderson's Resorts - www.andersonsleech-lake.com
Tim, (1-800-516-0077) spirit@arvig.net (e-mail) 

Leech Lake is going strong! We had a great opener and if it wasn't for the weather I think we would be having a banner year of catching! Our guests have been catching lots of walleyes in the 20- to 25-inch class on the main lake, lots of fun! They are nice and fat and are putting on a great fight. Jig/shiner is the best ticket, followed by Lindy rig with shiner, followed up by Lindy rig with leeches. Nine to 11 feet of water seem to be the best but don't be surprised if they are shallower! The main points Like Stoney, Rogers, Diamond,Otter tail, Pine all have been good! Pike action has also been great they have been hitting the shiner as well, and also almost anything shiny in the bays! We have had people catch and release smallmouth bass (Huddles reef area is on fire) and muskies fishing for walleyes! Crappie and panfish action was really good on opening weekend but with the rain and cooler weather has really slowed down. Fishing is only going to get better as the water temps continues to climb. If you have not already made vacation plans for June or the rest of the summer, do not worry there are still openings up here on Leech Lake! Our walleye limit is 4, protected slot 20-26. Come enjoy Leech Lake with us!

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MILLE LACS
- Chris Kuduk's Guide Service - www.kuduksguideservice.com
(320-630-1761)
For up to the minute reports, call Chris at 320-630-1761!

Mille Lacs walleyes are going great guns! Strong smallmouth and pike bite also. Ann, Knife, Shakopee, Platte, Sullivan are producing a great panfish bite. Ann and Knife are also kicking out some walleyes. The launches are doing fabulous, give Chris a call to hook you up with a launch trip or a guided boat trip! Dickie's Launches have been very successful! Give them a call to set up a large group fishing trip! Listen to Outdoor Adventures on www.twincitiesnewstalk.com (iheart Radio) for reports from Chris! Call Chris anytime for up-to-the-minute reports!

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LAKE MINNETONKA
- Wayzata Bait & Tackle
Tim or Bob, half mile west off I-494 on Hwy 12 (952-473-2227)

Crappies are biting in the milfoil in 5-10 feet on Lake Minnetonka. Lake Independence is also producing some crappies. For both crappies and sunfish, try Medicine in 5 feet.

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MISSISSIPPI - ST. CROIX
- Turk Gierke, Croixsippi Guide Service
www.croixsippi.com
(651-208-2811)

May 30, 2017 St. Croix River Walleye Fishing

Walleye Rod bending on the St. Croix River last weekend.
Walleye Rod bending on the St. Croix River last weekend. The rod is a Limit Creek “Smoothie” LCS69MLF, this model has been in my boat for over ten years. They work period. Looking for a new rod under a 100.00 You won’t find a better one as far as I am concerned.

Get the Net! I got the NET! Nice walleye!
Get the Net! I got the NET! Nice walleye!

The bite has been about as good as you can expect from a metro fishery, we have been able to  catch fish very well nearly every trip this month of May.

19' walleye a good one in my opinion. Released to grow and bite another day.
19″ walleye a good one in my opinion. Released to grow and bite another day.She even took the hooks out!! That's a keeper fella's.
She even took the hooks out!! That’s a keeper fella’s.

The bite will come down to earth in June but it still should be good. May has been great, anytime I can guide exclusively via livebait rigs – that is a good bite. Crankbaits are a speciality of mine and they are needed no doubt, but customers really like rigging – so if the cranks are not needed, I don’t crank.  You have to give the fish what they want.

Noah and his father Kary. We had a ball. Noah wanted to know if I needed an 'apprentice'. He had a
Noah and his father Kary. We had a ball. Noah wanted to know if I needed an “apprentice”. I have guided Kary for 19 years, He is on the move going to Texas for health reasons.  Kary wanted us three to get in the boat before he had to move on.  Special morning  – and we limited out by noon.

Did you know you never fish the same water twice on the river? It always flows and moves on.  It might be the same “spot” , but the waters not the same. The river just keeps flowing on.

Like I said for a month livebait has been solid leeches and crawlers. Hard to beat on a Lindy Rig. 8 to 22 FOW.

The river is high. 683.2 feet above sea level (steady) as measured in Stillwater, MN. The water temperature is 62 to 64 (down 2 degrees).

Signed, Charlie “Turk” Gierke

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PARK RAPIDS
- Smokey Hills Outdoor Store, Josh Severtson, www.smokeyhills.com
Park Rapids, Minnesota (218-237-5099)

Walleye- Search for 5'-14' of water in the thick vegetation. Look for the first sharp breaks and drop offs in the lake. Tie up a Lindy "Walleye Drift Rig" paired with either a redtail or leech.

Bass- Choosing between two methods in 1'-4' of water. Casting towards shore from a distance so you don't scare the fish up in the shallow water. Cast in or around the pencil reeds and lily pads to find the big mamas hiding. Tie on a Lunkerhunt "Pocket frog" for those fun explosions on top of the water! For the slower approach tie on a VMC "Wacky weedless" hook paired with a YUM "Dinger" for best results! 

Crappie/Sunfish- In a variety of depths from 2'-8' depending on the average depth of the lake. Look for a lot of spawning structure such as timber, lily pads, and docks. Tie up a slip bobber a Custom jigs and spins "Flu-Flu" feather jig tipped with a crappie minnow or small leech to keep the kids busy! 

The Park Rapids area lakes are often missed by those anglers driving all the way up to Red Lake or Lake of the Woods looking for lunker walleyes, stop by and speak with Josh in the fishing department of Smokey Hills Outdoor Store and he can point you in the right direction with up to date information on where and how to put an obese walleye on your wall! https://www.facebook.com/SmokeyHills/

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LAKE TRAVERSE
- Wheaton Service & Bait    www.wheatonservice.com
Neighbor Steve, 912 Broadway, Wheaton, MN (320-563-1400)

The walleye opener on Lake Traverse was April 22! And the weather was a 10! The walleye bite was a 5. A lot of male walleyes boated, but few reports of females caught, due to how close to spawning they are. In fact the spawn may be happening as I type:) The fishing on Lake Traverse only gets better as the water warms! Some very large catfish were caught over the weekend, the largest reported to us was 30 lbs. Nice fish! I believe Lake Traverse to be among the best the U.S. has to offer. Looking for a place to stay while fishing Lake Traverse? Wheaton Service now offers lodging a The Fishin' Hole Lodge. The Lodge offers a private parking lot, beds, kitchen area, pool table room with a wet bar, big screen TV's. Only you and your group stays at the lodge at a time. If you normally stay at the motel, Give us a try! You'll be glad you did:) Walleye Guides and Catfish Guides are also available. All full day guide packages come with a real SHORE LUNCH cooked over the open fire! Give us a call, we'd love to have you! 320-563-1400 and ask for Steve or Wheaton Service on FB, or Fishin' Hole Lodge on FB. Thanks a million and Take a Kid Fishin!

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WACONIA
Mase's In Towne Marine - www.intownemarina.com
Cindy, corner of Lake and Elm (952-442-2096)

Sunfish are currently in shallow water on their spawning beds and are actively biting.  There has been plenty of crappie action as well, with 9 to 10 inch keepers being common, with anglers fishing in 9 to 12 feet of water.  Walleyes have been bucking normal lake trends on certain days.  Yesterday (6/6/17), there were reports of late-afternoon walleyes biting in the same areas as the crappies.  That’s usually uncommon, but this season has we’ve seen plenty of things we normally don’t see.  Most common walleye areas continue to be around Cemetery, Kegs and North Reefs in 12 to 17 feet of water. Bass continue to bite in most depths as well.  All in all, it has been a VERY good week of fishing for those out wetting a line.

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WINNIBIGOSHISH
- Walleye Visions - www.mnfishingconnections.com
Tom Neustrom, 21622 Airport Rd, Grand Rapids, tom@mnfishingconnections.com, (218-327-2312)

The shiners are running and the walleyes will be actively chasing bait. With the cooler weather of late look for walleyes to hang shallow before heading off shore. All the points from sugar, Ravens, mallard, to stony point should be great spots to try. Depths of 6-12 feet will be best. Vmc mooneye jigs and a shiner will be very productive or with a slip sinker rig with a shiner. Have a great opener and be safe.

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