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

© 2018 OutdoorsWeekly.com - Copyright Info

Central MN

Read Wisconsin Fishing Reports here

Bait Corner

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

8-7- Walleyes: Best lakes are Ottertail and West Battle. Try leeches in 15-20 feet during the day or crankbaits in 10 feet in early mornings and evenings. Sunfish and crappies: Best lakes are Rush, Silver and West Battle in the 10-12 foot weeds. Northern pike: Try sucker minnows in the 10-20 foot weedlines on Ottertail or Donald lakes. Muskies: Best option is West Battle at the 20-foot weedline. Bass: Try Silver, East Battle and Blanche at the 10-15 foot weeds.

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- Veire's Mini-Mart
Dave, 117 E Benton St, corner of Hwy 75 and 14 (507-368-4204)

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

8-7- Walleyes are biting on Blackduck at the 10-14 foot weedlines. Try leeches during the evening hours for the best bites. Island and Round are also producing walleyes at the 10-15 foot weedlines on leeches. For bass, try fishing North and South Twin lakes at the weedlines. Gull and Pimusche are producing bluegills in about 10-14 feet of water.

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

8-13- Leech Lake - Not a whole lot has change for our Leech Lake Fishing Guides this past week.  The bite has slowly began to pick up for walleyes but also some jumbo perch. We have been spending our time rigging crawlers along breaklines and underwater humps and points and slip bobber fishing where we can find nice patches of cabbage.  This is especially effective on calm and sunny days.

Fishing has been best for our guide team in Walker Bay as well as other bays on the West end of the lake.  There has been alot of pressure in areas, so the key is to seek out new ground and realize that often times those fish either move out or will get pressured to the point they won’t be as easy to fish.  Trust your electronics and drive until you start seeing bait and then pay attention to that depth and key in on those specific areas of structure and you will often find fish. Like anything wind plays a key on Leech and where you should often fish.  Be sure to go faster when pulling cralwers to keep those small perch off, so pulling those rigs .8-1.1 mph has been best for us.

Otherwise we have spent alot of time fishing other lakes in the Walker Area and having great luck.  Pulling spinners along deep weed edges in 18-24 feet of water has yielded great action for walleyes and bass.  Rigging chubs has been another great tactic for catching big smallmouth, pike, and some bonus big walleyes. Drop shotting, jigs with senkos rigged wacky style, and even top water at times have been go to presentations for putting big bass in the boat.  Panfish are relating to the weeds in 8-14 feet of water. Try using 1/32 oz jig with a small minnow or tube and find the right kind of weeds and you will find some great panfishing this time of year.

Brainerd Lakes - Walleye fishing on most area lakes has been spotty.  However, some days we have had some really good fishing with big fish and keepers mixed together.  Then other days, it seems like they vanish, but this is a typical August trend. Look for schools of walleyes to be moving into the deeper weedlines, and even off the weedlines in 15-25 feet of water.  Red tails and creek chub minnows on Live Bait rigs have been the standout, but on slower days it is worth running a crawler or leech also. When we get some cool nights and the water temps drop a little, these fish will go bonkers!   

Bass and northerns have been active on the deeper weed edges also.  Largemouth have been hunkering down in the thickest weeds, so casting swim jigs or tubes has been the best.  A great way to catch northern pike this time of year is to fish a beefed up Lindy Rig consisting of a 20-30 lb fluorocarbon leader.  Put a large minnow on a 1/0 hook and fish the deeper weedlines i 15-25 feet of water. An added bonus is that you may run into a giant walleye also!

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- Minnesota Fishing Guide Service
www.minnesotaguideservice.com - www.minnesotaicefishhouserental.com
Captain Josh Hagemeister (218-732-9919, 320-291-0708)

Now is the best time of the summer for fishing! The water temps are hot and so are the fish. Walleyes are being caught roaming deep lake basins, sunken islands and of course the best walleye spot ever—weed beds! Plastic swim baits or small jigging Rapalas worked aggressively will do the trick in the 8-12 foot range. The monster bluegills are being caught and released off of deep weedlines and rock piles in the 15-20 foot range. Bottom bouncer JB lures crawler combos have been the best. Piles of largemouth bass can be caught fishing cabbage beds in deep 8-12 foot depth range with rattle baits like the Bill Lewis rattle trap. Schools of bass are being found on deep weedy humps or weedlines in the 15-20 foot range using Texas rigged power worms. Lotsa Fish! Lotsa Fun!

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

8-7- Walleyes are biting on South Center in 15-17 feet of water using crawlers. Bass at biting at the weedlines on most area lakes. Panfish are biting on area lakes such as North and South Center, North and South Lindstrom and Chisago. Stop in our give us a call for daily reports!

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

8-7- Island Lake is producing walleyes on sucker minnows in about 20 feet of water. Smallmouth are mixed in with the walleyes. Fish Lake has also had a great walleye bite going lately. Coho and lake trout are biting on spoons on Lake Superior near Two Harbors.

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- 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)

8-20 - Anglers are still finding cooperative walleyes on many of the area lakes recently. Most fish are being caught using crawler tipped spinner rigs, but some folks have been doing well with crank baits trolled along drop-offs at the mouths of shallow flats both early and late in the day. The mid-day bit has been somewhat deeper, as folks ply the waters over eighteen feet down. Some are having success in the late evening hours fishing minnows under lighted bobbers in the shallows.
Trout anglers have been doing well on Tofte Lake and Miners Pit by trolling small crank baits and spoons. Set your depth at ten to fifteen feet down during the day. Early and late these same trout are striking lures run right at the surface. A crawler under a bobber will also take many of these same fish. It's an easy way to fill a stringer and all it takes is a little patience.
Smallmouth bass will readily attack a surface lure as these calm mornings continue. Work your baits around weed edges or on mid lake rock piles early in the day and use sub-surface cranks and soft baits as the sun rises higher in the sky. Spinner baits are taking their toll on bass throughout the day, but one must expect to donate a few to the pike that are lying in wait in the same waters in search of a meal.
While on the subject of pike, try trolling larger profile crank baits near weed edges and rocky points. At this time of year, no lure seems to be too large to entice some of these monsters to bite. Spinner baits and spoons will work very well for those willing to keep casting. Some impressive numbers are being reported, but most of the fish are in the three to five pound range, which happen to be the ideal size for eating, although some true line busters in the ten to fifteen pound range have been taken.

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

8-6-Walleye fishing is still fairly spotty across the area lakes. Many anglers are reporting finding nice pockets of fish, but they always seem to be fleeting patterns that change rapidly. One of the more consistent methods for catching some walleye around the area has been crankbaits - whether trolling or casting they've been producing. Work the shallow flats located around the deeper water on the lake and pitch cranks late evening and after dark. Also, trolling suspended fish over deeper water on some lakes has worked well too - Ten Mile is always one of the notable lakes for this.

Bass fishing continues to be excellent across the area. Big Largemouth bass are putting the feed bags on up in the weeds. We've also heard some great reports over the deeper edges along the emergent weeds. Spinnerbaits have been working very well. Smallmouth have been day to day, but when they're hot they're hot. During the day use your electronics to locate fish and target them with hair jigs and drop shots, but in the early morning and late evening get out the topwater!

Crappie fishing has been pretty spotty, with plenty of fish available, but they're just spread out and you have to keep on the move. Jigs tipped with crappie minnows are by far the best. A good artificial jig works very well too especially when dragging over cabbage tops because you can pop it more aggressively to when you hang up to stay weed free. Focus on those 6-14' weedbeds.

Muskie continues to be fantastic across the area. Leech has been on fire the last couple weeks, and many fish are being moved regularly out there. We're starting to see more of a trend towards the rocks, but weed and shore fish are still be moved. Smaller lakes in the area like Little Boy, Wabedo, and Baby have been slower, but are still showing plenty of fish.

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- Cooper's Gateway Store kabfishingreport.com - gatewaygeneral.com
Jason and Robyn Cooper, US Hwy 53 & Co Rd 122, 30 miles south of Int'l Falls-Canadian border (218-875-2121)

8-20- No real signs of fall just yet.
Even though the lake is getting a little quieter as young adults head back to school, fall seems to be holding off nicely.  The trees are extremely stressed right now due to the lack of moisture so a lot of them are losing their foliage but not because mother nature is turning the page is her season book.  Hopefully we get much-needed rain so we have our typical fall colors we are month away from.  About the only thing giving us a hint of fall is bear hunters are out scouting the woods and hazelnuts are falling.  Pelicans have started leaving the area, but they are usually the first to go so no big deal there.  With all that being said, fishing still continues to be excellent.
Walleye fishing really never put the brakes on this year.  If anything, it has gotten better the last week or so.  Typically, we don’t see a jig and minnow bite for a couple weeks, but even that is working as we continue into late August.  If you can find leeches, that is the way to go on a live bait rig.  No real depth to speak of but on a most recent fishing trip we did find them consistently in 22’-30’.  Seek out your favorite fishing spots and you will find fish.  The reports and pictures coming in right now tell the tale.  Fishing is good.
Water temperatures have remained consistent which has kept northern pike and small mouth bass from moving much.  Trolling over the main lake basin is producing some nice pike right now as they are still relating to the thermocline.  Once the water temperature drops smallies will head to the reefs to put their winter feedbags on.
It’s been a hot and dry summer up here in Gods country.  This next week looks to be a nice reprieve.  Perfect for some hiking, sightseeing and of course fishing!  If you are looking for live bait, especially leeches, stop in at Gateway as we still have a good supply of large and jumbo to tip your hook with!
Gateway community garage sale 8/31 and 9/1.
As always, we’ll see you soon at Gateway!
Jason and Robyn

Guide Reports - Dominic Ruis - This week has brought lots of heat, sun and not much wind but fishing has continued to stay consistent on Kab with best luck coming in 22-28ft of water on crawler and leech live bait rigs. Namakan the bite has slowed down and they seem to be deeper around 28-34ft being the best. We are nearing the end of the summer heat and fish will soon transition to many different areas of the lake so don't be hesitant to try new things as water temps drop.

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- Lake of the Woods Area Tourism Bureau - www.lakeofthewoodsmn.com
near Junction of Hwy 11 and Hwy 172 in Baudette, (1-800-382-FISH)

8-15-Walleyes of all sizes still  being caught. Trophies being caught daily. Pulling spinners and jigging a crawler working well during lower light, crankbaits effective all day in the mud. 24 -32 feet. Reefs to the west producing lots of good fish. Some struggling to find saugers but others have found them schooled up in good numbers. Chartreuse, pink, UV colors working good.
On the Rainy River, sturgeon fishing "keep season" is open until Sept 30. Pike and smallies are being found in  tributaries into Rainy River. Weed edges holding a variety of fish in back bays and on the river itself.

Up at the NW Angle... On the Minnesota side, spinners and crawler harnesses are still the preferred method of walleye fishing, with the hot colors being pink/gold, orange/gold and orange/chartreuse. Walleye are being caught off of structure scattered in the mud between 20-30 feet. Down riggers and deep running crankbaits have also been productive. Canadian walleye are being caught in channels off of islands and along reefs in 18-25 feet of water. Both bottom bouncers with a crawler harness and a jig with minnow or shiner have both been successful. Muskies favoring rocks over weeds right now with some 50" + fish being caught.  A complete list of lodging, packages, guides and fishing info available at www.LakeoftheWoodsMN.com/Lodging

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- Sportsman's Lodges, Lake of the Woods, Rainy River - www.sportsmanslodges.com (1-800-862-8602)

8-20- Chasing down the Walleyes. The bite has been good this week. It was a warm week with highs in the 80’s and 90’s. Water temperature is currently 75 degrees. The weather for the week ahead looks great. Highs in the 70’s and 80, light winds and cooling down in the evening. Anglers have been chasing down the schools of fish in 27’-32’. Drifting using spinners tipped with a minnow or crawler as well as trolling with crank baits have been the most successful techniques. Gold and orange spinners have been good colors and white and bright colors for shad raps. The mud flats have been hot for finding a mix of good eaters and trophy walleyes.  Stay on the move and get out and have some fun! Guides available!

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- Sportsman's Oak Island Lodge, NW Angle/Oak Island, MN - www.oakislandlodge.com (800-772-8411)

8-20- The walleyes are snapping. A good walleye bite in 13'-16' and 20'-30' of water along and on top of reefs and in the mud this week. Drifting or a slow troll with spinners and minnow or jig and minnow have been techniques of choice. Water temperature is currently 74 degrees. It's been a warm week in the islands. Gold and orange have been hot colors.

Muskies & Northern Pike. Cabbage bays and trolling deep bays and rock points with bucktails, top water and jerk baits is hot.

Few openings left for Labor Day weekend. Call 800-772-8411. 

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- Anderson's Resorts - www.andersonsleech-lake.com/spirit/
Tim, (1-800-516-0077)

Muskie hunters, if you do not have Leech Lake on your to do list you should put it there right now! They are going strong! We had a teenager from Texas catch a 49.5 incher first day fishing them! Rocky shorelines seem to be the ticket but never underestimate sandy beaches this time of the year! Smallmouth bass have been very active, taking over the rocky reefs that the walleyes called home all spring. Live and artificial baits both are working. Walleye action has been okay, it's more of a night type bite, either trolling shad raps or lighted bobbers. Pike and panfish are still pretty active in the bays! As always we would love to see you up here on Leech Lake. We have a few openings August 11-18 and September is just around the corner. It would be great to grab your friends and have a long weekend getaway!

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- Chris Kuduk's Guide Service - (320-630-1761)

Smallies are biting on Mille Lacs, starting to bite more in the shallows now, some out in the deep rocks too. Action has been great on tube jigs and crankbaits. Walleyes are biting in the mud, try pulling cranks, leeches, crawlers or a rig. During the evening hours, a bobber and a leech in the rocks is working very well! Platte, Sullivan, Shakopee, Knife and Anne are all producing a great panfish and a bass bite! Call Chris to book a guided trip, a launch trip or for up-to-the-minute fishing reports. Listen to Chris and Stan live for a weekly fishing report from 5-6 pm Saturdays on Outdoor Adventures on www.twincitiesnewstalk.com (iheart Radio)! Or listen to their podcast!

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

8-7- Minnetonka, Independence, Medicine and Sarah are producing some bass and sunnies at the deep weedlines. Northern pike are also biting on area lakes, especially on Sarah and Medicine lakes. Muskie reports are starting to pick up. Stop in or call us for details!

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- Turk Gierke, Croixsippi Guide Service


August is a time of truly mixed bag fishing on the St. Croix River.

Smallmouth bass on the river can be a very good timing catching as they tend to group up. Sonja holds up a fish that slammed her pole after she put it down for a minute. Very good fight.
Smallmouth bass on the river can be a very good time catching – as they tend to group up. Often if you get one there more down there.  Sonja holds up a fish that slammed her pole after she put it down for a minute. Very good fight.Back at the dock. Sonja got the best fish of her groups morning trip, She was lucky enough to have her Grandpa Ron take her and her brother Owen out fishing.
Back at the dock. Sonja caught all the best fish of her groups morning trip, She was lucky enough to have her Grandpa Ron take her and her brother Owen out fishing.

So fact are facts and walleyes are much hard to come by this week.  Between the last post and now the walleye bite was decent (had to work at it but pretty good) in my opinion.

Mid July 2018 walleyes from the St. Croix River
Mid July 2018 walleyes from the St. Croix River.

So I was speaking earlier to the mixed bag aspect of the river right now… so if you like to eat fish, you’ll need to keep some sunnies, white bass, saugers, and crappies to pad the fillet total as straight up walleye hauls are going to be much tougher.

August is one of the best weather months of the year for spending time on the water.  Mainly blue skies and light wind.

Smallmouth bass make the guide trips a good time.

Kevin and Kent (l-r) with a double! Bronze backs! I fish bass on light line and so I net them. I had Kents fish in the net as I netted Kevins. That added to the excitement.
Kevin and Kent (l-r) with a double! Bronze backs! I fish bass on light line and so I net them. I had Kents fish in the net as I netted Kevins. That added to the excitement.

Smallmouth love all kinds of soft plastic baits, buzz baits, and any lure a Largemouth will hit as long as its not too big and in a natural color scheme.

Micaiah with a high water smallie.
Micaiah with a high water smallie.Leland with his walleye out with his pal Micaiah. nice weather nice trip.
Leland with his walleye out with his pal Micaiah. nice weather nice trip.

Lately I’ve been fishing for as the customers call it “whatever bites”.  so I use lures for bass and bait for all the rest. Crawlers are always in my boat and fathead minnows are also worth the trip to buy.  If your looking just for walleye – spinners and Rapala crankbaits are always a good choice.  I’ve done better on spinners vs. slow death hooks this season.

St. Croix water level is 678.50 and falling, water temp was 78 degrees. This elevation is down nine feet in two weeks!

Have fun and enjoy the river!


Charlie Gierke

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- Smokey Hills Outdoor Store, Josh Severtson, www.smokeyhills.com
19143 US HWY 71 N, Park Rapids, MN (218-237-5099)

Smokey Hills

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- Steve's Bait    www.wheatonservice.com
Neighbor Steve, 912 Broadway, Wheaton, MN (320-563-1400, 320-563-1400)

Steve's Bait offers everything you need to be successful on Lake Traverse!! From the hot jig or plug, to the Best LIVE BAIT to be had within 75 miles!!! Pop, water and snacks will also be available! Lodging is also available at our Fishin' Hole Lodge, along with ice fishin packages. Good luck on the water!! Take a Kid Fishin! You can also check us out on Facebook!

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

The bite is still on for many species in Lake Waconia! Expect a strong sunfish bite on waxies and crawlers. Crappies have moved a little deeper. Fish them in the weeds in 8 to 16 feet of water with crappie minnows for good action in places like Keg’s, North and Center Reefs or on the north end of Coney Island. Walleye anglers have been catching some nice crappies occasionally on fatheads as well. As for the walleyes, we suggest fishing with fatheads and leeches off the deeper weedlines and drops such as Keg’s, North, Red’s and Anderson’s Reef as well as the east end of Coney Island. For muskies, big spinners have been a common choice in 12 to 16 feet of water. Bass action has been very good. We’ve had a wide range of sizes being caught both shallow and deeper. Different angling styles have worked. Soft plastics have been good in less than 8 feet of water, while spinnerbaits and jigs have produced some nice ones in the weeds on the reefs. We continue to have some decent reports of northern pike being caught. Many times they are caught while fishing bass or walleye. We look forward to seeing you! Good luck fishing!

Our Pontoon and Fishing Boat Rental Season is now in full swing! We have 3 pontoons that hold up to 9 adults each and 1 that holds 12 adults. We rent 2 fishing boats with 15 hp motors that hold up to 4 people each and 1 fishing boat with a 9.9 hp motor that holds 3 people. For more information, click on this link… http://intownemarina.com/Pontoon&BoatRental.htm
If you are interested in reserving a pontoon or fishing boat, please call (952) 442-2096. Hours are Saturday and Sunday from 6:30 am to 8:30 pm, and on Monday thru Friday from 7:30 am to 8:30 pm.

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

8-8-Winnie walleyes are giving anglers a chance at catching larger fish and keepers as well. Leeches and rigs seem to be the best choice with a big population of small perch on many of the off shore structures. Crawlers have also been working good as well, but leeches seem to be the better choice of late. Bottom bouncers and spinners have also been good for walleyes with leeches and crawlers. The humps off shore of Highbanks have been good places to start. Keep moving until you find active fish. Northern pike have been active as well and the south shore cabbage beds and the weeds north of Raven;s Point to Mallard have also been giving up nice pike. Perch fishing has been a bit slower and sorting will give you a nice mess of fish to have in your cooler. Fish the rock piles and deeper weeds for nicer fish.

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- Fishin' With Frisch Pro Guide Service - www.fishingthemidwest.com
Mike Frisch

8-6-Mid-summer walleyes are being caught in Mary, Reno, Ida, Big Chippewa and the Le Homme Dieu chain, with the early morning and evening bite being the best.   Various live bait snells and spinners tipped with leeches and crawlers in 18-38 foot of water (depending on the lake) are producing fish. Staying on the move looking for active fish has been most productive.  
Bass fishing on the deep weedline is still very good on many area lakes.  A jig and plastic worm combination, the classic "jig-worm" set-up, is producing very good fish numbers. 

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Outdoor Calendar

State Record Fish

Minnesota Fish Tales Archive

Computerized 2018 by Vektor TM

Tables indicate peak fish and game feeding and migration times. Major periods can bracket the peak by an hour before-hour after. Minor peaks- 1/2 hour before and after.Adjusted for daylight savings time.

1 03:52 09:07 10:07 03:22
2 10:07 04:37 03:52 10:37
3 11:37 05:37 04:37 11:22
4 - - 06:52 01:52 12:07
5 - - 08:07 07:52 03:52
6 01:07 09:07 09:37 04:52
7 02:22 10:07 10:37 05:37
8 03:37 10:52 11:22 06:22
9 04:37 11:52 12:07 06:52
10 - - 05:22 07:37 12:37
11 12:52 06:22 08:07 01:22
12 01:37 07:07 08:37 01:52
13 02:22 07:52 09:07 02:37
14 03:07 08:52 09:37 03:07
15 09:52 03:52 10:07 03:52
16 10:52 04:52 04:22 10:37
17 - - 06:07 12:52 11:22
18 - - 07:37 03:37 12:07
19 - - 08:52 08:37 05:07
20 01:22 09:37 10:07 05:37
21 02:37 10:22 10:52 06:07
22 03:37 11:07 11:22 06:22
23 04:22 11:37 11:52 06:52
24 - - 05:07 07:07 12:07
25 - - 05:37 07:22 12:37
26 12:52 06:22 07:52 01:07
27 01:22 06:52 08:07 01:22
28 01:52 07:37 08:22 01:52
29 08:22 02:37 08:52 02:22
30 09:07 03:07 02:52 09:07
31 10:07 03:52 03:22 09:37

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