Minnesota Fish Tales Fishing Report
The Most In-Depth Statewide Fishing Report in Minnesota!
Fish Tales Archive
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- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Leisure Outdoor Adventures - www.leisureoutdooradventures.com
Jason Freed, Toby Kvalevog, Jeff Andersen (1-855-LOA-HOOK or 1-855-562-4665)
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.
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 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.
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
- 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.
- 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.
- 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)
Fishing report 6/18/17
Walleye fishing remains good throughout the area, with a vast majority of "eyes" coming from less than ten feet of water. This may be in part due to the insect hatches of late, as anglers examining the stomach contents of their catches and finding mostly semi-digested insects in them. Mayflies are begining to hatch and that will account for a lot of the bugs in the fish. Slow crawled leeches or crawlers just inched along the bottom seem to be working well early and late in the day, while a floating jig head can be used during late mornings and early afternoon. Some folks are also having success trolling shallow diving crank baits along transitions or weed edges.
Smallmouth bass are on the beds in many lakes and can be caught with either soft baits such as crawfish imitations or swim baits and tubes worked along the shorelines in less than five feet of water. A few have been lucky to catch some more aggressive bass with top water baits such as poppers or frogs.
Pike have readily been smacking spinner baits and small shallow diving crank baits worked along breaks and weed edges. Some anglers are just sitting back and relaxing while live suckers do the work for them.
A few lake trout have been reported from Burntside Lake as anglers troll spoons or crank baits down about forty feet in the water column. If you don't have downriggers, you can still achieve these depths with diving planers such as Dipsy Divers, Slide Divers, or a large egg sinker in line with your lures.
- 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!
Swanson's Bait & Tackle - www.swansonsbait.com
Caleb Garoutte, Hwy 371 on the north end of Hackensack (218-675-6176)
Ice conditions vary by lake but most lakes are between 12" to 22". Leech Lake is seeing 16" to 22" on the main lake with vehicle traffic on most the lake. The bite has slowed due to colder temps but has still been consistent! Most walleyes are being caught in the 18' to 20' range. Dead sticking a shiner has been producing as well as rattling spoons such as the Buckshot or BB Ratttler. Walker bay has been producing off the shoreline breaks as well as the deeper humps. The pike bite has been strong with most anglers going with a sucker minnow on a tip-up. The panfish bite has been strong with good numbers being reported! Small jigs such as the Bro Bug tipped with a wax worm or maggie seem to be the ticket! Stay warm and be safe!
- 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)
Crazy weather doesn't keep anglers from catching fish and having a great time!
We have had our share of everything this past week but fishing remains stable and everyone is having a great time on the lake! The unpredictable north land weather has a few scratching their head wondering where to go next but the key to success is adapting to the weather conditions that present itself, especially the wind.
Water temps took a dive into the mid 60's with the latest cold, rainy weather pattern. Mayfly larvae are just starting to show up so shallow soft bottom structure is still the go to for walleye and sauger with a better balance of both in the live well. A few reports of fish showing up on the reefs but not in great numbers yet. Won’t be long though.
Minnows are still turning fish but leeches seem to have taken over as the bait of choice and bottom bouncers with spinners have been doing great as of late triggering active fish. It's a great time to try moving a little faster to cover ground and spinners are perfect for this approach.
As usual, northern and small mouth are an easy target casting shorelines and shallow bays with emerging weeds.
Activities are in full swing here in the park. Bald eagle chicks are a frequent sight now being fed by their parents and our first ducklings have been seen in the harbor. Seems late this year.
We all hope everyone is having a great start to the summer and look forward to seeing you soon!
Thank you, Jason Cooper for your report!
Crabby Phil & Ellen Hart
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)
Overall, a great week of fishing. High winds and storms early to the middle of last week made fishing difficult at times. Dirty water from the winds didn't help fishing but the storms have passed fishing has resumed to its previous level, great! Depending on the wind pulling spinners is effective but many fish still being caught with a jig and shiner or jig and a leech. Key depths between 11-18' or 30-31' of water. In 5-11 feet along shorelines the shiner spawn is on and the walleyes and saugers are chowing down. Good number of large pike mixed in with walleyes right now.
Walleyes in the Rainy River with a good morning bite. Trolling cranks a good idea to cover a large portion of water. Multi-species bag often the result. Smallmouth bass are feeding strong in bays, feeder streams, rock, under docks, and weed edges. Sturgeon fishing opens again July 1st.
Up at the NW Angle, walleye fishing excellent on wind blown shore lines. Little Oak, Oak, Flag Island flats all holding fish. 18-26' a consistent depth with some shallow fish in 4-14'. Harnesses with a bottom bouncers or a jig and minnow. Some pulling cranks as well in the shallows. Colors as always should include gold, pink, glow colors and bright colors. Muskie season is now open with some nice fish being boated. The water temps dropped due to some storms thus locations of fish has varied. Lodging, charters and guides are available at www.LakeoftheWoodsMN.com/Lodging.
- Anderson's Resorts - www.andersonsleech-lake.com
Tim, (1-800-516-0077) email@example.com (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!
- 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 on fire! One of the better openers in years! Strong smallmouth bite. We are looking to a banner year on Mille Lacs. Crappies biting on Mille Lacs in the south end channels and bays. Ann, Knife, Shakopee, Platte, Sullivan are producing a great panfish bite, also some walleyes and pike. The launches are ready, give Chris a call for a small or large boat trip! Listen to Outdoor Adventures on www.twincitiesnewstalk.com (iheart Radio) for reports from Chris! Call anytime for up-to-the-minute reports!
- 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.
MISSISSIPPI - ST. CROIX
- Turk Gierke, Croixsippi Guide Service
May 30, 2017 St. Croix River Walleye Fishing
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!
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.
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”. 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
- 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/
- 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!
Mase's In Towne Marine - www.intownemarina.com
Cindy, corner of Lake and Elm (952-442-2096)
Our hours are now Sunday thru Friday from 7:30 am until 8:30 pm and on Saturday from 6:30 am until 8:30 pm. The past 2 weeks we’ve had water temps fluctuate from 69 degrees on Mother’s Day to 55 degrees last Sunday. It’s back on the climb, as today’s surface water temp hit 64 degrees. That should help reignite the sunfish, crappie and bass bite on Lake Waconia. Expect to have good success in the shallows like the reeds on the northwest side of the lake, the Carp Trap (Peterson’s Creek) and by the Rock Dock.
Walleyes would be worth trying on the reefs such as Keg’s Reef, Center Reef, Cemetery Reef or North Reef. Fishing around 12 to 18 feet of water with leeches or fatheads is most popular. However, crawlers work well too in early summer pattern fishing. If you’re a slip bobber fisherman, we still have shiners! We won’t have them for long, so get them while you can.
The pike bite has been good so far this spring. Trolling with spoons or diving cranks has worked. It never hurts to bobber fish with a sucker minnow, which along with pike can also produce some big bass. Speaking of bass, Saturday is the official Bass Opener, so you can now keep them if you’d like.
We are in full boat rental season! We have fishing boats that accommodate 3 to 4 people, as well as pontoon boats that accommodate up to 9 adults for 3 of our 20 foot pontoons and up to 12 people for our 24 foot pontoon. Call (952) 442-2096 to reserve!
- Walleye Visions - www.mnfishingconnections.com
Tom Neustrom, 21622 Airport Rd, Grand Rapids, firstname.lastname@example.org, (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.