Minnesota Twin Cities Fishing Reports

Metro Area Fishing Report - April 25th, 2014

LAKE MINNETONKA

As of Tuesday morning, most small bays were ice-free, but three-quarters of the main lake remained covered with ice. A few crappies have been caught on tiny baits in the small, shallow bays with muddy bottoms although no big numbers of panfish are showing up.

Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227

ANNANDALE AREA

Ice conditions deteriorated quickly over the past week, and what’s left is black and floating and expected to be off this weekend or early next week. Start looking to those traditional channels and bays for crappies as soon as the water warms a bit. Turkey hunters have fared well and most have been pleasantly surprised with the number of birds they’re seeing.

Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297

NORTHEAST METRO

Ice is gone on most lakes and what’s left should be gone by the weekend. Anglers in boats have started catching crappies on the shallow weed flats of White Bear Lake with plastics or minnows. Boat harbors and shallow channels on the St. Croix River are producing crappies and white bass. Water levels have risen on the Mississippi River so walleye action is best in backwater or current break areas.

Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle                    (651) 777-2421

WEST METRO

The small lakes are open and most big lakes are expected to be ice-free by the weekend. Turkey hunting reports have been favorable and most hunters are saying the birds really got active as soon as the snow melted.

Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022

LAKE WACONIA

About one-third of the lake had ice on Tuesday, but it is expected to be out by this weekend. The marina will be opening soon for the season so check the website for hours and the exact date it will open. 

Mases In Towne Marina (952) 442-2096

CHISAGO AREA

The wind is shifting the ice that remains and it looks as though most lakes will be ice-free by this weekend or early next week. There has been a handful of turkeys registered and most hunters report seeing good numbers of active birds.

Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334

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North West Minnesota Fishing Reports

Northwest Minnesota Fishing Report - April 25th, 2014

ALEXANDRIA AREA

The bays and lagoons on many lakes are open, while the ice that remains on most main-lake areas looks black and should be gone by next week. A few anglers have started fishing from shore at those traditional spring crappie spots, but success has been limited. Turkey hunters have fared well during the first couple of seasons with most reporting active birds.
Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle       (320) 763-3255

BATTLE LAKE

Some small lakes and bays were open early this week and the ice that remained on the bigger lakes was black and moving. Any significant rain or wind this week should take care of what’s left. Turkey hunters are reporting mixed success. There seems to be areas with more birds than others but where those pockets of birds exist, success has been good and turkeys are active.
Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596

PARK RAPIDS AREA

The ice went out on many small lakes last weekend and the ice left on the rest of the lakes is expected to be gone within the next week. The only open-water action worth noting is taking place on the Straight River, where brown trout are hitting nightcrawlers on a consistent basis.
Delaney’s (218) 732-4281
Smokey Hills Outdoors (218) 237-8128

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North East Minnesota Fishing Reports

Northeast Minnesota Fishing Report - April 25th, 2014

DULUTH AREA

The rivers and streams have really started flowing and the shorelines are now open on all lakes. Main-lake ice remains, but it appears to be deteriorating fast so ice-out is ahead of last year’s pace. There is some shore fishing taking place for Kamloops and coho salmon along Lake Superior. Crawlers, Looper Bugs and waxworms, or spawn sacs are working best in the French River and Stony Point areas.
Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094

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North Central Minnesota Fishing Reports

North Central Minnesota Fishing Report - April 25th, 2014

LAKE MILLE LACS 

The shorelines have started to pull away and even though there’s still a lot of ice on the main lake, it’s black and deteriorating fast. Most flowage areas also have opened, allowing the moving water to open the lake even more in those areas. The feel as the lake looks this week is the ice should be gone by opening day.

Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811

Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430

LAKE OF THE WOODS

There was open water from Wheeler’s Point into Four Mile Bay on the Rainy River early this week and sturgeon reports have been favorable. Work the deep holes and current seams with frozen shiners or nightcrawlers on circle hooks. The last of the ice fishing for this season was taking place for northern pike at Morris Point, Swift Ditch, or Graceton Beach in four to 10 feet.

Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau (800) 382-FISH

LEECH LAKE

The shorelines have started to bust loose, but main-lake ice is not deteriorating as fast as expected. If the area receives rain this week as forecasted, the ice-out process would speed up. Depending on the weather, ice-out could happen within the next week to 10 days, or it could take a bit longer if it cools down or doesn’t rain.

Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505

Shriver’s Bait Company (218) 547-2250

RAINY LAKE

There’s still a lot of ice on the main lake, although the shorelines have started to open. Sturgeon action on the Rainy River has been best with crawlers in areas with deeper pockets of water or current breaks.

Loon’s Nest (218) 286-5850

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

There’s a lot of open water along the shorelines and the ice left on the main lake looks rotten, so with some rain or additional warm weather, the ice should go fast. The way it looked early this week, there should be no issues with ice by opening day.

Lake Winnie Resort Association

BEMIDJI AREA

The shorelines have started to give away, but ice continues to cover the main portion of all lakes. It is starting to turn black and with some rain, the feeling is that it will go out fast, likely within the next 10 days to two weeks on most lakes.

Taber’s Bait (218) 751-5781 

BLACKDUCK AREA

A handful of people were walking on select lakes early this week, but that will likely come to an end by the weekend with rain and wind in the forecast for mid-week.

Timberline Sports and Tackle

(218) 835-4636

BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA

The channels and some bays have opened and a few anglers have started working them for crappies with limited success. Most small lakes are expected to be ice-free by this weekend and the bigger lakes should be open by the first week of May.

S & W Bait & Guide Service/Nisswa Guide League      (218) 829-7010

EAST CENTRAL MN

Most lakes are expected to be open by this weekend so start looking to those traditional shallow areas for crappies. Turkey registrations are up from the first two seasons last year and most hunters have reported seeing a lot of birds.

Tales and Trails Sport Shop (763) 856-3985

Artie’s Bait (320) 839-2480 

GRAND RAPIDS AREA

Anglers continued to ice fish many lakes early this week, but the weather could change those options by the weekend. Some shorelines have started to open, but if you can get on the ice, there’s still plenty of it so it’s probably best to call ahead going into this weekend. 

Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281

ST. CLOUD/EDEN VALLEY AREA

The ice is just about off most lakes and a few crappies and sunfish have starting showing up around the shallow bridges and culvert areas. Turkey hunting has gone very well during the first two seasons with several heavy toms registered and plenty of turkey activity reported throughout the area.

Mike’s Bait and Tackle (320) 453-2248

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South Central Minnesota Fishing Reports

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South East Minnesota Fishing Reports

Southeast Minnesota Fishing Report - April 25th, 2014

FARIBAULT AREA

The ice has been gone for a week, but the panfish bite has been slow developing. The only report worth noting is coming off Shields Lake, where a few sunfish are biting in six to eight feet. Turkey reports have been very good – it seems as though everyone with a tag has shot their bird.

Nagel’s Live Bait (507) 334-8341

RED WING AREA

The walleye spawn is at its peak on the Mississippi River this week and that seems to have slowed the bite. The fish being caught have been big and in less than five feet of water from Lake Pepin up to the dam. Sauger action has been more consistent on the 18- to 20-foot current breaks with bright-colored jigs tipped with minnows or plastics.

Four Seasons Sports (651) 388-4334

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South West Minnesota Fishing Reports

Southwest Minnesota Fishing Report - April 25th, 2014

FAIRMONT AREA

Anglers fishing from shore on Lake Sissiton are catching crappies during the evening hours on minnows. Budd Lake started kicking out bluegills in four to six feet and nightcrawlers are producing catfish at Amber Lake.

Sommer Outdoors (507) 235-5225

MANKATO AREA

Crappie action has picked up with minnows or small plastics at the sawmill area of Jefferson Lake in three feet. Crappies also can be had at the Buckmaster Bridge on Madison Lake in shallow water and sunfish have not shown up in the shallows. Most turkey hunting reports have been favorable with plenty of birds being seen throughout the area.

The Bobber Shop (507) 625-8228

ORTONVILLE AREA

Opening day of the border-waters walleye season was slow on Big Stone Lake, but since then the bite has improved slightly each day and the majority of fish anglers encounter continue to be males. A jig and minnow is working best along the shorelines in two to four feet from Mallard Point and Hartford Beach further up the north end of the lake.

STARBUCK AREA

The Starbuck Marina and Fish Hatchery Bay on Lake Minnewaska are open and producing crappies on minnows or waxworms under bobbers. Pelican Lake also started giving up crappies near the boat access, while Pocket Lake is producing crappies along County Road 4. 

Minnewaska Bait and Tackle (320) 239-2239

WATERVILLE AREA

The lagoons on Lake Tetonka are starting to produce a few crappies on minnows or plastics. Anglers fishing from shore at German Lake also are catching a few crappies and bullheads.

Axel’s Tackle Box (507) 362-4444

WILLMAR AREA

The ice has deteriorated fast over the past week and with any amount of rain or warm weather most lakes should be open by this weekend. Look to the shallow bays and shorelines for crappies as soon as the water warms a few degrees.

Brad’s 71 Bait and Sports

(320) 235-4097

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