The summer’s heat is bringing on a fierce muskie bite

BIG SIX

LAKE MILLE LACS

East – There’s been some improved midday action on the mud
flats with deep-diving crankbaits. Slip bobbers and leeches
continue to produce walleyes during the day on the 20-foot rocks as
well. After the sun sets, work the edges of the flats or shallow
rock piles with bobbers and leeches. Smallmouth bass are feeding on
the rocks and mouths of most sandy bays. Muskie action has
improved, although follows are more common than bites.

Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811

www.johnsonsportside.com

West – Spinner rigs tipped with crawlers or rainbow
minnows have produced walleyes during the day from the top, down to
the edges, of the mud flats. Slip bobbers and leeches remain the
best bet during the evening hours in 28 to 34 feet of water. A few
more perch have been caught on the mud this week, and northern pike
remain active along the weed edges of St. Alban’s Bay. A few
muskies are being seen, while smallmouth bass are easy to catch off
the points and rock piles.

Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430

Tutt’s Bait & Tackle (320) 692-4341

LAKE OF THE WOODS

The sand points and and shoreline breaks along the south
shore are holding pods of walleyes in 24 to 26 feet of water. A
hammered gold spinner tipped with any live bait option is still
producing the majority of fish. Sucker minnows or crankbaits have
provided steady northern pike action on the weed edges in Bostic
Bay and Zippel Bay. At the Northwest Angle, spinners and crawlers
have been the ticket for walleyes near Garden Island, Knight
Island, and Bridge Island. The Baudette Airport area of the Rainy
River is still a safe bet for walleyes, northern pike, and
smallmouth bass.

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

LEECH LAKE

Bottom bouncers and spinners have been the best bets for
walleyes in the 20- to 30-foot troughs on the main lake during the
day. Slip bobbers and leeches have worked better during the evening
hours off Sand Point in nine to 12 feet of water. Muskie activity
has improved on top of the cabbage patches and breaks in Walker
Bay. Shingobee Bay and Steamboat Bay are kicking out bluegills in
eight to 10 feet of water.

Walker Bait Company (218) 547-2248

LAKE MINNETONKA

Walleye activity is limited to the evening hours along the
deep weed edges. These same weed edges will produce northern pike
on sucker minnows during the day. Sunfish have provided the most
consistent bite in six to 10 feet of water throughout the lake.
Look for crappies on top of the deep milfoil; muskies continue to
be seen — and have followed baits — near the weeds. They’re
chasing topwater presentations.

Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227

RAINY LAKE

Jig and minnows are producing walleyes in 22 feet of water
above the Reinier Bridge in Sand Bay. There’s a good leech bite in
the shallows of Lost Bay, Red Gut Bay, Saginaw Bay, and Cormorant
Bay. The North Arm is the best bet for smallmouth bass, and the
weedlines in Lost Bay have kicked out some nice northern pike. Look
for crappies to hit small minnows and jigs in eight to 10 feet of
water in Black Bay.

Loon’s Nest (218) 286-5850

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

The main lake bars have been the best bets for numbers of
walleyes. Live bait rigs tipped with crawlers or leeches are
turning the majority of fish in 18 to 23 feet of water. A jig and
minnow combo remains the best option during the evening hours off
Little Stoney Point in 10 feet of water. Raven’s Point is producing
some perch in 16 feet of water, as are the north-end humps in 22 to
26 feet. Northern pike are biting consistently throughout the
weeded areas of the lake.

Pines Resort and Campground (218) 246-8546

Nodak Lodge (218) 665-2226

TWIN CITIES METRO

NORTHEAST METRO

Northern pike are inhaling sucker minnows along the
weed edges of Beaver Lake, White Bear Lake, and Forest Lake. Look
for sunfish on Lake Peltier in eight to 10 feet of water and
hitting small leeches. Largemouth bass are biting throughout the
area, but walleyes have been slow. Big Marine Lake and
Demonterville Lake have produced the biggest bass, on plastics and
topwater presentations.

Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle (651)
777-2421

SOUTHWEST METRO

Look for suspended sunfish on the south end of Lake
Minnewashta over 24 feet of water. There’s an evening sunfish bite
in five feet of water to the right of the access on Lake Parley.
White topwater baits are producing numbers of largemouth bass
during low-light periods of the day on Pierson Lake, Lake Bavaria,
and the northeast end of Lake Zumbra. Red Cedar Point on
Minnewashta is a safe bet for northern pike with spinnerbaits,
although Pierson Lake is kicking out bigger pike in 14 to 16 feet
of water. The only crappie bite worth noting is taking place on the
south end of Lake Riley in six feet of water.

Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022

LAKE WACONIA

Work the deep weed edges off Kegg’s Reef, Anderson’s
Reef, and the Claybanks with crawlers and leeches for walleyes.
Anderson’s Reef is holding crappies in 12 to 14 feet of water, and
bass continue to be caught at an alarming pace throughout the
shallow and deep weeds. Muskie anglers are reporting a lot of
follows and a few caught fish off Center Reef, Reinke’s Reef, and
the swimming beach area.

Mases In Towne Marina (952)
442-2096

STATEWIDE

ALEXANDRIA AREA

The best walleye action has taken place during
low-light periods of the day. Leeches and nightcrawlers now are
providing the best bite along the deep weed edges of Lake Miltona,
Lake Le Homme Dieu, and Lake Ida. Tube jigs or small flies are
fooling sunfish and crappies in the 8- to 14-foot cabbage beds
throughout the Le Homme Dieu Chain. Bass are scattered but active
near docks, weed edges, and main lake flats on most fisheries.
Muskie anglers are seeing plenty of fish on Lake Miltona, but can’t
get most of them to eat.

Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle (320)
763-3255

ANNANDALE AREA

Work the 12- to 15-foot weed edges on
Clearwater Lake for sunfish, northern pike, and walleyes. Pleasant
Lake and Lake Augusta also are safe bets for sunfish in 10 to 12
feet of water. French Lake, Lake Sylvia, Sugar Lake, and Pleasant
are producing crappies on top of the deep weeds. Northern pike and
largemouth bass continue to hit on most lakes. Sugar Lake is worth
checking for muskies early and late in the day with topwater
presentations.

Little Jim’s Bait (320)
274-5297

BATTLE LAKE

Leeches have produced a few walleyes on Otter
Tail Lake and West Battle Lake in 20 to 30 feet of water. The weed
edges of West Battle are giving up an occasional muskie as well.
Small leeches are producing sunfish in 10 to 12 feet of water on
Blanche Lake, Star Lake, and Dead Lake. Small minnows will turn
crappies on these lakes as well. The local bass bite has been
excellent.

Ben’s Bait Shop (218)
864-5596

BLACKDUCK AREA

Leeches, crawlers, and crankbaits are turning
walleyes on Blackduck Lake in 14 to 20 feet of water. North Twin
Lake and South Twin Lake are the area’s best bets for bluegills in
eight to 12 feet of water. The breaks near the Tamarack River on
Upper Red Lake continue to produce quite a few big northern
pike.

Timberline Sports and Tackle (218)
835-4636

BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA

Walleyes are hitting leeches, nightcrawlers,
and redtails in 12 to 22 feet of water. Look for more numbers on
Gull Lake, but Pelican Lake and North Long Lake are producing
bigger fish. Largemouth bass and panfish have moved from the
shallows and are setting up along the 10- to 12-foot weed edges on
most lakes.

S & W Bait & Tackle (218)
829-7010

CHISAGO AREA

Look for suspended crappies over 18 to 25 feet
of water on lakes such as Chisago, South Lindstrom, North Center,
and South Center. Look for walleyes on these same lakes in 12 to 18
feet of water, but the key now is to work transition areas that
turn from hard to soft bottom. Minnows will produce northern pike
on Sunrise Lake in 12 to 16 feet of water.

Frankie’s Bait (651)
257-6334

DETROIT LAKES

Catching walleyes is not impossible, but it
does involve more work. Spinner rigs and crawlers are working best
on the deep weed edges out to about 30 feet on Round Lake, Lake
Sallie, Elbow Lake, Juggler Lake, Cotton Lake, Shell Lake, and
Island Lake. Bass fishing remains good during the morning and
evening hours on most lakes. Topwaters, tubes, and jigs are turning
bigger fish. Look for crappies and bluegills off the deep cabbage;
a large minnow and jig should produce northern pike along the
weeds.

Dick Beardsley’s Guide Service
www.fishingscene.com

DULUTH AREA

A significant mayfly hatch has slowed the
local walleye bite. The only fish caught now are coming during
low-light periods of the day on Fish Lake in 14 to 16 feet of water
and on Island Lake in 30 feet. The weedlines of Island lake are
producing northern pike on sucker minnows. Muskie action has picked
up on the St. Louis River on bucktails and topwater presentations.
Most anglers on Lake Superior are now catching lake trout and
salmon near the surface about 12 miles out from shore. Look for
bigger pods of fish to be suspended over 100 to 120 feet of
water.

Chalstrom’s Bait (218)
726-0094

EAST-CENTRAL MINN

Water levels have receded on the Rum River and
there have been some walleyes caught on crankbaits and jigs.
Crappies are biting near the island on Fremont Lake in seven to 11
feet of water. Bass and northern pike can be caught on most lakes,
while the reed beds on Green Lake and Blue Lake continue to provide
steady panfish action.

Tails and Trails Sport Shop (763)
856-3985

FAIRMONT AREA

Crappies have moved deeper, to 16 feet, but
remain active on Budd Lake and Hall Lake. Worms and small leeches
will provide steady sunfish action along the shorelines of Budd
Lake and Lake Sissiton. Walleye activity has slowed, but the
channel catfish bite has picked up on Hall and Amber Lake. There
have been some good-sized perch coming off Hall Lake, and bucktails
and Suicks are triggering muskies on Fox
Lake.

Master Sport and Bait (507)
235-5225

FARIBAULT AREA

Leeches and live bait rigs are producing a few
walleyes on French Lake in 22 to 24 feet of water. Countdown
Rapalas are a safe bet for walleyes during the evening hours in the
channels of Cannon Lake. Bluegill action remains strong on Lake
Mazaska, Shields Lake, and Cedar Lake. Spoon plugs are turning
northern pike along the weedlines of Mazaska, Shields, and Kelley
Dudley Lake. Plastics have been the ticket for largemouth bass in
the shallow weeds on Cedar Lake and Hunt Lake. The hot weather of
late has turned the muskie bite on in this area as
well.

Lake’s Bait and Tackle (507)
334-2768

GRAND RAPIDS AREA

Crappie action has improved in nine to 12 feet
of water on Sand Lake and the Bowstring River. The 15-foot weed
edges on Little Splithand Lake also are holding crappies. Look to
Lake Pokegama for walleyes in 20 to 22 feet of water, and the rock
bars are a safe bet for smallmouth bass. Numbers of smallmouth bass
are being caught with Rapalas on Trout Lake as well. Leeches and
crawlers are producing walleyes on Turtle Lake and North Star Lake
in 22 to 25 feet of water. The weed edges of Balsam Lake are
kicking out northern pike, while topwater baits have been the
ticket for muskies on Moose Lake.

Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218)
326-8281

Rapids Tackle (218)
326-9838

HACKENSACK AREA

Crawlers and leeches are producing walleyes on
Birch Lake in 18 to 22 feet of water. Trolling shallow-running
Rapalas after dark on Ten Mile Lake and Stoney Lake also has
produced walleyes. Crappies continue to be pulled from the shallows
of Birch and Pleasant, and there are some good-sized bass being
caught off the deep weeds of Big Bass
Lake.

Swanson’s Bait and Tackle (218)
675-6176

HUTCHINSON

Spinnerbaits, crankbaits, and jigs are
producing largemouth bass and northern pike on Lake Jennie. A few
walleyes have been caught at night on Shad Raps in six to eight
feet of water on Jennie as well. Look to Collinwood Lake for an
occasional walleye, and Lake Minnie Belle remains the best option
for sunfish.

The Outpost (320)
587-8177

LAKE KABETOGAMA

The majority of walleyes caught during the day
are coming from 18 to 28 feet of water. Evening hours are best
spent in the 8-foot weeds with a jig and minnow. Smallmouth bass
action is coming on strong. Pitching lures such as a Rebel
Crayfish, Heddon Torpedos, or Shad Raps against the rocks and rocky
shorelines has worked well. A few northern pike have been caught on
the outside weed edges on minnows or
stickbaits.

Gateway Store (218)
875-2121

www.gatewaygeneral.com

LAKE OSAKIS

Sunfish have moved to the weedlines and
started biting best in three to five feet of water. Town Bay, Three
Mile, Miller’s Bay, and the Outlet all have produced fish this
week. The only walleye bite to speak of takes place from 8 p.m. to
midnight each night on the bars. Northern pike and bass are an easy
catch in the weeds.

Fisherman’s Corner (320)
859-2181

LAKE VERMILION

Walleyes have transitioned to the rock reefs,
especially during the evening hours when a slip bobber and leech
rig is working. Crawlers are still working best in soft-bottom
areas that lie in 12 to 16 feet of water. Muskies are starting to
be seen in the rocks and weeds with a few being taken on topwater
baits. Tube jigs and Senkos are turning numbers of smallmouth bass
on the shallow, rock-covered shorelines.

Lake Vermilion Trading Company (218)
666-6052

lakevermiliontradingco.com

MANKATO AREA

Large sucker minnows are turning flathead
catfish on the Minnesota River. Jig and leech rigs are producing
walleyes in the 6-foot weeds of Lake Washington. Look for bluegills
to be active in Baker’s Bay on Lake Washington over eight to 12
feet of water. Work the weed edges of Lake Tetonka for walleyes
during the evening hours with live bait. Little Jefferson Lake is
worth noting for northern pike.

The Bobber Shop (507)
625-8228

PARK RAPIDS AREA

The west arm and rock piles on Potato Lake
started producing walleyes in 18 to 28 feet of water during
low-light periods of the day. Big Sand Lake continues to produce a
few walleyes in 32 feet of water, and a leech or crawler is now the
best option on both lakes. Sucker minnows have provided steady
northern pike action in 12 feet of water on Big Mantrap Lake. The
Crow Wing Chain is a safe bet for bluegills in 12 to 14 feet of
water, and bass seem to be biting on most lakes. Muskie anglers are
hooking a few fish on Big Mantrap Lake with shallow-running
crankbaits and topwater presentations.

Delaney’s (218)
732-4281

ST. CLOUD AREA

Walleyes have been tough to find with an
occasional fish coming off Lake Koronis at night in 10 to 12 feet
of water. Pearl Lake, Grand Lake, East Lake, and Horseshoe Lake are
providing sunfish, but most fish have been small. Bass continue to
bite on area lakes, and the Sauk River is a safe bet for
catfish.

Corky’s Gas & Bait (320)
251-1567

STARBUCK AREA

Shallow-running Shad Raps continue to fool
walleyes on Lake Emily. On Lake Minnewaska, crawlers and leeches
have produced walleyes in front of the high school and off the
points in 18 to 20 feet of water. There’s a decent night bite for
walleyes on the north side of Lake Reno; use minnows. Small leeches
and wax worms have provided steady sunfish action on Minnewaska in
14 to 20 feet of water. Look for bass to be hitting spinnerbaits
and plastics near docks and along established weed
edges.

Minnewaska Bait and Tackle (320)
239-2239

WILLMAR AREA

Diamond Lake is giving up walleyes on slip
bobbers and leeches in five to 10 feet of water. On lakes such as
Florida, Andrew, and Eagle, shallow-running crankbaits have
produced walleyes along the weed edges. Bass and northern pike
continue to be caught on most lakes, primarily in the weeds, while
12 to 14 feet of water is a safe bet for panfish on Nest Lake,
North Long Lake, and Lake Florida.

Brad’s 71 Bait and Sports (320)
235-4097

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