Tuesday, January 31st, 2023
Tuesday, January 31st, 2023

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Duck hunting slows as walleye and panfish action picks up

BIG SIX

LAKE MILLE LACS

East – Walleye action during the day has slowed over the past
week. The night bite continues to be very good with crankbaits or
slip bobbers and leeches on the shallow rock piles and reefs.
Limits of jumbo perch are being taken on a jig and minnow
combination in 12 feet of water throughout Isle Bay. The canal near
Malone Island started producing big crappies this week, but muskie
reports continue to be limited.

Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811 www.johnsonsportside.com

West – Leeches and slip bobbers continue to turn numbers of
walleyes after dark in the deep water off Curley’s Flat and
Seguchie Flat. Crankbaits are producing fish at night on shoreline
breaks and shallow weedlines. The best bet during midday hours is a
spinner rig and minnow on top of the flats in 22 feet of water.
Muskie action on the east end is limited, but there have been some
better reports from the south side of the lake.

Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430

Tutt’s Bait & Tackle (320) 692-4341

LAKE OF THE WOODS

Walleyes and slab crappies are active in 24 feet of water at the
Northwest Angle. Jig fishing is most productive for walleyes along
the south shore in 15 to 20 feet of water. Morris Point Gap and
Four Mile Bay have produced limits of fish and numbers of walleyes
over 27 inches. The best reports for walleyes on the Rainy River
have come from Wheeler’s Point to Baudette in 26 feet of
water.

Lake of the Woods Tourism (800) 382-FISH

LEECH LAKE

Work the deep break off Cedar Point with a jig and minnow in 25
to 35 feet of water for a few walleyes during the day. The deep
humps in Walker Bay and many main lake points continue to provide
an occasional walleye during lowlight periods of the day. The rocks
are producing a few muskies on crankbaits, but jumbo perch remain
scarce. If you’re looking for bluegills, Shingobee Bay might be you
best bet in 15 feet of water.

Walker Bait Company (218) 547-2248

LAKE MINNETONKA

Several muskies between 48 and 52 inches were caught this week.
Topwater baits are working best on top of the milfoil flats, while
big blade baits have turned fish on the deep weed edges. Bass can
be had on spinnerbaits in shallow water and you should find
crappies over 15 to 18 feet of water in Black Lake and the North
Arm. Look for walleyes during lowlight periods of the day to hit
Shad Raps in the channels. You’ll hook walleyes during the day on
chubs in 28 to 32 feet of water in Brown’s Bay and Excelsior Bay.
Sucker minnows are producing northern pike in the channels and
sunfish are being found along the 10- to 12-foot weed edges.

Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227

RAINY LAKE

The Three Sisters area in Sand Bay is producing walleyes in 25
to 30 feet of water. Around Blueberry Island, a jig and minnow is a
safe bet for walleyes in 40 to 45 feet of water. The bigger
northern pike have started hitting crankbaits on top of the reefs.
Mallards, ringnecks, and some bluebills have provided good duck
hunting opportunities. Grouse hunters also are seeing more birds
than they have in several years.

Loon’s Nest (218) 286-5850

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

Walleyes, northern pike, and jumbo perch are being taken in the
same areas with a jig and minnow combination. Most fish have been
caught in less than 12 feet of water, and as shallow as five feet
with a strong wind. Work the shoreline breaks, Raven’s Point,
Mallard Point, Sugar Point, Farley Creek, Little Stoney Point, and
the Highbanks area.

Pines Resort and Campground (218) 246-8546

Nodak Lodge (218) 665-2226

Twin Cities Metro

NORTHEAST METRO

Sucker minnows have produced big bass during midday hours at
Demonterville Lake on the 10- to 15-foot weeds. There are some
walleyes coming from Lake Phalen in 10 to 15 feet of water on jigs
and minnows and in the Prescott area of the St. Croix River,
despite high water. Minnows have been the ticket for walleyes and
northern pike on the shallow breaks of Silver Lake. Lake Jane and
Demonterville remain the area’s best option for panfish in 10 to 12
feet of water.

Blue Ribbon Bait and Tackle (651) 777-2421

SOUTHWEST METRO

Topwater jerkbaits have produced numbers of big bass in the
shallows of Lake Zumbra, Lake Auburn, and Lake Bavaria. Trolling
spoons or Mepps spinners on top of the 10-foot weeds has produced
northern pike at Pierson Lake. Look for sunfish in six of water and
crappies in 12 feet of water on Lake Parley. The north end of
Parley has kicked out a few walleyes in 10 feet of water, too. The
best muskie action is on the west side of Lake Waconia.

Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022

SOUTH METRO

Sucker minnows have produced muskies in 10 to 15 feet of water
at Lake Harriet. You’ll catch numbers of 12- to 14-inch walleyes on
Lake Calhoun in 10 to 20 feet of water. Most are being taken on
fathead minnows under bobbers.

Moore’s Bait and Tackle (612) 861-7412

Statewide

ALEXANDRIA AREA

A vertically presented jig and fathead minnow is producing
walleyes in 30 to 50 feet of water on lakes like Ida, Miltona, and
Le Homme Dieu. Largemouth bass are being caught with crankbaits on
the deep weeds that remain at Lake Ida, Lake Carlos, and Lake Le
Homme Dieu. Look to Lobster Lake and Miltona for muskies throughout
the day. There are quite a few geese in the area, but duck numbers
are minimal.

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

ANNANDALE AREA

There’s some walleye action during the evening hours with
minnows in 14 to 20 feet of water on Cedar Lake and Lake Sylvia.
Crankbaits also will produce fish on these lakes in shallow water
after dark. On Clearwater Lake, a jig and minnow combination is a
safe bet for walleyes in nine to 16 feet of water. Pleasant Lake,
Lake John, Clearwater, and Granite Lake are giving up a few
crappies and northern pike in 14 feet of water. Largemouth bass are
hitting spinnerbaits in less than 10 feet of water on most lakes. A
few ducks continue to be shot and there are plenty of geese in the
area. Bow hunters have taken several nice bucks and a lot of
management tags continue to be filled.

Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297

BATTLE LAKE

There’s a good walleye bite during the day on Otter Tail Lake in
14 to 16 feet of water with shiner minnows. Shad Raps also produce
fish after dark in shallow water. On West Battle Lake, shiner
minnows are producing walleyes in 24 feet and at Stalker Lake
minnows started turning walleyes in 18 feet of water. Bass and
panfish reports have been minimal, mainly due to the increase in
walleye activity. Waterfowl hunters continue to shoot more geese
than ducks in the area.

Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596

BEMIDJI AREA

The majority of walleyes have been taken on spinners or live
bait rigs tipped with fathead minnows. Work adjacent to main lake
structure in 25 feet of water on Big Lake and Lake Bemidji.
Northern pike and an occasional muskie can be caught on lakes like
Plantagenet and Bemidji. Look for scattered and suspended panfish
over deep water on Turtle River Lake and Lake Beltrami. Waterfowl
hunting is decent with ring necks, mallards, and geese in most
bags.

Kobilka’s Sporting Goods (218) 751-6000

BLACKDUCK LAKE

Jerkbaits have produced numbers of good-sized pike in the
Tamarack River area of Upper Red Lake. Blackduck Lake is providing
the best walleye action. Minnows are the primary bait being used in
10 to 14 feet of water. Scattered reports of suspended crappies are
coming from 18 to 20 feet of water on lakes such as South Turtle,
Rabideau, and Gilstead. Grouse hunters seem pleasantly surprised
with the number of birds they’re seeing and duck hunting has been
much better than last year by most accounts.

Timberline Sport and Tackle (218) 835-4636

BRAINERD/NISSWA

The fall walleye bite is going strong with rainbow minnows and
golden shiners in 16 to 34 feet of water. Gull Lake continues to
provide the best action, with North Long Lake and Pelican Lake
kicking out their share of walleyes as well. Crappies are biting in
15 to 20 feet of water on Lake Hubert and North Long during midday
hours.

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

CASS LAKE AREA

Walleyes continue to be caught in 55 to 70 feet of water during
the day and in 20 to 25 feet of water during lowlight periods on
Cass Lake. Turtle River Bar, Windego Bar, and Buck’s Bar have
produced the most fish. LeRoy’s Bar in Pike Bay Lake also has
provided steady walleye activity in 55 feet of water. Jumbo perch
are being caught on black jigs and minnows in the five- to
seven-foot bulrushes of Cass, and muskie action has been slow.
Largemouth bass action is good with spinnerbaits on Lake Thirteen
and Midge Lake.

Sunset Cove Resort (800) 279-4831

CHISAGO AREA

Kroon Lake is providing numbers of crappies in 10 to 12 feet of
water. Look for steady walleye action with shallow-running Shad
Raps in eight feet of water on North Center Lake and South Center
Lake. The bite is best during lowlight periods. Green Lake is
producing a few walleyes and northern pike in 12 feet of water
during the afternoon. Bow hunters are doing well, but duck numbers
remain low.

Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334

CROSBY AREA

Redtails and rainbow minnows are providing consistent walleye
action on Rabbit Lake and Pelican Lake in 22 to 28 feet of water.
Limits of trout are being caught on Rapalas worked near the surface
at the Portsmouth and Pennington pits. Panfish can be had in 12 to
15 feet of water on Serpent Lake and Clinker Lake. Sucker minnows
continue to be the best option for northern pike in 12 feet of
water on Mitchell Lake and Upper Mission Lake. Duck hunters are
starting to see a few bluebills on the bigger bodies of
water.

Oars ‘n Mine Bait and Tackle (218) 546-6912

DETROIT LAKES

Pelican Lake and Big Detroit Lake are giving up muskies in 12 to
14 feet of water. Walleye activity is getting better each day on
lakes like Big Toad, Cotton, Cormorant, Melissa, Strawberry, White
Earth, and Lizzie. Fishing the sharp, shoreline breaks or remaining
weed edges with a jig and minnow is working best. Grouse numbers
are better than most hunters anticipated, and a few ducks have
moved into the area.

Dick Beardsley’s Guide Service www.fishingscene.com

DULUTH AREA

Walleyes are hitting minnows in 15 feet of water on Island Lake.
Kamloops started showing up along the north shore of Lake Superior.
The best reports are coming a half-mile out with stick baits or
spoons near the surface. Archery hunters continue to harvest a lot
of deer in the special city hunt.

Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094

EAST-CENTRAL MINN

Blue Lake is producing crappies in 17 feet of water. You’ll hook
walleyes on Blue Lake in 12 feet of water with fathead minnows and
jigs. Look to Green Lake for walleyes and crappies in 12 to 17 feet
of water during the afternoon and evening hours. Duck reports have
been favorable and there are quite a few geese in the area as
well.

Tails and Trails Sport Shop (763) 856-3985

FAIRMONT AREA

Crappie action is going strong on Hall Lake, Budd Lake, and Lake
Sissiton in four feet of water. Hall Lake and Budd Lake are kicking
out walleyes in 10 feet of water on fathead minnows. Waxworms and
earthworms are providing steady bluegill activity in the four-foot
channels of lakes such as Sissiton and Budd. Waterfowl reports have
been limited, but there have been some nice bucks registered Master
Sport and Bait.

Master Sport and Bait (507) 235-5225

FARIBAULT AREA

The channels on Cannon Lake are producing walleyes and jumbo
perch during lowlight periods. A jig and fathead minnow is working
well for walleyes in 10 feet of water on Roberds Lake, which also
is the area’s best bet for bluegills in shallow water. Bucktails
and topwater baits are working best for muskie anglers and the bite
has been good throughout the area. Duck numbers are down, but geese
are plentiful in the area.

Lake’s Bait and Tackle (507) 334-2768

GRAND RAPIDS AREA

Trout Lake is providing numbers of eating-sized walleyes in 12
to 16 feet of water. There’s an evening walleye bite with
crankbaits or a jig and minnow on Lake Wabana in six to 12 feet of
water. On Big Cutfoot Sioux Lake, minnows are producing walleyes in
nine to 15 feet of water. Look for crappies on Big Cutfoot in 20 to
24 feet and on Little Cutfoot Sioux Lake in 11 feet of water. Large
minnows are turning quite a few good-sized northern pike on Lake
Pokegama in 20 to 22 feet of water. Duck numbers have dropped over
the past week, while grouse hunting continues to improve.

Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281

Rapids Tackle (218) 326-9838

HACKENSACK AREA

Woman Lake started producing walleyes on crawlers in 12 feet of
water. A jig and minnow is a safe bet for walleyes on Birch Lake
and Pleasant Lake in 25 feet of water. Look for suspended crappies
on most lakes over 15 feet of water. Duck hunting reports have been
favorable and grouse numbers appear better than last year. Archery
hunters have done very well bringing in a lot of management deer
and several nice bucks as well.

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

HUTCHINSON

Walleyes are biting on Belle Lake in eight feet of water early
and late in the day. Minnows are producing a few walleyes in 10
feet of water on Big Swan Lake and Collinwood Lake. Crankbaits have
been the ticket for walleyes after dark on Stella Lake in shallow
water.

The Outpost (320) 587-8177

LAKE KABETOGAMA

Walleye anglers are putting a few fish in the boat with jigs and
minnows in 30-plus feet of water. Crappies remain tight-lipped in
the Ash River entrance of Kabetogama and east end of Namakan Lake.
Fish the wind-driven shorelines and weedy bays with sucker minnows
or crankbaits for northern pike. Grouse hunting reports have been
favorable and improving each week as more leaves fall.

Gateway Store (218) 875-2121

www.gatewaygeneral.com

LAKE OSAKIS

Shiner minnows are the best bet for walleyes on the sharp breaks
in Coonhaven Bay. Crow Point, Miller Point, and the Half Mile Bar
have kicked out a few walleyes as well. Crappies have been
suspending over 60 feet of water off Lindberg Point, while a few
sunfish can be had off Caughren’s Point in 20 feet of water. Duck
hunters have been numerous on the lake, though very few birds have
been shot. There are some “better than expected” grouse numbers in
the area.

Fisherman’s Corner (320) 859-2181

LAKE VERMILION

The west end of Vermilion appears to be turning over. That means
you’ll find walleyes scattered shallow and deep as this process
continues. Once the lake completely turns over expect a more
consistent pattern to take shape. Trolling large crankbaits in the
big bays has produced a few muskies. This presentation has been
more productive for big northern pike. Ducks are scarce, but
archery hunters are seeing plenty of deer. The majority of leaves
are down, which should improve grouse hunting as well.

Lake Vermilion Trading Company (218) 666-6052

lakevermiliontradingco.com

MANKATO AREA

Work the rock-covered shorelines of Loon Lake and Crystal Lake
for walleyes with a jig and minnow. The Grassy Island area of Lake
Washington is holding active walleyes. Sunfish are an easy catch
with waxworms in 11 to 15 feet of water on Roemhildts Lake and off
Third Point on Washington.

The Bobber Shop (507) 625-8228

McGREGOR AREA

Crappies can be had with minnows on Big Sandy Lake in 15 feet of
water. Largemouth bass are an easy catch in shallow water with
topwater baits on Lake Minnewawa. Northern pike are hitting minnows
on most lakes in 12 to 14 feet of water. Look for walleyes on the
Big Sandy Flowage and Prairie River. Duck hunters continue to do
well.

Willey’s Sport Shop (218) 426-3382

PARK RAPIDS AREA

Fish Hook Lake is kicking out walleyes in 21 feet of water on a
jig and minnow. Walleyes also will bite minnows in 14 to 21 feet on
Potato Lake, Island Lake, and Long Lake. Northern pike are active
on Big Mantrap Lake and Fish Hook Lake in 10 to 12 feet of water.
Largemouth bass are hitting Rattle Traps throughout the area in 14
feet of water. Archery hunters brought in a lot of management deer
this week. Grouse hunting has been better than expected and a limit
of ducks isn’t out of the question.

Delaney’s (218) 732-4281

ST. CLOUD AREA

Fathead minnows are turning walleyes in 12 to 22 feet of water
on Horseshoe Lake, Rice Lake, and East Lake. Many anglers fishing
off their docks on Lake Koronis are catching walleyes after dark on
Shad Raps. Sunfish activity has been good in less than 10 feet of
water on lakes such as Becker, Big Fish, Schneider, Long, Grand,
and Pearl. Crappies are suspending over 20 feet of water on most
lakes. Duck hunters are finding pockets of birds and there are a
lot of geese in the area. Archery hunters have experienced a good
season and report increased deer movement this week.

Corky’s Gas & Bait (320) 251-1567

SAUK CENTRE AREA

Walleye activity has picked up on Big Birch Lake and Little
Birch Lake in 10 to 25 feet of water. Sauk Lake can be counted on
for walleyes in 12 to 16 feet of water. Shiner minnows or
medium-sized chubs have worked best. Sunfish are biting well on the
north end of Sauk Lake in nine feet of water. Look for suspended
crappies over 25 to 30 feet of water in Red Barn Bay on Sauk
Lake.

Fletcher’s Bait (320) 352-2155

STARBUCK AREA

A jig and minnow is producing walleyes on the north and south
side points of Lake Minnewaska in 16 to 18 feet of water. The bar
in front of the high school has provided steady walleye action.
Floating Rapalas are turning walleyes after dark on the north side
of Lake Reno. Anglers fishing close to shore on Lake Emily are
catching walleyes on Shad Raps. Long Lake also is a safe bet for
walleyes with a jig and minnow or Shad Rap.

Minnewaska Bait and Tackle (320) 239-2239

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