Crappies and sunfish being caught despite cool water

Big Six

LAKE_MILLE LACS

Anglers have just started fishing the bays and boat harbors for
crappies. A few have been caught along with some perch, but the
bite hasn’t been real consistent. The water needs to warm a bit
before these fish arrive in big numbers.

Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811

www.johnsonsportside.com

Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430

www.terrysboatharbor.com

LAKE OF THE WOODS

There isn’t much to report here now that the Rainy River walleye
season has closed. This was one of the better spring seasons on the
river in many years, according to most reports. The weather
provided plenty of opportunities for anglers to catch numbers of
big walleyes.

Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau

(800) 382-FISH

LEECH LAKE AREA

Some of the small lakes have started to give up a few crappies
in shallow water. There hasn’t been any reports from the bays and
harbors of Leech, but look for those areas to start producing
panfish very soon if the weather stays warm.

Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505

LAKE MINNETONKA AREA

The crappie bite has picked up in six to eight feet with a jig
and minnow on Lake Minnetonka. Wayzata Bay has been one of the most
consistent spots, but most bays are now holding fish. Work the
channels or backwater bays on Lake Independence, Medicine Lake, and
Lake Sarah for crappies as well.

Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227

RAINY LAKE

The ice completely went out last weekend. Jackfish Bay and
Cranberry Bay are kicking out northern pike in shallow water so
work the creek mouths with minnows. Black Bay started giving up a
few crappies in six to eight feet, but not a lot of numbers are
being caught.

Loon’s Nest (218) 286-5850

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

Fishing reports are nonexistent at the present time. You could
probably find some active perch in the shallows over the next few
weeks, but the lake won’t be busy until the walleye season
begins.

Nodak Lodge (218) 665-2226

Twin Cities Metro

NORTHEAST METRO

Crappies are hitting minnows in shallow water on White Bear
Lake, Demonterville Lake, Big Marine Lake, and Silver Lake. The
white bass have started hitting jigs and minnows or Sonars in the
deeper holes and narrow areas of the St. Croix River. Look to the
shallows of Lake Peltier for sunfish.

Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle (651) 777-2421

WEST METRO

The north side of Lake Parley is producing crappies in six feet.
Look to Whaletail Lake for a few crappies during midday hours in
seven feet and to Lake Bavaria with minnows for crappies in eight
feet. The north side of Lake Auburn is worth noting for sunfish in
less than seven feet. Waconia Bay on Lake Waconia is producing a
mixed bag of panfish in five to eight feet.

Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022

Statewide

ALEXANDRIA AREA

Crappie action has picked up in the shallow bays of Pocket Lake,
Lobster Lake, and the Le Homme Dieu Chain. Small minnows and jigs
under a float are working best in less than seven feet. A few
sunfish also have been caught in these areas, but most have been
small.

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

ANNANDALE AREA

Panfish reports are spotty with a few crappies and sunfish
coming from the channels and shallow bays of Clearwater Lake, Lake
Sylvia, Pleasant Lake, Sugar Lake, and Cedar Lake. The late
afternoon and early evening hours seem to be most productive with
small jigs and minnows or waxworms.

Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297

BATTLE LAKE

Minnows are producing crappies at the culvert on Ten Mile Lake
and in the shallow bays of Walker Lake, Clitherall Lake, Heilberger
Lake, and Fish Lake. You’ll catch sunfish on waxworms and ice flies
in four to seven feet Deer Lake, Dead Lake, and Elbow Lake.

Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596

BEMIDJI AREA

Crappie anglers have just started hitting in some of the
traditional spring crappie spots. A few fish have been caught in
the shallow bays and shorelines of the area’s small lakes, but the
bite should only get better as the water continues to warm.

Bluewater Outdoors

(218) 444-BAIT (2248)

BLACKDUCK AREA

The few people that have been chasing crappies are reporting a
slow bite and cold water. Over the next couple weeks look to lakes
such as Rabideau, Gull, and Gilstead to produce fish in shallow
water.

Timberline Sports and Tackle

(218) 835-4636

BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA

Crappie action is spotty with no real consistency to the bite.
The best bet is to look shallow with small jigs and minnows in the
channel at Bar Harbor on Gull Lake and the ditches area of Gull as
well. An occasional crappie report also comes off North Long Lake
where a few fish are being found along the shorelines.

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

CHISAGO AREA

Dinner Bell Bay and the north bay off Highway 8 on South
Lindstrom Lake are producing crappies. You’ll also find crappies on
the north end of North Center Lake and Hazelton Bay on South Center
Lake. Sunfish action has picked up in the shallow bays of most
lakes with small jigs and minnows or waxworms working best.

Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334

CROSBY AREA

Sunfish and crappies are being caught during the afternoon hours
in less than six feet on most lakes. Leading the way this week are
lakes Milford, June, Mahnomen, Bay, Rabbit, and Serpent. Small jigs
tipped with waxworms or minnows have been the ticket on all
lakes.

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

CUSHING AREA

Sunfish reports are limited, but there are crappies to be had on
minnows in less six feet. Work the east side of Lake Shamineau and
K.O.A. Bay on Fish Trap Lake during the afternoon hours. The
shallow bays of Lake Alexander are giving up a few crappies, but
this bite hasn’t been as consistent.

Hilltop Sports (320) 749-2055

DETROIT LAKES

Sunfish have been tough to find, but the crappie bite has picked
up on the shorelines and in most shallow bays. Crappie minnows are
working best in less than seven feet at lakes Melissa, Sallie, Big
Cormorant, Big Detroit, Floyd, Big Pine, and Little Pine.

Quality Bait and Tackle (218) 844-2248

DULUTH AREA

The smelt run is on in many creeks along the north shore. A few
crappies are coming off Fish Lake in less than six feet with small
jigs and minnows. The trees in the Kimball Bay area of the St.
Louis River also are giving up crappies. Cohos are being caught on
stickbaits trolled near the surface on Lake Superior and Kamloops
action has slowed in and near the rivers.

Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094

EMILY AREA

Water temperatures are cool, limiting panfish action for most
anglers. While most traditional spots are being worked, the only
bite worth noting is in Woods Bay on Roosevelt Lake where a few
crappies have been taken with minnows in 10 feet.

Redding Sports and Spirits (218) 763-2191

FAIRMONT AREA

Panfish action remains slow with a few crappies coming off Fox
Lake and Perch Lake in less than six feet. When the sun is out,
you’ll catch a mixed bag of sunfish and crappies at George Lake and
Lake Sissiton in four to seven feet.

Hall Lake Cabins Bait & Tackle (507) 235-5225

FARIBAULT AREA

Finding numbers of panfish is difficult. The creek area of
Shields Lake and Cedar Lake are giving up a few sunfish and
crappies in shallow water. On Cannon Lake, anglers fishing from
shore are catching some good-sized perch on minnows.

Nagel’s Live Bait (507) 334-8341

GRAND RAPIDS AREA

Crappies are being caught, but most are being found outside the
traditional shallow areas. Lakes such as Big Cutfoot, Little
Cutfoot, and Splithand are producing crappies over 12 to 16 feet
via minnows. Splithand also is kicking out bluegills in 18 to 20
feet. The only shallow bite worth noting for bluegills and crappies
is taking place in the bays of the Mississippi River, where four to
six feet seems to be most productive.

Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281

MANKATO AREA

Look for crappies to be hitting minnows near Buckmasters Bridge
and in the narrows of Madison Lake. Mud Bay on Lake Washington is
giving up crappies in three to six feet. Sunfish and crappies are
being caught at the sawmill on Lake Jefferson in shallow water.

The Bobber Shop (507) 625-8228

ORTONVILLE AREA

The walleye season opens at Big Stone Lake next Saturday and
everything seems to be in line for a good start to the season. The
ice has been out for several weeks and water levels look good. The
panfish action has been slow, although Long Tom_Lake is kicking out
crappies in shallow water.

Bud’s Bait (320) 839-2480

RED WING AREA

Sauger continue to be caught below the dam on the Mississippi
River with 3/8-ounce hair jigs and minnows or ringworms in 12 to 14
feet. The dam area continues to produce sturgeon and paddlefish as
well. The best walleye reports on the river are coming from Hay
Creek and the mouth of Baypoint Park in 12 feet with jigs and
minnows. Crankbaits started turning walleyes in the Head of the
Lakes area of Lake Pepin in 12 to 15 feet.

Ike’s Bait and Tackle (651) 388-2111

Four Seasons Sports (651) 388-4334

ST. CLOUD/EDEN VALLEY AREA

The Highway 55 Bridge on Lake Koronis is producing crappies and
a few sunfish. You’ll also find crappies and sunfish at the culvert
between Mud Lake and Eden Lake. On Cedar Island Lake, the
shorelines of most bays are producing panfish during the
afternoon.

Mike’s Bait and Tackle (320) 453-2248

SAUK CENTRE AREA

The crappie bite has been slow to develop due to cool water.
Anglers have been hitting many of the traditional spots with little
or no success. The only bite worth noting is taking place at the
channel on the north end of Lake Osakis where a mixed bag of
panfish is being caught.

Fletcher’s Bait (320) 352-2155

STARBUCK AREA

The Starbuck Marina and Fish Hatchery_Bay on Lake Minnewaska are
kicking out panfish on small jigs tipped with minnows or waxworms.
You’ll find crappies in shallow water on the south end of Long Lake
and near the access on_Pelican Lake. There’s an evening crappie
bite at Lake Reno off Highway 29 with minnows.

Minnewaska Bait and Tackle (320) 239-2239

WILLMAR AREA

The panfish bite really picked up during midday hours on most
lakes for sunfish and crappies. Most lakes were producing fish
highlighted by some consistent reports in the shallows of lakes
Andrew, Nest, West Norway, Games, Diamond, Norway, Willmar/Foot,
Little Elkhorn, and Elizabeth.

Brad’s 71 Bait and Sports

(320) 235-4097

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