MN: Lake conditions improve in many areas and deteriorate in others Issue: 1

Big Six

LAKE MILLE LACS

East – This area received more rain than snow last week so getting
around is not an issue – check with a resort before venturing out.
Perch have to be sorted, but anglers are putting together decent
catches in 15 feet or less with jigging spoons. Walleye action has
been best during the evening in 20 feet or more on gravel and mud
flats. Jigging spoons and hole hopping has produced the most
fish.

Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811

www.johnsonsportside.com

West – The mud flats such as Seven Mile, Eight Mile, and Seguchie’s
continue to produce walleyes. Work the tops early and late in the
day and as deep as 32 feet during midday periods with jigging
spoons. The rock points have produced a few walleyes and these
areas seem to be holding decent numbers of perch. You’ll also find
plenty of tullibees on the deep side of the mud flats. Roads should
be open for vehicle traffic to most mud flats by this
weekend.

Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430

www.terrysboatharbor.com

LAKE OF THE WOODS

A good mix of walleyes and sauger are being caught just outside
Pine Island with glow jigs and minnows in 26 to 31 feet. The best
bite has been during the morning hours and some of the bigger
walleyes are being found suspended three to six feet off
bottom.

Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau

(800) 382-FISH

LEECH LAKE AREA

About 20 inches of snow fell last week so it has limited travel on
the lake and fishing action as well. Conditions seem to be better
on the main lake than in Walker Bay and a few roads have started to
be developed on the big part of the lake. There is some slush to
deal with so call ahead before just going out.

Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505

LAKE MINNETONKA AREA

Wayzata Bay and Excelsior Bay on Lake Minnetonka are giving up
walleyes in 16 to 28 feet. Pike are hitting sucker minnows on the
weedlines and crappies are biting during the evening hours in 19
feet at Minnetonka. Look to Black Lake and Gray’s Bay for suspended
sunfish over 17 feet. Medicine Lake, Lake Sarah, and Lake
Independence are giving up a few walleyes and crappies in 20 to 23
feet.

Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227

RAINY LAKE

Birch Point continues to produce walleyes and a few crappies in 32
to 34 feet. The Grindstone Island area also is kicking out walleyes
in 38 to 42 feet. Jigging spoons and minnow heads or setlines and
minnows have both worked on the walleyes. The Rainy Lake City area
started producing good-sized northern pike in shallow water.

Loon’s Nest (218) 286-5850

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

You’ll find perch on the south end of Horseshoe Bar and the sunken
island in 22 to 30 feet. These areas also give up walleyes during
the afternoon and evening, most of which are hitting jigging
spoons. Tip-ups and minnows have provided steady pike action in
these locations as well. This area received about 15 inches of snow
last week so anglers are now forced to stay on the plowed
roads.

Nodak Lodge (218) 665-2226

Twin Cities Metro

NORTHEAST METRO

The Bayport area of the St. Croix River is producing crappies and
walleyes in 30 feet. Look to White Bear Lake for crappies in 15
feet and on Centerville Lake you’ll find sunfish and crappies in 10
to 12 feet. Tip-ups and sucker minnows are producing northern pike
along the shallow weedlines of Lake Jane and Demonterville
Lake.

Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle (651) 777-2421

WEST METRO

Look for sunfish at Lotus Lake in 12 feet and on Lake Parley you’ll
find sunfish and crappies in 10 to 18 feet. On Lake Zumbra, tip-ups
and sucker minnows are producing northern pike in shallow water.
Look to Lake Auburn with tip-ups and minnows for northern pike on
the 10- to 12-foot weedlines.

Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022

LAKE WACONIA

Ice conditions have improved after last week’s rain and recent cold
weather, but caution is still advised when traveling. Sunfish are
being taken on the 10- to 16-foot weedlines of Waconia Bay.
Walleyes seem to be most active late at night, hitting shiner
minnows in 20 to 25 feet, on Center Reef, Pillsbury Reef, and
between the two marinas. Sucker minnows are producing pike in
Waconia Bay and a few crappies have been caught on the reefs at
night.

Mases In Towne Marina (952) 442-2096

www.intownemarina.com

Statewide

ALEXANDRIA AREA

There’s some evening crappie action on Lake Le Homme Dieu and Lake
Ida in 18 to 24 feet. Walleyes also can be had during the evening
on Lake Miltona, but they are scattered between 14 and 40 feet.
Travel has become difficult after last week’s snow. Most lakes now
have quite a bit of slush to deal with so caution is advised.

Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle

(320) 763-3255

ANNANDALE AREA

Jigging spoons and minnow heads continue to trigger walleyes in 18
to 24 feet at Clearwater Lake, Sugar Lake, and Cedar Lake. Crappies
are being found suspended over the deep holes of lakes John, Maple,
Buffalo, Pleasant, and Clearwater. Look for sunfish in eight to 10
feet at Lake Marie, Pelican Lake, Maple, and John. Northern pike
can be had on tip-ups and sucker minnows on the weedlines of Lake
Francis, John, Clearwater, and Cedar.

Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297 www.littlejimssports.com

BATTLE LAKE

Twelve inches of snow last week has caused slush to form on most
lakes so you have to watch where you travel. Anglers are getting on
Otter Tail Lake and West Battle Lake and catching a few walleyes
with jigging spoons in 20 to 30 feet. Look for sunfish and crappies
to be suspended over 17 to 20 feet at South Turtle Lake, Fish Lake,
East Lost Lake, and East Battle Lake. Tip-ups and sucker minnows
are turning pike in 15 to 20 feet at Otter Tail, South Turtle, and
West Battle.

Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596

BEMIDJI AREA

Walleye action has been spotty, but Lake Plantagenet, Wolf Lake,
Lake Andrusia, and Lake Bemidji are giving up a few during
low-light periods in 25 to 30 feet. You’ll catch perch on Bemidji
with jigging spoons and minnow heads over 30 to 50 feet. Grace Lake
and Grant Lake are worth noting for panfish. Measurable snow has
caused slush to develop on some lakes so you’ll want to watch for
those areas when traveling.

Bluewater Outdoors

(218) 444-BAIT (2248)

BLACKDUCK AREA

Blackduck Lake is kicking out perch and walleyes in 12 to 14 feet.
Jigging spoons tipped with waxies have worked best for the bigger
perch, while setlines or spoons are producing walleyes during
low-light periods. Bluegills are biting early and late at Gull Lake
in 14 to 20 and on Rabideau Lake in 12 14 feet.

Timberline Sports and Tackle

(218) 835-4636

BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA

Shiner minnows or rainbow minnows are working best for walleyes on
the north end of Gull Lake, Round Lake, and Pelican Lake in 14 to
28 feet. Northern pike are hitting sucker minnows on the south end
of Gull, North Long Lake, Lake Margaret, and Lake Edwards in 10 to
22 feet. Look for crappies in eight to 22 feet at Gull, North Long,
and Margaret. Sunfish reports have been best off Nisswa Lake, North
Long, and Gull in less than 14 feet.

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

CHISAGO AREA

The main story in this area has been the quick improvement of ice
conditions. Travel on most lakes is much better after last week’s
rain and the cold snap that followed. You’ll find suspended
crappies in the 30-foot hole on Chisago Lake during the evening
hours. The south end of Chisago is worth noting for sunfish in 10
to 12 feet and walleyes in 12 to 16 feet. A few walleyes continue
to be caught late in the day on South Lindstrom Lake in 18 to 24
feet. Look to the deep hole on Kroon Lake for crappies early and
late in the day.

Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334

CROSBY AREA

A few walleyes are coming off the Crosby end of Serpent Lake in 24
to 28 with setlines and shiners. Crappie and sunfish activity is
strong with Milford Lake, Little Rabbit Lake, Mahnomen Lake, Upper
Dean Lake, and Perry Lake kicking out fish on glow jigs tipped with
waxies or minnows. Northern pike have been active for spearers in
shallow water and along the deep weedlines of Lower Mission Lake,
East Rabbit Lake, and Serpent.

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

DETROIT LAKES

Fishing activity has been put on hold due to the deep snow and
slush it caused last week. It’s difficult to get around on area
lakes and anglers are waiting for lake conditions to improve.

Quality Bait and Tackle (218) 844-2248

DULUTH AREA

Crappies continue to hit minnows and glow jigs on Fish Lake in 18
feet during the afternoon and evening hours. Pike are hitting
sucker minnows under tip-ups at Rice Lake in six feet. A few
walleyes can be had from the bay on the St. Louis River in six to
eight feet with jigging spoons. There have been a few sturgeon
caught accidently in this area of the river as well.

Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094

EAST-CENTRAL MINN

Sunfish are hitting on Blue Lake during the day in 14 feet and
you’ll find a few crappies mixed in during low-light periods. Hit
Elk Lake for northern pike and crappies in 11 feet and Green Lake
started giving up crappies in 16 feet on minnows early and late in
the day.

Tales and Trails Sport Shop (763) 856-3985

EMILY AREA

Eagle Lake started producing crappies in 18 to 20 feet during the
day. Shiner minnows are turning walleyes on the south end of Molten
Lake in 16 to 18 feet during the evening hours. Tip-ups and sucker
minnows have been the ticket for consistent northern pike action at
Greer Lake in 12 to 14 feet.

Redding Sports and Spirits (218) 763-2191

FAIRMONT AREA

Minnows are turning perch and crappies at Fox Lake in 15 to 18
feet. Look to Sissiton Lake for crappies and bluegills in 14 to 18
feet and Big Twin Lake is a safe bet for walleyes and crappies
during low-light periods. Hall Lake is kicking out perch, crappies,
and walleyes in 16 to 22 feet, while Iowa Lake and North Silver
Lake are safe bets for perch.

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

FARIBAULT AREA

Anglers working Lake Mazaska are finding suspended sunfish and
crappies over 30 feet. Roberds Lake is giving up a few walleyes and
sunfish on the 12- to 15-foot rocks early and late in the day. Look
to West Cedar Lake in 20 feet for crappies and northern pike. On
Hunt Lake, you’ll find sunfish in 15 to 18 feet throughout the
day.

Nagel’s Live Bait (507) 334-8341

GRAND MARAIS AREA

Lake trout are hitting a jig and minnow on the 25- to 30-foot humps
of Pine Lake and over 40 to 48 feet at Seagull Lake. On Daniels
Lake and Duncan Lake, jigging spoons have worked best for lake
trout over 35 to 45 feet. Setlines and minnows are triggering
walleyes in 18 to 22 feet at Devil Track Lake, in 12 to 18 feet at
Two Islands Lake, and along the six- to 10-foot weedlines of Elbow
Lake. Tip-ups and sucker minnows are the ticket for pike at
Northern Lights Lake in eight to 13 feet.

Buck’s Hardware (218) 387-2280

GRAND RAPIDS AREA

On Lake Pokegama, anglers are finding crappies in 15 feet,
bluegills in 20 to 30 feet, and walleyes in 20 to 35 feet. Look to
Big Splithand Lake for crappies and bluegills in 19 to 21 feet.
There’s some evening walleye action with setlines and shiner
minnows in 20 to 30 feet at lakes such as Moose, Deer, and Wabana.
Big and Little Cutfoot continue to produce panfish in 18 to 28
feet. Last week’s snow has formed pockets of slush so you need to
watch where you travel.

Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281

HACKENSACK AREA

This area received about a foot of snow and it has caused quite a
bit of slush to develop. Anglers are getting on Pleasant Lake and
catching sunfish with waxworms in the northwest bay over 12 to 15
feet. You’ll also find suspended crappies on Webb Lake over 30 feet
during low-light periods.

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

LAKE KABETOGAMA

Deep snow and slush has made it very difficult to travel throughout
the fishery. Some extended cold would really help fishing options
on Kabetogama and Namakan. The few who have been out report limited
walleye and sauger action. Pike seem to be a better option in the
bays or mouth of the bays.

Gateway Store (218) 875-2121

www.gatewaygeneral.com

LAKE VERMILION

With more than two feet of snow on the ground anglers are dealing
with tough, slushy conditions throughout the lake. The only walleye
reports heard this week are coming off the east end of the lake in
20 feet or more, but fishing action has been limited.

Lake Vermilion Trading Company

(218) 666-6052

lakevermiliontradingco.com

MANKATO AREA

Minnows are turning crappies at Duck Lake in 10 to 12 feet during
the evening hours. Look to Baker’s Bay on Lake Washington for
sunfish in 12 feet and crappies in 18 to 22 feet. A few walleyes
are coming off the northwest end of Lake Hanska with jigging spoons
and minnow heads during low-light periods.

The Bobber Shop (507) 625-8228

McGREGOR AREA

Lake Minnewawa and Rat Lake are giving up crappies in 14 to 18 feet
during low-light periods. Look for an occasional walleye off Big
Sandy Lake and Minnewawa in 18 to 24 feet. Setlines and shiner
minnows are working best early and late in the day. Northern pike
and sunfish reports have been poor.

Willey’s Sport Shop & Spirits

(218) 426-3382

ORTONVILLE AREA

This area received quite a bit of snow last week so slush has
become an issue on most lakes. You really have to watch the pockets
of slush that have developed as you travel. Jigging and setlines
have produced walleyes on the north end of Big Stone Lake in 10
feet. On the south end of the lake, perch continue to be caught
with waxworms in 12 feet. Reports from other lakes have been
minimal this week due to the conditions.

Bud’s Bait (320) 839-2480

PARK RAPIDS AREA

Look to Portage Lake for sunfish and crappies in 10 to 16 feet. A
few walleyes have come off Fish Hook Lake with fathead minnows in
25 to 30 feet. The weedlines of Long Lake continue to produce
northern pike via tip-ups and sucker minnows. This area received
more than a foot of snow last week and slush has developed on many
lakes so travel has been difficult.

Delaney’s (218) 732-4281

RED LAKE

Walleyes are hitting jigging spoons and minnow heads in eight to 12
feet during the day and in six to eight feet during low-light
periods. An occasional slab crappie is pulled from these spots and
quite a few big pike have been taken on tip-ups or by
accident.

Dr. Tackle Sports (218) 647-8657

Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128

RED WING AREA

Anglers fishing through the ice on the Mississippi River are
catching walleyes and sauger near Methodist Point in 15 to 18 feet.
Anglers fishing from boats are doing well below the dam for
walleyes and sauger with a hair jig and minnow in 12 to 18
feet.

Ike’s Bait and Tackle (651) 388-2111

Four Seasons Sports (651) 388-4334

ST. CLOUD/EDEN VALLEY AREA

Minnows and glow hooks are triggering crappies at Cedar Island
Lake, Horseshoe Lake, Rice Lake, and Pearl Lake in 12 to 20 feet
during the evening. Look for a few walleyes off Horseshoe, Rice,
and Lake Koronis during low-light periods in 16 to 20 feet.

Mike’s Bait and Tackle (320) 453-2248

SAUK CENTRE AREA

Crappies are hitting on both ends of Sauk Lake in 22 to 45 feet
during low-light periods. The Diamond Point area of Sauk is kicking
out sunfish in eight feet, Lilly Lake is a safe bet for sunfish and
crappies in 22 to 24 feet, you’ll find crappies at Maple Lake in 24
feet and sunfish in 12 to 15 feet, and the north end of Lake Osakis
continues to give up a mixed bag of fish. Jigging spoons are
working best on the 14- to 24-foot structure of Sauk for
eating-sized walleyes. The south end of Big Birch Lake started
producing walleyes in 15 to 38 feet on shiner minnows.

Fletcher’s Bait (320) 352-2155

STARBUCK AREA

Walleye reports have been limited, but the Glenwood end of Lake
Minnewaska is giving up sunfish in 14 feet and you will find
crappies in front of the Fish Hatchery on Minnewaska in 15 feet
during the evening hours. Walleye reports have been minimal this
week and the slush has increased on area lakes so getting around is
more difficult.

Minnewaska Bait and Tackle

(320) 239-2239

WATERVILLE AREA

You’ll find active perch and sunfish during the day in the swimming
beach area of Lake Tetonka over 18 feet. On Lake Elysian, walleyes,
crappies, and northern pike are being caught on minnows in eight
feet. Ice conditions have improved on most lakes and vehicle travel
is becoming an option.

Axel’s Tackle Box (507) 362-4444

www.axelstacklebox.blogspot.com

WILLMAR AREA

Look for suspended crappies in fairly deep water at Green Lake and
Norway Lake. Crappies also can be had during the evening hours in
eight feet or less at Foot Lake and Lake Solomon. Walleyes are
hitting setlines and shiner minnows in 14 feet at Eagle Lake.

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

 

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