Sunday, January 29th, 2023
Sunday, January 29th, 2023

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

MN: Ice holding up well despite unseasonably warm, windy conditions Issue: 52

Big Six

LAKE MILLE LACS

Ice conditions are best on the south end of the lake with 10 to 12
inches reported in many areas. The ice is less favorable on the
north and west sides of the lake and the wind early this week
continued to shift the ice so it’s best to check with a bait shop
or resort before venturing out. On the south end, walleyes and
perch seem to be most active in 16 feet or less with a few walleye
reports coming from deeper water.

Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811

www.johnsonsportside.com

Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430

www.terrysboatharbor.com

LAKE OF THE WOODS

As of Tuesday morning, large trucks had not been allowed to be used
off most access points – that could change by the weekend. The road
is staked and in good shape for light vehicle traffic so check with
a resort before venturing out. The walleye and sauger bite
continues to be very good during the morning and late afternoon
hours in 20 to 24 feet. Glow or gold jigging spoons or setlines
with glow hooks and shiner minnows are both turning fish. The bays
and Bostic Creek area have provided a good run of northern pike
again this week with most of those fish coming from 12 feet or
less.

Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau

(800) 382-FISH

LEECH LAKE

Ice depths average six to 11 inches in Walker Bay, but there are
some areas within or near the bay that have less ice. Some of the
main-lake areas, those spots being fished, anyway, have a foot or
more of ice and ATVs are being used to reach those areas. Walker
Bay is giving up plenty of small walleyes in 30 feet or more, with
a few more keeping-sized fish coming out of 20 feet. The best
walleye action is coming off Pine Point and Stoney Point during
low-light periods in seven to nine feet. There has been a few
consistent perch reports off the east and west sides of Goose
Island in 12 feet.

Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505

LAKE MINNETONKA AREA

Northern pike are being caught in 14 feet on tip-ups and sucker
minnows and a few walleyes can be had in 24 feet on Lake
Minnetonka. Excelsior Bay, Priest Bay, and Smithtown Bay are worth
noting. The north side of Lake Sarah is giving up sunfish in 18 to
29 feet. Anglers can only get to the spots that are accessible via
foot travel. Ice depths still vary a lot with one to six inches
reported on area lakes.

Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227

RAINY LAKE

Ice conditions continue to lag behind where they should be for this
time of year, but anglers have started using ATVs on select areas
of the lake. The Birch Point area remains the best option for
walleyes in 28 to 34 feet with jigging spoons and minnow heads. A
few walleyes are being taken during low-light periods at the Rainy
Lake City area in 10 feet. Ciscoes and tip-ups continue to trigger
northern pike in eight to 10 feet in Black Bay.

Loon’s Nest (218) 286-5850

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

Some of the cracks that were evident last week have healed and
those that remain are being navigated via ATVs. A few perch and
walleyes have been taken on the sunken island, about two miles out,
in 23 to 25 feet. Northern pike action has been decent with tip-ups
and sucker minnows and there has been a few good spearing and perch
reports off the west side in less than nine feet.

Nodak Lodge (218) 665-2226

Twin Cities Metro

NORTHEAST METRO

Most anglers are finding six to eight inches of ice on the areas
being fished, but there are spots with less ice. Crappies are being
found suspended over the deep holes of Bald Eagle Lake early and
late in the day. On Lake Phalen, tip-ups and shiners are producing
northern pike in 10 feet and Demonterville Lake is a safe bet for
pike and bass in 10 feet or less with tip-ups. The Belle Air Beach
area of White Bear Lake is producing crappies in 10 to 15 feet and
you’ll hit walleyes on the north side of the lake in 15 to 20
feet.

Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle (651) 777-2421

WEST METRO

Anglers are fishing through the ice in the Belle Plaine area of the
Minnesota River and catching walleyes. The best panfish reports are
coming off Hydes Lake for crappies in 12 feet and Cedar Lake is
producing crappies and sunfish in 11 feet. Spearing for northern
pike has been good at Mitchell Lake and Lake Zumbra in less than 10
feet. Angling for pike has been best on the north end of Lake
Minnewashta in eight to 10 feet. Ice depths vary and common sense
is advised, with four to seven inches being found on most
lakes.

Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022

LAKE WACONIA

There’s as much as eight inches of ice in some areas, but there
continues to be problem spots with much less ice so it’s best to
call or stop in before venturing out. A few walleyes have been
caught on Center Reef during low-light periods in 12 to 17 feet and
Waconia Bay is giving up sunfish in 10 to 13 feet. There’s a few
crappies coming off Pillsbury Reef during low-light periods in 12
to 14 feet.

Mases In Towne Marina (952) 442-2096

www.intownemarina.com

Statewide

ALEXANDRIA AREA

There is eight to 10 inches of ice is on the majority of lakes, but
some bigger bodies of water still have spots with thin ice. Crappie
action has been consistent during low-light periods at Lake Mary
and Pocket Lake in 10 to 12 feet and at Smith Lake in slightly
deeper water. Anglers are catching two or three keeper walleyes a
night at lakes Mary, Ida, and Miltona in 16 to 20 feet on setlines
and shiners or jigging spoons and minnow heads.

Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle

(320) 763-3255

ANNANDALE AREA

There’s still open water on a few lakes and as much as eight inches
on other lakes. Look to Lake Francis for crappies in 18 feet and
northern pike in 12 feet. Buffalo Lake started giving up crappies
over 20 feet during the evening hours, and you’ll find sunfish on
Lake Marie and Clearwater Lake in 12 to 20 feet throughout the day.
Walleyes also have bit during the evening hours at Clearwater in 14
to 20 feet on setlines and shiner minnows.

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

BATTLE LAKE

Walleyes are hitting jigging spoons or setlines and shiners in 18
to 22 feet at Otter Tail Lake, West Battle Lake, and Pelican Lake
by Ashby. Crappies and bluegills are in 10 to 14 feet at Pelican,
South Turtle Lake, East Lost, and West Lost lakes. Hit the
weedlines with sucker minnows at Clitherall Lake, North Turtle, and
South Turtle lakes for pike. Ice is good with nine to 13 inches on
all lakes.

Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596

BEMIDJI AREA

You’ll find eight to 12 inches of ice on most lakes with ATVs being
used everywhere. Lake Bemidji and Lake Plantagenet are giving up
walleyes in eight to 14 feet during the evening hours. Tip-ups and
sucker minnows are producing northern pike on the north end of
Bemidji. Panfish reports have been limited to Grace Lake, where
bluegills and crappies continue to be caught in 16 to 22
feet.

Bluewater Outdoors

(218) 444-BAIT (2248)

BLACKDUCK AREA

Blackduck Lake is producing perch and a few walleyes in six to
eight feet and good-sized crappies and bluegills in 20 feet.
On Island Lake, perch and walleyes are being caught on jigging
spoons in 15 feet during the morning and evening hours. Look to
Pimushe Lake and Rabideau Lake for panfish in 20 feet. Ice
conditions remain favorable on all lakes with some bigger vehicles
starting to show up on the ice.

Timberline Sports and Tackle

(218) 835-4636

BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA

Ice depths vary from five to 11 inches. Gull Lake, North Long Lake,
and Pelican Lake are giving up walleyes in 16 to 25 feet via
jigging spoons and minnow heads. Crappies are hitting on the north
end of Gull in 12 to 18 feet, the Highway 371 Bay on North Long,
and on most small lakes. Pike are hitting suckers and shiners in
shallow water on most lakes.

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

CASS LAKE AREA

The ice is in good shape with 10 to 14 inches on most lakes.
Walleyes are hitting fatheads during low-light periods in 20 to 22
feet on Cass Lake and Pike Bay Lake. Pike spearing has been
excellent in Allen’s Bay on Cass, while the seven-foot sand areas
are giving up perch. Lake Andrusia has been producing numbers of
pike in shallow water as well.

Sunset Cove Resort (800) 279-4831 sunsetcove-resort.com

CHISAGO AREA

Crappies and walleyes are hitting below the “Dinner Bell” on South
Lindstrom Lake in 14 to 16 feet. The channel between Chisago Lake
and South Lindstrom and the stretch between the A Frame and Eagle’s
Nest on Chisago are producing sunfish. Look for evening crappies in
10 to 12 feet at Little Green Lake. On South Lindstrom, you’ll
catch crappies and walleyes in front of the hospital in 22 feet.
North Center Lake is giving up a mixed bag of panfish, while
Chisago and Little Green have been best for pike in 12 feet. Ice
depths vary, so walk or use an ATV.

Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334

DETROIT LAKES

The ice is holding up and ATVs are being used on most lakes.
Walleyes bite best on jigging spoons or shiners at Big Detroit
Lake, Cormorant Lake, Pelican Lake, and Lake Melissa in 20 to 30
feet. Crappies are suspending over 20 feet at lakes Melissa, Big
Detroit, and Severson, while sunfish can be had at Floyd Lake,
Melissa, Severson, and Big Detroit in 12 to 14 feet.

Quality Bait and Tackle (218) 844-2248

DULUTH AREA

There’s a good crappie bite at Fish Lake in 17 to 19 feet with
minnows and glow jigs. At Boulder Lake, you’ll hit walleyes in 12
feet and crappies in 15 feet during low-light periods. Rice Lake is
kicking out northern pike, perch, and a few walleyes in six to
seven feet. The harbor on the St. Louis River is giving up walleyes
and crappies in six to 10 feet.

Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094

ELY AREA

Walleyes and northern pike are hitting setlines and minnows at Wood
Lake in 12 to 14 feet. Walleyes and some keeping-sized perch are
coming off Lake Shagawa in 19 to 21 feet. On Birch Lake, you’ll
find crappies in 24 to 27 feet and northern pike are hitting
ciscoes in the bays of Birch in about six feet. Ice depths average
about eight inches on most lakes with more on some and less on
other lakes.

The Great Outdoors (218) 365-4744

EMILY AREA

ATVs are being used on most lakes with six to 11 inches of ice
being found. The north end of Eagle Lake is producing crappies
during low-light periods in 20 feet. Pike are hitting suckers at
Ruth Lake in eight to 12 feet and walleye reports have been slow in
the area. Look to Lake Inguadona for sunfish in 15 feet.

Redding Sports and Spirits (218) 763-2191

FAIRMONT AREA

Anglers are walking on three to seven inches of ice and some lakes
opened since last week. Waxworms are producing sunfish and crappies
at Lake Sissiton in 15 feet. Boy Scout Point on Iowa Lake is
producing perch with minnows in nine feet and you’ll also find
perch at North Silver Lake in four to six feet.

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

FARIBAULT AREA

You’ll find four to seven inches of ice on most lakes so ATVs have
started being used. French Lake is producing crappies and walleyes
in 20 feet during low-light periods of the day. Roberds Lake is
kicking out walleyes, sunfish, and northern pike in 18 to 20 feet.
Look to the south end of Cedar Lake for crappies and northern pike
in 15 feet, and Circle Lake started giving up crappies as
well.

Nagel’s Live Bait (507) 334-8341

GRAND MARAIS AREA

Jigging spoons and minnow heads are producing walleyes during the
afternoon hours at Hungry Jack Lake in 20 feet, Poplar Lake in 25
feet, and East Twin Lake in 12 feet. Hit Elbow Lake and Devil Track
Lake in six to 10 feet with tip-ups and sucker minnows for northern
pike. Perch action has been strong at Pike Lake in eight feet. The
big lakes such as Saganaga and Seagull still have marginal ice, but
you’ll find as much as 12 inches or more on most small lakes.

Buck’s Hardware (218) 387-2280

GRAND RAPIDS AREA

Most lakes now have enough ice to allow ATV traffic. Crappie action
is strong in 20 feet or more with glow jigs and minnows at lakes
such as Bowstring, Big Cutfoot, Little Cutfoot, Big Splithand, and
Little Splithand. Look for sunfish in eight to 13 feet at Bass
Lake, Graves Lake, and Lake Pokegama. Walleyes are most active
during low-light periods in 18 to 40 feet at Pokegama, Trout Lake,
Lake Wabana, and Sugar Lake. Spearing and angling for pike has been
best in the bays of Pokegama.

Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281

HACKENSACK AREA

Ice conditions have not improved much since last week and on some
lakes the wind and warm weather has weakened the ice, so caution is
advised. Spearing for pike has been good in the shallows Birch Lake
and there’s been panfish caught during low-light periods in the
bays of Woman Lake. Walleye reports have been limited throughout
the area.

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

MANKATO AREA

The ice is holding up, but walking is the best option due to
problem areas on some lakes. Lake Henry is producing walleyes in
less than five feet, as is Lake Hanska in six to 10 feet. On Lake
Washington, Third Point is producing walleyes and crappies after
dark and Mud Bay is giving up bluegills and perch during the day.
Crappies and bluegills also are coming off German Lake in six to 10
feet and at the narrows on Madison Lake. A few walleyes have been
taken on the north side of Lake Elysian in six to 10 feet and
you’ll catch a mixed bag of panfish on Lake Francis.

The Bobber Shop (507) 625-8228

McGREGOR AREA

Ice conditions haven’t changed much, which means eight to 10 inches
on the small lakes and less on the big lakes. Look for crappies and
pike on Big Sandy Lake, Lake Minnewawa, and Round Lake in 12 to 15
feet during the afternoon. Walleye and sunfish action has been
limited throughout the area.

Willey’s Sport Shop & Spirits

(218) 426-3382

ORTONVILLE AREA

The wind and warm weather hasn’t allowed the ice to get much
thicker and a few spots have re-opened on the big lakes so caution
is advised. Walleye action has picked up in the Meadowbrook and
Twin Silo areas of Big Stone Lake during the evening in 12 to 14
feet. The south end of Big Stone is producing perch in 12 feet via
waxies. Peterson Slough is giving up crappies and perch in 12 feet
and you’ll find walleyes and crappies on Lake Lac qui Parle from
the middle to south end.

Bud’s Bait (320) 839-2480

PARK RAPIDS AREA

Walleyes are hitting setlines and bigger minnows at Fish Hook Lake
in 22 to 27 feet and on Island Lake and Potato Lake in 18 to 22
feet – low-light periods have been best. Island and the Crow Wing
Chain of Lakes are giving up crappies in 14 to 16 feet and
bluegills in 12 to 14 feet. Cloudy days have been best for pike on
Fish Hook and Big Mantrap Lake in eight to 14 feet. ATVs are being
used on most lakes without hesitation.

Delaney’s (218) 732-4281

PINE CITY AREA

The north end of Lake Pokegama is giving up walleyes and crappies
in 20 to 22 feet. The west side is producing sunfish in 15 to 17
feet. Work the west side of Cross Lake in 20 to 24 feet for
crappies and the north end for sunfish in 20 feet and pike in 12
feet. Walleyes are hitting on the west side of West Rush Lake in 30
feet, while East Rush is producing them in 18 feet. ATVs are being
used on most lakes with 10 inches of ice being reported.

Red’s Bait & Tackle (320) 629-1154

RED LAKE

Walleyes continue to cooperate, hitting jigging spoons throughout
the day. The best reports are coming along the east and south
shores in eight to 12 feet. Trucks and wheel houses are now going
out to 10 to 12 feet of water and ATV traffic is best beyond
that.

Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128

ST. CLOUD/EDEN VALLEY AREA

Ice depths vary, but most lakes have five to nine inches on them.
Look for crappies on Rice Lake, Clear Lake, Brown’s Lake, and
Horseshoe Lake in 16 to 20 feet. Walleyes also can be had on these
lakes in 12 to 20 feet during the evening with jigging spoons and
minnow heads. The bays and shoreline areas of Lake Koronis are
producing pike for spearers. Look to Goodner Lake and Pearl Lake
for a mixed bag of panfish in eight to 12 feet.

Mike’s Bait and Tackle (320) 453-2248

SAUK CENTRE AREA

Crappie action on Sauk Lake is excellent in 25 to 35 feet and
you’ll find a few walleyes mixed in with them. Gurney Lake and
Little Sauk Lake are kicking out crappies in 14 to 16 feet as well.
The north end of Lake Osakis is giving up walleyes in 20 to 24
feet, as is Big Birch Lake in 18 to 30 feet. Hooper’s Hills on Sauk
also is a safe bet for walleyes in 22 feet. You’ll find sunfish on
the north end of Osakis in 22 to 24 feet, Lake Villard in 10 to 14
feet, and Smith Lake is giving up sunfish and crappies in 10 to 32
feet. The ice is in good shape with nine to 12 inches on area
lakes.

Fletcher’s Bait (320) 352-2155

WILLMAR AREA

The wind and warm weather caused problems with the ice this week,
especially on the prairie lakes, which have some open spots. On
other lakes, four to eight inches of ice is being found, but
walking out is the best option. Most anglers are chasing walleyes
with Green Lake giving up ‘eyes in 10 to 30 feet during the
evening. Lakes such as Long, Eagle, Florida, and Andrew are
producing them during low-light periods in 15 to 20 feet.

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

 

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