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North Central Minnesota Fishing Report – September 21st, 2012

LAKE MILLE LACS

East – Walleye action during the day has been slow, but crankbaits started producing fish on the six- to 12-foot rocks during low-light periods. Slip bobbers and leeches also work on the rocks early and late in the day with Big Point, Hunter’s Point, and Lakeside Reef all producing fish. Muskie reports have been limited, but smallmouth bass are hitting live bait, crankbaits, or tube jigs on the rocks.
Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811

West – Walleyes are hitting leeches and minnows under bobbers at night off the mud flats in 30 feet. Daytime walleye action has been hit and miss, but there has been some fish caught with jigs and minnows on the 15-foot rocks. Muskie action has been much slower than recent weeks, but northern pike are hitting crankbaits on the weedlines in Vineland Bay and north end.
Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430

LAKE OF THE WOODS

Jigs and frozen shiner minnows are turning walleyes in 30 to 32 feet from the Lighthouse Gap, Morris Point, and Zippel Bay areas. Consistent reports also are coming from Garden Island and into Four Mile Bay. At the Northwest Angle, 50- to 100-fish days have been common with plenty of big walleyes in the mix. Jigs and minnows are best around Flag Island, Oak Island, and other traditional spots. Muskie anglers are seeing better numbers of big fish by trolling.
Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau
(800) 382-FISH

LEECH LAKE

Walleyes are being taken with jigs or spinner rigs and minnows in 12 to 16 feet off Stoney Point and the south end of Horseshoe Bay or slightly deeper on the humps in Walker Bay during the day. At night, anglers trolling crankbaits in nine to 12 feet are finding scattered walleyes between Sand Point and Cedar Point. Perch action continues to improve with Bear Island and the Sheep Pasture areas holding fish in nine to 12 feet. Muskie reports have slowed, although the rocks are giving up an occasional fish.
Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505

RAINY LAKE

Look for walleyes to hit chubs in Sand Bay in 30 to 32 feet. The Rainy River is kicking out walleyes and smallmouth bass via nightcrawlers close to the shoreline. Northern pike are active in the Rainy Lake City area, but most continue to be small. Minnows or crankbaits will turn smallmouth bass on the mid-depth rocks.
Loon’s Nest (218) 286-5850

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

Leeches started producing walleyes on bars such as Big Muskie, Little Muskie, and Long in 14 to 16 feet. Walleyes also continue to be caught in less than six feet from the Duck Pass to High Banks area. A few perch are being taken with minnows in front of the resort in six to eight feet, but the most consistent perch reports are coming from the inlet to Little Cutfoot Sioux Lake. Work the weeds and shoreline breaks with minnows for northern pike in 10 to 12 feet.
Nodak Lodge (218) 665-2226

BEMIDJI AREA

Walleyes are hitting a jig and minnow in 12 to 25 feet at Lake Bemidji, Cass Lake, and Lake Plantagenet. Look for crappies and bluegills in eight to 12 feet on Grace Lake and Kitchi Lake. Muskie action is improving with good numbers of smaller fish hitting. Grouse hunters have done well and there seems to be better numbers of geese in the area.
Bluewater Outdoors
(218) 444-BAIT (2248)

BLACKDUCK AREA

Walleye action is slow on area lakes. Bluegills and crappies are active with good reports coming from 10 to 15 feet at Gull Lake, Gilstead Lake, Rabideau Lake, and Pimushe Lake. Goose numbers are minimal, but grouse hunters are finding more birds than expected. Bear registrations are up from last year with a couple more brought in this week.
Timberline Sports and Tackle
(218) 835-4636

BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA

Walleyes are in 14 to 30 feet and hitting most live-bait options at Gull Lake, Pelican Lake, and North Long Lake. Bigger minnows or crankbaits are producing pike in 12 to 14 feet at North Long, Gull, and Lake Edwards. Crappies are suspended over 20 feet and sunfish continue to be found in the shallow weeds of most lakes. Bass are being taken with sucker minnows, crawlers, or spinnerbaits in 12 to 16 feet on area lakes.
S & W Bait & Guide Service/Nisswa Guide League      (218) 829-7010

GRAND RAPIDS AREA

A jig and minnow is producing walleyes in 13 to 20 feet on Lake Pokegama or in 15 to 20 feet at Lake Wabana, Bass Lake, and Trout Lake. Muskie action has picked up with suckers at Deer Lake, North Star Lake, and the deep holes of the Big Fork River. Hit Big and Little Cutfoot Sioux lakes for bluegills in 12 to 20 feet and crappies over 20 feet or more. Bass is giving up sunfish in 12 to 16 feet. Pokegama is producing crappies in 16 to 25 feet.
Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281

RED LAKE

Consistently strong winds have slowed most walleye- and pike-fishing opportunities recently so it’s been difficult to get a handle on the bite. Bear hunters have had “decent” successs, especially during the early part of the season with a few 300-pound animals shot in the area. Although foliage is still pretty thick, grouse hunters saw a fair number of birds.
Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128

ST. CLOUD/EDEN VALLEY AREA

Sunfish are hitting on Lake Koronis, Schneider Lake, Cedar Island Lake, Pearl Lake, and Rice Lake in less than six feet. Look for crappies on Rice, Pearl, and Grand Lake in 12 to 14 feet. Hit Koronis and Rice for walleyes in 20 feet during the day with minnows and with Shad Raps at night along the shorelines. Pike are hitting minnows on most lakes in 10 to 16 feet. Goose-hunting reports have been limited, but there seems to be more birds moving into the area and archery hunters have done well on antlerless deer.
Mike’s Bait and Tackle (320) 453-2248

SAUK CENTRE AREA

Crappie action has improved at Lilly Lake and Long Lake with minnows in 10 to 14 feet. The north end of Lake Osakis is producing sunfish in six to 10 feet. The best walleye reports are from the north end of Sauk Lake with minnows in six to nine feet. Goose-hunting reports have varied, but the right fields are producing good numbers of birds.
Fletcher’s Bait (320) 352-2155

EAST CENTRAL MN

The deep holes on the Rum River and Mississippi River are producing walleyes and smallmouth bass. Bass and pike action has been strong on the weedlines of most lakes with minnows or spinnerbaits. Look to Blue Lake for sunfish in seven to 10 feet and to Green Lake for crappies in 12 to 14 feet. Now that some of the corn is coming out, goose hunters are having better success in the fields.
Tales and Trails Sport Shop
(763) 856-3985

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