North Central Minnesota Fishing Report – December 14, 2012
LAKE MILLE LACS
Most of the lake is ice-covered, but there is snow sitting on top of it. Most fishing opportunities are limited to the bays such as Isle, Cove, and Wahkon where six inches of ice seems to be common, but caution is advised in and beyond those areas. Fishing reports have been limited as anglers are just starting to fish the bays.
Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811
Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430
LAKE OF THE WOODS
Permanent houses are being pulled on the lake along marked roads with nine inches of ice reported in most areas. It’s very important to utilize resort information and their roads as you access the lake on ATVs or snowmobiles. Water clarity is good and walleye action has been consistent in 15 to 22 feet.
Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau
(800) 382-FISH www.lakeofthewoodsmn.com
As of Tuesday morning, most of the main lake had a skim of ice, Walker Bay remained open, and the bays such as Kabekona, Shingobee, and Steamboat had two to three inches of ice. Anglers were getting on a handful of small lakes in the area, with limited fishing success reported.
Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505
Six inches of ice has taken hold in Sand Bay, but there are pockets of open water on the main lake. Anglers are just starting to venture out so walleye action has been slow, but spearing and angling for northern pike has improved.
Loon’s Nest (218) 286-5850
Seven inches of ice is pretty common on most of the lake, there’s more in some areas, and ATVs are being utilized although you do have to watch for a few cracks that have developed. Spearing has been decent and perch reports are favorable in eight to 13 feet. You’ll find a few walleyes mixed in as well.
Lake Winnie Resort Association www.lakewinnie.net
Most lakes have four to seven inches of ice on average and they are favorable for walking or in some cases ATV travel. Early fishing reports indicate a decent walleye bite on the nine- to 14-foot breaks of Lake Plantagenet. Spearing has been OK on some lakes, while crappies are being pulled from Bad Medicine Lake and Lake Puposky.
Taber’s Bait (218) 751-5781
Most lakes average five to eight inches of ice, but you’ll find thicker ice in some areas. This region only has about one inch of snow on the lakes so there aren’t any issues with getting around. Anglers are catching walleyes and perch in 10 to 20 feet on Blackduck Lake and Island Lake. Some of the area’s small lakes also are kicking out panfish.
Timberline Sports and Tackle
The big lakes are starting to freeze, although some pockets of open water remain. Most lakes have three to six inches of ice, but it varies so you need to watch where you’re going. Round Lake is producing walleyes in 20 feet during the morning and evening hours. On North Long Lake, northern pike are active in less than 10 feet, while crappies and walleyes are being pulled from 17 to 20 feet.
S & W Bait & Guide Service/Nisswa Guide League (218) 829-7010
Ice depths before last weekend’s storm ranged from one to six inches, so slush has developed, but people are walking out and fishing. Black Hoof Lake, Perry Lake, and several other small lakes are producing panfish and northern pike. Look for foot traffic to begin on the bigger lakes such as Rabbit and Serpent as soon as this weekend.
Oars ‘n Mine Bait and Tackle (218) 546-6912
Most lakes have about five inches of ice and although there’s snow on top of it, people are walking out. Fishing reports have been limited with an occasional crappie report coming off Eagle Lake and Molten Lake as anglers just recently started fishing.
Redding Sports and Spirits (218) 763-2191
GRAND RAPIDS AREA
This area received about three inches of snow so the ice is in good shape, with the exception of the big lakes. The small lakes have seven to nine inches and most are providing good spearing. Look for crappies and walleyes in 20 feet at Bowstring Lake and crappies in 18 to 20 feet at Splithand Lake. Bass Lake, Sylvan Bay on the Mississippi River, and Splithand are giving up bluegills in six to 18 feet.
Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281
The small lakes have four to six inches of ice, but there hasn’t been much fishing activity taking place. Fortunately, this area missed out on the majority of snow so ice depths should keep improving and fishing pressure is expected to increase by the weekend.
Swanson’s Bait and Tackle (218) 675-6176
The lake now has eight to 10 inches of ice so ATVs are being used. Limits of walleyes have been coming out of seven to 10 feet on jigging spoons or plain hooks and minnows. Several big pike have been caught by walleye anglers as well.
Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128
ST. CLOUD/EDEN VALLEY AREA
With the exception of a few open spots on some of the bigger lakes, ice has taken hold. There is snow sitting on top of it so anglers have been cautiously checking ice depths around the area and most of them hope to be walking on select lakes this weekend.
Mike’s Bait and Tackle (320) 453-2248