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North Central Minnesota Fishing Report – November 29th, 2013

LAKE MILLE LACS

East – Most bays are ice-covered, with four inches reported in Isle Bay Tuesday morning. Foot traffic should be an option this weekend. With the exception of shoreline ice, the main lake remained open, but it looked like Jello so as soon as the wind stops blowing it should cap as well.
Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811
Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430

LAKE OF THE WOODS

Four Mile Bay has four to five inches of ice and there’s five inches on the lake straight out from Pine Island. In the Morris Point area, there’s six to seven inches on the bay and four to five inches on the lake. Zippel Bay has five to seven inches with three to four inches of ice out about a half mile in 15 feet of water. Arnesen’s Rocky Point has frozen over, but there’s still a bit of visible water on the lake out from it. Water clarity in shallow water looks good and resorts could start marking ATV and snowmobile trails within the next week. The Rainy River is frozen and holding snow, but with the current ice depths remain spotty.
Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau (800) 382-FISH

LEECH LAKE

The small bays are ice-covered, but Walker Bay and most of the main lake was still open Tuesday morning. The small lakes in this area also are covered with four to six inches of ice so there are some options for foot travel to be had.
Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505
Shriver’s Bait Company (218) 547-2250

RAINY LAKE

Although the main lake remains open, most bays have locked up. Anglers have been checking ice depths in the bays and finding two to four inches, but it is not consistent. A few more days of cold weather should allow for more uniform ice and some limited fishing opportunities.
Loon’s Nest (218) 286-5850

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

The entire lake appeared to be covered with ice early this week with as much as four inches reported about a quarter-mile out on the west side. There are some cracks that developed close to shore due to the wind, so these areas need to be approached with caution until they have a chance to heal.
Lake Winnie Resort Association

BLACKDUCK AREA

Ice depths are favorable for walking with five to eight inches on most lakes. The wind has caused some cracks to develop on the bigger lakes, which are worth noting, but they seem to be healing as well. Most reports indicate that ice conditions have improved throughout the week so there should be plenty of spots to fish this weekend.
Timberline Sports and Tackle
(218) 835-4636

BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA

The wind has kept portions of most big lakes from completely capping with ice, but the bays, shorelines, and channels are covered. Anglers have started walking on several small lakes with up to five inches of ice reported on those, but fishing reports have been limited.
S & W Bait & Guide Service/Nisswa Guide League      (218) 829-7010

CROSBY AREA

Anglers started walking on some small lakes Monday afternoon with three to five inches of ice reported. Even the big lakes remained ice-covered despite strong winds early this week. It appeared as though the ice fishing season would shift into high gear this weekend.
Oars ‘n Mine Bait and Tackle                     (218) 546-6912

EMILY AREA

People have started walking on four to five inches of ice on some small lakes, but fishing success has been limited. As of Tuesday morning, pockets of open water could still be seen on the bigger lakes, but they are expected to completely cap as soon as the wind calms down.
Redding Sports and Spirits                     (218) 763-2191

GRAND RAPIDS AREA

There should be plenty of lakes that offer walkable ice by this weekend. Look to the small, shallow bodies of water – those traditional first-ice spots – to have four to six inches of ice on them. The bigger, wind-swept lakes are lagging behind as far as ice depths, but if the wind dies down it will only take a few days for them to offer walkable ice as well.
Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281

HACKENSACK AREA

Anglers have started walking on the small lakes with three to five inches of ice being found. Most bigger bodies of water capped with ice last weekend, but there are a lot of spots on them with ice not yet favorable for foot travel.
Swanson’s Bait and Tackle                     (218) 675-6176

RED LAKE

With an average of five to eight inches of ice, foot traffic has started. If things hold and ice continues building, ATVs could be an option soon. Windy conditions during freeze-up have the water a little murky, which has had some affect on the walleye bite, but fish are being caught and the water seems to be clearing up every day.
Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128

SAUK CENTRE AREA

Anglers started walking on many lakes early this week with three to five inches of ice being found. With the exception of a few pockets of open water on a couple of big lakes, ice conditions seem favorable for an early start to the winter fishing season.
Fletcher’s Bait (320) 352-2155

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