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Friday, February 3rd, 2023

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North Central Minnesota Fishing Report – September 12th, 2014


East – During the day, walleyes are hitting slip bobbers and leeches on the 12- to 20-foot rocks, and at night, crankbaits are working on the 6- to 12-foot rocks. Catching smallmouth bass remains easy on the 3- to 6-foot rocks and muskies are starting to show up on the shallow reefs. Some big northern pike are being caught with spinnerbaits on the north end weedlines or with sucker minnows in the bays over 12 feet.

Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811

West – Walleyes are biting best at night on top or off the edges of most mud flats with slip bobbers and leeches working best. Smallmouth bass and some good-sized perch can be had on the 20- to 23-foot rocks and northern pike continue to hit along the weedlines in St. Alban’s Bay and Garrison Bay.

Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430


Walleyes are being caught with down riggers and Wally Divers or Shad Raps in 30 to 35 feet near Garden Island and Archie’s Reef. Crawlers are working well in 15 to 20 feet near reefs, island points, six miles north of Lighthouse Gap, six miles out from Zippel Bay, and just off Pine Island. On the Rainy River, jigging with frozen shiners is turning walleyes in 14 to 20 feet, and sturgeon are hitting towards Birchdale. At the Northwest Angle, Four Blocks and Little Oak are worth hitting for walleyes, perch, crappies and bass in 25 to 30 feet. The muskie bite is best in the evenings near weedbeds with slow-presented small lures.

Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau (800) 382-FISH


Lindy Rigs tipped with minnows or a piece of nightcrawler are producing walleyes on the rock piles and reefs in 12 to 30 feet. Jigging with sucker minnows also has triggered walleyes and smallmouth bass on these rock structures. Muskie action remains strong on the weedlines, rock points and reefs with several 40-inch fish reported, as well as two over 50 inches in the last week. Crappies have started hitting minnows in 16 to 22 feet on the mud flats.

Pike Bay Lodge (218) 753-2430


Northern pike are hitting crankbaits or minnows in 9 to 11 feet, and perch are being found in the 5- to 7-foot weeds off the points and shorelines. Crankbaits also are turning walleyes in 11 to 15 feet at Little Stoney Point, south end of Bena Bar, Rich’s Townsite, Sugar Point and Raven’s Point. 

Lake Winnie Resort Association


The jig and minnow bite has started during the day in 7 to 9 feet along most wind-driven shorelines or shallower flats. Crankbaits are working at night along the 9- to 12-foot breaks in Walker Bay. Perch reports have been spotty, although Sucker Bay is giving up fish in 7 to 12 feet. The rocks and weeds are holding muskies, most of which are hitting large plastics or bucktails. 

Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505

Shriver’s Bait Company (218) 547-2250


Walleyes are hitting leeches during the evening hours in the Reinier area or past the Brule in Cranberry Bay. A few crappies have started showing up near the edge of Black Bay, and northern pike can be had with sucker minnows along the weedlines in most bays. Bear hunters are reporting less activity at baits than earlier in the season.

Loon’s Nest (218) 286-5850


Changing weather patterns has slowed the walleye bite a bit, but fish are being caught in 5 to 7 feet along the north shore or 6 to 12 feet on the south and east shorelines. Trolling crankbaits or a spinner and minnow is working best. Bear and goose hunting reports have been limited, but there are geese in the area.

Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128


Jigging Rapalas, crawlers or redtails are producing walleyes on the mid-lake humps out to 34 feet on Lake Bemidji, and Lake Plantagenet is giving up walleyes on crawlers and spinners in 15 to 18 feet. Look for suspended crappies over 18 to 22 feet and sunfish along the lilly pads of Campbell Lake, while Balm Lake continues to produce largemouth bass. Bear hunters are reporting more activity in the mornings, and there seems to be a lot of geese being shot in the area.

Taber’s Bait (218) 751-5781 


Walleyes are hitting minnows and crankbaits in 10 to 12 feet at Blackduck Lake and Island Lake. Panfish also remain active in the 10- to 14-foot weeds of Gilstead Lake, Gull Lake, Pimushe Lake and Rabideau Lake. There hasn’t been much activity for bear hunters, but with more small grain fields in the area this year, goose hunting has been good.

Timberline Sports and Tackle (218) 835-4636


North Long Lake is producing walleyes on Lindy Rigs and creek minnows in 18 to 28 feet. On Whitefish Lake, bass, northern pike and walleyes are hitting along the weedlines in 16 to 30 feet. Sunfish continue to be found around the docks or shallow weeds on most lakes. 

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


Redtails are turning walleyes at Pike Bay Lake in 25 to 35 feet. Leeches are working best on Cass Lake for walleyes in the evenings over 30 to 32 feet on Bucks’ Bar and Deadman’s Bar. Look for bluegills and crappies in the cabbage of Kitchi Lake, Wolf Lake and Allen’s Bay on Cass. Stoney Point is a safe bet for perch, and muskies are being found scattered in the deeper weeds of Cass.

Sunset Cove Resort (800) 279-4831


Trolling crankbaits over deep water has produced suspended walleyes on Roosevelt Lake. Look to Goodrich Lake for crappies in 12 to 14 feet and Eagle Lake is kicking out northern pike on large crankbaits in 15 feet. On the east side of Lake Emily, sunfish are hitting in 8 to 10 feet. Bear hunters are reporting that baits continue to get hit with several reports of multiple bears on baits and several more shot last weekend.

Redding Sports and Spirits                     (218) 763-2191


Muskie activity has picked up with bucktails on the weedlines of Deer Lake, Moose Lake and North Star Lake. Walleye anglers are finding big fish over deep water and eating-sized fish in the weeds at lakes Pokegama, Sugar, Deer, Wabana and Trout. Crappies are hitting over 16 to 25 feet on Sand Lake, Big Splithand Lake, Bowstring Lake, Big and Little Cutfoot Sioux, and Pokegama. Look for bluegills in the weeds of Little Cutfoot, Big Bass Lake and Pokegama. Bear and goose hunting action has been good with several more bear shot recently and strong goose numbers – some of the best hunts have been over water. 

Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281


A jig and minnow is producing walleyes in 15 to 22 feet at Woman Lake and Little Boy Lake. Hit the weed edges with topwater baits for muskies on Lake Wabedo and Little Boy. Crappies are hanging in 12 to 14 and sunfish are along the 16- to 18-foot weedlines of Birch Lake, Pleasant Lake and Webb Lake. A few more bear have been brought in and goose hunting reports have been good.

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


Sunfish are being caught in 6 to 10 feet on Rice Lake, Lake Koronis, Cedar Island Lake, Schnieder Lake and Becker Lake. Walleyes are hitting crankbaits and minnows at Koronis in 8 to 14 feet during low-light periods. Crappies are starting to suspend over deep water throughout the Horseshoe Chain of Lakes. Goose hunting has been good for some groups, but you have to be in the right field.

Mike’s Bait and Tackle (320) 453-2248


Guerney Lake and Big Sauk Lake are producing crappies in 6 to 10 feet, as is Long Bridge Lake in 5 to 7 feet. On Lake Osakis, crappies and sunfish are hitting near Battle Point and Buck Point in 12 to 18 feet. Look for a mixed bag of panfish off the weedlines of Lilly Lake, Long Lake and Fairy Lake. Goose hunting has been OK, and there seems to be quite a few birds in certain areas.

Fletcher’s Bait Shop (320) 352-2155


The Mississippi River is kicking out walleyes above the Little Falls dam and walleyes north of the dam on crawlers. Work the rock piles and weedlines of Fish Trap Lake for walleyes, crappies and sunfish. Panfish also can be had off the weedlines of Green Prairie Lake and Beauty Lake. There hasn’t been much shooting by goose hunters in this area.

Da Fishin’ Hole (320) 631-0056


Walleye action has slowed a bit, but anchoring and pitching jigs with minnows has worked in 14 to 16 feet. Better areas this week include, Whiskey Flats, Blinker, and the south tip of Buffalo Bay.

Riverside Bait & Tackle (218) 386-1200



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