Minnesota Outdoor News Fishing Report – January 6, 2017
LAKE MILLE LACS
East – Walleye action has been consistently good with fish from 12 to 25 inches being caught in big numbers across the lake in 8 to 30 feet. Work the shallow reefs during low-light periods and the mud during the day. Perch are being caught in the 25-foot or deeper basin areas and jumbos are showing up regularly, while northern pike reports have been sporadic in the bays. There’s 12 inches of ice throughout the main lake and as much as 16 inches in the bays.
Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811
West – You’ll find numbers of walleyes on the reefs, rock points, mud flats, and deeper breaks in most bays. Anglers are catching numbers of 15 to 17 inch walleyes with plenty of big and small fish in the mix as well. Jumbo perch are being caught in the deep basin areas or in St. Alban’s Bay in 20 to 24 feet and the bays are giving up a few northern pike as well. Most of the lake had 12 inches of ice early this week.
Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430
LAKE OF THE WOODS
Rattle spoons, glow jigs, and setlines with plain hooks and minnows are turning walleyes and sauger in 24 to 31 feet on the main lake. Ice depths range from 13 to 19 inches on the south end. On the Rainy River, there’s some evening walleye action, but work through a resort due to varying ice depths. At the Northwest Angle, 14 to 16 inches of ice is being reported. The ice road from Young’s Bay to resorts on Flag Island and Oak Island is open to vehicles. Walleyes and sauger are being caught in 19 to 28 feet here, with crappies coming off the Ontario side in 29 to 33 feet.
Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau (800) 382-FISH
LAKE MINNETONKA AREA
Sunfish reports have improved along the 15-foot weedlines in Black Lake, St. Louis Bay, and Carson’s Bay on Lake Minnetonka. You’ll find walleyes in Wayzata Bay and the west end of Minnetonka in 18 to 28 feet. Hit Lake Independence during low-light periods in 24 to 36 feet for walleyes and crappies. Anglers are reporting 4 to 9 inches of ice with walking and ATVs being used.
Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227
Fish House Reef in Big Bay and the mouth of Pike Bay are both providing consistent walleye action in 22 to 24 feet. Crappie reports have been limited, but northern pike are active throughout Everett Bay and Stuntz Bay. It depends on the spot, but 12 to 16 inches of ice is pretty common.
Pike Bay Lodge (218) 753-2430
Perch reports have been best on the west side of the lake in 8 to 10 feet. The first break off Snaghole also is producing perch in 17 to 20 feet. Look for a few walleyes on the north end humps in 20 to 22 feet and the bigger northern pike are being taken in 15 feet. Most of the lake has 14 inches of ice, but vehicle travel is limited to where you access the lake due to a couple of cracks that have opened – work through a resort.
Walleye reports have been best during the evening hours off the Trapper’s Landing area in 15 to 17 feet. Areas such as Pine Point, the Snake Pit, Goose Island, and GrandVu Flats are producing walleyes in 10 to 15 feet. There’s also some evening walleye action on the humps in Walker Bay over 22 to 34 feet. Much of the main lake has 14 to 17 inches of ice, with 6 to 12 inches in Walker Bay.
Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505
Shriver’s Bait Company (218) 547-2250
Ice conditions are improving quickly and there has been some good northern pike action at the mouth of Black Bay. Anglers using portable shelters are finding walleyes and crappies in some of the bigger bays over 25 feet or more.
International Falls CVB (800) 325-5766
Truck travel is now an option with an average ice depth of about 18 inches. Walleyes are being caught on the 8- to 12-foot gravel bars or 14- to 15-foot mud flats. The mornings and evenings have been best with jigging spoons and some fish being caught overnight on rattle reels.
Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128
Twin Cities Metro
Tip-ups and sucker minnows are producing northern pike in the 10- foot weeds of White Bear Lake, Bald Eagle Lake, and Demontreville Lake. Crappies are biting at night on White Bear in 16 feet, while Lake Jane and Demontreville are kicking out crappies in 12 feet. The Bayport area of the St. Croix River continues to produce crappies in 30 to 35 feet, and Battle Creek Lake is giving up northern pike in less than 8 feet. ATVs are being used on most lakes with 8 to 10 inches of ice being found.
Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle (651) 777-2421
Crappies are being caught during low-light periods on Lake Wasserman in 20 to 22 feet, Parley Lake in 12 to 16 feet, and Hydes Lake in 12 feet. Look for walleyes in less than 6 feet on Silver Lake and in 6 to 10 feet on High Island Lake. Crappies and northern pike are hitting straight out from the access in 10 to 12 feet or in the southeast bay over 18 to 20 feet on Whaletail Lake. The sunken hump on Parley is a safe bet for sunfish. Anglers were reporting at least 10 inches of ice early this week.
Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022
The weedline in Waconia Bay is producing northern pike and sunfish during the day and a few crappies and walleyes during low-light periods. Center Reef and Pillsbury Reef are giving up walleyes and crappies in 20 feet early and late each day and sunfish in shallower water during midday hours. Most areas of the lake had 7 to 9 inches of ice early this week.
Mases In Towne Marina (952) 442-2096
Look for walleyes on Reno Lake in 16 to 18 feet and in 18 to 24 feet on Lake Geneva, Lake Le Homme Dieu, Lake Ida, and Lake Miltona. Crappies are being found over 20 to 30 feet on Le Homme Dieu, while northern pike are running in shallow water on most lakes. Anglers were finding 8 to 14 inches of ice on area lakes early this week.
Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle (320) 763-3255
Lakes such as Little Maple, Clearwater, John, Pleasant, and Sylvia are giving up crappies in 18 to 22 feet. A few sunfish are being taken from Lake Marie, John, Little Maple, and Clearwater in 10 to 18 feet. You’ll find walleyes on Clearwater Lake, Cedar Lake, and Sugar Lake in 18 to 24 feet. Cedar, Clearwater, and Sugar are the area’s best bets for northern pike in 12 to 15 feet. Six to 12 inches of ice was pretty common as of Tuesday morning.
Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297
BATTLE LAKE AREA
Look for walleyes on West Battle Lake in 20 to 25 feet and in 15 to 20 on Otter Tail Lake. Sunfish have started hitting on West Lost Lake, East Lost Lake, and South Turtle Lake in 10 to 15 feet, while crappies are set up over 18 to 22 feet at West Battle. Clitherall Lake, Otter Tail, and West Battle are safe bets for northern pike in 15 to 20 feet. Area lakes now have 12 inches of ice, but there is some snow on it so ATVs and snowmobiles are being used.
Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596
Lake Bemidji is giving up walleyes and a few perch in 15 to 25 feet, with some walleyes coming from shallower water during low-light periods. Crappies and bluegills have started hitting on Little Grant Lake over 26 feet. Even though there is 7 inches of snow on the ice, most lakes are now OK to drive on.
Taber’s Bait (218) 751-5781
Pimushe Lake, Gilstead Lake, and Rabideau Lake are kicking out crappies and bluegills over 20 to 22 feet. Island Lake and Round Lake are producing perch in 10 to 20 feet, while Blackduck Lake is giving up perch in 10 feet and crappies over 20 feet or more. Ten to 18 inches of ice was reported early in the week, but 6 inches of fresh snow has limited where people are driving vehicles.
Timberline Sports and Tackle (218) 835-4636
Crappies and sunfish are hitting in 14 feet on North Long Lake, and walleyes continue to hit on Gull Lake, Whitefish Lake, Round Lake, and North Long in 14 to 28 feet. Northern pike have started hitting in 12 to 14 feet on Gull, and sunfish are being caught on Nisswa Lake and Cullen Lake in 8 to 10 feet. Ice depths vary from 8 to 14 inches.
S & W Bait & Guide Service/Nisswa Guide League (218) 829-7010
CASS LAKE AREA
The evening hours have been good for walleyes in Allen’s Bay on Cass in 18 feet, and Pike Bay Lake is producing perch in the 8- to 10-foot cabbage. Panfish reports have been limited, but there hasn’t been many people fishing them. Most of the lakes now have 15 inches of ice, but snowmobiles are the best means of travel due to the fresh 10 inches of snow in the area.
Sunset Cove Resort (800) 279-4831
A few walleyes are coming from the channel on Chisago Lake in 8 to 11 feet during the evening hours. Hit the bays on Chisago, North Center Lake, and South Lindstrom Lake for panfish in less than 12 feet. The south end of Green Lake is producing panfish and northern pike in 8 to 11 feet. Most lakes now have 7 to 9 inches of ice so ATVs are an option for travel.
Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334
Hit Milford Lake in 18 to 26 feet and Big Mahnomen Lake in 12 to 14 feet or 22 to 25 feet for sunfish and a few crappies during the day. Northern pike action is strong on Serpent Lake, Upper Dean Lake, and Perry Lake in less than 12 feet. Look for walleyes on Serpent and Nokay Lake in 18 to 25 feet during low-light periods. Depending on the lake, 8 to 14 inches of ice is pretty common throughout the area.
Oars ‘n Mine Bait and Tackle (218) 546-6912
DETROIT LAKES AREA
Big Cormorant Lake, Middle Cormorant Lake, Height of Land Lake, Lizzie Lake, and Island Lake are producing walleyes in 15 to 20 feet. Hit Little Detroit Lake and Height of Land for panfish in 20 to 25 feet. Ice conditions are good with 14 inches being pretty common on most lakes.
Quality Bait and Tackle (218) 844-2248
Fish Lake is kicking out crappies in 15 feet on glow jigs and minnows. The Duluth harbor on Lake Superior is giving up walleyes in 8 to 15 feet, while Boulder Lake is producing walleyes in 10 feet. Rice Lake is producing walleyes and northern pike in 5 feet. With the exception of Duluth harbor, the inland lakes have at least 14 inches of ice.
Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094
EAST CENTRAL MN
Walleyes and crappies are hitting on Blue Lake in 25 feet and these fish are suspended. Look to Green Lake for crappies and walleyes in 17 to 20 feet and to Blue for sunfish in 12 to 15 feet. Hit Little Elk Lake for northern pike and crappies in 11 feet. ATVs and snowmobiles continue to be used on 8 to 11 inches of ice.
Tales and Trails Sport Shop (763) 856-3985
Crappies are hitting over 25 feet on Eagle Lake during low-light periods, and the rock island area on Ruth Lake is producing pike in 12 to 15 feet. Look to the right of the access on Lawrence Lake with waxworms for sunfish in 18 feet. Eight to 10 inches of ice is common on all area lakes.
Redding Sports and Spirits (218) 763-2191
Hall Lake, Budd Lake, and Lake Sissiton are giving up crappies and bluegills in 15 to 20 feet. These lakes will produce a few walleyes at night in similar depths as well. Look to Big Twin Lake for perch and Cedar Lake is giving up walleyes and northern pike in 6 to 8 feet. Ice conditions continue to improve with 6 to 10 inches reported on area lakes early in the week.
Sommer Outdoors (507) 235-5225
Crappies, sunfish, and a few walleyes are coming off Roberds Lake in 12 to 18 feet. French Lake is giving up walleyes and crappies in 20 to 22 feet, while Cedar Lake is producing sunfish and crappies in 12 to 18 feet. Look to Kelley Dudley Lake for panfish in 12 feet and the main bar on Shields Lake is holding crappies. Cannon Lake is giving up crappies, walleyes, and perch in less than 10 feet during the evening hours. ATVs are being used on most lakes with 5 to 10 inches of ice reported.
Nagel’s Live Bait (507) 334-8341
GRAND RAPIDS AREA
Hit Big and Little Splithand lakes or Bowstring Lake for crappies over 20 to 22 feet. Big and Little Cutfoot Sioux lakes are kicking out crappies and bluegills in similar depths. A few walleyes are being caught during the evening hours in 16 to 30 feet on Lake Pokegama, Trout Lake, Moose Lake, and Lake Wabana. Northern pike are being caught from 8 to 15 feet on most lakes. Anglers are starting to drive on most small lakes and using ATVs or snowmobiles on others.
Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281
GREY EAGLE AREA
Hit Big Birch Lake between Hunter’s Bay and Beaver Bay or in front of the Rock Tavern for walleyes in 18 to 30 feet. Hunter’s Bay is giving up sunfish and northern pike, while the north end of Big Swan Lake is kicking out crappies over 20 to 30 feet and sunfish in shallower water. The north side of Trace Lake is producing a few walleyes in 10 feet and Moose Lake is worth noting for crappies. Most lakes have about 10 inches of ice, with a bit more on some of the shallow lakes.
Nancy’s Bait & Tackle (320) 285-2405
Northern pike reports are good in shallow water throughout most bays and island areas. Walleyes have been tough to locate, but perch, sauger, and tullibees are biting in 26 to 32 feet. Snowmobile trails are now staked and the ice roads should be within the next week.
Gateway Store (218) 875-2121
Crappies are being found suspended over deep water and bluegills are set up along the shallow weedbeds on Lake Inguadona, Big Boy Lake, and Squaw Bay. Walleye action has been best during low-light periods on the south end of Leech Lake or off Horseshoe Island and Government Point on Woman Lake. Big Boy, Broadwater Bay and east side of Leech are giving up some good-sized northern pike.
The One Stop (218) 363-2252
MADISON LAKE AREA
Hit the north shore and narrows area on Madison Lake for walleyes and crappies in 20 to 25 feet. Duck Lake is producing crappies in 25 feet, and Lake Washington is giving up a few walleyes and crappies in 20 to 24 feet. On German Lake, crappies and bluegills are biting in 15 to 20 feet. Eight to 10 inches of ice is common on all area lakes.
Corner Bait (507) 243-4464
Sunfish continue to hit on Lake Eleven and Fish Lake in 6 to 8 feet. On Knife Lake, you’ll find crappies during the evening hours in 6 to 8 feet and walleyes by the island. Most lakes now have 11 to 13 inches of ice and minimal snow cover.
Jerry’s Sport & Bait Shop (320) 679-2151
Perch reports have mostly been favorable on Big Stone Lake with the majority of fish coming from 12 feet on the south end. Basically, the first 4 to 6 miles of the lake has been productive. A few walleyes, crappies, and bluegills are being caught as well. The stretch being fished has 13 to 15 inches of ice, but there are spots with less ice outside that area.
Artie’s Bait (320) 839-2480
PARK RAPIDS AREA
Fish Hook Lake and Long Lake are producing walleyes in 18 to 21 feet. Hit the Crow Wing Chain in 12 feet for bluegills and over 30 feet at night for suspended crappies. Northern pike reports have been favorable on Potato Lake, Long, and Fish Hook in 10 to 12 feet. You’ll find 7 to 12 inches of ice on area lakes with ATVs a safe option on all lakes and some vehicle travel starting on select lakes as well.
Delaney’s (218) 732-4281
Smokey Hills Outdoors (218) 237-5099
Big Pine Lake is producing walleyes in 20 to 25 feet during the morning and evening hours. Look to Rush Lake for panfish and a few walleyes in 10 to 12 feet, while Star Lake and Dead Lake are giving up crappies and bluegills in 12 to 20 feet. Most lakes had 10 to 12 inches of ice on them early this week.
Gene’s Sport Shop (218) 346-3355
RED WING AREA
Anglers in boats are catching walleyes with plastics below the dam on the Mississippi River in 10 to 14 feet. The marinas and bays have about 10 inches of ice on them and they are giving up some panfish. The Frontenac area of Lake Pepin is producing walleyes and saugers in 16 to 18 feet – walking or ATVs are the best travel options in this area.
Four Seasons Sports (651) 388-4334
RICHMOND/ST. CLOUD AREA
Lake Koronis is producing walleyes in 15 to 25 feet and northern pike in shallow water. Look to Rice Lake for crappies in 18 to 22 feet, and Big Lake is kicking out sunfish in 18 to 25 feet. Becker Lake started giving up sunfish during the day and crappies in the evenings over 12 to 14 feet. Look to Horseshoe Lake for walleyes in 18 to 24 feet and catfish in 18 to 30 feet. Grand Lake and Pearl Lake are giving up northern pike, crappies, and a few walleyes as well. Ice depths vary on area lakes from 8 to 10 inches.
Channel Marine and Sports (320) 597-5975
SAUK CENTRE AREA
Walleyes are hitting shiners or spoons on Sauk Lake in 8 to 10 feet or 18 to 20 feet. You’ll find crappies off Diamond Point in 10 feet or in the 36-foot hole on Sauk as well. A few sunfish have started hitting on Smith Lake in 10 to 12 feet, and ice conditions are fine for ATV and some vehicle travel depending on the lake.
Fletcher’s Bait Shop (320) 352-2155
STAPLES/LITTLE FALLS AREA
The north end of Beauty Lake started giving up panfish in 15 feet, and Fish Trap Lake is producing crappies and a few walleyes during low-light periods. Hit Green Prairie Lake for sunfish, while northern pike seem to be active in shallow water on most lakes. You’ll find about 8 inches of ice on most lakes.
Da Fishin’ Hole (320) 631-0056
The Glenwood end of Lake Minnewaska is giving up crappies during the evening hours over 15 feet and a few sunfish during the day in 12 to 15 feet. Lake Emily continues to produce a few walleyes in less than 5 feet, while walleye reports from other lakes have been slow. Ice conditions are good with 14 inches or more reported on area lakes.
Minnewaska Bait and Tackle (320) 239-2239
Big Kandi Lake, Lake Wagonda, Lake Elizabeth, and Lake Minnetoga are producing some walleyes and perch in less than 10 feet. Eagle Lake is giving up a few crappies in 15 feet, Diamond Lake is producing panfish in 15 to 20 feet, and Long Lake is giving up a few walleyes in 8 to 10 feet. The northwest corner of Green Lake is a safe bet for walleyes in 30 to 34 feet, while Norway Lake is giving up walleyes and crappies in 10 to 15 feet. Anglers are finding 6 to 15 inches of ice on area lakes.
Brad’s 71 Bait and Sports (320) 235-4097
Lake Shetek is kicking out walleyes and crappies in 8 feet, Lake Sarah is giving up perch in 10 feet, Rock Lake is producing walleyes in 7 feet, while School Grove Lake and Lady Slipper Lake are producing walleyes in 6 to 8 feet. Ice conditions are very good and vehicles have started being used on some lakes.
Borch’s Sporting Goods (507) 532-4880