Minnesota Outdoor News Fishing Report – Sept. 22, 2017

Great Eight

LAKE MILLE LACS        

Look to the shallow rocks for numbers of smallmouth bass, but to the deep rock or deep-structure points for bigger bass. Plastics, crankbaits, and topwater presentations are all turning fish. Northern pike and muskies are being found on the weedlines in most bays, the north-end sand, and on the deep mus flats.

Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811

Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430

LAKE OF THE WOODS

There has been great walleye action outside the Lighthouse Gap and along the south shore in 11 to 17 feet. Walleyes also are being caught a few miles out of the Lighthouse Gap and in front of Morris Point Gap in 27 to 30 feet. Anchoring and jigging with a shiner minnow has been the ticket. You’ll still find schools of fish roaming the main basin of Big Traverse Bay in 31 to 34 feet as well. Rainy River anglers are finding more shiners, and higher numbers of walleyes have entered the river, with the morning/evening still the best. Smallmouth bass are being caught in good numbers along shoreline rock, bridge embankments and feeder streams, while sturgeon are being boated at all times of the day and night At the Northwest Angle, bottom-bouncing or trolling with crankbaits has produced walleyes in the current areas between islands in 17 to 24 feet. Canada crappie fishing is strong with walleyes mixed in. Muskies were falling to jerk baits early in the week, with blade baits bringing more fish to the boat recently.

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

Crankbaits or a jig and minnow are producing walleyes in the channels of Lake Minnetonka after dark. Muskies are hitting bucktails or sucker minnows on the 14- to 20-foot weed edges of Lake Independence and Minnetonka. Look for active crappies during low-light periods on Minnetonka, Medicine Lake, and Independence in 10 to 15 feet.

Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227

LAKE VERMILION

Walleyes have started to hit minnows on the rock pile edges and tops in 20 to 30 feet. Trolling leadcore and crankbaits in 30 feet or more in Daisy Bay and Big Bay has produced walleyes as well. You’ll find smallmouths on the 15- to 18-foot rocks or on the sand and rock shorelines. A few crappies are being caught over 20 feet around the islands, and northern pike remain active on the weedlines in Rice Bay, Stuntz Bay, Mud Creek Bay, Everett Bay, and Daisy Bay. Muskie action has been limited, with a few fish being seen on the rock points.

Pike Bay Lodge (218) 753-2430

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

If it’s cloudy, walleyes are hitting a spinner and nightcrawler during the day in 13 to 18 feet on Big Muskie Bar, Big Bend Bar, and Little Muskie Bar. Crawlers also are turning walleyes during low-light periods in the shallow weeds. Perch are being taken with a jig and minnow starting at Rich’s Townsite along the south shore in 11 to 15 feet. Northern pike continue to hit spoons or crankbaits across the lake in 7 to 9 feet.

Lake Winnie Resort Association

LEECH LAKE

Perch and walleyes are being taken with a jig and minnow over 8 to 14 feet in Trader’s Bay. Work the 20- to 22-foot humps on the north end of Walker Bay for perch as well. Walleyes also can be had with crankbaits on the east shore of Walker Bay in 9 to 12 feet or on the main lake rocks (Annex, Submarine, and Huddle’s Reef) with live bait. Muskie anglers are raising some fish on the main-lake rocks and in Portage Bay.

Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505

Shriver’s Bait Company (218) 547-2250

RAINY LAKE     

A jig and minnow continues to work best for walleyes on the deep main-lake reefs and rock areas. Smallmouth bass are being found on the rock points and island drop-offs throughout the lake. Look for crappies to be suspended over 20 feet of water or more in Black Bay or the Rat Root River. Sturgeon and walleye reports remain favorable from the Rainy River as well.

International Falls CVB (800) 325-5766

RED LAKE

Fishing pressure continues to be very light, and the unstable weather conditions haven’t helped walleye action at all. The few fish being taken are coming off the shoreline breaks in 6 to 8 feet or on the 8- to 14-foot rocks with a jig and minnow. Grouse hunters are flushing birds, but thick foliage is limiting shots and bear-hunting reports have dropped way off.

Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128

Twin Cities Metro

NORTHEAST METRO

Walleyes are being taken with a jig and minnow in the Prescott and Afton areas of the St. Croix River. You’ll find panfish on the weedlines of Powers Lake and Silver Lake, while sucker minnows are producing bass on Demontreville Lake and Powers. Minnows also are turning pike on the weedlines of Lake Jane and White Bear Lake.

Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle (651) 777-2421

WEST METRO

Northern pike are hitting sucker minnows, spoons, and crankbaits on the weedlines of Pierson Lake and Wasserman Lake. The bridges on the Crow River started giving up walleyes on a jig and minnow, while Whaletail Lake and Lake Minnewashta are producing crappies in 14 to 16 feet.

Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022

SOUTH METRO

Walleyes, crappies, and sunfish are all being caught in 10 to 15 feet at Prior Lake and Spring Lake. Crankbaits are turning northern pike on the south end of Prior, while bass remain active around the docks on Lake O’Dowd and Prior. Drift sucker minnows in 13 to 15 feet for muskies on Crystal Lake or on the grass hump of Orchard Lake for pike and muskies.

Prior Lake Bait & Tackle (952) 447-6096

LAKE WACONIA

Largemouth bass remain active along the 8-foot weedlines of Pillsbury Reef, Center Reef, Cemetery Reef, and the north shore. Bucktails or topwater baits are turning muskies on the weedlines in Waconia Bay, North Reef, and Kegg’s Reef. You’ll find crappies over 23 to 25 feet or the north side of the island in 12 to 14 feet, while sunfish have bit best on Pillsbury and Center reefs.

Mases In Towne Marina (952) 442-2096

Statewide

ALEXANDRIA AREA

Walleyes are being taken with nightcrawlers during the day in 20 to 25 feet or with crankbaits at night in 8 to 10 feet on Lake Miltona. Minnows are working best for walleyes on Lake Ida in 35 to 40 feet or on Chippewa Lake in 18 to 24 feet. The large flats throughout the Le Homme Dieu Chain of Lakes are producing bass and crappies are hitting along the 15- to 20-foot weedlines of Lake Carlos, Lake Darling, and Lake Le Homme Dieu. Big sucker minnows are turning a few muskies on Miltona along the 12- to 18-foot weeds.

Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle (320) 763-3255

ANNANDALE AREA

Minnows are producing a few walleyes in 12 to 22 feet at Pleasant Lake, Clearwater Lake, Sugar Lake, and Cedar Lake. Northern pike and bass are being taken on the weedlines of Lake John, Lake Sylvia, Maple Lake, and Clearwater. Work the 15-foot weedlines for crappies and sunfish on French Lake, Sylvia, and Clearwater. Bucktails have triggered muskies on the 12- to 15-foot weedlines of Sugar.

Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297

BATTLE LAKE AREA

Walleyes are hitting crawlers on the 25- to 35-foot humps during the day or crankbaits in 3 to 5 feet during evening hours at Otter Tail Lake, West Battle Lake, and Rush Lake. Look for sunfish and crappies in the 10- to 15-foot weeds of Clitherall Lake, Fish Lake, and Donald Lake. The 10- to 15-foot weeds on East Battle Lake, Fiske Lake, and West Battle are safe bets for bass, while minnows are producing pike on Fiske, West Battle, and Donald Lake in similar depths. Muskie reports have been best in 12 to 16 feet with Jakes on West Battle.

Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596

BLACKDUCK AREA

A jig and minnow is working best for walleyes on the 11- to 15-foot weedlines of Island Lake and Blackduck Lake. Look for a mixed bag of panfish in 15 to 20 feet on Pimushe Lake, Gilstead Lake, Gull Lake, Turtle River Lake, and Rabideau Lake. Bass and northern pike continue to hit on most lakes as well. Bear-hunting success and participation have dipped a bit, and the grouse opener offered some poor reports and others that were better than expected.

Timberline Sports and Tackle (218) 835-4636

BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA 

Walleyes are being taken with redtails on Gull Lake in 16 to 35 feet, North Long Lake in 22 to 28 feet, and Whitefish Lake in 22 to 30 feet. Minnows also are turning northern pike in the 8- to 12-foot cabbage and sand grass areas on Gull, North Long, and Lake Edwards. You’ll find crappies on the weedlines of North Long, Gull, and Cullen Lake, while sunfish and bass remain active on the shallow weedlines of most lakes.

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

CASS LAKE AREA

Walleye action has picked up again with a jig and minnow in 30 feet throughout Allen’s Bay on Cass Lake, in 18 to 20 feet on Wolf Lake, and 18 to 30 feet on Pike Bay Lake. Bluegill reports have been strong in the 8-foot cabbage of Dick’s Bay off Cass, and the Cedar Island area on Cass is producing perch in 10 to 12 feet. Trolling crankbaits on the breaklines around Cedar Island on Cass has triggered a few muskies.

Sunset Cove Resort (800) 279-4831

CHISAGO AREA   

The weedlines on lakes such as Chisago, Green, North Center, South Center, North Lindstrom, and South Lindstrom are producing panfish. Work minnows or nightcrawlers on the 12- to 14-foot rocks and sand bars for walleyes at North and South Center and Green. Trolling crankbaits on the weedlines will trigger pike, and bass are hitting plastics or topwater on most lakes.

Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334

CROSBY AREA

Look for largemouth bass on the inside weed edge and smallmouth on the deep rocks of Serpent Lake. There’s a short window of evening crappie action on the 17- to 19-foot weedlines of Clearwater Lake, Bay Lake, and Serpent. Walleye and trout reports continue to be limited. Hunters are flushing grouse, but thick cover is limiting shots at them.

Oars ‘n Mine Bait and Tackle (218) 546-6912

DETROIT LAKES AREA

Work minnows on the weedlines for walleyes at Pelican Lake and Big Cormorant Lake. The 14- to 18-foot weeds on Lake Lida are producing bass, while panfish continue to be caught in 15 to 20 feet at Lake Sallie, Big Detroit Lake, and Lake Melissa. Muskies are hitting rubber baits on Big Detroit, Sallie, and Pelican.

Quality Bait and Tackle (218) 844-2248

EAST CENTRAL MN

The current breaks on the Mississippi and Rum rivers continue to kick out smallmouth bass. A jig and minnow is turning a few walleyes at Green Lake in 17 feet. You’ll find crappies in 14 feet on Blue Lake or 7 to 9 feet on Fremont Lake.

Tales and Trails Sport Shop (763) 856-3985

ELY AREA

Minnows are turning walleyes in 20 to 34 feet at Shagawa Lake, 20 feet at Basswood Lake, and 20 to 30 feet on Lake Lac La Croix. The main-lake reefs on these lakes are producing good-sized smallmouth bass as well. Look for crappies in 14 feet on Birch Lake, while hunting reports remain limited.

The Great Outdoors (218) 365-4744

FAIRMONT AREA

Look to Budd Lake and Lake Sissiton for crappies and bluegills in 6 to 8 feet. A jig and minnow is producing walleyes on the Watonwan and Blue Earth rivers. Minnows continue to produce perch in 6 to 12 feet on Big Twin Lake.

Sommer Outdoors (507) 235-5225

FARIBAULT AREA

Sunfish and white bass are hitting on Cannon Lake, close to shore, in 4 to 6 feet. Shields Lake started giving up a few walleyes with nightcrawlers along the 10-foot weedlines, while Lake Mazaska is producing crappies and bass in 10 to 12 feet. Look to Cedar Lake and Shields with sucker minnows for northern pike in 8 to 12 feet.

Nagel’s Live Bait (507) 334-8341

GRAND MARAIS AREA

Walleyes or minnows are producing walleyes at Hungry Jack Lake in 15 to 18 feet, Poplar Lake in 12 to 15 feet, and Cascade Lake in 10 to 15 feet. Rainbow trout continue to hit nightcrawlers on Mink Lake in 15 to 20 feet and Trout Lake in 10 to 12 feet. Minnows and spoons are turning lake trout on Loon lake at 25 to 35 feet or Greenwood Lake at 35 feet. Bear hunting has dropped way off, but the first week of grouse hunting has gone well – bird numbers appear high based on hunter accounts.

Buck’s Hardware (218) 387-2280

GRAND RAPIDS AREA 

Redtails are producing a few walleyes on the 16- to 30-foot structure and weedlines of Lake Pokegama and Sugar Lake or in 18 to 30 feet at Big Splithand Lake and Lake Wabana. Crappies are being found suspended in 12 to 14 feet or along deep weed edges at Pughole Lake, Big and Little Splithand lakes, Lake Wabana, Pokegama, Sand Lake, Bowstring Lake, Trout Lake, and Big and Little Cutfoot Sioux lakes. Northern pike and bass fishing continues to be strong on most lakes, and bear hunters continue to see decent activity during legal shooting hours.

Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281

GREY EAGLE AREA

Walleyes have started to move deeper, 20 to 30 feet, and are hitting shiner minnows on Big Birch Lake. Crappies are active and suspended on Big Swan Lake in 20 to 24 feet and Big Birch over 30 feet. Mound Lake is producing a mixed bag of panfish in 12 to 15 feet, while bass and northern pike remain active on the weedlines of most lakes.

Nancy’s Bait & Tackle (320) 285-2405

HACKENSACK AREA 

Walleye action is strong with crawlers and Lindy Rigs in 20 feet at Woman Lake and Ten Mile Lake. You’ll find crappies in the 10-foot cabbage of Webb Lake, Moccasin Lake, and Pleasant Lake. Smallmouth bass are hitting on the 7-foot flats on Stoney Lake, Baby Lake, and Woman. Muskie reports have been good on the bulrush edges of Little Boy Lake with topwater baits. Grouse hunters report seeing and hearing birds, but thick cover is limiting success.

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

LAKE KABETOGAMA

A jig and minnow has worked best for walleyes along the wind-driven weedlines. Crappies are being found suspended over deep water in Lost Bay, Old Dutch, and Ash River Outlet areas. Smallmouth bass are active on the reefs, and northern pike seem to be hitting minnows and artificial baits throughout the lake. Bear hunters continue to find success, but thick cover is limiting grouse-hunting success.

Gateway Store (218) 875-2121

MADISON LAKE AREA

On Lake Washington, crankbaits are producing walleyes in 6 to 8 feet, Second Point is giving up sunfish in 10 feet, and Third Point is kicking out crappies in 10 to 12 feet. The south end of Big Jefferson Lake and German Lake are producing crappies in 8 to 10 feet. Crankbaits are turning walleyes during low-light periods on Madison Lake in less than 8 feet.

Corner Bait (507) 243-4464

MORA AREA

Sunfish are being caught in 5 to 7 feet, as are crappies in 7 to 9 feet on Knife Lake and Ann Lake. Bass fishing remains consistent on the weed flats of Quamba Lake, Ann, and Knife. Hunting reports have been limited and with the acorns dropping, bears have been less active at baits.

Jerry’s Sport & Bait Shop (320) 679-2151

ORTONVILLE AREA

Bluegills and perch are being caught from Schmidt’s Landing to Hartford Beach on Big Stone Lake. The majority of walleyes caught on Big Stone continue to run small.

Artie’s Bait (320) 839-2480

PARK RAPIDS AREA

Walleyes are hitting minnows on Fish Hook Lake, Long Lake, and Sand Lake in 20 to 25 feet. The bigger northern pike have started hitting sucker minnows in the 10- to 14-foot cabbage on Big Mantrap Lake and Long, while muskie reports have been limited to a few fish off the weedlines of Big Mantrap. Look for bluegills on Third and Sixth Crow Wing lakes over 10 to 14 feet. Grouse hunters are shooting a few birds, but it’s still very thick in the woods limiting shooting opportunities.

Delaney’s (218) 732-4281

Smokey Hills Outdoors (218) 237-5099

PERHAM AREA

Trolling crankbaits on Big Pine Lake and Little Pine Lake in 6 to 10 feet has produced walleyes during low-light periods. Crappies and bluegills are being found on Dead Lake and Star Lake along the 8-foot weed edges. Largemouth bass are hitting on the deep weedlines of Rush Lake and northern pike remain active on most lakes – bigger fish are being taken with spoons.

Gene’s Sport Shop (218) 346-3355

RED WING AREA

Crankbaits are turning the majority of walleyes in the Head of the Lakes area in 5 to 10 feet. Look to the bays for sunfish and the overhanging trees for crappies on Lake Pepin. Catfish and sturgeon continue to bite below the dam on the Mississippi River.

Four Seasons Sports (651) 388-4334

RICHMOND/ST. CLOUD AREA

Work the weedlines or docks for crappies and sunfish on Bolfing Lake, Schneider Lake, Cedar Island Lake, Rice Lake, Brown’s Lake, and Eden Lake. Small crankbaits are producing walleyes on the 10- to 14-foot weedlines of Rice and Horseshoe Lake. A jig and minnow is working best for walleyes on Lake Koronis off the edges of the bars.

Channel Marine and Sports (320) 597-5975

SAUK CENTRE AREA

Work from Battle Point to Head of the Lakes on the north end of Lake Osakis for crappies in 20 to 30 feet and sunfish in the 12-foot weeds. Osakis also is kicking out walleyes on minnows and crankbaits at night in 8 feet and during the day in 40 feet. Sauk Lake is giving up walleyes on minnows in 8 to 12 feet, and you’ll find crappies north of the narrows bridge in 12 feet here. Sucker or shiner minnows are turning northern pike on Long Bridge Lake and Little Birch Lake.

Fletcher’s Bait Shop (320) 352-2155

STAPLES/LITTLE FALLS AREA

Smallmouth bass continue to hit topwater baits or minnows above the Little Falls Dam, and a few walleyes are hitting crawlers between Blanchard Dam and the mouth of the Swan River on the Mississippi River. Archery hunters are seeing some deer, but most are waiting for bigger bucks.

Da Fishin’ Hole (320) 631-0056

STARBUCK AREA

On Lake Minnewaska, sunfish and crappies remain active in 10 to 12 feet, smallmouth bass are hitting in 16 to 18 feet, northern pike remain active lakewide, and a few walleyes are hitting minnows in 20 to 24 feet during the day or crankbaits at night in 6 to 10 feet. Walleyes also remain active at night on the west side of Lake Emily.

Minnewaska Bait and Tackle (320) 239-2239

Categories: MInnesota Fishing Reports, News

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