Minnesota Outdoor News Fishing Report – May 18, 2018
LAKE MILLE LACS
East – Larger walleyes have been pretty active in less than 15 feet, hitting jigs tipped with minnows or plastics. The north end is giving up better numbers of 15- to 20-inch fish. A mixed bag of walleyes and smallmouth bass are being pulled off the 6- to 12-foot rocks with plastics.
Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811
West – Most reports indicate a good walleye bite from 7 to 15 feet in St. Alban’s Bay, Pike Point, Brown’s Point, and Seguchie Point. There is a day bite in 18 to 22 feet in St. Alban’s Bay as well. A jig and minnow or live-bait rig and leech is producing the majority of fish. A few smallmouth are being caught in shallow water as well.
Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430
LAKE OF THE WOODS
A jig and a frozen shiner is the ticket for walleye and sauger while anchored up, with a lot of fish of various sizes stacked in 10 to 20 feet. The Rainy River has been on fire, producing numbers of big females on jigs and frozen shiner minnows. At the Northwest Angle, reports have been similar to the south shore – anglers using a jig and a minnow along shore lines were catching walleyes of all sizes.
Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau (800) 382-FISH
LAKE MINNETONKA AREA
Crappie action remains strong along the north shorelines, out to 6 feet, on Lake Minnetonka, Lake Independence, Lake Sarah, and Medicine Lake. The walleyes being caught are coming from 3 to 5 feet during low-light periods in the channels of Minnetonka on jigs tipped with minnows and leeches. Largemouth bass and northern pike also have been caught on most lakes in less than 6 feet.
Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227
Walleyes are hitting minnows, crankbaits, and leeches throughout Pike Bay in 5 to 8 feet. You’ll also find walleyes on the main lake in 12 to 25 feet, or the mouths of Everett Bay, Stuntz Bay, and Cable Bay in 10 to 20 feet. Northern pike action is strong in Rice Bay and Stuntz Bay in 3 to 7 feet, while jumbo perch are hitting at the mouth of Pike Bay or main lake reefs in 5 to 15 feet.
Pike Bay Lodge (218) 753-2430
A jig and minnow is producing walleyes in 10 to 15 feet, with some shallower, along the shoreline breaks and points throughout the lake. There are quite a few big fish being caught, but plenty of keeping-size fish as well.
Walleye reports vary and most anglers are picking off quite a few big fish with some eaters in the mix. A jig and minnow is working best on the points and shoreline breaks in 6 to 9 feet. Low-light periods or windy days have been best, but the wind hasn’t blown much this week. Work those wind-driven areas when it does blow.
Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505
Shriver’s Bait Company (218) 547-2250
Work the shorelines in 8 to 12 feet for walleyes with a slow-presented spinner rig and minnow or anchor over some shallow structure and pitch a jig with a minnow. If you are around the weedy edges of the smaller bays, you will find smallmouth bass and northern pike.
International Falls CVB (800) 325-5766
The ice left the lake four days before the opener so it allowed anglers to get out without any issues. There were some fish in the rivers, but most found good success along the shorelines in 4 to 7 feet. A jig and minnow was the bait of choice. Northern pike reports were limited, but some nice slab crappie were in the mix, caught accidentally by walleye anglers.
Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128
Twin Cities Metro
Panfish continue to be caught in less than 6 feet on most lakes with Bald Eagle and White Bear being most productive. Sucker minnows are turning northern pike in 8 to 10 feet at Lake Jane, Demontreville Lake, and Big Marine Lake. Look for largemouth bass along the shorelines of most lakes, and a jig and minnow is producing consistent walleye action in the Bayport area of the St. Croix River.
Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle (651) 777-2421
Crappies are being caught in 3 to 5 feet, as are sunfish in 8 to 10 feet on Lake Minnewashta and Lake Bavaria. Crappie reports also have been strong from the bays and shorelines on Lake Waconia. Largemouth bass are active in shallow water on most lakes, with Whaletail Lake is giving up a few more bigger fish. Look to Lake Zumbra and Lake Susan with sucker minnows for northern pike in 8 to 10 feet. The creek mouths and current breaks on the Minnesota River are producing a few walleyes.
Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022
A jig and minnow is turning walleyes in 5 to 10 feet on Lake Reno, Mary Lake, Lake Geneva, and Lake Victoria. Crappies are being found in the mud-bottom areas and bays of Lobster Lake, Lake Le Homme Dieu, and north end of Reno. Bass and northern pike action is strong in less than 10 feet on most lakes.
Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle (320) 763-3255
A few walleyes are coming out of Clearwater Lake, Pleasant Lake, and Lake Sylvia in 12 feet – minnows are working best. Crappies and sunfish are biting well in the bays of Sylvia, Pleasant, Lake John, and Cedar Lake. Northern pike and largemouth bass are hitting on the 10- to 12-foot weeds of Pleasant, Sylvia, and John.
Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297
Some walleyes are being caught where the Mississippi River comes into Lake Bemidji. Lake Irving has a decent walleye bite going with jigs and minnows in 8 to 12 feet. Big Turtle Lake and Lake Julia also are producing a few walleyes, especially early in the day.
Dick Beardsley Guide Service (218) 556-7172
Blackduck Lake is giving up walleyes on a jig and fathead minnow in 4 to 8 feet. Northern pike are hitting minnows on Gull Lake and Island Lake in less than 10 feet. Panfish reports have been limited, but look to Gull, Pimushe Lake, and Rabideau Lake in less than 6 feet as water temperatures continue to climb.
Timberline Sports and Tackle (218) 835-4636
Trolling crankbaits at night on the north end of Gull Lake is producing walleyes in less than 10 feet. Golden shiners are turning a few walleyes on North Long Lake, Cullen Lake, and Whitefish Lake in 10 to 14 feet. Crappies also are being found in 10 feet on North Long Lake, Round Lake, and Gull. Sucker minnows under bobbers are producing northern pike on the south end of Gull and main part of North Long in 6 to 10 feet.
S & W Bait & Guide Service/Nisswa Guide League (218) 829-7010
CASS LAKE AREA
Limits of walleyes are being taken with minnows in 6 to 8 feet on Wolf Lake, Lake Andrusia, north end of Kitchi Lake, and the Mississippi River. Lindy Rigs and minnows are turning walleyes in 18 to 20 feet on Cass and Andrusia as well. Cass and Andrusia are also kicking out perch in 6 feet, while crappies are being found in less than 4 feet in Buck Lake or Allen’s Bay on Cass and the reeds on Kitchi.
Sunset Cove Resort (800) 279-4831
The 8- to 12-foot rock piles and weedlines on Green Lake are kicking out walleyes. There’s some evening walleye action on the 8- to 12-foot gravel of North and South Center lakes. Northern pike are biting in the channel between Big and Little Green lakes, while bass are hitting in shallow water on most lakes. Hit the shallow bays or channels for panfish on Chisago Lake, North Lindstrom Lake, and South Lindstrom Lake.
Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334
Serpent Lake, Rabbit Lake, and Nokay Lake are producing walleyes in 3 to 8 feet or 8 to 10 feet on minnows or crankbaits. Anglers fishing from shore at Huntington Pit, Manuel Pit and Pennington Pit or from boats at Portsmouth and Sagamore pits are catching rainbow trout. There’s some evening crappie action in 3 to 6 feet on Rabbit, Serpent, or north ends of Clearwater Lake and Bay Lake.
Oars ‘n Mine Bait and Tackle (218) 546-6912
DETROIT LAKES AREA
Jigs tipped with minnows are turning walleyes in 5 to 7 feet on Lake Sallie, Cotton Lake, Lake Melissa, and Big Detroit Lake. Look for crappies, some in shallow and others in 10 to 12 feet at Acorn Lake, Floyd Lake, and Melissa. Cotton Lake and Lake Lida are giving up largemouth bass in less than 8 feet, while Sallie and Big Floyd Lake are safe bets for northern pike in 10 to 12 feet.
Quality Bait and Tackle (218) 844-2248
Leeches are producing walleyes on Rice Lake in 5 feet, as are chubs in 10 to 12 feet at Island Lake. Boulder Lake and Fish Lake also are giving up walleyes with minnows in 10 feet. Trolling the Park Point area of Lake Superior with stickbaits has produced cohos, lake trout, and a few brown trout. The smelt were in this week and the fish are there gorging on them close to shore.
Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094
EAST CENTRAL MN
Walleyes are hitting minnows on Green Lake and Elk Lake in 4 to 8 feet early and late each day. Look to Blue Lake in less than 5 feet and the narrows on the Briggs Lake Chain for crappies. Sunfish and northern pike reports have been slow.
Tales and Trails Sport Shop (763) 856-3985
The west side of Basswood Lake, specifically towards Louis Narrows, is giving up quite a few big walleyes in the moving water areas with a jig and minnow. Minnows also are turning walleyes at the power dam area on Fall Lake and current areas on White Iron Lake. The Stoney River outlet on Birch Lake is producing walleyes, as is Bald Eagle Lake in shallow water. Frozen smelt or minnows are producing lake trout in 8 to 10 feet on Burntside Lake, and look to the White Iron Chain for northern pike.
The Great Outdoors (218) 365-4744
Crappies are being caught on Lake Emily and Ruth Lake in less than 4 feet. Eagle Lake is producing northern pike in 4 to 6 feet on spoons, but walleye and bluegill reports have been slow.
Redding Sports and Spirits (218) 763-2191
Hall Lake, Budd Lake, Lake Sisseton, Lake George, and Amber Lake are all producing crappies and a few bluegills in 4 to 8 feet. A few perch are being caught on Big Twin Lake in 8 to 12 feet, and the bridge on Tuttle Lake is producing crappies. Trolling live bait on Tuttle Lake has triggered walleyes, while Hall, Budd, and Amber are giving up a few walleyes in less than 8 feet.
Sommer Outdoors (507) 235-5225
Walleye action has been limited to a few fish on Lake Mazaska or Roberds Lake in 10 to 12 feet. Cannon Lake is producing perch in 5 to 8 feet, and Cedar Lake is giving up panfish in 6 to 10 feet. Look to Shields Lake for sunfish in 10 to 12 feet or to Roberds for crappies in less than 6 feet around the docks.
Nagel’s Live Bait (507) 334-8341
GRAND RAPIDS AREA
A jig and minnow is turning walleyes at Big Splithand Lake in 7 to 13 feet, Lake Wabana in 12 to 15 feet, Sugar Lake in 8 to 25 feet, Bowstring Lake in 5 to 12 feet, and on the Mississippi River. Crappies were just starting to move into the boat harbors and bays early this week, so look to lakes Pokegama, Big Splithand, Wabana, Trout, and Swan to be the first to produce panfish.
Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281
GREY EAGLE AREA
Walleye action has been limited, but northern pike are hitting minnows on most lakes in 8 to 12 feet. Crappie action has picked up in the shallow bays or north shorelines of Big Swan Lake, Big Birch Lake, and Mound Lake.
Nancy’s Bait & Tackle (320) 285-2405
Pine Mountain Lake and Baby Lake are giving up walleyes in 10 to 14 feet on crankbaits or minnows. Crappies remain shallow, around the bulrushes or docks at Ten Mile Lake, Birch Lake, Webb Lake, Mule Lake, and Woman Lake. Largemouth bass are hitting in less than 5 feet on Birch and Mule.
Swanson’s Bait and Tackle (218) 675-6176
With just about everyone catching limits of fish it could be one of the best openers in years. Most years, the start of the season on Kab can be a head scratcher, but not this one. Walleyes are being found in most depths and were hungry to say the least. Dock and shoreline anglers seemed to fair best with the bigger fish, while those in a little deeper water were finding more of the eater variety. Shiners are producing more fish, but all minnow types are working with a jig. Jigs under a bobber, over the side of the boat, or pitching the shorelines is working.
Gateway Store (218) 875-2121
The South Fork and South Branch of the Root River remain high and off-colored due to recent rains. Most small creeks and streams are clear and producing brown trout. Caddis and Blue-Wing Olives (BWOs) have been the better flies this week.
Root River Rod Company (507) 467-2101
Crappies continue to be caught in the bays on Girl Lake, Blackwater Lake, Long Lake, Woman Lake, and Mule Lake. A few walleyes are being taken during low-light periods with crankbaits or minnows in shallow water on Little Boy Lake, while smallmouth bass are being caught on the shallow rocks of Woman.
The One Stop (218) 363-2252
MADISON LAKE AREA
Minnows or leeches are producing walleyes in 6 to 8 feet during the evenings or 20 to 25 feet during the day on Madison Lake. The Third Point area on Lake Washington is giving up walleyes during the day in 20 to 22 feet or in 4 to 6 feet during low-light periods. Baker’s Bay on Washington is kicking out crappies and sunfish in 8 to 10 feet, while most lakes are producing crappies in 3 to 6 feet. The west end of Lake Francis is worth hitting for panfish and pike. Some walleyes can be had on the sunken island in 12 to 14 feet.
Corner Bait (507) 243-4464
A jig and minnow is producing walleyes on Big Sandy Lake in 8 to 12 feet. The bigger crappies have started hitting around the docks and in bays on Big Sandy and Lake Minnewawa. Northern pike are hitting minnows on most lakes, but the majority of them have been small.
Willey’s Sport Shop & Spirits (218) 426-3382
Fish Lake and Knife Lake are producing walleyes in 3 to 6 feet, mainly on a jig and minnow or crankbait. Bass and crappie fishing is strong on Fish in shallow water, while Knife and Mud Lake are giving up a mixed bag of panfish in less than 6 feet.
Jerry’s Sport & Bait Shop (320) 679-2151
Most walleyes coming off Big Stone Lake remain rock or shoreline related. Crankbaits or jigs and minnows are working best during the day in 10 to 12 feet or during the evening hours in 3 to 7 feet. Start looking for bass and panfish in shallow water on Big Stone as well.
Artie’s Bait (320) 839-2480
PARK RAPIDS AREA
Most walleyes are being taken with a jig and minnow in 5 to 8 feet on Eighth Crow Wing Lake, Potato Lake, and Boulder Lake. Crappies and sunfish are hitting in the shallow, warm bays of Fifth and Sixth Crow Wing lakes or Long Lake. Bass action is strong in shallow water on Fish Hook Lake and Lake Belle Taine, while Third and Tenth Crow Wing lakes are giving up numbers of northern pike in less than 8 feet.
Delaney’s (218) 732-4281
Smokey Hills Outdoors (218) 237-5099
Look for walleyes in less than 10 feet on Big Pine Lake, Little Pine Lake, Otter Tail Lake, and Rush Lake – crankbaits or jigs and minnows are working best. Crappies and sunfish remain active in shallow water at Rush, Marion Lake, Star Lake, and Dead Lake. Bass reports have been limited, but northern pike are hitting in 8 to 12 feet on most lakes.
Gene’s Sport Shop (218) 346-3355
RED WING AREA
Walleyes and sauger are hitting best at the top end of Lake Pepin at Head of the Lakes and Bay City Flats. Live-bait rigs tipped with leeches or nightcrawlers or leadcore and crankbaits are turning fish in 10 to 14 feet. The marinas and backwater bays off the main river are holding crappies, while cut suckers or crawlers are producing catfish along the current seams.
Four Seasons Sports (651) 388-4334
SAUK CENTRE AREA
Walleyes are being taken with a Lindy Rig and minnow on Sauk Lake 3 to 7 feet. Crappies are hitting in the shallow bays of Sauk, the south bay of Hagen’s/Long Lake, and on Long Bridge Lake in 10 feet. Northern pike are hitting minnows or spoons on most lakes.
Fletcher’s Bait Shop (320) 352-2155
STAPLES/LITTLE FALLS AREA
Walleyes, northern pike, and smallmouth bass are being taken with minnows between the Little Falls Dam and Blanchard Dam on the Mississippi River. Rice/Skunk Lake is giving up northern pike near the dam, while Lake Alexander is producing a few walleyes in 10 to 12 feet. Crappies have continued to hit in the bays and along shorelines on Alexander and Lake Shamineau.
Da Fishin’ Hole (320) 631-0056
Walleye action has been slow throughout the area, but panfish are hitting in the Starbuck Marina and Fish Hatchery Bay area of Lake Minnewaska. The west shore of Lake Emily is producing channel catfish.
Minnewaska Bait and Tackle (320) 239-2239
Walleye reports have been slow, but northern pike are hitting on Lake Sakatah, Lake Tetonka, Gorman Lake, and Lake Francis – most are being taken in 10 feet with sucker minnows or spinnerbaits. The lagoons on Tetonka continue to produce numbers of crappies and sunfish.
Axel’s Tackle Box (507) 213-1873
Big Kandi Lake, Lake Lillian, Lake Minnetoga, and Lake Wagonda are producing walleyes in less than 10 feet – live-bait rigs tipped with minnows or crawlers are working best. A few walleyes are being taken with minnows at South Long Lake, Ringo Lake, Willmar/Foot Lake, and East Solomon Lake in 8 to 15 feet. Panfish reports have been slower in shallow water, while some bass and northern pike are hitting on most lakes in 4 to 10 feet.
Brad’s 71 Bait and Sports (320) 235-4097
Walleyes are being taken with minnows or nightcrawlers along the shallow shorelines of Dead Coon Lake, Current Lake, Lake Sarah, Lake Shetek, Rock Lake, Cottonwood Lake, School Grove Lake, Lady Slipper Lake, and Lake Lac qui Parle. Yankton Lake is giving up crappies and walleyes in shallow water, while Bloody Lake and Sarah are producing crappies in less than 5 feet.
Borch’s Sporting Goods (507) 532-4880