Minnesota Outdoor News Fishing Report – July 27, 2017
LAKE MILLE LACS
The daytime walleye bite has slowed a bit, but fish continue to be caught on the mud flats in 25 feet or more on most forms of live-bait rigs. Work the tops of the flats during the evening hours with a slip bobber and leech for decent walleye action as well. The 8- to 22-foot rock piles and rock points are producing smallmouth bass and some walleyes on plastics. Muskie reports have been slower this week and the fish seen are coming off main-lake structure rather than shorelines.
Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811
Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430
LAKE OF THE WOODS
Drifting and trolling spinners and crawlers in the morning/evenings has produced numbers of walleyes. Trolling crankbaits on the mud in the afternoon has been really good in 24- to 32-feet. On the Rainy River, sturgeon fishing “keep season” is open until Sept 30. River clarity is still chocolate milk, with very little visibility. Finding clean water for pike and smallies will increase odds, and the tributaries into Rainy are a good starting point. At the Northwest Angle, walleyes are hitting on both the Minnesota and Canada side, with most fish around structure. Some nice walleyes are being found in shallower water, 16 to 20 feet and also out deep in 26 to 30 feet. Spinners over rocks and reefs continues to put fish in the live well. Muskies are being caught with bucktails on rocks and weeds.
Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau (800) 382-FISH
LAKE MINNETONKA AREA
Bass and sunfish are being found tight to the deep weedlines on Lake Minnetonka and Lake Independence. Look for crappies on top of the milfoil and northern pike are hitting spinners and suckers in 15 to 18 feet on Minnetonka as well. Muskie and walleye action has been slow.
Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227
Nightcrawlers or leeches are producing walleyes in 20 to 25 feet off the shoreline breaks and rock reefs – look shallower if the wind is blowing. Northern pike action has slowed a bit, but muskies are being caught with bucktails on the rock points and shallow rock areas. Smallmouth bass also remain active on the shorelines and rock areas.
Pike Bay Lodge (218) 753-2430
Walleyes are being caught on spinner or live-bait rigs tipped with crawlers and leeches on the bars in 14 to 20 feet and the 20- to 30-foot humps on the northwest end of the lake. Bigger perch are being pulled from 16 to 20 feet off Raven’s Point – locate clouds of baitfish and you’ll find nice perch. Trolling spoons or crankbaits in 10 to 15 feet has produced northern pike.
Muskie action has improved quite a bit from last week with good reports of active fish coming out of Portage Bay, Sucker Bay, Agency Bay, and the Two Points area. Walleyes are tough to catch during the day, but you will hook a few during low-light periods with slip bobbers and leeches or spinners and crawlers off Sand Point and Cedar Point in 10 to 14 feet. Trolling crankbaits in these areas after dark also has produced some walleyes. Find the cabbage beds in most bays and you’ll catch bluegills and bass.
Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505
Shriver’s Bait Company (218) 547-2250
Walleyes are being caught on the main lake reef tops from 15 to 20 feet using jigs, Lindy Rigs, and slip bobbers. Minnows and leeches have both been working well. The 5- to 8-foot weed edges also remain a productive option on spinners with minnows or crawler harnesses. Look for crappies on the shoreline breaks and sunken brush piles in the 18- to 28-foot range. Smallmouth bass remain active with small fish coming off most rocky shorelines, while boulder/weed combinations have been the key for larger fish. Northern pike action has been best in the 15- to 25-foot range along deeper weed edges.
International Falls CVB (800) 325-5766
When the winds lay down for a day or two the shoreline bite in 3 to 7 feet picks up for walleye. If the shallows are churned up, then the rock humps in 8 to 14 feet are the better option. The 12- to 14-foot mud flats have some nice fish going also. Trolling cranks or live bait rigs to cover water is best no matter what depth you’re targeting.
Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128
Twin Cities Metro
Northern pike are being caught with sucker minnows on Lake Auburn, Pierson Lake, Steiger Lake, and Ann Lake in 8 to 12 feet. You’ll find sunfish and crappies in 11 feet on Hydes Lake and water levels on the Minnesota River have come down enough that anglers have started to fish it again.
Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022
Walleye action has slowed a bit, but some are being caught on Prior Lake with crawlers in 15 to 20 feet during the day or with crankbaits during low-light periods in 10 to 12 feet. Panfish and largemouths remain weed-related and active on Lake O’Dowd, Prior, and Spring Lake. Sucker minnows are turning pike on the weedlines of Prior, too.
Prior Lake Bait & Tackle (952) 447-6096
Muskie reports have improved with fish being seen on North Reef, the swimming beach area, and north side of the island. Crankbaits or a jig and fathead minnow continue to provide decent walleye action in 17 to 22 feet. Bass and panfish are being caught on the shallow and deep vegetation, shorelines, and the weeds on most reefs.
Mase’s In Towne Marina (952) 442-2096
There’s some evening crappie action on the 12- to 15-foot weedlines of Lake Geneva, Lake Darling, Lake Carlos, Lake Le Homme Dieu, and Lake Ida. Walleye reports also have been best early and late each day with crawlers on Lake Miltona in 14 to 18 feet or Ida in 20 to 22 feet. Muskies have become a bit more aggressive on the cabbage beds and points of Miltona.
Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle (320) 763-3255
BATTLE LAKE AREA
Walleyes have moved deep, 20 to 35 feet, and hitting crawlers during the day or crankbaits after dark in 8 to 10 feet at West Battle Lake, Otter Tail Lake, and Rush Lake. You’ll find suspended sunfish and crappies on the 15-foot weeds at Fish Lake, Bass Lake (by Underwood), Silver Lake, West Battle, and Rush. Troll sucker minnows on the 10- to 15-foot weedlines of Donald Lake, West Battle, Otter Tail, and Fiske Lake for northern pike. Bass action remains strong on the deep weedlines of East Battle Lake, West Battle, Silver, Fiske, and Buchanan Lake. Casting Jakes over 15 to 20 feet has produced a few muskies on West Battle.
Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596
The walleye bite has slowed a bit, but if you’re willing to work at it, you’ll catch some fish. Lake Bemidji continues to put out walleyes on jigs tipped with minnows, leeches, and crawlers. Live-bait and spinner rigs also are producing fish. Wolf Lake, Lake Plantagenet, and Gull Lake are worth noting for walleyes as well. Crappies and bluegills are still going strong on and around the deeper cabbage. Bass fishing continues to be excellent on the deep weeds with plastics. Muskie action is picking up, but still more follows than catches.
Dick Beardsley Guide Service (218) 556-7172
Blackduck Lake, Round Lake, and Island Lake are kicking out walleyes in 10 to 14 feet on slip bobbers and leeches during the evening hours or live-bait rigs and crawlers during the day. Gull Lake, Pimushe Lake, and Gilstead Lake continue to produce crappies and bluegills in 10 to 15 feet.
Timberline Sports and Tackle (218) 835-4636
You’ll find sunfish in 6 to 8 feet and some suspended crappies on the deep weedlines of North Long, Nisswa Lake, Upper Gull Lake, and Cullen Lake. North Long Lake, Whitefish Lake, and Gull Lake are giving up walleyes on leeches or redtails in 12 to 15 feet or 28 to 32 feet. Northern pike and bass remain active on the 12- to 15-foot weedlines of most lakes.
S & W Bait & Guide Service/Nisswa Guide League (218) 829-7010
CASS LAKE AREA
Spinner rigs are turning walleyes during the early morning hours on Cedar Bar and Deadman’s Bar on Cass Lake and LeRoy’s Bar on Pike Bay Lake. Trolling crankbaits on the 8-foot sand continues to produce walleyes after dark on Cass as well. The docks with 6- to 8-feet of water under them are producing crappies and the reeds are holding nice perch on Wolf Lake. The west side of Star Island on Cass is a safe bet for bluegills, and muskie action has been best during the evening hours with black bucktails around the cabbage.
Sunset Cove Resort (800) 279-4831
Look for sunfish in the 12- to 15-foot weeds and crappies suspended on the 15- to 20-foot weed edges of Chisago Lake, North Center Lake, South Center Lake, North Lindstrom Lake, and South Lindstrom Lake. Crawlers or leeches are turning walleyes in 15 feet on Green Lake, North Center, and South Center. Most lakes are producing pike and bass on the 12- to 15-foot weedlines.
Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334
DETROIT LAKES AREA
Walleyes are being found in 20 to 24 feet on Big Detroit Lake and Big Cormorant Lake. Hit Cotton Lake and Floyd Lake for crappies and sunfish in 14 to 18 feet. Bad Medicine Lake started giving up rainbow trout, most of which are suspended over deep water. Lakes such as Sallie, Floyd, and Little Detroit are producing largemouth bass and Big Detroit remains the area’s best muskie option.
Quality Bait and Tackle (218) 844-2248
Nightcrawlers are producing walleyes in 15 feet and bluegills in the 6- to 8-foot weeds of Fish Lake. Look to the shorelines and shallow structure for smallmouth bass or walleyes in 18 to 20 feet on Island Lake. Lake trout and salmon reports off Lake Superior continue to be best north of Two Harbors in the top 50 feet of the water column.
Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094
EAST CENTRAL MN
Look for crappies in 10 to 14 feet on Lori Lake or Lewis Lake and sunfish in 7 to 14 feet at Blue Lake, Elk Lake, and Little Ann Lake. Bass and pike are hitting sucker minnows or topwater baits on the weedlines of Birch Lake, Fremont Lake, and Green Lake. Hit the Rum and Mississippi rivers for smallmouth bass.
Tales and Trails Sport Shop (763) 856-3985
Leeches, crawlers, and minnows are turning walleyes on the reef edges in 16 to 20 feet or the 6- to 8-foot weeds at Birch Lake, Basswood Lake, Shagawa Lake, Fall Lake, and White Iron Lake. Trolling small spoons on Burntside Lake has produced a few lake trout about 40 to 45 feet down over deep water. Smallmouth bass are hitting topwater baits on the weedbeds of Bear Island Lake, Farm Lake, Moose Lake Chain, and White Iron. Bluegills are being found on the cabbage beds of Johnson Lake, Birch Lake, White Iron.
The Great Outdoors (218) 365-4744
Walleyes are being found suspended and hitting crankbaits over the deepest parts of Roosevelt Lake at night. Look to Washburn Lake for suspended crappies over 20 feet, and northern pike are hitting crankbaits in 10 to 12 feet on Stark Lake. Lawrence Lake is producing largemouth bass in the 8- to 10-foot weeds or lily pads.
Redding Sports and Spirits (218) 763-2191
Tuttle Lake continues to produce walleyes on crankbaits and planer boards in 4 to 6 feet. Amber Lake, Hall Lake, Budd Lake, and Lake Sisseton are giving up crappies in 4 to 6 feet or the 12- to 15-foot breaks. You’ll find bluegills on George Lake, Budd and Sisseton in 4 to 6 feet. Sisseton and George also are producing largemouth bass and channel catfish remain active during the evening hours on Budd, Sisseton, and George.
Sommer Outdoors (507) 235-5225
Crappies, sunfish, and bass are hitting on Cedar Lake in 8 to 12 feet and Lake Mazaska in 10 to 15 feet. Look for suspended crappies on French Lake over 20 feet and Roberds Lake is producing sunfish and crappies on the 8- to 10-foot rocks. Troll spoons or crankbaits on Shields Lake for northern pike and you’ll pull a mixed bag of fish below the dam on the Cannon River.
Nagel’s Live Bait (507) 334-8341
FERGUS FALLS AREA
Crappies, bluegills, and largemouth bass are hitting on North Turtle Lake in 10 to 12 feet. Walleyes are being taken at night with crankbaits on Pomme de Terre Lake and Stalker Lake in 8 to 12 feet. Hit Swan Lake and Wall Lake with spinnerbaits or spoons for northern pike at 12 to 15 feet.
Little Chief Outpost (218) 998-5050
GRAND MARAIS AREA
Walleyes are hitting crawlers or leeches in 18 to 25 feet on Saganaga Lake, 15 to 20 feet on Sea Gull Lake, and Devil Fish Lake in 14 to 17 feet. Lakes such as Devil Track, Poplar, and Hungry Jack are producing smallmouth bass in 4 to 12 feet. Esther Lake and Musquash Lake are kicking out splake with crawlers in 10 to 14 feet, while lake trout are going on Greenwood Lake in 20 to 30 feet and Sea Gull at 35 to 40 feet. On Lake Superior, lake trout are being caught over 150 to 200 feet and coho salmon are near the surface over 150 feet.
Buck’s Hardware (218) 387-2280
GREY EAGLE AREA
Hit Big Swan Lake in 15 feet, Mound Lake in 15 to 20 feet, and Moose Lake in 12 to 15 feet for sunfish and crappies. Big Birch Lake is kicking out crappies in 18 to 22 and sunfish in 12 to 16 feet. Look for a few walleyes on Big Birch in 18 to 25 feet and Sauk Lake in less than 15 feet – leeches and crawlers are both working.
Nancy’s Bait & Tackle (320) 285-2405
Smallmouth bass are hitting topwater baits on Little Boy Lake, Portage Lake, Baby Lake, and Stoney Lake during the morning hours and largemouth bass are weed-related and active on most lakes. Walleyes are being taken with spinners and crawlers during the day in 17 to 22 feet or with a jig and leech in the 10- to 12-foot cabbage early in the morning on Woman Lake, Ten Mile Lake, and Baby. Muskie reports have improved with bucktails or topwater baits on Wabedo Lake and Little Boy. Look for crappies on the 10- to 15-foot cabbage beds of Birch Lake, Stoney, and Woman.
Swanson’s Bait and Tackle (218) 675-6176
Walleyes are scattered on the edges of reefs in larger numbers, but if the wind is blowing, work the wind blown weed edges and shorelines. On Kabetogama, a Lindy and leech or crawler is working well, while down towards Namakan minnows seem to be the preferred bait. A jig and minnow was still producing a lot of fish last week, and staying mobile is key looking for active fish. Work depths from 8- to 30-feet in Lost Bay or the mid-lake reefs. Same old story for pike and smallmouth bass except start looking for cooler water. They are starting to show up in spring fed bays where the water temps can be quite cooler. Perch are more common now that the reef bite has picked up.
Gateway Store (218) 875-2121
Stream conditions remain clear and good for fishing. Trico’s have been hatching during the morning hours on the South Fork and South Branch of the Root River so match those with your dry flies. The midday dry fly pattern has been ants and grasshoppers on most streams. Poppers are producing smallmouth bass on the Middle and Lower branches of the Root River.
Root River Rod Company (507) 467-2101
Jiggin’ Raps are producing walleyes on the deep humps of Little Boy Lake and Big Boy Lake. Look to the deep weeds on Webb Lake, Widow Lake, Thunder Lake, Lake Inguadona, and Big Boy for crappies and bluegills. Muskie action has improved on the sharp, shoreline breaks of Lake Wabedo and Baby Lake. Largemouth bass remain active on most lakes along the deep weeds during the day or the shoreline weeds each evening.
The One Stop (218) 363-2252
Sunfish are being caught in less than 6 feet on Ann Lake, Fish Lake, and Knife Lake. Sucker minnows under a bobber are producing pike on Knife in 6 feet and largemouth bass are hitting on most lakes in shallow water.
Jerry’s Sport & Bait Shop (320) 679-2151
Spinners and crawlers are turning walleyes north of Mallard Point on Big Stone Lake in 12 feet. The Goose Island to Shady Beach stretch of Big Stone is giving up perch in 10 to 13 feet, and bluegills continue to be found around the lake in 4 to 6 feet.
Artie’s Bait (320) 839-2480
PARK RAPIDS AREA
Walleyes continue to be caught with spinners and crawlers on the 18- to 24-foot weedlines of Long Lake, Fish Hook Lake, and Lake Belle Taine. The Crow Wing Chain, Boulder Lake, and Fish Hook are safe bets for crappies and sunfish on most points and cabbage beds. Muskie action has picked up with bucktails or topwater baits on Many Point Lake and Big Mantrap Lake.
Delaney’s (218) 732-4281
Smokey Hills Outdoors (218) 237-5099
RICHMOND/ST. CLOUD AREA
Rice Lake, Eden Lake, Browns Lake, Long Lake, Horseshoe Lake, and Cedar Island Lake are giving up sunfish in 6 to 12 feet and some crappies in slightly deeper water. Walleyes continue to be caught with crawlers in 6 to 10 feet on Lake Koronis, Rice, and Horseshoe. Northern pike and largemouth bass reports remain strong on the weedlines of most lakes.
Channel Marine and Sports (320) 597-5975
STAPLES/LITTLE FALLS AREA
Sunfish and some crappies are being caught on the 8- to 15-foot weedlines of Beauty Lake, Green Prairie Lake, Fish Trap Lake, and Nokasippi Lake. The Mississippi River is kicking out catfish and smallmouth bass, while northern pike remain active on the weedlines of most lakes.
Da Fishin’ Hole (320) 631-0056
Consistent sunfish action continues throughout Lake Minnewaska in 12 feet and you’ll find suspended crappies over 15 feet on the Glenwood of the lake. Minnewaska also is giving up a few walleyes in 20 feet or more, while Pelican Lake continues to crappies in 12 to 15 feet.
Minnewaska Bait and Tackle (320) 239-2239
Nightcrawlers or leeches are turning walleyes in 15 to 20 feet early and late each day on Nest Lake, Eagle Lake, and Diamond Lake. On Green Lake, walleyes are hitting on the 25- to 35-foot structure during the day and you’ll pluck smallmouth and a few walleyes off the 10- to 15-foot rocks. The 10- to 15-foot weedlines on most lakes are giving up panfish, bass, and northern pike.
Brad’s 71 Bait and Sports (320) 235-4097
Water levels remain high on most lakes so fishing from a boat remains difficult. Anglers fishing from shore are catching walleyes, perch, and crappies on Lake Shetek and Lake Sarah. School Grove Lake and Rock Lake are giving up walleyes for those fishing from shore as well.
Borch’s Sporting Goods (507) 532-4880