Minnesota Outdoor News Fishing Report – Sept. 7, 2018
LAKE MILLE LACS
Walleyes continue to hit on the mud flats, especially during the evening hours with slip bobbers and leeches. During the day, spinners and crawlers are working best off the edges of the flats. Smallmouth bass and a few walleyes remain active on the 10- to 18-foot rocks. Northern pike are being caught on the weedlines in St. Alban’s Bay, Wigwam Bay, Cove Bay, and Garrison Bay, but muskie reports have been limited.
Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811
Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430
LAKE OF THE WOODS
A mix of spinners and crawlers or crankbaits are producing walleyes in 32 to 34 feet in Big Traverse Bay. Shiners are showing up at the mouth of the Rainy River with some already running up the river so fishing is strong throughout the south shore. On the Rainy River, sturgeon fishing “keep season” is open until Sept 30. Some walleyes are entering the river after shiners, which are starting to come in. At the Northwest Angle, strong numbers of walleyes are being caught on mud flats with bottom bouncers and crawlers on both sides of the border.
Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau (800) 382-FISH
LAKE MINNETONKA AREA
Work the larger bays on Lake Minnetonka in 18 to 25 feet or Medicine Lake and Lake Sarah in 12 to 14 feet for sunfish. The deep weedlines on Lake Independence and Minnetonka remain the best options for muskies with bucktails. Crappies seem to be roaming with pods of fish being found on deep weedlines or deep basin areas of Minnetonka.
Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227
Walleyes are being caught with live-bait rigs and crawlers or crankbaits on the rock piles, flats, and reef edges in 18 to 25 feet. The key is to stay on the move and pick off the aggressive fish in each school. The tops of the rock piles also are holding smallmouth bass, most of which are being taken with jigs and crawlers. Muskie anglers are seeing fish, but the number of fish hooked hasn’t been as good as last week. The mouths of Armstrong Bay, Mud Creek Bay, and Canfield Bay are producing bluegills.
Pike Bay Lodge (218) 753-2430
Walleyes are hitting crankbaits on top of the bars and flats in 14 to 17 feet. Northern pike action has been excellent with bigger fish being taken on spoons or crankbaits along the 12- to 14-foot weeds. A jig and minnow is producing perch in 12 to 16 feet on Sugar Point, Raven’s Point, and Rich’s Townsite.
Trolling crankbaits at night in 7 to 9 feet has produced walleyes off Pine Point and west of Goose Island. If the wind is blowing, there is some daytime walleye action with crankbaits off First and Second Duck points in 8 feet. Work the cabbage in Steamboat Bay or off Mound’s Point and the rocks on the south side of Otter Tail Point and Stony Point for muskies.
Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505
Shriver’s Bait Company (218) 547-2250
Walleyes continue to be found on reefs or mid-lake humps in 20 to 36 feet. A jig and minnow has been working best, but Lindy Rigs and minnows are a strong second choice. Crappies remain in deeper water along breaklines and submerged brush in the 18- to 30-foot range. Some bass are being caught in 12 to 25 feet on plastics, while others are being caught along shoreline points and rocks.
International Falls CVB (800) 325-5766
The fall walleye action is not quite here, as many anglers this weekend struggled to find numbers. As water temperatures cool, trolling crankbaits or live-bait rigs in 4 to 10 feet or working the deeper humps in 12 to 14 feet will put fish in the box. Hitting nice weather with light winds will be key, as it is every fall.
Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128
Twin Cities Metro
The current breaks on the St. Croix River are producing catfish, walleyes, and white bass. Northern pike are hitting sucker minnows on the 12- to 16-foot weedlines of Powers Lake, Silver Lake, and White Bear Lake. Muskies continue to be taken with bucktails on White Bear Lake during low-light periods in less than 12 feet, bass fishing remains strong on most lakes, but panfish action has slowed.
Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle (651) 777-2421
Look for bigger northern pike to hit sucker minnows on the 16- to 18-foot weedlines of Wasserman Lake and Whaletail Lake. On the Minnesota River, some walleyes have started being caught in front of the creek inlets and catfish continue to hit nightcrawlers in most deep holes. Panfish action remains slow, but largemouth bass are an easy catch on the shallow and deep weeds of most lakes.
Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022
Most established weedlines on the reefs such as Keg’s, Anderson’s, Center, and North continue to hold panfish and bass. Topwater baits and bucktails are triggering muskies on the weedlines around Reinkie’s to the Carp Trap. A jig and fathead minnow is turning a few walleyes during low-light periods in 12 to 14 feet.
Mases In Towne Marina (952) 442-2096
Walleyes are being caught with nightcrawlers on Lake Andrew in 18 to 22 feet and Lake Mary in 12 to 15 feet. Lake Ida and Lake Miltona are producing walleyes in 30 feet or more during the day with live bait or on top of the flats with shallow-running crankbaits at night. Look for crappies on the 12- to 17-foot weedlines of Lake Le Homme Dieu, Lake Carlos, Lake Geneva, and Lake Darling. Bass and pike action remains strong on the shallow and deep weedlines of most lakes. Muskie and goose hunting reports have been limited.
Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle (320) 763-3255
Bass and pike action is strong on the 12- to 16-foot weedlines of lakes John, Cedar, Clearwater, and Granite. Look for sunfish during the day and crappies each evening along the 10- to 14-foot weedlines of Sugar Lake, French Lake, Cedar Lake, and Sylvia. Nightcrawlers are turning a few walleyes in 16 to 24 feet at Clearwater, Cedar, and Sugar. There has been some good goose hunting success and some poor reports, it just depended on the field. Dove hunting has been very good on short grain fields and sand pit areas.
Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297
BATTLE LAKE AREA
Minnows or Jigging Raps are turning walleyes on the 20-foot humps during the day, as is trolling crankbaits at night in 9 feet on West Battle Lake, Otter Tail Lake, Rush Lake, and Fish Lake. Look for sunfish in 10 to 15 feet and suspended crappies over the 20-foot weeds on Elbow Lake, Clitherall Lake, West Battle, and Rush. Bass fishing remains strong with spinnerbaits in 12 to 15 feet at Stalker Lake, Bass Lake, and Donald Lake. Muskies continue to be taken with bucktails in 18 to 22 feet on West Battle. Goose hunters are reporting very few birds in the area.
Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596
Not much has changed since last week. Water temps are hanging in the upper 60s, and the walleye bite has started to change to a jig and minnow bite. Look to Lake Bemidji, Gull Lake, Wolf Lake, Turtle River Lake, and Lake Andrusia for walleyes. Crappies are still being caught off the cabbage, but you’ll also find some crappies sliding into deeper water and suspending. Pike action is good with bigger fish being caught along the deep weed edges.
Dick Beardsley Guide Service (218) 556-7172
Walleyes are hitting a jig and minnow on Blackduck Lake, Island Lake, and Gull Lake in 12 to 20 feet. A few bluegills and crappies are being taken in the 12- to 16-foot cabbage of Gilstead Lake and Gull. Bear hunting reports have been mixed with some success reported in areas that held fewer acorns. Goose numbers appear to be down.
Timberline Sports and Tackle (218) 835-4636
Walleyes are being found in 15 to 28 feet and hitting minnows or crawlers on Gull Lake, North Long Lake, and Whitefish Lake. Northern pike are scattered on the 8- to 20-foot weedlines and being caught with sucker minnows at North Long, Whitefish, and Pelican Lake. Bigger bass continue to be found on the deep weedlines on North Long and the north end of Gull. Sunfish action has picked up in 6 to 10 feet, and crappies are going in 12 to 18 feet at Cullen Lake, Lake Edwards, and Gull.
S & W Bait & Guide Service/Nisswa Guide League (218) 829-7010
CASS LAKE AREA
Muskie action remains strong with bucktails on the main lake rock bars and flats of Cass Lake. Trolling crankbaits in 6 to 8 feet continues to produce walleyes throughout Cass Lake – look for shallow weed edges. You’ll find nice perch mixed in with the walleyes, while Allen’s Bay on Cass is producing bluegills in 8 feet. There seems to be a few geese in the area and hunters that got on the harvested, small grain fields had the most success.
Sunset Cove Resort (800) 279-4831
Green Lake is kicking out crappies and sunfish in 16 feet. You’ll also find sunfish on the 12- to 14-foot weedlines or in 15 to 25 feet on Chisago Lake, North and South Lindstrom lakes, and South Center Lake. Trolling crankbaits during low-light periods has triggered a few walleyes in 10 to 16 feet on Green, North Center, and South Center. Spinnerbaits or crankbaits will produce pike and bass on the weedlines of most lakes. Goose hunting success has been light, and most groups aren’t finding many birds.
Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334
Look for walleyes north of the Highway 6 Bridge, panfish on the rice beds south of the bridge, and channel catfish in the deep holes of the Mississippi River. Largemouth bass are tight to the weed edges and smallmouth are on the 18- to 24-foot rocks of Serpent Lake. Clearwater Lake and Nokay Lake are giving up a few walleyes on crankbaits in 6 to 8 feet or a jig and minnow in 24 to 30 feet. The weedlines on Portage Lake are holding crappies and sunfish. The goose and bear seasons started slow based on anecdotal reports.
Oars ‘n Mine Bait and Tackle (218) 546-6912
DETROIT LAKES AREA
Walleyes are being caught on Cotton Lake, Big Cormorant Lake, and Big Detroit Lake with nightcrawlers in 20 to 25 feet. Look for sunfish in 10 to 14 feet and crappies in 15 to 17 feet on Big Floyd Lake, Little Floyd Lake, Lake Melissa, Tamarack Lake, and Little Detroit Lake. Muskie reports have been best off the weedlines of Big Detroit with bucktails. There hasn’t been any goose action worth noting.
Quality Bait and Tackle (218) 844-2248
Minnows are producing walleyes and crappies in 16 to 20 feet on Island Lake, while Fish Lake is giving up walleyes and bluegills in 12 to 15 feet on crawlers. Trolling spoons from the mouth of the Lester River to the Pumphouse on Lake Superior is producing lake trout and king salmon at 100 to 150 feet. Walleyes are being taken with stickbaits on the south shore from the St. Louis River to the Brule River in 20 feet. Bear harvest and activity at baits has been mixed from hunters early this season – 14 were registered as of Tuesday morning.
Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094
EAST CENTRAL MN
Sucker minnows continue to produce northern pike on Little Ann Lake and Eagle Lake in 10 to 14 feet. Throw topwater baits early and late each day on the weedlines of Little Elk, Green Lake, and Blue Lake for largemouth bass. A lack of harvested farm fields is limiting goose-hunting success.
Tales and Trails Sport Shop (763) 856-3985
Walleyes are hitting minnows in 10 feet during the evening hours on Shagawa Lake and Farm Lake. Walleyes also can be had with nightcrawlers in 13 to 18 feet at Crooked Lake, Ensign Lake, Birch Lake, and Basswood Lake. On Bear Head Lake, walleyes are biting in 20 feet, as are smallmouth bass and panfish in 4 to 6 feet. You’ll find crappies suspended at 17 feet over deep water on White Iron Lake and on the 14-foot mud at Fall Lake. Bear hunting success has been limited to start the season.
The Great Outdoors (218) 365-4744
Sunfish have started hitting in 8 to 10 feet at Perry Lake and spoons are turning northern pike on Ruth Lake in 10 to 12 feet. Trolling crankbaits after dark over deep water on Roosevelt Lake has produced walleyes – these fish are suspended. Crappies are being found on the north end of Lake Washburn in 8 to 12 feet. Goose and bear hunting reports have been light, and bear hunters aren’t seeing much activity at baits, likely due to a healthy acorn crop.
Redding Sports and Spirits (218) 763-2191
You’ll find crappies in 8 to 12 feet on Cedar Lake, French Lake, and Lake Mazaska. Sunfish are being caught in 6 to 10 feet on Cedar, Hunts Lake, and Shields Lake or in 12 to 15 feet on French. Minnows are producing perch on the 10- to 12-foot humps of Shields or Cannon Lake, and some walleyes are being taken below the dams on the Cannon River. Goose hunting has been poor due to a lack of birds.
Nagel’s Live Bait (507) 334-8341
FERGUS FALLS AREA
Crankbaits are producing walleyes on the 5- to 10-foot inside weedlines of Ten Mile Lake, Fish Lake, and Eagle Lake. Work the weed edges or 16- to 18-foot rock piles with blade baits for muskies on Pelican Lake. Crappies are being found suspended in the main basin areas of Long Lake and Middle Lake, while bass and pike reports remain strong throughout the area. A decent supply of local geese provided good opening weekend shooting, but reports slowed after Sunday.
Little Chief Outpost (218) 998-5050
GRAND MARAIS AREA
Walleyes are hitting minnows on Gunflint Lake in 25 to 30 feet, Cascade Lake in 8 to 14 feet, Poplar Lake in 13 to 18 feet, and Devil Track Lake in 12 to 15 feet. Lake trout are being caught at 30 to 40 feet on Loon Lake and Duncan Lake, or Greenwood Lake at 30 feet – smelt or spoons are both working. Rainbow trout are being taken with crawlers in 12 to 18 feet at Leo Lake and 15 feet at Trout Lake. Hit the rocky shorelines on Hungry Jack Lake in 6 to 8 feet and Poplar in 12 to 14 feet for smallmouth bass. Bear hunting reports have been limited, baits don’t seem to be getting hit as much as last year, and the harvest was down through the first weekend.
Buck’s Hardware (218) 387-2280
GREY EAGLE AREA
Sunfish started hitting on the east side of St. Anna (Roony) Lake, Big Swan Lake, Lilly Lake, and Long Lake along the shallow weed edges. Hit the 6- to 10-foot weedlines on Mound Lake for crappies and Pine Lake for sunfish and crappies. Walleye activity has been slow, but northern pike are hitting minnows on Big Birch Lake, Swan, and Buck Lake in less than 12 feet. Goose hunting reports have been poor and bird numbers appear down compared to last year.
Nancy’s Bait & Tackle (320) 285-2405
Topwater baits are producing muskies in less than 10 feet on the flats and weeds of Little Boy Lake, Wabedo Lake, and Baby Lake. Smallmouth bass reports have been strong with swim baits at Woman Lake and Ten Mile Lake in 5 to 8 feet during the evening hours, while largemouth are an easy catch in the cabbage areas of most lakes. Look for walleyes to hit crankbaits during the evening hours in 5 to 10 feet on Woman, Little Boy, and Baby. Crappies are being found on the deep cabbage edges of Stoney Lake and Birch Lake. Goose hunting reports have been mixed, and bears seem to be hitting baits despite a bumper acorn crop.
Swanson’s Bait and Tackle (218) 675-6176
Largemouth bass are being taken with plastics on the 6- to 12-foot weedlines of Floodwood Lake. Hit Dewey Lake for crappies in 15 to 18 feet and Stingy Lake for bass and northern pike along the 8- to 12-foot weedlines. Opening weekend bear hunting reports have been light.
Lucky 7 General Store (218) 254-7168
Bear hunting began with mixed results. Most baits are being hit regularly with most hunters holding out for a bigger bear. As for the fishing, it’s been tough due to multiple weather fronts that have fish scattered. It has been the toughest week of walleye fishing of the year so far. The deep structure and deep reefs are your best bets for a few more walleyes with a jig and minnow.
Gateway Store (218) 875-2121
With heavy rains early this week it was again tough to determine how high and dirty area streams are running. Look for the clear water areas that exist or wait a few days for other locations to clear up. Minnows, Rapalas, and streamers tend to work best during these high, cloudy water periods.
Root River Rod Company (507) 467-2101
MADISON LAKE AREA
Lake Washington is giving up walleyes on crankbaits in 8 to 10 feet and crappies and bluegills in 10 to 12 feet around Grassy Island. Hit the outlets on the west end of Duck Lake for crappies and bluegills in 4 to 6 feet or the northeast corner for bass and pike in 4 to 8 feet. On Madison Lake, the Miller’s Point area is producing walleyes in 10 to 12 feet. Some geese were shot opening weekend, but bird numbers appear to be down.
Corner Bait (507) 243-4464
Sunfish and crappies are being caught in 4 to 6 feet on Knife Lake, Ann Lake, and Mud Lake. Pike and bass reports continue to be slow. Goose hunting started on a decent note for most groups – though limits of birds were rare, most people report seeing geese. A handful of bears have been shot, but most hunters report an abundance of acorns.
Jerry’s Sport & Bait Shop (320) 679-2151
PARK RAPIDS AREA
Work the cabbage beds on Portage Lake and Fish Hook Lake for panfish. Walleyes are being caught at Long Lake and Fish Hook Lake on live-bait rigs and redtails in 20 to 24 feet. The 14- to 17-foot cabbage edges on Many Point Lake and Big Mantrap Lake continue to produce muskies, while Tenth Crow Wing Lake and Many Point are giving up pike on sucker minnows in 12 to 16 feet. Bear hunter success has been limited. The number of geese in the area appears down.
Delaney’s (218) 732-4281
Smokey Hills Outdoors (218) 237-5099
RED WING AREA
Crappie action continues to be strong in most bays and flooded timber areas. Walleye reports have dipped a bit, but if you cover water with a crankbait in the Bay City Flats area of Lake Pepin, you’ll find some fish in less than 10 feet. Use cut bait for flatheads and crawlers for channel catfish below the dam on the Mississippi River. Goose hunting reports have been poor, and bird numbers are down.
Four Seasons Sports (651) 388-4334
RICHMOND/ST. CLOUD AREA
Look for sunfish in 9 to 15 feet on Horseshoe Lake, Schneider Lake, Becker Lake, Rice Lake, Long Lake, Cedar Island Lake, and Pearl Lake. The weedlines on Grand Lake and Pearl are producing pike, largemouth bass, and crappies. Walleye action has been slow throughout the area, and goose hunting reports have been limited.
Channel Marine and Sports (320) 597-5975
SAUK CENTRE AREA
Sunfish are hitting on Maple Lake in 12 feet and Lake Osakis on the 12- to 20- foot weedlines from Two Mile Bar up to Miller’s Bay. Walleye action has picked up with minnows or nightcrawlers on Sauk Lake in 6 to 12 feet and Osakis in 18 to 40 feet. Hit long Bridge Lake in 12 to 14 feet or Osakis in 12 to 25 feet for crappies. The weedlines on Long Bridge and Osakis are safe bets for pike. Goose reports have been mixed with some groups doing well and others having no success.
Fletcher’s Bait Shop (320) 352-2155
The sunfish bite has shown no signs of slowing up on Lake Minnewaska in 12 to 14 feet. Smallmouth and largemouth bass continue to bite, as do crappies on the Glenwood end of Minnewaska in 14 to 16 feet. Walleye action has been limited to a few fish after dark on crankbaits in 9 to 12 feet. Based on hunter accounts, the goose opener was a non-event locally.
Minnewaska Bait and Tackle (320) 239-2239
Anglers fishing from shore at Willmar/Foot Lake are catching panfish. Hit the 10- to 14-foot weedlines on Eagle Lake for bass and northern pike. Diamond Lake is giving up a few sunfish and walleyes in 14 to 18 feet, while Green Lake is producing some walleyes in 25 to 35 feet and a few sunfish in 10 to 15 feet. Goose and dove hunter numbers were down a lot during opening weekend and those that went struggled.
Brad’s 71 Bait and Sports (320) 235-4097
Walleyes continue to be caught on a variety of presentations at Marsh Lake, Cottonwood Lake, Rock Lake, School Grove Lake, and Dead Coon Lake in 6 to 10 feet. It sounded as if bird hunters are finding more doves than geese, but the right field did produce good numbers of both.
Borch’s Sporting Goods (507) 532-4880