Minnesota Outdoor News Fishing Report – Feb. 8, 2019

Great Eight

LAKE MILLE LACS        

East – Walleye action has slowed a bit, but fish continue to be caught through the changing weather patterns. The deep mud and gravel areas have been best during the day, while there is some evening activity on the 16-foot rocks and other shallow structure. Some nice perch are being found on the north end breaks and the north end mud flats are producing tullibees.

Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811

West – Anglers report seeing plenty of fish on their electronics, but the bite has been more difficult this week. Work the edges of the mud flats during midday hours and slide on top of them during low-light periods. The 14- to 18-foot rocks have provided better walleye action at night. You’ll find a few perch and tullibees mixed in on the mud flats.

Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430

LAKE OF THE WOODS

Most anglers are fishing 12 to 15 miles out, in 30 to 32 feet, for walleyes and sauger along the south shore and the bite remains good. Some pods of fish are being found closer to shore away from traffic. On the Rainy River, reports of morning/evening walleye action continue on the river and Four Mile Bay. The area around International Bridge in Baudette is not safe due to construction of new bridge. At the Northwest Angle, walleyes, sauger, perch, northern pike, tullibees, and eelpout are coming from 24 to 30 feet. Good-size crappies also are being caught in 25 feet or deeper.

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

LAKE MINNETONKA AREA    

Look for sunfish in 16 to 18 feet and crappies over 25 to 30 feet throughout the bays on Lake Minnetonka. Hit Lake Independence for crappies during the evening hours over 30 to 32 feet. Walleye action has been slow, but northern pike remain active in 12 to 15 feet on Minnetonka and Medicine Lake. 

Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227

LAKE VERMILION

Walleyes continue to be found in 20 to 30 feet, mainly along the breaks of most reefs. The Fish House Reef area in Big Bay or mouth of Pike Bay have been two of the better areas this week. Crappie reports have been limited, but northern pike remain active in the shallow bays over 10 to 12 feet.

Pike Bay Lodge (218) 753-2430

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

You’ll want to check with resorts on lake access conditions and the availability of plowed roads – snow is limiting off-road travel options. The perch bite has been on and off with the main lake flats or west side breaks producing the most fish in 12 to 20 feet. Some walleyes are being caught on top of the humps and sand bars in 16 to 20 feet, while northern pike are active throughout the lake.

Lake Winnie Resort Association                   

LEECH LAKE

Shiner minnows continue to produce a few walleyes throughout Walker Bay in 22 to 32 feet. The south shore flats out of Trapper’s Landing also are producing some walleyes over 20 to 25 feet. Sand Point continues to produce perch in 6 to 12 feet, but you have to sort through a lot of small fish and you’ll increase your odds of putting a few more jumbos on the ice if you’re willing to stay on the move. Snowmobiles are the best mode of transportation since it’s tough to get off the plowed roads that exist.

Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505

Shriver’s Bait Company (218) 547-2250

RAINY LAKE     

The recent swings in weather patterns didn’t seem to affect the walleye bite in Sand Bay. Jigging with a minnow has been working for walleyes and crappies around Grindstone Island and Dryweed Island for anglers with portable gear. Black Bay continues to be the best area to look for bigger pods of crappies and northern pike. 

International Falls CVB (800) 325-5766

RED LAKE

Walleye fishing seems to be good for some and slow for others. The best bite seems to be in 9 to 12 feet with small, plain hooks on a dead stick, with some fish being taken on spoons and a minnow head during low-light periods of the day. 

Mort’s On Upper Red (218) 647-8128

JR’s Corner Access (320) 290-3838

Twin Cities Metro

NORTHEAST METRO

Tip ups and sucker minnows are producing northern pike in less than 12 feet at Battle Creek Lake, Powers Lake, and Lake Johanna. Bald Eagle Lake and White Bear Lake are giving up a few walleyes in 20 to 25 feet during low light periods. Work the shallow weedlines on Bone Lake and Big Marine Lake for sunfish. 

Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle (651) 777-2421

WEST METRO

Steiger Lake is producing sunfish in 6 to 8 feet and Wasserman Lake started giving up crappies in 12 to 14 feet during low-light periods. Work the 10- to 12-foot weedlines on Lake Zumbra and Lake Auburn for northern pike. Jigging spoons and small minnows are turning a few walleyes in the Belle Plaine area of the  Minnesota River. 

Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022

SOUTH METRO

Orchard Lake and Prior Lake are producing panfish and a few walleyes in 18 to 20 feet – some sunfish are being found in 8 to 10 feet on these lakes as well. Hit Crystal Lake in 10 feet for a mixed bag of panfish as well. Lake Marion, Lake O’Dowd, and Prior are safe bets for northern pike in 8 feet with tip ups and sucker minnows.

Prior Lake Bait & Tackle (952) 447-6096

LAKE WACONIA

You’ll catch sunfish during the day in 12 to 15 feet and crappies at night over 14 to 20 feet on Center Reef, Pillsbury Reef, and in Waconia Bay. A few walleyes can be had at night if you get away from the crowds on the north shore weedline, Kegg’s Reef, North Reef, and Center Reef in 14 to 18 feet. Northern pike action remains strong in 14 to 18 feet on Center and Pillsbury reefs or Waconia Bay.

Mases In Towne Marina (952) 442-2096

Statewide

ALEXANDRIA AREA

Crappies and sunfish are being found scattered between 6 and 25 feet on Lake Le Homme Dieu, Lake Geneva, Lake Darling, and the north end of Lake Carlos – the crappies have generally been deeper. Christopherson’s Bay on Lake Ida continues to produce a mixed bag of panfish in 6 to 12 feet, while walleye and northern pike action is slow.

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

ANNANDALE AREA

Crappies and sunfish are being caught on Lake John in 12 to 15 feet or 15 to 25 feet on Granite Lake, Pleasant Lake, and Rock Lake. A few walleyes continue to be caught during low-light periods on Clearwater Lake, Lake Pulaski, Buffalo Lake, and Pleasant in 16 to 24 feet. Northern pike remain active along the weedlines of most lakes. 

Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297

BATTLE LAKE AREA

Walleye action has picked up a bit over 25 to 30 feet on Rush Lake, West Battle Lake, and Otter Tail Lake – jigging spoons are working best. You’ll find crappies during low-light periods and sunfish during the day in 15 to 20 feet at Rush, Walker Lake, West Battle, and Wall Lake. Northern pike action remains strong with tip ups and sucker minnows in 15 feet on most lakes. A few tullibees are being found on the north end of Otter Tail and Mollie Stark Lake over 30 to 32 feet.

Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596

BEMIDJI AREA

With the extreme cold weather last week, the bite is still slow, and with more snow expected this week, travel off the plowed roads will be difficult unless you have a snowmobile. There is also a lot of slush starting to develop on area lakes, too. You’ll still catch a few perch and an occasional walleye on Lake Bemidji, Lake Plantagenet, and Big Lake on jigging spoons and small minnow head in 18 to 25 feet. 

Dick Beardsley Guide Service (218) 556-7172

BLACKDUCK AREA

Fishing reports have been limited mainly due to the fact that it’s tough to get on most lakes. Very few roads or accesses have been opened after another round of snow last weekend. There is a road system on Blackduck Lake and people are catching perch on it in 18 to 24 feet.

Timberline Sports and Tackle (218) 835-4636

BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA 

North Long Lake is producing sunfish and crappies in 16 to 20 feet, while the south end of Gull Lake and Cullen Lake are kicking out northern pike in shallow water. Some walleyes are being caught over 30 feet or more on the north end of Gull and Round Lake early and late each day.

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

CROSBY AREA

Rainbow trout continue to be caught on small spoons and waxworms at Manuel Pit, Yackey Pit, and Huntington Pit. Anglers are sight fishing along the shorelines in shallow water or finding suspended trout over deep water. A few walleyes are coming off Rabbit Lake  with setlines and small minnows in 21 to 24 feet during the evening hours. Look for crappies during the day on Milford Lake and Upper Dean Lake in 17 to 20 feet. Big Mahnomen Lake is producing some sunfish and keeping-size perch in 10 to 14 feet. 

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

DETROIT LAKES AREA

Lakes such as Little Detroit, Tamarack, Cotton, and Floyd are giving up a mixed bag of panfish in 13 to 16 feet. You’ll find a few active walleyes during low-light periods on Big Detroit Lake, Lake Sallie, and Lake Melissa in 15 to 20 feet. Hit Pickeral Lake, Pine Lake, and Cotton with sucker minnows for northern pike in 15 feet. 

Quality Bait and Tackle (218) 844-2248

ELY AREA

Lake trout remain active, hitting bucktails, sucker minnows, or tubes,   on the 30- to 50-foot sunken islands of Snowbank Lake and Burntside Lake. Rippin’ Raps are turning rainbow trout on Miner’s Lake and Tofte Lake. A few walleyes are coming off Shagawa Lake in 20 to 30 feet or Snowbank in 30 to 50 feet. Look for suspended crappies over 30 feet on Birch Lake and Basswood Lake and bluegills on Basswood in 12 to 15 feet.

Arrowhead Outdoors (218) 365-5358

EMILY AREA 

Crappies are being found suspended over 35 to 38 feet on Mitchell Lake, and Thunder Lake is giving up a few walleyes in 18 to 20 feet during the evening hours. Look to Ruth Lake for sunfish in 16 to 18 feet, while tip ups and sucker minnows are producing northern pike on Eagle Lake in 14 to 18 feet. 

Redding Sports and Spirits (218) 763-2191

FAIRMONT AREA

Crappies and yellow bass continue to be caught in 15 to 20 feet at Hall Lake and Budd Lake. Hit Sisseton Lake and Budd for bluegills in 15 to 20 feet as well. 

Sommer Outdoors (507) 235-5225

FARIBAULT AREA

Look for suspended crappies on Cedar Lake over 20 to 25 feet of water and French Lake over 28 to 35 feet of water. Shields Lake is giving up crappies in shallower water as well. Sunfish action has been slow, but tip ups and fathead minnows are producing northern pike on the weed edges of Kelley Dudley Lake.

John’s Bait & Tackle (507) 332-6787

GRAND MARAIS AREA

Splake action has heated up with salted minnows and waxworms on Musquash Lake in 8 to 15 feet, but these fish are right under the ice. Trout Lake is kicking out rainbow trout in 12 to 20 feet and these fish are suspended. Splake also are being found suspended high in the water column at Esther Lake over 10 to 15 feet. Poplar Lake started giving up crappies over 30 feet. A few walleyes are being caught on South Fowl Lake and Elbow Lake in 4 to 6 feet or Gunflint Lake in 25 to 35 feet. Smelt or salted minnows are the ticket for suspended lake trout at Duncan Lake and Greenwood Lake over 30 to 40 feet.

Buck’s Hardware (218) 387-2280

GREY EAGLE AREA

Pine Lake continues to give up crappies in 16 to 18 feet and sunfish in 8 feet. Big Swan Lake is producing crappies in 18 to 20 feet and sunfish in 12 to 15 feet. Big Swan also is kicking out pike and Big Birch Lake continues to give up a walleye or two at night in 18 to 30 feet. 

Nancy’s Bait & Tackle (320) 285-2405

HACKENSACK AREA 

A few walleyes are coming off Pine Mountain Lake, Baby Lake, and north side of Pleasant Lake in 18 to 22 feet during the evening hours. You’ll find crappies suspended over 18 to 22 feet during low-light periods on Ten Mile Lake, Stoney Lake, Mule Lake, and Birch Lake. Bluegill reports have been best in 14 to 18 feet on Birch and Mule.

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

MADISON LAKE AREA

The 6-foot weeds in East Bay on Madison Lake are producing bluegills, bass, and pike during the day and crappies after dark. You’ll find suspended crappies over 25 to 28 feet along Church Bar on Madison. Hit the west end of Big Jefferson Lake for crappies in 20 to 25 feet and bluegills in 15 to 18 feet. Second and Third points on Lake Washington are giving up walleyes in 18 to 20 feet, while Baker’s Bay is giving up panfish in 15 to 18 feet.

Corner Bait (507) 243-4464

MORA AREA

Knife Lake is producing sunfish during the day and crappies after dark in 8 to 10 feet. Fish Lake is giving up a mixed bag of panfish on the west side of the island in 9 feet, while Ann Lake is kicking out perch, sunfish, and crappies during the day in 8 to 10 feet. 

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

ORTONVILLE AREA

Perch action has picked up again on the south end of Big Stone Lake in 13 feet. Small tungsten jigs and spikes are working best and there has been a few nice bluegills mixed in.

Artie’s Bait (320) 839-2480

PARK RAPIDS AREA

Northern pike remain active on Fish Hook Lake and Pickeral Lake, hitting sucker minnows in 6 to 10 feet. Look for suspended crappies over 24 to 28 feet on Big Mantrap Lake or 18 to 22 feet at Portage Lake. Bluegills are being found in the 8- to 12-foot weeds on Height of Land Lake or Fifth and Sixth Crow Wing lakes.

Delaney’s (218) 732-4281

Smokey Hills Outdoors (218) 237-5099

PERHAM AREA

Star Lake, Big Pine Lake, Rush Lake, Lake Marion, and East Battle Lake are giving up crappies over 25 to 40 feet and sunfish in 12 to 16 feet. A few walleyes are being caught during the evening hours in 16 to 20 feet on Big Pine and Rush. Pike are hitting suckers on tip ups on most lakes in 12 to 18 feet.

Gene’s Sport Shop (218) 346-3355

RED WING AREA

If the weather allows people to fish from boats, the Mississippi River is producing sauger during the day in 20 to 22 feet with a jig and minnow or walleyes on jigs and plastics in 13 feet during the evening hours. Anglers on the ice at Lake Pepin are finding a few walleyes in 15 to 18 feet.

Four Seasons Sports (651) 388-4334

RICHMOND/ST. CLOUD AREA

Crappies and a few walleyes are being found in 15 to 23 feet on Rice Lake. On Lake Koronis, anglers are finding some walleyes in 25 to 30 feet during low-light. Becker Lake is kicking out sunfish and crappies in 10 to 18 feet, as is Eden Lake in 10 to 20 feet. Look to Pearl Lake for sunfish and crappies in 12 to 15 feet and the deep holes throughout the Horseshoe Chain of Lakes have turned channel catfish.

Channel Marine and Sports (320) 597-5975

SAUK CENTRE AREA

Long Bridge Lake is producing sunfish and crappies in 14 to 16 feet. Look for sunfish in 10 to 12 feet at Maple Lake or 18 to 21 feet on the north end of Lake Osakis. Crappies are hitting on Big Sauk Lake, west of Diamond Point, in 35 to 40 feet or the north end of Osakis in 18 to 22 feet.

Fletcher’s Bait Shop (320) 352-2155

STARBUCK AREA

Sunfish, crappies, and northern pike are hitting on the Glenwood end of Lake Minnewaska between Fish Hatchery Bay and Lakeside Ballroom in 15 feet. Ann Lake, south of Reno Lake, started giving up walleyes in 10 to 12 feet. Anglers fishing overnight on Minnewaska are catching a walleye or two in 14 feet with sucker minnows.

Minnewaska Bait and Tackle

(320) 239-2239

WILLMAR AREA

Perch continue to be caught in shallow water Big Kandi Lake, Long Lake, and Lake Lillian. Hit Diamond Lake during the evening hours for crappies over 20 to 25 feet. Northern pike remain active on Nest Lake, hitting sucker minnows, in 16 to 18 feet. The island area on Nest is giving up a few crappies at night as well.

J&J Hwy 71 Bait and Tackle (320) 235-4097

Categories: MInnesota Fishing Reports, News

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