Minnesota Outdoor News Fishing Report for March 8, 2019
LAKE MILLE LACS
Fishing pressure has been light since the walleye season closed and most roads have not been maintained as well. The best option is to check with resorts heading into this weekend to find out what they have open for a road system.
Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811
Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430
LAKE OF THE WOODS
Walleyes and saugers continue to hit on the south end in 24 to 34 feet with some morning/evening action in 15 to 20 feet, and some bigger walleyes continue to be suspended. The ice is thick, so extensions are needed. At the Northwest Angle, walleyes are coming out of 22 to 30 feet with some saugers and jumbo perch mixed in. Snowmobile trails from the south shore, across lake, to the Angle are marked, but there’s a lot of slush off the trail.
Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau (800) 382-FISH
LAKE MINNETONKA AREA
A few roads have been opened on area lakes since last week, but they were primarily used to get fish houses off the ice. They are by no means in good enough shape for travel or fishing opportunities – fishing has basically been nonexistent again this week.
Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227
Fishing pressure has been extremely light, almost nonexistent, due to the deep snow and slush – it’s very difficult to move around the lake. Removing fish houses has been about the only activity taking place over the last week.
Pike Bay Lodge (218) 753-2430
The perch bite has been spotty and most resorts have closed their roads at this point due to poor lake conditions. Access is very limited with slush and deep snow making any off-road travel impossible.
There isn’t much to report other than it’s very difficult moving around the lake. Deep snow, slush, and drifts have made travel nearly impossible and fishing pressure has limited as a result. Anglers trying to remove their fish houses have found it to be a struggle due to conditions.
Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505
Shriver’s Bait Company (218) 547-2250
Anglers are doing well in Sand Bay for walleyes and crappies in 25 feet or more. Live bait is working best, but fish are being caught on rattle baits as well and electronics will be helpful since some fish are suspended. The structure around Grindstone and Dryweed islands also is producing walleyes.
International Falls CVB (800) 325-5766
There hasn’t been much happening since the walleye season closed. Anglers haven’t been looking for crappies at this point, but the weather and lake conditions aren’t allowing people to get out.
Mort’s On Upper Red (218) 647-8128
JR’s Corner Access (320) 290-3838
Twin Cities Metro
With the poor weather and limited travel options due to deep snow and poor accessibility, fishing activity has been light. A few “snake trails” have been opened on some lakes, but there hasn’t been much to report as far as a bite off them.
Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle (651) 777-2421
There’s been some limited activity on Lake Waconia where a few roads exist, but any amount of wind or snow throughout this week might shut those down as well. It’s nearly impossible to get on any other lakes, and angler interest has been mostly nonexistent.
Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022
Anglers have been few and far between over the past week as fishing options remain limited due to poor lake conditions. It’s nearly impossible to move around on any lake even with track vehicles as more slush has started to form under the snow.
Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle (320) 763-3255
Anglers are getting on a few lakes where roads or trails have been busted open, but travel remains difficult throughout the area. Some crappies and sunfish are being caught on Granite Lake in 10 to 20 feet, John Lake in 10 to 15 feet, and Little Maple Lake in 20 feet.
Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297
BATTLE LAKE AREA
A lack of plowed roads is limiting where people can go and if there isn’t a road plowed you can’t get anywhere on area lakes. Anglers with snowmobiles are even struggling on most lakes due to slush. West Battle Lake had a few roads opened early this week and there has been some reports of crappies hitting in 20 to 25 feet and sunfish in 15 feet.
Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596
Fishing has pretty much come to a halt here. There’s a lot of snow and slush and with more snow expected this weekend, lakes will likely continue to be shut down. The few open roads left on Lake Bemidji are in rough shape at best. There are a few perch being taken by folks fishing along plowed roads, but most are still trying to get the remaining fish houses off area lakes.
Dick Beardsley Guide Service (218) 556-7172
A handful of people are working through the deep snow and slush, getting on Blackduck Lake or Island Lake. They are catching perch, crappies, and bluegills in 18 to 22 feet. There are not roads plowed on these lakes and even anglers with snowmobiles are struggling with slush.
Timberline Sports and Tackle (218) 835-4636
People are getting on the south end of Gull Lake and catching eelpout in over 25 to 35 feet of water. There’s also some trails in the Highway 371 Bay on North Long Lake where a few panfish are being caught. Overall, it continues to be very difficult getting around on most lakes so fishing reports have been fairly limited.
S & W Bait & Guide Service/Nisswa Guide League (218) 829-7010
CASS LAKE AREA
The northwest access on Pike Bay Lake was marginally plowed open early this week, but anglers weren’t getting very far out on the lake. Travel of any kind, even with track vehicles, has been nearly impossible on all other lakes due to deep snow and a lot of slush underneath it.
Sunset Cove Resort (800) 279-4831
Some roads have been plowed but mainly by people that were getting their fish houses off the lakes last weekend. Slush also has started to become more of a problem on most lakes in this area, making moving around even more difficult. The best report early this week was coming from the A-Frame area on Chisago Lake for panfish in 6 to 11 feet of water.
Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334
A limited number of anglers are walking on the pits and trout fishing not far from shore. The morning hours have been best on Huntington Pit, Yackey Pit, and Manuel Pit for suspended trout over 70 feet of water or more. Travel on any of the area lakes is nonexistent due to snow and slush.
Oars ‘n Mine Bait and Tackle (218) 546-6912
DETROIT LAKES AREA
Look to Little Detroit Lake, Lake Melissa, and Floyd Lake for a mixed bag of panfish in 15 to 20 feet. Mobility is an issue on all lakes due to slush and drifts, even on those where a few trails have been opened and people have been fishing.
Quality Bait and Tackle (218) 844-2248
The inland lakes have too much snow and slush to access them. Anglers are getting on Lake Superior where lake trout are being caught with smelt or herring, north of Duluth near Stoney Point, in 60 to 200 feet. The bite closer to shore has been best for coho salmon and herring in 50 feet with small minnows and jigs.
Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094
EAST CENTRAL MN
Plowed roads are at a minimum on area lakes so if you don’t have a snowmobile, it’s almost impossible to get around. Look for suspended crappies on Green Lake over 17 to 22 feet and Blue Lake is producing a few keeping-size perch in 14 feet. Those were really the only two fishing options available early this week.
Tales and Trails Sport Shop (763) 856-3985
Bucktails or blade baits are producing lake trout over 30 to 50 feet at Snowbank Lake and Burntside Lake. Miner’s Lake, Tofte Lake, and High Lake are safe bets for stream trout in the top 15 feet of the water column – waxworms, salted minnows or trout eggs have all been working. Slush and drifts are limiting where anglers can get to, a couple lakes have had roads punched open, but most people are using snowmobiles.
Arrowhead Outdoors (218) 365-5358
Poor lake conditions have limited fishing again this week. A lack of plowed roads and slush under the snow has made travel of any kind nearly impossible on all lakes. Some anglers have tried getting out, but it’s a difficult process.
Redding Sports and Spirits (218) 763-2191
The last round of snow along with the wind that followed ended any thoughts of driving on area lakes. Anglers are walking out, not far from shore, on Budd Lake and Hall Lake for crappies in 15 to 20 feet.
Sommer Outdoors (507) 235-5225
FERGUS FALLS AREA
Not much has changed from a week ago as far as lake conditions and fishing options. Deep snow and slush continues to limit accessibility and travel on all lakes even with snowmobiles or other track vehicles.
Little Chief Outpost (218) 998-5050
GRAND MARAIS AREA
There are pockets of slush on most lakes so anglers are walking out or using snowmobile. Lake trout are being caught on Greenwood Lake in 25 to 40 feet with fathead minnows, Duncan Lake in 30 to 45 feet on smelt or preserved minnows, Gunflint Lake in 20 to 35 feet on sucker minnows, and Trout Lake in 15 to 35 feet on fatheads.
Buck’s Hardware (218) 387-2280
GREY EAGLE AREA
Fishing activity has been limited due to deep snow, slush, and a lack of plowed roads on area lakes. Anglers were even reporting trouble with snowmobiles on lakes this week due to slush. Getting out in these conditions may be more trouble than it’s worth.
Nancy’s Bait & Tackle (320) 285-2405
The few roads that did exist on area lakes have mostly been blown shut and slush continues to create travel issues for track vehicles as well. As a result, any fishing activity has continued to be minimal throughout the area.
Swanson’s Bait and Tackle (218) 675-6176
MADISON LAKE AREA
There is one main road open on Madison Lake, but it’s still tough to get around anywhere else. As a result, fishing pressure has been minimal throughout the area. On Madison, some crappies are being caught near Church Bar in 20 to 25 feet.
Corner Bait (507) 243-4464
A few trails have been opened for panfish anglers on a handful of lakes, but you just can’t drive anywhere. Look to Knife Lake, the narrows on Ann Lake, and west of the island on Fish Lake for sunfish and a few crappies in less than 8 feet.
Jerry’s Sport & Bait Shop (320) 679-2151
As of Tuesday morning, there was a road open out of Schmidt’s Landing on Big Stone Lake. Whether that remains open through this weekend will depend on the weather so call ahead. The perch bite has been OK in this area in 11 feet of water. Anglers with track vehicles are heading to the islands area on Big Stone and finding a few bluegills as well.
Artie’s Bait (320) 839-2480
PARK RAPIDS AREA
Fishing pressure continues to be limited due to poor conditions with deep snow, drifts, and slush making travel on most lakes impossible. There is a road or two opened on the south side of Fish Hook Lake, but the panfish bite has been slow.
Delaney’s (218) 732-4281
Smokey Hills Outdoors (218) 237-5099
You’ll find a few trails on some lakes, but for the most part, fishing has come to a slow grind. Even where some limited opportunities remain, the cold and windy weather hasn’t allowed anglers to take advantage of them. Generally, people are waiting for better weather and improved lake conditions before they start chasing panfish and tullibees.
Gene’s Sport Shop (218) 346-3355
RED WING AREA
A jig and minnow is turning walleyes and sauger in 18 to 20 feet on the Mississippi River. The Everts Resort Landing is open, and most fishing is taking place on the upper two miles of the river. Anglers ice fishing in the bays and marinas continue to catch northern pike on tip ups and minnows.
Four Seasons Sports (651) 388-4334
RICHMOND/ST. CLOUD AREA
The only activity on lakes last weekend was by people trying to get their fish houses off the ice. Deep snow and slush has made travel impossible on most lakes and even where people can get on fishing pressure has been minimal.
Channel Marine and Sports (320) 597-5975
SAUK CENTRE AREA
There’s an evening crappie bite at Long Bridge Lake over 24 feet and the south end of Sauk Lake in 18 to 20 feet. The north end of Lake Osakis is producing sunfish in 18 to 22 feet, and the Battle Point area is giving up crappies during low-light periods over 40 feet. There were roads open on these lakes early this week.
Fletcher’s Bait Shop (320) 352-2155
There’s a marginal road on the Glenwood end of Lake Minnewaska, but fishing pressure has been light. Some sunfish and crappies are being caught here in 12 to 15 feet, while activity on other lakes remains nonexistent.
Minnewaska Bait and Tackle (320) 239-2239
With the snow continuing to pile up, very few roads are open on lakes. When they do get plowed, consistent winds have blown them shut, so getting around on area lakes remain difficult. Some anglers have opted to walk out, but even that has been difficult and fishing reports have been limited.
Borch’s Sporting Goods (507) 532-4880