Sunday, February 5th, 2023
Sunday, February 5th, 2023

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Minnesota Pro Tip of the Week: Long-shanked hooks are easier on bluegills, more efficient

Tip by Scott Merwin


Years of guiding experience: 11


Favorite lakes: Osakis and all the Alexandria-area lakes


It’s been a good time to target sunfish on the lakes in the Alexandria area.


We’re jigging vertically, directly under the boat in the weeds in 8 to 12 feet of water. Find those pockets inside the weeds or work the edges. and try to keep that bait about six inches from the bottom.


I like a long-shanked hook tipped with a nightcrawler — or a Clam Drop-Kick jig — for a reason. They just make it easier to pop that hook out of it’s mouth, rather than having to dig the hook out of its throat and, we all know, seeing fish we release later struggle on the surface.


On top of the conservation aspect, being abe to quickly pop that hook out just makes you a faster and more efficient angler when working bluegill bites that can be pretty hot at times.


Merwin operates Scott’s Lake Osakis Guide Service, a multi-species guide service that services the lakes in the Alexandria area. He can be reached at (612) 203-1010.

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