Report from the Dock
Slowly, anglers are starting to see some fall walleye patterns develop even though water temperatures remain warmer than they should be this time of year. With some cooler weather in the forecast this week, the fall walleye bite should improve quickly over shallow water in most areas. Look for shorelines, points, and structure in 6 to 15 feet to start producing good walleye numbers along with some big fish. Crappies are set up along remaining weed edges or they’ve moved to deep, basin areas and being found suspended – the deep/suspended bite should only get better as the water cools as well. Muskie reports have been mixed with some success being found by dragging sucker minnows or throwing topwater baits.
LAKE MILLE LACS
Walleye reports have been light, but there hasn’t been many people fishing them and there hasn’t been any type of fall pattern developing. Walleyes are scattered on the mud flats and mid-depth rocks and water temperatures were still in the mid 60-degree range early this week. Smallmouth bass have garnered a lot more attention and the big fish are hitting consistently on the 12- to 18-foot rocks.
Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811
Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430
LAKE OF THE WOODS
Big numbers of walleye and sauger are set up along the south shore and anglers are catching a lot of fish. Anchor up and pitch a jig with a fathead or emerald shiner, pull spinners with minnows or troll crankbaits in 18 to 28 feet across the south shore in areas such as Pine Island, Morris Point, Zippel Bay, Graceton Beach, Long Point, and Rocky Point. Emerald shiners continue to run in the Rainy River and more and more walleyes are following them in. There’s been some big walleyes caught, but not huge numbers of them at this point. Water temperature is in the low 50-degree range and jigging with a frozen or live shiner is the go to method. Sturgeon action remains strong on the river as well. Fall fishing at the Northwest Angle continues to be excellent with a jig and minnow or jig and plastic producing walleyes on the points, reefs and sand in neck down areas over 12 to 26 feet. You’ll find crappies over 25 to 30 feet and muskie anglers report good fishing one day and sluggish fish the next.
Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau
LAKE MINNETONKA AREA
Minnows are producing walleyes along the weedlines during the day and in the channels during low-light periods throughout Lake Minnetonka. Northern pike and bass are hitting spinnerbaits in 5 to 15 feet Minnetonka, Lake Independence, and Medicine Lake. Muskie action has picked up in 14 to 18 feet with sucker minnows on Minnetonka or 10 to 12 feet on Independence. Crappies have started being found suspended over 18 feet, while sunfish are going on the 8- to 10-foot hard bottom areas throughout Minnetonka.
Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227
On the west end, muskies are being found in the shallow weeds or over basin areas in deep water and suspended. Walleye reports have been best in less than 12 feet of water with a jig and minnow and smallmouth bass are going on the 12- to 15-foot rocks. On the east basin, walleyes are hitting minnows on the 16- to 22-foot reefs and rock humps. There’s been a few muskies in the upper 40-inch class boated on the mid-depth rocks and smallmouth bass remain active on the 10- to 12-foot rock humps. Some crappies are being found suspended over the 20- to 25-foot holes, while grouse hunters continue to do well and most report seeing plenty of birds.
Pike Bay Lodge (218) 753-2430
Vermilion Dam Lodge (218) 666-5418
Walleye action has slowed a bit, but fish are being caught with a jig and minnow in 4 to 8 feet along the shorelines and points. The water has cleared a bit so you might want to start looking slightly deeper. Perch and northern pike are mixed with the walleyes in shallow water. Duck hunting reports have been limited with no new birds moving into the area.
Walleye action is slowly picking up in shallow water with a jig and minnow around Sand Point, the Annex, and points or shorelines throughout Sucker Bay. Trolling crankbaits around Goose Island in 8 to 12 feet has produced some walleyes as well. Muskies remain active in less than 10 feet on the main lake sand and rock, while anglers continue to sort through perch off Sand Point in 6 to 8 feet. Grouse hunting has been much better than duck hunting this week, although there hasn’t been any new ducks moving in.
Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505
Shriver’s Bait Company
Walleyes continue to hit minnows in 25 feet or more on the main lake mud and rocks. The rocks, both mid-depth and deep, are holding numbers of smallmouth bass that are being taken with minnows and plastics. Look for pods of crappies to be suspended over deep water in the main basin areas of the lake.
RainyDaze Guide Service
Fishing pressure remains somewhat light, but walleye action has picked up quite a bit over the past week for those going out. A jig and minnow or spinner and minnow is working best along the shorelines in 4 to 8 feet.
West Wind Resort (218) 647-8998
Twin Cities Metro
Northern pike are hitting sucker minnows on the weedlines at Powers Lake and Jarvis Lake. Look for sunfish in 5 to 7 feet at Beaver Lake, Tanners Lake, Powers, and Lake Jane. Crappies are being found suspended over the deep holes on Big Marine Lake, while bass fishing remains strong on Demontreville Lake and Jane. A few walleyes are being taken with minnows on the weed edges at Forest Lake, and muskies are hitting sucker minnows on White Bear Lake and Forest.
Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle
Walleyes are hitting minnows on the reef edges throughout Lake Waconia in 15 to 18 feet. Largemouth bass are hitting topwater baits in shallow water on Lake Wasserman and Lake Minnewashta. Hit the center of Hydes Lake for crappies in 10 feet and sunfish are being caught off the fishing pier on Lake Auburn.
Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022
Minnows are turning walleyes on Prior Lake over 18 to 22 feet in the Twin Islands area. Tiger muskies are being taken with sucker minnows and bobbers off the fishing pier at Cleary Lake and the fishing pier on Cedar Lake is worth hitting for bluegills and crappies.
Prior Lake Bait & Tackle
A jig and minnow is producing walleyes on Lake Le Homme Dieu and Lake Geneva in 20 to 24 feet, Lake Mary in 18 to 20 feet, Lake Andrew in 16 to 20 feet, and Lake Miltona in 35 to 45 feet. Crappies continue to be found off the weedlines in 20 to 24 feet at Lake Geneva and Le Homme Dieu. Bass fishing remains strong along the deep weeds or bulrushes throughout the Le Homme Dieu Chain of Lakes, while muskie and sunfish action is slow. Waterfowl hunters are shooting quite a few geese, but not many ducks.
Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle
Minnows or Jigging Raps are producing walleyes on Clearwater Lake, Cedar Lake, Cokato Lake, and Big Swan Lake in 12 to 20 feet. Look for crappies on Lake Augusta and Lake Marie over 15 feet and sunfish are going in 8 to 15 feet on Clearwater. The weedlines on most lakes are producing bass and pike. Waterfowl hunters are shooting more geese than ducks and mainly in fields.
Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297
BATTLE LAKE AREA
Walleyes remain active on Otter Tail Lake in less than 10 feet or West Battle Lake in 12 to 20 feet – minnows and crankbaits are both working. Look for suspended sunfish and crappies over 18 to 20 feet at West Battle, Rush Lake, and Clitherall Lake. Bass fishing remains strong with topwater baits on Long Lake, Stalker Lake, Clitherall, and West Battle. Sucker minnows are turning pike on Otter Tail and West Battle in 15 to 20 feet and muskies are being caught in 20 feet with 12- to 14-inch sucker minnows on West Battle. There’s quite a few geese being shot in fields, but duck numbers are very light.
Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596
Walleye fishing has definitely improved over the past week. Water temperatures are still in the low to mid 60’s, but they will be falling this week as colder weather moves in. Jigs and minnows are turning fish on Lake Bemidji and Lake Plantagenet in 10 to 16 feet. Pike are hitting in those same areas and crappies have moved out to deep water on area lakes. Bass fishing has remained pretty good off the weed edges and with the leaves falling, grouse hunting is getting better every day.
Dick Beardsley Guide Service
Blackduck Lake, Island Lake, and Round Lake are producing walleyes with a jig and minnow in 8 to 12 feet. Hit Pimushe Lake, Turtle River Lake, and Rabideau Lake for crappies and bluegills – some are in the weeds and others have moved out to 20 feet or so. There’s still quite a bit of cover, but many grouse hunters are saying this has been the most birds they’ve seen in years. There hasn’t been much for new ducks moving into the area, but goose hunting has been good.
Timberline Sports and Tackle
Minnows and crawlers are producing walleyes on Pelican Lake, Round Lake, and Gull Lake in 16 to 38 feet. The weed edges on Gull, Lake Edwards, and Pelican are giving up pike on sucker minnows. Largemouth bass remain active on most lakes in the 5- to 15-foot weeds. You’ll find sunfish in the 6- to 8-foot weeds on Nisswa Lake, Cullen Lake and the south end of Gull, but crappie reports have been light.
S & W Bait & Guide Service/
Nisswa Guide League (218) 829-7010
CASS LAKE AREA
Perch and walleyes are being caught in the 6- to 8-foot sand with slip bobbers and minnows in Allen’s Bay on Cass Lake and Pike Bay Lake. Walleyes also are hitting minnows in 35 to 40 feet during the day around Cedar Island on Cass. Crappies and bluegills are being caught in Dick’s Bay and Buck Lake on Cass, while Kitchi Lake is giving up crappies over 30 feet. Muskies are most active during the late afternoon hours, hitting bucktails, on the shallow rocks throughout Cass. Waterfowl hunters continue to bang away at local ducks and grouse reports remain pretty good.
Sunset Cove Resort (800) 279-4831
A jig and minnow is turning a few walleyes in 10 to 14 feet on Chisago Lake and Green Lake. Sunfish and crappies continue to be caught in 8 to 12 feet on Chisago, Green, North Lindstrom Lake, North Center Lake and South Center Lake. Bass continue to be caught in 8 to 12 feet on most lakes and minnows are producing pike in 10 to 15 feet at Green, North Center, and Chisago. Waterfowl hunters are shooting geese, but struggling to find any numbers of ducks.
Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334
A few walleyes are being taken with minnows on Serpent Lake in 22 to 28 feet and Rabbit Lake in 25 to 35 feet. Look for suspended crappies in the deep holes on the north end of Clearwater Lake or Nokay Lake in 25 to 30 feet. Little Rabbit Lake is giving up bluegills and some crappies in 22 to 30 feet. Hunters continue to shoot quite a few wood ducks and geese, while grouse hunters are flushing birds, but thick cover is limiting success.
Oars ‘n Mine Bait and Tackle
DETROIT LAKES AREA
A jig and minnow is turning walleyes in 18 to 20 feet on Pelican Lake, Lake Melissa, Big Detroit Lake, and Big Cormorant Lake. You’ll find sunfish and crappies along the 8- to 12-foot weed edges on most lakes. Muskies remain shallow and active, hitting large suckers on Big Detroit and Pelican. Hunting reports have been limited.
Quality Bait and Tackle
Chubs are producing walleyes on Boulder Lake and Fish Lake in 10 to 12 feet. The Highbanks area on Fish started giving up crappies over 15 feet and large sucker minnows are turning muskies on Island Lake in less than 10 feet. Archery hunters continue to do well, filling a lot of management tags and grouse reports have improved with woods starting to thin out.
Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094
EAST CENTRAL MN
Crappies and sunfish continue to be caught in 12 to 4 feet on Blue, Green Lake, Eagle Lake, and Fremont Lake. Smallmouth bass are hitting minnows on the current breaks or deep holes on the Rum and Mississippi rivers. Walleye action has picked up with minnows on the deep holes of the Mississippi or 14 to 17 feet on Blue Lake. Duck and goose hunting reports have been mostly poor.
Tales and Trails Sport Shop
A jig and minnow is turning walleyes on Bear Island Lake and Big Lake in 15 feet or Snowbank Lake in 30 to 35 feet. Smallmouth bass are hitting minnows on the 15- to 25-foot humps on Basswood Lake, Shagawa Lake and Snowbank. Sucker minnows or spinnerbaits are producing pike on the points of Birch Lake, Burntside Lake, and Armstrong Lake. Miner’s Lake and Tofte Lake are giving up rainbow trout on a slip bobber and crawler or small spoons. Grouse and woodcock hunting continues to go well, even better this week with the leaves coming down.
Arrowhead Outdoors (218) 365-5358
Crappies are being caught on Mitchell Lake over 12 feet and the weedlines on Ruth Lake are producing largemouth bass on topwater baits during the evening hours. Troll spoons in 14 feet on the north end of Lawrence Lake for pike. Waterfowl hunters are shooting quite a few geese and some mallards and turkey hunting success remains strong.
Redding Sports and Spirits
Anglers fishing from shore are catching yellow bass and bluegills on Hall Lake, Budd Lake, and Lake Sisseton in 4 to 8 feet. Crappies are suspended over 8 to 10 feet and active early and late each day on Hall, Budd, and Sisseton. A few walleyes are being caught with crankbaits or minnows on Hall Lake in 8 to 12 feet. Duck numbers remain very light, but some geese are being shot.
Sommer Outdoors (507) 235-5225
Cedar Lake and Lake Mazaska are giving up crappies and sunfish in 10 to 12 feet. Bass fishing remains strong with jigs and plastics in less than 10 feet on Cedar, Mazaska, and Shields Lake. Hunting reports have been minimal.
John’s Bait & Tackle (507) 332-6787
Lake Country Convenience & Bait
GRAND RAPIDS/DEER RIVER AREA
Walleyes continue to hit a jig and minnow in 8 to 12 feet on Big Cutfoot Sioux Lake and you’ll find suspended crappies here over 20 feet or more. Deer Lake, Lake Pokegama, and Bowstring Lake started giving up walleyes on creek chubs in 15 to 20 feet. Duck hunters continue to shoot local birds and grouse hunting has been excellent with good grouse numbers being reported.
Fred’s Live Bait (218) 246-8710
GREY EAGLE AREA
Big Birch Lake is kicking out walleyes with minnows and crawlers in the 15- foot weeds or over the 35- to 40-foot structure. Sunfish are going in 15 to 20 feet and crappies are suspended at 20 to 25 feet over deeper water on Big Birch. Little Birch Lake is producing walleyes in 25 to 30 feet on minnows and Mound Lake is kicking out sunfish, crappies, and bass in 10 to 15 feet. Hunting reports have been light, but there are wood ducks and geese to be had.
Nancy’s Bait & Tackle (320) 285-2405
A jig and minnow is producing walleyes on Pleasant Lake and Woman Lake in 20 to 25 feet. You’ll find crappies suspended and active over the basin areas on Birch Lake, Child Lake, and Stoney Lake. Muskie anglers are seeing fish on Baby Lake, but most are willing to bite. Duck hunting success has been minimal, while grouse hunters are doing well.
Swanson’s Bait and Tackle
You’ll find suspended crappies off the remaining weed edges on Lake Washington. Minnows continue to produce walleyes on Belle Lake and Minnie Belle Lake. Trolling crankbaits and lead core over deep water on Minnie Belle has produced walleyes as well. Spinnerbaits, plastics, and live bait is producing largemouth bass on Manuella Lake. Duck numbers remain light throughout the area.
The Outpost Inc. (320) 587-8177
Nymphing and streamers have been turning numbers of trout on the South Branch of the Root River. Smallmouth bass action is strong with jig flies throughout the Root River as well. Streams are in excellent fishing condition and blue-winged olive hatches are going strong on most streams.
Root River Rod Company
MADISON LAKE AREA
Walleye action has picked up on Madison Lake with crankbaits or jigs and paddle tails in 10 to 14 feet of water. The Miller’s Point area on Madison continues to produce a mixed bag of panfish in 12 to 14 feet of water. German Lake has been producing crappies in 8 to 14 feet of water, and Second Point on Lake Washington has been giving up sunfish and crappies in 10 to 15 feet of water. Squirrel’s Nest Point on Washington is giving up some walleyes early and late each day in 6 to 8 feet of water.
Corner Bait (507) 243-4464
Sunfish and crappie action has improved quite a bit on Ann Lake and Knife Lake in 5 to 7 feet. Work Knife with a jig and minnow in 4 to 6 feet for walleyes or the shorelines on Knife with plastics for largemouth bass. There hasn’t been much to report on the hunting front.
Jerry’s Sport & Bait Shop
Perch, sunfish, and a few crappies continue to be caught in the Rocky Ledge and Mallard Point area in 8 to 14 feet on Big Stone Lake. Walleye action on Big Stone has been limited to a few fish around the south end islands in 8 to 10 feet of water. Waterfowl hunters are shooting a few local mallards, wood ducks, and geese and there hasn’t been any new birds moving in.
Artie’s Bait (320) 839-2480
PARK RAPIDS AREA
Jigs and redtails are turning walleyes in 18 to 24 feet on Long Lake, Fish Hook Lake, and Potato Lake. You’ll find crappies on the points and flats in 12 to 18 feet on the Crow Wing Chain, Lake Belle Taine, and Boulder lake. Large sucker minnows or topwater baits are triggering muskies on the shallow rocks at Big Mantrap Lake. Grouse hunting reports continue to be much better than waterfowl reports.
Delaney’s (218) 732-4281
Smokey Hills Outdoors
A jig and minnow continues to produce walleyes in 8 to 15 feet on Big Pine Lake and Little Pine Lake. Look for sunfish in 8 to 12 feet and crappies off the deep weeds and suspended on Dead Lake, Star Lake, Rush Lake, Big Pine, and Little Pine. Waterfowl hunters are shooting more geese than ducks – there just isn’t many ducks around.
Gene’s Sport Shop (218) 346-3355
RED WING AREA
Saugers and walleyes are being caught on jigs tipped with minnows or plastics and crankbaits from the Head of the Lake to the dam on the Mississippi River in 5 to 15 feet – work the current seams. Smallmouth and largemouth bass are being caught along the shoreline on the river with crankbaits. Duck hunting success has been limited, although there hasn’t been any new birds moving in.
Four Seasons Sports (651) 388-4334
RICHMOND/ST. CLOUD AREA
A jig and minnow or shallow-running crankbait is producing walleyes on Horseshoe Lake and the Sauk River. Walleyes also can be had with minnows in 8 to 18 feet on Lake Koronis or 12 to 20 feet on Rice Lake. Sunfish and crappies are being caught in 6 to 12 feet on Rice, Horseshoe, Long Lake, Schneider Lake, Grand Lake, and Becker Lake – look for crappies to start suspending over deep water as well. Bass and pike remain active in 6 to 15 feet on most lakes, while hunters are shooting more geese than ducks.
Channel Marine and Sports
SAUK CENTRE AREA
Big Sauk Lake is giving up walleyes in 9 to 18 feet, as are the mid-lake humps on Lake Osakis in 18 to 24 feet – minnows are working on both lakes. Sunfish and crappies are hitting on the outside weed edge in 15 to 18 feet on the north end of Osakis. Waterfowl hunters are shooting plenty of geese, but duck numbers are limited.
Fletcher’s Bait Shop (320) 352-2155
STAPLES/LITTLE FALLS AREA
Lake Shamineu and Lake Alexander started producing walleyes on minnows 12 to 18 feet. Small sucker minnows are turning smallmouth bass above the Little Falls dam on the Mississippi River. The trestle area above the dam started giving up walleyes on minnows or plastics as well. Other than a few archery deer being shot in the area, hunting reports have been light.
Da Fishin’ Hole (320) 631-0056
Work the points on Pelican Lake with a jig and minnow for walleyes. Minnows also are turning walleyes on Lake Minnewaska in the 13-foot weeds or 20 to 22 feet. Nightcrawlers are producing channel catfish for anglers fishing from shore on Lake Emily. Waterfowl reports have been limited to a few geese and puddle ducks off harvested fields.
Last Cast Bait and Tackle
Walleyes are being taken with minnows and crankbaits in less than 8 feet of water on West Twin Lake, Lake Shetek, Lake Sarah, Dead Coon Lake, and Lake Benton. Perch action remains consistent in 4 to 7 feet at Dead Coon, Cottonwood Lake, Benton, and Shetek. There’s some geese to be had in the area, but duck numbers are light.
Borch’s Sporting Goods