Monday, February 6th, 2023
Monday, February 6th, 2023

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Minnesota Pro Tip of the Week: Tapping into muskies in a cooler-than-normal Mille Lacs

By Steve Scepaniak

Lower than normal water temperatures have definitely had an impact on the locations of muskies on Lake Mille Lacs.

Even with the recent heat wave, water temperatures are below average. As of early this week, there remained a lot of bays with 64- and 65-degree water, and on the south side of the lake, there were a few bays with 69- and 70-degree water. The bite has been good.

A lot of the muskies are transitioning out of the larger bays to hit the main basin. Some muskies are moving out of the smaller bays, and we are finding them in the 6- to 12-foot range. These fish will soon be transitioning slightly deeper, say down to 14 feet, where they will take residency on the cabbage weeds. A lot of fish are drawn to the cabbage weeds because they provide the highest concentrations of oxygen. Later these muskies will drop down to the weeds at about 16 or 17 feet of water, at most.

We’ve been tossing bucktails and letting them sink for as many as 5 seconds to allow the baits to get down to the low-hanging muskies. They are lower in the water column because of cooler temperatures there than at the surface.

Scepaniak, of Predator Guide Service, is a fishing guide on Lake Mille Lacs specializing on the esox family of fish. Visit his website at or reach him at (320) 253-7535.

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