Sunday, January 29th, 2023
Sunday, January 29th, 2023

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Minnesota Pro Tip of the Week: A few tricks for the coming mayfly hatch

By Vince Ekroot

With the unseasonably colder and high water year we are having, everything is behind a bit up on the Gunflint Trail.

That means the annual mayfly hatch, that does slow down the walleye bite down a bit, has yet to arrive. It typically shows up in late June, but as of this writing, it had yet to be observed.

You can catch walleyes during the hatch. But you are best off focusing on them during the middle of the day. In the evenings, when the mayfly hatch is at its peak, it is generally harder to get them to bite. The walleyes are just very, very selective then, unless you are a fly angler equipped with a fly that looks like a mayfly. There aren’t too many fly anglers that are walleye anglers, if you catch my drift.

Conversely, rainbow and lake trout generally are unaffected by the hatch. Lakers don’t seem to care. I like to troll something that looks like a bug. I build a little rig with a double ought spinner to get their attention and then trail it with about half a nightcrawler. You also want to get down a ways, say about 15 feet.

The mayfly hatch is going to get here at some point. Now you have options for productive fishing when it arrives.

Ekroot is a fishing guide focused on trout and walleyes on lakes in the Mid Trail area of the Gunflint Trail. He can be reached at or (218) 388-9942.

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