Minnesota Fishing Report A few die-hard walleye anglers continue to work 30 to 50 feet of water on Lake Miltona and Lake Ida for walleyes. A vertically presented jig and minnow is working best on these lakes.
Interest in open water angling has dropped off considerably this week. You might still find a few walleyes, northern pike, and largemouth bass on the drop offs of Clearwater Lake. Cedar Lake, Pleasant Lake, and Clearwater are the area’s best opportunities to catch crappies before ice up.
Eagle Lake, Otter Tail Lake, and Battle Lake continue to produce walleyes in 10 to 20 feet of water. A jig and shiner minnow is working best during the afternoon hours.
A few anglers continue to work Lake Bemidji and Lake Plantagenette with minnows or crankbaits for walleyes. These fish continue to be scattered so cover a lot of water in depths of 12 to 25 feet.
There weren’t any boats out this week. Most anglers seem to be hunting or waiting for ice fishing.
If you can withstand the cold, you’ll find active walleyes in 16 to 40 feet of water on Gull Lake. The best reports are coming from 22 feet with rainbow minnows or shiners on a jig.
Fishing customers have been limited. A handful of anglers continue to catch walleyes by trolling Husky Jerks in 12 feet of water between Chisago Lake and South Lindstrom Lake.
Island Lake is kicking out a few walleyes near the bridge. A jig and minnow is working best and most of these fish are being caught by anglers fishing from shore.
Crappies and perch are biting in the channels of Lake Sissiton. An occasional walleye is caught off the docks of Budd Lake with a minnow.
Many shorelines and boat harbors are skimming over with ice overnight. The occasional angler who braves the cold is catching walleyes on a jig and minnow.
LAKE MILLE LACS
Trolling shallow-running crankbaits on the rocks remains the best option for walleyes during lowlight periods of the day. Hunter’s Point, Hennepin Island, Three Mile Reef, and Big Point are holding fish. Look to Isle Bay and the Twin Bays for perch in eight to 12 feet of water with a jig and minnow.
If you wanted to fish, and not many people have, expect a few walleyes to be hitting minnows in most large bays. Work the sharp breaks or deep weed edges horizontally. Sucker minnows also will produce some northern pike on the shallow weeds and channel areas. The bass bite has wound down throughout the lake.
LAKE OF THE WOODS
The changing weather has limited the number of anglers, but those who brave the elements continue to catch walleyes. Jigs and shiner minnows have turned walleyes in 15 to 18 feet of water at the Morris Point Gap. At the Rainy River, 20 to 25 feet has provided steady walleye action. Trolling Rapalas around the islands of the Northwest Angle also is a safe bet for walleyes.
Walleyes continue to provide excellent action with good-sized fish hitting large minnows and jigs in 28 to 35 feet of water. A couple of dandy muskies were caught and released on 10-inch Grandmas along the rocky shorelines and islands. The whitefish spawn is now in full swing throughout the shallows.
Anglers have been nonexistent and probably will be until there’s some walkable ice. The shoreline breaks will be the first spots to look for perch in 10 to 14 feet of water. If open water fishing is a must, you might find some walleyes and perch on the points and shoreline breaks with a jig and minnow.
Boats have been few and far between since the deer season started. Speculation around the lake is that the deep humps in Walker Bay and the points still may produce walleyes. A slowly-presented jig and minnow combination worked vertically may be the best bet, with crankbaits providing a secondary option on the shallower points.
Walleyes still are biting during the afternoon hours on Lake Tetonka. If the weather holds out for another week, look to the Minnesota River for walleyes as well. The narrows of Madison Lake are kicking out crappies and an occasional walleye, with minnows being the primary offering.
As long as the weather allows anglers to get on the Mississippi River the smallmouth bass and walleye bite should be good. Look for turns or deep holes to be holding the majority of fish. A jig and minnow has provided the majority of action.
The only walleye reports worth noting are coming off the Rainy River where a jig and minnow has turned a few fish in 20 feet of water. There weren’t any boats on the main lake this week.
Becker Lake and Horseshoe Lake continue to produce a few sunfish in six to 10 feet of water, although the size and numbers of these fish has dropped off markedly. Look to Horseshoe to produce a few walleyes in 22 feet of water. Bass and northern pike activity has been limited.
A few people caught walleyes on Lake Minnewaska over the weekend, but since then the reports really have been limited.
NORTHEAST METRO – The St. Croix River continues to produce walleyes in 15 to 20 feet of water. Big Marine Lake and Clear Lake also are worth checking for walleyes as long as the lakes remain ice-free. These fish will continue to hit crankbaits or a jig and minnow. Panfish, bass, muskie, and northern pike action has been nonexistent.
SOUTHWEST METRO – There hasn’t been anyone fishing over the past week and the only tackle sold has been for the upcoming ice fishing season.
Most anglers have put away their boats until next year and are hunting or waiting for the upcoming ice fishing season. A few people continue to fish from shore on lakes such as Andrew, Ringo, Nest, and Games with limited success.