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Minnesota fishing report

February 03, 2009 at 11:31 PM

LAKE MILLE LACS

East - Walleyes continue to be pulled off deep structure - 24 feet or more during morning and afternoon. There’s an improved night bite on the eight- to 12-foot rock reefs, which provides about two hours of action each night. The best perch reports are from deep water. Get off the flats, work deep basins in “no man’s land” and pop a lot of holes.

West - Look to the flats such as Seven Mile, Inner Eight, and Seguchie’s for walleyes in 22 to 30 feet. There seems to be a 50/50 split on the number of fish caught on jigging spoons and setlines. Anglers who stay on the move are catching some jumbo perch. The best reports are coming from deep water, away from structure, in 32 to 35 feet.

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LAKE OF THE WOODS

Anglers are finding mixed results - one house does well and others close by are experiencing a tough bite. The most consistent walleye and sauger reports are coming from 30 to 34 feet about eight to 10 miles off shore. Work the mud flats and reefs with jigging spoons or jigs and frozen shiners. The bite at the Northwest Angle has been much more consistent with the Oak Island area producing numbers of fish in 25 to 29 feet.

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LEECH LAKE AREA

Walleyes remain active during low-light periods on the deep humps in Walker Bay. Northland Buck Shot spoons and minnow heads are producing the most fish. Perch action is strong in the north part of Walker Bay between Moore’s Point and Sand Point in 10 to 12 feet. Pine Point and the Walker Narrows also are holding perch in eight to 12 feet. For bluegills and crappies, look to Shingobee Bay during the last hour of daylight in 12 to 14 feet.

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LAKE MINNETONKA AREA

Northern pike remain active on the 12-foot weedlines of Lake Minnetonka. Panfish also can be had on Minnetonka, but plan on sorting through numbers of small fish. Work the smaller bays in 12 to 17 feet. On Lake Independence small crappies and sunfish are being found suspended over 30 to 35 feet. Walleye reports have been limited.

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RAINY LAKE

The big northern pike have started hitting ciscoes in the Rainy Lake City area in 18 to 20 feet and near Birch Point in 32 to 36 feet. Look for walleyes off Birch Point, the American Narrows, and Rainy Lake City in 16 to 22 feet. The walleyes have started biting on the east end of the lake now that the slush is settling and anglers can get to it.

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LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

Perch are scattered and tend to bite best with a few days of stable weather. Look in 20 to 38 feet on Moses Bar, the Snaghole, Sugar Humps, and Sugar Bar. Work the tops early and late and slide off the deep edge during midday hours. Look for walleyes in 18 to 22 feet on the “island” during low-light periods. Northern pike are being caught in the perch and walleye spots throughout the day.

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NORTHEAST METRO

Centerville Lake is producing panfish and pike in 10 to 15 feet during midday hours. Look to Forest Lake and Bald Eagle Lake for crappies during the evening hours in 20 feet. Sucker minnows and tip-ups are turning northern pike and bass at Long Lake, Demonterville Lake, and Lake Jane in 12 to 14 feet.

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WEST METRO

Crappies remain active in 12 to 14 feet on Hydes Lake and Whaletail Lake during the evening hours. Lake Parley started producing sunfish and crappies in 12 to 20 feet. Tip-ups and sucker minnows are triggering northern pike on the weedlines of Pierson Lake, Mitchell Lake, and Lake Zumbra.

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LAKE WACONIA

Crappies are being found suspended over 20 to 25 feet in Wagener’s Bay and south of Pillsbury Reef during the afternoon and evening hours. Anderson’s Reef is giving up a few walleyes late at night in 12 to 14 feet. The 12- to 15-foot weed edge on Center Reef is worth noting for northern pike. Look for sunfish in nine to 11 feet in Waconia Bay, off Pillsbury Reef, and near Nelsons Flat.

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ALEXANDRIA AREA

Lake Darling and the bays on Lake Ida are giving up sunfish and crappies in 14 to 20 feet. There’s evening crappie action on Reno Lake and Lake Mary in 10 to 12 feet. Walleye reports are minimal, but pike are being taken on shallow weedlines of most lakes.

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ANNANDALE AREA

Crappies are suspended and biting during low-light periods over 30 to 40 feet at Clearwater Lake, Buffalo Lake, and Pleasant Lake. Look to Lake John, Lake Marie, and Pelican Lake for sunfish in less than 10 feet. Walleyes are tough to come by, but pike are active in 10 to 14 feet at Clearwater, Pleasant, and John. Tip-ups and sucker minnows are producing fish during the morning hours.

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BATTLE LAKE

Walleyes are hitting jigging spoons and setlines on West Battle Lake in 25 to 30 feet, at Otter Tail Lake in 12 to 20 feet, and on Rush Lake in 20 to 25 feet. Pike are active on West Battle, Otter Tail, and South Turtle Lake in 14 to 16 feet. Look for suspended sunfish over 20 feet at West Lost Lake, East Lost Lake, and Ellingson Lake. Crappies are suspended over 25 feet on West Battle and West Lost lakes.

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BEMIDJI AREA

The perch remain active on Lake Bemidji in 20 to 35 feet. Crappie minnows and spikes are working best on small jigging spoons. Grace Lake is kicking out crappies and sunfish along the 10- to 12-foot weed edges. Occasional walleyes are caught on Bemidji and Lake Plantagenet on setlines and minnows over 20 feet. Northern pike action has been limited to small fish on most lakes in less than 12 feet.

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BLACKDUCK AREA

There’s an evening walleye bite on Blackduck Lake in six to 12 feet. During the day, you’ll find perch on Blackduck in 18 to 22 feet. Look to Island Lake for a few walleyes during low-light periods in 10 to 12 feet. Bluegills and crappies continue to be caught on Pimushe Lake in 20 to 35 feet or in 15 to 20 feet on Gull Lake and Rabideau Lake.

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BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA

Look for suspended crappies over 15 to 30 feet on Round Lake, Lake Margaret, Nisswa Lake, and Gull Lake. Walleyes are hitting shiner and rainbow minnows during low-light periods on Gull and Round in 20 to 35 feet. Northern pike can be had with tip-ups and large minnows on the shallow weedlines and in the bays of most lakes. The best sunfish reports are coming from less than 12 feet on most small lakes.

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CASS LAKE AREA

A few walleyes are being caught on the 18- to 25-foot breaks on the main-lake bars of Cass Lake. Northland Buck Shot spoons and minnow heads continue to work best. Perch are now being found in less than 10 feet on Cass. Look to the shallow sand areas with some grass. On Pike Bay Lake, walleyes and perch are being caught in 20 to 30 feet on jigging spoons. Travel is improving, but still difficult throughout the Cass Chain due to slush.

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CHISAGO AREA

Look to Sunrise Lake for pike during the day and crappies at night in eight to 12 feet. On Chisago Lake, you<

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CROSBY AREA

Setlines and shiner minnows continue to produce walleyes on the deep weed edges of Serpent Lake. Sunfish and crappie action has picked up on lakes such as Little Rabbit, Milford, Black Hoof, East Rabbit, Crooked, and Bay. Northern pike are an easy catch with tip-ups and sucker minnows on the weedlines and flats of most lakes.

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CROSS LAKE AREA

Walleyes continue to be taken on jigging spoons and minnow heads in 16 to 30 feet on Pelican Lake, Crosslake, and Whitefish Lake. Large sucker minnows are producing northern pike on the old weedbeds of most lakes. Work small glow jigs and waxworms for panfish in 14 to 20 feet. Jigging spoons tipped with minnows are producing some lake trout over 45 to 60 feet at Trout Lake.

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DETROIT LAKES

Sunfish are hitting in 12 to 15 feet and crappies are going well in 12 to 20 feet at Little Detroit Lake, Deadshot Bay, Lake Melissa, Sour Lake, and Floyd Lake. Walleyes remain active during the evening hours on the 15- to 20-foot humps and breaks of Big Detroit, Sallie, and Melissa. Northern pike are hitting sucker minnows on most lakes in 12 to 15 feet.

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DULUTH AREA

The sun and wind last weekend busted up the ice on Lake Superior, eliminating any ice fishing this week. Walleyes continue to be caught in Duluth Harbor from Park Point across to the Wisconsin side in 10 feet. Tip-ups and smelt are turning pike on Rice Lake in seven feet. Fish Lake continues to produce crappies during the evening in 12 to 14 feet.

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EAST-CENTRAL MINN

Look for suspended crappies on Green Lake during the evening hours in 22 to 25 feet. Blue Lake is producing sunfish in 12 to 18 feet, but plan on sorting through numbers of small fish. Long Lake started giving up panfish and northern pike in relatively shallow water throughout the day.

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ELY AREA

Stream trout and lake trout continue to be picky. Chubby Darters are producing some lakers at Burntside Lake over 50 feet during the morning and evening hours. Kastmasters tipped with Berkley Power Bait is producing an occasional stream trout on Dan Lake and Miners Lake. Look to Farm Lake for a few walleyes, and Sandy Point on Shagawa Lake started producing good-sized perch.

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GRAND MARAIS AREA

Chubs and ciscoes are producing lake trout, most of which have been suspended, on Trout Lake over 40 feet and on Lake Saganaga over 55 to 60 feet. On Poplar Lake, chubs also are triggering lakers, but tighter to the bottom over 20 feet. Splake are hitting waxworms on Musquash Lake in 12 feet and on Esther Lake, waxies are producing rainbows and splake in 10 feet.

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GRAND RAPIDS AREA

Look for suspended crappies on Trout Lake over 40 feet. Lake Pokegama continues to produce walleyes in 17 to 26 feet and panfish in 17 to 20 feet. Bass Lake is giving up panfish in 17 to 20 feet as well. Shiner minnows are turning splake and lake trout over 28 to 50 feet on Larson Lake. Look to 20 feet of water on Kramer Lake and Taylor Lake for brook trout, rainbows, brown trout, and lakers. Anglers on Big Trout Lake are finding lake trout suspended over 40 to 60 feet.

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HACKENSACK AREA

Crappies and sunfish are being caught in six feet of water on Ten Mile Lake. Woman Lake started giving up good-sized perch in 12 to 15 feet. Jigs and fatheads are turning the bigger fish. Walleye action is limited, but tip-ups and minnows are turning some pike on the weedlines of Pleasant Lake and Birch Lake.

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LAKE KABETOGAMA

Slush is a problem for anglers trying to reach the best walleye spots. Some fish have been taken early and late in the day with jigs and minnows in 28 to 35 feet. The west end of the lake started giving up good-sized perch in 32 feet. Small jigging spoons and minnow heads are working best during the day.

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LAKE OSAKIS

Crappie action has picked up during the evening over 30 to 40 feet from Buck Point to Battle Point. Eurolarvae is best for sunfish on the north end in 12 to 22 feet. Northern pike action remains very good throughout the lake in 12 to 20 feet and a few walleyes have been taken in front of Holiday Resort in 28 feet.

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LAKE VERMILION AREA

Glow jigs are producing walleyes during low-light periods in 18 to 32 feet on Lake Vermilion. Pelican Lake is providing the area’s best crappie action during the evening. The lakes have firmed up, but snowmobiles remain the best mode of transportation.

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MANKATO AREA

Crappies have provided steady action on Lake Washington in 22 to 28 feet and on Duck Lake in 20 to 24 feet. Lakes such as German, Jefferson, and Francis are safe bets for crappies in 20 to 30 feet. Look to the east bay on Madison Lake for sunfish and crappies in five feet and Church Bar on Madison for crappies.

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McGREGOR AREA

It’s been tough to get a good feel for the bite due to the lack of anglers on the ice. There was some decent sunfish action reported off Lake Minnewawa last weekend in 10 to 14 feet, but it slowed as soon as the cold weather arrived. Crappies also have been caught, during low- light periods, on Big Sandy Lake. The bigger fish have been found suspended in the 20- to 30-foot holes.

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PARK RAPIDS AREA

Fish Hook Lake started giving up more walleyes during the evening in 25 to 30 feet. Look to Big Mantrap Lake and Fifth Crow Wing Lake with sucker minnows for northern pike in 16 feet. The Crow Wing Chain continues to produce bluegills in 14 feet and crappies are being found suspended over 30 feet on Eagle Lake and Island Lake.

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RED LAKE

The big pike continue to bite most walleye and crappie presentations. The majority of fish has been caught within three miles of shore in less than eight feet. Walleyes are scattered, but active in eight to 12 feet. It seems like there’s a different area that produces fish each day. Setlines and jigging spoons are both turning fish when they start to feed.

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RED WING AREA

Ice anglers are finding consistent panfish action around the Baypoint Park docks in eight to 12 feet. Walleyes and sauger also are being pulled through the ice in the Frontenac Beach area in 25 to 30 feet with jigging Rapalas or Buckshot spoons. Open water walleye fishing is an option in 18 to 20 feet at the Coville Park and dam areas of the Mississippi River.

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ST. CLOUD/EDEN VALLEY AREA

Sunfish have been tough to find, but crappies are hitting on Clear Lake, Cedar Island Lake, Long Lake, and Horseshoe Lake in 12 to 22 feet. There’s a steady walleye bite during the evening hours on Lake Koronis in 22 to 30 feet. Waxworms are producing rainbow trout on Mud Lake in four to eight feet.

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SAUK CENTRE AREA

The east side of Maple Lake continues to provide good sunfish action in eight to 12 feet. Look for suspended crappies over 40 feet in Red Barn Bay on Sauk Lake. Lilly Lake is kicking out sunfish and crappies in 28 to 30 feet. Northern pike action has improved with large sucker minnows on the weedlines of most lakes.

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STARBUCK AREA

Sunfish remain active on the Glenwood end of Lake Minnewaska in 12 to 14 feet. Crappie and walleye reports are limited, but northern pike are hitting sucker minnows on the Glenwood end as well. Expect plenty of eating-sized pike from 12 feet of water during midday hours.

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WATERVILLE AREA

Crappies and sunfish remain active during the morning and afternoon hours on Lake Tetonka and Lake Francis in 12 to 17 feet. The shallow weeds on Clear Lake are holding northern pike, most of which prefer shiner minnows. Clear also produces a big walleye or two during low- light periods in 15 to 17 feet. Setlines and shiner minnows also work best on the eyes.

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WILLMAR AREA

Sunfish, crappies, and northern pike are hitting during the day on Willmar Lake in 12 to 20 feet. Look for suspended crappies during low- light periods in the deep hole located in the middle of Eagle Lake. On Diamond Lake, anglers are finding a mixed bag of fish including walleyes, perch, and panfish over 12 to 20 feet. Crappies also are hitting early and late in the day on lakes such as Florida, Nest, and Games.

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