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Print

Minnesota fishing report

December 03, 2008 at 03:33 PM

LAKE MILLE LACS
East - As of Tuesday morning, there was ice as far as the eye could see on the main lake. A few anglers have started walking to the reefs close to shore. The bays have up to seven inches of ice and Isle Bay has been producing a few walleyes, perch, and northern pike in 12 to 14 feet.
West - This side of the lake capped with ice between Sunday and Monday. If it stays cold throughout the week, there could be a chance of walking to the shoreline breaks and points by this weekend. Call ahead or check it as you go over the next few days.

LAKE OF THE WOODS
Fish houses have started popping up on Four Mile Bay where four to six inches of ice has taken hold. At Morris Point, anglers have been walking or driving ATVs about one mile from shore and both spots are producing walleyes. Zippel Bay has six to nine inches of ice and the pike are hitting at a good pace. Baudette Bay also has fish houses on it with some walleye action being reported.

LEECH LAKE AREA
The small lakes in this area offer six to 10 inches of ice. The bays and much of the main portions of Leech also are ice covered with three to five inches. The exception is Walker Bay, which remains wide open. The southeast shore of Shingobee Bay is kicking out bluegills and crappies, as is Pumphouse Bay in 10 feet. The south end of the lake is the only part of Leech where a few walleyes have started hitting but it’s limited.

LAKE MINNETONKA AREA
The big bays and main portion of Lake Minnetonka remained open on Tuesday. They skim with ice, but tend to blow open during the day. The small bays have three to four inches of ice as do several other area lakes such as Medicine and Sarah, where there are some pike being caught.

RAINY LAKE
The main lake remained open as of this writing. Ice has started to form in the bays and along the shorelines with as much as three inches reported in some areas. Look to the small bays to offer the first shot at walking out with Black Bay being a good spot for northern pike.

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH
There are fish houses on the west side from the mouth of the river to about Sugar Bay, where four to six inches of ice has set in. There are pike being speared and some decent perch being caught in nine feet of water. The main lake remained covered with ice and it will be checked later this week for thickness.

NORTHEAST METRO
Although ice depths vary, most lakes offer enough ice to walk on. You’ll find up to six inches on the small lakes, which is where most of the fishing action has started. Early reports indicate a decent northern pike and panfish bite on Demonterville Lake in six to 10 feet. Mud Lake also has kicked out pike in shallow water.

WEST METRO
Ice depths vary from three to five inches on the small lakes with less reported on the bigger bodies of water. Anglers have started walking out in a lot of areas and Hydes Lake is kicking out sunfish and crappies in less than 10 feet.

LAKE WACONIA
Although the main lake still has thin ice many of the bays and shoreline areas are starting to thicken up enough to think about walking on. The marina will be open this weekend for business so call ahead and get the latest on ice depths.

ALEXANDRIA AREA
Most lakes offer enough ice to walk on and there are some ATVs being used on a few small lakes. Look to Lake Reno during the evening hours for walleyes in 12 feet. On Lake Mary, you’ll find panfish in eight to 10 feet and walleyes in 12 to 15 feet. Lake Miltona is kicking out sunfish in less than 15 feet.

ANNANDALE AREA
You’ll find zero to four inches of ice in this area. Most small lakes have enough ice to walk on, but fishing action has been slow. Lakes such as French, Limestone, Francis, Dans, John, Pelican, and Marie are all seeing foot traffic early this week. Watch for thin ice spots on the bigger lakes.

BATTLE LAKE
The small lakes have four to seven inches of ice, but the big lakes have some open water or less ice. Walleyes are hitting jigging spoons or bobbers and minnows in 15 to 20 feet on Walker Lake, Rush Lake, Pelican Lake, and West Battle Lake. North Turtle Lake and South Turtle Lake are kicking out northern pike in eight to 12 feet. Lakes such as Deer, Star, Silver, Ethel, and Elbow are producing sunfish in eight to 12 feet.

BEMIDJI AREA
Ice depths vary from open water to seven inches on area lakes. The good news is that there’s plenty of spots to fish, the bad news is that the walleyes haven’t started to cooperate. Most reports indicate a few walleyes and panfish off the area’s small lakes, but nothing consistent at this point.

BLACKDUCK AREA
The majority of lakes has five to eight inches of ice, but the fishing has been slow. Bluegills and crappies have been especially tough to locate on all lakes. Blackduck Lake is producing perch and small walleyes in 12 to 16 feet. Jigging spoons and minnow heads are turning a few bigger fish during the evening hours.

BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA
Ice depths vary from three to six inches and fish houses have started showing up on many small lakes and bays. Sucker minnows or shiner minnows are turning pike on Lake Edwards and North Long Lake. Walleyes are hitting rainbows and shiners in 18 feet at Round Lake, Pelican Lake, and North Long. Rosy red minnows or Eurolarvae are the ticket for crappies on Upper Gull and North Long.

CHISAGO AREA
The channels and bays are seeing some ATV traffic and most main-lake areas are favorable for walking. Sunrise Lake is providing a mixed bag of sunfish, crappies, and pike in six to 10 feet. The channel between Chisago Lake and South Lindstrom Lake is producing the same. The Eagle’s Nest area on Chisago is a safe bet for panfish in eight to 10 feet. The Pancake Island area of South Center Lake and the north end of North Center Lake are worth noting for walleyes, panfish, and pike in 10 to 12 feet.

CROSBY AREA
While you have to watch some spots, most lakes offer ice, at the least, favorable for walking. A few guys have been on West Rabbit Lake in search of walleyes and found limited success. Look to Mahnomen Lake and Little Black Hoof Lake for crappies, bluegills, and pike in 14 to 18 feet.

DETROIT LAKES
The ice is in good shape with four to eight inches on most lakes being fished. Little Detroit Lake, Big Detroit Lake, Island Lake, Lake Sallie, Lake Melissa, Big Pine Lake, and Little Pine are all producing walleyes in 17 to 20 feet. Crappie action is strong in 16 feet on Big Detroit and Melissa during the evening hours. Look for sunfish on Little Detroit, Melissa, Floyd Lake, and Sour Lake along the six- to 16-foot weed edge. Northern pike are hitting minnows and tip-ups in the shallows of most lakes and spearing has been very good as well.

DULUTH AREA
Most lakes have five to seven inches of ice. Boulder Lake is kicking out walleyes and crappies in eight to 10 feet during the evening hours. The narrows on Fish Lake also have produced walleyes and crappies in eight to 10 feet. The Kamloops bite has been tough on Lake Superior, but the wind has made it difficult to fish.

ELY AREA
Small lakes have four to six inches of ice, but there was some open water early this week on the big lakes. Anglers are just starting to fish the bays and shoreline breaks of Shagawa Lake for walleyes. The bays of Birch Lake near Babbit are producing quite a few pike, mainly on ciscoes. Look for the walleye and crappie action to pick up as soon as more anglers venture out.

EMILY AREA
Most small lakes now have four to six inches of ice with less on portions of many bigger lakes. Look to Perry Lake for crappies over 20 feet of water during low-light periods. On Lake Mary, northern pike are hitting sucker minnows in 10 to 12 feet and you’ll find some crappies in 15 to 20 feet.

GRAND MARAIS AREA
Most small lakes are covered with six to eight inches of ice and most big lakes are skimmed over. There hasn’t been a lot of people fishing, but a few walleyes have come off Devil’s Fish Lake and Devil’s Track Lake in 10 to 12 feet. On Elbow Lake, you’ll find walleyes in six to eight feet.

GRAND RAPIDS AREA
The big lakes still have open water spots, but there’s as much as 10 inches of ice on many bays and small lakes. Moose Lake is producing walleyes in seven to 16 feet during the afternoon and evening. Tip-ups and minnows are turning pike in the bays of Lake Pokegama and on Big Splithand Lake, and Shallow Lake in 10 to 14 feet. Look for crappies on Big Cutfoot in 21 to 26 feet and on Little Cutfoot in 19 to 21 feet. Sylvan Bay on the Mississippi River also has kicked out crappies in 14 feet.

HACKENSACK AREA
There’s still spots with open water on the big lakes, but four to seven inches of ice is the norm on most areas people are fishing. Birch Lake is producing walleyes in 19 feet of water and spearing for northern pike has been good in the shallows of Birch. Stoney Lake is a safe bet for walleyes in 15 to 18 feet. Squaw Bay on Woman Lake is kicking out sunfish in less than 12 feet via waxworms.

LAKE OSAKIS
The north end of Osakis has up to six inches of ice, but the main lake has some open water. The walleyes are hitting in front of Holiday Resort on Osakis in 20 feet. The northern pike are hitting along the weedlines of Osakis as well. Minnows under bobbers are turning walleyes on Maple Lake in 18 to 20 feet.

LAKE VERMILION
Ice fishing has begun with anglers reporting up to six inches of ice in the sheltered bays and less on the large bays. Krons Point, Larson Bay, and the Narrows are favorable for walking. Early fishing reports have been limited, but most people have just started getting out.

MANKATO AREA
The wind has kept parts of the big lakes open, but anglers are finding up to six inches of ice in many areas. Crappies and sunfish are biting at a good pace over six to eight feet in Mud Bay and Baker’s Bay on Lake Washington. Walleye action is improving with shiner minnows off the northwest landing on Lake Hanska in six feet.

McGREGOR AREA
You can expect to find up to five inches of ice on the areas being fished. Walleye action has been slow, but Lake Minnewawa is providing a steady northern pike bite. The narrows on Minnewawa also have produced crappies and sunfish. On Camp Lake, sunfish are being caught off the shallow weed edges.

ORTONVILLE AREA
You’ll find four to six inches of ice on most lakes. Anglers have just started getting out so fishing reports have been limited. The best bite is coming off Long Tom Lake where walleyes and crappies have been taken in 11 feet during the evening hours.

PARK RAPIDS AREA
Ice depths vary, but up to nine inches has been reported on some lakes. Walleyes have started hitting fathead minnows in 23 feet on Fish Hook?Lake, Potato Lake, and Lake Belle Taine. Look to Big Mantrap Lake and the Crow Wing Chain for crappies in 22 to 25 feet. Straight Lake is producing bluegills in 14 feet.

RED LAKE
Six to 10 inches of ice seems to be common in most areas of the lake. The bite has not been fast and furious, but anglers are catching walleyes, northern pike, and an occasional crappie in eight to 11 feet of water. Generally speaking, everyone is catching fish, but nobody seems to be pounding them.

ST. CLOUD/EDEN VALLEY AREA
With the exception of a few spots on the big lakes you’ll find ice thick enough to walk on. Crappie action has picked up on Rice Lake in 12 to 18 feet. A few crappies have been caught on Horseshoe Lake in 20 to 24 feet as well. On Big Lake, you’ll find crappies roaming over 12 to 16 feet. Look for a few walleyes off Lake Koronis in 12 to 22 feet.

SAUK CENTRE AREA
Anglers are walking on many lakes with five to six inches of ice reported. Walleye reports have been limited but the panfish have started hitting. Look for sunfish on the west shore of Lilly Lake during the morning and afternoon hours. Crappies are going well off the north point of Guerney Lake in 14 feet and in Red Barn Bay on Sauk Lake in 20 feet.

STARBUCK AREA
Most lakes offer four to six inches of ice. Jigging spoons or plain hooks and minnows are producing walleyes on Lake Minnewaska in 13 to 15 feet of water during the evening hours. On Lake Emily, you’ll also pop walleyes and big crappies during the evening hours in less than six feet.

WILLMAR AREA
The big lakes still have some open water, but three to six inches of ice is reported on most lakes. Look to lakes such as Big Kandi, Elizabeth, Lillian, Solomon, Ringo, Long, and Wagonda for walleyes. Panfish reports have been limited.

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