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toddrun

Good Bait Store on the way to Sag?

13 posts in this topic

Any suggestions on a good bait store on my way to Saganaga? I am coming up through Duluth, on the North Shore, into Grand Marais and up the Gunflint. I would rather not bring bait with me so I am looking for a good bait store along the way.

Thanks.

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We usually stop at Al's Bait and Tackle in Two Harbours and try to call ahead and get a idea of size and price and let him know we will be needing a couple of pounds.

When are you going up? We are there 6/22. Have you fished Sag before?

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My son and I are going part way up tonight, then putting in tomorrow morning. Its his first time to BWCA all together, my first trip to Sag, but I have been to the BWCA cnaoeing over 25 times in my life. Figured a motor trip would work best for my sons first trip and Saganaga has always been high on my list. This will be only a 4 day trip this time, but that is enough get him hooked on it I think.

Thanks for the advice on the bait shop, much appreciated.

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You can e-mail me at toad@isd.net if you want some thoughts on Sag this time of year. I tend to take guys up there without a bunch of walleye experince. I do more slip bobber fishing which works good for kids. There are some excellent spots I could point you towards if you would like.

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There's a place in Grand Marais, right on Main street near the lake, called "the Beaver Hut". Love their floating rigs (similar to lindy rigs).

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Oh, and by the way, you might try trolling big floating rapalas in 6-12 ft of water between midnight and 3 am... in the heat of the summer, especially during the full moon, night fishing with big raps can be deadly. Careful with your lower unit though.

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I would love to hear more about the 12-3am floating raps technique. I have been fishing Sag for several years and have not mastered the late night thing. I have talked to guys throwing raps in the narrows and they claim to do well, but I would have never thought of using floating raps.

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Don't forget about Buck's Hardware in Grand Marais as well. Depending on how far up the trail you are going you can buy bait up there. I think if you got it in Grand Marais you should be safe. That's what I'm gonna do!

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Oh yeah....about the Raps. Floating raps at night on the rocks and on the sand are deadly. It works great on Sag. It works great on Gull (by Brainerd) and it works great on lakes where there are weeds. Those walleye turn into a different critter at night. I've caught some nice fish using a Rapala floater. Actually, up there floating Raps tend to outperform other styles!

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the original floating rapala is my favorite lure...

I usually fish lakes west of Sag. One trip returning to the end of the trail, I spent about half an hour talking to a couple of older men who were heading out. They've been going to sag for 30 years. They always go during the full moon in July. They camp on the american side, and fish on the canadian side. They now have a good gps to keep the lower unit off the rocks. But they told me they like to fish from midnight to 3 am with large #11 or #13 floating raps in 6-12 ft of water. Apparently they look for pods of bait fish, and the large walleyes will be feasting. They said they routinely catch eyes in the 7-8lb range, and have pulled some 30+ inchers. Since then, I have spoken to a few other fisherman who use similar techniques up there. If you fish the canadian side, don't forget your "remote border crossing" and canadian licences.

I don't know how hard mike berg got hit, but it might be worth paying the extra bucks and hooking up with Seagul creek fishing camp (I don't know if that's exactly what it's called). They hook up they're clients with many trophy walleyes. Be prepared to catch n release.

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Im fishing with seagull creek fishing camp tommorow. I will post a report on how the fishing is tommorow night.

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There was an article in the Duluth Trib 2 years ago by Sam Cook about night fishing on Sag, pretty much the same story but the info I took from that was a bit different. They were trolling 10pm-3am over deeper water reefs and running raps 10-20' down depending on where they saw the bait fish on the finder. We tried this tactic and saw the clouds of bait fish along with arches below and within the clouds. We did not get any hits but there was lighting rolling in which scared us off. I will be up there next weekend and plan to try it again. One issue is we are staying in a cabin on the river, so I will need to scout out some good spots. As I previously said, I always see guys hitting the river narrows and they have told me they do really well. I never asked what they were throwing though and I have always been under the belief that you need to get down aways, so the surface rap is a new tactic to me. But I have talked to several people in the last week who have convinced me to buy some surface raps before we head out, so thanks for the info and I will report back.

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When I paddle the length of sag to our destination, I always drag a floating chartreuse rapala behind the canoe in 6-8' of water on the edge of the reef, and typically pick up a bass or 6, an occassional walleye, and once in a while a good size northern. I don't think I've ever been shut out.

My favorite bass technique is to pitch them up within 6 inches of shore, leave it sit for 2 or 3 seconds, give it a twitch, let it sit another second or two, then retrieve slowly. Typically the initial splash will spook them, they will then come back to investigate, and then that little twitch gets em.

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