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JDM

Will The New Slot Keep You Away?

26 posts in this topic

It has been a very busy season so far on the big pond. With the new slot going into effect today, the likely hood of keeping any fish is greatly diminished. Will it make a difference in your decisions on whether or not you go to Mille Lacs? I could argue both sides of this, but in roughly 10 trips to the lake this year, there have probably only been 10 keepers in the boat, and yes, they went home to the frying pan. I have really enjoyed catching and releasing many of the large fish I have seen this year, but I also like an occasional meal.

I have to admit that I will now be more open to trying different lakes or rivers. Maybe even different species besides the beloved walleye?

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No. To be fair, I stopped fishing walleye June 2nd and won't fish for them again until ice-up. IMO, there's more exciting fish species to target in the lake. wink.gif

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I rarely keep anything from that lake. I just don't need to. I go to Mille Lacs to catch numbers and big fish. I also have no problem targeting Perch or crappies for a meal. That lake is too good to worry about finding eaters. I end up keeping more through the ice than I do during open water.

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NOPE!! But I might try some other lakes for eaters while up there.

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Can't keep us away as we just got a place up there last year. Am however thinking about trying to learn how to fish muskie & northern. If the walleyes are that overfished I would just as soon leave them be till ice (or next spring) Even catch and release can be iffy this time of year.

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No,. I can get Panfish to eat, and Walleyes on other lakes closer to home.

It's toooo much fun catching those "Pigs". Can't wait to get back up there in about two weeks.

Who knows , we may never have a chance like this for awhile to catch that many

big fish, especially if there is a strong perch showing next year.

Looking forward to the Fall Crankbait fishing at night.

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its not keeping me away! i am thinking about diversifying my fishing though.

my brothers' wifes' brother is/was a professional bass fisherman. ive been trying to get him up to mille lacs for some walleye fishing and it hasnt happened. so the other day i told him i would do some research into where the smallies are and he can show me how to catch them. ive been following all the threads and it kind of sounds like walleyes...anywhere with the right structure.

however, it sounds like big walleyes are not sticking to structure... i didnt go saturday because of the heat, but im planning on this saturday. i want to try trolling shadraps on three-way rigs. i need some of the easy fishing... lol. running the boat in any wind, backtrolling or guiding a drift, fishing leeches on long leaders on any kind of structure, mud, gravel, rocks, takes a lot of concentration keeping the presentation right. the snags are still unavoidable... it just seems so nice trolling, not even having to hold my rod. i can smoke a cigar in total comfort!

regards,

minnesotatuff

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Never. I'd go if it was Catch and Release only. smirk.gif

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It won't keep me away, but I am not sure I understand why they did it. Don't they usually open the slot in summer to 22"? Oh well, that's not what anybody goes up there for anyways. Where else can you not even turn a head at a 27" walleye

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The slot won't but the $3.38 gal today in Ham Lake might!

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I know it's controversial, & easier said than done, but reading all of the positve feedback on this forum, if these types of regulations were in place on a number of other good walleye lakes, you wouldn't think crowding & pressure would be an issue. People would still get fish to eat, just not the ones that are the most fun to catch. I would hope the people that just want to take anything home they can are by far the smaller percentage, & probably not the ones that frequent the lakes the most either.As with many aspects in life it is the few that ruin things for the many. I think the more you use the resource the more you come to appreciate it, at least I would hope so. So why not strive to satisfy the ones that do frequent the lakes the most, they're the ones that are feeding the economy of the areas, & the State (with all the purchases related to fishing.) There are PLENTY of fish to eat without targeting the fun ones. We are all consumers by nature, & regulations just keep our consumtion in check.

Thanks for listening. Just a thought L2f

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It won't keep me away, My family has two cabins rented at Appeldorn's in August and we can't wait. We stayed there earlier in the year and it was great. I will still fish but a true sportsman will fish for anything and just feel lucky to be on the water. I just hope we have good weather. See ya in August Paul.

Scott from Elk River

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It will keep me away from Millacs. I like to go on a trip and have walleye for shore lunch. Now I will just go spend my money somewhere else where I can do just that. IMO the best part about a fishing trip is the fresh shore lunch walleye. I don't even care if I take fish home. But cooking with the family is a fun part of the trip. Catching fish is fun of course. Sure i could keep soething else on Millacs and eat it for lunch but IMO nothing is like fresh walleye. So I'll just stay at a different resort, on a different lake. I think we'll maybe head up to the Park Rapids area or Rainy. Speaking of that I better cancel the reservations and get on new ones.

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I won't be back. I've hardly caught any big fish and it has really put me off because everyone is talking about the "HOT" bite.

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The new slot won't keep me away. There are a lot of 14 to 16 inch fish in the lake. We boated many of them since the opener. Sometimes the big ones get to be pests though. smile.gif

What will keep me away is +90 degree temps with no wind. frown.gif

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Lets see a guy kept 10 keepers in 10 trips I averaged about the same with about another 3 fish if my hooking mortality was 10% I believe that this catch rate was pretty common considering I talk to EVERYONE I encounter that has fished Mille Lacs on or off the lake. So how do we get even close to the quota. The DNR has no Idea. If they do I would like an explanation on how they determine what the catch rate is.

You can do some simple math 4 fish limit X 1000 anglers per day every day X 2 lbs average size of a keeper x 50 days so far =400,000 lbs ....

assuming there are 1000 angles on the lake every day since opener and they all limit out every day plus the hooking motality:

100,000 lbs hooking mortality = 20,000 5 lb fish which at 10% of the total fish caught and released is 200,000 fish / 1000 anglers per day is 200 / 50 days = 40 fish every angler has caught and released in the protected slot EVERY DAY! that means some caught more others caught less... PERSONALLY I dont believe that catch rate are that high what has been your experience ? lets take a pole of FMers her to see how many fish they caught and kep and released

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I'm with Flying V. . although I wish I knew what the dnr had already calculated just prior to me paying for a slip and a place to sleep for a year blush.gifgrin.gif.. I've caught plenty of BIG ONES so It's not all about the size of the fish that I catch anymore,I just love to fish, but when my daughter catches a 24" thats half the size of her this is stuff she'll remember for the rest of her life. my g/friend loved it when she hauled in a 27.5" biggest fish she ever caught, and she finally caught her first keeper and she was almost as excited grin.gif at least we're getting out and doing it getting some fish a few nice pictures and great memories. I'll always find a few keepers. Now I just have to find a nice pannie lake near by grin.gif.

TOM from Blaine

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Hey guys don't forget that Mille Lacs is home to monster smallmouth and muskies. grin.gif

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I think thats an reasonable assesment that anglers were catching 40 walleye a day on average. I guess i would rather the DNR play it safe vs having an overharvest that could negativly affect the lake for many years to come. Another note i recall is that the mortality rate was a little higher than 10% due to the hot weather.

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Quote:

I think thats an reasonable assesment that anglers were catching 40 walleye a day on average.


You have got to be kidding me ooo.gif

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Aren't you guys worried about the lake running out of forage again? I'm a big proponent of releasing any walleyes over 21" or 22". I've never fished Mille Lacs, but from what i've heard there's getting to be so many big eyes in this lake that they're gonna run outta food eventually. Didn't that happen a few years ago? I know a buddy of mine was fishing smallies out there and got a couple of big walleyes, he said 26-29" and he said they were all 2-3 lbs under average. I saw a picture of the 29" and it looked like it was about 5 lbs tops.

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I'm not kidding at all. The bite was great earlier in the year just because you didn't experience such luck some of us were managing to catch 40+ a day.

As for the forage issue that will affect the lake but the fish i've caught this year sure looked healthy. Maybe they should impose a special reg. on perch grin.gif JK. There are still plenty of smaller eyes out there, for the most part your not going to find them out on the flats they are holding in the bays. I'll still continue to fish regarless of the slot i like to fish and catch big walleye and Mille Lacs is the place to due so. If the CPR and mortality rate becomes and issue and quotas are nearly topped out the DNR will close the lake.

I'm sure many ppl will see this as unethical but not anymore than the bird hunter that wounds a bird, looses one a field due to heavy cover. The big game hunter that missplaces a shot. Everyone here obviously love the outdoors and sometimes the result arn't anticipated or postive. Thats what make it so exciting you can't predict mother nature.

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ASMOLEY, I'm sure you had your good days of fishing like everybody else, I'm saying that a 40 fish per day per angler average is not a realisitc catch rate. I interpet that as If I have 2 guys in my boat for an 8 hour outing your boating 80 Walleye's and as an average some boats do better and some worse?? Not!! It's off to the lake, probably won't fish much this weekend, too many chores to do around the cabin frown.gif

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Fishuhalik, they might be thinner now, but in the fall they will be nice and thick. They have been light in the summer time for many years that i have seen.

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I just returned from the lake a few hours ago. There were 4 of us in the boat which according to your figures should have averaged 160 walleye boated by us. How many did we catch in 8 hours? ZERO!!! I talked with another boat of 3 guys and they caught ONE and another boat of 3 guys and they also had caught ONE. Those don't sound like such great catching odds to me. In fact, I did not see anyone stick a landing net into the lake today. I know it sure wasn't from trying that we got skunked because we were rockin and rollin with the waves until it started to rain so we got off the big pond. As for baitfish in the lake, we graphed many swarms of baitfish that were suspended at 25-10 feet over 30-35 FOW. On the flats and next to the flats nothin. Everything we graphed was deep and not biting. Again, lots of forage on the graph today. It was still nice to be in the boat. We were surprised nothing was biting as the barometric pressure began dropping today.

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