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    • Rick

      Minnesota Fishing Report Clubs - ONLY 20 FREE MEMBERSHIPS Per Area - Join Today - FREE   03/08/2018

      Fishing Minnesota has added a new menu item (see above) called Fishing Report Clubs. It's a way to keep the really good fishing reports coming and being shared only with those who also provide detailed fishing reports. We will only approve new members who request to join if they have already posted a recent fishing report in the area forum, associated with the Fishing Report Club area  you want to join. Initially we are going to limit the number of regular memberships, in the Fishing Report Clubs, to the top 20 members in each Club, to those with the best frequency and quality fishing reports provided in the club and less so in the regular fishing report forum open to all members. The higher quality fishing report reserved for the club of course. If  you want see detailed fishing reports/tips  around your area and will share your detailed fishing report as soon as you join, then Join Now! Some of the clubs are starting to fill fast. Use the Fishing Reports Club link in the Menu above (after you've posted a fishing report in the regular area forum) and request to Join.

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Steve Foss

Burntside Bash final details

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Steve Foss

Hey all:

Here’s the thread for final details for this year’s Deb Radosevich Burntside Bash. The Bash starts at 8 a.m and runs as long as people want to hang around on Saturday, Jan. 26. More details below!

For those of you who are new to the bash, it’s the sixth annual gathering, and this year we have dedicated it to the significant other of a good friend to all on this board — Skippers Kid.

For those of you who have been following the thread on this same board about Deb, you know what her condition is, how long she's been in the hospital and what a difficult physical, spiritual and financial toll this has taken and will continue to take on her — and the whole family.

In re-naming this and dedicating it to her, we are also going to donate the proceeds of the Bash to her, and will accept donations in the form of checks written to Debbie Radosevich from those many, many of you who can't make the Bash but still want to help out. Anyone who wants to can mail those checks to me at: Steve Foss, 57 W. Chandler, Ely, MN 55731. Or Frank DeLuca, 5382 Jentoft Rd, Saginaw, MN, 55779 and of course if any of you see us walking around and want to donate, just hand it over to us and we'll keep it safe until the time is right.


1. We're not planning any admission fee, and later in the afternoon we’ll be handing out tickets for a drawing for smaller prizes such as lures, lake maps and caps.

2. There will be a silent auction all day. Prizes include:

MarCum VX-1 Three Color Flasher donated by Fisherman's Corner and Swap Meet proceeds. Fisherman's Corner also donated Five $10 Gift Certificates

A 2-day stay in a brand new sleeper ice fishing shack from from Appeldoorn’s Sunset Bay on Mille Lacs (weekend rental value $725). The shack has 8 holes with Rattle Reels and features “onboard power,” 2 queen bunks, 2 twin bunks, oven with range, microwave, indoor bathroom, TV/DVD Player, underwater cam, fireplace, ceiling fan, and so much more. You can get more info and see pictures here.

A gift certificate for a wedding/party DJ package from Robert Burrington, who is Little Perch 2 on FM (value $300.)

Two tickets for the annaul Grand Superior Lodge wild game feed. All you can eat and drink (value $90). And a one-night stay at the lodge (value $120.)You can find out more about GSL here.

Your choice from Vermilion guide Cliff Wagenbach of either a half-day guided open water trip or full day ice-fishing house rental on Vermilion. Click here for more information.

A framed, signed matted print of a wild black wolf from Steve Foss Images. (value $120). You can view that image here.

A gift certificate from JustinG good for two 18-hole rounds of golf (cart included) at the Ely Golf Course (value $100.)

A gift card from Gander Mountain (value $100.)

A large selection of hand-tied flies of many styles and sizes made by FM/HSO member Kallista.

A framed, signed print of a male pine grosbeak from Finn Bay Photography (value $85.)

And a lot more stuff like rods, reels, Gander Bucks, and life jackets.

3. Cheffrey also has generously donated his chef skills, and we will be offering some type of brat or other meat combo plate for $5 or so, which will mean a lot of folks won't have to bring their own food and prepare it themselves.

4. Anyone who wants to make a separate donation at the Bash can simply give it to Surface Tension or me. All the aforementioned money will go to Deb.


Updated 1-23 (final update) There is 16 inches of hard ice in most open locations, with slush absent in those areas, though as always slush can come and go without warning as ice cracks and shifts. Very little snow on the ice, making travel with ATV or on foot as easy as snowmobiling. People were driving full-sized vehicles on the ice at Van Vac Sunday, Jan. 20. There had been more slush but it has been frozen solid. There is still some slush in protected bays and along shoreline because those locations froze early and took several big dumps of snow.

We're still not going to have people parking anything but sleds/wheelers at Bash HQ. Even with the cold temps there won't be more than 18 inches of ice, and parking multiple vehicles and 100 people and all our gear in one area is simply too dangerous, so don't plan on an HQ parking lot.

For those without on-ice transport, there’s good fishing right off the south shore of Van Vac within easy walk of the landing, and we’ll have a few sleds so we can pull folks to nearby spots. A note, if you’re being pulled, make DARN sure your gear is lashed down tight so we don’t have things falling out all over the place and making the day harder. If you have two-way radios, bring 'em and tune 'em to channel 7.


From Tower, come northeast on Hwy. 169 about 18 miles and turn left (north) on County Road 88 (Grant MacMahan Blvd.) Continue on 88 for a couple miles and take a left on County Road 404 (Van Vac Road). Continue for about a mile and turn right at the big brown public access sign, driving CAREFULLY downhill to the access. From Ely, C.R. 88 is about three miles southwest of town on 169.


Bash HQ is about 100 yards out from the Van Vac public landing. You can’t miss it. The access facility is two-tiered, with a small parking lot right by the ramp and a larger one half way up the hill. In years when people can drive full-size vehicles on the ice, the lots are big enough. In years like this one where there’ll be a lot more folks on foot or on sleds/wheelers for the Bash, the lots won’t hold everyone, so we recommend pulling over only on the NORTH side of Van Vac Road to park after getting your gear on the ice. It’s a road with a lot of full-time residents, and we don’t want to make things too hard on them. The north side of Van Vac Road is the side toward the lake.


When we leave the Bash we want to make sure there isn’t even a cigarette butt left behind on the ice. We’ve had over 100 folks at past Bashes and once we’re gone, we’ve left nothing behind but some holes, some slush and a few dead minnows. The people who live on and use that lake are our neighbors, and we here at HSO/FM are careful to always stay on good terms with the neighbors!

So, friends, as well as coming to the best event on ice and pursuing the most aggressive fish under the ice in North America, you can help out one of our own FM family.

See you all at the Deb Radosevich Burntside Bash!

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • tipupsonly
      Ice fishing has exploded to the point where one should worry about LOTW, Red, Mille Lacs, etc. Fortunatley,  LOTW is massive. However, the north end of the US waters are getting hit harder and harder. It’s insane how many people are on the lake on weekends. The amount of pressure on any lake is a turn off to me personally. I’d rather catch less fish away from the crowds and it’s getting harder to get away. The slot is the key on this lake and so many. I do think the limits could come down or the slot tightened, but it doesn’t NEED to yet. No one cares about the sauger but they keep you and your flasher busy. 4 and 4 is a good number but maybe you go to 3 walleye and 5 sauger in the winter? Most buckets are filled with more sauger anyways.  It’s amazing it keeps kicking them out. 
      This topic comes up again from time to time, and it's a good thing to be conservation-minded about this amazing fishery.  Since this is an open forum, I'll share a few of my observations of this lake.  Please keep in mind, I currently live 1 1/2 hrs south of the lake, and I've fished this lake for roughly 40 years of my life.  I'm also a very conservation centered person, and I'd be the first in line to make personal sacrifices to see the long-term improvement of this lake, and it's surrounding wildlife. These are issues I find troubling. 1) Summer resort guided fishing pressure.  Literally dozens and dozens of launches leave the resort docks every morning during the open water season, with hundreds of guests.  These launches invariably return each day with coolers full of walleyes, day after day after day.  Even though this harvest is closely regulated, I worry about the long-term impact this level of harvest might have on the fishery. 2) Sport fishing pressure during the Spring Spawning run up the Rainy River.  Although the allowable harvest (daily bag limit 2/person) is very conservative, I still worry about the impact this catch and release fishing pressure has on the overall spawning pattern of these fish.  Yes, there are millions of fish in the river, but there are also thousands of anglers catching and releasing these fish, many large spawning females, during a critical time in their reproductive cycle.  I'd personally like to see them left alone during the spawn.  It's not allowed on inland waters.  I'm not sure why it's allowed on these border waters? 3)  A body of water this size (and in consideration of the overall increase in sport fishing pressure) should have more Conservation Officers assigned to it's management.  I'm not sure how many of you routinely read the CO reports from this lake, but each week the few officers we do have canvas large sections of the lake.  There isn't a day that goes by when they don't find multiple people overharvesting fish, fishing without proper licensing, fishing with too many lines, or fishing with unattended lines.  I believe the reason why this behavior is so common is because most people know it's unlikely they'll ever be checked by CO's while on the lake.  I really think we'd see much less of this behavior if there were a few more CO's regularly assigned to enforcement on this lake. These are issues I'm pleased to see have been changed. 1) The overall harvest of shiner minnows during the fall run up the Rainy River.  When this first really got going it was a "Silver Rush", and the harvest of minnows was out of control.  Everyone was seeing dollar signs in their dreams.  There's no way to quantify how many 5-gallon buckets full of minnows were lifted from the river each night, but it was a free-for-all, and there's little doubt it was having a negative impact on the forage base of the entire southern basin.  In my opinion, it's likely one of the reasons why the Fall Walleye run up the Rainy River trickled down to darn near nothing for a few years.  There were WAY fewer minnows going up the river.  Since then, the MN DNR has implemented reasonably stringent regulations on the overall harvest of this incredibly important resource, and it's my humble opinion that this one single conservation agenda will greatly help to stabilize this whole ecosystem.  2) Commercial netting has either been eliminated altogether, or dramatically reduced and closely regulated across the entire expanse of this lake...including the Canadian side. 3) A much more conservative slot limit was placed on Northern Pike.  I don't know how many of you were fishing this lake 25 years ago, but I was, and I distinctly recall watching people fishing pike in the spring and stacking them like cordwood on the ice.  Again, a free-for-all.  Large groups (6-12 people per group) tip-up fishing, and killing dozens and dozens of big spawning pike, day after day after day.  Putting a stop to this has had a major impact on the number of trophy pike in the southern end of the lake.  There's very few places in the WORLD where you can almost guarantee catching multiple trophy-sized pike in a single day of fishing! Additionally, a much more conservative slot limit was placed on walleyes, and their daily bag limit per person.  It's truly astonishing how many 20-26 inch walleyes are now in this lake!  It's these prime reproductive females that are the future of this fishery, and from a conservation standpoint protecting these fish is critical to generations of fish to come. Lake of the Woods is almost certainly the best walleye fishery in the world.  You can go out there anywhere, and I mean ANYWHERE, drop a  line and catch some fish.  That's where this discussion needs to be put into perspective.  Has there been a pretty dramatic increase in fishing pressure?  Yes.  But please keep in mind, particularly during the ice season, the vast majority of sport fishing pressure is confined to a pretty small portion of the lake, and according to the DNR creel counts, the largest percentage of angler harvest occurs during the winter months. When we're lined up on a fairly thin strip of ice on the southern shore of the lake it seems darn near impossible that ANY fish could go without being caught beneath the thousands of fish houses.  But take a moment to look to the north.  It's the north end of this lake that is it's saving grace.  There are literally THOUSANDS of square miles of water out there that goes completely untouched by sport fishing every year.  We can see, on a clear day, 30-35 miles north across the southern basin, but Lake of the Woods runs another couple hundred miles north of the southernmost islands (Oak, Garden, Big Island, etc.).  It's connected on the Western shore to Lake Winnipeg and the Red River of the North by rivers.  It's connected on the Southeastern shore to Rainy Lake and countless other bodies of water beyond, by the Rainy River.  To say this body of water is huge is a gross understatement.  One could spend a lifetime exploring this water and you wouldn't put a scratch in the tip of the iceberg! Many years ago (25-30 yrs?) I was talking with a couple CO's out on the lake while ice-fishing.  I still do this today every time they come around.  It's great to discuss their conservation ideas with the source.   Anyway, we were talking about the overall impact that sport fishing has on the lake.  One of these CO's told me this.  "We could open up Lake of the Woods to UNLIMITED sport fishing, no limits, and it would have NO long term impact on the walleye population in this lake!"  The other CO agreed. I'm not sure I agree entirely with this perspective, but knowing the lake as well as I do, I don't think these folks are too far off on their guess.  This lake, including it's vast untapped water in Canada, and including all it's tributary rivers, bays, bogs, streams, and connecting waterways, is a fish producing factory!  We are SO SPOILED by this lake!  Where else can you go and actually think catching ONLY 15-20 fish is a pretty crummy day of fishing?!?! But again, in my humble opinion, it's NEVER wrong to be conservative with the natural resources we have in this great country.  When you do all the studies, and evaluate all the populations, and complete all the mathematics, it still boils down to a finite number of living creatures for all of us to share.  Taking care of these resources, and being good stewards of what we have is never the wrong thing to do. On a side note, I could certainly be wrong about a few of my personal observations.  I'm not so foolish or prideful to say I'm always right about everything I say.  These are just my observations, coupled with a love for this lake.  I'll be the first to admit I may not have all my facts perfectly straight. I honestly miss topics of conversation like this one on this site.  It's a good question, and a good post.  For a few years there it looked like this website was rapidly spinning down the t-bowl.  I'm happy to see it appears to be making a slow comeback!  
    • Rick
    • VermilionGold
      What kind of dock are you looking at adding to? I had a lift dock extended a few years ago, they were able to weld a new section to the existing dock and add an “L” section.
    • VermilionGold
      Thanks to those that have PM’d some contacts. I plan to use mine for boat storage, but if you read the regulations on Boathouses or WOAS structures there is no requirement to put a boat in it.  They cannot be used for human habitation though. Ok, carry on with your discussion.
    • Big Kype
      Minnesota, the land of 10,000 rules where it's barely legal to fish.

      The main selling point is that the JawJacker and Autos are a conservation tool. It sets the hook right away as soon as the fish bites. So a lot less fish get hooked deep and die after being released. There are limits on all these lakes anyway so it's not like people are going to over-fish lakes because the limit is the same regardless of what you use to fish with. There is a rule in the Minnesota rules that says you can't fish with spring loaded hooks. A spring loaded hook is actually a device from the 1920's and 30's that was banned because when a fish bit it would somehow latch onto the fish's mouth and disfigure destroy the fish it clamped down so hard. So the rule dates back to the 1920's and 30's and was put in the regs to ban that specific device. You might be able to find these spring loaded hooks somewhere like a fishing equipment collectors guide. So they have forgotten the specific reasoning behind that regulation and interpret the bent rod as being a spring loaded hook now which it is not and deviates from the original intent of the regulation. To change laws and regs you almost need to have some sort of a lobbying group, like a sportsmans group to pick up the cause to push the issue or talk with your local state government officials to pick up the cause. In Wyoming a CO once was saying that if a sportsmen's group or activist group comes to them and shows how the regulations have changed in states around them and they feel like they are falling behind the times on certain things then they will review the issue and change the regs if they feel that is necessary.
    • eyeguy 54
      nice fishies! 
    • monstermoose78
      I think tulipees are eating walleye fry  Or the spottailed shiners
    • monstermoose78
      Nice gills!
    • leech~~
      That's what we keep hearing and it sounds good. But, I'm starting to think our DNR fisheries doesn't even know how Jello works!