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cozzene

Mississippi smallmouths . . . . .

10 posts in this topic

I'm thinking of trying Mississippi smallmouths in early June instead of making my usual trip to Kab/Namakan area. The problem is I've never fished the river in Minnesota, and have no idea as to where a good segment of the river might be in the Brainard/Grand Rapids stretch or launch sites, campgrounds, etc.

So, boys, I'm needing your help and advice if you would care to share a few suggestions. There room in the boat for one more, too! Thank you kindly!

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cozzene,

I'm not sure about spots between Brainerd and Grand Rapids, but if your willing the strech between Brainerd and Little Falls came be nothing less than great. Quiet a few fish and a real shot at a 20+.

The river runs very shallow for a great portion of that stretch so larger boats are not the way to go (I prefer a canoe). Find eddies, pools and falling trees along shore and you should find fish. I prefer to live bait using leaches and small minnows that time of year. If you prefer artificals I would suggest topwaters like frogs and slashbaits like the rapala X-raps in the mornings and evenings, small shallow running crankbaits during mid-day (usually in deeper pools and around rock piles). I hope this helps some. As the time gets closer, repost here and I can give you a few more precise starting points at that time, if you chose this area to try. good luck!

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Anyfish thanks for the post... My son and I were seriously thinking about floating the river from Brainerd to Little Falls this spring in his canoe... We thought 3 days on the river would be about right and that the smallie fishing would be good... I would think there are could places to camp in between.

Is it also worth taking a Muskie rod/reel and a few lures along?

Will check back on this in late May...

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If your willing to come a bit farther south, the stretch from Monticello to Dayton can be pretty spectacular that time of year. I canoe it all the time and there are some good places to comp along there also (have had my kids with camping 5 and 9).

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There are some GIANT musky to be had in that part of the Miss. I have gotten a bunch out of there chasing the bronze backs. Topwater is the way to go during low light. I read an article once about a guy who lives in MN during the summer just to fish smallies between L.F and Bnerd. All he uses is a 3/8 oz tandem buzzbait. He takes the skirt of also. All he uses day or night rain or shine. But to be sure there are some great fish in there.

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If you want to bring muskie tackle, bring it as said there are muskies to be had.

Camping site are there Crow wing state park and numerous islands along the way. Most islands are privatly owned although. We have camped on many that were unposted without any problems, you could maybe look in a plat book to find the ones owned by the state.

Three days should be a great time you'll be able to afford yourself time to really fish some spots, and enjoy the wildlife (deer and otters especially) I think you'll enjoy the trip.

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All, thanks for the input... We are really looking forward to fishing this part of the river and spending 3 days should really be good...

I also like to fish buzz baits in the river.. Smallies just love them and it is great to see large smallies blast out of the water to grab one.

Chisox... we have fished below Montecello and down to Dayton in the past...really good water for smallies.

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The Rice Lake area right in Brainerd can be good. I watched an Al Linder fishing show one day were he was chasing smallies and I know he was on Rice Lake, although he never said. You can take that part of the river north forever, its beautiful.

There is a ramp at Lum Park on the east side of town and one at French Rapids by the airport. You can access south of the Potlach dam on the north side of town by cemetary hill.

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I float the Mississippi from the HWY 6 bridge north of Crosby to Half Moon Landing by Trommald in the canoe regularly and really slay the smallies. Beautiful stretch of river with great fishing not to mention easy to find and use landings.

I have run from Aitkin to HWY 6 landing with much success a couple times as well.

The Mn DNR has good maps of the Mississippi that show landings/access' and camping areas as well. It is broken into 4 sections, if i recall correctly.

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The mississippi river can be a very interesting expirience, to say the least. The key is timing. If you are planning on going in june, the water will still be at its higher spring levels and on its way down to its late august drought stage. The river can change 1-2 ft in level in the matter of days. Try to avoid going after a large rain has fallen. After a huge down poor, the sediment on the shores and rocks gets drained back into the river and it tends to muddy up the water and, consequently, hurts the fishing. When it comes to water levels on the "sippi", the lower the better. The water will be clearer and the fishing will be much better. The only problem with waiting till the late summer is the danger of dingin a prop, as the water is no deeper than 2 ft in some spots. Me and my bro went out late august and the prop got clunked against a log or something and we had to float about a mile to get picked up at the next landing. Be aware of the conditions of the river and you will have a good time.

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