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DaveFromMO

I'm sure this has been discussed before but I can't find it so I'll ask again. Is it "out-of-season" (and therefore illegal) to target muskies before the season opener even if you're only doing catch and release? If so, I don't understand how someone could get busted for targeting muskies when the lake is full of northerns which also go after some of the bigger lures too. I'm personally just as happy to catch a big northern as a muskie, and I'm going to be fishing the week of memorial day so I really need to know the rules and regs, if somebody to point me in the right direction I'd appreciate it.

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Parker

It is illegal to target any fish out of season regardless of whether you intend to release the fish or not. This is the actual quote from the reg's:

"You may not intentionally fish for any species during its closed season."

I know of people who have received tickets for doing just what you are suggesting. Tickets were issued based on the perceived intent of the angler. I know who these people were and that they received tickets because I called them in and talked to the CO later in the week.

I would suggest you visit the MN DNR web site and read the reg's before your trip.

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DaveFromMO

Thanks, that's what I suspected the regulations would say despite what I've been told by others. Again, my problem is that I like to fish for big northerns and often fish larger lures for them (a super shad rap is one of my favorites plus some of the newer big rapalas). I don't know how I can protect myself from being accused of muskie fishing when I'm doing that. If I can't, then the muskie season really applies to

northerns as well and that can't be the intent of the law.

Hopefully the conservation agents would only really go after someone who's obviously pursuing muskie follows or using the huge lures that are specific to muskie fishing (which I do not use). In my home state of MO I've found the conservation people to be very reasonable on "grey areas" like this, hopefully the conservation cops up there are of the same ilk, but I also realize muske fishing is a pretty big deal so it's still a concern. Thanks again for the response.

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R. Miller

If you're going after large pike and primarily using Super Shads and other larger Rapalas, you should be okay. I'd start to wonder if you had a bunch of musky lures, gear, etc. Super Shads are a nice bait to throw, but I'd consider them more on a pike lure. The hooks are much smaller than most big musky baits. You should be okay. What kind of rod and reel set up will you have?

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cjac

Hi Dave,

Place a call or email to the DNR office up there and ask them, you're hitting a great pike fishery and should be able to go after them. It all comes down to interpretation, questions best handled by the COs up there. I agree, big Raps , S Shads, etc are great pike lures, double 10 bucktails and Mad Bulldawgs may raise an eye.

Ask those that know best, and good luck!

Chris

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DaveFromMO

Well you're all making me feel better.

On my tackle I do use pretty "beefed up" stuff compared to what we use for bass fishing at home, 40-60lb fireline or spiderwire and heavier bait casters and spinning outfits. I also figured out many trips ago that fishing on Vermilion without a steel leader was the same as throwing my favorite lures in the trash can so you won't find me without those either. But, I do not own any of the monster lures you muskie guys like so much so hopefully I'll be OK.

After fishing Vermilion every year for about a decade I've missed the last two years, and I'm really interested to see if the slot limit they put on the northerns has helped the average size.

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TomWehler

Slot is working just fine.

Take a few more years to have the numbers of big fish we enjoyed in 70's.

But that don't mean we don't nail some beef'ers now and again each week all season.

Stop in DNR office in Tower on way to get some pops...they will help with any an all questions or worries to your gray area concerns.

You simply can't beat a few tried an true old lures been worken for years an years way before the muskie fish were around or the numbers of people.

If you fish pike in the north you know of what lures I type of an they have really nothing to do with muskie fish tackle...but can an will produce a muskie fish when time is right to do so.

\:\)

Good luck, be safe, have fun.

Keep on Rocken.

T.

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Cliff Wagenbach

Hey Tom. Great to have you back on the boards again!

Cliff

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DTro

I fished big pike for quite a few years up there right as the Musky boom was starting.

Without a doubt the best bait was a Northland willow leaf spinnerbait in white, with a 4-5" white twister tail trailer. Simply Deadly

If you are truly targeting Pike, it shouldn't matter at all what the presentation is.

To me, this example is for sure one of the most greyest areas in the regs.

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TomWehler

Hi ya Cliff.

I'm around some....just don't type a lot.

Been painting lots of custom lures for UK guys, beating the four hounds daily an having winter fun in the woods an on the lakes around here.

Great winter so far.....need a Vermilion Spring leap thow...I miss my place an my docks.

\:\)

Hey did ya see the Legends of Rod & Reel show we did for Mr. Schara ....aired Nation Wide on Outdoor channel three week ago.

Way pretty, lost of humor an the hounds stole the show.

Couple fish or three also. To fun....final edit was wonderful...big surprise.

\:\)

Hey...this is for EVERYONE....My wife Bonnie put a link to one of the Minnesota Bound shows we did in July 2003 on front of web page.

Simply click it...check it out for fun.....real pretty an good Vermilion summer fix for the inwter time blues I hear some get.

Fun stuff....an no lure pimpen or pushen products...we don't ever do that...ever.

Try to add couple other shows in coming weeks maybe...Legends show too maybe...real pretty footage an fun humor in all.

Lots of great pike lures work....a well built spinner works just great...color to us is a weekly deal as water color is ever changing...but white dose bag some bigg'ens.

The Northland line is ok fine but.....

\:\)

To be safe...do the spinnerbait deal as this Dtro guy mentions...good idea an they work.

Then maybe add a very large Doctor to yer bag an move up a knotch...SPEED KILLS...even in spring.

Then maybe back both up with a very large Silver minnow an your in like Flint...

Weeds fish love to kill these offerings..plus they work good on the rocks also when needed an all can be fished high, low, fast or SLOW.

Also any number of large twister tails or shads on a 1.5 to 3 oz swimming jig might just out produce everything....some big beefer's like'em...big eye's also....not the keeper kind...the kind ya horse an photo up, release...BIG SMILES!!!!

An never forget the good ol Husky minnows.... or the newer slash lure..X-RAPS...DYNOMITE...plus everything eats'em.

Way fun...cheap tackle cause they will get beat up...an DNR crew know what yer doing as they fish da pike also.

\:\)

Keep on Rocken.

Tommy

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cjac

As always, great to read your posts!!

I saw the recent replay of the Minn. Bound show, that was fun to watch and quite the fish too! Missed the Legends one, is there a link to that one anywhere?

Chris

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TomWehler

Hi Chris

If any you guys up our way...give a holler...I don't guide everyday...love to go out a play an do it most on my own or....with our four Mallard Island Marauders.

Barney, Homer J, Moe Rock an Bear Boy run the roost an are indeed my guides.

;\)

No link as it were yet that I know of to Legends stuff.

Might come around again on da tube.

Legends show is cool as it is about some fancy big names an regular guys who just fish.

Title was not to be Legends...was slated for Fish Whisperers...but others owned that name so Legends was choosen..off it went.

Really is more about the people, plus the fish...humor was a big part of our deal...just being us.

Few sneeky things tossed in by me for fun to thoughs who know me some...good for smiles.

Sujects change weekly...but mostly focus on how they got to where there are today, a bit on why...just fishen.

Pretty interesting, very pretty footage from all over an some fish tossed in.

Good for anyone likes outdoors an fishen.

So fare Al Lindner, Trapper Rupp, Dan Jennings, Wonferful Me have been on....this week a Crappie king an a catfish guy we the stars.

Kind a cool.

Outdoors channel web sites has ideas to post most of the shows but right now only a few bits have shown up on wed page of first couple airings.

Ceck it out sometime as you might enjoy it...

Back to regular stuff...LOL x 1000000

Low pound test spiderwire or a heavy mono will show yer not doing musky fish also.

A good Flippen stik dose fine for Pikes an DNR will beleive yer not trying to pull some wool...

\:\)

Honsety is very best policy eh.

I do think you will be fine...just fish, have fun...Rip some lips.

If you like spinner baits for toothy fishys I got a guy / gal team for you....

Shoot me an E-mail sometime an I will toss ya a link ....you may have heard of them....if not you will enjoy them....

Outstanding product....Love to do CALL products fer ya also. Customs to most.

Cool fer sure.

Now back to the Hackey game an indy 500.... \:\)

Tommy

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DaveFromMO

Well shoot, I thought I was bringing some "secret lure from the south" up there when I used spinnerbaits for northerns. I agree the color thing depends on the water, but even when it's clear I've done great with a chartreuse skirt and chartreuse blades (so maybe I've got one little secret anyway, no more!). The only problem with the spinnerbaits I buy around here is the bass-sized ones don't stand up to the abuse of a pike, so Tom I will e-mail you for that web site.

Thanks all for the tips and see you in the great north the week of Memorial Day. I'll be up there with my pretty wife in a brand new Crestliner Fish Hawk with a 115 Merc 4-stroke that we're waiting to pick up, can't wait to give the new boat a ride on Vermilion.

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heartattack22

Awesome MN Bound segment Tom. Great to have your words of wisdom back on the site!!!

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TomWehler

Dave...you have mail....check out those babys maybe get a few an best of luck.

\:\)

Heartattack....way cool you enjoy it.....THANKS.

We enjoy doing that stuff with them MN Bound peoples every so often an is sure is pretty eh?

Plus I'm so handsome they keep coming back. Good for their ratings.

\:\)

Tom Mackin--guy got a fish in that one is now Prez of Rapala...who would of thunk that?

Fun.

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cjac

Tom,

Are you going to be around the Blaine Expo coming up? Hope so!

The big "V" is on my list of "go to" places this summer!!

Gotta love the old Johnson Silver Minnows for pike, I once spent a week in Canada thowing nothing else! One single hook to deal with, and the pike love 'em! Same with the big spinnerbaits, one hook and maybe a trailer. Like you said, those sz. 11 & 13 Rapalas will catch anything that swims too. Let's just say I'm jealous!

Chris

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TomWehler

Hi Chris.

Aint missed an expo yet...but just had nose fixed up an just healing today.

Should OK fine by then.

Don't do the ZOO booth thing any more...I enjoy just people watching an working the crowd.

Might even go to BeeBops for swap If I can...just like most muskie fish people...have met lots an lots og nice people along the wat.

Be cool to meet you also.

\:\)

Need me some rest...see ya later.

Tommy

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cjac

Well, I'll trade your nose for my back anyday! I'm also at home on the mend, back surgery #2 for me, I'm waaayyyyyy too young for this stuff!

Hopefully I'll bump into you and formally introduce, we shot the breeze a couple times at the old Medina show, but it would be nice to talk to......... the man, the myth, the Legend! grin.gif

Chris

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