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ice fishing maniac

pool 4

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ice fishing maniac

anyone been on the river lately going tomarrow cant wait

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Cooter

Good question, depending on the weather I'll be there Fri afternoon for the first time. Is the limit 5 of each walleye and sauger over 15"? Any reason to bring anything other than jigs?

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bearplott

The limit on Pool 4 is 6 total in any combination for walleye and sauger. The is no size limit on the sauger. Walleye must be 15". I would personally launch at Evert's. Dean the manager there, will set you up with anything that is working. He is about the straightest shooter I have ever meet that is working a bait shop and won't sell you a bunch of stuff you don't need.

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HateHumminbird

Cooter:

I'd second the advice posted here on Dean at Everts. He'll do his best to put you on fish, and get you the colors and types of things that have been working as of late. He's one of the few fishing pros on the river that's crazy enough to cough-up good spots :).

The most popular presentations up there usually revolve around a jig-head, but blade-baits are gaining in popularity. What you tip your jig with, the style of the jig, and color of offerings is wide-open. Lots of guys like hair jigs with a bit of meat, esp. for vertical jigging as you drift current seams. Jig/plastic combinations with everything from 3" power minnows to Ringworms are what alot of guys also favor. The ringworm combinations historically work well for pitching shallows, as well as dragging against the current (SLOWLY!).

Jig/minnow isn't necessary most often, but lots of guys like to stick with what's always worked for them.

Fish what you're confident in.

Joel

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markkstanley

Some of the river rats are dragging 3way rigs with #5 and #7 Rap floaters with good success. I experimented using a 3way rig with ringies on a very light jigheads with good results (Dean hinted to me it might be owrth doing). Gives you better control over your jig location and depth than just outright dragging. Had one jig set to be about 1ft up and the other about 3 ft. Sauger were hitting the higher bait more than the bottom one. A technique worth trying if it gets real tight with boats.

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harvey lee

We fished up by the dam today and also south from there. All fish caught in 28' fow or deeper. Didnt seem to want hair jigs today at all. Switched to a jig and power minnow and the bite picked up. Mostly sauger and 1 smaller walleye. The suprise of the day was I foul hooked a sturgeon on an ultra light with 4# test. Good thing it was a smaller version as that one took awhile. Numerous other sturgeon were being caught. Seems all the sturgeon that I saw caught were closer to the dam in the faster current.

Many were also using a jig with a minnow. If one didnt keep their jig very vertical, you would not get bit. Bouncing the jig off the bottom very vertical was without a doubt what every one that was catching fish was doing.

Very little ice in the river and the public landing was ok to land at.

Wish I could go back tomorrow as it was beautiful out there.

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Cooter

Thanks guys, keep the info coming - Fri won't be as nice as today but still will be nice to hit open water.

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mskyfshntchr

Was there Sunday afternoon until dark.

Nicer fish were caught dragging ringworms upstream. During the day- cotton candy and firecracker worked the best. As it got towards dark, went to the camo ringee that Dean sold us. He was right again!!! Other dark colors worked also.

We went up by the dam for a few minutes to see what was happening...LOTS of smaller saugers with some smaller walleyes mixed in, coming out of 50-60 FOW. Lima bean green seemed to be pulling in fish. We went back to dragging shortly after that.

It wasn't a super hot and heavy bite, but we did better than most. Biggest sauger was 21.5 and looked like a football it was so fat. Biggest walleye was 19" and skinnier.

We were dragging in 20-24 FOW and found fish hanging on bottom depth changes.

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hhguide

When you guys say your dragging jigs are you doing that right on the bottom or off the bottom?

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Rainman

Usually right on the bottom is how we do it.

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ice fishing maniac

Well we gave it a try today my buddy hooked up on a 23 inch walleye other than that not a bite just cant figure that river out guess i just gotta keep trying good luck everyone

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mskyfshntchr

We try and keep them off of the bottom. Usually, if they are dragging the bottom, you aren't getting bit. As you are going upstream, get your jig set until you don't feel the bottom. Then if you drop your rods backwards, giving some slack, you should be able to feel contact with the bottom. That is where you want to be.

ifm--not a lot of people are getting into many big fish now. Water temps are still in the mid 30's. Warmest we saw Sunday was a little over 35. The best days aren't here for another 15 degrees or so, so it will get better for you.

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markkstanley

Dragging is a little tricky to do right. The objective is to pull your jig just above the bottom. You do not want to pull it across the bottom. If you are constantly ticking the bottom you need to reel up. Boat speed should be around .5mph going upstream and just slightly faster than the current going downstream. Right now a 1/4 to 5/16oz jig works when headed upstream 3/16 downstream in the 20ft range. Shallower water means even lighter jigs. To start a dragging pass I cast the jig behong the boat and let out line until I fell a constant tick. Do two full reels and you should be OK. CHeck your depth from time to time by dropping your rod tip towards the jig . Your line should go slack. If not let out more line. Generally strikes are very light. A slight tick or just a little more weight on the line is it. I use braid with a 8ft fluoro leader and a medium light rod to improve the feel. The new Limit Creek 8ft rod has worked very well for me this spring.

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ice fishing maniac

thanks alot for all the advice

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hhguide

Yea thats alot of good information Thanks Guys! Do many guys use Two Rods or mostly just stick to one unless your in a tournament?

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Loves-Fishing-Guy

I allways use two rods, but I don't use fireline I use 6lb hi-vis suffix or sensation hi-vis. The best speeds are from .5 to .8 mph upstream & like Mark said just faster than the current going downstream.

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youngie22

A buddy and I had a pretty good day today. We stayed pretty close to the dam, in the center of the channel. Big fish was a 19" sauger. Had a couple walleye, but most all where sauger. We stayed deeper than 28 fow for the most part over 40' seemed best for action. Very very light bit, would suggest trying a stinger, and set the hook hard and often. Then reel slow... enjoy the fight; and some still need a poke in the air bladder. Good luck to all, see ya down there again soon I hope!

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skunked_again

Please pull these fish up slowly. They can easily die if their bladder is popped out. I have seen countless fish swept up by eagles. There is no reason to reel these small fish in so fast.

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mskyfshntchr

I use two rods when dragging. Can take some getting used to, but not really that bad. Have a good seat to sit on and having longer handles on your rods help! Just sit on them when you are messing with the other one!

I use 8# power pro. When it is below freezing this is a little difficult because it freezes up quicker than mono. Use a soft tipped rod or looser drag and you are all set.

Could probably get by with 4-6 power pro. With the dirty water, you aren't scaring any fish with the line.

All of our luck was going upstream at .4 mph on Sunday.

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ice fishing maniac

well just got back i would have to say i tap out two full days without a bite maybe i cant figure it out i better go to the seminar down in roch in a few weeks cause i can not catch fish

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markkstanley

I usually use fireline crystal for dragging. If there are just two in the boat I use two rods. FYI rodholders work just fine for dragging with fast or extra fast tips medium light rods. I've caught them with the rod just laying down in the boat too when retieing a jig or something. IceFM all I can say is keep at it. Happens to us all. If all else fails hair jig and a minnow in the scour hole will always get you a fish or two.

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youngie22

I bet you got bit, but didn't know it, Most bites where just a light nose tap, it was kind of crazy; I would say aww, I think that was a hit, next thing you know my buddy set the hook and he reeled 'em up. and vice versa. It was very fun, but a little windy, which makes the hands cold faster.

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HateHumminbird

 Originally Posted By: skunked_again
Please pull these fish up slowly. They can easily die if their bladder is popped out. I have seen countless fish swept up by eagles. There is no reason to reel these small fish in so fast.

Great information, and some serious advice.

For those folks talking about fishing the deep water, almost surely they're speaking of the scour hole in front of the dam. For starters, most of the larger fish we've been getting into have not been in the scour hole. Also, even when you play these fish slowly, they can still be pushing out their bladder and not survive the release.

Please exercise caution if you're going to fish in this location, and maybe better yet give some other areas a try.

Joel

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hhguide

One thing that I Notice that should be a huge concern for fisherman though is pulling the fish out of 38 feet of water or deeper a new STUDY says that anything deeper than 38 feet of water 70% of those fish die and sometimes it not right away but within a week! So fisherman look out of where your pulling those fish out from the big fish aren't always deep. and watch that depthfinder when you get below 38 feet start looking to go back up that bank.

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youngie22

I believe the same study also said the rate went up dramatically when air bladder is pierced w/ needle or syringe. Anyone know of a U Tube video to demonstrate this. I learned it fishing in the ocean jigging deep water and reminded of it while fishing w/ walleye "pro".

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Naturboy
      Those were caught from a shallow lake (17’) in 9 feet of water at the bottom of the first shoreline break. I was using a UV buckshot and minnow head since the water was murky. The crappie is still swimming the walleye not so much. I didn’t get the exact location. Sorry  
    • Sunset Lodge
      Hello from the NW Angle!

      Minnesota fishing has been most productive in 20-24 feet of water.  Guests are bringing home their limits of Walleye and Sauger with the occasional Perch and Northern mixed in. Fish have been most active early and late in the day and the bite has been terrific. The use of electronics continues to be very beneficial with fish taking jigging spoons, jigg’n raps or rattle baits.  Snowmobile ttrails on the Minnesota side continue to be maintained and are in great shape. We are still making ice, with most spots at over 30 inches. 

      North and East of us in Canada, big Crappies are coming in on light tackle setups out of 30 feet. If you are looking for walleye, they are everywhere!

      Until next week, 

      Sunset Lodge
    • JBMasterAngler
      On the Bayfield side of the bay, the target depth is typically 10 to 40 ft. The basswood island area is where they go after lakers. There’s a plowed road that goes out there. As of last week the ice was about 20 inches in that area, might be thicker now. Check out the Bayfield webcam, you can see what kind of activity is going on.
    • Jarrid Houston
      Wanderer, stop in at the River Rock bait shop in Ashland and they will get you pointed in the right direction.  They are always pretty cool about that.  Fishing near Ashland off of 2nd landing can be good.  Don't need nothing more than regular walleye gear, and some tip-ups and really there is no rhyme or reason where a guy should set up shop. Its a pretty wide open water and the fish that live there are always on the move. For us, most often, the sit and wait pays off.  It has been slower as of late, but still some fish..  Good luck, JH
    • cat44
      Anybody know if there is a pressure ridge/ice heave out in front of the Warroad Access? I know ice conditions will change throughout the coming weeks. Looking forward to getting after some pike.  The last few years there has been a pressure ridge there, last year it went from Springsteel over to Swift. And we've been up there plenty of times when there hasn't been one at all. Just curious to find out what conditions are like in that bay. Thanks!
    • Hoyt4
      Most likely our last trip up this year unless we go up for crappies but i'm running out of weekends. We had another great trip this weekend the fish are so fat this year more than I remember in the past.  Got my old man out for a good walleye bite he had a blast and caught a ton of fish. One day they just attached the bait as it was coming down they would come up and smash. Next day you put in the bottom and not even see the lure on the vex bring up a tad and they would smack it. Fun and a lot of snow hitting yesterday when we left.
    • PRO-V
      Agreed!!
    • SaintPaulPaul
      Switch to regular Budweiser and they seem to just jump out of the hole. No, seriously the way I improved my landing success through the ice was to go to small treble hooks. One small one on a 6' leader, a weight and Colorado blade above the leader seems to work for me. If you are on the flag right away, you don't risk gut-hooking them. I also recycle my Power Pro musky line and put it on tip ups. Also, I should add that I always  have a jaw-spreader and 8" forceps for quick and easy hook removal.
    • Iowabrewcrew
      Funny...seems like when the Emerald run slowed down up there 4-5 years ago, the fishing followed suit!
    • anyfishwilldo
      they only ran for a couple days.  They have them on the canadian side but its illegal to transport live bait across the border
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