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      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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Fall Walleye Bite Is Under Way
Walleye Report – Water temperatures are really falling now and we’re already looking at temps down into the low to mid 50’s on some of the shallower lakes. Larger, deeper water is holding at 58–59 degrees right now and will continue to fall throughout the weekend. We are still finding lots of nice green weeds on the deeper lakes and the fish are holding pretty tight to the weed edges. On a trip to Sand Lake this week, we found that there was virtually no action unless we fished exactly in the weeds. Thanks to the higher winds this week, the Walleyes on Leech Lake, Winnie and Cutfoot Sioux have been moving in the current and the bite has been reliable. Jig and minnow fishing is now the clear ticket during the day. We’re using 1/8 to 1/4 oz Bug Eyed Shorties and having plenty of action. Your choice of minnows is especially important right now, so shop around a little bit. The past few years we’ve found it more difficult, or sometimes impossible to locate spot tails (shiners) in the fall. But if you can get them, it will really pay off. If you can’t get the spot tails, LARGE size Fatheads, Rainbow Chubs or small/medium Red Tails will all work. In fact, if you can get a good supply of really nice Fatheads, you’ll be okay almost everywhere except maybe Leech Lake where the Spot Tail is king. Fish location remains fairly simple, primary drop off along weed edges, shoreline rock/gravel and anywhere that large schools of baitfish can be located.

Crappie – Locations are slowly beginning to change to the classic fall pattern. Moving out to the deeper weed edges adjacent to deeper shoreline breaks. If you are able to locate brush piles or crappie cribs, there will be more fish in the cover than out in the open. With the abundance of green weeds, the fish are reluctant to leave the protected cover, but they are schooling up and moving out to where you can find them. Concentrate on Crappies in the morning right now and fish them until the early run fades. Then switch to Walleye of Northern fishing during the mid day. Jig & minnow fished vertically is good, use an 1/8 oz to find them and then scale back to a 1/16 oz for the fine tuning.

Bluegills – The deeper edges of heavy weed flats are producing consistent catches of nice bluegills. Small young of the year minnows and a variety of insect hatches are providing the feeding opportunities for these fish and they have moved in to chow down. Our best approach has been to move slowly along the deeper weed edges and cast 1/16 oz jigs tipped with about 1/3 of a crawler. Keep moving until you start picking up a few fish, once you've located a pocket of fish, slow down and move a bit further into the weed bed and then fish vertically into the pockets between weed patches. We've found that keeping the jig near the bottom and fishing it almost stationary produces the best results. At times we stumble into groups of Crappies, Bass, Pike or even Walleyes. When we do, we adjust the baits and try for the mixed bag or the go with larger tube jigs and a 1/8 oz jig head and concentrate on the deeper edges of the weed flats. Locating rock or gravel mixed in the weeds will really up the odds of finding a good pocket of fish.

Largemouth Bass- Action and average size is great! Spinner baits or Rattle Traps fished near the Bulrush edges are the best way to go. We’ve had better luck if the bulrushes are located near the edge of deeper water, especially on a sharp drop into deep weed cover. Avoid really shallow flats, the water is cooling down fast and these are often several degrees colder than the drop of edges.

Smallmouth Bass-are still congregated on deep-water points and humps. Mixed rock and wood are the definite favorite right now, but rocks mixed with weeds will still hold a few fish as well. On our sunny days these fish seem to be snubbing most of the artificial baits we’ve thrown at them. But, they’re more than willing to hit a large shiner or medium creek chub fished on a simple slip sinker/live bait rig. We’ve been avoiding feed out line like you would with a Walleye because we don’t want the fish to swallow the bait. Simply troll the rig along the deeper edges of the rocky cover, when you get a hit, give the fish a few seconds to take the bait and sweep the rod to a hook set. Please try and release the majority of these fish. Smallmouth are a great resource and “quality fish” are getting harder to find. If you have an occasional fish that swallows the hook, cut the line near the hook and release the fish. They have a much better chance that way.

Perch Report – The Perch fishing has been fairly consistent although the fish seem to be fairly scattered. Most of the fish are showing up in the shallows, but there are still groups of fish located on the secondary drop offs too. Cabbage weeds with gravel or rock near by are the best bet for action. Jig & Minnow fished IN THE WEEDS and as nearly vertically as possible will be your best bet. If you think there are nice perch near by but they aren’t hitting aggressively, try fishing the jig about 6 inches off the bottom and without any action at all. They seem to prefer a really lazy presentation right now and I’ve caught lots of fish by laying the rod down and watching the tip for movement.

Northern Pike – Nice size Pike and lots of smaller ones are available in almost every weed bed right now. We’re actually having the best luck catching nice Pike using a jig & minnow. A leader made of 17 to 25 pound test mono will protect you from almost all of the bite offs. Tie the jig head directly to one end of the heavy mono and use a small swivel to attach the leader to you fishing line. This rig gives you the benefit of a steel leader, without the kinks and twists. You’ll catch more Walleye this way, because your jig still swims fairly naturally.
TheEarlyBird-Jeff Sundin

The Early Bird-Jeff Sundin
Early Bird Fishing Guide Service
Phone: 218-246-2375
North-Central Minnesota
Lakes Country

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Great report Jeff!

It's nice to read about it even tho' my schedule at work has made it impossible to get away lately! Maybe it'll work out yet!

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