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Team Otter

"First Break" Bite...

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I spent the day on Elysian poking around on a bunch of different spots that have been producers in the past or just looked 'fishy'. I had pretty much the same game plan as last week on Tetonka and Sakatah other than that I was going to focus on the "first break" fish more than anything. Throughout the course of the day, I casted stick-style and shad-style crank baits to wind-blown shorelines and points with not much to show for my efforts. On this particular day, the walleyes wanted a piece of meat with their presentation. I started my day by concentrating on rip-rap and gravel areas with crank baits but did not find a whole lot other than a few slimers. After a few hours had passed with nothing, I decided to make a switch to sand and weeds along with trolling, pitching and dragging jigs and minnows. To start off with, I back-trolled and snap jigged weed edges adjacent to bull rushes and just got punished by the northerns. It was unbelievable how aggressive they were. But, I decided to leave them for someone else and continue searching. Well, my searching paid off to a point. I ended up settling on a point that included a mudline, downed timber, sand mixed with gravel and some weed stubble in 8 - 9' of water. A real smorgasbord of structure! I dragged jigs and minnows through this area on my first pass and then pitched jigs and minnows to shore on the drift back. The dragging boated nothing but the pitching on the drift back helped me put two 'eyes in the boat between 12 - 14". Nothing huge but the right species. I repeated the same thing on the second pass and caught one 13" fish dragging and three 13" fish pitching. Hmmm...slip the anchor in the water up-wind of the spot where I was pitching to? Yes! I spent the rest of the afternoon, anchored, pitching jigs and minnows to an area the size of a "welcome" mat and would pick off a fish about every 15th cast. Not fast action by any means but there were fish in the area. The top side of the "first break" was holding the most fish but the better quality fish were about half-way down the ledge sitting in 5 - 6' of water. If you got to the outside edge, northern! Most of the fish were in that 13 - 14" class but I did manage to sort through a dozen or so of those fish to get to some 15- 16" fish. I didn't keep anything today but for those of you looking to fill your fry pan, Elysian would be a great opportunity. In that same breath, be sure to use common sense when keeping these fish. A 14" minimum is a good rule of thumb for any angler. As they say, let them go so they can grow!

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How's the water look? Is it still green. Last time by it looked pretty bad.

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It was still pretty green on Saturday.

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There is a significant contrast from the N end to the S end but overall it is not too bad. I expected it to be much worse but then again, I don't let water clarity affect my decision on whether or not to fish a lake aorund here. That kind of thing comes with the territory.

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What was the water temp. I know the shallow lakes cool and warm faster then the deep lakes. Gorman was in the mid 50's Sunday and Tetonka was in the mid 60's on Saturday.

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55.0 - 58.0 F

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Is there any particular time of year that the "frog bite" starts up? Any certain water temp to look for? It seems right now the bite is better towards evening....does the fall bite get hot during the daytime ever?

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Eric,when the frogs jump into the water. wink.gifGotcha buddy.

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That's what I call quite the revelation! tongue.gif

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I know,sometimes these things just come to me.Its simply amazing. wink.gif

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That's funny! grin.gif Thanks for the insightful tip though! laugh.gif

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my grandfather would call that a firm grasp on the obvious... but then again, maybe not.

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The "frog bite" is time-driven. If you see frogs crossing county roads, gravel roads, highways or other roadways into a body of water that holds 'eyes, this is what can trigger the bite. 2 years ago on Lake Washington I was able to be part of a bite with a friend of mine that I will never forget. Keep your eyes peeled when driving to area lakes...

Fall fishing will progressively get better during the day as things stabilize. Typically, by early to mid-October day time fish will become more active. But, you'll never top evening and all night action.

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