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cldboater

New to fresh water fishing

18 posts in this topic

Good day All

Well I am new to the sport of fresh water fishing. I grew up on the ocean and fished for many years. Doesn't take much to haul in a good catch

I recently got a 17ft old tri hull boat with a over hauled 65 hp motor together. Took it out on the Mississippi a few times to work out all my adjustments. Runs great and floats. So that's a plus

Ok the facts. I live in Cottage Grove and will be launching from the bluff since i have a park pass on my truck

As far as gear

For now I have an ugly stick and a small tackle box. Humminbird matrix 37 fishing system with gps. Don't laugh to hard. Working on a small budget for now as well

What works and what doesn't work as far as plastic bait?

Is live bait better? worms, leeches, minnows

Where is a good spot for newbie to practice with out pissing the vets off?

I don't have a trolling motor yet either so I will be drifting or anchoring... maybe a slow idle

I also have been reading every thing I can about river / lake fishing. Every one tells me it is way different than ocean fishing, is this true?

I am also looking to fish a species that put up a little fight.

I have no interest in eating fresh water fish. Catch and release only

Any advise any one can offer would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance. i dig the forum.. Lots of great stuff!

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Welcome to fresh water fishing, choosing the croix is a great start to alot of fun and fish. The bluff park is a really nice launch and theres lots of good areas around there, the shoreline straight across from the launch area and down, usually produces eyes . A jig tipped with a fathead is a safe bet specially in spring and fall, see you on the water! cool.gif

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Jig and minnow for walleyes, cast some shore lines shore small mouth, Check out the mouth of the Kinnikinick, drop a ball of worms to go for a big catfish, or sturgeon. Many many things you can try, do it all, try every where, you'll get the hang of this fres water stuff, and you'll find something you like. Good luck and see you on the river.

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ok so far so good... i think im just going to start out slow.. using simple set ups.. jig and minnow / crawler...

Where can a guy get a topographical map of the river.. i know its hard to get an accurate map since the river is constantly flowing and changing...

or should i just rely on sonar and plot my own points

I think i will mainly fish between 94 and prescott

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Maps at the bait shops or fleet are good. I got one at fleet for $10 that's a real good map of just the river.

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Also, don't overlook some great smallmouth fishin'! After a good morning chasing eye's, I love to drift the shore with a nice tube jig..watermelon or bleeding shad color! Also, early morning is great for a little topwater action. I mainly fish for eye's but I do enjoy catching 10 or 15 nice smallies just for fun! By the way, Power Pro 10/2 and a floro leader..that's the ticket!

Breeze grin.gif

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cldboater, you will have a lot of fun on the Croix especially if you don't care what you catch. There's a plethera of fish down there, both game fish and rough fish, that'll give you a good fight. Be careful of what you're targeting though, if you're going to target the big boys (flatheads or sturgeon) make sure you have the proper gear. I'm not saying you can't catch these fish using walleye gear but it really stresses the fish when you're fighting them for a half hour or better. I like the idea of using a jig and minnow or a crawler and a lindy rig. As for a map the hotspots map has some great information and is well worth the price. The greatest thing about the river is you just never know what you might catch. Have fun and if you see a Tracker Tundra with a couple of Mercs on the back don't be a stranger.

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well i launch out of the bluff for the first time. No sweat there. Not to many people out.. maybe 6 or so at around 6 pm last night

went right across from the docks to the east bank and worked up and down like some one said in here. Very nice river. I am amazed as to how deep it is

and WE CAUGHT FISH - nothing big to talk about grin.gif

my rig.

Old timer at work gave me a print out of 2 very interesting rig set ups to try

3 way rig and some thing called a DuBuque rig - Never used either rigs every till last night

the lady and I did pretty good with one of each set up.

We caught walleyes and some other stuff that i have no clue as to what it was since i forgot my dnr fish id print out sheet smirk.gif

here is a picture of what my friend at work gave me. He was explaining it and we googled it and found a good picture which was a big help to me. He fishes Gaul??? lake every year for walleyes and says this is the best at his lake but unsure at the river so try it any way . But we had fun.. hopefully the weather will hold out so we can go out again

I do have one question..

If we catch fish out of season and we are just doing catch and release, can we get in trouble?

IFW0410_3WayRiverRigsBlg.jpg

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If it is obvious that you are targeting walleye yes. You cannot fish for any game fish out of season.

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cldboater, yes you can get into trouble and dnr starts watching knowing that people are itching to get out and thinking they can just say they are fishing for something else. You could say that you are fishing for white bass or something like that on the river but remember they are not idiots and if they can tag you for that they will work hard to find something they can. Hold tight. one week to go for the river smile.gif

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Gull Lake is great but I like the Croix! Easier on the gas consumption too! I agree as well, hold on for one more week...Saturday...and fish that rig!

Breeze

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my usual M.O. on rivers goes as follows-

Crawlers- for when I don't care what I catch

canned corn, bread sometimes, crawlers, maybe boilies - carp

Chicken livers or cutbait - for channel cats

will be getting into flathead cats this summer- takes really stout tackle, and large (legal) livebait- I'll be trapping bullheads up to 7" for this purpose.

if you'd like to learn about a particular species' habitat and tendencies- you're best bet is to Google search for "(species name) habitat" - it's served me well.

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If you can't wait until Saturday to hit the river just head down stream a couple of miles to Prescott. As long as you're down river from the Hwy 10 bridge you'll be fine. Others on the site please correct me if I'm wrong (wouldn't be the first time) but the Dubuque rig is actually considered to be fishing with two lines and therefore you would not be able to have a second pole going on the boat if you were alone. Love the theory of the rig and one day soon I'll lose my fear of new techniques and give it a go.

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well i was out yesterday after the rain. for about 3 hours.. again fishing the area around the bluff launch site.. Using a 3" white grub plastic bait with 1/4 oz jig head. ( some one mentioned this in a post some where so was figured what the heck why not try it).. Caught a couple small bass or white bass i believe.. but i also caught a small walleye. 3 hours 3 fish on plastic.. is this normal or do i need to venture out a little more?

stick to the live bait?

just crazy, its almost a science behind it all on what and when to use vs cramming a chunk of squid on a hook and pray for the big one

But i like being out there for sure.

Personally i think the minnow's work allot better smirk.gif

Any one tried those mimic minnows? Another guy here at work swears by them

Why can you freely fish the river after south of highway 10

I think i need to read up on some dnr regs and get with the local lingo when it comes to fishing in MN. At this point I'm confused.

well i will be out this coming Sunday

I'm in a old white tri hull that i converted with a platform up front .. Feel free to swing by and offer me some pointers

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You mean you stopped using squid when you started fishing the river? Why??? smile.gif When I fish the Croix (always for walleyes but enjoy catching anything) the plastics seem to be real hit or miss. I have great success with plastics on the Mississippi along with a lot of lakes but the Croix seems to be a different animal for me. I'm positive it's more mental than anything because there will probably be 100 responses stating how they just kill the walleyes on the Croix with plastics I just haven't had much success. When I started fishing the Croix I just followed the crowd and that did me little good in the way of learning the river. The best thing I did was buy a good map and try some of the recommended techniques. Once you've found some fish keep track of everything (just like what was stated in an earlier response) and don't be afraid to try other areas of the river that are similar to the one you caught fish. One of my favorite ways to fish is trolling crankbaits. I usually use Rapala Shadraps but I also have 5 or 6 other styles in the box that I use as well. To start off I'll put a #5 on one line and a #4 or #7 on the other (depending on the time of year) and start trolling the shoreline at between 1 - 1.5 mph. I'll start off running the baits within 6" of the bottom, if I don't get any strikes I'll start bumping the bottom every so often. If I still don't get any bites I'll start banging the bottom. If it's still a no go I'll change depths, colors, lure style and/or speed (this is what I consider to be the fun part of fishing). At this point if I still have not put any fish in the boat I'll either change to a totally different technique or go home (depending on how many times my beautiful bride has called). Trolling cranks isn't for everyone but I sure do love it.

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just want to thank every one for all the good advise. i will be out on sunday .. cant wait... maybe i'll get a big one.. well big some thing.. hopefully the bluff isnt going to be to filled up this week end

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One tip I can give you on plastics as far as silverbass are concern right now is go small.I was out last wed and thurs and was on a large school of silvers,while catching them right and left I tried different plastics and noticed that they prefered smaller tubes and such compared to larger profile plastic bodies.Wether or not this has changed im not sure but thats what I observed last week..2cents ...Oh yea FYI if you catch one silver there are always alot more there to be had they love school...Good LUCK....

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well i got out on sunday. the bluffs was full and bayport was full so i ended up just north of still water . Barley got in there.. 3 spots left and i was 2nd in line to launch

Fished from there down to 94 bridge and back up.. only got 2 walleyes.. small.. maybe 18 inches..

But we got some great whitebass action right off the shore next to the anderson windows power plant. we wroked the shoreline around there and into the anderson bay i believe its called. Tons of fun

they we biting small tubes, spinners and crawlers

Was kind of bummed that we didnt get in some better walleye fishing though.. seems like that was the story on the river

heard of one guy boating 12 eyes just north of the stillwater bridge on the wis side. But i dont know if that was just another fish tale or not

Guys were boating tons of crappies fishing the bridge supports

any ways i will be out on the water all week.. maybe i will get to launch from the bluff grin.gif

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