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Sportland_Bait

Walleye Opener 2007!

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Sportland_Bait

It's almost here. Where is everyone setting their sights this year? We'll be busy at the bait shop getting everyone set up. But I have a strong feeling that Gull will be on fire. Round should be good too, and Mille Lacs is King. The bait tanks will start filling up in a few days. Be sure to stop in and check out the new look of the shop, we made some changes over the winter. Plus we will still have the famous free cookies while they last.

Jason Erlandson

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pegleg

Hey Jason, what does the landing on Round look like this year? Last fall it was very shallow and tough to get a boat in and out of there and from what I have been hearing from Mille Lacs the resorts will be using tractors to get boats in and out because of low water.

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Sportland_Bait

I guess I haven't been over there yet to check. I know that most of our lakes came up a little with the rains we were getting a couple of weeks ago. I'm sure that after a couple of boats load up/drop in there should be a lane running through that sand. As soon as I get down there I will check and report back. I know that I have to drop some boats in there next week. Otherwise if someone else gets down there please let us know.

Jason Erlandson

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TrophyEyes

Anyone fish Pelican for opener? If you do, where have you found them in the past? Are they usually on shallow rocks, sand breaks, weed edges, or just here and there? I traditionally fish Mille Lacs for opener, but this year we are going to try our luck at Pelican for the weekend and Monday at Mille Lacs.

What methods work best on Pelican? Bobbers (leech vs. minnow), lindy rig, jigs, slow cranks, or even small spinners?

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B420

Trophy,

I hit pelican up for opener and usually do quite well. Like to get out before dawn and hit the shallow bite either casting a jig and shiner or casting a smaller size husky jerk right up on top of the breaks. As you are well aware the lake has a ton of structure. I will take the slower tapered break over the "cliffs" anyday, if you find weeds or rocks on these your in the right spot. Morning depths for us will be 2-10' and as the day goes on we will switch to jig and shiner or lindy and shiner and head out to 10-30' looking for fish. I won't fish any live bait out there on opener unless it's some species of shiner. Last year we parked on school of decent fish in 36' while our buddies were drilling them in 10' so you never know. For the evening bite we have a few pet spots that we anchor on with lighted slip bobbers, shiners, and a grip of beers!! Usually is good time and we get enough action/size to keep the boys happy. Good luck!

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TrophyEyes

My family has a cabin on the lake and everyone says shiners, but I have never caught a walleye on a shiner on this lake and I have no confidence in them. We killed the walleyes 2 weeks after opener on a bobber set up with a small jigs and medium leechs. I wonder if that may work as well. I guess we are going to try a bunch of methods until something works.

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anchor man

I'll be on Whitefish this opener. Even though the chain is tough on opener, I'm guessing the techniques described above by B420 will also provide some results out there. I still haven't figured out the ultimate opener secret for WF. I took Monday off so maybe a trip to Pelican will be in order in WF doesn't produce.

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Hopper

Im heading up to Red Lake. We fished there last year and it was awesome. There are about 15 in our group. We ate fish every night. The weather wasn't the best, but you always make it work on opener. There were not that many boats.

We use jig/minnow combo( fatheads and crappie minnoes). We fish the 1st 3-5ft break and hammer time. We stay at Westwind, they are easy going, willing to accomodate and I recommend them to anyone. We had a positive expierence.

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jnorm1984

Definatly gonna be on Mille Lacs. It will be a zoo, but I think it will be the place to be. Dont want to miss the chance at the fish of a lifetime!!!! laugh.gif

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jmiller55

I am wondering about Lake Ponto and Ada, Fished opener last year there. Both were ok at best, weather wasn't even close. Spinners, Jigs, Rapalas Live bait soft plastics what are good combonations for the early season walleyes in the area. Look forward to Brainerd area every year. No better place on Earth as far as I am concerned

Thanks

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weeds

A little help. I am going to Gull for opener and normally don't fish it until summer. I usually use the standard live bait rig with a red tail. I'm planning on jigging. Should I stick with the red tail? How shallow is too shallow?

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Sportland_Bait

Hi weeds, Usually in the early season a spot-tail shiner is the best minnow option on our lakes around here. With cold water the walleyes are still a bit lethargic and a redtail can be a little too active for the walleyes. A shiner is not as active and is one of their natural forage baits. Once the water warms in summer and fall it will be hard to top a redtail.

We catch walleyes on Gull very shallow at times. Sometimes right up in 3-4 feet of water. When fishing shallow like that I'll usually pitch jigs and minnows or throw out a bobber to specific targets like new weedgrowth. Longlining light jigs and minnows is another presentation for the shallow fish. On opening weekend some guys will catch fish as shallow as a couple of feet all the way out to 50 feet. They can be anywhere early. Good luck and feel free to stop by and say hi. We'll be open all weekend for the big rush.

Jason Erlandson

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weeds

Thank much. We'll be sure to stop in.

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daddyducker

Quote:

A little help. I am going to Gull for opener and normally don't fish it until summer. I usually use the standard live bait rig with a red tail. I'm planning on jigging. Should I stick with the red tail? How shallow is too shallow?


No such thing as too shallow. I would say around 9 ft during the day...the water is still awful chilly on the big pond.

Water levels are still down across the area if others are wondering. Been putting docks in, and would say that Gull is the coldest of them all.

As far as Gull, go shallow, 4-9 ft at night in the sand and rock, and the weeds during the day.

Jigging always produces. Shiners and leeches are my favorites when it comes to rigs, and nothing like running shad raps along shallow rock and sand at night.

Caught alot of big eyes around opener that way.

Good Luck!!

PS. -You don't have to go where the structure is either.

This time of year you'd be suprised where you find fish.

I have caught them in the most unlikely spots imaginable.

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weeds

Much appreciated DaddyD. Lots to go on. 1.5 mph a slow enough speed for the shad raps? Thanks for helpin' out the uninitiated.

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daddyducker

Keep them shads slow yes! Change up speed though.

Don't make it into a pattern.

Keep them slow enough to stay moving, but those fish aren't going to be active enough to hit a fast moving anything, unless you snag it in the corner of the mouth.

Hold on though...those pike will hit it everytime you forget to pay attention... smirk.gif

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