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MalawiMD

Lake Pepin safe?

10 posts in this topic

I am fairly new to Rochester. I heard Lake Pepin is a good sailing area then I saw it is also a good fishing area too. I would like to take my family out sailing and fishing. However, I saw that a family died on the water recently and if freeked me out a bit.

Is it safe for a novice sailer? Also, I have an old 14' aluminum boat with a small trolling motor. It isn't the most sturdy boat. Is Lake Pepin safe for a small boat, or is the winds/current too strong?

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I believe the family you are referring to is the family that got caught in the dam this last weekend. They were fishing on a 12' fishing boat and their motor wouldn't start. Dam currents are much greater than anything that is around Lake Pepin.

The lake does have its rough days but even then its not nearly as dangerous as the dam is everyday. The bay in Lake City is usually calmer than the rest of the lake. Unless the lake is like glass you may want to invest in a little larger motor just because the lake is large and in the event the weather changes you would want to be able to get off the water a little quicker than a trolling motor would allow.

I've spent time on 14' boats and larger boats on pepin. I've never actually sailed but i know many who have. In fact there are people who wind sail which is nothing more than a surfboard with a sail.

If the weather is windy and you still want to get some good fishing in you could always go to the backwaters in Wabasha. Its only an extra 15 min and from what the guys on the board here say it can be pretty fun fishing.

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Lake Pepin is as safe as you are. If you chose to go out in a small craft on a day when the waves are 3 to 4 feet, you are the one putting yourself in danger. A little common sense goes a long way on Pepin or any other big body of water. You need to ask yourself if there is a fish in the water worth dying for!

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MalawiMD,

First off, Welcome to Fishing Minnesota. Like yourself I also have an old 14' fishing boat. I have a 15 horsepower motor along with the trolling motor. Like others said weather/winds will often dictate what and where you can go on Pepin. If the winds aren't bad you will be ok out there. I've had mine on Pepin with no problems. Weekends during the summer months though you will have a lot of pleasure boaters out and often times that can be worse than wind.

Are you specifically looking for walleye/sauger action? If not, the backwaters between Wabasha and Nelson, WI would be great to explore with that set up. A lot of good bass, pike, and panfish action available. There is also Chesterwoods and Zumbro closer to Rochester and plenty of lakes going West over by Faribault that offer great fishing. If your looking for fishing ideas browse around on the site and ask questions. You could also pick up Sportmen's Connection Southern Minnesota Lakes guide. These books are a very good resource and can be found at Gander Mountain.

Andy

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What city do you live in? Do you have an email address? If so, I can send you some info.

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I thought I was the only one with an old fishing boat. I have an 18 footer, (1971) it’s almost as old as I am. 9.9 HP motor. It floats and catches fish so I guess that’s all that matters.

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Quote:

What city do you live in? Do you have an email address? If so, I can send you some info.


I too am new to Lake Pepin and the river in general. I would like to give it a try but I am a little intimidated byt the whole thing. Any information on Lake Pepin and north to Hastings would be greatly appreciated. I am mainly interested in walleye/sauger but would like to try catfish as well. My e-mail is bradjacobson AT charter (Contact Us Please) net. Thanks in advance.

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It makes it a bit easier when you realize you can eliminate 90% of the water because pretty much all the fishing is done on the channel edge or on top of it. Most of the fishing is done within 50-75 yards of shore if not 20 or 30 yards and at times almost all of it can be productive. Thats why trolling and covering ground can be so effective.

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Thanks for the responses everyone. I went up to Lake Pepin two weeks ago. It was pretty windy, so I didn't get out on the lake much. I mostly was in my small sailboat. I did a little shore fishing, but I didn't have any luck. I plan on going up this weekend though and trying to catch some walleye!

Aaron

Aaron

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Slayer, I would love some info/advice. My email is MalawiMD at charter.net

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