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2020 Crane Lake - Lake Kabetogama-Namakan Lake Fishing Reports


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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

What a weekend weather-wise, 13 below mid-week rebounding to upper 40’s on the weekend.

Sever cold seems to be gone for awhile, hopefully for the season. Long range looking much better, arctic air stay away.

Anglers on Kabetogama having a tough go of it for crappies(regular season closed till May 10th). Lots of soft snow and slush pockets impeding travel.

Namakan, border-water lake, very tough travel at this time due to soft surface and slush.

Crappie bite still slow or non-existent this past week, should see some improvement between now and end of month.

Still optimistic about ice out, only twice in the last 25 years has ice not been out opening day. This week’s weather is encouraging. I am thinking ice out first week of May.

Snowmobiling still looking decent on lake trails and land trails as of weekend, they are still grooming.

Nice to see deer moving around now.

See you Soon,

Phil & Ellen Hart

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Spot on Satchmo...biggest variable is the changing weather this time of year.  Cold nights, warm days change those water temps enough to push bait fish around.  Wind and consistent wind in the same di

Mark,     That was us!  We cruised up to the top of the bay and parked at the Leach Bay HB site. Can't tell you what a thrill it was to finally get on these bodies of water!  We were up on Namakan t

Hey dan, hope your trip was good....we had 4 seasons in 5 days ! Think we saw you motor by in the houseboat through grassy towing a few boats behind. Must have been you...no one else except one boat

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Thanks for the detailed reports, Rick. I am coming up in 10 days, have you heard any reports for Kab on Crappies, Perch or even Tulibee?

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  • 1 month later...

hello fellow Crane/Kab/Sand Point Sportsman, I have been fishing in Sand Point the last 6yrs mid summer June July and Aug. Each month brings new challenges...we enjoy northern pike fishing and do ok...not great lots of small ones. Like to change it up and go for big...anyone care to share strategies...where and what. thanks mark

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I've fished Namakan but never Sand Point. I troll 30-50 foot flats with deep diving crankbaits and have gotten some pike up to 30", plus walleyes. The Rapala Deep Tail Dancer and similar lures can get you down to 30' plus on 10/4 Fireline.

There's a 40-foot flat in Portage bay of Sand Point that I'd suggest checking out. Good Luck.

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Barbelboy

Use large crank baits. Find main lake points or structure that drop off into deep water. Troll off or around the points.

It's a low productivity, but the quality can be there. The biggest I've seen caught this way was 48".

We had a cabin in Grassy Bay for 23 years before the park took it.

Also look for aspens close to the shore, usually an indicator of weeds because of a sandy bottom. There will be small weed beds that are not usually targeted by anybody else. You'd be surprised what you can catch jumping from little spot to little spot.

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thanks I appreciate the info we are staying on sandpoint this year at s-10 king pin....gonna hit swansons bay

Mark

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Barbelboy

s-10 kingpin. As you sit at the campsite look at the island in the bay. That was our island. We built the dock that the park left there. It's a beautiful bay. As a kid we used to spend a month or more at a time up there. It was a heck of a way to spend summers.

I'll shoot you an email.

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imhatz

I know exactly the cabin...we fished the sand bar every opener...great fishing there...I remember the cabin well we always remarked on how lucky you were.

My father in law went to sand point over 50 years and created the sire in the sixties now know as s-23. I have been going since the 80's. It would be great to share email [email protected]

Mark

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  • 2 weeks later...

That is a great spot. We have done a shore lunch on your island the last two summers. My 6 year old son fell off the dock last year. Lol. On the South end of the island opposite the dock there is a small wall along the rock shoreline. We have always been curious what that was part of?

We stay on Crane for a week in June every year but do most of our fishing on Sand Point.

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Barbelboy

If you look there are several large iron hooks or circles attached to the rock. They were used for log rafts during the logging eras. The wall was there when we acquired the place, we assumed the previous owner put it there, but that may not be the case.

In june you can bobber fish off the rock point there in the evening for walleyes. You probably noticed evidence of some large bonfires there too. We had a nice annual 4th of july tradition.

Also, the blue berry picking can be biblical on that island around the 4th of july.

Yes, the sand bar around opener is awesome. Also, later in the summer the weedbed along the north part of the bay (north past the campsite) can be very good for walleyes if rapalas are trolled in the evening.

I'd love to share stories, I just haven't had much time on the web lately.

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Basswood

Mark. My wife & I have been fishing Crane Lake for the last 8 yrs. Grassy Bay is a great place to fish. Work the weed lines in the back end of Grassy Bay for walleye & pike. We have picked up some nice fish from time to time. We work Little Joe,s & leeches. Crank baits, spoons for pike. We do not do much bass fishing. Marker 22 is a good spot for walleye also. The sand bar is also good for some fish. We picked up a cheap map at the Orr visitor center; it shows spots where to go. It sure helped out. We will be up there in June the week of the 13th. We can not wait.

Dave

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Basswood

That island is a great place to take a break from fishing. My wife & I eat lunch there when we are up there in June. Thank you for passing on some of your stories. We have wondered about that wall you talked about. I do not know if you know or not. The big house on Ingersoll island fell down over the winter. Must have had two much snow on it this winter. Seen some photos on Sandpoint Lodge face book page.

Dave

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speedbump

First of all, this is a really neat posting. Great memories and stories which is a large part of what makes this site so neat. Each year I head up to Sand Point for a couple of days to stay at my buddies cabin. This year we are going up much earlier than normal, June 2-4. I am assuming that the water temps are still really cold. I am looking for some expert advice on what depth to look for some eater walleye that time of the year. Not looking for any secret spots, only some tips on depth and presentation. I have done some fishing in Grassy Bay, but usually on the humps. Thanks in advance for any tips.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hey Speedbump, thanks for the comment about the post. This has been a good way for us all to reflect on the great times had and to come on SandPoint. How did your recent trip turn out ? We are now preparing to have our pre-planning meeting for our trip the end of July. We have reserved Kingpin and it will be our first time to that specific site...I am so looking forward to the new views and ability to fish around the island and sand bar at night.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just checking in with the folks who have been on Crane, Kab, and Sand Point the past weeks. I hope has been well for yo with all the rain. I hear that waters are very high and some localized flooding. I hope that you all were able to enjoy the time there and your camp didn't flood out. How are the water temps on Crane/Sand Point and how about black flies and mosquitoes ? thanks..tight lines

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Northlander

Bugs werent bad. Walleyes were biting on minnows mostly and a few leeches. Only problem we had was the smaller keeper fish didnt want to play much but the slots were fun to play around with. Stayed at Vayaguer Park Lodge and cant say enough good things about Casey and his crew.

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Nice Eye SledNeck... Saturday cant get here fast enough... You using any spinners by chance?

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Bummed out....my reservation for Kingpin was cancelled because of high water...was planning for 7/28 - 8/4. site closed until 8/1. Had to scramble today to get new site....well we are going back to browns again this year. but 8/1-8/6......try again next year for Kingpin....The good news is Lori at Handberg Marine was able to accommodate me for the boat ..whew. Thanks to all adding to the post..gonna be fishing grassy and browns.

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Hey all, thanks to all for adding comments a real cool exchange going ! Well I got my reservation cancellation scheduled for the last week of July on kingpin what a bummer. The campsites with docks are flooded and closed the entire month of July. After I came down from the hitting the roof I scrambled and worked out details fro the next week. Although not on kingpin site that is reserved through August. Thanks to Lori at Handberg Marine I was able to change my boat reservation...We are now reserved for Browns (our 4th year there.) I guess we will be fishing grassy, browns, and staege. Sure would like to hear water temps and water level conditions...thanks all

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  • 2 weeks later...

well guys heading up to SandPoint in less than 2 weeks...sort of disappointed we were unable to work out the details to continue going to king Pin after the high water cancellations. So we are back to Browns...it will be great any way..

this year we are looking for big Pike !! and CPR always. Looking for your tips guys....troll or cast... This post has been inactive for a while....Anyone up there able to give me water temps..Thanks and tight lines

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fish junkie

Heading up Aug 2nd for first trip to Kab. Excitement is growing.

I like to tie my own leaders for lindy and spinner rigging. I have many tied and also will have the accessories to tie more while I am there. Does there seem to be any certain colors(blades and jigs) that produce more? Also do you guys have better luck with certain blade sizes or styles?

Does anybody use in-line floats or floating jig heads on their spinner rigs?

Thanks in advance for any info..

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Heading up Thursday night 7/31...Any info guys on water temp..I appreciate everyones feedback on this site the past several months. We will be staying in Browns and fishing all over...plan a trip to swansons for Pike and fish around the island by kingpin...evenings for walleye...heading to staege just because it is cool. Any help guys the main target this year is CPR Northern Pike...thanks again....we will have a lunch on the island by kingpin and think about your time there barbelboy

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Water temp was around 75.2-75.6 most of the places on Crane and Sand Point. Marked tons of fish, but had a hard time getting much to bite. Fished mostly for walleyes and smallies, but a few pike as well. Everything we caught was on the small side. Maybe all of the fronts going through made the fishing tough, but most people we talked to weren't doing well. What we did catch was mostly with minnows and bare hook, either as a live bait rig or with a slip bobber.

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Dan Erikson

Gentlemen,

Great to finally find a forum that includes information that includes Crane, Sand Point and Namakan lake info. Our crew has booked a house boat with Voyagaire Houseboats to depart on 5/14/15. Already have the fingers and toes cross and praying for an early ice out. Might be close??? We have house boated on the Canadian side of both Rainy Lake and Lake of the Woods but never this early in the season. Decided to start keeping the cash back here in the states so Voyagaire here we come! Currently we do most of our fishing on Castle Rock Lake and Lake Petenwell in central WI. These are the 2nd and 4th largest bodies of water in our state. Being flowages they are merely dammed up sections of the Wi River. Our method of choice while fishing here are planer boards with #5-#7 Shad Raps, Hot-n-Tots and Flicker Shads in targeted depths of 3-10’ of water. In the spring when the Walleyes spawn it is very typical for the eyes to head for the river channels (Up Stream). Don’t bother fishing the main lake areas because nothings there. I’ve been studying the posts from May on here and it’s looking like we may have to reset our style of fishing if we want a few Walleyes for shore lunch! Here in Wi we can fish with 3 lines which really can keep you busy on a good day. I see MN is a 1 line per person state but with 4 persons in the boat we could easily troll with 4 lines plenty far out from the boat to surprise any fish we chase out from under us. The WI river is stained water so Eyes can be active all day.

From what I’m seeing here we better prepare to troll down to 20’ if we want to continue this style of fishing on these lakes. Looking for any suggestions as far as best places to park the house boat, best spring tactics for Eyes and any other info that would be helpfull to a bunch of rookies!

We’ve driven by the Crane Lake and Kabetogama signs plenty of times! Can’t wait for that right turn instead of the border crossing!

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