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Borch
On 4/24/2020 at 7:23 AM, PeachyHans said:

Pike were biting strong at the st cloud dam yesterday. My girlfriend caught her first fish! We were trying for catfish but the northerns went after everything.

@PeachyHans Another good spot locally to shore fish for cats is Lion's park in Cold Spring.   They have a fishing pier but we used to just throw out a crawler or leech with a hook and weight as we picniced sitting on shore there and caught plenty of catfish.  Some other fish often bite as well,(panfish, walleye, carp, etc).  If they aren't going there head over to the bridge on main street.  The shoreline edge on the west side of the river upstream from the bridge holds cats, walleyes and other game fish.

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Fished this Morning on a area lake on the Horseshoe chain and it was a crappy kind of Day. 😁 Got out before daybreak to get setup to be in position as I found this pod aka school of fish couple days a

Had a few free hours this bright and cold afternoon. Decided to hit one of those comunity type lakes where you know the fish aren't real big, but they will be where they should be. After scouting

Back to the same lake I fished Monday hoping that the descent breeze would make the fish more willing to bite.  Found the fish right away but could not figure out how to catch them.  After trying abou

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Tom Sawyer
12 hours ago, Rick G said:

 

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WOW, those are some goliath gills 

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  • 4 weeks later...
DonkeyHodey

Fishing a few times (tues-thurs) in a few little lakes just North of St. Cloud.

Water temp:  ~63-66 in the shallows, 60 in the main body.  Cabbage weed starting to grow ~1-2 feet in the warmer bays.  Water is ~10 degrees warmer than this time last year and vegetation ~1-2 weeks ahead.

We were Fishing with pink tube jigs or pink/white flu flus and/or bits of nightcrawler under a bobber.

Found crappies and sunnies in 1-6 feet of water.--sunnies were sitting or suspending shallow and crappies were consistently a foot deeper (sight fishing: the sunnies were suspending, the crappies hugging the bottom).  Bite was hit or miss.  Morning bite was surprisingly poor--mid afternoon bite (2 PM) was better than morning... 7-830 PM was the HOT time--845 bite just shut off like a switch!

Lots of little bass in the shallows and had one big bass on... (unfortunately, lightweight crappie line doesn't hold up well with a bass in the bulrushes...  C'est la vie.)

 

I suspect over Memorial day you can pretty much pick any species to target and potentially have a great bite!  Got lots of plans to wet some lines this weekend (but the forecast sounds like it might be more than my line that gets wet.)

 

(Kids were with Gma, so I'm sorry I don't have pics--this was just me and the wife having some quality fishing time...  This weekend, though, kids will be back so I hope to update you with some good pics)

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Not much going on around here for a while.   

 

I tried the chain this weekend between projects at the cabin.  Mainly fished the main drop on Horseshoe and a sunken island.  Jig and minnow was all that was needed.  Had to weed through the bazillion rock bass, but there were some eyes in the school as well.  I seemed to find most fish around the 16-20' area.  Definitely, the evening bite was much better than morning/afternoon...likely because of the clear water.  Was temp was 56-57*. 

 

Some cigars as well, but most eyes were 14-17".   

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Hit the chain again on Friday, but my weekend of fishing was cut short due to a sewer issue at the cabin.  

 

Anyways, I did fish Friday, water temp was basically the same, 57.  And I found the same success as last week.  

 

Caught a load of rock bass, 3 keeper eyes(which I released because I thought I would be fishing all weekend) and a smallie.  

 

I did have one large fish on, but it unbuttoned it's self.  I think it was a pike, because of the hit, but then I felt some solid head throbs and a short run.  So, who knows.  

 

I'm going to give it a break for a few days and try another body of water this weekend.  

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i was on a lake by hawick/new london last thursday. had my camera along........nice walleyes, bass and sunfish. all had lockjaw!!!!!!!👎🤔

 

fished big lake by richmond and got a few sunfish for the pan!!!!!!!!!

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Anyone been on the Chain or Big Birch within the past 3-4 days?  Just curious what the water temps are hovering around.  

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The Chemist

The last couple of months were great out on the lake. Smallies and northerns and mix in some large mouths and eyes. Fishing in 2-5fr of water.

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nice looking fish!!!!!!!!👍

 

join he hook-n- hospital group. the last 2 years 3 people i know did that, one of them me. our hospital happens to be deer river............they have a wall of hooks they've removed in the past. when i went i was patient #4 for the day with a hook!!!

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looks like there will be a change in sunfish limits effective march 1. article in todays st cloud times said there looking to reduce the sunfish limit on 9 area lakes. those lakes happen to make up the horseshoe chain system. looks like the new limit will go from 20 to 10.

 

now this is just my opinion but i didnt hear any issues with the panfish population  until a few years after they introduced the catfish to that system.

 

either way i'm ok with the change! 

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I don't fish that series of lakes but I have also heard that the introduction of the catfish years ago has played a significant role in reducing the population of panfish, especially bluegills.  I know bass anglers that fish out there regularly using artificial moving lures that still catch catfish.  That tells me they are aggressive and hungry.

 

I believe muskies were also introduced but muskies have not been proven to have a measurable impact on panfish populations, except for maybe perch.  There's simply not enough of them and stomach content studies have shown they prefer a diet of suckers, ciscoes (when present), small pike, and perch.  Would they eat a bluegill given the chance?  Of course.  But they do not seek them out as primary prey.

 

Another likely factor is angler over harvest.  Panfish populations get hammered almost year round now.

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As much as I would like to blame the catfish or other species of hurting the panfish population, the number one factor I believe is over harvest from fishing. There are people that fish 4 or more days a week and give fish away to others that don’t fish.  Somehow they just can’t bring themselves to catch and release which I do not understand.  I love fishing and I love the taste of fish but no way my I cleaning fish every time I go out. Hopefully we can continue to educate people on the benefits of catch and release instead of keeping so many. It sucks to go down to 10 or 5 for a limit, but if it helps us down the road I will live with it.  The lake my in-laws have a cabin on has been 5 sunfish for many years now and  it has helped. It just takes a while.

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16 hours ago, Dash 1 said:

I love fishing and I love the taste of fish but no way my I cleaning fish every time I go out. Hopefully we can continue to educate people on the benefits of catch and release instead of keeping so many.

 

Lowering the bag limit or instituting a restrictive harvest size will only so far too.  We both know that there isn't enough enforcement out there already.  What its going to have to take is a complete culture shift from mostly harvest to mostly catch and release.  It has caught on in the world of bass and muskie fishing for years now and their populations have responded with an abundance of thriving populations and trophy caliber fish.

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  • Official Fishing Report Team - MN
IceHawk
On 11/20/2020 at 10:09 AM, Coleman said:

Anyone been on the chain recently?  I think I'll get on it one last time tomorrow, and also map a few new ice spots.  

 

On the blue gill comments, I personally think lower the bag limit will help.  There are way too many people keeping every darn thing they catch.  One is my neighbor.  Guy will sit on his dock almost everyday and catch his limit in about 35-40 minutes,  and keep every fish he catches.  

 

But, on the other hand, it's in my opinion that the fishing on the chain is the best it's been in years. I can easily go out and catch my limit of 8-9" gills practically every day in the summer.  Bass are plentiful in just about every bay.  And even the walleye population which can be tough is coming back.  I can't even begin to count how many YOY walleyes I've caught over the last few years.  Hell, I think even the pike population, which has never been great, but was pathetic 10 years ago, is now getting back to being decent.  I've personally been on the last since my parent's had a camper at Walt's in 1984, then bought a cabin in 1988.  Catfish has always been present since I can remember, and was just ridiculous 7-8 years ago.  I think even the cat population is in a good spot.  I don't catch near as many crappie fishing, and what I do catch is very good in size.  You couldn't keep 15-18" fish on your baits, now I regularly catch 25-30" fish.  Hell, I think it's a lot of fun finding cats on the steep breaks in the spring, jig fishing them, and pulling out a 6-7lbs fish, especially when the walleye just aren't rolling yet.    

 

Basically all I'm saying is, there needs to be more people that just go fishing.  And don't have to keep their limit, or fish until they get their limit.  2 walleyes will produce a good meal, hell 10-12 gills can feed a family of 4.  But, I doubt that will happen for some time.  I think the younger generation is the generation that fishes to fish, and doesn't always keep their limit.  And I mean no disrespect, but I see a lot of old timers in the fish houses or on their docks keeping all these limits.  And, that was just how it was 40 years ago, so I can understand it.  

Coleman couldn't agree more!! One of the most spot on posts I've seen on the chain. I've fished it hard for for over 40 years and it is in the best shape I've ever seen. The fishing is outstanding out there. Quality fish all the way around. And to keep it that way something had to be done! The days of filling freezers and knifeing all 9 inch plus gills need to be over.  I will say from experiance  that adding the catfish and muskies hasn't been the problem its angling pressure and overharvest.   Look at the amount of boats out on chain during the fall fishing panfish for example.  The whole chain is notorious for giving out quality sunfish in AUG-Sept. Some of The restrictions were well needed. It's not uncommon to see over 20 boats on Becker alone on every given day on the weekend. And some are the same boats day after day. They aren't all catch and release we all know that🙁

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56 minutes ago, IceHawk said:

Coleman couldn't agree more!! One of the most spot on posts I've seen on the chain. I've fished it hard for for over 40 years and it is in the best shape I've ever seen. The fishing is outstanding out there. Quality fish all the way around. And to keep it that way something had to be done! The days of filling freezers and knifeing all 9 inch plus gills need to be over.  I will say from experiance  that adding the catfish and muskies hasn't been the problem its angling pressure and overharvest.   Look at the amount of boats out on chain during the fall fishing panfish for example.  The whole chain is notorious for giving out quality sunfish in AUG-Sept. Some of The restrictions were well needed. It's not uncommon to see over 20 boats on Becker alone on every given day on the weekend. And some are the same boats day after day. They aren't all catch and release we all know that🙁

hey stranger.........nice to see you around. by the way if you always see a truck following you..........it aint me!!!!!!!😆 but i am retired now, so........... 

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  • Official Fishing Report Team - MN
IceHawk

Thanks Glen been busy fishing and hunting been a banner year for me in the outdoors for sure !!!  Had a phenomenal summer, fall walleye fishing, got a Buck and Doe gun season now my focus is chasing roosters as much as possible until good ice! Might be my last year in the field for my old lab as she is 13 still hunting hard but the joints arthritis are catching up to her. Plus side is my new pup 1 1/2 is really coming along great she's going to b a good one! Your more than welcome to follow me but I will warn you first you have to figure out what I'm driving. Bought a new 2020 pickup this spring with a off road  package now  you have to figure out the color and brand 😀🤣 Seriously anytime your more than welcome to join me just holler Hope retirement is treating you right. 

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Been good so far 👍 I will take you up on your offer some time.

 

Where did you get your young lab?? I may be in the market for one this spring as long as I don't need to take a second mortgage on the house.🥴

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  • Official Fishing Report Team - MN
IceHawk
2 hours ago, smurfy said:

Been good so far 👍 I will take you up on your offer some time.

 

Where did you get your young lab?? I may be in the market for one this spring as long as I don't need to take a second mortgage on the house.🥴

My older yellow Zoe came out of Pete Fischers Rex former owner of Fischer Kennels now with Dogtra and my newest black one Otter is from Mike Feldhege of Richmond AKA (Fishing) his male Drake and a cousins female Avery from a Grove city kennel. Both excellent dogs! both were fairly reasonable I train all my dogs myself done a few already takes a ton of time and paitence  but the rewards are worth it! My dogs are in the house with me and spend time with me in the boat and pretty much are with me all the time they are my second kids 😀  I feel this connection is what truely makes a good dog.  

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Thanks I know fishing, graduated with my brother, I graduated with his sister Patty. I miss chasing roosters.

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15 hours ago, IceHawk said:

female Avery from a Grove city kennel

 

Smith Farms Labradors?  My 8 year old British yellow lab is from that breeder in Grove City.

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Wanderer
19 hours ago, IceHawk said:

Thanks Glen been busy fishing and hunting been a banner year for me in the outdoors for sure !!!  Had a phenomenal summer, fall walleye fishing, got a Buck and Doe gun season now my focus is chasing roosters as much as possible until good ice! Might be my last year in the field for my old lab as she is 13 still hunting hard but the joints arthritis are catching up to her. Plus side is my new pup 1 1/2 is really coming along great she's going to b a good one! Your more than welcome to follow me but I will warn you first you have to figure out what I'm driving. Bought a new 2020 pickup this spring with a off road  package now  you have to figure out the color and brand 😀🤣 Seriously anytime your more than welcome to join me just holler Hope retirement is treating you right. 


Sounds like a fantastic fall!!

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Just as a note, I got on the chain Saturday around noon.  Main lakes had a skim of ice, 1/2", shallow bodies(East lake) look like the ice was actually walkable, please don't take my word for that though.  

 

Anyways, water temps were 34*.  I didn't fish much at all, just broke up enough ice to get some new data for mapping.  I did mark quiet a few fish, which is a plus.  

 

On another note, has anyone else noticed the large group(15-20) of beds on Horseshoe just north of the meth hole, about 8-9FOW?  I noticed these this spring, and they're still there.  Thought it was kind of interesting they'd still be there even after all the boat traffic this year.  

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  • Official Fishing Report Team - MN
IceHawk
6 hours ago, gimruis said:

 

Smith Farms Labradors?  My 8 year old British yellow lab is from that breeder in Grove City.

Eboni labrador retrievers was the kennel. Heard nothing but good things about smith farm labradors

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  • Official Fishing Report Team - MN
IceHawk

Coleman were they panfish beds? Many times they will still be there the following year if not washed away. 

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1 hour ago, IceHawk said:

Coleman were they panfish beds? Many times they will still be there the following year if not washed away. 

I'm assuming they were panfish beds.  Just seems like such a random spot.  Wish I had an underwater camera with me, I would have checked them out when I first saw them.  

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