Hello. This is a post for those interested in the Bayport area.
Many anglers are waiting for the river to freeze to get after the big river crappie.
Right now the Bayport pool is skim iced over.
The Bayport area of the St. Croix River is the best and safest place on the river for crappie fishing.
The Crappie bite can be very good, but as a whole not the most consistent. Normally the morning bite is be the best though, from a half hour after sun up till 8:30, with an ok bite from 3:00 till sun down.
Techniques that catch crappies:
Crappie minnow and bobber on a #6 hook or small jig. Space out your lines in terms of depth above bottom as these crappies suspend up to 18 feet of the bottom, though four to ten feet above bottom is more common than 18’.
Smaller crappie minnows work better than the larger ones for numbers of caught crappies; minnow heads can be productive on jigs (for anglers actively jigging) instead of a whole minnow when the bite is slow.
Crappies always roam the basin; this soft fluffy bottom covers the majority of the Bayport pool, and the majority of the basin is 33 to 36 fow. Also the shallower basin (the north part of the pool) in 26 to 30 feet can also be productive. Without a doubt these crappie roam and a mobile angler does better.
Walleye and sauger catches remain inconsistent traditionally, and a few being taken constitutes a good day (15” minimum size for walleye), Jigging Rap’s are a best bet to tangle with river walleyes and saug dogs (glow green tiger, clown, and rainbow trout colors in sizes W3, W5, and W7) either tipped with a minnow head or plain.
White bass are a bonus and very good out of the ice-cold water the top loin is white meat and good eating. Avoid the meat.
Trucks will eventually drive on the ice, but it is a river folks!
Please be aware that there is open water on the river. Because of currents, I would not drive within a mile of the train bridge (swing bridge) near Hudson or the New Stillwater bridge. The NSP plant also has a warm water discharge. The Malileau Dam also flows into the Bayport pool. Learn the river in the day and stay on the beaten path until you are experienced enough.
Keep Catchin’ Turk
So the weeks betwixt point and click and smoke pole deer hunting always have my ire up to get that last Musky Missile into my hands. Gotta scrub that slime into my glove until next year. Going to give the Mississippi below Falls a try here in a few hours. Might find it frozen, might find a spot to get in. I'll bring my boat because I'm an optimist, but I'll bet the kayak is where i end up.
Wish me luck, otherwise I have a scheme on my mind for my favorite frozen central mn musky lake.
On the main basin... Ice is making progress and now covers Lake of the Woods. Satellite images from 11-17-18 show the majority of the lake locked up with various pockets of open water. A very welcomed sign, but way too early to be on the main lake. Some spearing for pike taking place on Bostic Bay. Spearers are often the first on the ice. Please use resort marked trails and exercise safety precautions as ice thickness is varied.
On the Rainy River... The Rainy River and Four Mile Bay is frozen over with various pockets of open water. Currently, higher than normal current. Areas of the river locked up earlier in the week.
Up at the NW Angle... The NW Angle is locked with ice. Higher than normal current. As always, neck down and other areas with current are iffy. Mainly airboat traffic between islands thus far. Work through resorts and stay on staked resort ice trails when ice fishing begins. Safety first. We are getting closer!