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St. Croix Ice wrap


Turk

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As the St. Croix ice season has come to a close, I'm wondering if any of you have come to any conclusions as to patterns that you observed over the ice season?

Also this year more and more anglers are fishing above the high lines and getting closer and closer to Stillwater... Any of you guys in that crowd?

In general what worked, what didn't, best time of day, best time of year, etc.

Sorry I don't have much to add to this particular post as my season was too limited with openwater guiding that I do on the Mississippi. Don't worry though, I'll have stuff soon enough, most of you guys know I hammer the St. Croix come opener.

Turk

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The only real pattern I saw was the lack of a pattern. Presentations needed to be switched up all the time. Jig colors varried from minute to minute. Even bait choices varried wildly. Before this year I'd never even heard of anyone catching crappies on anything but minnows. This season at times not only did waxies/eurolarvae work better but even untipped plastics were often the bait of choice.

I did fish north of the highlines a couple times this year and it seemed, at least to me, that the numbers were better up there, but mostly the size was better farther south.

IMO people were spread out much more than in years past because of the sporadic bite. Everyone was on the hunt for active fish. Hopefully most learned that you don't need to follow the groups to catch fish.

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Turk i would agree a lot with Donbo that there was not a lot of pattern to the winter bite. I generally fish away from the crowds.. My best luck seemed to be a minnow with a something gold with very little movement. I did catch some jigging the minnow, but a great majority was on a dead stick...

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The only pattern I saw was most everything for me came off the bottom. Lots of shad early in the season then later they were gone. Tried fishing in the suspended markings on the graph but no bites, chalked them off as gizzards.

Walleyes were not where they were in past years. Never got into a good bite on them and the few I got were small.

I didn't even catch a sturgeon, I did have a fish strip my line with no chance of stopping it. Not that I targeted sturgeon but the areas I fish for walleye not uncommon to pull one out frequently in years past.

I did not get into the cat bite either later in the year.

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