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Sportfish1850

Any area of the lake near the tall weeds with a pocket in those weeds, a sandy bottom nearby and shallow water 3ft or so should provide some potential area for sunnies. I'm seeing boats jammed with families sitting on the rushes and reeds in the major bays or the reeds and rushes near the bars. From the sounds of it they are having fun catching pannies.

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fishinbum

Would anybody happen to know the water temp of Osakis? I'm guessing it's still a little cold but should warm up very soon. Are the reeds/weeds growing yet?

Thanks,

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Would anybody happen to know the water temp of Osakis? I'm guessing it's still a little cold but should warm up very soon. Are the reeds/weeds growing yet?

Thanks,

A good question, and one I logged in to ask myself. grin

I've been yammering a lot on here about the importance of weed growth and the algae bloom on Osakis. I wasn't planning on being up there 'til June 21, but I have a wedding to attend in Mpls. this Saturday, and managed to turn that in to a reason to fish Osakis this Friday. cool

My experience for the first week of June on Osakis is that the pencil reeds in the shallow bays will be growing but not yet breaking the surface, the cabbage will be growing pretty well, and the deeper coontail will be just a foot or so high in the water out to about seventeen feet.

More importantly, the algae bloom will probably not happen for a few days yet...but I don't live on Osakis to check for myself, and my memory is not perfect, so hopefully someone can give us an eyewitness, up-to-date report.

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I have fished there the last two weekends. On Memorial weekend I had some of the best bass fishing I have ever had. I had my 12 year old nephew and another 16 year old with me. The 16 year old had never fished plastics. Both the kids caught fish and some of them up to 18 1/2 inches. We caught over 100 for the three days. Most of the time we only fished for a couple of hours at a time to boot.

I fished last Saturday and Sunday and it was much tougher. Caught a few bass but not much. Got blown of the lake Sunday afternoon. That evening we chased walleyes for a bit. Caught one on a SSR7 (and one nice northern) The walleye was caught in 4 1/2 foot of water as I got shallower than I intended (lucky for me).

The water temps are in the low to mid 60's during the day in the shallow bays. On the main lake it was 60.

The water is still very clear (unless the wind stirs it up) There was no algae bloom.

Some of the pencil reeds are sticking up (probably 3 - 9 inches) but the whole beds were not up yet.

I spent more time bass fishing than chasing the walldogs so I can not be more helpful there. Certainly the boats fish there favorite spots regularly. I can see Moon Bar from my cabin and there are 15 to 20 boats slip bobbering every night. But I have no idea how well they did.

It sure was fun catching lots of nice bass with no other boats around while I watched the walleye guys pretty much sit in each others boats.

I did notice that some of the slip bobber guys where using leeches already. Not sure if they were catching any.

The water level has gone down quite a bit. Already had to lower the docks once and push the boat lift out. The water was real high early in the year but there has been little or no rain so far this spring.

Good Luck on Friday

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bigbucks

I think it was 63 degrees last night. Some of the pencils are up & some aren't. If you're on the edges of where they're up, sometimes that's the true edge sometimes you'll suddenly be in a bed of old ones. I would say the bloom has not started yet.

Went out to troll plugs with my son last night. It really was too calm for that in shallower water, but we didn't have much time & that was the plan, so we stuck with it. Not much to show, one smallie maybe 11" & a northern 2 lbs. or so.

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Sportfish1850

It sure was fun catching lots of nice bass with no other boats around while I watched the walleye guys pretty much sit in each others boats.

I did notice that some of the slip bobber guys where using leeches already. Not sure if they were catching any.

Second that. I don't understand the boat stacking mentality. I fish bass/northers during the day and have plenty of room to enjoy the action while over memorial day I counted 25+ boats all fishing 4 mile bar. At night I see boats stacked on the main bars (like 4 mile, half mile) all anchored slip bobbering. Instead I sit on any number of drop off locations from 12-18 feet of which there are miles and miles of that kind of structure close to outside weed lines and catch decent numbers of fish without all the congestion and noise of other boats. And by spreading out from the crowd I'm convinced I get more 15"+ fish in my catch as those larger fish are more likely to be spooked by the congestion of boats.

Yes leeches are definitely working on the slip bobbers right now.

Water temps at 61-63 depending on depth and waves.

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fishinbum

I couldn't agree more. The second you catch a fish, the boats are on you like flies. Sounds like the algae bloom is just a few degrees away. If I'm not mistaken, it blooms around 65-66.

The pencil reeds are right around the corner as well.

I've heard they are also getting walleyes out deep rigging. Not sure the bait of choice, I've heard mention of leeches as well. Good luck to those who are going out there.

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I couldn't agree more. The second you catch a fish, the boats are on you like flies.

Last June, I had a stalker on Osakis. A guy staying at Idlewilde with my party saw us doing really well on walleye, and started following us around. He had a bass boat, and I would see him cruising til he spotted me or one of the other boats in our party, and then he would make a bee-line right for us until he anchored maybe twenty feet away--I am not exaggerating. mad This happened three or four times. He missed the not-so-subtle comments we made to him--my brother asked him if he just wanted to climb in the boat with us--and he also missed the little things we were doing to catch a lot more fish than him. laugh

That was a rather extreme and annoying example, but I usually look at it this way: I would rather have people gather around me because I am catching fish than have a spot to myself and catch nothing.

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Finlander

I also had a boat follow me around after we boated some walleyes. I met him at The Head on the north east end of Osakis when I went to eat a burger and he asked me what we were using to catch all those walleyes, so I told him we were using Fat Raps and he told me he didn't have any of those.

Actually we were using #7 shad raps and trolling around 3mph!

That boat didn't catch a thing as we watched them the rest of the time because the area we were trolling is a small area. wink

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Sportfish1850

I've heard they are also getting walleyes out deep rigging.

I did some of this last year too with mixed success. Fishing in 35 to 45 feet of water just off some of the main bars. Almost every fish we caught was under 15" but the change in pressure basically killed them as they'd struggle to get back under the surface and several would die on the water or quickly get picked off by pelicans or cormorants. After seeing the impact of doing that we quickly stopped.

I read about venting but learned putting a hole in the fish's stomach would allow them to dive, but often just delays the death of the fish a few days, didn't really prevent it.

I found a number of online devices that offered other ideas. I guess the forum policy prevents putting a link even for information purposes on here and I got my wrist slapped for doing it so just do a web query for the deep water fish release aids SFD to see how I discovered a model I copied with my home made version.

Take a very large weight (3 or 4 oz) and a big hook (file off the barb) and join them with 24 inches of pretty heavy fishing line (I used 20 lb).

Take an old rod/reel (I use an old ice fishing kit), spooled with 100ft of 10lb+ line and tie an improved clinch knot at the bend of the hook. When you suspend the hook and weight from the rod/line, the hook point should point to the floor and the weigh should hang below it. I like to open the hook up a bit to make for a wider hook opening. Keep it on your boat for the next time you are deep fishing.

When you catch a deep water fish, and the air sack has pushed the stomach up in the mouth, you can push the barbless hook through the soft flesh in the lower jaw of the walleye (important....hook him inside out), and then drop the fish into the water with an open spool. The weight will force the fish to sink to the bottom. By returning the fish to the bottom scientists say this gives the fish the best chance to survive, better than venting his stomach. His insides quickly return to normal in the higher pressure he was used to. And it gets the fish down into the water in the correct orientation to keep water on the gills (belly down rather than floating on his side). Give the fish a couple of minutes like that. Then, close the bail, reel up the slack and gently "set the hook". Because you are pulling upwards from the bend of the inverted hook, assuming you connected him inside out, the hook will easily pull free of the jaw and you can reel up your weight fish free and give the fish a much better chance to survive.

It works pretty slick. Try it next time you are deep water fishing (30 feet or more) for walleyes on lakes with a restricted slot size and you know you'll have to return some fish to the water that may because of barotrauma not be able to survive a standard release.

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carpmanjake

Originally Posted By: fishinbum

I've heard they are also getting walleyes out deep rigging.

I did some of this last year too with mixed success. Fishing in 35 to 45 feet of water just off some of the main bars. Almost every fish we caught was under 15" but the change in pressure basically killed them as they'd struggle to get back under the surface and several would die on the water or quickly get picked off by pelicans or cormorants. After seeing the impact of doing that we quickly stopped.

I read about venting but learned putting a hole in the fish's stomach would allow them to dive, but often just delays the death of the fish a few days, didn't really prevent it.

[Note from admin, please read forum policy before posting again, thank you.]

Take a very large weight (3 or 4 oz) and a big hook (file off the barb) and join them with 24 inches of pretty heavy fishing line (I used 20 lb).

Take an old rod/reel (I use an old ice fishing kit), spooled with 100ft of 10lb+ line and tie an improved clinch knot at the bend of the hook. When you suspend the hook and weight from the rod/line, the hook point should point to the floor and the weigh should hang below it. I like to open the hook up a bit to make for a wider hook opening. Keep it on your boat for the next time you are deep fishing.

When you catch a deep water fish, and the air sack has pushed the stomach up in the mouth, you can push the barbless hook through the soft flesh in the lower jaw of the walleye (important....hook him inside out), and then drop the fish into the water with an open spool. The weight will force the fish to sink to the bottom. By returning the fish to the bottom scientists say this gives the fish the best chance to survive, better than venting his stomach. His insides quickly return to normal in the higher pressure he was used to. And it gets the fish down into the water in the correct orientation to keep water on the gills (belly down rather than floating on his side). Give the fish a couple of minutes like that. Then, close the bail, reel up the slack and gently "set the hook". Because you are pulling upwards from the bend of the inverted hook, assuming you connected him inside out, the hook will easily pull free of the jaw and you can reel up your weight fish free and give the fish a much better chance to survive.

It works pretty slick. Try it next time you are deep water fishing (30 feet or more) for walleyes on lakes with a restricted slot size and you know you'll have to return some fish to the water that may because of barotrauma not be able to survive a standard release.

thats a good idea! never thought of that

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Finlander

Let's be smart from the get'go! Don't fish deeper than 30'!

Try 27' max to be sure not to kill all those cigar size walleye's. And almost all those walleyes at that depth are under 15" which is under the slot, why bother! Do your self and everybody else a favor, leave those little cigar walleye's alone so they can turn into 16-17" eaters in a few years. frown

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Let's be smart from the get'go! Don't fish deeper than 30'!

Try 27' max to be sure not to kill all those cigar size walleye's. And almost all those walleyes at that depth are under 15" which is under the slot, why bother! Do your self and everybody else a favor, leave those little cigar walleye's alone so they can turn into 16-17" eaters in a few years. frown

Agreed. Before the 15" minimum went in to effect, people could sit out in thirty feet of water and pull up 10"-12" walleye all day, or until they got bored and kept their limit of cigars. The gulls and pelicans ate very well, too, as lots of those little deep-water walleye didn't make it.

The 15" minimum put a stop to most of the deep-water fishing. As Finlander points out, the larger walleye do not use the 30'+ water on Osakis in the summer--just the juveniles, and you cannot legally keep those sub-15" walleye.

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Sportfish1850

Yeah, I totally agree with you guys, I don't fish deep in Osakis once I learned what was down there at those 35 and 40 ft depths nor do I advocate people do it. Just the mention of deep rigging in an earlier post reminded me of it a couple years ago when I was first learning the lake and marked some fish at 40 feet but after a few fish I realized they were all 12" and moved on.

But on other lakes, especially lakes with other species or shield lakes, some deep fish ARE of decent size but you still may want to release the smaller ones you catch from those waters. It doesn't change the fact the device I described is worth keeping in your side storage compartment in your boat on ANY lake where you might mark fish deep and want to be able to catch a couple to see what type and size of fish you are marking and find if its table fare or throwback.

If you are on a lake where the deeper fish do run bigger or fishing a species like lake trout who often reside in the deepest coldest water on a lake then just up the size of the weight and line size to pull them back down quickly. It does work and keeps mortality much lower.

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fishinbum

As mentioned in earlier posts, fish that are of the legal size, 15' or above normally are less than 20 feet deep all year. It was even mentioned at the rules meeting for the Lions Club tourney not to fish in the deeper holes due to the length of fish. I think the more we can spread the word the more sub 15' fish we can save for us to enjoy in years to come.

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Chris_the_Cow

Any recent reports? I am thinking about coming up this weekend. What would be the best bet pannies or eye's?

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I fished Osakis Friday night and Saturday--just in time for the cold front to blow through. laugh

With the NW wind I was itching to get out on the main lake, but I have a small boat and motor. The chop at the city ramp looked a little rough for my 14-footer, so I was confined to the north end of the lake.

Friday night I picked up a couple of rock bass, a smallmouth, and a short walleye around some rock. Saturday morning I moved around the north end and tried different things, which yielded three Northern and a bunch of rock bass. Shiners gave me the best results.

Everyone else, including the WAM tourney boats, seemed to be moving a lot, too, and I didn't see or talk to anyone who was catching much. I heard of a few decent walleye caught, but did not see any. The cold front that came through probably explains that. That's my excuse, anyway. grin I'll be back in two weeks, and will make up for this weekend.

No algae bloom yet, which is normal. The new pencil reeds are poking out of the water, and the shallow cabbage beds are filling in pretty well. The coontail seems to be growing out to about 12' or 13', with very little deeper than that. Surface temps over deep water in the north end were 62-63 degrees.

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I fished Friday night. Was fighting the wind when fishing for Bass shallow and caught 3 small ones. Trolled a bit at the end and caught two short walleyes and a northern.

Saturday we went out trolling at 5 until 8 in the evening (because we were sick of being cooped up in the cabin) put on lots of layers and gloves and trolled plugs in 7 /12 to 9 foot of water over the weeds. The walleyes were pounding the plugs. We ended up with 14 of them, most between 15 - 16 1/2 and a 20 incher. With as agressive as they were I thought they were in a feeding frenzy, however when we cleaned them, there was nothing in there stomach. We also caught a few northerns and a couple of smallie.

We went out Sunday morning and only caught a couple of walleyes but caught a bunch of northerns. Again we were trolling plugs. I was unable to fish in the evening to see if this was an evening bite or a one time deal.

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The walleyes have been biting in roughly 20 to 22 feet of water on some of the humps. I had a guide trip out there last week and had a two person limit by around 9 oclock. Shiners and lindy rigs were what we used but a few fish were caught on jigs! Stay away from the deep stuff! Anyone can go out that deep and start popping walleyes but the thing is most of those fish die regardless of what you think You might be doing to help save those fish. Water Pressure doubles at 36 feet of water, anything deeper than that fish will pop. The next thing if you are chatching them that deep (which I dont agree with) and that fish looks like it swam down the the bottom it probably did but it crushed its airsack on the way down because it doubled on the way down so the fish just sinks and dies on the bottom versus the top. Stick to the shallows fish are being caught way shallower than that! Good luck.

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Saturday we went out trolling at 5 until 8 in the evening (because we were sick of being cooped up in the cabin) put on lots of layers and gloves and trolled plugs in 7 /12 to 9 foot of water over the weeds. The walleyes were pounding the plugs. We ended up with 14 of them, most between 15 - 16 1/2 and a 20 incher. Again we were trolling plugs. I was unable to fish in the evening to see if this was an evening bite or a one time deal.

I tried this exact thing (trolling cranks over the cabbage beds and just outside the pencil reeds) Saturday morning with zero luck. I didn't even pick up a Northern, which left me a little befuddled--I always pick up pike doing this.

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I would have to agree that not even a northern is a bit suprising. I was not near any pencil reeds when I was trolling. When we were in front of Pencil reeds we were easily 20 yards out.

But I did not catch much on Friday night and also we only caught a couple of walleyes on Sunday morning. So maybe we just got lucky and the bite was on, on Saturday night. I am still learning the lake but I do know from last year that at times trolling over the weeds is very successful. Last year they were having luck (In late july) with similar plugs but due to the weed growth they were trolling in 12 - 13 foot of water at that time of the year.

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Say HH, I am curious those walleyes you caught in 20 - 22 foot of water, did they have anything in their stomach. The ones I caught in 8 1/2 foot had completely empty stomachs. Not sure if I caught them at the start of a feeding binge or what but I was amazed that none of them had anything in their stomachs.

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Their stomachs were filled with small minnows! To give you a heads up!

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MikeB2205

Coming up over the 4th of July weekend. Never fished the lake before. Pretty excited, love fishing and catching fish no matter what it is. If anyone is willing to give me any help on a few spots maybe or anything you can shoot me an e-mail. Is this a good lake to fish or would I be wasting my time?

Thanks for the help!!!!

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Finlander

Don't go! There's no fish left! I caught them all! LOL!

Can you say Rapala's! Bring an assortment, the walleye's love'em! #5 Shad Raps. #13 blue/silver floating Rapala's will get you fish by trolling the 9-15' of water at that time.

I've been fishing this lake since 1968 and the fishing is still better than most lakes. Lots of pike too!

Bring some crawlers for big bluegills under a bobber and fish them next or in the openings of the pencil reeds say in 5-7' of water and search around till you find them.

This lake walleye's like crawler/spinner rigs for combing the 15' drop-offs for walleye's. Gold bldes work best. Also add a stinger hook to the spinner to get the short biters!

Good Luck! grin

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carpmanjake

if you dont get any luck up there, feel free to contact me and i can get you into some fish here in alex.

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MikeB2205

Thanks for all the info guys. I appreciate the help. We ususally go up farther north but we're trying to stay a little closer to home this year. We've got a few little guys we bring and it's just better for them with the shorter rid. So, we're really looking forward to it and especially fishing. We don't have the pleasure of having many good lakes here in Iowa. So, it's a real treat to be able to fish in Minnesota.

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    • JBMasterAngler
      By JBMasterAngler
      Just curious how far some of you have walked across a lake to find a fishing spot? I don’t officially know myself, but assume I’ve done 3 or so miles round trip on Mille Lacs looking for tullibee. I’m probably going to try and double that (and more) in search of them again, late in the season. Has anyone traveled via bicycle across ice? I’m considering that too. Oh what we’re willing to do for a fish 🙄 😳🤣
    • JBMasterAngler
      By JBMasterAngler
      Just out of curiosity, has anyone fished in Texas before, particularly the Dallas/Ft. Worth area? I’ll be down there the week of thanksgiving, and hoping to plan a fishing day.
       
      Originally, I was thinking of going after alligator gar. But it doesn’t sound like November is the greatest month to target them. So I’m leaning towards a multi species outing, with an emphasis on striped bass.
       
      So, just wondering if anyone has been down there and has any guides or resorts to recommend.
       
  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Hookmaster
      Rick G, how many times did Hairy bite until you hooked it?
    • gimruis
      If you intend to fish past Sunday, you'll need a new 2021 angling license.   Additionally, the deadline to remove permanent/overnight fish houses is Monday in the southern half of the state.  If found unattended over night beyond the deadline, enforcement officials can confiscate the house itself.
    • nytelyter
      Count Me and Ann in.  Will Bring PIE even came up with a new flavor this past summer called "Lemon Drop" also I will Bring chips and Clam dip. keep us posted thanks!!  
    • CigarGuy
      Was that you out fishing by the mouth of H.O.L. Bay last evening? We went out towards Wakemup, marked a few but not takers.
    • SkunkedAgain
      Well I sure picked the wrong week to be up at the lake! I certainly enjoy the coldest of days more than this spring weather in February. Seeing the sun is nice, but I'd rather see that at the end of March versus now. What powder there was on the lake is virtually gone. On the plus side, the snow base is solid and good for 4-wheelers as well as sleds. Hopefully we get 6-12" of snow soon and then we will have some great riding conditions. I didn't ride the trails, but did ride quite a bit in the woods. Things are getting bare.   Edit - I just walked outside....it's snowing! I should have complained sooner...
    • smurfy
    • walleye101
      At the risk of sending this thread further off the rails, let's talk "slots". There is nothing majic about a protected slot limit (PSL). It can be a useful tool if your spawning stock NEEDS some protection, or if there is demand for growing larger fish.  All of the lakes you mention have had a PSL in the past, and some still do.  The most used PSL originally, protected all fish from 17-26 inches, because that protection covered almost all the mature females in a population (and lots of mature males). The thought at the time was that if some spawners are good, more is better, or at least can't hurt.  Wrong! Almost all those lakes have since adjusted those PSLs, or eliminated them. Red closed the fishery during restoration, then used the PSL while spawning stock still NEEDED some protection. Upper Red has since abandoned the PSL all together for much less restrictive, one over 17", or 20" regulations. Both allow considerable harvest of spawners. The other lakes mentioned have all experienced some stockpiling of excess spawning stock and suppression of new year classes, causing managers to make multiple adjustments to allow more harvest and free up productivity. Lake of the Woods, which you didn't mention started out with a 19.5-28" PSL to be more compatible with Ontario's regulation (50cm). That worked out well because it allowed considerable harvest under the PSL, reducing spawner density before they grew into the PSL.  Finally there's Mille Lacs which has continued with very restrictive harvest regulations, currently with a closed summer season, no PSL, but insted a two inch harvest slot limit.  Lot's of large fish, an abundance of spawning stock, but recruitment of new young fish has been dismal.  Now can we get back to discussing why a statewide bag limit reduction applied across all Minnesota walleye lakes, natural or stocked, makes no sense?       
    • 7sixes
      Thanks everyone for the reassurance! Everything was fine but not a thing was biting and nothing even appeared on text book perfect sand bars 😭
    • Wanderer
      If Smurfy thinks it’s safe you could drive a car hauler full of Ford Rangers on it. 🤭
    • Rick G
      Two feet of ice is going to take a little bit to damage it.   You will know when it's time to quit driving out.  access points are usually the fish to show how bad the ice is deteriorating.   
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