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2012 Sturgeon Excursion

Capt. Quicksteel

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well everyone in my group bailed.... will that stop me from coming up? heck no ill be at wigwam wed-sunday! see ya all up there


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Surface Tension and myself are staying at Schusters. We will be monitoring the marine radio throughout the trip. Give us a shout if your on. Iceman 16, great to hear you're stepping up. Hope to see you on the water! BC

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Fished till late last night got a few nice ones, this morning was slow up river.

Spotty reports but a few nice fish being caught.

Hittin it hard tonight....

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I'll be the solo angler in a red ranger 617. Can't wait to get up there. Heading to neater falls from Sunday to Wednesday and then rainy river for monster sturgeon. Can't wait!


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If there is anyone looking to go up but doesn't have a boat. Shoot me a email. I'll be up at the wigwam on Wednesday afternoon. Could always use a net man! Ha ha ha email me we can figure it out. I'll be coming from neater falls so we wouldn't be able to car pool.


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We just got back last night. Great fishing. We caught 11 fish. One was 59 inches, 3 in 50's and the rest between 45-48 inches with a couple of little ones. All in the river. Best part was when we went up river we caught 3 of the fattest yellow bullheads I've ever seen! We almost came looking for DTRO to see if he needed flathead bait! Another great trip. Barbelboy will post pictures this week.

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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

Nice fish guys!

Got back Mon night and haven't gotten the gear or photos unloaded yet.

There would be four of us, BC and our sons Nate and Frank Jr.

We left Twig,Mn at 1:30AM Fri and got to Shusters around 7:AM.

I think we were the only ones there all weekend. Sort of missed the rest of the gang and what is the SE but we did meet up with Darren and John on the river.

Fished Fri-Monday and boated 38 sturgeon. Biggest was 61.5"

Both boys set a new personal best on this Sturgeon Excursion.

Got the boat in the water ran and out to 4 Mile. It was too windy to fish effectively so bumped around in the river till the evening. Nothing boated all day long.

Fished 4 Mile Fri night with the company of Darren and John after the winds died and boated 7 sturgeon there.


Woke up Sat to brisk Easterly wind and light rain, thankfully we had a cover to get under. Using the drift sock out the stern enabled us to be lined up with the current as we're set up to fish out the back of the boat. Fished 4 mile again till noon, did not boat anything there but see a few fished being fought and netted.

Headed to the river to get out of the wind and more fishable conditions.

That was a good move and by days end we landed 15 sturgeon. Except for the occasional passing boat were all alone there.

Sunday was bluebird skies and light wind. We went back to the solitude of where we fished the river on Sat. If not for the break for a burger at Sportsmans we might have done better then the 13 Sturgeon boated by sunset. It was a very nice day and the burgers were great too.

Mon the river was virtually a ghost town. After moving out of our cabin at Shusters we put in a few hours in and landed 3 sturgeon, one being 61.5" in flat calm conditions. Wished we could have stayed longer but it was time to end the trip.

We'll be back next year for sure!


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We caught such a mixed bag this year DTro. I really don't know what to make of it. Lot's of babies mixed in with the monsters. Definitely different year classes. The Rainy's sturgeon population look's awesome for all future outings. I'd say our boy's are certainly hooked for life. Great to see you and John again. Although I think you two pulled the pin a little early. The weather turned out fabulous with no boats in sight. BC

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I'd say this was certainly our best year for bigger fish. 12 of 17 were over 50" with 2 over 60". In years past we've had better numbers but lots of 40" fish. Got a text today with a 72 1/2"!!!!

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  • 10 months later...


Anyone else notice the average fish size getting bigger and bigger each year? wink

Absolutely. Every year just keeps getting better and better. I wasn't sure if we would top for 2011 trip last year but we crushed it with 38 fish over 50" and 6 over 60"

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Rick G
      St Cloud has a good access at Wilson park,  Sartell has a nice access off NE River Rd,  another access above Blanchard dam on East side off Hilton Rd  and at Lindbergh state park...Little Falls  has a access right above the dam.   Water is pretty high and dirty.  Crayfish colors have been good again this week.  Smallies have been using anything available that breaks the current so finding them most days has been pretty easy
    • Brianf.
      Interesting...   You're doing better than most.  The biggest bass weighed-in during the recent MN Bass Federation tourney was only 4.33lbs.   The winning bag was less then 20lbs.  To have several over 5lbs during your trip is pretty special.   Congrats!  
    • Jetsky
      Question.  I have guests coming who may want to fish for muskies.  I've cast for them in August along shorelines and at rock piles.   Do I fish for them that way in June?   Should I troll shorelines or drop offs for them?  Thanks.
    • partyonpine
      Yeah was up for a week.   As other alluded to the weather was brutal.  Did catch some larger walleyes on slip bobbers on windy points in under 5 feet of water.  As for minnows they were at Lucky seven in Virginia and Grubens has some nice minnows as well.  Smallmouth fishing was terrific given the circumstances.  
    • partyonpine
      Brian   That is funny and shows how things are anecdotal.  Just got back from a week we caught as many fish as we wanted, however our average size was 16.5-17 inches.  While no 6 pounders we did score several 5 pounders.  We did not catch any or very few fish under 14  inches all week.  I was just commenting that the average size has increased substantially.  We were throwing larger artificial and live bait but again did not really catch any small smallmouth.  Fished smallies for 5-6 hours each day and walleyes at night.  Overall was slow but the weather was horrendous.  Did go home with enough walleye to satisfy me.  
    • Brianf.
      I haven't been up to fish smallmouth  in a couple weeks.  My partner and I caught about 300 over the  course of those two days.  That sounds great - and it is if you like numbers. However, few of those fish were over 3 pounds and even fewer were over 4 pounds.  Most of our catch comprised fish between one and a half to 2 1/2 pounds.   I've been fishing the lake for 20+ years and feel that the size structure of the smallmouth in the lake has changed quite a bit during that time.  When I first started targeting smallmouth 20 years ago, half our bag seemed to be comprised of four pounders - and five pounders were in the mix with an occasional six pounder here and there. I haven't caught a 5 pound smallmouth bass in five years on Lake Vermilion!   They are a daily occurrence on places like Mille Lacs and in Door Co.   What has changed on Lake Vermilion?     I have some theories about why the size structure has changed, though curious what others are seeing.  Anyone have thoughts about the state of the smallmouth fishery on Lake V? 
    • SkunkedAgain
      Don't forget about the times that they unwittingly fly into your fishing line.   Normally I would say that ebbs and flows in food source would be a good sign. However, even with this bountiful mosquito population available there just really aren't enough bats around for the natural cycle to capitalize on it to any noticeable degree. The DNR says that roughly 90% of the bat population in the Soudan mine has died off. If that 90% is representative of the entire area, even a mosquito all-you-can-eat-buffet will not bring the bats back for many years.   Hopefully the little guys can make a comeback.
    • Dash 1
      Made it back to the chain today. Sunfish are spawning but finding them in the thick weeds is nearly impossible. My main reason to get out was to test my minnkota after rewiring it. It definitely made the difference. Never shut down once and I ran it for several hours.  Now I just need to relearn how to catch fish.😂
    • LakeofthewoodsMN
      On the south end...   A good week of walleye fishing with some big fish caught along with good eaters.  All of that despite some fronts that came through and lots of wind.  Being in a charter boat a few days this week was an advantage for sure.     Wherever you fish, there are days the wind will blow.  Here are some good options for anglers when the wind blows on LOW.   -Fish on a big charter boat -Fish the 42 miles of navigable Rainy River -Bays such as Four Mile, Bostic and Zippel Bay -Slide behind one of the thousands of islands that being up at the NW Angle -Trailer your boat to a leeward boat ramp and fish that shoreline A jig and frozen emerald shiner was the go to presentation for walleyes.  Most boats are anchored up and vertically jigging.  Some are starting to use spinners and minnows or crawlers with success.  This pattern will pick up steam as the walleyes are starting to transition with warming waters. Walleyes have been caught this week in various depths.  As a rule, 21 - 32 feet of water was still the range.  Again, various areas across the lake are holding fish.   Various rock reefs have been good.  Fish are transitioning to mud as the season progresses. On the Rainy River...  The river is flowing strong right now as water is being released from the dam which controls its flow.  With the heavier current, fish are being found in areas with a current break.  Even a slight break that still has current is a fish attractor when the water is moving.   Jigging with a minnow, pulling spinners and trolling crankbaits along shoreline breaks against the current in 6 - 12' of water is producing a mixed bag of walleyes, saugers, pike, smallmouth bass and an occasional crappie.   Casting to shoreline structure and even docks is also an effective method.   For those who like fishing for dinosaurs, the sturgeon season opens July 1st. Up at the NW Angle...  A great week of fishing amongst the island area of Lake of the Woods.  Guides fishing the Canada side of LOW reported big numbers of walleyes along with a mixed bag.   Minnesota waters also produced good fish.  Many of the walleyes are being found in deeper than normal water for this time of year, in that 22 - 28 feet.  As hatches begin and shiners begin to spawn, there will be some shallow water opportunities as well. The goto presentation continues to be a jig and minnow.  Pulling spinners with shiners or crawlers and trolling crankbaits also putting walleyes in the fry pan.     As is common in these parts, a mixed bag of walleyes, saugers, pike, jumbo perch, crappies, pike and smallmouth bass being caught.   Muskie anglers, the season opens on both sides of the lake Saturday, June 15th.  A glorious day for those who target the almighty predators!  
    • leech~~
      Over the years the only sure time I have been able to see bats or know their around.  Is sitting by a fire or down by a dock at sun down when there's just a bit of light left when looking up, and seeing them diving in and out.  
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