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West Metro - Minnetonka, Waconia, Prior Lake Fishing Reports by Great Day on the Water Guide Service


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Troy Smutka

4/5/17     Crappies are starting on west Metro lakes. Out on one on Tuesday afternoon. Water temp in the mid 40s. Mainly smaller crappies from 7-10 inches so far, that will improve when the water warms a bit more. Still fast and furious action. Catching a fish or two a minute. Fish were in nine to fourteen feet of water over developing weeds close to shallower, weedier areas where they will wind up soon. Fished a jig and soft plastic minnow under a slip-float set a five feet deep. The crappies fed up nicely. Down and out for a week or so here after a surgery, but will be back with reports soon. In the meantime, check out my YouTube channel linked from my website. In addition to short how-to video segments, I now am running feature length shows about a seasonal topic, one per month. Second episode is about spring crappies from a west metro lake. Hopefully educational and entertaining. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

I got this crappie on Waconia in early May.JPG

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7/24/17     Got my son and one of my daughters out with Grandpa Smutka on Waconia this afternoon (I have football practice every morning this week). We targeted panfish alongside a weedy reef. Small j

6/9/15     On Waconia and Minnetonka the past few days. Caught mostly largemouth and panfish, but also a few pike and a couple walleyes. Bass, pike, and eyes are on the inside weed edges and especiall

6/23/18     Guided on Waconia on Saturday. Clients from Iowa looking for walleyes, northerns, and maybe a musky. No musky, but did catch walleyes, northerns, bass, and crappies, including some big one

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Troy Smutka

4/15/17     Crappies are still biting well in the West Metro area. Still catching all the crappies we can reel in on soft plastics under a slip bobber. Fish are still staging over weeds in 12 to 15 feet of water--we are fishing five to six feet down and the suspended crappies are feeding up. Females with eggs are starting to show up, so be careful about overharvesting. Males are starting to look darker than the females and aren't as pudgy in the belly. Can't be perfect, but try to take mostly males and resist the urge to "freezer fill." Even seemingly "endless" panfish populations can be seriously damaged this time of year by overharvesting. Also, taking limit after limit day after day is illegal unless you are eating them and not freezing them--just ask the three young guys I saw getting ticketed and giving up there huge over-limit of crappies to a game warden on Friday. Get the kids out to enjoy this fun fishing whenever the weather is nice enough. With water temps still stuck in the mid to upper 40's, this bite will be going on for a while now, and should even get better. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

4/23/17     Crappies still biting in west Metro area lakes. Water temp in the mid 50's now, and the fish are moving a little shallower. We caught tons of 8 to 11 inch crappies in about ten feet of water, with some weeds on the bottom. Fished a jig tipped with a Powerbait minnow about four feet below a slip-float for great success. Some sunfish starting to show up in the same areas. Water temp probably won't rise much this week with the forecast of cooler temps and quite a bit of rain, but as the water does warm fish should continue to move shallower and get more aggressive. Check out my You Tube channel for some short video clips and a full length show about springtime crappie fishing. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

Memorial Weekend,

     Hit Waconia Saturday morning for bass. Caught about 40 largemouth--most from 14 to 17 inches, with a few 17 and 18 inchers--and several nice pike. Fish were in cabbage out from bedding areas, in about 6 to 9 feet of water. Fish were scattered, lying in the weeds looking up for sunfish that are staging in these areas preparing to move in and bed. With this situation, we buzzed spinnerbaits and weedless spoons over and through the tops of the weeds, and the bass aggressively came up on them, as well as some pike. Had one lazy muskie follow as well. Got good footage for a bass segment of Fishing and Hunting the North Country on You Tube. Added footage of a couple smallies from out in the Hutch area Saturday evening. The bass fishing will continue to get better as the water warms, with more big ones, and the sunfish bedding bite is probably only a week or less away. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

6/10/17     Sunfish are just starting to bed on west Metro area lakes, and crappies are just finishing spawning in some. Also, bass are on the inside weed edges feeding on the sunfish and crappies. My son and I found an area with all three going on and he had a blast. We were fishing with 1/16 ounce jigs tipped with 1" soft plastics suspended under a slip bobber in about three feet of water. Sunnies were just starting to make beds in the hard bottom near shore, crappies were in weed patches near these areas, and bass were cruising the area. My son caught about a dozen sunnies, maybe twenty crappies, and his three largest bass in an hour-and-a-half. Get out and enjoy this bite, and look for an episode about bedding sunfish upcoming on my You Tube show, "Fishing and Hunting the North Country." Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

6/12/17     Sunfish bedding on west Metro area lakes. My son and one of my daughters got out with me this morning before the storms and caught a bunch of bluegills, a few big pumpkinseeds, and a few bass. All had a blast as the smiles in the pictures will attest to. Using seven foot ultralight St. Croix Panfish Series rods with Pflueger ultralight Trion reels spooled with 4 pound test Berkley Nanofil Clear Mist. Nanofil tied to a barrel swivel tied to 18" of Berkley Vanish Fluorocarbon which is tied to a 1/16 ounce VMC Moon Eye jig. Jig is tipped with a 1" to 1.5" scented soft plastic tube or grub, and suspended under a slip float. Fishing down about 2 feet in three to five feet of water. Looking for firm bottom areas near shore, inside of the inside weed edge. Males are making beds in these areas, and females are staging over the weeds further out, moving to and from the beds. Some of these areas also have crappies on the inside weed edge, where they just finished spawning and are feeding strong. All of these areas have bass and pike looking for a sunfish meal, so be ready for something big. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

6/15/17     Got my Dad and one of my daughters out on Tonka this morning. Beautiful morning on the lake. Caught several nice largemouth and a bunch of pike. Spinnerbaits and swimbaits near the inside weed edge caught bass and pike feeding near where the sunfish are making beds and beginning to spawn. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

6/16/17     Grandfather, father, and son out on Waconia for a couple hours this morning. Got six walleyes, a couple big bass, and a couple big sunfish with leeches under slip bobbers on a shallow reef. Good bite with some clouds, wind, and occasional drizzle this morning. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

6/20/17     Fished Tonka this morning, first in rain then in sun and a NW breeze. Targeting largemouth in weed beds from six to ten feet deep on the shoreline flats before the first major break. Moved around quickly with MinnKota looking for areas with grass, cabbage, or coontail alone or mixed with some milfoil or curly leaf. Used the spot lock to anchor over these cleaner weeds and fan cast topwater baits early with light winds, clouds, and light rain, then Storm swimbaits and Terminator spinnerbaits when it got sunny and breezier. Caught fifteen nice largemouth, plus another dozen smaller ones, one smallmouth, and sixteen pike from twenty to thirty inches. Lots of smaller sunfish moving around in the tops of these weeds--the bass and pike were there feeding on them. Found a lot of large male sunfish still up on the hard bottom inside these weed flats on the beds. Finished the morning catching a few dozen of these big bulls--bluegills and pumpkinseeds. Great day on the water. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

6/21/17 Got out to Prior this morning. Lots of 14 to 18 inch largemouth in the weed flats just off shore and in the weeds near the top of reefs. Anywhere we found cabbage or coontail patches in the milfoil we caught bass. A couple pike as well. Storm swimbaits (bluegill color) and white or chartreuse Terminator 1/2 ounce spinnerbaits over and through the weed tops were the ticket. Finished checking for sunfish bedding. Found some big bluegills, pumpkinseeds, and hybrids bedding in three to six feet of water, between shore and the weed flats. Small plastic tubes on a 1/16 ounce VMC jig under a slip float worked great. Lots of 8 to 9 inchers with a few smaller, but not much smaller. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

7/5/17     Got out on Tonka the day after the fourth. Garbage everywhere at the landing and quite a bit in the lake. Sad. Picked up a bunch and disposed of properly. Caught eight nice largemouth, all about16 to 18 inches, and at least fifteen pike from one to three pounds. Also had an upper 40's muskie hooked up for about a minute, but got rolled up in the too-light line on his second jump and sliced it off shortly after. Clouds and showers over us had fish up in the mid-depth weeds on a couple reefs we tried before it got HOT and HUMID and we called it a morning. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

7/14/17   Fished Tonka with my Dad and son this morning. Buzzed 1/2 ounce bass spinnerbaits and 1 ounce muskie spinnerbaits over weedy shelves on reefs in eight to fourteen feet of water with quick access to deeper water. Caught a bunch of bass and pike--no muskies this morning. My son got his biggest pike and one of his biggest bass. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

8/10/17     Guided two guys for muskies on Waconia this morning. Got lucky with the weather and got our trip in before the rain showed up. Didn't put a muskie in the boat, but had one on briefly, and had another follow. Also caught four pike, including a ten and twelve pounder, and eleven largemouth up to 18.5 inches. One ounce tandem spinnerbaits, both bucktails and rubber skirts, were the baits. Ran them over and through weeds in four to eleven feet of water. Great company and conversation--a great day on the water. Good luck and I will see you out there somewhere.

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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators
17 hours ago, Troy Smutka said:

8/10/17     Guided two guys for muskies on Waconia this morning. Got lucky with the weather and got our trip in before the rain showed up. Didn't put a muskie in the boat, but had one on briefly, and had another follow. Also caught four pike, including a ten and twelve pounder, and eleven largemouth up to 18.5 inches. One ounce tandem spinnerbaits, both bucktails and rubber skirts, were the baits. Ran them over and through weeds in four to eleven feet of water. Great company and conversation--a great day on the water. Good luck and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Thanks for the report Troy .... looks like fun. :) 

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Troy Smutka

9/1/17     Got out on Waconia this morning. Fished large (1 ounce) spinnerbaits, both hair and rubber skirts, over weeds near rocks from five to eleven feet of water. No muskies showed themselves this morning, but did catch eight bass all about the same size, and a couple identical pike. Finished up slow rolling jig spinners with Powerbait minnows over and around a weedy reef for crappies. Caught about twenty nice-sized crappies before calling it a morning. My boat may be headed down the road on Sunday. If so, this will probably be my last open-water report. I will begin doing waterfowl hunting reports on the ducks and geese hunting forum at the end of the month, and will be back on this forum as well as the Hutchinson and Mille Lacs forums once there is enough ice to head out on the lake. Great fall fishing to everyone--football and hunting take up my spare time for a while now. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

12/18/17     First Ice Fishing Report of the Season!

Ice conditions are still varied on the larger metro area lakes, so we headed out onto a small, farm country lake just west of the metro. Consistent 5-6 inche of good, clear ice with almost no snow on top. Targeted pike with jigging spoons and soft plastics, and with tipups with live suckers along the weed edge, in eight to nine feet of water. Caught several nice pike. Hoping to get out next weekend before the big chill hits. Good news is, should make plenty of good ice starting on Christmas Day if the forecast holds up. Good luck, be safe on the ice, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

12/28/17     West Metro

     Panfish are starting to bite on metro area lakes. The cold snap is thickening up the ice quickly, and many sunfish and crappies are moving to deep holes adjacent to shallower points and reefs. We caught some nice sunfish and even a couple bass in 21 feet of water on small Tungsten Tubbies tipped with waxies and red Eurolarvae. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

 

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Troy Smutka

1/14/18     Tried the night crappie bite on a small west metro area lake last night. Crappies on the flasher from 4:30 until we left at 7 pm. Still down there when we had to leave. Caught between 40 and 50. A few small ones, but most were from 8 to 10 inches. Kept ten from 9-10 inches for a meal. Hot and cold bite periods during the evening, but fish down there the whole time. Caught one on a crappie minnow under a float, but most were on small Tungsten Tubby jigs tipped with a single wax worm, or a small VMC spoon tipped with a waxie hooked horizontally on two of the hooks of the treble. Dark, cold, and my battery was drained on my phone so no pics. Twenty inches of good ice and not much snow, so easy driving but tough (slippery) walking. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

1/28/18     Hit a west metro lake Saturday morning for sunfish. Fished a deep hole near a shallow reef. Tons of sunfish of all sizes visible on the flashers and camera all morning, but the best bite was the first hour after sunrise. After that, only an occasional bite, but the ones that bit were the largest ones. Most of the sunnies we caught were from 8 to 8.5 inches with a couple around 9. Tiny Gill Pills in white or orange/chartreuse tipped with two red Eurolarvae caught the most fish, We were in 21 feet of water. Twenty-four inches of ice, but a fair amount of snow on top from the last storm. Had to be careful venturing too far from plowed roads. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

2/4/18     Got out on a small west metro lake for the night crappie bite last night. Crappies were suspended and biting the second we got our lines down at about 4:30. Caught 40-50 crappies by the time we had to leave at 7 pm. Also caught a couple nice sunfish. The crappies were mostly around nine inches with a few larger and a few smaller. Small VMC spoons in glow colors tipped with one waxie horizontally across two hooks of the treble or two red Eurolarvae hooked in the middle on two of the hooks both hammered fish. 2 lb test Vanish fluorocarbon on an inline ice reel on an ultralight St. Croix Legend Black with a strike indicator rounded out the rig. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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IceHawk

Nice job Troy love the detailed report

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Troy Smutka

2/11/18     Fished Waconia Saturday morning from 7 to 11 am. Caught a couple nice crappies right away, and then the sunfish took over. Caught fifty or sixty sunfish. About half were 8 inches or slightly over. Most of the rest were between 7 and 8 inches with a few potato chips. We were fishing a shelf next to a deeper basin area. We were in about twelve feet of water, not far from 21 feet. Two to three feet of weeds on the bottom, so we fished just above the weeds and the sunfish steadily rose up from the weeds to look at our baits. A small VMC Tungsten Tubby or Custom Jigs and Spins Gill Pill both worked--pink and white or chartreuse and orange were the best colors. One waxie or two red Eurolarvae on these jigs both triggered strikes. Two pound test Vanish fluorocarbon on a St. Croix Legend Black Ice Rod, 24" Ultralight, with a Cold Gear Ice inline ice reel. The strike indicator on the St. Croix was necessary sometimes to detect very light strikes. We recorded an episode of "Fishing and Hunting the North Country" for my You Tube channel. Look for the episode late this week. Twenty-eight inches of ice and not much snow where we were. Get out and enjoy the warm-up with some ice fishing for sunnies and crappies. I have some openings if you need some help. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

2/18/18     Got out on an area lake an hour before sunrise Saturday. Got a bunch of crappies until they slowed about 9 am. Most between 9.5 and 11 inches. Sunfish started biting about sunrise and bit all morning. Half of them were 8 to 8.5 inches. Most of the rest were 7 to 7.5 inches. Kept two meals of fish--released the rest. 1/32 ounce VMC Tungsten Tubbies tipped with a single wax worm or two red Eurolarvae fished just above some weeds in thirteen feet of water caught fish after fish. Lots of good ice on area lakes. Even though walleyes and pike close in just over a week and wheel houses can't stay out unattended soon, still a lot of good ice fishing for panfish to come. Will have plenty of ice for a while, so get out and enjoy the peace and quiet and fast crappie and sunfish action that March will bring. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

2/24/18     Got out on a west Metro lake Friday evening for the night crappie bite. Caught some nice sunfish before sunset and then the crappies started. Not keeping any, but caught several sunfish in the 8" range and 30-40 crappies, mostly 10-11 inches, by 8 pm when we had to leave. Most of the sunnies were pulled up out of the three feet of weeds on the bottom--most of the crappies moved through well above the weeds. Sunnies and most of the crappies came on 1/32 ounce VMC Tungsten Tubbies tipped with a single wax worm or two red Eurolarvae. A few crappies grabbed a crappie minnow suspended under a float on a deadstick. Still plenty of ice--will be for a while--so get out and enjoy this great panfishing even after walleyes and pike close and the wheel houses come off. I have a few available dates left if you need some help. Shout out to all who were at the R&R Marine Open House today. Great questions for our fishing roundtable, hope we were of some help. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

Memorial Weekend, 2018

     Got out in the west Metro and Hutchinson areas this weekend. Targeted bass, caught largemouth, smallmouth, pike, crappies, and sunfish. Various lures worked in similar locations. Join and check out the Fishing Reports Club in the Home Page Top Menu for more in-depth reports and photos. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

6/22/18     West Metro

Water temp is in the 70's and sunfish are up on the beds. Look for harder bottom areas inside of or adjacent to softer bottom with weeds. The smaller females will be staging over the weeds--you may see them boiling--and the big bulls will be guarding the nests (beds) on the firmer bottom. Got my son and Dad out to catch a bunch this morning.  Ultralight 7' spinning rods/reels with four pound test Berkley Nanofil works great to cast to these bedding fish from a distance and get a good hook set. We use a 1/16 ounce VMC Mooneye Jig tipped with a 1" to 1.5" soft plastic (minnow, grub, tube, etc.) under a slip float to adjust for beds at different depths. Usually you will be targeting 2-8 feet of water, depending on water clarity. Take care not to keep everything you catch. It is fine to keep a fresh meal once in a while--sunfish is awfully tasty--but put plenty of fish, including the biggest bulls, back. Needed to keep the natural cycle of reproduction going. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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Troy Smutka

6/23/18     Guided on Waconia on Saturday. Clients from Iowa looking for walleyes, northerns, and maybe a musky. No musky, but did catch walleyes, northerns, bass, and crappies, including some big ones. Fished inside weed edges in 7-10 feet of water using crankbaits, bucktails, jerkbaits, and jig spinners. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

Nice.

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Troy Smutka

7/24/18     Had a crappie fishing trip on Waconia this week. Got out in the afternoon and my client and I caught 50-60 crappies and maybe twenty bluegills. Slow rolling jig spinners tipped with soft plastic minnows and grubs around a weedy reef caught both crappies and sunnies. Good fishing, good conversation, good day. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.

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    • BigTrucka
      By BigTrucka
      Hey all, just moved back to MN where I grew up after living in the PNW for a long while. I became addicted to fishing rivers and streams out there and have started to check out the offerings in the NW section of the state as of yesterday’s opener. Wondering if anyone has experience in this area and can give me some pointers or just tell me if I’m wasting my time since that’s what I’m wondering right now since I didn’t find any signs of fish. I’m using a spinning rod with Mepp’s and Panther Martin style spinners and went through a bunch of color combos. I started yesterday morning at the Clearwater River in western Beltrami County essentially on the border with Clearwater County where the state has some land and a pretty lengthy easement. Probably a well known area. Beautiful area to walk through. Found multiple holes, but yeah no fish at all. I waded for a bit and decided to leave. I went south since I live closer to Moorhead and stopped at Felton Creek. I’ve read a DNR study about this creek having a decreasing population of fish, but it’s still considered a trout stream although not “designated”. I understand the channelization of creeks in this region ruined fish habitat over the last 100 years, but still find some DNR material as of the last 5 years that reference Felton Creek as a spot for trout. Walked the stream for a bit before I left and headed to Lawndale Creek south of Barnesville. I waded through the AMA on the Atherton WMA expecting to find some brook trout since the DNR has stocked it as of at least 2017. Nothing through the entire stretch besides frogs and minnows. Are there actually fish in these places? The Clearwater and Lawndale are designated trout streams. The Clearwater is stocked annually and Lawndale is supposed to have wild brook trout. Anyone have any experience in these spots? Should’ve just drove down MN200 & 71 to the obvious spots in Becker/Hubbard?
    • SkunkedAgain
      By SkunkedAgain
      Someone had to kick things off.
       
      I caught some shrimp at the grocery store over the weekend. I'm hoping to see some spawning walleye this weekend. Who knows where they will be in a month when we are all allowed to actually fish for them!
    • Coleman
      By Coleman
      Has anyone been on the water of areas lakes?  Kinda curious what the water temps are hovering around?  
    • LakeofthewoodsMN
      By LakeofthewoodsMN
      On the south end... The lake is still ice covered with big stretches of open water which is expanding daily.  Anglers fishing the lake are fishing in front of the Lighthouse Gap where the Rainy River enters LOW.  Anglers are allowed a limit of walleyes and saugers on the lake, but catch and release only on Four Mile Bay and the Rainy River during the spring walleye season which lasts through April 14.  The walleye season opens again on May 15th.
      Pike Fishing.  Open water is available in the back bays such as various Four Mile Bay, Bostic Creek, Zippel Bay and backwaters on the Rainy River where pike spawn.  Some nice pike being caught in shallow water areas.  These areas are off of the main lake and perfect for small boats.  The pike season is open year round on LOW and the Rainy River.  3 fish per day, 30-40 inches must be released, one over 40" allowed.  
      On the Rainy River...   This past week was nothing short of incredible for walleye fishing on the Rainy River.  Large numbers of big walleyes were caught and released.  Many fish 30 - 33+ inches in the mix.  Exactly why anglers love the Rainy River in the spring.  
      Good reports up and down the river including Four Mile Bay.
      A 3/8 - 1/2 ounce jig is working nicely tipped with a minnow or a plastic.  Bright plastics and frozen shiners working best on jigs.  Some anglers trolling crankbaits with success to cover water.  
      Sturgeon fishing continues to be good with good numbers of sturgeon being caught.  Most anglers targeting holes in the river.  Some sturgeon being caught on rolling sand dunes with fish laying in the depressions. Wherever there is food and a bit of slacker water!
      With lower current, a 3 ounce no-roll sinker combined with a sturgeon rig (18" snell of 60 lb test with a 4/0 or 5/0 circle hook) with a glob of crawlers, frozen emerald shiners or both is the ticket.  Local bait shops have rigs and bait available.
      Up at the NW Angle...  Locals are able to get their boats from the mainland (Angle Inlet) to most areas of the islands.  Looking ahead to open water, there are various ways to travel to the NW Angle this summer without crossing the border.  If you have the right boat and expertise, boating across is an option.  There is also the Lake of the Woods Passenger Service (charter boat shuttle to Angle).  And finally, Lake Country Air flying service, a float plane service out of Baudette and other locations.  



    • leech~~
      By leech~~
      Whats your guess? 
    • LakeofthewoodsMN
      By LakeofthewoodsMN
      On the south end... Most of the lake is still ice covered with the exception of large areas adjacent to inflowing water such as the Lighthouse Gap (Rainy River) and Morris Point Gap (Bostic Creek) areas.  Open water is expanding daily.  Anglers are allowed a limit of walleyes and saugers on the lake, but catch and release only on Four Mile Bay and the Rainy River through April 14. 
      Open water is becoming available in many of the back bays around the lake where pike spawn.  The pike season is open year round on LOW and the Rainy River.  3 fish per day, 30-40 inches must be released, one over 40" allowed.  
      On the Rainy River...   River fishing started out strong, slowed down with cold weather and the Big Fork and Little Fork Rivers spilling mud into the Rainy River and now is picking up again.  The water is clearing and water temps are on the rise.
      A 3/8 - 1/2 ounce jig is working nicely tipped with a minnow or a plastic.  Bright plastics and frozen shiners working best on jigs.  Walleyes caught in various depths down to 35 feet.  
      Some anglers trolling crankbaits with success to cover water.  Walleye season is catch and release only on Rainy River and Four Mile Bay through April 14th.
      Sturgeon fishing continues to be good with good numbers of sturgeon being caught.  Sturgeon aren't as affected by dirty water as they feed by scent.  Sturgeon catch and release season through 4/23/21.  Keep season 4/24/21 - 5/7/21, (45-50", or over 75")  Catch and release 5/8/21 - 5/15/21.  Closed 5/16/21 - 6/30/21.
      With lower current, a 3 ounce no-roll sinker combined with a sturgeon rig (18" snell of 60 lb test with a 4/0 or 5/0 circle hook) with a glob of crawlers, frozen emerald shiners or both is the ticket.  Local bait shops have rigs and bait available.
      Up at the NW Angle...  Various areas are starting to open up.  Looking ahead to open water, there are various ways to travel to the NW Angle this summer without crossing the border.  If you have the right boat and expertise, boating across is an option.  There is also the Lake of the Woods Passenger Service (charter boat shuttle to Angle).  And finally, Lake Country Air flying service, a float plane service out of Baudette and other locations.  
       


    • Mata Eveleth
      By Mata Eveleth
      Hey just trying to find a report that says like on March 20th, 2021 the water level measured at Crane Lake was.. say 18 feet 6 inches.. measured again on April 5th, 2021 and the depth is now at 17 feet six inches.. something simple. been searching around this web site.. and way to complex.. KISS   Keep it short and simple.. over and out.. same thing any web site you just want a bit of info.. and all this run around crap.. pffff.
    • JBMasterAngler
      By JBMasterAngler
      Made my long awaited return to the Rush yesterday. Never got a WI license last year, so it was good to be back! Beautiful weather! But conditions could not have been worse for trout! Water was lowest I’ve ever seen! And gin clear, without a single cloud in the sky. We were fortunate to catch the 3 we did. Way too many people out for my liking. But our gear worked, and our boots didn’t leak 😁 so it was a great day as far as I’m concerned.
       


    • LakeofthewoodsMN
      By LakeofthewoodsMN
      On the south end... Ice fishing is all finished up on the main lake.  The focus is on back bays for big pike and areas of open water on the lake for walleyes.  The pike season is open year round on LOW and the Rainy River.  3 fish per day, 30-40 inches must be released, one over 40" allowed.  
      Anglers are allowed a limit of walleyes and saugers on the lake, but catch and release only on Four Mile Bay and the Rainy River through April 14.  A limit of walleyes and saugers is a combined limit of 6 fish with up to 4 being walleyes.  Walleyes 19.5-28.0 inches must be released with one allowed over 28 inches.  The walleye season runs through April 14th and starts up again May 15th for the MN Fishing Opener.
      On the Rainy River...   Five boat ramps are open on the Rainy River and there are 42 miles of open water for fishing.  Nelson Park in Birchdale, Frontier, Vidas (near Clementson), Timbermill Park in Baudette and the Wheeler's Point access at the mouth of the river 12 miles north of Baudette are all open.  
      River fishing has started out strong.  Good numbers of walleyes are being caught by some with trophy fish in the mix.  A 3/8 - 1/2 ounce jig is working nicely tipped with a minnow or a plastic.  Walleye season is catch and release only on Rainy River and Four Mile Bay through April 14th.
      Sturgeon fishing continues to be excellent with big numbers of sturgeon being caught.  Sturgeon catch and release season through 4/23/21.  Keep season 4/24/21 - 5/7/21, (45-50", or over 75")  Catch and release 5/8/21 - 5/15/21.
      With lower current, a 3 ounce no-roll sinker combined with a sturgeon rig (18" snell of 60 lb test with a 4/0 or 5/0 circle hook) with a glob of crawlers, frozen emerald shiners or both is the ticket.  Local bait shops have rigs available.
      Up at the NW Angle...  Looking ahead to open water, there are various ways to travel to the NW Angle this summer without crossing the border.  If you have the right boat and expertise, boating across is an option.  There is also the Lake of the Woods Passenger Service (charter boat shuttle to Angle).  And finally, Lake Country Air flying service, a float plane service out of Baudette and other locations.  
       


    • eyeguy 54
      By eyeguy 54
      White suckers are on the move in some of the local rivers. Night crawler on a #6 hook and a 1/4 oz slip sinker brought many to shore the last two days. Crazy light biters. 





  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • BrianF
      Due to all the the weeds, I’ve heard the name ‘Garbage Bay’ given to the bay just West of Niles Point - which bay actually has a name, Laura Bay - but I’ve not heard of Garbage Point.  Maybe it’s associated with Garbage Bay?  Dunno for sure...
    • Skibo
      Skunked - I've always been Lowrance.  A friend suggested buying one smaller Humminbird to connect to the Minnkota.  I did just that with a 9" and have since upgraded to a 12", and have been very happy with the setup.  I prefer the Lowrance/Navionics for navigation, and the Humminbird with their Side Imaging for fishing.
    • SkunkedAgain
      That's a beautiful part of the lake. Great pictures.   Forgive my ignorance as this is more of a map question. Is "Garbage Point" right next to Niles Point? I've heard the name over the years and believe that it is right around there on the north side.
    • SkunkedAgain
      I don't remember what kind of survey they did in the fall, but whatever it was showed very favorable walleye populations on Vermilion.   I did a quick search, and they were netted not shocked out of the water:  http://timberjay.com/stories/walleye-boom-time,17521
    • DonkeyHodey
      You got it, bro!   The secret spot is not so secret...    Usually the beach is empty in April but it wasn't this past weekend (we planned to try Sun before lunch and there was no room, so we took early lunch, came back and thankfully then the prime beach spot was open!  YES!)   The high water is one thing;  there's at least enough standing room and I could barely fit a folding chair.  (but action was hot--we weren't sitting much at all!) The bigger issue was casting room.  80% of the time I spent fishing and 20% untangling line from the brush/trees.  🤣
    • BrianF
      East end of Waconda Bay.  Our dock points N towards Niles Point, which you can see in the background there.  Been eight years now since we bought; every year better than the last.   
    • gunner55
      Still there today, 2 boats in the water along with at least 2 vehicles. Usually they're done in 2-3 days so I'm not sure if the weather delayed them or if since it didn't happen last season they are taking more.
    • Sorgy
      Nice view, Where on the lake is that?
    • FishinCT
      I assume they also didn’t do the fall electrofishing survey to assess young of the year walleye?
    • Rick G
      Nice job @DonkeyHodey   The old "secret" spot produces again😏  Hard time finding a place to stand with the high water?  
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