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Spring/Upper Prior


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My confidence is SHOT! Are people catching anything? I have tried all hours of the day and night. Shallow and out to 27 feet.

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Overheard at the baitshop by prior that eyes & crappie are being caught by what looked to be the south side of an island on Tue south side of prior. But he could have been giving a general typical area just to tell te guys "something ". From what I saw was the east bays were pretty packed with people..

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I'm on lower prior and the fishing all around us has slowed quite a bit from the early season. I have some retired neighbors that fish every day and they report the same thing. Best bite is around sunset plus or minus an hour in about 18' to 21' of water for both crappies and sunfish. Best bait has been Eurolarvae. Usually the fishing really picks up again in March after the permanents are pulled and pressure drops off.

Heard reports and saw pic of one northern speared around 9 lbs and a second reported at 42". I have personally seen a 14 lb out of Prior again speared. I'm amazed a fish gets to that size in a heavily fished metro lake.

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id be more impressed if it was caught on a hook and line but like most said the fishing has sucked the only thing I caught was my hub frozen to the lake after banking with auger snow

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A couple winters ago my brother landed a 18lb pike on a tip up on Prior. A lot of water for a pike to grow big in the lake. When he lived in Prior Lake he used to catch quite a few pike ranging from 5-20 pounds open water fishing.

Few years ago did really well with the 14in eyes but last 4-5 years it's been tough to get a limit.

Still nice panfish if you can find them...

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • leech~~
      Have you ever read the history of SPAM! It's very interesting! 🤭
    • leech~~
      Welcome to the forum and thanks for the ice report. I'm sure more reports on other lake will start coming in as more folks brave the ice. 
    • LakeofthewoodsMN
      On the south end... It is ice fishing time!  Some resorts (not all) have pulled out fish houses and it is game on.  Some ice trails are marked and open.  Check weight limits on each ice road as conditions can vary. Resorts who have fish houses on the ice will typically transport you out to their houses using light ice rigs for convenience and safety.   As we often say, ice conditions vary greatly on Lake of the Woods.  Some resorts have trails marked across Four Mile Bay out to fishing areas in front of Pine Island on the big lake.  Some resorts are not quite open as the ice where they go out still needs some time to thicken up.   Watch your favorite resort / outfitter social media pages for up to date info.   Work through resorts and outfitters on the ice, stay on the marked trails for safety, please don't exceed weight limits and drive slowly on the ice. Anticipation is high.  The early ice bite is normally very good!   Please remember to Keep It Clean, pick up everything around you and secure your garbage. On the Rainy River...   The Rainy River is frozen up.  Some locals who know the river have been checking ice and ice fishing with some walleyes and saugers in the mix.  As ice thickens, more areas will become accessible. Ice conditions vary and on the river there is current, so much like the lake, we encourage visitors to work through a resort or outfitter for safety.   Up at the NW Angle... Resorts have been monitoring ice conditions and starting to stake trails.  They are not ice fishing yet, but the ice is looking good and some guides scouting for fish give the thumbs up.  Stay in touch with your favorite NW Angle resort for further info.   Driving through Canada to reach the Angle no longer requires COVID vaccinations or the use of the ArriveCan App (which is optional).   For those looking to access the Angle while avoiding customs, there are few options.   1.  When ice conditions allow, the snowmobile trail will be groomed and staked from the south shore up to the Angle. 2.  The Lake of the Woods Passenger service provides round trip bombardier service across the lake.   3.  Lake Country Air provides air service to both the south end and NW Angle.    
    • thefishingpublic
      Any update on ice fishing? Was out on Green yesterday and there was about 5" of ice from the launch. Didnt push it too far. Really slow fishing.    Anyone fished Ann lake in the past year? Update? 
    • Coleman
      You're not fishing too far from home I see.  I was going to pop a couple holes on Saturday to check the status, I'm on the other side of the point.  Did you mark any fish on those bumps?  
    • smurfy
      no friggin way i'd let them worthless friggin pelicans do that. i'd make me a life size leech lookin scarecrow!!!!!!!!!!!🤣🤭   just joshing ya leech!!!!!!!!!!🤗 but i seriously wouldnt allow that  to happen!!!!!!!!
    • Mike89
      seem then birds do that too!!!   it is interesting the way they herd the fish and swoop in on them...  
    • smurfy
      yep, like leech said, best asking and going through a resort on the lake. i dont know anyone that would rent out there own personal house to someone else.   google Winnibigoshish resorts you'll get a bunch. i personally like highbanks!!!!!!!
    • leech~~
      Welcome to the forum.  Those are some pretty specific questions that are best answered by the resorts on the lakes that rent houses. Let us know if you find any good deals! 👍
    • gimruis
      I have a story about Elk Lake.  Last spring after ice out, I was crappie fishing out there in one of those shallow back water areas that hold dozens of puny crappies.  I caught over 100 in a couple hours.  I went back a week later, and one of the land owners came down to his dock and told me that a couple days earlier, a flock of pelicans was in there gulping up crappies as fast as they could.  Literally.  He said they would herd them into a corner and then other ones would swoop in with their gaping mouths/beaks and suck em down like a vacuum.  They did this for 2 days straight until there didn't appear to be any crappies left in there.   He said he considered putting a halt to it because they are gluttons and he could tell it was going to make a sizable dent in the crappie population, but he let it go because it was just "part of nature."  Needless to say, when I was back there fishing the second time, I didn't catch a single crappie and I had caught over 100 a week earlier.
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