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Spearing Machine

2017-2018 Vermilion Ice Conditions and Fishing Reports

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JerkinLips
On 12/24/2017 at 9:12 AM, Wanderer said:

@JerkinLips

Thats pretty cool to have a break from work like that and fishable ice.  You have made the most of it.  What’s after the work stint?  Walleyes or lakers?

Wanderer - after next week's trip I plan on watching the Viking's playoff run (hopefully to the Super Bowl).  Will also take in the trout pond opener in the cities.  I don't fish lakers until March when walleye season is over.  I'm sure I will get in a few more weekends of walleye fishing.  It has been a great season with the good early ice, and a lot of vacation to use before the end of the year.

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Cliff Wagenbach

I drove my F-250 out to my fish house today. No problems encountered!

Still a good walleye bite despite the cold front.

Managed to ice 8 walleyes and 3 jumbo perch, kept 4 nice eyes and the perch. Missed at least 8 other bites that I had hooked and lost.

Almost all bites were on the rattle reel using rainbows or pike suckers.

Cliff

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Salo Island Family

Hoping to head out of Stuntz bay and fish near the sisters on Sunday.   Driving an F150 loaded with beef jerky and twizzlers.   Ha!

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Cliff Wagenbach

Still a good bite out there again this afternoon!

Got these fish plus released a 21" and a half dozen other smaller walleyes in about 3 hours.

All were caught on rattle reels with pike suckers and rainbow minnows.

 

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20171227_154935_Burst01.jpg

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trumy

Cliff did all this cold weather make a bunch of ice got abuddy that wants to put his 16 ft icecastle out from McKinley park but been little gun shy till now wasn't sure of the ice condition pulls it with f 250 thanks for any info you may have

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Cliff Wagenbach

Trumy,

I saw a full size truck with a plow pull a 16' ice castle out from McKinley to Birch Island today! He even drove over a pressure ridge! Crazy!! But he made it!

Cliff

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BRULEDRIFTER

Cliff, where is said pressure ridge? Heading out that way on Friday on snowmobile. Thanks!

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Cliff Wagenbach

BD,

The ridge runs from the West end of Ely Island West towards Cherry Island. Not bad for a snowmobile or 4 wheeler in most areas of it. Just need to watch out for a few areas that are 2 or 3 foot high.

Lots of Ridges on the lake already so keep an eye out for them.

Cliff

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trumy

Thanks cliff kinda thinking may have to check it out on wheelers and sleds first as we don' have a death wish don' t like playing around with pressure ridges bad thingshappen  to fast

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fishingdad

How Thick Is the ice where there is truck traffic ? 

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JV Ham Lake

Do I need to worry about pressure ridges in Daisy Bay?  We’re new to ice fishing on Vermilion.  Planning to take a 4 wheeler from Grubens to Daisy Island Friday.

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VermilionGold

JV, rode all around Daisy two weeks ago and didn’t encounter any obstacles.  The ice was heaved up along the north shoreline a little, there was 11” of good ice at that point.  We have had our cabin since 2013 and don’t recall ever having any in Daisy bay, mostly out in Big bay.  We’ll be up for NYE this weekend as well, going to be some cold snowmobiling.

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Brett Kivela

Looking at going out of moc pt heading towards the portage, heard of a few pressure ridges around St. Paul an St. Mary's island. Anyone come across these yet? 

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Cliff Wagenbach

FD,

14 inches of ice where I have been driving a couple of days ago.

Cliff

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ohfisher

Hi Jerkin Lips,

Enjoyed meeting you today! Despite what you told us, I guess we don't have the magic touch yet.  One of our sons managed to catch a 16" walleye and an eelpout (exciting as we had never seen one before). The rest of us were shut out, but there's always tomorrow! 

Good luck the rest of the season.

Cindy

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Bigquad

Brett,

Ben and I are going out on Vermilion Monday.  You off and if so want to meet up? 

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JerkinLips

Hello ohfisher - it was nice meeting you also.  Sorry I didn't have more time to visit but I was anxious to start fishing after a late start due to looking for my missing wallet (thought I had left it at Walmart the night before, but found it had fallen in one of my bags).

Had good luck fishing Thursday, catching 10 walleyes in 6 hours fishing before quitting after getting my limit of eaters.  Also caught the 25" slotter shown in the picture.  Friday-Saturday was another story as I caught only 5 walleyes, including a 23".  I think that the reason the action dropped so suddenly was the increased vehicle and wheel house traffic in the area.  Many trucks were plowing roads and around their houses, and other were pulling houses out.  The good fishing lasted longer that I expected, but when I come up again in 3 weeks, I may have to venture away from traffic in my portable.

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Salo Island Family

Happy New Year Everyone!

Thinking of going out today out of Stuntz. Anyone know of any known issues or think I should be giving it more time before driving out with the F150?

Thank You.

Marc Plaisted

Edited by Salo Island Family

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Cliff Wagenbach

SHOULD NOT BE A PROBLEM GETTING TO YOUR ISLAND NOW WITH YOUR f-150.

CLIFF

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JerkinLips

Nice looking fish.  Makes me wish I was going up again before two more weeks off.

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OhioVike

Has anyone traveled through the Oak Narrows yet?  The west end entrance didn't look very safe right after Christmas but I didn't have time to check it out.

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jim curlee

Headin up tomorrow, looks like the weather will finally give us a break.

I need to do some fishin! LOL

Any tips, for walleye fishin, depth, bottom composition, bait, techniques, flats, drop-off's, etc.?

Thanks

Jim

 

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Cliff Wagenbach

Walleyes are being caught in depths from 14' to 35'.

Shallow fish are biting best in the early am and late pm.

22' to 36' depths can bite at any time, you just have to be there when they turn on! I have had my best luck from 9:00am to 1:00pm.

Dead sticks with pike suckers or rainbows have been my best bait.

Small jigs with crappie minnows or a minnow head. I have been getting more fish to come in if I jig 2.5' to 3' off of the bottom.

Cliff

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jim curlee

Cliff:

As always a very informative post.

Thanks

Jim

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Kettle
      Drove past the west side of Mille Lacs today. Large areas of ice with a few open areas and even a boat fishing, looks like they busted ice at the Garrison access to get out. Saw a handful of goldeneye and mergansers but that was it
    • Sculpin
      The addition of beads really adds something,  I go to the fabric store in St Cloud and buy glass beads, and use them above hooks on my deadsticks. I believe glass is better, they are brighter in color, more reflective, you can find more colors and sizes. Plus they click clack a little bit when you jig. 
    • BRULEDRIFTER
      I personally would like to see the smallie wiped off the map in this lake (and all laker lakes). They aren't native and I assume they are detrimental to laker populations.  I can only imagine what they do to laker fry and yoy on those rocks and reefs.  It seems as the laker population declined on W. Bearskin, the smallies have exploded.  Not sure if that's because the SM have more food to work with with less lakers, or because the lake trout are the smallies food. I''ll be curious to see how the DNR responds to that question I asked, if they respond at all.  
    • BRULEDRIFTER
      Thanks for the heads up on this!  I just sent them the following email.    Good afternoon,    I am curious if potentially implementing a slot limit, or maximum size regulation on lake trout is being considered in this management plan?   As an avid and passionate lake trout angler for over 15 years, I have noticed that over the last number of years lake trout angling has greatly increased in popularity, and with that, the overall quality and quantity of the fish populations have significantly decreased (at least in my experiences).  Stocking them has long been discontinued and it seems the vast majority of anglers keep fish of any size. In fact, it seems in the world of lake trout, the bigger the better. It seems that education about how fragile these fish are is just not readily available for people. There is some stuff out there if one were to dig deep enough, and a few of the more popular fishing shows are doing some education, but overall, it seems to be lacking because walleye are king.   Personally, I practice and promote selective harvest with lakers. My personal slot (and one I would love to see here in all MN Inland waters) is anything less than 17" and and greater than 25" go back in the lake ( so, a 2 fish total bag limit, 17-25", with 1 fish allowed over 32"). It would also be nice to see more strict limits put in place on the most popular lake trout fisheries, but a statewide slot would be a great place to start.    I have felt for quite a long time (as I've seen their popularity grow, and stocking discontinue) that some additional protection for these fish was greatly needed. There are Esox groups, bass groups, walleye groups, stream trout/steelhead groups and even catfish and sturgeon groups out there promoting and cheer leading for those fish species, but nothing out there for the laker.   I would love to see the MN DNR finally take some steps to help protect what we have left of lake trout fisheries while we still have them.     So, in summary,    Are there any additional protections (slots, limits, etc) for lake trout being included in this new management plan?   Has there been any research done on how smallmouth bass are impacting lake trout populations?  And if so, are they impacting them?    If smallies are having an impact on lakers, can there be anything done, aside from aggressive harvest of smallmouth to protect laker populations?       Thank you very much for your time!   Sincerely,    An Extremely Passionate Lake Trout Angler
    • Sculpin
      There are a few porty's starting to show up in the bays on the south side, although there is still a good deal of open water on the main lake. There were two houses out on Waukon bay yesterday, and an ATV and a small hard side spear shack in Cove bay, and one house in Isle Bay.  I would imagine by the weekend, there will be significant foot traffic in the bays. Bear in mind you can't fish walleyes until Dec. 1st, but you can be perchin or pike fishing and, and still be catching those pesky "incidental" fish. Good luck, and use extreme caution 
    • AlwaysFishing23
      Tuned up custom inferno series in UL for panfish and the M for walleyes. Inline reels like the CGI or decent for the Ul. And a okuma ceymar c10 or Shimano Sienna 1000 FE for the M. 
    • shaky legs2
      I was back on the ice a week after hip replacement surgery.  My wife wasn’t too happy and threatened to tell the surgeon but I went anyway.  After I graduated from the walker to a cane I decided one morning to take a walk and visit some of Kelly’s customers.  Every house I went to nobody would talk to me.  I was just trying to be sociable and a good neighbor.  When I got back Doc asked me how it went.  I said we had a bunch of rufusses for neighbors that were unsociable and nobody would talk to me.  Doc said, “Don’t you remember rule #1?” “ Kelly has them posted in all his houses”.  “Don’t talk to strangers!”  😀😀😀
    • Naturboy
      I like taking the Power Bait maggots and threading onto my pan fish jigs the same way. gives a soft tasty body.
    • shaky legs2
      God, I miss those times Kelly.  You are a great friend and Doc and I commented so many times how fortunate we were that you took us under your wing.  You probably felt sorry for us and thought we were harmless.  I remember your first year with the press-board houses that you later painted sky blue so they would blend into the horizon, that fire engine red truck you had, sneaky snaky roads with a gatekeeper house smack in the middle, that sneaky off-shoot road right off the Hillman road on the south side of the pressure ridge.  That area witnessed the hottest crappie bite I have ever seen and it went on for months and the crappie Highway.  Doc is reading this right now and chuckling.  Take care my friend, stay healthy and give Freddy a hug from Shaky.
    • shaky legs2
      Sorry to hear this.  Get well Cookie.