Howdy and thanks for taking the time to give some advice. My family's renting a houseboat from Ebel's the 2nd week of June and would appreciate some advice on specific locations for northern pike/smallmouth bass on the Eastern end of Lake Kabetogama. We'll have a 12 foot motorized boat with us so moving around won't be a problem. Want to focus on the Eastern end of the lake to minimize a long haul with the houseboat.
Any advice on specific bays, islands, or points would be appreciated!
Wondering if any of you ever fish the inland lakes throughout Voyageurs and if so which ones? I have fished the Locator chain, Ek and Net lakes. My favorite of those three is definitely Locator. Seems to have a lot of northern and I also caught a good sized largemouth. Had a rough day on Ek. Was fishing with light tackle because I’ve been told it’s a good crappie lake and was broken off once otherwise nothing. One small pike on Net. This is a picture of the bass from Locator.
Voyageur Park Lodge on Lake Kabetogama recently purchased brand new Ice Trek brand fish houses to rent on Lake Kabetogama. The houses themselves are all aluminum with spray foam insulation, clean, warm and comfortable! If your looking for something different from the usual LOW, Red experience check us out. These are day use houses only and we will offer lodging at Voyageur Park Lodge. We will only have one lodging unit open in the winter, so fishing parties will be the only guests at the resort, so lots of privacy and no other parties around. Fish houses will be private out on the ice also!
We are excited to be the only angling houses on Lake Kabetogama! If your looking for something different let us know!
Voyageur Park Lodge (Reef Runner Ice houses)
Good opening weekend...great weather for opener and more boats than normal I would say. Fishing was good, not great. I'm sure others have differing opinions, but for us we found larger walleyes in 6-12 feet when pitching jigs. You had to put up with the large number of small northern that must have been hungry! Most of our walleyes came by way of a jig and minnow, in 30-35 ft of water...most of these 9-13" and went back, but every 4-5 fish was keepable and a fair number of sauger's were in the mix. Problem was you could catch 3-5 fish in a spot and then you needed to move. So, lots of boats running all day Saturday. Saturday night/evening the bite improved and keeper fish were coming from 22-28' of water, again with a jig and minnow for us. Sunday sunny and beautiful day to be on the water! Similar patterns with the evening bite producing most of our keepers that day.
As far as scenery, you simply can't beat this area. Kabetogama, Namakan, Ash River, and Crane lake is truly beautiful and the fishing is just bonus. Listening to other fisherman, it seems the slot is frustrating some people...again lots of small fish (future fish) and many 20-22" walleyes but not many trophy's and eaters were tough to find. All and all, great opener again on Kabetogama, hope everyone else had fun and a safe opening weekend. Happy to talk fishing on Kabetogama, enjoy the season...
I realize that walleye is kind up there, but was hoping there were some smallie fishermen here on the board that could give me some advice on the fall smallmouth fishing on Namakan, Sand Point and Crane. I've been coming up there for many years to fish for smallies in the springtime but have never tried it there in the Fall. Was thinking that I may try my hand at some fall smallmouth up there while they're trying to fatten up for the winter.
Right now I am planning on coming up at the end of September. I'm hoping to find the fish in less than 20 feet of water. Jigs, tubes, jerkbaits and topwater is what I'm hoping they will be biting on. I know water temperature plays a huge role in the fish moving back shallow to feed so I'm hoping my timing is right. Do you folks think it's worth the trouble around that time. I really don't feel like hauling my boat 1,100 miles (I live in Kentucky) if I'm gonna be fishing the dead sea. Would Rainy Lake be a better choice?
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
Stayed on the west side last week. Perfect weather for most of the week. Light winds, cool mornings and 70-80 during the day. Plenty of sunshine - no rain to speak of.
Of the ~20 Walleye we caught, 60% of them were in the 10" to 14" range. Everything else was 22" to 26". Trolled plugs but mostly fished spinners slow w/ Crawler and Leeches.
Fished mostly deep reefs all over the main basins. Kept moving. Biggest take away was a large scale bug hatch going on (not mayflies) and the largest small perch population I've ever witnessed. Both of these lit of the electronics with pure clouds... 4-6" perch literally everywhere. Pretty amazing to be honest.
Every fish was very healthy...stuffed full. Gonna be fun in a few years. Also caught several nice Bluegill, Small and Largemouth Bass and a few Pike. All larger than past years. 1 50" musky stopped by to say high in calm weather middle of the day.
Did make it to the East side a few days with little success but the timing of the day didn't help. Definitely marked plenty of fish off deep reefs in 16-30 mainly in Big Bag. No bug hatch there and not near the bait fish population.
If I was there this week, I would fish reefs near deepest water adjacent to defined points. That's my 2 cents.
The most interesting thing I've seen on the lake is loons flocking up to fly south. Saw this on Norwegian Bay October 9, 2018. There had to be at least 200 of them, including some clearly too young to make the trip.
I've been having good luck with lead core as well. I use Suffix 832, with line counter reels. Each color is 30 feet of line. As a rule of thumb, every 1 foot of depth requires 5 feet of line, so if you are fishing at 30' FOW you would let out 150' of line, or 5 colors. Trolling speed affects how deep your crank is running as well (slower is deeper). I usually run between 2.2 and 2.5 mph. As a check, you can keep letting out line until your crank starts bumping bottom and then reel up 10' of line.
I hear ya on the difficulties fishing any lobe of Whitefish on the weekends! Just have to get up and be done before 10am or go back out after 6pm and the lake settles a little. We trolled "lower" WF on Thursday evening and only caught 1 northern. Didn't appear to have as thick of a gathering of fish...
We went back out on Saturday morning to try our luck on Whitefish for Whitefish and in 2 hours caught 1 3.5lb'er and missed a few bites. Wow can they be fun to pull out of 50-70 ft of water. We use jigging raps but wow do whitefish bit lightly but put up a good fight...and there are plenty of them on the big lakes!!! Good fish on the smoker too!!
I sent fish them suspended in the basin areas. Do get a few any off bottom near weed edges and suspending near flats that drop sharply. Like Bobt I have had good results trolling cranks over and around weeds. Also, midlake humps with spinner rigs/crawler or jigging raps can be very good.
Panfish can be awesome. However I had trouble pinning down many nice ones today. So even they are not a guarantee. Maybe I will have a better report soon as I will be up through Thursday evening.