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JerkinLips

10 inches of ice in a new location today. Lots of wheelers and snowmobiles running around. A couple of good sized wheel houses were pulled out by Birch Island. A small pickup and SUV were parked by each. Brave people. Good bite from 8 to 12 then only a handful of bites in the afternoon. Chubs still seem better than rainbows. 25 fow. Going to get even busier on the lake this weekend. Tomorrow is my last day until the Monday after Christmas. Good luck if you venture out and be careful.  

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Pretty slow walleye weekend for us around Moccasin Point area compared to what we usually do. Managed to put together a fish fry and bring a couple home but had to settle for 14" - 15" to get them. Di

Finally got out fishing at McKinley Park today. Missed the morning bite but still got plenty of bites up until 3pm when they shut off. Catching was another story. They were biting nice and solid but m

I just returned home from a sweltering 4 day trip on Vermilion. In all of the years that I have fished Lake Vermilion, I don't ever remember it being so hot for so long. We had no top on our boat and

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So great to hear quality ice is forming on LV.  Hopefully we won't have to fight slush like we did last year.  Heading up between Christmas and NewYear.  Can't wait!

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Wanderer
On 12/19/2020 at 12:09 AM, JerkinLips said:

Talked to someone at McKinley Park Wednesday and they said they were catching a lot of tullibee.  They said they were catching them near the bottom using medium size minnows on walleye-sized hooks.  Don't know why I haven't caught any this year, and only caught 2 all last winter.

 

Interesting sighting at McKinley Park this afternoon as I was leaving the lake.  This older Ski-Doo was ready to tow a canoe.  Also saw a power auger sitting outside an empty truck so somebody must have been having equipment problems.

 

Fair bite from 8:30-11:00 today with the pictured 26½" coming at the end of the bite.  Bite picked up again at 2:00 but I had decided to leave then when the snow ended.  Thought the roads would be better then but had freezing rain from Soudan to Cotton.  3 vehicles in the ditch including one car backwards and tipped on its side between the Y-store and Black Bear, and a pickup-plow backed way into the ditch just past Eveleth.  Glad to make it safely home, but 45 minutes later.

 

Only got 2 inches of very light snow in Soudan today so it shouldn't cause problems to the ice.  The water in my fishing holes stayed almost an inch below the top of the ice so there is not much weight on the ice now.  As long as we don't get a lot of snow before next week's cold snap, the ice should be ideal.  Someone drove a full-sized pickup truck out of the bay to a group of wheel houses.  Will probably see a lot more this weekend.  Good luck fishing and be safe.

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Your long arm pics are always the opposite of everyone else’s! 😁

 

Thanks for all your reports!  It’s nice to be able to follow along with developing ice season, even for the area.  I made a decision yesterday that I want to head to my place in Ely for the New Year weekend and your reports give me some level of confidence how the ice will be.

 

Good luck out there this year!

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StateofHockey

Ice update, snowmobiles this weekend on East side from Frazer to Trout portage and big bay from Birch pt to Mc Kinley park and Everett bay. Ice seemed consistent 10". Some large pressure ridges in big bay but easy enough to find safe crossings in daylight. Only open water I saw was at Moc pt so detour around Swanson island. Did not get over to oak narrows but would always advise caution there.

Cold weather for Christmas eve so maybe the Penguins will stake the lake next weekend.

 

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West side ice seems a little behind that on the east.  We’ve not measured any 10” of ice.  We’ve found 8” to 9” with some variable spots which were even less.  This is from Wake Em Up Narrows all the way to Wolf Bay.  Our fishing had been spotty.  Lots of walleyes but nothing of size.  

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Fished last weekend around Moccasin point.  No walleye bites only had a couple of northerns or muskies bite me off.  10" of ice and easy to get around on the ATV.  Might need the snowmobile next time up.

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JV Ham Lake

Hey we're thinking aboutwalking from Birch Point to Daisy Island next weekend.  Anyone know if sleds have been going through this area?  We want to be careful in the narrow spot between the point and the island.

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StateofHockey

Ice update, thanks to the penguins the east side lake trails are now staked. Significant slush along many shorelines for first 50 yards. Better farther out but many grey areas where water pushed up along  cracks. Trail stakes through Moc pt but lots of slush so recommend going north around Swanson island instead. Measuring 12" ice out on the lake in Moc pt area.

Whitefish biting better then walleyes for me

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JerkinLips

Fished from 10am to 6pm today and did not catch a fish. Had one bite on a rainbow that I lost half way up. Marked a few but couldn't get them to bite. May have to try pike suckers tomorrow. 14.5 inches of ice and about half inch of water came on the ice when drilling holes. Didn't run into any slush out of McKinley Park.

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Wanderer
10 hours ago, JerkinLips said:

Fished from 10am to 6pm today and did not catch a fish. Had one bite on a rainbow that I lost half way up. Marked a few but couldn't get them to bite. May have to try pike suckers tomorrow. 14.5 inches of ice and about half inch of water came on the ice when drilling holes. Didn't run into any slush out of McKinley Park.


How is the snow load?  Curious if I do get up to Ely this weekend if I can walk/pull easily or if I’ll be challenging a heart attack without my wheeler.  I’m in decent enough shape so really just worried about deeper powder and slush.

 

Thanks

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4 hours ago, Wanderer said:


How is the snow load?  Curious if I do get up to Ely this weekend if I can walk/pull easily or if I’ll be challenging a heart attack without my wheeler.  I’m in decent enough shape so really just worried about deeper powder and slush.

 

Thanks

Wanderer, My daughter is up at the cabin now and it looks to be about 3-4" on the ice where it is not slushy.  Looking to get 1-3 tonight.

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SkunkedAgain

The west end is similar. There are patches of slush but mostly in good shape. Wakemup seemed to be in better shape than Head-O-Lakes. Black Bay was 50/50 on slush, worse than most places I went.

 

....to the guy ice fishing along the staked trail in HeadOLakes, I would strongly advise against putting your tipups directly in the middle of the west-bound snowmobile trail. I almost ran them over but was able to split the two at the last second. Maybe he didn't know why those fancy plastic stakes were placed in the lake!

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james_walleye

What a beautiful long weekend up north. Fishing was alright. I never expect to much when I've fishing vermilion. Every morning we were able to get 3-4 eaters. Nice quality fish. Mostly 16-18" fish. Nothing midday for us and late afternoons were hit and miss. First afternoon we caught a few nice eaters. Next 2 were slow for us. We found our best luck in 25-30 feet. Fatheads were better than rainbows and shiners. Pretty much an even mix on spoons and set lines. We did see more people fishing outside the McKinley area than ever before but we punched holes in pretty good areas that are completely untouched. I'm kind of curious how people do out of McKinley? We just take our sleds out from near bayview. 

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StillFishin'

How big were the fatheads!

 

Happy New Year to all!

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JerkinLips
12 hours ago, james_walleye said:

I'm kind of curious how people do out of McKinley? We just take our sleds out from near bayview.

Most people fish out of from McKinley Park because of convenient access.  Fishing can be very good there, especially early in the ice season.  It is much worse when there is a lot of traffic around.  Now that I am retired, I will only fish Vermilion on week days, and avoid holidays after my experience last week (New Years crowd).

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Influenza

Heading up this weekend out of McK Park to Ely with 1.5T of finishing boards.  Tip Ups out, boards up, and cold drinks. Can’t wait!

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SkunkedAgain

The crowds everywhere have been insane. I am in favor of youth sports coming back online, just so that most of the bandwagon outdoors folks have something else to occupy their time and leave the lakes to us! However, I've heard that the resorts generally did pretty well this year on Vermilion so am happy if that is true. There is always a silver lining to every situation!

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mbeyer

Love the knife in the fish pic.....I have one the same. My favorite....

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FishinFreak17

My son and I are heading  up to Vermilion Thursday morning and plan on sleeping out in the insulated tent.  First time up this winter, should I bring the snowmobile or the Side by side? I did see a plowed road, but did not see how far out it went, could just trailer all the gear out in the Highlander.  Snow load issues? Night bite?.  Going out of McKinley, any advice welcomed. Thanks

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BrianF

Jim Curlee, I’m considering trading-in my Yamaha Venture for a Skandic.  How does it perform in the deep snow and slush?  Anything you’d do differently?  I wanna make this my last snow machine purchase. 

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Bbobber
4 hours ago, FishinFreak17 said:

My son and I are heading  up to Vermilion Thursday morning and plan on sleeping out in the insulated tent.  First time up this winter, should I bring the snowmobile or the Side by side? I did see a plowed road, but did not see how far out it went, could just trailer all the gear out in the Highlander.  Snow load issues? Night bite?.  Going out of McKinley, any advice welcomed. Thanks

You should bring your snowmobiles. There is a lot of slush and ruts that have froze over on the west end. 

 

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FishinFreak17

Bobber, thanks for the reply!

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