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Just tryen to find out what others find to be the best bait. Casting plugs or live bait, what have you been using scoot or should I say Cuz. I'll let you know when the pigs start hitting, I'd like to take you out since we missed them last year. Kolby is fishing the Cats Incredible with me this year and he can't wait to get on the river.

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Hey Cuz,

This time of year I've primarily used three types of rigs- slip rig 2-3 foot snell (either a floater or a straight hook), jig, and crank.
It's minnow time on the Red so I use both large fatheads and/or mid-sized suckers. One trick that I've found to be really helpful is a single hook stinger rig, particularly when I'm using a sucker. This helps the hook-up rate given the longer bait.
I'll probably use a jig and minnow 3/4 of the time now- not because I think it'll outfish the other presentations 3/4 of the time, but because it's my favorite way to fish.
One tip- using a floating jighead vs. a straight hook may seem like a small thing, but I've found large differences in productivity with one vs. the other on some days. I've not figured out a patern for which one will work on any given day, but I mix it up to see what works better when I'm on the water.
I've used cranks the least on the Red, but Backwater Eddy insists that they are a hot ticket quite often. That's enough for me to concede that they are effective. I have caught some fish using cranks, just not a lot because I'm too **** cheap to lose $6.00 cranks very often!
Hope to see you on the water soon,

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I know what you mean about losing cranks. I was down that a couple of weeks ago and I lost two in the rocks. I worked and works the second one but couldn't get it, so I broke it of. After that I put on a jig, after casing and working the for about ten minutes guess what I seen float up to the surface. Yup a crank, I worked and worked to hook up but never got it before it slipped under the ice down stream. AAAAHHHH three ways and floaters from here on out. Good luck let me know when you get into them I will do the same.

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Don't aim for the middle of the river with cranks from shore, your just asking for it then.

Cranks work best in areas where the walleye are hunting and not holding tight. This time of year they try to avoid strong currents and most often hang tight to shore or structure near shore.

Faster the flow the tighter to shore they go. You will loose less by casting parallel to shore, and catch more fish. If and when you do hand up reel up to the snag and try pulling it free from the opposite side of the lure travel. Most will come free if you work them from a different direction and avoid jerking them into the snag you found.

Don't expect to keep many cranks for your box if you choose 6-8 pound test for casting in tough areas. Use FireLine (10/30 or 8-15) and you will retrieve more crank baits. The walleye and pike won't care what color the line is; they see the plug not the line.

Slow and easy & never pull into a snag, always pull away from them. Same deal with jigs, the center of the river is too darn fast in cold water, keep them close.

These tips will save you time, cash, and produce more fish.

Backwater Eddy..><,sUMo,>

Backwater Guiding
"Ed on the RED"
[email protected]

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • LakeofthewoodsMN
      On the south end...   Ice fishing continues strong and it is still winter on the border.    Overnight temps in the teens and twenties are maintaining ice nicely.  Fishing continues to be excellent.  It has been an incredible year for walleyes and saugers with both numbers and size.     Resort fish houses and sleeper fish houses are available.  Some ice roads are allowing pickup trucks pulling wheelhouses as well.  Check with each individual ice road for specific limits.   As always, and certainly this year, it is important to stay on the resort ice roads.  It is tempting to go off on your own as there isn't much snow, but that is a risky move any time of the year.  Resorts and outfitters keep their roads on the best ice and monitor it numerous times per day.   Lake of the Woods enjoys an extended ice fishing season each year.  Fish houses are allowed on the ice through March 31st, the walleye / sauger season goes through April 14th and the pike season never ends.   The majority of ice fishing for walleyes and saugers is taking place in 24 - 34 feet of water.  Jigging one line and using a live minnow on the second line is the way to go.   Pike anglers fishing shallower shoreline breaks and reporting good activity and big fish.  Pike activity will only increase as we approach the month of March.  Arming your spread with a mixture of live and dead baits will allow you to quickly figure out what the pike wants that day. Alewife, smelt, herring, numerous sizes of live suckers, or even large shiners work well. On the Rainy River...  Most ice fishing is taking place on the lake.  There are a couple of resorts that ice fish on the Rainy River.  Know ice conditions or work through a resort or outfitter for safety.    The river is open east of Birchdale.  Those who enjoy the spring open water season on the river are optimistic the river will open early.  Is your boat and fishing gear ready when it does? Up at the NW Angle...   Another very good week of ice fishing up at the Angle.  Walleyes, saugers, jumbo perch, eelpout, pike and some big crappies in the mix.   Water conditions are clearer this winter compared to most.  For that reason, the morning and evening bites have been stronger than midday overall. Jigging one line and deadsticking the second line is the way to go.  Electronics help in determining what the fish want that given day and will up your catch of fish.   Ice fishing has been excellent, come on up.  It's still winter on the border! 
    • Kettle
      There's only one Waterfowl guide in the country that I went to. He runs about 20 trips a year. So he harvests about 185,000 less teal a year than some of the individual southern states. In MN, lots of the teal are gone before the early teal season 
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    • Kettle
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    • Mike89
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    • Kettle
      Some teal from central America 
    • JerkinLips
      I think it was opened so I don't think I would trust it.  I will find use for the wooden blocks however.
    • SkunkedAgain
      Some morons just shouldn't be allowed out on the ice. Thanks for pitching in to clean it up.   On the bonus side, is it a quart of oil that you can use?
    • SkunkedAgain
      Some morons just shouldn't be allowed out on the ice. Thanks for pitching in to clean it up.   On the bonus side, is it a quart of oil that you can use?
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