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james_walleye

Do any of you guys fish Pepin much? From early May until early fall i dont know if there is a body of water anywhere in MN i'd rather fish. Ok maybe Mille Lacs...just because of the average size of the walleyes. And maybe my honeyhole by Mankato the 1st 2 weeks of walleye season because its been over 8 years since i've not caught at least 1 eye over 7 lbs in that time frame.

But back to Pepin. Its really incredible when you learn how to fish it. Our best day for walleyes last year was early May. We caught we figured 50 walleyes that day between 14-18" and it was only 50 because we didnt find the fish until 1:00 and we ran out of crawlers at about 6:00. Our best day overall there was mid August. Here was our tally (we kept track and i wrote down the figures on my calendar). Approximately 50 smallies...the biggest being 18 1/2". 2 largemouth. 2 walleyes. 2 carp both about 12 lbs. 15 sheephead. 6 channel cats 4-7 lbs. 4 sauger. 30 big bluegills...most about 1/2lb. 15 crappies from 3/4- 1 1/4lbs. 2 northerns. 5 rock bass. The action was pretty much non-stop that whole day. And its such easy fishing. You can fish all day long and not see 1 other boat fishing the way we fish and i cannot for the life of me figure it out. Its all about fishing the rip-rap south of Lake City in about 2-6' of water. Fishing 1/32 oz jigs with about 2" of crawler. The walleyes are there early in May and as it gets to June the walleyes move off a bit deeper and the other fish start biting. July and August is the best for sheer numbers of fish.

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Guest

James, SSSHHHH, Keep this to us. (HA, HA)

I think Lake Pepin and all of Pool 4
use to be one of the best kept secrets around. Fishing there gets better and better each year.

I don't know of any body of water that I would rather run off to for a day of fishing.
You can target all most any fish in Minnesota . (Other than Muskies) I have caught my largest Walley and northern down there. I know of people who drive to Canada to catch the same numbers of walleye or size notherns that can be caught in our own back yard. I spend a lot of days on the river exploring and catching fish.

Please don't even get me started on the bass fishing on the river. This key board would be smoking... (ha, ha)

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Guest

One more thing...

Check out he Wisconsin D.N.R. fishing forcast posted on the Mississippi river south of Hastings board. Sounds like some good times a head.

Go Fish!!

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james_walleye

I'd like to learn how to fish the walleyes down there a little more. I can catch a lot of them in april/may but who cant. I have a bit harder time of it during the warmer months. And i have a hard time period locating the bigger fish. Give me a lake in May and i can find good fish. The river...i guess i havent fished it enough yet to have figured out that part. Northerns....i love to fish northerns but i've yet to really give it a try. We catch a few by accident but i know how big the northerns are on the river and i'd like to learn how to target them.

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Jim W

Thanks for the wonderful info! I'm sure that it won't effect your fishing results by sharing the info! Do you/have you icefished Pepin? I heard last season that the large saugers were really being nailed on the South end of the lake. I personally have never ice fished Pepin, but would love to give it a go. Everone seems very tight lipped regarding icefishing Pepin. Must be pretty good action going on!!!??? Keep it coming in boys, one good turn deserves another!!! Jim W

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james_walleye

I have never ice fished Pepin but i've been thinking about giving it a try. If a guy could get into a bunch of big saugers it would surely be worth it......

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O.K. here goes. Lake Pepin, in my opinion is the most under ice fished area around. Don't get me wrong the back waters of pool 4 get hit pretty hard but the lake it self tends to go untouched.

One good place to fish and I have done well at is at the fishing pier in lake city and the large flat down stream. You can park around the marina area and walk on. Some people drive on at the boat landing just south of the marina and pier. I personally do not drive on the frozen river, and must say when ice fishing it, test the ice for thickness. Current does funny things to the ice in different areas. You will pick up a mixed bag of fish in this area. Early and late ice tends to be best.

Another good area is all along the Minnesota side down stream. The channel cuts in close here, and fish move up and down all season.
The water usually opens back up down around lacopolis so areas north are best. This is a area to pick up some dandy walleyes come summer. But during the winter my favorite is the HUGE northerns that cruise these banks. I am talking 20 LBS. + fish. I don't usually preach catch and release but I love these fish and they are truly a treasure for our area. So catch a Trophy for the wall if you want but Please throw the rest back.

You can get into different areas down stream along the Highway between Lake City and Wabasha. Take a drive down some day and you will see where the local guys go out and park. I will say this if the fish are going in these areas winter or summer the locals are usually out there.

One more tip of safety. Stay away from the areas where streams and springs enter the lake. The ice is never very safe to walk on even during the coldest weather.

That's what I have to offer. Like I said it is not hit hard for ice fishing. Most of the guys like to go north to Redwing and open water fish for walleyes this time of year. And if you want big numbers of fish that is the way to go.

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MnSportsman

It's not necessarily topic related, but I wanted to mention...
"Head of the lake" area towards Frontenac & Bay city.

try it out.

and,
West Newton & the Half Moon landing area.
(look on your maps, or ask at "Shortys'".)

AS WAS SAID BEORE... Watch the places where moving water can cause thin ice!

------------------
Good Luck & Watch your bobber!
MnSportsman
Proud to be a member in good standing, of the
"Church of the Divine Wilderness"!
;)

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james_walleye

Hey Nitro you catch those big northerns under the ice on the Minnesota rip-rap shoreline? How consistent is this action and what depth level do the northerns run at? I'd love to catch and release a few hogs. Is the whole shoreline good or specific areas? Thanks.....

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Yes, I have caught them al along the rip-rap on the Minnesota side. I really have never seen where one depth stayed consistent. I would usually start with Tip-ups a varies depths. It really helps to take a second guy a long so the tip-up numbers can increase to cover more water. Once you get some consistent flag home in on that depth.

Hurry you most likely have about 2 to 3 weeks left and these Big guys start heading to the shallow bays to spawn. Most years by the first of March you can start catching these fish in 3-4 ft or less in Dark bottom bays.
On dead shiners or sucker minnows. I don't have much luck jigging for them by than.

And by ice out you can even wade and stalk these fish. Want real fun do this on a fly rod.

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