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Fathead

Gravel report

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Fathead

Hello all,

I typically am a Mud fisherman this time of year, but since we are also fishing smallies tomorrow (concentrating on the South end) I am leaning towards fishing eyes early on the gravel. I am just wondering how you all have done recently on 4 or 5 mile gravel? Has fishing been decent or has activity dropped off in recent weeks. I know the mud is still producing some fish (but not like 2nd & 3rd week of June!)but I have heard mixed reports on the gravel. Any input would be appreciated.

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Fathead

Hello all,

Just to give you my most recent report.
I was out on the gravel (4 & 5mile) with a buddy last Saturday. We managed to boat 16 in 6+ hrs. Not what I would consider a great trip in comparison to what I experienced from opener through July 1. We ran crankbaits and spinners/crawlers. All but one were caught on crankbaits. Seemed to have our best action when cruising 1.8 to 2.0mph.

Has anyone been out the past few days? How have you done? I am heading to the mud tomorrow. I am hoping things will pick up a little bit from the last two times out!

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ReelTimes

Regarding use of crank baits, are you running those down deep (i:e only several feet off bottom) or without weight and within 10-12 feet of the surface. Thanks.

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ReelTimes

Regarding use of crank baits, are you running those down deep (i:e only several feet off bottom) or without weight and within 10-12 feet of the surface. Thanks.

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Fathead

Hello guys,

Affirmative Dman, I will keep you posted on how I do today on the mud. I will be leaving work mid-morning and plan to be up on the water by 1:00pm.

ReelTimes...I am currently using #7 or #9 floating raps (like most of the year for me, minnow color seems to be working best)in conjunction with a 3oz 3way rig. The lead length I use for the drop sinker is approx 2.5' and the lead to the rap is approx 4'. I try to maintain a 3 to 4' distance from the bottom when running them. You can pretty much fish this rig vertical when moving at 1.3 to 1.5mph, but as you move faster (which I am starting to do now) 1.8 to 2.2mph you must let more line out and therefore my line comes off the rod to the water in more of a 70 degree angle. It is very important that you use no-stretch line when doing this, or you will miss some of your strikes. This year I have started to use "PowerPro" 10/2 and I absolutely love it! It is a dynamite line and would recommend it to anyone who is considering trying a new line.

Good luck all

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Guest

I'm new to this board. Lots of good info & tips. Truck's packed, boat's hitched up. All I have to do is wait for the wife to get off work.
I'm going to try the floating Rapala on a 3-way. Sounds good.Thanks

Ed

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Guest

Try upsizing to the #11 in the Vampire Rapala or the Millenuim Stick Minnow in the Clown pattern. Both baits have excellent flash. With all the rain the lake has had, the water is more stained than normal. Having a bigger profile bait with some good flash, will increase your chances of getting attention. Also change out the bell weight with a Rudder Cutter weight from Gopher Tackle. It slices through water with little resistance giving you better control to keep the rig at a 45 degree angle. Good Luck

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Fathead

Hello all,

Funny that you said that Dman, I was out last Friday and ran my #7 minnow raps without success, I then ran a #9 version and only caught one which was the only bite I had as well. I then switched to a #9 Red and silver floating rapala. The red and silver is not part of rapalas normal product offering, but I managed to stumble on these little gems this past spring. They were on clearance at Gander mountain. I am not sure if these were limited additions or not, but the price was right (.99 each). I hooked one of these puppies up and had very nice action with them. In four hours I had 17 pickups but only boated 7 fish. I definetely will be giving these another try this week!

I only have a couple of these red/silver raps, but was thinkiing about the vampire and clown styles when I was driving back fromthe lake. I told a buddy of mine about this and he will be out on Wednesday this week trying the clown and vampires.

I fished the mud on Friday, and caught all of my fish in 33 to 37' of water. THe key speed was definetely 1.8mph, nothing slower or faster produced any action.

From what I observed Friday, the fishing is almost grounded to a halt. I did not see any fish caught on Lindys, and only one fish caught on a slip bobber rig. I spoke to a couple of guys at the landing and they received the ole "goose egg" for their attempts that day. Tough, tough bite right now.

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Wanderer
      Good job guys!
    • YellowFinRed
      Have only been out a couple of times now but did get a 5.5 lb walleye my first 10 minutes out in 16 feet of water. Lots of fish in the 16-20 feet range. No jumping in the boat but catching fish on the mid lake areas. I'll be darned if I'll sit under a bridge with other boats when you can catch fish out on the lake without others boaters around.
    • Gillraker
      Any reports from Buffalo?  I would imagine that they are doing OK right out in front of the marina/beach.  Anybody?
    • DonkeyHodey
      agree with gimruis.  look to the river. Your chances of catching a 3# bass or better are exponentially better on the river.  (There's a reason SC/mississippi was chosen for the Gov's opener last year--the Mississippi around here is really a world class smallmouth fishery.)  (most river rats will tell you that you can essentially catch smallies any time of year and often as by-catch while targeting other species.)  Below the SC dam is pretty much catch and release only (all 12-20 inchers must be released) but it's quite loaded with big smallies! (and lots of good shore areas on public land)  Just be prepared to lose a few lures on snags... Frankly, If you want to stick to lakes, I think you can pretty much pick a lake in a 30 mile radius...--most produce bass in good quantity, it's just years may vary in terms of sizes.  Clearwater is good.  Consider Bass lake adjacent to it.  (...it's not just a clever name.)
    • Wanderer
      Haha!  Based on our conversation at the truck I’m going to edit that comment a teeny bit!  Cuz I know both of us had a workout.  I was still sore yesterday but it was a good sore. 😎
    • gimruis
      I like Clearwater too.  I haven't fished in in a couple years now but I used to and we caught a lot of fish out there.  The one negative was all the competition - there seemed to be a tournament almost every weekend. Another overlooked place to target smallmouth: RIVERS.  The Sauk River and the Mississippi between St Cloud and Elk River is plum full of bass and receives minimal fishing pressure (its just my opinion but rivers in general are very under fished here in MN).
    • Stephen L Johnston Jr.
      Thanks for the share Fitz! I noticed you guys had a couple of nice ones on saturdays event, i was curious how thatcame about. Congratulations on the crazy weekend!
    • Uncle Levi
      I have an STP frog cutter so I make my own.  
    • Surface Tension
      The torque tab counters the pull caused by the rotation of the prop.   Trimming the outboard in or out(up & down) can make a pull show up or go away.   Your Merc uses an allen wrench or a socket and extension to reach the bolt to loosen the torque tab.  Merc uses a right hand rotation.  If the bow wants to turn right by itself you would move the torque tab towards to the center.
    • ANYFISH2
      Thanks, a day well spent with a good person for sure. Thanks again for the work you put in at the end of the trip!  Your fishing needs to get in better shape I think!😓