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Re: smallmouth bass, ice fishing?
LSF Member
Joined:
02/16/2005
Posts: 1265
That is a great video, Feathers. I was just thinking of that one when I was reading this thread.

I have successfully targeted smallmouth through the ice on two different lakes (not Mille Lacs) in the last couple of years, and hope to do more this year. They are very finicky and seem to be very particular on their locations. On the two lakes that I've had success on, they were on deep rocks. I too would love to get into them on ML, but I have never heard of a single instance of someone catching one there through the ice, which is odd.

Posted on: 11/30 13:31:31
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Re: smallmouth bass, ice fishing?
LSF Member
Joined:
12/28/2005
Posts: 1182
Catching them isn't the problem. The problem is finding them. They bunch up into very small groups and don't roam real far for food. It can be the needle in the haystack issue. I think if you can find them on Mille lacs you'd probably have some luck catching them but finding them is a big if.

Posted on: 11/30 13:35:08
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Re: smallmouth bass, ice fishing?
New Member
Joined:
02/14/2012
Posts: 2
I used to fish Mille lacs first ice religiously. Walked out to the Shoreline breaks from wigwam to wealthwood. One season 10-12 yrs ago I had my spot picked and plan in place. Only to get to access before daylight and see a three foot break between me and the spot I wanted to fish. Target 21’ only in 9’. Rocks like bowling balls. Decided to drill a few holes and wait for light. Another angler walked out saw break and left. After light i didn’t feel comfortable crossing break. Started jigging with no expectations. Missed a nice bite. Surprised me. Jigged a couple More minutes and moved. Dropped jig and bite right away. Thought northern. But ended up being a very nice smallmouth. Fished those 5 holes and caught 3 more in next half hour. Wind picked up. Break started closing. So I hopped it and set up in 21’ and had one of the best days catching walleye and perch. Was off by 11 with limit of both. Plus throwback. Limit was 4 one over 20 then. Fish were still biting when I left. And bite was hot for a week. Accidental but they were a blast to catch.

Posted on: 11/30 18:27:52
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Re: smallmouth bass, ice fishing?
LSF Member
Joined:
10/20/2015
Posts: 290
Not possible

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Posted on: 12/1 0:46:55
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Re: smallmouth bass, ice fishing?
LSF Member
Joined:
01/15/2008
From Mille Lacs/Landfall
Posts: 1080
You can stumble into them sometimes, like I said. As you see that is all different guys and I know Jim is on Chequamegon which is known for a viable place to get smallies through the ice.And one pic is from NY. The original post was about smallies on Mille Lacs through the ice. There are a few lakes that they bite, but not many and very hard to "target". More of a fluke. I can search the web for Sasquatch pics too!

Posted on: 12/1 9:20:45
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Re: smallmouth bass, ice fishing?
LSF Member
Joined:
05/15/2012
Posts: 14
Quote:

Oldstar wrote:
You can stumble into them sometimes, like I said. As you see that is all different guys and I know Jim is on Chequamegon which is known for a viable place to get smallies through the ice.And one pic is from NY. The original post was about smallies on Mille Lacs through the ice. There are a few lakes that they bite, but not many and very hard to "target". More of a fluke. I can search the web for Sasquatch pics too!



There are a few lakes that they bite but not many

I love it! Can you list these lakes so we stay away from the ones where fish don't eat 4/5 months of the year?

Posted on: 12/1 13:48:12
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Re: smallmouth bass, ice fishing?
LSF Member
Joined:
01/15/2008
From Mille Lacs/Landfall
Posts: 1080
Mille Lacs for one. Which was the original question.

Posted on: 12/1 14:19:24
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Re: smallmouth bass, ice fishing?
LSF Member
Joined:
12/28/2005
Posts: 1182
I think some of you guys are muddying the waters here a little.

Lets clear some things up first.

Can you catch smallies in the winter?
YES, some bodies of water make it easier than others but its possible to catch them.

Do smallies eat in the winter?
YES, but their metabolism does slow down in the cold water making them feed less often and less aggressively.

Can you "target" smallies in the winter?
YES, however thats a subjective word. Many people have targeted bigfoot over the years but have they found one? To me the ability
to target a fish/animal would assume some reasonable likelihood of success. Due to smallies schooling up into tight groups in deep water and not aggressively feeding finding them and catching them is generally very difficult, sure you can target them but how reasonable your chances are is the big question. Its certainly not impossible and again some bodies of water make it easier than others. I just wouldn't let a few photos showing smallies on the ice in other states fool you into thinking you've got a good chance to hit the water and start pulling them through a hole.

Strictly speaking of Lake Mille Lacs as it is the lake in question I'd venture a guess to say it will be very difficult. With the number of guys that hit the lake each winter if smallies were reasonably catchable I think you'd hear of more incidental catches. If you put in the time and really search you might be able to stumble onto a honey hole but you may be rewarded with sluggish fish reluctant to bite. If you want a challenge this would certainly fit the bill.

Posted on: 12/1 15:47:06
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Re: smallmouth bass, ice fishing?
LSF Member
Joined:
12/07/2012
Posts: 1187
I would add crappies and perch to that statement as well.I've caught GIANT crappies and buckets of JUMBO perch over the years but not like it used to be.Granted I don't fish as frequent or hard as I used too but I do put my time in.If you do find the holy grail of any of these species make sure you post the GPS spots! good luck don't fall in!!!c63

Posted on: 12/1 17:44:23
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