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Minnesota Fishing Reports
News : Explore Minnesota Fishing Report
Posted by LSF on Jan 28, 2010 (1606 reads) News by the same author

Northeast Minnesota

On Lakes Kabetogama and Namakan, anglers had a pretty active week, with most reporting some success. The walleye bite was the big story. The best approach was a jig and minnow combination worked at either side of 35 feet. The deep pockets off the shoreline structure were the most dependable locations. Northern pike are being caught and speared at depths varying from 9-18 feet at the soft bottom shorelines and sandbar edges. Crappie anglers may have to wait until spring for the bite to heat up. There have been some reports of lake trout success on the inland lakes. For the most fish, use a horizontal jig or spoon near the bottom in depths of 35-45 feet. And, lots of new snow should improve local trail conditions. Please note that there are still some openings at area resorts this winter. For more information, dial 1-800-524-9085, or check out

Trout action continues to dominate the fishing scene on many area lakes. Burntside and Snowbank lakes are giving up lake trout weighing 3- to 6-pounds, with an occasional fish weighing up to eleven-pounds being reported. The recommended technique is an airplane jig tipped with a ciscoe and worked over 50 feet of water. Tofte and Miners lakes continue to produce lots of rainbows and splake measuring up to 20 inches. Work the area just off the shoreline in 15-30 feet of water on Miners - on Tofte, hit depths of less than 10 feet for the most fish. Small black or pink jigs tipped with a waxworm have been best for rainbows, with splake hitting mostly small spoons. The crappie bite is improving on Fall, Farm and Garden lakes. A small minnow under a slip bobber has been the preferred method. Keep an eye on the sonar since some of these have been suspended up to 12 feet off the bottom, with most fish coming from 20-30 feet of water. The season is developing into one of the best in years. To learn more, dial 1-800-777-7281, or visit

Northwest Minnesota

Baudette/Lake of the Woods & the Rainy River
All areas of Lake of the Woods are producing fish. At the Northwest Angle and Islands area, fishing has been best just off the reefs in depths of 21-25 feet of water. Anglers have been catching mostly walleyes, along with some nice perch. The larger walleyes have been 24- to 29-inches in length, and anglers are tossing these back. Along the South Shore, anglers continue to report success west of Pine Island and north of Morris Point in 32-36 feet of water. Adrian's Road is in great shape for travel to and from these areas, with ice depth measuring a solid 2 feet. Most of the fish have been deep. The best approach has been a lure that glows, especially in white, pink or gold, and tipped with a minnow. Anglers report taking lots of walleyes measuring 14- to 18-inches. The largest walleye that came through the ice within the past week measured 32 1/2-inches. The sauger bite has been steady, and some giant perch are also being reported. To learn more, dial 1-800-382-FISH, or visit

Walker/Leech Lake
The walleye action at Walker Bay on Leech Lake has been exceptional! Lots of anglers took fish in the 18- to 26-inch slot, along with several measuring over the slot limit this past weekend. The two largest walleye reported were 30 1/4- and 28 1/2-inches. These fish were released to allow a future angler the same exciting experience. Fish houses placed above 21-25 feet of water and those over 36-39 foot depths did equally well. And anglers renting a fish house on a local panfish lake reported non-stop action, with limits of fish to take home, and lots of fish having to be thrown back. Please remember to always park your vehicles at least 50 feet away from a fish house or another vehicle. For more information, dial 1-800-833-1118, or visit

Detroit Lakes
Sunnies and crappies are being pulled from 10-20 feet of water in Detroit Lakes area lakes, including Melissa, Big Detroit, Little Detroit, Deadshot Bay, Floyd and Prairie. Walleye action has been best during low-light periods, with shiner minnows worked in depths of 18-21 feet producing fish in Big Detroit, Melissa and Sallie lakes. Northern pike have been active on most area lakes at the weedlines. And, the annual Detroit Lakes Polar Fest will feature a youth fishing derby on Saturday, February 13, at the Little Detroit Lake public access by the beach. There will also be hot turkey legs and hot drinks available under a tent. Dial 1-800- 542-3992, or check out for more information on the Detroit Lakes Polar Fest, lodging options, and fishing throughout the area.

Central Region

While fishing action slowed last weekend, anglers continued to report some nice sunfish. Most fish came from depths of 8-12 feet of water on moon glows and small jigs tipped with a waxworm. Some good size perch are also being taken, with fish pulled from depths of 5-8 feet off of the flats on crappie minnows. As for the walleyes, a few smaller fish were pulled from 18-28 feet of water on frostees and jigs - slip bobber rigs and fat heads were also producing fish. To find out more, dial 1-877-833-2350, or visit

Brainerd Lakes Area
Last weekend's warm temperatures brought out the anglers, most of which reported great fishing action. All lakes in the Crosslake area seem to be providing lots of action. For the most walleyes, use a shiner minnow either under a bobber or jigged on a rattle spoon. Northern pike continue to hit sucker minnows in 8-14 foot depths under tip-ups. Crappies are hitting waxworms and minnows on small glow jigs, both during early morning hours and at sunset. Look for fish to be suspended in 14-18 feet of water. To learn more, dial 1-800-450-2838, or visit

Willmar Area Lakes
The recent snow and ice storm put a damper on fishing, with few anglers venturing out onto area lakes in recent days. The lakes are safe to travel, however there is limited access onto the lakes due to blowing snow. This weekend is looking good for fishing conditions, and there should be clear paths by Friday, January 29. Some of the lakes to check out are Green, Willmar, Foot, Andrew, and Big Kandiyohi. To learn more, dial 1-800-845-8747, or visit

Twin Cities Greater Metropolitan vicinity

Lots of anglers ventured out to do some serious tip-up fishing last weekend, and reports indicate that it paid off. Good numbers of northern pike were pulled from Waconia Bay, Center Reef, Nelson's Flats, and the area north of Pillsbury Reef. Anglers took the majority of fish from 10-15 feet of water, near or in the weeds. Sucker minnows have been the bait of choice, with many anglers doing well with a tip-up rig and plain hook. Ice thickness has remained mostly the same, despite the recent rain and warm temperatures. The plowed roads are also holding up well, however expect some water on the roads and a slightly rough ride. For further information, dial 952/442-5812, or check out

Report courtesy of Explore Minnesota Tourism

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