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Minnesota Fishing Reports
News : Explore Minnesota Fishing Report
Posted by LSF on Aug 05, 2010 (2020 reads) News by the same author

Northeast Minnesota

International Falls -Rainy Lake & the Rainy River
Walleye anglers are having great success, and while they are regularly pulling in walleyes, most are in the slot range and have to be released. Anglers report quite a few keeper-size fish coming from the area east of the Brule Narrows. The walleyes are feeding on the reefs in 25-35 feet of water, with leeches and crawlers working best. Smallmouth bass are active along the south shore of Rainy Lake and in the Rainy River below the dam and downstream to the Littlefork River. Walleye are also biting in these areas, but seem to prefer minnows, and specifically shiners if you can find them. Large northern pike are being pulled from the area around Rainy Lake City, and deeper into Black Bay. To learn more, dial 1-800-325-5766, or visit

On Lakes Kabetogama and Namakan, water levels remain up, and water temperatures are holding in the mid-70's to low-80's. While the walleye bite has slowed somewhat, fishing remains good. Live bait remains best for the walleye; for the most fish, use a jig and minnow combination or a nightcrawler on a slip sinker rig. Fish are holding in the 28-32 feet of water near the bottom, especially at the rock-piles and reefs. This week, check the structure around Sugarbush Island, as well as areas east and north on Kabetogama. And, the northern pike and bass action has been excellent. Lots of 38- to 42-inch pike are being reported, along with many 20-inch smallmouth bass. Northern pike can be found at the weed beds and weedlines using husky jerks, suicks and large spoons. The smallmouth bass are hitting artificials, both topwater and sub-surface crankbaits, from the shorelines out to depths of 12 feet. For more information on Lakes Kabetogama and Namakan, dial 1-800-524-9085, or check out

The walleye bite remains consistent and anglers are finding fish throughout the water column. Most walleyes are moving deeper and starting to show up in 20-30 foot depths. Crawlers on a harness have been the best approach. Once fish are located, switch to a baited jig or a slip bobber set-up. Fall, Birch, and Eagles Nest lakes are the current hot spots. Large northern pike, weighing up to 20-pounds, are coming in on large crankbaits and spinnerbaits trolled at the weed edges and rock points. A sucker under a bobber is also producing fish. Crappies and sunnies are hitting minnows at the weed edges. Johnson, One Pine, and Low lakes are giving up quite a few fish. To find out more, dial 1-800-777-7281, or visit

Cook/Tower - Lake Vermilion
On Lake Vermilion, anglers report good walleye action when using slip bobbers and leeches, especially at the humps and breaks in 14-22 feet of water. Lake water temperatures are in the upper-70s and low-80s. The weeds are magnets for baitfish, along with the gamefish that feed on them. One group of anglers had excellent walleye action when trolling crankbaits along the outside of the weedlines. Another recommendation for mid-summer fishing is to use a lindy rig and crawler combination along the weedlines and at the edge of the breaks. Low light conditions continue to be best. Muskie anglers are taking some fish from the weeds and on the rocks using bucktails and topwater lures. The dusk bite has been strong. Bass are hiding in the shade, but some anglers are doing well when fishing the rock piles. This year's perch class is strong, and anglers should increase the size of bait and brighten the color to attract more fish. To learn more, dial 1-800-648-5897, or visit

Grand Rapids
As of late last week, area guides reported that the fish were fully into their summer patterns. Muskie sport fishing had heated up on Moose, Deer, and Cutfoot Sioux lakes. Walleyes were found by anglers that stayed mobile. The best approach was a live bait rig worked in the deeper water at the structure such as rock piles and bars; leeches were the bait of choice, however crawlers were a great back-up. On windy days, the shallower rocks were best for walleyes and some bonus perch. Sunfish and crappies have been most active during evening hours; look for sunfish at the weedlines, with crappies found deeper in the weeds. For more information, check out

Northwest Minnesota

Baudette -Lake of the Woods & the Rainy River
On Lake of the Woods, walleye anglers are taking good numbers of fish by still-fishing on the mud just off of the shoreline in 30-31 feet of water; drifting and pulling spinners with crawlers is also working well. Some of the current hot spots include Little Traverse and Sturgeon Channel, especially in depths of 18-25 feet of water. The rocky and weedy shorelines have been best when searching for muskies and northern pike. For bass, use spinnerbaits in roughly 10 feet of water. To learn more, dial 1-800-382-FISH, or visit

Walker - Leech Lake
On Leech Lake, walleye action remains great during early evening hours, and the daytime bite is starting to heat up. On windy days, anglers are catching a greater number of walleyes, and keeping some nice eating-size fish. The best action during the day has been in the Goose Island and Star Point areas. Walker Bay is producing some good numbers at North Cedar Point and at the Saucer by Erickson's Landing. Leeches and crawlers on a lindy rig continue to produce fish, but jig and minnow combinations are also starting to produce. The Walker Narrows' Oak Point end is giving up some large perch and a few walleyes to anglers using a jig and minnow in 5-6 feet of water. The evening bite remains best in Walker Bay and at the main lake rocks in depths of 10-12 feet; for the most fish, use crankbaits. For further information, dial 1-800-833-1118, or visit

Detroit Lakes
Three patterns have been producing walleyes on area lakes. On windy, cloudy days, the walleyes have been chasing the newly hatched perch in the shallow waters; anglers are taking fish using crankbaits in 6-10 feet of water. A deep water pattern has also developed, with fish relating to the hard to soft bottom transitions, as well as the mid-lake structure; for these fish, use bottom bouncers and spinners. And, some walleyes remain at the weeds and deep weed edges, close to deep water access. Anglers are taking these fish when live bait rigging with minnows, leeches and crawlers, or when jigging with minnows, leeches, or half a crawler. The best walleye waters have been Big Detroit, Island, Big and Little Pine, Pelican, Lida, Rush and Otter Tail. Bass are responding to aggressive techniques, such as crankbaits, spinners, and rip-jigging plastics at the weed edges. Crappies can be found suspended over deep water when jigging minnows. Anglers are taking lots of sunfish by lowering half a crawler by any weed bed. Muskie anglers are doing well when pitching lures on the flats during morning and evening hours on Pelican, Big Detroit, Battle and Sallie lakes. Large northern pike are taking large baits rigged, trolled and pitched on Sallie and Melissa lakes. To learn more, dial 1-800-542-3992, or go to

Central Region

Otter Tail Lakes Area
Walleyes continue to bite on lakes throughout the Otter Tail Lakes area. For the most fish, hit depths of 20-30 feet at the sunken islands and shoreline breaks using crawlers and leeches. Since leeches are harder to find, a great alternative is a "slimer" artificial bait which comes in different colors and is wet from organic flesh baits. Anglers report a shallow bite after dark, with fish coming in on plugs pulled through 5-10 feet of water. The panfish bite is good on all area lakes in depths of 10-12 feet. Northern pike are in the thick cabbage weeds, responding to buzz baits. For more information, dial 1-800-423-4571, or check out

As of late last week, water temperatures had risen to almost 80-degrees on Lake Miltona, and large panfish were showing up more often. Many of the largest sunnies are caught this time of the year; the best approach has been a slip bobber and small jig tipped with either a leech or nightcrawler, worked in depths of 12-17 feet. Walleyes were active during early morning and late evening hours, with fish hitting lindy rig and leech combinations or spinners worked in 17-22 foot depths. There was an increase in the number of anglers catching walleyes on spinner rigs. Bass were hitting jig and worm combinations and crankbaits at the weedlines. During early morning hours, try the shallows using a spinnerbait through the pencil reeds. Muskie were very spread out in the shallow and deep waters. To find out more, dial 1-877-833-2350, or visit

Whitefish Chain of Lakes Area
Walleyes are hitting long lindy rigs tipped with leeches, nightcrawlers or redtail minnows, pulled through 22-26 feet of water. A good crankbait bite has begun, with anglers taking fish when trolling crankbaits along the weedlines following the 16-20 foot breakline; trolling husky-size baits through deep waters, roughly 20-25 feet down, has also been productive. Northern pike are abundant along the weedlines. For the most fish, troll spinnerrigs with large sucker minnows, or throw spinnerbaits and spoons. The sunny weather has drawn the bass into the weeds where anglers are taking them on plastic worm rigs and spinnerbaits. Crappies and sunfish are hitting jigs or hooks tipped with crappie minnows or worms. Large sunfish are coming from 18-20 feet of water along the weedlines on Upper Whitefish. Crappies can be found suspended in roughly 16 feet of water when using slip bobbers and live bait. To learn more, visit

Brainerd Lakes Area
Walleyes are active on Gull Lake. Fish have started to move from the shoreline structures to off-shore structure, such as sunken islands, humps, and flats. Bass have started to drop deeper to the outside weed edge of the shoreline structure, where lots of fish are being taken. Northern pike and muskies are hanging out at the inside and outside edge of the cabbage weedbeds, waiting for the baitfish to venture out. For more information on what's biting and where, dial 1-800-450-2838, or visit

Isle/Onamia -Lake Mille Lacs
On Lake Mille Lacs, walleye anglers are taking fish on spinner and crawler combinations, as well as on deep-diving crankbaits worked at the mud and deep gravel. Switch to slip bobbers during evening hours. On windy, overcast days, troll the shallow rocks on the south end of the lake. And, don't be afraid to try something different this time of year, such as a different color, bait or depth to find out what's working best. Smallmouth bass are active at the rocks in 4-12 feet of water; for the most fish, use tube jigs in brown, orange or green. There have been numerous reports of walleye anglers taking smallmouth bass when trolling the shallows. To learn more, dial 1-888-350-2692, or check out

Some nice-size crappies are being pulled from Solomon Lake, with good numbers coming from Games and Norway lakes. Panfish continue to bite on Lake Andrew up near Sibley Lake State Park, as well as in the reeds along the shores of Lake Calhoun. For walleye action, check the deeper waters of Green Lake in Spicer. To find out more, dial 1-800-845-8747, or visit

Twin Cities Greater Metropolitan vicinity

White Bear Lake Area Lakes
Walleye anglers are taking some fish when using nightcrawlers and leeches in the deeper waters. The bass, sunfish, northern pike and muskie action, however, has been great! The best times to catch fish on White Bear Lake are 5:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. For bass, use leeches, with smaller leeches producing sunfish. And, northern pike and muskies are hitting just about anything! To learn more, dial 651/653-5122, or check out

On Lake Waconia, fishing has been fairly consistent for this time of year. Bass and sunfish remain the most active species. Bass can be found on the outside weed edges in 8-14 feet of water and on the inside edges in depths of 3-6 feet. For the most fish, use a Texas-rigged worm and a bass jig, especially at Cemetery and Anderson's reefs. Sunfish are coming from on top of the reefs and off of the breaks. Anglers are having lots of success using a bobber and tiny jig with a waxworm or panfish leech just over the side of the boat, especially on Kegs Reef. The water temperatures remains in the low 80's; using the bait water from the bait shop instead of keeping live bait in the lake will extend the life of your bait. And when releasing fish, try to keep them submerged and gently coax them back to swimming. For more information, dial 952/442-5812, or check out

Southern Minnesota

As of August 5, waxwings were still feeding on Trico spinners in Forestville State Park. There were several Isonychia spinners, (females with egg sacks), on the wall at the Fisheries Office that morning. Some large caddis, probably Giant Rusty Sedge, were also seen. The hoppers are now very large on the Whitewater's Middle Branch, with many measuring size #6. Stream and river conditions were clear with normal water levels on the East Beaver Creek at Beaver Creek Valley State Park, Gribben Creek, the Root River's South Branch at Forestville State Park, Trout Run, and the South, North and Middle sections of the Whitewater River. To learn more, dial 1-800-944-2670, or visit

Albert Lea
Fountain Lake has been good for crappies and walleyes. Small jigs are working best for the crappies, with walleye responding best to small white and green twister tail jigs. The hot spots are near Blackmer Bridge and in the channel. For more information, dial 1-800-345-8414, or check out

Fairmont Area Lakes
Fox Lake is giving up a greater number of panfish. The walleye bite has been slow, however anglers are finding a few fish using nightcrawlers and leeches. Muskies have turned a bit more sluggish. Lots of catfish are coming from shore on Hall, Budd, and Sisseton lakes. Some panfish continue to be taken, and a few walleyes are being caught by anglers using leeches. Bass remain active. There have been a few reports of perch and bullheads being pulled from Iowa Lake. The majority of fish are being taken during early morning and late afternoon hours. To learn more, dial 1-800-657-3280, or visit

Ortonville -Big Stone Lake
As of late last week, anglers were targeting perch on Big Stone Lake, with 15-20 perch taken at a time. Various methods have been working, including a conventional light bobber technique, vertically jigging a minnow or crawler, trolling with a bottom bouncer and spinner, and pulling crankbaits. Walleye anglers were also catching lots of perch when pulling walleye-divers about 70 feet behind the boat. The average perch has been in the 10-inch range, with quite a few 16- to 17-inch walleyes also reported. Anglers reported an abundance of white bass. The best time to fish for all species has been either early morning up until 10:00 a.m., or late afternoon to just after dark. The islands area over to Lagoona Beach seem to be most productive. While the perch bite is typically best during the month of September, no one is complaining! To find out more, dial 1-800-568-5722, or check out

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