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Daily Subscription Msg 1 Posted: 04:25 PM 09/19/06 (CST)
ALEXANDRIA – Christopherson’s Bait & Tackle, Dana Freese, 2 blocks east of Big Ole, (320-763-3255) Walleyes are starting to show fall patterns. Try lakes Ida, Miltona and Le Homme Dieu using jig and fatheads or redtails in 25-30 feet of water during the day and coming shallow at night. The bass bite is still pretty consistent, and the bluegills are biting close to the weed edge, but are starting to taper off. Muskies are biting on Lobster and Miltona Lakes on bucktails.

ANNANDALE - B.J.’s Bait & Tackle, Bill, west side of Clearwater Lake, between the two public accesses (320-274-3730) BJ's Bait on Clearwater Lake held its 8th Annual Northern Contest on Saturday, September 9 from 8 am to 3 pm. There was a full field of 100 boats and lots of pike over the 23-inch minimum were caught. Don Conrad and Mike Engelhart took first place with total weight of 17.99 lbs for three pike and took home $1,000. They also had the biggest fish, 10.7, which earned them an additional $250. Second place winners were Jeff Wohl and wife Tracy with total weight of 15.82 for three pike. They won $700. Third place and $400 went to Pat Chapman, Tim Chapman and James Chapman with 14.38 for three northerns.

ANOKA – Action’s Fishing, Jack, 809 West Hwy 10 (763-422-4890) The fishing report is similar to last week in that the fishing is still good. If anything it has gotten better. Smallmouth on the river still are biting very good. People are reporting 30-50 fish days, this is typical for this stretch of river in the fall. The reports are also starting to come down from Mille Lacs, it seems the bite is back on up there. Out by Buffalo is Lake Pulaski and there is a good walleye bite there right now, anglers are using redtails. The river rose a little but is back down, remember to use caution. Out in Wright County there have been some really nice sunfish coming out of a few of the smaller lakes, no one wanted to mention the lakes but they are catching them somewhere.

BATTLE LAKE – Ben’s Bait & Tackle, Josie, Junction of Hwy 78 and 210 (218-864-5596) The walleye bite is getting better. The MWT came to W. Battle Lake and a lot of fish were caught. The big fish of the tournament was 12 ½ lbs! Most had success on crawlers and the best depths have been 5-15 ft. Ottertail still continues to be a good choice as well. Pike are still active and being caught in the weedlines. Big sunfish reports are coming from Stocker and Eagle Lake. For the first time this year Bass reports have slowed down but they are still catching them.

BEMIDJI – Bluewater Bait & Sports, Mark Cook, 1 mile north of the Hwy 2 & 71 Intersection (218-444-2248) The walleye bite continues to be hot on the area big lakes. During the day, using a jig tipped with fathead or shiner bottom bouncing just off the breaks on Lake Bemidji and Plantagenet. Switch to crank baits in the evening and after dark. Muskies are biting, moving into the fall patterns. Look for them on the deep weed cabbage using bucktails or glidebaits. Crappies are being found along the deep weedlines.

BLACKDUCK - Timberline Sport & Tackle, Carl Adams, Junction of Hwy 71 and Blackduck Lake Rd (218-835-4636) The walleyes are biting on Blackduck Lake in 10-17 feet of water with jig and a minnow or trolling shad raps. The panfish bite is going okay on all area panfish lakes.

BRAINERD LAKES AREA – Brainerd Guide Service, John Blong (218-825-8965) The walleye bite continues to be strong in the Brainerd lakes area. Pelican, Gull, and the Whitefish Chain have been giving up good numbers of fish this last week. The best fishing has been right off the weedline. The water depth has varied depending of the clarity of the lake being fished. Gull 14-16 feet, Whitefish 18-20 feet, and Pelican 28-32 feet. The best bait continues to be a Lindy rig tipped with a redtail chub. The best northern pike fishing has been occurring on the Whitefish Chain in 25 to 35 feet of water. The bait action has been strong on most of the area lakes.

CHISAGO CITY – Frankie’s Live Bait and Marine, Brad, Corner of Hwy 8 and Co Rd 77 (651-257-6334) Fishing is still good but no one is fishing. Those who are getting out are catching a lot of fish. The panfish bite is still good everywhere. Big northerns are biting on Sunrise. Walleyes are starting to bite in the channel on Green and the big bass continue to bite on Chisago. Goose hunters in the area have been having a tough time. The season started off great but they have disappeared.

CROSSLAKE - Holiday of Cross Lake, Lee (218-692-2708) Whitefish, Rush and Pelican are producing nice catches of walleyes in 15-28 feet of water on redtails, shiners or leeches. Anglers are working the outside edge of the weed line using Lindy rigs. Some anglers are trolling crankbaits along drop-offs with lots of success. Bass and northern action is also taking place along the weedline. Plastic worms rigs or spinnerbaits worked in and on top the weeds are provide lots of bass action. Northern are biting on sucker minnows either bobber fished or trolled on spinner rigs. Many smaller lakes are proving lots of bass and northern action. Crappie and panfish are suspending out in 14-20 feet of water off of points or submerged islands. Small jigs tipped with minnows or wax worms. Large panfish have been found in deeper water.

DETROIT LAKES - Dick Beardsley’s Guide Service (218-846-9230) The walleye fishing is slowly starting to pick up just a bit. Jigs and minnows along the sharp breaks and weedlines are the areas to concentrate on. Detroit, Pelican, Big Cormorant, Big Toad, Lizzie, Lida, Elbow, Pickeral, Tullaby and White Earth lakes are all worth a go. Crappies are being caught on area lakes using small jigs and plastics. We are finding the crappies roaming around and suspended along some of the deepest areas of the lakes. Once you locate them you can have some excellent action! The bass fishing remains excellent in deep water with jigs and plastics. The musky action is starting to heat up on Detroit, Pelican and Beers lakes.

DULUTH - Fisherman’s Corner, Scott, 7 miles north of Miller Mall on Hwy 53 (218-729-5369) Good reports are coming in for walleyes. They are biting in 10-12 feet of water using blown up crawlers on a Lindy. Crappies are being found in 15-20 feet of water in the holes on Fish Lake. Smallies are still biting in the St. Louis River and bass at Caribou Lake. On Lake Superior, out from the Lester area, fish are being biting in about 130 feet of water dragging flies/squids with flashers. Also, grouse numbers are up in the area. It should be a great opener.

DULUTH - Marine General, 1501 London Road, on the edge of Lake Superior (218-724-8833) Fishing is good on the west end. Lakers are being caught out in about 200 feet of water, around 9 miles out. Anglers are getting limits of lakers in about 2 to 2 ½ hours dragging the bottom. Due to the NE winds over the last week, the surface temp has been up around 62 to 65 degrees. As you go up the north shore, target fish in about 150 feet deep out from Two Harbors, and about 80 feet deep out from Silver Bay. Some small walleyes are being caught in the St. Louis River. Some browns and brook trout are being found in the Brule River. But the rivers up the north shore have very low water levels. Anglers are marking fish just out in about 100 feet of water, but they just aren’t biting. Continue to watch the weather report, once they get some rain, the river levels will come up and the run will be on.

EDEN VALLEY – Mike’s Bait & Tackle, Mike, right off Hwy 55 (320-453-2248) The walleyes are biting on Koronis. Bounce a jig and a minnow in about 18-20 feet of water during the day, coming up to 6 feet of water at night. The northern bite has been hit or miss. The sunfish are biting on Horseshoe by Cedar Island and Krones Bay.

GREY EAGLE - Nancy’s Bait & Tackle, Rex, on CR 2, four miles east of the Rock Tavern on Big Birch Lake, four miles west of Upsala (320-285-2405) The walleye bite has really been improving. Best bets for walleyes are Big and Little Birch and Cedar Lake. At night trolling cranks has been working and during the day river chubs, shiners and redtails have been good. The smallmouth on Big and little Birch have really been biting, use river chubs for them on the humps. Crappies are biting on Moose and St. Mary’s and the sunfish are biting on Big Swan and Little and Big Birch. The walleyes on McCormick are biting good again and that has been mostly on leeches.

HACKENSACK - Swanson’s Bait & Tackle, Jim Tuller, Hwy 371 on the north end of Hackensack (218-675-6176) The Leech Lake muskie tourney last weekend produced over 100 muskies, with 2 over 50 inches. The panfish are biting on Pleasant Lake. And some walleyes are coming in on Woman Lake.

KABETOGAMA-NAMAKAN – Gateway Store, US Hwy 53 & CO Rd 122, 30 miles south of Int’l Falls-Canadian border, Phil Hart (218-875-2121) Major temperature differentials this past week should put fall fishing in high gear. Temperatures in the 80s suddenly dropped to overnight lows in the 20s setting the stage for fall. Water temperatures have dropped from the 70 degree mark down to the low 60s throughout the lakes. Walleye bite is favoring minnows, limited action on crawlers and leeches. Deep running crank baits producing at 25-foot plus depths. Northern pike also favoring live bait, suckers or light northern minnows with bobber rig. Anglers finding some success with surface baits and big spinner rigs. Smallmouth season winding down, artificial lures still the best choice near the rock piles or rock and rubble shorelines. No crappie action to report yet, but with dropping water temperatures, expect some predictable fishing soon. Look for walleyes in the 30-foot range, try slip sinker rigs with minnows to locate them then switch to jig and minnow when you find a concentration of fish.

LAKE OF THE WOODS –Area Tourism Bureau, Denelle, near junction of Hwy 11 and Hwy 172 in Baudette (1-800-382-FISH) The current water temperature on the Rainy River is 68 degrees and the emerald shiners have begun their run up the river! Local guides are anticipating the gradual migration of walleyes toward the Rainy. Once the walleyes begin to congregate in the gap, anglers move from using crankbaits to traditional jigging tackle. In addition to catching wall-trophy sized walleyes, smallmouth bass and crappie fishing has been reported good around the Clementson area. The resort guides along the South Shore are reporting excellent action from Pine Island to Zippel Bay where trolling is consistently producing good numbers of fish. Even though August is over, we are still seeing some trophy-sized fish being landed in the 9- to 11-pound range. Our resort guides report that there are still large schools of fish on the big lake in the 28-foot water depths in the sand and mud areas. Many local anglers report that there are also many fish congregating around the reef areas. Crappie fishing in the Northwest Angle and Island Community has picked up. The Angle and Island area is an exceptional place to find these pan fish. Crappies are not only delicious to eat, but easy to catch. The walleyes are biting off of Poplar Island, east of Big Island and south of Garden Island. Bright white and gold presentation colors seem to be best right now. Make sure to register for the Championship Minnesota Tournament Trail, scheduled September 22-23. Weigh in will be at the public access by Border View Lodge; call 218-634-1631 for further details

LEECH LAKE – Anderson’s Resorts, Tim (1-800-516-0077) Pine Point and Sand Point has had a good evening bite in 10-12 feet. Muskies are hitting bucktails. Call us for an update. A few bluegills and some perch are being caught.

MANKATO – The Bobber Shop, North Riverfront Drive (507-625-8228) The walleyes are biting on Lake Madison casting rattle taps and trolling crank baits/shad raps. Target the narrows and the SW end. On Washington Lake walleyes are biting out by Grassy Island or the 2nd point trolling with spinner rigs with crawlers in 14 feet of water. Blue Earth River walleyes are being caught in the deeper holes with a jig and fatheads. Bass are biting on Lake Washington using weedless rats and spinners pulling them out of the weeds.

METRO AREA EAST – Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle, Oakdale (651-777-2421) The St. Croix and the Mississippi are heating up as the temps cool down. Crappies are biting well by Bayport. Smallmouth bass bite is still going good. Muskies are being caught around Hudson. Look to Bald Eagle and White Bear lakes for walleyes. Make sure to check out the metro corner for more info from Josh.

MILLE LACS – Chris Kuduk's Guide Service, Chris Kuduk (320-630-1761) The bite has been improving once again. Most anglers are having their success on the rock and fishing shallow. Crankbaits at night have started to produce but the bite is not close to peaking. As the water temps begin to dip the fishing should only get better. We are also starting to hear some good muskie reports, maybe the best all year. Big perch are also being caught shallow on the rocks. This fall should be nothing short of phenomenal.

NISSWA - Dave’s Sportland Bait & Tackle, Jason, 2 miles south of Nisswa at the Intersection of Hwy 371 and Cty Rd 77, next to Schaefer’s Foods (218-963-2401) The fishing remains good in the area as we got our first taste of some true fall weather. The cold front may have slowed things a little, but it was just a bump in the road as most anglers are still having decent luck. The walleyes are most active on Gull Lake, North Long and The Whitefish Chain. Lindy rigs and redtail chubs continue to be the best tactic for boating a few walleyes. Fish slow and on the bottom. The bass are biting pretty good as well. Jigs and minnows are working for the bass. Pike anglers are catching fish on Rapalas or in line spinners. The fall is the best time of the year for both numbers of fish and the best time of the year for catching a trophy.

PARK RAPIDS – Delaney’s Sport Center, Kevin, East 1st St (218-732-4281) The walleyes are biting on Potato Lake using crawlers in about 18 feet of water. Northerns are hitting suckers on Big Sand Lake in around 7-8 feet of water. Target the bass using spinnerbaits up shallow. Bluegills are biting on the Crow Wing Chain in 12-14 feet of water on waxworms. Not too much heard on the crappie bite, not to say they aren’t biting.

PELICAN RAPIDS – Park Region Sport Shop, Lee Brenna, Intersection of Interstate 59 and 108 in downtown Pelican Rapids (800-962-8553) Reports in the area are all good. The walleyes have been biting on Lida, South Lida and Pelican Lake. They have been hitting spinner Lindy rigs tipped with fatheads and some have been using small suckers, but fatheads have been the bait of fisherman’s choice. They have been trolling in 18-20 foot of water and picking up the bonus smallmouth bass every once in a while. Some have been specifically targeting smallies using small spinnerbaits and casting up in the bull rush edges on Lida. Some nice smallies have been caught up to 4 pounds.

RAINY LAKE – Rainy Lake Tourism (1-800-FALLS-MN) Weather patterns are shifting. Walleye react to the change as well. Natural foods have diminished around the submerged reefs and structure where walleye foraged through the summer days. Plus, the days are shorter and nights cooler, shifting the thermal patterns in lake water. The advise is to try deeper water as fall progresses, but be ready to move around to find the spot where they are biting. The good news is, the walleye will become more aggressive feeders as we get deeper into fall. When you find them, you will get bites. Crappie have been biting, with reports of nice crappie catches in Sand Bay and Black Bay. Large northern pike can be caught along weedy edges. River fishing has been good in the areas with sufficient current, try Ranier Rapids, below the dam at International Falls, Manitou Rapids and the Long Sault.

SAINT CLOUD – Corky’s Gas & Bait , Main Street in Rockville (320-251-1567) Panfish are doing well. Waxworms are the ticket. Crappies are biting on Rice Lake with a flu-flu and a minnow in 14 feet of water. Walleyes are also biting on Rice Lake and Koronis in 14-20 feet of water using crawler rigs or jig and a minnow. Northerns are getting aggressive as the temps are cooler on all area lakes and hitting on sucker minnows.

SAINT CLOUD – Stop Light Bait, 8th Avenue SE, St. Cloud (320-255-9689) Walleyes are biting on the Mississippi River above the Sartell dam and below the 10th Street Dam. Beetle spins and jig and a minnow still seem to be the best baits. Walleyes biting on Rice, Koronis and the Horseshoe Chain on leeches and a Lindy rig.

SPICER - Mel’s Sportshop, Hwy 23 and Ruth Street (320-796-2000) Good walleye lakes this time of year are Eagle, Green and Long. Try crawlers or leeches. Sunfish have been biting in 10 feet of water on Florida, Games and North Long lakes.

STARBUCK - Minnewaska Bait, Larry Jensen, Hwy 29 near the Starbuck Marina (320-239-2239) Walleye bite is starting to become really consistent with the bite lasting all day and into the night. During the daytime, all methods are real producing from using live bait, jig and fatheads and spinner rigs, to deep running cranks in about 15-18 feet of water. In the evening the walleyes are moving up shallow in about 5-6 feet of water just off the bull rushes with shallow cranks with the best times right at dark and just after dark. Sunnies are still biting on waxworms and small leeches.

STILLWATER - Jimmy's Bait and Tackle, Stillwater (651-430-2554) St Croix walleyes are heating up. Target them in 22-26 feet of water using spinner rigs tipped with crawlers or a jig and a minnow. And there is a good late night bite going on for crappies on Carnelian Lake.

WACONIA - Mase’s In Towne Marine, Cindy, corner of Lake and Elm (952-442-2096) Some nice walleyes are coming in off the lake. A lot over 20 inches have been seen in the shop with a few up to 28 inches. They are targeting them on the deeper flats out by Keg’s Reef or North Reef using a jig and a minnow. Fall bite is also on for the sunnies and crappies. And fall pattern fishing has started for the muskies, early morning in the shallow weeds and moving deeper during the day.

WAYZATA - Wayzata Bait & Tackle, Tim or Bob, half mile west off I-494 on Hwy 12 (952-473-2227) Walleye bite picked up last week in 6-10 feet of water on a jig and a fathead and spinners. The bays that are producing are Browns, Smith, Wayzata and Excelsior. Northerns are hitting in 12-15 feet of water with yellow or chartreuse being the hot colors. Channel fishing just starting to pick up. Bass are still being caught shallow up under the docks using brown and black jig-n-pigs. Muskies are biting on the flats using small bucktails. Black and silver seem to be the hot colors. The crappie bite is spotty. Sunnies are biting on waxworms in 6-10 feet of water on the bottom. Look to Maxwell for panfish.

WINNIBIGOSHISH – Walleye Visions, Tom Neustrom, 21622 Airport Rd, Grand Rapids (218-327-2312) The cooler temps have made the walleyes a little more active and the reports all over the lake have been encouraging to say the least. There have been several different presentations that have been working on Big Winnie and needless to say they all seem to be producing fish. There are several different year classes, which is great for the future. The jig and minnow crowd is seeing increased activity, with the Northland Fireball (Parrot color) doing the most damage. Because the fish have been relatively shallow, the 1/8-ounce Fireball and even the 1/16 seem to be your best choices. Fish them in and around the weed beds in 6-8 feet of water, but don't be afraid to go as shallow as 4 feet. Nightcrawlers would be my second choice and pulling #5 Shad Raps would be a close third. The North Shore, East Side from Highbanks to Musky Bay, and Raven's Point have been the best spots to try. There are a lot of nice northern pike mixed in for those bonus fish, and several nice jumbo perch as well. The crappies are starting to show up in Big Cutfoot and that bite will get better and better as weeks go on. Man, I love the fall and everything is on the move. Get out and enjoy the fall fishing, it's a short period of time, but what a great season it truly is.
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