Msg 1 Posted: 04:24 PM 12/12/06 (CST)
BEMIDJI Bluewater Bait & Sports, Mark Cook, 1 mile north of the Hwy 2 & 71 Intersection (218-444-2248) There is 4 to 6 inches of ice on most area lakes, should probably be a couple more inches by this weekend. Lot of good spearing reports coming in, and reports of good walleye action on Irving Lake. Pike Bay is also seeing some early ice action
BLACKDUCK - Timberline Sport & Tackle, Carl Adams, Junction of Hwy 71 and Blackduck Lake Rd (218-835-4636) Ice fishing all over on area lakes now. Most lakes have around 6 inches of ice with some lakes up to 8 or 9 inches. And with the rest of the week being in the 20s or colder, we expect 2 to 3 more inches on that by the weekend.
CHISAGO CITY Frankies Live Bait and Marine, Brad, Corner of Hwy 8 and Co Rd 77 (651-257-6334) Call for current reports!
CROSSLAKE - Holiday of Cross Lake, Lee (218-692-2708) We have 4 inches or more of ice in most spots. The crappies and walleyes are biting in all the normal winter spots. Walleyes are biting on Pelican in about 20 feet of water on gold and river shiners. Loon and Round Lake has some good crappie action going on right now too.
DULUTH - Fishermans Corner, Scott, 7 miles north of Miller Mall on Hwy 53 (218-729-5369) Boulder Lake had a bout 3 inches of ice and some guys where out catching some walleyes in about 8-9 feet of water. Loopers and cohos are going on Lake Superior from shore at the river mouths right now. French and Sucker rivers and Stony Point seem to be some of the hotter spots.
DULUTH - Marine General, 1501 London Road, on the edge of Lake Superior (218-724-8833) There is ice on all area lakes, 4 inches and up. The walleyes are biting in all the early ice spots. The St. Louis River is frozen over, but not good enough to walk on yet. Some back bays you can walk out on. The loopers and rainbow trout are biting good off shore. The further north you go, the better ice youll find.Fish and Pine Lake are two to target for early ice fishing.
GLENWOOD - Fish On Bait & Sport, Kyle, 201 S Franklin St, 2 blocks south of stoplights in Glenwood, (320-634-3667) BRING ON THE ICE! Fish On Bait and Sport reports Lake Minnewaska is iced over and portables and small ice shacks are on the ice! Early reports are showing really great panfish - mainly sunnies to start but I am sure the crappie bite will be going strong. Lake Minnewaska is a historical panfish lake and brings people in from along ways. Sunfish sizes this summer where fantastic with unlimited hand sized fish and we expect that to be similar for the ice fishing. There are numerous great spots on Minnewaska for sunfish and crappie but you will find most anglers along the bar between the Ballroom and Torgy's and then into the bay as well. I have not heard how the walleye bite is yet but every year the early bite is tremendous out from the beach and out along the bar. Fish On will have a good inventory of crappie minnows, fatheads, shiners, spearing decoys, waxies and much more. Stop in to see the newly remodeled store and latest fishing updates. We are located two blocks south of the stop lights. Pope County also has a lot of public land for anyone to come out and chase some roosters as well muzzleloading deer. Pope County promises to be a great destination for you this winter. Stop by and say hi! Thank you, God, for the ice!
GREY EAGLE - Nancys 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) Please call Rex for a report.
HACKENSACK - Swansons Bait & Tackle, Jim Tuller, Hwy 371 on the north end of Hackensack (218-675-6176) Some smaller lakes have up to 6 inches of ice, most have 4 inches. Some spearing guys are out and having descent luck. Leech Lake still had some open water last weekend by Walker, but should be all froze over by this weekend. Still, be cautious on the bigger lakes and remember no ice is safe.
KABETOGAMA-NAMAKAN Gateway Store, US Hwy 53 & CO Rd 122, 30 miles south of Intl Falls-Canadian border, Phil Hart (218-875-2121) Give us a call!
LAKE OF THE WOODS Area Tourism Bureau, Denelle, near junction of Hwy 11 and Hwy 172 in Baudette (1-800-382-FISH)The winter ice-fishing season has officially started! The ice is ready and the fish are biting, so head on up to Lake of the Woods and experience the thrill of ice fishing on the big lake. There is 9 inches of ice on the lake out to 10 feet, with 7 inches of ice after that. And Im happy to report that the water clarity is excellent, looks like its going to be a great year at Lake of the Woods. Fish are being caught in 15-20 feet of water; most anglers are using shiners 4-6 feet off the bottom to reel in the walleye. The low temperatures we have been experiencing here in the north country is adding 1-2 inches of ice per night. The Rainy River has 8 inches of ice at Four Mile Bay and around Pine Island. The bite is excellent in this area too, with fish being caught in 17-19 feet of water by Pine Island. Adrians Resort has reported that they have a marked trail from the bay to the lake that is being used by 4-wheelers, so load up that 4-wheeler and head up north to Lake of the Woods. Looking for a last minute getaway this weekend? Wanna beat the ice fishing rush? Due to the early ice this year area resorts have openings this weekend and would love the chance to show you our beautiful lake.
LEECH LAKE Andersons Resorts, Tim (1-800-516-0077) Please call Tim for a report.
METRO AREA EAST Blue Ribbon Bait & Tackle, Josh, Oakdale (651-777-2421) People in the metro are starting to get out on the ice. Tanners Lake had about 4 inches and Silver Lake has 4 to 5 inches. River fishing is spotty, some walleyes where still being caught, but the ramps are pretty iced up now. .
MILLE LACS Chris Kuduk's Guide Service, Chris Kuduk (320-630-1761) Silver Bay froze over last Saturday, some out catching some perch and a few walleyes. North Long Lake has a good panfish bite going now too. Check with the resorts before heading out.
MILLE LACS Malmo Market, Lynwood Elliott, State Hwy 47 and 18 East, NE corner of Mille Lacs (320-684-2295) Recent low temps have frozen the big lake over. Anglers are finding ice and having good early ice action. Most are fishing the East side as ice conditions seem better. Anglers are also finding ice on the smaller lakes north of Malmo which froze over about a week ago. Crappie action has been good, with limited walleye reports. Muzzle loader and bow hunters are finding more deer this week with the new snow. Grouse hunters have also been having good luck. We have switched over into ice fishing mode and are stocked up with the latest ice gear and bait. Ice is never safe, especially first ice.Always check in at a resort and ask if conditions are safe and follow their directions. Good luck, hope to see you soon.
LAKE MINNETONKA - Wayzata Bait & Tackle, Tim or Bob, half mile west off I-494 on Hwy 12 (952-473-2227) Guys have been out on Black Lake and Greys Bay. There is 3 to 5 inches of ice out there. Some walleyes are being caught on Medicine and Whitetail Lakes. Make sure to change your line on your ice fishing setups this year, stop in the shop for our best deals.
LAKE MINNETONKA Minnetonka Outdoors, Dallas or Gregg, south frontage road to Hwy 7 between Vine Hill Rd & Old Market Blvd in Shorewood (952-470-8800) Ice fishing has started with a few daring souls going out in the bays and smaller lakes. We think by this coming weekend the activity will increase quite a bit. Minnetonka still has quite a bit of open water. We really need the wind to die down to help it flash over completely. Wednesday and Thursday still had a couple of hard core musky fisherman going out. One man reported going out in the Grays Bay area and had a 42" on the line within 5 minutes of starting. He got the fish in and was safe back at home within 45 minutes. He said it wasn't even enough time to get cold. Reports so far have ranged from 2-4 inches in the smaller bays but there are still many spots with open water and ice conditions are still spotty. Please use caution if you attempt to go out on the early ice.
NISSWA - Daves Sportland Bait & Tackle, Jason, 2 miles south of Nisswa at the Intersection of Hwy 371 and Cty Rd 77, next to Schaefers Foods (218-963-2401) Call or visit our web site for a current report!
LAKE OSAKIS - Holiday Resort, Adam, 115 miles west of Twin Cities on I-94W, take 71N to Co Rd 10W to Falcon Dr in Osakis (320-859-4360) The whole lake is completely froze over with ice ranging from an inch on the North End to some of the shallow bays having up to five. It was a very spotty freeze up this year, so ice conditions will greatly vary for quite some time. Some reports of walleyes being caught, but have to sort through them to find fish over the fifteen inch minimum. In front of hill access on the north end, as well as Schultz's Bay, are spots where most fishermen are starting out.
PARK RAPIDS Delaneys Sport Center, Kevin, East 1st St (218-732-4281) Fishhook has walkable ice, should be 4 inches or more by this weekend. Theyve been catching walleyes out there in 19 to 21 feet of water. They are catching some bluegills on the Crow Wing chain in about 14 feet of water on waxies. Try Long Lake for northerns.
PELICAN RAPIDS Park Region Sport Shop, Lee Brenna, Intersection of Interstate 59 and 108 in downtown Pelican Rapids (800-962-8553) We have ice! Crappies are biting on South Lida. We have anywhere from 3 to 7 inches of ice. A little snow fell, but it has mostly blown off the lakes. Guys are having fun with tip-ups going after those northerns. A lot of muzzleloaders have been out chasing deer. The deer are actually starting to be more active during daylight hours now as the cold weather continues on.
RAINY LAKE Rainy Lake Tourism (1-800-FALLS-MN)Ice is forming on Rainy Lake, with some avid anglers getting out in areas of Sand Bay. Safety cant be stressed too much as the lake ices up. There is enough ice to support an angler and some simple gear, but taking any vehicle on the ice is out of the question, and anyone venturing on the ice should be checking the depth regularly. Areas with current can have thin ice just stones throw from ice thick enough to hold the weight. Just remember, there is no such thing as safe ice. Avid snowmobilers have been getting out on the trails; they have recently been cleared and have some 4 inches of snow. However, they are not described as good conditions yet. Although the lake is icing up, theres probably not enough ice to support a sled yet. The International Voyageurs Snowmobile Club has arrangements for a trail from International Falls to Rainy Lake via the village of Ranier. Be sure to follow the signs and obey all rules. The up-to-date trail conditions are reported at their website www.ridetheborder.com
RED WING Ike's Bait & Tackle, Ken, 2109 Old W Main St, Red Wing (651- 388-2111) People have been catching some crappies still in Bay Point Park at the dock. Pheasant hunters are still out and having pretty good luck. Call the shop for the best and latest reports.
SAINT CLOUD Stop Light Bait, 8th Avenue SE, St. Cloud (320-255-9689) We have reports of people fishing on Little Rock Lake and so far only perch have been biting. Anglers tell us that Sugar, Indian, Long and Crooked Lakes all have fishable ice on them. Also try Pearl Lake for some early northern and crappie fishing. People are also fishing on Briggs Lake in the bayou, on Julia and Elk Lakes for walleyes and northerns. Anglers are traveling to the Blackduck area, Deer River and Lake Alexander. Some anglers are also getting ready to fish for walleyes and crappies on the Mississippi above the Sartell dam. Spear fishermen say they have been getting some northerns on area lakes and rivers. People are also traveling to Red Lake and Lake of the Woods to fish for walleyes. We have a new line of hand-crafted spearing decoys in our store and we have sucker spearing decoys. Be careful on the ice.
SOUTH CENTRAL MINNESOTA Axel's Tackle Box, Axel, 2 blocks north of Hwy 60 on Hwy 13, next to Caseys, on Lake Sakatah in Waterville (507-362-4444) Saber, Sakatah and Elysian have 4 ½ to 5 inches ice. Tetonka bays should be fishable
guys out with tip-ups for northerns. Walleyes on Sakatah - we are just getting out now. This weekend should be a good one.
STARBUCK - Minnewaska Bait, Larry Jensen, Hwy 29 near the Starbuck Marina (320-239-2239) We are already seeing fish in the typical winter patterns. The walleyes have been biting out on the lake off Starbuck beach. We have about 5 to 7 inches of ice. Try with a shiner and plain hook or jig and a fathead. Some bigger house have been getting towed out with 4 wheelers on the Glenwood end, be safe out there.
STILLWATER - Jimmy's Bait and Tackle, Stillwater (651-430-2554) By the end of the week we should have 4 inches of ice. The river is iced over but not safe yet. Be careful and call for local conditions. We are now starting our regular winter hours of Mon Fri 7am 6pm, Sat. 6:30am to 6 pm and Sun. 6:30 am til 4 pm.
WACONIA - Mases In Towne Marine, Cindy, corner of Lake and Elm (952-442-2096) We got ice last week! Waconia Bay has 4 inches of ice as of last Tuesday. We should have 6 inches this weekend. The crappies and walleyes are biting now in 10 to 15 feet of water.
WINNIBIGOSHISH Walleye Visions, Tom Neustrom, 21622 Airport Rd, Grand Rapids (218-327-2312) Well, the colder weather that we have been waiting for has finally arrived and there are reports of good ice forming and the anticipation of ice fishing is finally here. Big Winnie is completely froze over and there are reports that some of the first anglers have been out on the ice this past weekend with the only reports of a few northern pike that have been speared in the Third River Flowage and out in front of Bowens but not very far out. The best thing to do is call ahead and get conditions before you start hauling all your gear up with you, like 4-wheelers and snowmobiles. Some of the smaller lakes in the area have started to see fishermen this last few days and the bluegill and crappie fishing has been okay, but there have been few reports as of yet. Next week we will have a better update, with more news, I'm sure. Thanks for all the folks that stopped by the St. Paul Ice Fishing Show to visit this past weekend. They had record crowds and everyone was sure in the mood for ice fishing. See you next week.