Minnesota Outdoor News Fishing Report — Feb. 17, 2017

LAKE MILLE LACS

East – Walleye action has been a bit more sporadic, but the number of big fish being caught remains strong. During the day, 25 feet or deeper has been best, and there has been some exceptional evening action in less than 12 feet. Look for perch in the bays over 10 to 15 feet, but pods of jumbos are being found over the deep basin areas in 30 feet or more. Sucker minnows continue to produce numbers of northern pike throughout the lake.

Johnson’s Portside (320) 676-3811

West – The mud flats, Sherman’s and Eight Mile in particular, continue to produce walleyes. Work the edges during midday hours and slide on top early and late each day. St. Alban’s Bay continues to produce walleyes in 22 to 24 feet as well. Look for jumbo perch off the deep side of the flats and sucker minnows continue to produce northern pike in the bays.

Terry’s Boat Harbor (320) 692-4430

LAKE OF THE WOODS

Electronics are a huge help for walleyes and sauger right now with many fish showing up 10 to 15 feet below the ice. Keep depths have been 29 to 33 feet on the main basin and there has been a few more jumbo perch in the mix. At the Northwest Angle, walleyes are hitting best early and late each day in 13 to 20 feet. Move off the structure in 22 to 30 feet during midday hours and crappie action remains strong over 30 feet or more.

Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau (800) 382-FISH

LAKE MINNETONKA AREA    

Small spoons and minnows are producing walleyes during the evening hours over 26 to 30 feet in the bigger bays of Lake Minnetonka. Look for crappies in 30 feet on Lake Independence or in 16 feet in the North Arm of Minnetonka. Sunfish remain active in 8 to 10 feet on Medicine Lake and in Black Lake on Minnetonka.

Wayzata Bait (952) 473-2227

LAKE VERMILION

Look for walleyes on the main lake reefs in 25 to 32 feet – the bite has been best early and late each day. Crappie reports have been limited to a few fish being taken above the dam, Stuntz Bay is a safe bet for northern pike in 9 to 11 feet, and the back side of Ely Island continues to produce perch in 12 to 15 feet.

Pike Bay Lodge (218) 753-2430

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH

Perch action remains strong in 15 to 18 feet towards Snaghole Bar to Hunter’s Hump, down to River Bar and Sugar Bar. Gold jigs are working best with a minnow or minnow head. A few walleyes are being caught off the bars in 25 to 30 feet, and northern pike remain active throughout the lake.

Lake Winnie Resort Association

LEECH LAKE

Perch action continues to improve around Sand Point, Goose Island, the Hardwood’s, and in Trader’s Bay. Tullibees also have started biting with fish being found suspended over 30 feet near Stoney Point. Walleye action has been more sporadic with the best reports coming off the 18- to 24- foot shoreline breaks in Walker Bay or the mid-depth rocks in the Trapper’s Landing area.

Reed’s Sporting Goods (218) 547-1505

Shriver’s Bait Company (218) 547-2250

RAINY LAKE     

Shiner minnows are turning walleyes and crappies in 28 to 32 feet in Sand Bay, Black Bay, and the American Narrows. The mouth of Black Bay has been the best area for bigger pike.

International Falls CVB (800) 325-5766

RED LAKE

Walleye reports have varied from poor to limits being caught. The 8- to 12- foot sand and gravel or 13- to 15- foot mud flats are giving up the most walleyes. There’s been a few more perch and crappies in the mix this week as well.

Mort’s Dock (218) 647-8128

Twin Cities Metro

WEST METRO

Look for crappies and sunfish on the north side of Lake Parley in 8 to 12 feet. Northern pike remain active on Eagle Lake, Lake Zumbra, and Hydes Lake in 12 feet. Whaletail Lake continues to produce crappies in 10 to 16 feet.

Cabin Fever Sports (952) 443-2022

SOUTH METRO

Perch continue to hit on Cedar Lake in 10 to 15 feet – work the cribs and sunken structure. Shiner minnows are producing northern pike in the 10- to 15- foot weeds on Thole’s Lake. Crappies and sunfish are being found suspended over 20 to 30 feet on Prior Lake and Spring Lake. A few walleyes are being caught on fatheads in 12 to 15 feet on Prior and Spring as well.

Prior Lake Bait & Tackle (952) 447-6096

LAKE WACONIA

Look for sunfish and crappies along the 13- to 16- foot weeds of Waconia Bay, Center Reef, and Pillsbury Reef. Waconia Bay also is producing pike in 12 to 14 feet. A few ‘eyes have bit after dark on Center Reef in 14 to 17 feet.

Mases In Towne Marina (952) 442-2096

Statewide

ALEXANDRIA AREA

Hit the Le Homme Dieu Chain and Lake Miltona in 21 to 25 feet for a few walleyes during low-light periods. Miltona also is producing sunfish in 10 to 15 feet, Lake Ida is kicking out crappies in 12 to 20 feet, and Lake Geneva is giving up crappies in 12 to 15 feet. Reno Lake gives up an occasional walleye and some crappies over 20 to 25 feet.

Christopherson’s Bait and Tackle (320) 763-3255

ANNANDALE AREA

Look for sunfish in 10 to 16 feet on Lake John, Granite Lake, and Lake Marie. Crappies are biting best during low-light periods over 20 to 25 feet at French Lake, Pleasant Lake, and Granite. Walleye reports have been limited, but northern pike remain active on Clearwater Lake, Maple Lake, and Cedar Lake in 12 to 16 feet.

Little Jim’s Bait (320) 274-5297

BATTLE LAKE AREA

A few walleyes continue to come off Rush Lake and Otter Tail Lake in 9 to 25 feet or West Battle Lake in 35 to 55 feet. Sunfish are being caught over 10 to 17 feet and crappies are suspended over 20 feet at Buchanan Lake, Stalker Lake, Blanche Lake, Rush, and West Battle. Northern pike are an easy catch on most lakes in 15 to 20 feet and a few tullibees are being caught on Mollie Stark Lake over deep water.

Ben’s Bait Shop (218) 864-5596

BEMIDJI AREA

The main lake flats on Lake Irving are producing perch, whitefish, and northern pike in 15 feet. The 20- to 50- foot structure on Lake Bemidji continues to kick out jumbo perch and Grace Lake is a safe bet for bluegills and crappies in less than 20 feet.

Taber’s Bait (218) 751-5781

BLACKDUCK AREA

Look for perch on the 20- to 22- foot mud of Blackduck Lake or 15 to 20 feet on Island Lake. Look to Gull Lake and Pimushe Lake for bluegills in 16 to 20 feet and crappies over 20 to 30 feet. Northern pike continue to hit on most lakes in 12 to 18 feet, while Island and Blackduck are giving up a few walleyes in 18 to 22 feet.

Timberline Sports and Tackle (218) 835-4636

BRAINERD/NISSWA AREA 

Look for walleyes to hit shiner minnows in 17 to 38 feet on the north end of Gull Lake. Crappies are biting in 8 to 16 feet on North Long Lake, Nisswa Lake, Hubert Lake, and Gull. You’ll find bigger sunfish in shallow water on Sullivan Lake, Cullen Lake, and Nisswa. Shiners are producing northern pike in 8 to 26 feet on the south end of Gull, North Long, Cullen, and Whitefish Lake.

S & W Bait & Guide Service/Nisswa Guide League  (218) 829-7010

CASS LAKE AREA

Deadman’s Bar and North Cedar Bar on Cass Lake are producing walleyes in 18 feet. Allen’s Bay on Cass also is kicking out walleyes and northern pike in 30 feet. Hit Wolf Lake for crappies over 30 to 35 feet, while the east side of Pike Bay Lake is giving up perch and a few walleyes in 28 to 30 feet.

Sunset Cove Resort (800) 279-4831

CHISAGO AREA   

Sunfish and crappies are hitting in the 8- to 12- foot weeds at Chisago Lake and the north end of North Center Lake. Crappies are biting on South Lindstrom Lake in 10 to 12 feet. A few ‘eyes continue to bite in the channel on Chisago in 8 to 12 feet. Pike are biting on most lakes in 6 to 12 feet.

Frankie’s Bait (651) 257-6334

CROSBY AREA

Small spoons tipped with wax worms are producing rainbow and brown trout at Huntington Pit and Section Six Pit in less than 30 feet. On the Manuel Pit, anglers are finding suspended rainbow trout over 80 feet or more. Look to the weedlines of Serpent Lake for northern pike or 20 to 28 feet during low-light periods for a few walleyes. Milford Lake is giving up a mixed bag of panfish in 17 to 25 feet, Island Lake is producing crappies over 30 to 35 feet, and sunfish are hitting on Mahnomen Lake in 12 feet.

Oars ‘n Mine Bait and Tackle (218) 546-6912

DETROIT LAKES AREA

Lakes such as Little Detroit, Height of Land, and Floyd are producing sunfish and a few crappies in 11 to 15 feet. Northern pike are hitting in 10 to 12 feet on Lake Melissa and Lake Sallie. Crappies also can be had on Cotton Lake over 12 to 14 feet, and walleye action continues to be limited to a few fish after dark on Big Detroit Lake in 20 to 25 feet.

Quality Bait and Tackle (218) 844-2248

DULUTH AREA   

Walleye reports have been limited, but crappies are biting during the evening hours on Fish Lake over 20 feet.  The Kimball Bay area on the Wisconsin side of the St. Louis River is producing crappies in 12 to 14 feet. Anglers fishing from shore are catching cohos in the  French River area of Lake Superior.

Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094

EMILY AREA 

Pike are hitting sucker minnows in 10 to 15 feet on Upper Dean Lake. The north end of Lake Washburn is giving up walleyes in 30 to 40 feet during low-light. Greer Lake is a safe bet for sunfish in 20 to 25 feet, while Molten Lake is producing crappies over 20 feet.

Redding Sports and Spirits (218) 763-2191

FAIRMONT AREA

Crappies and a few bluegills are being found in 15 to 19 feet on Hall Lake, Budd Lake, and Lake Sissiton. Big Twin Lake is giving up perch, but walleye and northern pike reports have been limited.

Sommer Outdoors (507) 235-5225

GRAND MARAIS AREA

Lake trout are hitting minnows and jigs at Greenwood Lake at 40 to 45 feet and Trout Lake in 50 to 55 feet, while preserved minnows are working best on Duncan Lake in 45 to 50 feet. Wax worms are turning splake at Mink Lake in 15 feet and Musquash Lake in 10 to 15 feet. Leo Lake is giving up rainbow trout on minnows in 18 to 20 feet.

Buck’s Hardware (218) 387-2280

GRAND RAPIDS AREA 

Crappies and sunfish continue to be caught on Little Cutfoot Sioux Lake in 20 feet and in slightly shallower water on Big and Little Splithand lakes, and Tioga Bay on Lake Pokegama. Big Cutfoot Sioux is giving up crappies over 20 to 35 feet, and Bowstring Lake is a safe bet for perch in 15 to 18 feet. Look to Kraemer Lake, Taylor Lake, and Moonshine Lake for stream trout and to the Canisteo Pit for lake trout.

Ben’s Bait and Tackle (218) 326-8281

GREY EAGLE AREA

Pine Lake started giving up sunfish and crappies in 15 to 19 feet. Look to Big Swan Lake for sunfish in 16 to 18 feet and in 28 to 30 feet for crappies. Big Birch Lake is producing a few walleyes in 40 to 50 feet and some crappies over 30 to 40 feet.

Nancy’s Bait & Tackle (320) 285-2405

HACKENSACK AREA 

The bays on Woman Lake are producing perch, northern pike, and a few bluegills in 10 to 14 feet. Look for crappies over 30 to 40 feet during the evening hours and bluegills during the day in 14 feet at Webb Lake and Pleasant Lake. Lindsey Lake started giving up panfish straight out from the access as well.

Swanson’s Bait and Tackle (218) 675-6176

HIBBING/CHISHOLM AREA

Crappies are being caught in 18 feet of water on McQuade Lake and 24 to 26 feet on McCormick Lake. Sucker minnows continue to produce northern pike in 13 to 15 feet at Side Lake, while the Kinney Pit remains a safe bet for rainbow trout.

Lucky 7 General Store (218) 254-7168

LONGVILLE AREA

Crappies are being found suspended over 27 feet on Webb Lake or over 30 feet on Boy Lake. Look to Lake Inguadona for sunfish in 8 feet and there is an evening sunfish and crappie bite on Girl Lake in 16 to 22 feet.

The One Stop (218) 363-2252

MORA AREA

The north end of Knife Lake is producing crappies and sunfish during the evening hours in 8 to 10 feet of water. Reports from other lakes continue to be limited.

Jerry’s Sport & Bait Shop (320) 679-2151

ORTONVILLE AREA

The perch bite has been a bit less consistent this week, but anglers willing to stay mobile seem to be catching fish. The best reports continue to come from 11 to 13 feet of water on the southern half of the lake for perch and some bluegills.

Artie’s Bait (320) 839-2480

PARK RAPIDS AREA

An occasional walleye is caught from 20 to 30 feet of water during low-light periods at Potato Lake, Fish Hook Lake, and Long Lake. Northern pike remain active on Fish Hook in 12 feet and Big Mantrap Lake in 10 to 12 feet. The Crow Wing Chain of Lakes is kicking out bluegills in 12 to 14 feet, and you’ll find suspended crappies at night over 20 to 30 feet on Big Mantrap.

Delaney’s (218) 732-4281

Smokey Hills Outdoors (218) 237-5099

PERHAM AREA

Look for bluegills in 12 to 14 feet and suspended crappies over 20 to 24 feet on Star Lake, Dead Lake, Bear Lake, and Little McDonald Lake. Northern pike continue to be active in the 12- to 14- foot weeds of most lakes, but walleye action has been slow.

Gene’s Sport Shop (218) 346-3355

RED WING AREA

Ice fishing reports have been limited, but the Mississippi River continues to kick out walleyes and sauger. A jig tipped with a minnow or plastic is working best in 14 to 18 feet from Red Wing to the dam.

Four Seasons Sports (651) 388-4334

RICHMOND/ST. CLOUD AREA

Crappies are being found suspended over 20 feet on Cedar Island Lake, as are sunfish on Schneider Lake in 3 to 8 feet. Hit Pearl Lake in 12 to 14 feet or the shallow and deep weeds on Eden Lake for crappies and sunfish. Crappies continue to be caught on Rice Lake in 18 to 20 feet, and a few walleyes are being caught at Cedar Island and Horseshoe Lake in 6 to 18 feet.

Channel Marine and Sports (320) 597-5975

SAUK CENTRE AREA

The north end of Lake Osakis continues to produce crappies and sunfish in 18 to 20 feet and there are crappies being caught on the south end in 18 to 25 feet as well – grass shrimp and hole hopping helps. Hit Smith Lake for sunfish in 10 to 12 feet of water and Maple Lake for sunfish and crappies 10 to 12 feet or 22 feet. Look for crappies on Long Bridge Lake in 14 feet, Latimer Lake in 22 to 30 feet straight out from the access, and the north end of Sauk Lake in 22 to 45 feet. Sauk also is giving up walleyes in 8 to 12 feet during the evening hours.

Fletcher’s Bait Shop (320) 352-2155

STAPLES/LITTLE FALLS AREA

Crappies continue to hit on Sullivan Lake in 15 feet, and Platte Lake is producing sunfish in shallower water. Look to Beauty Lake for a mixed bag of panfish and Thoroughfare Bay on Lake Alexander is giving up a few crappies, but not with any consistency.

Da Fishin’ Hole (320) 631-0056

STARBUCK AREA

Lake Emily is giving up a few walleyes early and late each day in 5 feet. Long Lake near Morris is producing crappies during low-light periods in 12 to 14 feet. Northern pike continue to hit throughout Lake Minnewaska in 12 to 14 feet and crappies have started hitting on the Glenwood end of Minnewaska in 15 to 17 feet.

Minnewaska Bait and Tackle (320) 239-2239

WILLMAR AREA

Willmar/Foot Lake is producing panfish and an occasional walleye in 10 to 25 feet. You’ll find crappies by the big island on Nest Lake or in 15 to 20 feet on Norway/Games Lake. Eagle Lake is giving up panfish in 15 to 18 feet, as are lakes George, Elkhorn, and Henderson in shallower water. Look to Lake Lillian and Big Kandi Lake for perch in less than 10 feet.

Brad’s 71 Bait and Sports (320) 235-4097

WINDOM/MARSHALL AREA

Walleyes and perch are hitting in 4 to 7 feet on Lake Sarah, Lake Shetek is giving up walleyes in 4 to 6 feet, and East Twin Lake is worth noting for perch and walleyes in 5 to 8 feet. Bloody Lake started producing crappies in 10 to 12 feet, and Lac qui Parle Lake is kicking out crappies, northern pike, and walleyes in 4 to 10 feet.

Borch’s Sporting Goods (507) 532-4880

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