OUTDOORS REPORT: Area fishing report
Lake of the Woods
Anchoring and pitching a jig and frozen shiner has produced a lot of walleyes in 12 to 19 feet of water at Twin Islands, Long Point, the Fields, Zippel Bay Reef, in front of Pine Island or in front of Morris Point Gap and Lighthouse Gap. Four-Mile Bay and the Rainy River are giving up plenty of walleyes as well. At the Northwest Angle, a jig and minnow is triggering walleyes in 5 to 30 feet of water on the Flag Island Flats and Little Oak Island in Minnesota waters, and Devil’s Elbow and Deepwater Bay in Ontario.
Walleye fishing is good, and most of the fish are being caught in shallow water fishing with either slip bobbers and leeches or casting crankbaits and soft plastics such as Northland Mimic Minnows, reports Jason Mitchell of Mitchell’s Guide Service. Anglers have had the best success targeting shallow banks and protected bays where water temperatures have been warmer, Mitchell said. Water temperatures are increasing with the warmer weather and the bite should only get better, Mitchell predicts.
Catfishing has gotten fairly tough over the past few days, reports Grand Forks catfish guide Brad Durick. He said a 15-degree rise in the water temperature in less than a week seems to have the fish in a bit of shock. The good news is they are showing signs of coming out of the funk as the conditions level off. The best technique, Durick said, is to fish structure and stay on the move until finding active cats. There is a lot of “picking and pulling” that will eventually turn into a bite, he said, and keeping the bait fresh will improve the odds of hooking up. Catfish will be spawning soon, the fish are feeding and river conditions are perfect. Don’t forget the bug spray, either, Durick advises — you are going to need it.
Upper Red Lake
A jig and minnow is putting limits of walleyes in boats along the shorelines and 5- to 9-foot breaks. The Tamarack River area also is producing walleyes, and many anglers are finding crappies mixed with the walleyes.
Shiner minnows are the ticket for walleyes in 6 to 9 feet on lakes Bemidji, Irving and Plantagenet. Crappies continue to be found in 5 to 8 feet on Lake Beltrami and Turtle River Lake.
Slip bobbers and leeches are producing walleyes and crappies in 8 to 12 feet of water on Blackduck Lake, while shiners are a good bet for walleyes in 6 to 12 feet on Island Lake. Lakes such as Gull, Pimushe and Rabideau are giving up a mixed bag of panfish in 8 to 10 feet of water.
Cass Lake area
The river mouths of Cass Lake, Lake Andrusia and Wolf Lake continue to produce walleyes during the evenings on shiners. The 6-foot gravel on the north end of Cass is producing walleyes as well. Look for crappies in 4 to 6 feet on Kitchi Lake, Andrusia and Cass, while Lake Thirteen is giving up big bass in shallow water. The 3- to 6-foot bulrushes on Cass are producing perch, and a spinner and minnow combination is working for pike in 6 to 8 feet on Cass, Wolf, Andrusia and Kitchi.
Light jigs tipped with shiner minnows continue to produce walleyes in 6 to 8 feet with some wind or in slightly deeper water when it’s calm. Trader’s Bay, the Meadows, Ottertail Point, and Oak Point are all worth hitting if the wind is blowing in to shore. Bass are now shallow in most bays, and crappies are showing up on the docks.
Northern pike and walleyes are taking shiner minnows in 6 to 9 feet of water on the north end, Little Stony Point, Highbanks area, Duck Pass, Raven’s Point and the Bird Houses. Look for perch in 10 to 12 feet off Rich’s Townsite or from Sugar Point to Raven’s Point.
The pencil reeds and shorelines of lakes Melissa, Sour, Deadshot Bay, Little Detroit, Big Detroit, Severson and Floyd all are holding panfish. Bass and northern pike are easy to catch on all lakes in 4 to 12 feet. Walleyes are being taken on leeches or shiners in 15 to 20 feet on Melissa, Lake Sallie, Upper Cormorant Lake, Big Cormorant Lake and Pelican Lake.
Park Rapids area
A jig and minnow is producing walleyes in 6 to 9 feet of water on lakes Itasca, Fish Hook, Island, Potato and Lower Bottle. Northern pike are hitting sucker minnows in 7 to 12 feet on Fish Hook and Island; bass are an easy catch in shallow water on all lakes, and the shallow reeds on the Crow Wing Chain are holding panfish.