The evening walleye bite is consistent, tight to the weed edges, on lakes Miltona, Darling, Carlos, Reno, Mary, and Ida. Lake Le Homme Dieu, Maple Lake, Mary, and the north end of Ida are providing steady crappie action during low-light periods. Ice depths range from 7 to 14 inches.
Cedar Lake started kicking out crappies over 40 feet. The best walleye reports are coming from 18 to 24 feet on French Lake, Sugar Lake, and Lake Sylvia. Clearwater Lake is producing sunfish, pike, and walleyes in 12 to 20 feet. Look to Lake John for pike and sunfish in shallow water. Lake Marie and Dans Lake also have produced sunfish. Expect 8 to 16 inches of ice on area lakes.
Walleyes and a few perch are hitting on Otter Tail Lake in 15 to 20 feet. Jigging spoons or small sucker minnows on setlines have worked best for the walleyes. West Battle Lake is kicking out walleyes in 15 to 20 feet or 30 to 35 feet. Look for crappies on the west side of West Battle in 16 to 20 feet. Wall Lake, West Leaf Lake, Blanche Lake, Dead Lake, and South Turtle Lake are producing sunfish in 9 to 14 feet. Lakes such Clitherall, Otter Tail, and North Turtle are safe bets for northern pike in shallow water. ATVs and snowmobiles remain safe modes of transportation.
Ice depths are varied with 6 to 14 inches on most lakes. Walleye action has picked up on Lake Bemidji and Lake Plantagenet in 18 to 20 feet. Look for some perch in 20 to 30 feet on these lakes as well. The smaller lakes are producing bluegills, but crappie reports are limited. Tip-ups and sucker minnows are turning pike on the weedlines of Bemidji.
Walleyes are active on Blackduck Lake during the evening in 12 to 18 feet. The perch are hitting on deep mud of Blackduck over 20 to 25 feet. You'll find suspended crappies over 30 to 40 feet at Gilstead Lake. Pimushe Lake started giving up bluegills and crappies in shallower water. ATVs and snowmobiles continue to be the safest travel options due to slush and varying ice depths.
Most lakes have 5 to 11 inches of ice. Gull Lake is kicking out walleyes during the evening in 16 to 24 feet. North Long Lake and Pelican Lake have produced walleyes in 20 feet on setlines and shiner minnows. Glow jigs and rosy red minnows are turning crappies on lakes Margaret, Roy, and North Long. Big sucker minnows are the ticket for pike in 10 to 20 feet on Gull Lake.
Cass Lake area
Ice conditions on the big lakes are still "iffy" with varying ice depths and slush. The Stoney Point area of Cass Lake is producing perch in 10 feet. Pike Bay Lake and Lake Andrusia are kicking out northern pike in shallow water. Big Wolf Lake is worth noting for walleyes in 15 to 20 feet.
The north end of North Center Lake and South Lindstrom Lake continue to give up walleyes in 14 to 20 feet. The south end of Chisago Lake is producing pike and sunfish over eight to 10 feet. On North Center Lake, anglers are finding consistent sunfish action in 12 feet of water. Ice conditions are improving, with ATV traffic a safe option.
Shiners and rainbow minnows are producing walleyes in 18 to 20 feet on Serpent Lake and Pelican Lake. Northern pike are active in the shallows of most lakes and panfish are hanging in the deeper, green weeds on most lakes with Mahnomen and Little Black Hoof leading the way. Most lakes are now "ATV safe" with up to one foot of ice taking hold.
Detroit Lakes area
Walleyes are active during low-light periods on Big and Little Detroit, Lake Sallie, and Lake Melissa in 11 to 20 feet. Crappies are being found in 18 feet on Big Detroit and Melissa. Sunfish are tight to the shallow weeds on Height of Land Lake, Island Lake, and Little Detroit. Look for northern pike in 12 feet or less on most lakes. There's still slush on the ice making travel difficult for ATVs.
The small lakes are covered with slush and travel is difficult. The Highbanks area of Fish Lake is producing evening crappies in 15 feet. Shiners are producing walleyes and a few northern pike on Boulder Lake in 10 to 12 feet. If you can handle the slush, Rice Lake is kicking out northern pike in 6 feet of water.
Northern pike are hitting shiner minnows in 6 feet on the north end of Fremont Lake. On Baxter Lake and Elk Lake, you'll find sunfish and crappies in 10 feet. Blue Lake and Green Lake started giving up walleyes and crappies in 17 to 22 feet. Ice depths are favorable for snowmobile and ATV travel.
Shagawa Lake and Birch Lake remain the area's best walleye options in 18 to 20 feet. Good-sized crappies remain active at One Pine Lake, Farm Lake, and Low Lake during the evening hours. Northern pike can be had in the bays of most lakes. Ice depths vary, but up to 10 inches is being found on many lakes.
Walleyes and crappies are hitting on Hall Lake over 20 to 23 feet. Look to Cedar Lake and Hall Lake for walleyes during the evening. Ice depths vary with up to 12 inches on some lakes, but there are spots of open water on other lakes due to aeration systems.
Consistent walleye action is reported off Roberds Lake in 15 to 18 feet and at Shields Lake in 12 to 15 feet. You'll find suspended crappies over 20 feet on Shields and over 30 feet on Lake Mazaska. Tip-ups and minnows set on the weedlines of West Cedar Lake are the ticket for pike. Look for sunfish in 16 feet in Kaderlik's Bay on Shields Lake. Vehicles have started being used on area lakes, just watch for pockets of slush.
Forest Lake area
Willow Point on Forest Lake is providing numbers of northern pike in 12 to 15 feet. There's some evening walleye action at Clear Lake in 15 to 20 feet. Green Lake remains a safe bet for crappies in less than 10 feet of water. Ice depths remain inconsistent, but ATVs are being used on most lakes.
Grand Rapids area
Lake Pokegama and Big Cutfoot Sioux Lake are producing walleyes during low-light periods in 15 to 30 feet. Crappies are suspended in 20 feet of water on Little Ball Club Lake and Big Splithand Lake. The deep water in Sylvan Bay on the Mississippi River is a safe bet for crappies. Spearers and anglers are finding pike in the shallows of most lakes. There's slush to deal with, but ATVs and snowmobiles are being used in the area.
It's difficult to travel on most small lakes due to the slush. On the bigger lakes, 3 to 12 inches of ice is reported. The only fishing worth noting is at Birch Lake where sunfish and small pike are hitting during the day and there is some crappie action at night.
Ice thickness varies greatly and there is some slush. Walleye action is limited as many of the main-lake reefs are tough to reach due to ice conditions. The most consistent reports are coming from pike anglers in the bays.
Lake Mille Lacs
East - You have to do some sorting, but perch continue to be caught in Isle, Cove, and Wahkon bays in 9 to 12 feet. Walleye action is limited with a few fish hitting during low-light periods on Boot and Blue Jug flats. ATVs and snowmobiles are now an option on most of the lake, just watch the slush-covered areas.
West - Snowmobiles are a better option than ATVs due to slush. There are walleyes coming off the Seven Mile, Eight Mile, and Seguchie's Flat. Work the edges during the day and slide on top during low-light periods with jigging spoons. A few good-sized perch have started showing up on the flats as well.
Lake Minnetonka area
There's a steady walleye bite with jigs and fathead minnows in 30 feet on Lake Minnetonka. Work the big bays during low-light periods. Anglers on Lake Independence are catching walleyes in 18 feet with shiner minnows. Look for northern pike at the Arcola Bridge, Grays Bay, and Carsons Bay on Minnetonka over 14 feet. The Black Lake, North Arm, and Spring Park areas are producing sunfish in 8 to 10 feet. Expect 4 to 12 inches of ice throughout most lakes.
Lake of the Woods
Walleyes continue to hit during the morning and evening around Pine Island in 20 to 30 feet. There's also some evening action in the Clementson Rapids area of the Rainy River in 15 to 18 feet. Gold or colored-glow jigging spoons are best. At the Northwest Angle, walleyes are being caught in 24 to 26 feet around Oak Island and Flag Island.
Northern pike are running at a good pace in the shallows of Town Bay and Two Mile Bar. The north end of the lake is producing walleyes in 18 to 30 feet during low-light periods. The crappie bite has slowed, but the north end is producing sunfish in 18 to 22 feet. Eurolarvae has worked best on green or red glow jigs. Vehicle traffic is not advised with ATVs and snowmobiles being the best bets on the 12 inches of ice that exists.
Setlines and small sucker minnows are producing walleyes along the 19- to 24-foot shoreline breaks. Some bays are giving up walleyes in similar depths. Tip-ups and sucker minnows are turning pike in the bays over 9 to 14 feet. The bays also are worth noting for sunfish. Ice depths vary and caution is still advised throughout this region as a result.
The 11- to 13-foot weed edges of Center Reef and Pillsbury Reef are holding crappies. The weedlines in Waconia Bay are holding panfish, pike, and a few walleyes. Anderson's Reef is the best option for walleyes in 12 to 17 feet. Look for a few pike off Harm's Point in 11 to 14 feet. You'll find 10 to 15 inches of ice, but slush remains an issue in some areas of the lake.
Walleyes and perch are being caught, but the bite is different each day as far as consistency. Better areas this week have been on Horseshoe Bar in 26 to 32 feet or near the two sunken islands north of Big Muskie Bar in 20 to 24 feet. You'll find pike in these areas as well. Main roads are plowed, but scattered slush is found once you're off the main roads.
Leech Lake area
Work the 25- to 28-foot humps in Walker Bay for walleyes. The 12- to 14-foot weedlines off Pine Point are kicking out walleyes as well. The best perch reports are coming off Pine Point in 12 to 14 feet. Work Shingobee Bay in 12 feet for bluegills during the day and crappies at night. Ice depths remain varied from 5 to 11 inches so ATVs and snowmobiles are the best options.
Loon Lake started giving up walleyes during low-light periods in 12 feet. Work the weedlines of Lake Francis for northern pike and a few walleyes have been pulled from Lake Washington in 12 to 14 feet. Baker's Bay and Mud Bay on Lake Washington are giving up panfish. Most lakes offer 11 to 13 inches of ice and good travel is reported in the area.
The south end of Big Stone Lake is kicking out perch in 12 feet. On the north end of the lake, the Meadowbrook and State Park areas are producing walleyes during the evening in 12 to 13 feet. Look to Long Tom Lake in 8 to 10 feet for walleyes and crappies. Oliver Lake and Lake Lac qui Parle have kicked out crappies as well. The slush is now mostly gone and 10 to 16 inches of ice is reported.
Park Rapids area
Fatheads and setlines are producing walleyes at Fish Hook Lake in 18 feet. Fifth Crow Wing Lake is providing steady northern pike action in 12 to 14 feet. Look to Straight Lake in 14 to 16 feet for bluegills and crappies. Ice conditions are improving now that the slush has started to freeze.
Walleye action has picked up during the evening in several areas. Leading the way is Birch Point in 26 to 28 feet, American Narrows in 30 to 35 feet, and Rainy Lake City in 24 feet. Look for pike in the Rainy Lake City area. Five to 12 inches of ice is reported so snowmobiles are the best option for travel.
Roads have started being plowed over 14 to 18 inches of ice. Walleye action has been very good throughout the lake in five to 14 feet of water. Crappie reports are limited, but the big pike continue to be active in 4 to 6 feet near the Tamarack River.
St. Cloud/Eden Valley area
Look for walleyes and crappies on Browns Lake, Long Lake, and Cedar Island Lake in 14 to 22 feet. Becker Lake, Pearl Lake, and Goodner Lake are safe bets for sunfish in eight to 12 feet. Lake Koronis and Rice Lake are producing walleyes during the evening in 12 to 30 feet. Northern pike activity has slowed, but the shallows of most lakes continue to produce small fish. Ice depths range from 10 to 14 inches on most lakes.
Sauk Centre area
Crappies are suspended in Sauk Lake over 30 to 34 feet. Lilly Lake is kicking out sunfish in 26 feet. There is some evening walleye action on Sauk Lake in 12 to 16 feet, on Maple Lake in 15 feet, and on Big Swan Lake in 20 to 22 feet. Most lakes are now "four-wheeler" safe with limited slush.
Walleye action has slowed, but sunfish are biting. Work Lake Minnewaska in 12 to 14 feet in Bottle Bay. Northern pike and largemouth bass have been inhaling sucker minnows in this area. A few crappies can be had during the evening on Minnewaska in 15 feet. Lakes Villard, Levin and Amelia are producing panfish. Vehicle traffic has started on several lakes with up to 18 inches of ice reported on Minnewaska.
NORTHEAST METRO - Panfish action has picked up in 8 to 16 feet on lakes Peltier and White Bear. Lake Phalen and White Bear Lake are producing walleyes during low-light periods in 20 feet. Look to lakes like Demonterville, Bald Eagle, and White Bear with shiner minnows for pike in 12 feet. Ice depths range from 10 to 12 inches on area lakes and ATVs are being used.
WEST METRO - Sunfish action is strong on Pelican Lake, the south and northeast ends of Prior Lake, and Lake Minnewashta in 12 feet. Look for crappies on Wasserman Lake in 18 feet, Hydes Lake in 12 feet, and Lake Susan in 14 feet. Northern pike are hitting on Lake Auburn in 14 to 16 feet and at Minnewashta in front of the picnic area in 12 feet. Ice depths vary from 6 to 12 inches on most lakes.
The swimming beach area of Lake Tetonka is producing perch and crappies in 12 to 15 feet. The east end of Lake Sakatah is producing northern pike in shallow water. There's decent panfish action on the west side of Lake Francis in 15 feet of water during the early morning and afternoon hours. There is some slush to deal with on area lakes, but ATVs are safe means of transportation.
Look to Long Lake for perch and walleyes in 9 to 13 feet. The 40-foot hole on Eagle Lake is producing walleyes and crappies. On the east side of Diamond Lake, walleyes, crappies, and perch are being found in 15 feet or less. Look to Lake Calhoun for panfish and pike and Norway/Games Lake is a safe bet for panfish as well.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.