Everything should be working in the angler's favor for the fishing opener Saturday.
The forecast calls for light winds, little to no rain and, despite a statewide shortage, bait shops are well stocked with bait for the opener.
It will be warmer Saturday and Sunday, with temperatures between 65-70 degrees, and anglers should prepare for the possibility of some isolated showers, said Dean Melde, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Duluth.
For both Saturday and Sunday winds will be out of the south between 10-15 mph, picking up a little more Sunday.
The warmer air moving in could set off a few showers, but nothing major is expected, Melde said.
"It will be hit or miss (for rain)," Melde said. "If it does rain, it's definitely not going to be an all-day rain."
Area bait shops expect business to start to pick up later today, with the deluge coming Friday. Bob Miller, owner of Breezy Oasis Bait and Tackle and Munchies by the Lake in Breezy Point, said he didn't know what to expect for business because regular anglers may stay away from Pelican Lake with the Governor's Fishing Opener taking place there.
But, Miller said, he is ready for anything.
"We'll be in good shape," he said. "We're stocked up well." His store will
be open until midnight Saturday, and will open again at 4 a.m. Saturday.
One concern was a possible shortage on live bait. Miller said his bait supplier will be ready to deliver bait when needed.
Mike Blanch, owner of Koep's Bait Shop in Nisswa, said his store will be able to accommodate everyone, but people should try to get their bait as early as they can.
"We're OK, but go early and get it out of the way," he said. "Our bait wholesaler said it's in pretty short supply across the state, but we're set at Koep's."
It's not only live bait that draws the fish. Both Blanch and Miller said the hot seller thus far has been Rappala Tail Dancers. Miller said Lindy rigs and jigs will also be a popular choice for anglers.
Residents should expect to see increased traffic Friday, said State Patrol Capt. Joe Schueller. The State Patrol, along with other area law enforcement agencies, will be running Safe and Sober and NightCAP campaigns over the weekend, targeting people who drink and drive, don't use their seat belts or speed.
Though a busy weekend, Schueller said traffic usually isn't as heavy as on major holidays, like Memorial Day or the Fourth of July, and usually motorists aren't too much of a problem for troopers.
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