Gull Lake is still the area's best bet for walleyes in 15 to 28 feet of water. Redtail minnows, shiner minnows, and crawlers are producing the majority of fish. Bass and northern pike continue to provide very good action on most area lakes in eight to 20 feet of water. As a general rule, the bigger fish have been deeper. Sunfish are hitting small leeches and worms in 12 to 20 feet of water and crappie reports are improving daily on many area lakes in eight to 18 feet of water.
CASS LAKE AREA
The fall muskie bite hasn't quite kicked in yet on Cass Lake. There are a few fish coming off the cabbage beds, but the majority of them are content just following and not hitting baits. Walleye reports have also been limited over the past few days. The main lake bars are your best bet early and late in the day with crankbaits. Look to North Cedar Bar and the rock pile in 10 to 12 feet of water for better numbers of active fish.
Rabbit Lake is producing panfish in 20 feet of water. The majority of these fish have been suspended two to 10 feet off the bottom. Look to Serpent Lake for crappies in 28 feet of water as well. Bass are an easy catch under docks and along established weed edges on most area lakes. The bigger northern pike and quite a few trout are coming out of Portsmouth Pit and the Pennington Pit. Look to Rabbit Lake for walleyes with fathead minnows in 18 to 28 feet of water and the deeper holes of the Mississippi River are giving up a few nice walleyes as well.
Live bait rigs tipped with redtail minnows or nightcrawlers are producing walleyes in 20 to 26 feet of water on Cross Lake and Whitefish Lake during the day. Work the tops of the bars with crankbaits at dusk for better numbers of fish. The weedlines on many area lakes are holding northern pike and largemouth bass. Crappie anglers are finding a few fish suspended next to the weed edges in 14 to 18 feet of water.
Lake Pokegama and Sand Lake are giving up a few walleyes during the late afternoon and evening hours in 10 to 14 feet of water. Shallow running crankbaits are triggering the majority of fish. Look to Splithand Lake for consistent northern pike action along the deeper weed edges. Spider Lake is a safe bet for crappies and muskie anglers are finding a few active fish on Moose Lake. The grouse opener was tough as warm weather and thick foliage made for difficult hunting conditions.
Walleye and perch action is still going strong off Sugar Bar, Little Muskie Bar, Big Muskie Bar, and the back side of Long Bar in 16 to 22 feet of water. Crawlers seem to be working best during the day. There's also been some evening action closer to shore in 10 to 12 feet of water on crankbaits. Look to Raven's Point, the Third River area, and the south end of High Banks for numbers of northern pike.
LAKE OF THE WOODS
Along the south shore, anglers are live bait rigging in 16 feet of water near Pine Island and finding limits of walleyes to be common. The Gap area near Graceton Beach is also kicking out numbers of walleyes. Look deeper here, 30 to 34 feet, for better schools of good-sized fish. Walleye and northern pike action is still going strong in the bays of the Rainy River near Clementson. At the Northwest Angle/Islands area, the reefs remain the best bet for walleyes in 14 to 19 feet of water.
Many anglers are seeing plenty of fish on their locators, but they don't seem to be feeding with the exception of a limited evening bite. Live bait rigs tipped with crawlers or slow trolling crankbaits have worked best off sand Point, Five Mile Point, and in Steamboat Bay. Muskie fishing is also peaking during twilight hours off Pelican Reef, West Bar, and in the Grand Vu weedbeds.
East -- The shallow rock bite has been very consistent at night in eight to 15 feet of water. Slip bobbers and leeches or crankbaits have been a good bet. The best daytime action is still on deep structure with spinner rigs. Northern pike action has picked up on the shallow rocks off Grassy Island. Fish in the 30- to 40-inch class have been common this week. Wahkon Bay and the north end are producing muskies on crankbaits, spoons, and bucktails.
West -- There's been a little more walleye activity during midday hours on the deep flats. Spinner rigs tipped with minnows or leeches have worked best. The night bite remains the most consistent bet in 30 to 35 feet of water. The shallower, shoreline structure has also produced fish during the evening hours. Slip bobbers and leeches or crankbaits are the way to go during lowlight periods of the day. The bigger northern pike have started hitting among the weeds and you can count on most rock points to be holding smallmouth bass.
The inconsistent weather patterns are effecting the consistency in which the walleyes are biting. Big Pine and Little Pine Lake are the best bets in 12 to 22 feet of water. Minnows and crawlers are working best. Big Pine Lake is also producing quite a few crappies over one pound. The majority of these fish are coming from 30 feet of water. The sunfish bite remains strong on many area lakes as well.
The east end of the lake, near Blueberry Island and Kettle Falls, is still the best bet for numbers of bigger walleyes. Work the 30-foot reefs with minnows and jigs. Stoke's Bay and Black Bay are kicking out crappies in 14 to 20 feet of water. The Manitou area of the Rainy River is also worth noting for walleyes. The grouse season started slow, but there were a few birds shot. The people with dogs.
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