Ice conditions: still vary across the Northland. We have found as little as 8 inches on deeper larger bodies, but average ice across the area is ranging from 13’ to 20’ of “good and solid” ice. There are a few slush pockets since the warmer weather has started, but nothing too concerning. We do highly advise people to be careful around ice heaves with all the above average temps we have had lately, and always remember… “NO ICE IS EVER SAFE ICE!”
Walleyes: Walleye fishing has continued to improve across the area. Key areas to focus on are sunken humps and weed edges. In deeper, or heavy structured lakes, like Leech, the rocks are producing some bigger fish using either jigging spoons or set lines with shiner minnow or Light Pike Suckers.
Panfish: Crappies and Bluegills have been great along weed points. Finding the “green weeds” where still prevalent is going to lead to higher success. The basins are holding big circulating schools, but big the edges of those basins are producing the more active (and biggest) ones. Try small jigging spoons tipped with a waxie. If they still seem a bit reluctant, tie on a small tungsten jig with either a Clam Maki Plastic or Silkie.
Remember: TROUT OPENER IS THIS WEEKEND!!!! Here are some tips if you are heading out!
Lake Trout: Try depths of 30’ – 60’ of water. Particularly focusing on points, inside turns, deep humps and funnel areas. Lake Trout are a predator fish, these locations are prime areas in which they “push” baitfish into prior to feeding. 3” to 6” white, chartreuse, or pink tube jigs are some of the top choices, not to mention your heavy jigging spoon like the Clam Super Leech Spoon. But don’t forget about any lipless cranks, like a Rippin’ Rap or a Live Target. These have been doing quite well for us in recent years. Not only in producing numbers but size as well!
Rainbow, Brookes, and Browns: Try shallow areas with fallen trees or heavy structure along shoreline in 4’ to 8’ of water. If the lake has a shallow underwater point that has deeper water on both sides that will be best. Small spoons tipped with waxies or plastics is a great option.
Get outdoors, make memories, and bring the young ones along! They are the future of our sport!
Above all, get out there and “Break the Chain of Routine!”