Published July 27, 2012, 06:00 AM


Trolling crankbaits with downriggers, lead-core line or three-way rigs in deep water throughout the main-lake basin has produced excellent walleye action. Pulling a crawler and spinner around the reefs and structure also has produced limits of walleyes.

By: Herald Staff Report, Grand Forks Herald


Trolling crankbaits with downriggers, lead-core line or three-way rigs in deep water throughout the main-lake basin has produced excellent walleye action. Pulling a crawler and spinner around the reefs and structure also has produced limits of walleyes.

Farther north, Scott Edman of Angling Adventures Guiding Service said fishing remains good in the Northwest Angle area. In Ontario waters, walleye anglers are still finding walleyes on the reefs in most areas. The Little Traverse area continues to produce numbers of above average-size walleye and a good shot at a trophy. Jigging or trolling spinners with minnows or crawlers is producing the best results.

In Minnesota waters, Edman said the reefs around McDonell Island, the flats west of Crowduck Island and structure in the Hay Island, Four Blocks, and Little Oak Island areas have been getting the most attention lately. Anglers willing to run a bit farther have been landing trophy-size walleye on the Bridges Island reefs. Use jigs, crankbaits or spinners depending on the structure and depth the fish are holding.

Muskie anglers have been seeing a lot of fish and landing quite a few, as well, Edman said. Many of the followers have been sluggish, and catch rates have been better during evening hours on the hot days or during periods of cooler weather. Topwaters and the Double Cowgirl-type bucktails have been working well. Bass and pike angling has taken a back seat to muskie fishing this week, but anglers pursuing them will do well casting to shorelines and points affected by current or wind, Edman said.


Fishing remains good, and walleyes are coming from a variety of depths, Devils Lake fishing guide Mark Bry reported. Walleyes are coming in all sizes, Bry said, but the majority of the fish have been in the 14- to 16-inch range. Walleye anglers also are catching incidental big pike and even the occasional perch, Bry said. Trolling crankbaits or live-bait rigs is producing the best action, Bry said, with most of the fish coming from 8 to 17 feet of water.


Catfishing on the Red River is challenging but good, and recent rains have improved the fishing slightly, Grand Forks catfish guide Brad Durick reported. Anglers are catching catfish of all sizes during the day. Some of the most productive daytime areas are snag piles smaller holes, break lines and any structure near current. At night, the fish are moving on the flats in the fast water and shallow along the bank. Shore anglers also have reported good nighttime fishing. Suckers and goldeyes are producing the best action, Durick said, but anglers should be sure to try a variety of baits to see what is working on a specific day.


Despite the hot weather and reduced fishing pressure, walleye reports remain favorable. Most walleyes are being taken on spinners and live bait or crankbaits in 4 to 7 feet. Walleyes also have been caught in 14 feet near the bigger rock humps. Anglers targeting northern pike are doing best in 3 to 6 feet of water with spoons, minnows or crankbaits.


Look for walleyes to hit crawlers or leeches in 15 to 25 feet of water off Diamond Point and the north end of Lake Bemidji. Lake Plantagenet is producing a few walleyes on crawlers in 20 to 24 feet. The deep weedlines of lakes Hattie, Beltrami and Little Turtle are producing bluegills. Muskies have become more aggressive, hitting topwater baits or bucktails during low-light periods on Bemidji, Big Lake and Wolf Lake.


Bigger walleyes are being found on the 25- to 30-foot humps in Walker Bay, with more eaters being caught on Shad Raps off Sand Point, Breezy Point and Agency Narrows in 10 to 14 feet of water. Crawlers are triggering walleyes in Traders Bay in 12 to 15 feet and the main-lake structure around the reefs such as Annex, Mokey, Huddles. Look for bass in any dense cover or rice areas of most bays, and the best muskie reports this week are coming off the rocks and points.


Walleye reports continue to be spotty, with some fish coming off the bars and humps in 16 to 24 feet of water. Anglers covering water with crankbaits or live-bait rigs are picking off better numbers of fish. Northern pike action is slow, and the best perch reports are coming on the 10- to 15-foot breaks and rocks.


Slip bobbers and leeches are producing a few walleyes during low-light periods along the 15- to 18-foot weedlines of Big Sand Lake and Long Lake. Northern pike are hitting sucker minnows in 12 to 14 feet of water on Big Mantrap Lake, Fish Hook Lake and the Crow Wing Chain. Bluegills continue to be caught in 14 feet on Toad Lake, Lake Belle Taine, Fish Hook and the Crow Wing Chain. Muskie anglers are reporting more follows than hook-ups with surface baits at Big Mantrap and Elk Lake. Anglers are finding rainbow trout suspended over deep water on Bad Medicine and Long lakes.