Published August 10, 2012, 06:00 AM


Limits of walleyes continue to be taken with spinner rigs and crawlers in 30 to 32 feet of water in Big Traverse Bay. Anglers jigging and pulling crankbaits are finding schools of active walleyes scattered from the Lighthouse Gap to Rocky Point up to Garden Island.

By: Herald Staff Report, Grand Forks Herald


Limits of walleyes continue to be taken with spinner rigs and crawlers in 30 to 32 feet of water in Big Traverse Bay. Anglers jigging and pulling crankbaits are finding schools of active walleyes scattered from the Lighthouse Gap to Rocky Point up to Garden Island.

In the Northwest Angle area, Scott Edman of Angling Adventures Guiding Service, said the reefs near Skeet Island in Ontario waters have been very good, with daily catches of more than 100 fish per boat. The overall average size will be smaller than other areas of the lake, Edman said, but anglers still can expect to throw back a lot of “keeper”-size walleyes in a day. Rock piles topping out from 20 to 35 feet have held the most fish, Edman said, and the walleyes are hitting jigs tipped with minnows, crawlers or soft plastics.

Elsewhere in Ontario, the rock reef bite has slowed considerably and likely will remain that way, barring any extended spell of high temperatures, Edman said. Walleyes have begun the “transition” period, moving from the reefs to shorelines and points. Anglers who fish shallow shoreline rock and weed lines or deeper points and dropoffs will have the best action, Edman said, and they can expect some bonus perch and crappies, as well.

Fronts and wind have hampered fishing in Minnesota waters at the Angle, but anglers dragging spinners along the deeper structure or long-lining crankbaits on shallower rock flats will find scattered schools of fish. Edman suggests trying points and reefs near Oak and Little Oak islands and the shallow boulder areas around Crowduck, Hay, Little Massacre and Garden islands.


Fishing remains good, and anglers are enjoying one of the best summers of walleye action in memory, both for numbers and size, according to Mitchell’s Guide Service. Anglers are catching fish with a variety of techniques, but trolling bottom bouncers and spinners along weed lines has been especially effective. Look for the action to continue, and perhaps even improve, as fall approaches and fishing pressure subsides.


Catfishing on the Red River has been a mixed bag, of late, Grand Forks catfish guide Brad Durick reported. One day it is outstanding, with good numbers of big fish, and the next day there are few or no big fish. Smaller cats will pick up the slack when the bigger fish aren’t hitting. Snags seem to be producing good numbers of fish with the occasional trophy mixed in, Durick said, while deeper troughs (especially near wood) with some current are showing the best action for bigger fish. The recent cool nights seem to have slowed the fish down a bit, so anglers should give spots a few extra minutes before moving. As water temperatures stabilize, anglers can speed up the move times again. Sucker is the best bait, overall, though fish also are showing a preference for frogs and goldeyes some days. Mix it up and see what works best.


Most shorelines are giving up walleyes in 4 to 6 feet of water, mainly on crankbaits or spinners and crawlers. Recent cold fronts and windy conditions have slowed the walleye and northern pike action considerably.


Diamond Point Bar and the west side of Lake Bemidji are giving up walleyes on live bait in 18 to 24 feet of water. Bluegills and crappies have started hitting on Clearwater Lake in 12 to 15 feet, and the weed lines of Midge Lake are kicking out bass and bluegills. Muskie action has been best on the weed lines during low-light periods with bucktails on Bemidji, Big Lake and Lake Plantagenet.


Walleye action remains hot on Cass Lake and Pike Bay with crankbaits, spinners or jigs in 6 to 8 feet of water. Better spots have been the bars such as North Cedar, Tom’s, East Stony, the Kettle and West Cedar during low-light periods. Look for perch in 6 to 8 feet on Tom’s Bar, East Cedar Bar, North Cedar Bar and the Kettle. Bass are hitting plastics on Lake Thirteen, and anglers should look for panfish along the pencil reeds on Kitchi Lake.


The crankbait bite at night has been hit or miss, with the stretch from Sand Point to Cedar Point being most productive in 9 to 14 feet of water. Work the main-lake humps during the day with crawlers in 25 to 35 feet for walleyes. A few more walleyes are starting to come from the mid-depth weeds with jigs and minnows. Muskie action has been best in the cabbage of Portage Bay and the rocks around Pelican and Submarine islands.


Perch are hitting minnows on the 12- to 14-foot rocks in the Fence area and northwest corner of the lake. Walleye action has picked up with slip bobbers and leeches or crawlers and spinners in the 8- to 12-foot weeds on Tamarack Point, Big Stony Point and Raven’s Point. Horseshoe Bar also gave up more fish this week in 12 feet.


Walleyes are scattered from 7 to 25 feet of water and hitting jigs tipped with minnows on Big Detroit, Melissa and Pelican lakes. Sunfish are hitting along the 12- to 15-foot weed lines of lakes Melissa, Sallie, Severson, Floyd and Big Detroit. Look for bigger bass on the deep weed lines of most lakes, while CowGirls and topwater baits are raising muskies on Big Detroit and Beers lakes.


Minnows worked on the 14- to 17-foot weed lines of Long Lake are producing a few walleyes. Bluegills are hitting waxworms on the weed lines of Fish Hook Lake, Toad Lake and the Crow Wing Chain. Rainbow trout are suspended over deep water and hitting crawlers on Long and Bad Medicine lakes, while Fish Hook, Island and Potato Lake have been best for bass. Muskie anglers on Big Mantrap Lake are reporting decent action with bucktails.