You can fish before the Minnesota Fishing Opener (walleye and northerns) for panfish in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. This week’s fishing report brought to you by Tom Neustrom, professional fishing guide and owner of MN Fishing Connections guide service.
The Grand Rapids area offers many early season panfish opportunities when the ice goes off the area lakes. Most often crappies are the target of many anglers, but there are opportunities for bluegills and perch as well. AS the shallows warm, and there are food sources that become available, finding panfish in water as shallow as 2-3 feet is common.
You need to operate in a rather stealth mode and quietly sneaking up on these fish is all important. A small slip bobber with a jig is one of the key factors that will spell success. Targeting soft bottom areas in the backend of bays and old stands of pencil reeds from last season can be target spots for early season crappies. Instead of anchoring I use my rear mounted Minnkota Talon to keep me in place and move freely with a touch of the control. This allows me to quickly change my positioning without worrying about lifting and lowering the anchor when moving. I prefer a light action rod that can be important when casting a small float and light jig to specific locations. Four pound test monofilament is the line of choice for your reel and very manageable even for the biggest crappie or bluegill around.
Good choices for early season panfish opportunities, are Pokegama, Rice, Loon, Little Moose, and little Cutfoot. All of these bodies of water contain the habitat and species we discussed. Grand Rapids is a wealth of angling opportunities so come and experienced what is available.