Tom Neustrom shares the first week of the new year ice fishing report for Grand Rapids, Minnesota.
Happy New Year to all. Its been an interesting start to the New Year with Old Man weather kicking up his heals. With over 14 inches of new snow its made it tough getting around. Snowmobile travel is about the only way to get around on many lakes. On Big Winnie, Bowstring and a couple others resorts are doing some plowing, Calling ahead for conditions and plowed road accesses would not be a bad idea. As the weather warms and the snow levels go down some, getting around will be easier.
The walleye bite has slowed a bit but there are still nice fish being caught on Pokegama, Trout, and Big Winnie. The evening bite seems to be the best bet. Dead sticks with a shiner or rainbow chub seem to be working more consistently. Remember also to place your split shot 8-10 inches from your hook as not to allow the minnow to swim too freely and negate its swimming. Many times, especially in mid to late winter, walleyes aren’t in a chasing mood. Keep it simple and the rewards of success can come your way.
Perch fishing has been decent on area lakes with deep rock and weed edges have been the best places to try. Small spoons and 2-3 wax worms or minnow heads both are good choices chasing perch. Big Winnie, Bowstring, Jay Gould and Pokegama are all good destinations for a nice bucket of perch and they are hard to beat for a great meal .Use a soft tip rod like Tuned Up Custom Rod’s Quick Tip to detect soft bits and still the strength to handle a bigger fish that strikes. Drill several holes and move often. Perch, like other species, are on the move looking for food and you have to stay mobile. One on a good perch bite you will experience a lot of fun and some great eating.
For those of you that fish some and snowmobile or cross country ski, the Grand Rapids area has everything to offer. It’s a winter wonderland once again and there are several options to enjoy.