This year, invest your tax return into travel!Continue reading
It is the perfect time to book your Spring Road Trip Girlfriend Getaways to Grand Rapids, MN. The springtime of the year allows you to get outside more to enjoy warmer weather, fresh buds on the trees and flowers starting to appear, and northern wildlife starts emerging from a long winter’s sleep. So, get your girlfriends together and have them check out the reasons why you should consider Grand Rapids, Minnesota as your next Spring Road Trip Girlfriend Getaway destination.
Grand Rapids is a perfect up north destination that provides a wide variety of places to stay. The Grand Rapids Area Resorts offer cabins and Lake Home Rentals to rent for a couple of days or more. This gives you multiple bedrooms with twin to king size beds, pull out sofa’s, and futons to expand sleeping options. Cabins can sleep 2-12 people. Many resorts have newer up-to-date cabins that offer full kitchens with dishwashers, wifi, and cable or satelite TV. Many of these properties are located on the lake or have lake views. You can also select from a variety of Grand Rapids Hotels/Motels that are conveniently located in town and close to restaurants, spa services, theater, night life, and walking/biking trails. Our quaint and charming Bed & Breakfast or Air B&B’s downtown which are also close to town to trails, shops, area lakes and places to eat & drink. Book at one of our 32 Grand Rapids Cozy Lodging Properties.
at our local Spa Service Providers in town. True North Salon is located within Historic Central School Marketplace in the center of downtown. They offer facials, manicures and pedicures, hair services (cuts, blowouts, styling, etc), and make-up services. They are an exclusive Aveda salon. Sukha is a location that houses four businesses under one roof. There is Salon Brad which offers full-service hair and waxing services. Bala Skin and Laser offers laser hair reduction & skin resurfacing, dermablading, Botox, fillers, chemical peels, micropen, massage, body scrubs, manis, pedis, facials and skincare. Center Fitness is a Mind and body fitness studio dedicated to providing intelligent instruction so that you get more out of every workout.
Eat & Drink Local
Start your day out right at one of the local coffee shops like: NoPo Coffee Company is an adorable cafe that has great coffee, tea, and also offers a full drink and food menu. Brewed Awakenings is located in historic downtown that offers Minnesota based coffee, teas, homemade bakery items, breakfast sandwiches and fast and healthy luncheons to go. Bixby’s is located in the Itasca YMCA which is perfectly located if you want to get a one-day pass to join an exercise or water class. For dinner enjoy our two craft breweries where you can dine-in at Rapids Brewing, order take-in or order from a Food Truck at Klockow Brewing Co, or order in or to go at Unwined Up North Wine Bar. Or select from several other wonderful places to dine like: Sammy’s Pizza, Forest Lake Restaurant, Pickled Loon, Zorbaz, Florio’s, Boulder Tap House, El Potro, or Cedar Creek Grille. Or maybe, you are looking to cook with your Girlfriends. With two locations for SuperOne Grocery Stores you can shop local from fresh produce, bakery, deli and meat to cook at your own cabin or vacation home rental.
A great way for you and your girlfriends to spend time together is creating something to take home as a memory of your time together. In Grand Rapids we have a rich artistic culture to create art in a natural setting. MacRostie Art Center offers a wide variety of art classes for beginners to advanced students. They can also connect you with an artists that would be interested in coming to you to teach a class. Classes range from painting, pottery, jewelry making, paper making, etc.
Seek Outdoor Adventure
Take advantage of the natural setting of Grand Rapids, by getting out into nature and experiencing something unique like Paddling the Mississippi or Hiking the Lost Forty, or bicycling the Mesabi Trail or Mississippi River Trail. Paddle Hoppers offers guided paddles of the Mississippi River and rents paddle equipment for you to take to the resort you are staying at. Ardent Bicycles offers mountain bike rentals. Grand Rapids also has a Bike Share Program. You can check out a bike at the Grand Rapids City Hall, Library or Itasca YMCA. All you need is a photo id.
If after-hours entertainment is something your group desires, check out our Things To Do page. Grand Rapids, Minnesota offers wonderful weekly live music at our craft breweries: Klockow Brewing Co and Rapids Brewing Co. The Reif Center has weekly performances September through May of each year that include Broadway style productions, live music concerts, and comedy shows. Check out the Events Calendar to view the daily and weekly line-up of nighlight in Grand Rapids.
Boutique Style Shops
Grand Rapids is filled with little boutique style shops that offer one-of-a-kind unique items that you cannot find anywhere else. You will find clothing & shoes, up-north finds, Minnesota made, antiques, vintage, or home decor. Here are some of our favorites: Bender’s Shoes & Gifts, Wings & Willow, Lake Lover Vintage, Central Square Mall, Itasca County Historical Society Gift Shop, Forest History Center Gift Shop, Judy Garland & Children’s Museum Gift Shop, Thousand Lakes Sporting Goods, Lake + Co Shop, Annabella’s Antique Mall, Shaw Florists, MacRostie Art Center Gallery ,Thirteen Main, Frame Up 218, Red Willow Co, and Clara Cupboard & Closet.
We hope that we have given you inspiration for you to want to book your Spring Road Trip Girlfriend Getaway to Grand Rapids, Minnesota! Download the 2022 Grand Rapids Visitor Guide for even more Girlfriend Getaway inspiration.
The warm weather is a very welcome change and bringing the snow depth down to manageable heights will make late winter-season ice fishing a bit easier to get around. With several opportunities available for Crappies, Bluegills, Tullibees, and Perch, late ice fishing won’t last long with warmer weather upon us. Make sure when venturing out you bring along or wear higher boots because of increased water on the ice.
Perch fishing, especially in the late winter, can be some of the best ice fishing opportunities of the winter. Perch start to move shallow prior to spawning and are schooled up in big bunches. They are nourishing their bodies and eating several different critters that are available. As the melting water seeps into the cracks and holes of the late ice, perch will go on a feeding binge right up into ice out. Looking at your lake maps try to target areas that come out of deeper water to flats that are adjacent to shallower rocky areas. These are key locations to contacting late ice perch with consistency. Make no mistake you will still have to drill several holes to stay on them, but it’s worth the effort.
Yellow Perch are one of the best-eating fish available and that is why many anglers have learned their food value. The firm, sweet flesh of perch are like no other species. For generations in Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, and Illinois, perch have been part of the “Friday night fish Fries” that many have grown up with. The reason is they are very tasty and fun to catch. We in Minnesota for many years never knew the value of perch until the last 20 years or so. Now there are many anglers targeting perch like never before. Limits were reduced to preserve the perch and now it has rebounded in several lakes where it was decades ago.
Small baits, like Northland Tackle’s Forage Minnow and the Forage Minnow Spoon, are deadly on late winter ice perch. Attach a minnow head or a couple of wax worms and subtly jig it until you get bit. Plastics also work excellent at times and the Impulse Bloodworm can be a bait that will put perch on the ice. Good electronics and an Aqua Vu underwater camera can be all-important ingredients in finding and staying on the perch. Much of the same tackle you use for other species of panfish are well suited for perch fishing also. Lite line in 4# test and a lite action rod is sufficient for perch and loads of fun.
Some of the good lakes in the Grand Rapids area are Big Winnie, Pokegama, Bowstring, Sand, Big Ball Club, and Jessie. Contact local bait shops for updated information on where the perch are biting. It can help in making your decision on where to fish.
To book a last-minute late winter ice fishing trip or book an opening fishing vacation, click HERE.
The perfect spring road trip to seek spring adventure up north in Grand Rapids, MN.
Let’s be honest, winter has been great this year, but we all have a little cabin fever. That feeling of being cooped up inside is leaving all of us seeking Spring Adventures in Minnesota. Grand Rapids, Minnesota is the perfect up north spring road trip where you can get outside, seek adventure, and also enjoy a little rest and relaxation as well. Below is a list of Top 10 Spring Adventure you can find in Grand Rapids, Minnesota…
Everyone gets a little, or a lot, of cabin fever around the transition from winter to spring. Grand Rapids, Minnesota offers over 1 million acres of public forest land made up of the Chippewa National Forest, UPM Blandin Foundation, George Washington State Forest, and the Scenic State Park. These are all great places to hike on well-maintained trails. We suggest the following: Simpson Creek (Easiest) is located in the Chippewa National Forest 45 miles northwest of Grand Rapids, Minnesota on the Avenue of the Pines Scenic Byway. This trail is a nice entry-level that is perfect for families of young children. Enjoy rolling topography through pines and along glacial eskers, with overlooks onto Cut Foot Sioux Lake and journeys into the cedar swamp. Legion Trail (Easy/Beginner to More Difficult Level) located north of town inside the City limits of Grand Rapids is a 7-mile hand-cut trail that is fun, flowy, and twisty in a mixed forest that wraps around Hale Lake. Suomi Hills (More Difficult Level) is a remotely located hiking and skiing trail located twenty-three miles north of Grand Rapids up the Edge of the Wilderness Scenic Byway. An interesting site is The Day Lake Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camp remains, a prisoner of war camp during World War II is located on the north end of Suomi Hills. Learn more about places to Hike in the Grand Rapids, MN area.
2. Explore Minnesota’s History
Grand Rapids, Minnesota was established in 1872 and has rich forestry, logging, and mining history to learn about. You will want to check out the Itasca County Historical Society Museum. The Museum is FREE, houses a lot of interesting Minnesota artifacts, and houses a genealogy center, gift shop, and escape room. The Judy Garland Museum and Children’s Discovery Museum are two museums under one roof where you can learn about the life of Judy Garland, born as Frances Ethel Gumm on June 10, 1922, in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. Find the largest Judy Garland and Wizard of Oz artifacts in the nation. Walkthrough the home Judy grew up in. The Children’s Discovery Museum offers hands-on educational exhibits, activities & programs for kids, plus a gift store. Learn more about Grand Rapids, MN area Historic Attractions.
3. Four Wheel Forest Adventures
Grand Rapids, Minnesota has over 300 miles of ATV trails to ride in the Spring. ATV/OHV trails open April -middle of May. The ATV trails that are located on old railroad beds open first (Alborn-Pengilly (39 miles), Blue Ox (74 miles), and Thistledew (25 miles). With Alvwood/Squaw Lake (159) and Island Lake Connection Trail (2 miles) opening May 2nd. The rest of the Itasca County ATV/OHV trails open middle of May (UPM-Blandin (21 miles), Balsam to Bigfork (33 miles), Little Moose (18 miles), and Northwoods Regional Trail (19 miles). All of these trails are well maintained and offer a wide variety of easy to moderate riding levels. All of these trails will take you through mixed forest, tamarack bogs, across boardwalks, and around lakes, rivers and streams. This is a wonderful way to get deeper into Minnesota’s forest on designated trails. Download the Itasca County ATV Map.
4. Explore Grand Rapids Public Art & History Tour
Take a walking tour around Grand Rapids and visit different murals, sculptures, and historic buildings. The art and history around Grand Rapids represent what Grand Rapids was founded on and you can find different art pieces that represent the Ojibwa culture, forestry, logging, and mining history, and the splendor of surrounding Minnesota’s nature. Also on the tour is MacRostie Art Center and The Reif Center which have rotating art exhibits and galleries. The new walking bridge across the Mississippi River is a wonderful place to start this self-guided tour. Download the Grand Rapids Public Art & History Tour.
5. Indoor Water Fun
Many Grand Rapids lodging properties like Timberlake Lodge Hotel, AmericInn, Country Inn & Suites offer pools and hot tubs. This allows kids of all ages to enjoy pool time while the parents relax in the hot tub. Timberlake Lodge Hotel has a Grand Splash waterpark, which offers a 98-foot slide, 20-person hot tub, and kiddie pool. A wonderful way for the kids and adults alike to burn off some energy and the parents to relax in comfort. Find Grand Rapids, MN places to Stay with pools and hot tubs.
6. Bike Mississippi to Boundry Waters
The Mesabi Trail is 145 miles of mostly paved bicycle trail that runs from the Mississippi River in Grand Rapids to the Boundry Waters in Ely. Cutting through the forests of northeast Minnesota, your adventure will take you past lakes, creeks, and ponds, by vast red pits of old iron ore mines now filled with emerald, green water. Learn more about the Mesabi Trail and purchase a wheel pass. The Tioga Recreation Area is a 25-mile single-track trail that was created for mountain biking and fat-tire biking. Playground Pathfinder will also be officially opening sometime in the Spring of 2022. Learn more about the Tioga Recreation Area.
7. Be Entertained
Mother Nature sometimes brings showers so our spring flowers can bloom. If this is the case, don’t fret, we have several indoor locations that can keep everyone entertained. The Reif Center is our hidden gem of a theater that brings the stars to northern Minnesota. Another place to relax and be entertained indoors is Mann’s Cinema Theater. Take in an afternoon matinee or evening show. They offer comfortable theater-style seating and a full-service concession stand. Thunder Alley XL offers a bowling and indoor adult-style arcade game area, an onsite bar that serves great pizza and other concession snacks. Find Grand Rapids, MN Area Attractions.
8. Eat, Drink & Shop Local
Check out the two craft breweries and Minnesota wine bar. At Klockow Brewing Company you can order or bring your own food in and enjoy live music every week. Rapids Brewing Company located in historic downtown offers wood-fired oven cuisine and live music and events occurring weekly. Unwined Up North is also located in historic downtown and serves Minnesota wine and craft beer, charcuterie boards, flatbreads, salads, and sandwiches. In Grand Rapids, you will find many locally-owned restaurants, bars, and grills that offer one-of-a-kind up north cuisine like hearty wild rice soup and juicy bar burgers. Find Places to Eat & Drink in Grand Rapids, MN. Downtown Grand Rapids is best known for boutique-style shops that offer one-of-a-kind gifts, home decor, clothing, shoes, jewelry, local art, and Northwood memorabilia to take home with you as a memento of your visit to Grand Rapids. Grand Rapids, Minnesota area has several other retail shops and vintage boutique-style shops where you can shop to your heart’s delight.
9. Grand Lakes of Golf
Three 18-hole championship golf courses make up the Grand Lakes of Golf: Eagle Ridge Golf Course, Pokegama Golf Course, and Sugar Brooke Golf Course. Each course is beautifully manicured with different degrees of difficulty. All have cart rentals and restaurants on-site. Whether you want 18 or 9 holes, to take an extended vacation, long weekend, or just get in a few holes after work, Grand Rapids has many options, and won’t disappoint. There are four additional 9-hole courses located in the Grand Rapids, MN area as well that are perfect for entry-level golfers and families. Find more information and book a tee time for Grand Rapids, MN area Golf Courses.
10. Seek Rest and Relaxation
Grand Rapids, Minnesota offers a wide variety of cozy lodging options where you can find rest and relaxation while up north. You will find conveniently located in town Hotels/Motels and Bed & Breakfast. You will also find Minnesota Resort cabins and Vacation Home Rentals where you will have the opportunity to make your own meals and gather together. And we also offer in-town Air B&B’s as well that are hosted in a mixed commercial and residential area that is close to being able to walk to shops, restaurants, and breweries downtown. Find Places to Stay in Grand Rapids, MN.
As winter continues to move forward, Ice fishing has sort of taken a back seat to other winter activities in the Grand Rapids area. With snow levels at ever-increasing levels, snowmobiling and cross country skiing have been extremely popular. It continues to be an “Old-time Minnesota Winter” that we haven’t seen in several years. A gentleman once told me the higher the Muskrats build their winter houses the more snow we are going to have. Well, he was correct. Even the weather folks predicted this winter wrong, but the Muskrats knew.
End of Season for a Few Species- Northern Pike & Walleye
Winter fishing is still a popular time to be out enjoying the outdoors. Right now locations are very important in contacting fish of several species. As we are into the later period of ice fishing, the cold water has definitely slowed the metabolism of fish but that will increase their feeding activity as we continue to move forward. Species such as walleyes and northern pike have only a few more weeks to show in your bucket. February 28th will end the season for both species, but there are still others to fish for.
Ice Fishing Tips!
Northern pike is moist often a fish that is less affected by cold water and they can continue to be active. By using Lakemaster mapping you can target areas where weeds and hard bottom near drop-offs exist. Tip-ups are still a good way to target these late-season pikes and allowing two tip-ups per angler can up your odds if you bring a friend or family member along. Smaller sucker minnows will most often produce the most flags. If I’m going to jig them or fish live to bait with a rod and reel I most often will use a slower moving bait then in early winter, drill several holes in an area from 8 to 20 feet and change holes often until you get bit. Many times attach a small sucker or medium shiner to your jig if that’s your presentation and it will definitely help. If there are weeds anywhere in the holes you drilled, concentrate your efforts in and around those locations.
Great Lakes to Fish for Northern Pike
Several of the good northern pike lakes in the Grand Rapids area that you may want to try are Swan, Trout Lake in Coleraine, Wabana, Big Winnie, and Pokegama. The last 2 weeks of the ice fishing season are coming up for northern pike and walleyes. Get out and give it a try on the mentioned lakes and it may be a good choice for the last of the season ice fishing trip.
To locate lakes, click HERE
There are great lodging properties in Itasca County on or close to the lakes mentioned above. To book/check out the lodging properties, click HERE. If you can’t make it up this winter to ice fish for northern pike or walleyes, don’t worry Summer and Fall are great times to book a fishing vacation too.
Valentine’s Day is just around the corner plan your romantic getaway in Grand Rapids, MN. There is no better gift than a special weekend out of town. If you haven’t planned what to do for your special person, here are 5 ideas to make this valentine’s day extra special.
1. Hotel, Wine Bar, & Snowshoeing!
In Grand Rapids, there are 5 outstanding hotels. Some of the great amenities that are offered at some of the properties include a pool, hot tub, dog-friendly, attached dining/bar and all are conveniently located close to town. During your stay, visit UnWined Up North. They were voted the #1 wine bar in Minnesota by Star Tribune. Locally owned and known for a wide array of wine and beer all made in Minnesota. During your stay, spend some time outdoors exploring the snowshoeing trails. Rentals are available at Ardent Bicycles. Guided snowshoeing is available every Thursday from 12:30-1:30 at Tioga Recreation with Stephanie from the City of Cohasset Park and Rec. Department. Snowshoes are available during this guided service for FREE! Check out other trails in the greater Grand Rapids area by clicking HERE.
2. Experience the Arts During a Weekend Up North!
Part of a great romantic getaway is to take in a performance together. See the Itasca Strings Orchestra on February 12th at 7 pm at The Reif. The Itasca Symphony Orchestra Plays Bizet Featuring violist Evgeny Zvonnikov they will be playing Carmen Fantasy. Before the show, there are great dining options in the Grand Rapids area to treat your special someone. Don’t forget to stop at MacRostie Art Center to see their Face Value exhibit by Russ White. There is also a cool store on the corner called Stained Glass with Class that offered stained glass classes. Call today to book a time!
3. Relax & Re-connect at a Resort or Bed & Breakfast
Enjoy the coziness of a cabin in the winter or the ease of a Bed & Breakfast. Re-connect with your loved one for a romantic getaway while exploring Minnesota’s nature. Set up an ice shanty on one of 1,000+ lakes in the area for some amazing ice fishing. Check out the latest Ice Fishing Report. Another idea is to head over to Blackwater Cross County Ski trail for a night ski on their lit trails. Lights are on until 10 pm and they have a heated shack! For more cross-country ski trails, click HERE.
4. Weekend Ideas for the Adventurous Couples
If you and your significant other love snowmobiling or fat tire biking, the Grand Rapids area is the perfect place to make a valentines day weekend trip. There are over 1,000+ miles of groomed trails to explore. Check out the trails in advance by clicking HERE. If you are visiting to fat tire bike, Tioga is the place to go. There are over 25 miles of groomed trails from beginner to advanced. Click HERE to see the trail report.
5. Beer Flights & Museums
Come experience a fun weekend at the local breweries! Sip a flight of craft beer while listening to live music and enjoy some great food. Rapids Brewing Company has a special menu for Valentine’s Day and Klockow Brewing Company allows you to bring in your own food! Near the breweries are 2 unique museums. Check out The Itasca County Historical Society which has a ton of unique exhibits and has an escape room. Call to book an hour! If you and your significant other are looking for a guided tour, the Judy Garland Museum has a guide every Friday and Saturday. Take a walk around and learn about the life of Judy Garland. The museum included the home she grew up in.
Information on Booking a Trip
To see the different lodging properties in the greater Grand Rapids area visit our Stay Page. If you have any questions about booking a romantic getaway, feel free to call the Visit Grand Rapids office at (218) 326-9607 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Make 2022 you’re year to do things that make you happy. One of the best ways to check things off your bucket list is to get started on it right away. Below is a list of 5 New Year’s resolution ideas that can be achieved in Grand Rapids.
1. Relax for Some Self-Care Time
Enjoy a day at the spa getting a massage, facial. manicure, pedicure, and other treatments. Self-care can also be spending time doing something you love.
2. Change of Scenery/ Travel
Get out of the busy city and work remotely from a Bed & Breakfast, a cozy hotel or try the resort life on the lake. Traveling to a new place can spark new ideas. Come see what a charming rural Minnesota town looks like and leave re-energized after relaxing up north.
3. Learn a New Skill or Hobby
The Grand Rapids area is home to a wide variety of outdoor recreation and art experiences. Try a class at Stained Glass with Class or MacRostie Art Center. If you’re looking to try something outdoors, head over to Mt. Itasca to try tubing, skiing, or snowboarding. Other hobbies to try include: snowshoeing, cross country skiing, and fat-tire biking. All of these rentals can be found at Ardent Bicycles.
4. See Live Music
The Reif offers spectacular shows and music acts. Visit their website to see upcoming shows. Other local musicians play at Klockow Brewing Company, Rapids Brewing Company, and UnWined Up North.
5. Take Time to Learn Some History
In Grand Rapids, there are 3 must-see museums. The Itasca County Historical Society, Judy Garland Museum, and the Children’s Museum. All of the museums offer interactive exhibits and the Itasca County, Historical Society offers the opportunity to book an hour to try out their escape room.
Come explore the greater Grand Rapids area and start fresh in 2022 by trying one of the above New Year’s Resolutions. Wishing you a happy and healthy 2022. For help with booking a trip, please call our office at (218) 326-9607, or to request a visitor guide, click HERE.
Happy New Year to all Minnesotans and come visit us in Grand Rapids all year long. The start of the 2022 year has brought us lots of snow and very cold temperatures. It is winter that Grand Rapids and all the things one can do when visiting.
Ice fishing is in full swing and with the colder weather, conditions continue to improve. Ice thickness varies from lake to lake and safety should always be implemented when out on the ice. It never hurts to call ahead and find out conditions. Any of the bait shops in the Grand Rapids area can provide you with up-to-the-minute conditions. So give them a call before venturing out on the ice.
Walleye fishing has been good on area lakes and the best times seem to be early and late in the day. Big Winnie has been providing additional options for good size perch and nice northern pike. Now with the additional snow, travel by snowmobile or on a plowed road is the best option currently. Most of the offshore structures are giving up walleyes and nice perch mixed, but moving can be the key to finding pods of fish that want to bite. A Northland Buckshot Spoon or Coffin Spoon tipped with a minnow head is a sure-fire way to attract either species to the hole. If you drill 2 holes close together put a Dead Stick presentation in the hole you’re not jigging in with a single hook spoon or plain hook and a split shot. The “Silent Partner” approach can be the ticket at times.
Other lakes in the Grand Rapids area that are also producing walleyes are Pokegama, Big Splithand, Big Jessie, Moose, and Trout in Coleraine. The panfish bite has been decent on area lakes and especially during the midday. Small creatures that excite bluegills and crappies get active as the day goes on. Drill several holes in an area and use your electronics to locate schools of active fish. The bite may only last a few minutes and by drilling several holes you can literally “Hole Hop” and find the school again. Small tungsten jigs, tipped with a wax worm or soft plastic, in the 1/16th to 1/32nd size are great choices to use on 4# test fluorocarbon. A St. Croix Rod to SCT 30LXF is perfect for detecting those lite biters. Many lakes in the Grand Rapids area offer outstanding panfish opportunities. Little and Big Splithand, Pokegama, Big Bass in Cohasset, Bowstring, and Big Balsam just to mention a few.
Ice fishing is not the only activity available in the winter with prime snowmobiling, cross country skiing trails, snowshoeing and even Fat Tire biking trails becoming more of an opportunity. Couple that with great restaurants, and motel and hotel accommodations, and Grand Rapids continues to be a destination for all seasons.
Winter is always a slow process and an exciting one. In the Grand Rapids area, there is so much to do. Winter brings enjoyment with ice fishing, cross country skiing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, and fat-tire biking. Come ice fish and explore the hundreds of miles of groomed and off-road trails. The beauty of the Grand Rapids area is that all seasons make this destination one to add to your list of places to visit.
There are so many lakes to try out your ice fishing skills. If walleyes are your passion, there are countless lakes to try to catch trophy-size fish. When the ice conditions improve, there are several lakes that can produce walleyes in the 8-9 pound class as well as eating size walleye. Big Cutfoot, Big Splithand, Deer, Pokegama, and Trout lake produce big walleye every season. Most often early in the day and the last 2 hours are some of the best times to do battle with big walleye. A lesser thought of approach is daytime weed beds that can hold the biggest of walleyes during the day, especially during low light conditions. Tip-up fishing with a lively shiner or small sucker minnow can be just the meal they are looking for. Drill several holes along the edge of the weeds and change your tip-up position every 20-30 minutes. There may be a few pesky northern pikes that may come calling, but this can be a great presentation for catching big walleyes.
A most sought-after species that gets little attention until March and early April are the Yellow Perch that are located on nearly all our area lakes. Many anglers across the ice belt come to several of our lakes in search of the fast action of Yellow Perch. Not a very finicky fish but, they can be caught in great numbers and are an awesome species for the table. Big Winnie has had a reputation for jumbo Perch for decades and anglers from Wisconsin and Michigan have made yearly trips to the big lake for consistent fishing. Winnie provides great habitat for producing good numbers of larger Perch and that is what draws the anglers. Other lakes in the area to try for big Perch are Bowstring, Jay Gould, Big Splithand, and Pokegama. Drill several holes in depths of 8-20 feet around rocks and weeds and hole hop until you find them. A small spoon tipped with a minor hear or a couple of wax worms will do the trick.
Merry Christmas to all and put Grand Rapids on your list of places to visit during the holiday season.
This week’s Grand Rapids Fall Fishing Report is brought to you by Tom Neustrom. Tom is a professional fishing guide that owns, MN Fishing Connections guide service. Header photo caption: Tony Perlochek from Marshfield, WI caught and released this 26-inch Walleye on Big Winnie with Tom Neustrom.
With the warm weather, fishing continues to be good to excellent for several species in the grand rapids area. The Panfish, Croppies, sunfish have been cooperating quite well for anglers and some of the lakes to try are Pokegama, big bass in Cohasset, big and little split hand, and loon lake. The boat accesses are still marginal at best, so use special care when dropping your boat in the lake.
Small tungsten jigs with a wax worm or small minnow have been doing the job. Walleye fishing continues to be good on area lakes and look for that to continue until Fall turnover occurs. Water temperatures on most of the lakes are in the low to mid 60’s which is far above normal for this time of year. The jib and minnow bites continue to be the best presentation to use and on most area lakes the walleyes continue to be shallow water. There are exceptions to the rule with lakes such as Sugar, Deer, and Trout Lake in Coleraine. Where depths of 20-25 ft would be a better location. Those lakes that are very clear are much better on cloudy days or the last 1-2 hours before sunset. A jig and a shiner and a chub are getting the job done for walleye anglers. Another presentation to look at it in deeper clear lakes is a jigging rap. When there are 2 angles in the boat together using the jigging wrap and the other using jig and minnow, this is the best way to find out the bites. These 2 fisted approaches can really make a difference, especially on deep clear lakes with structure.
Northern Pike fishing has been good and many times you will catch an occasional Northern while using jig fishing for Walleyes. They seem to occupy the same water column as the Walleyes do and for some reason on bright sunny days, they are even more active. Northern Pike fillets are very tasty once you learn how to take the y bone out. The meat is firm and white and has a taste all its own. Sometimes trolling shad wraps spoons and spinnerbaits are great ways to attract Northers this time of year. We in the Grand Rapids area are enjoying one of the most colorful Falls we have seen in years. Come join us in the outdoor wonderland of the north.