This week’s fishing report brought to you by Tom Neustrom highlights ice fishing for walleyes in the Grand Rapids, MN area.
The weather has improved, and anglers are getting out on the ice and having opportunities to catch fish. It’s been an old time Minnesota winter and dealing with conditions is just part of fishing in the winter. The end of February marks the end of the fishing season for walleyes, northern pike, and other species you may catch. There are still many weeks left to angle for panfish, trout, and tullibees before open water comes.
Some of the best opportunities for late season ice fishing for walleyes in the Grand Rapids MN area is early and late in the day. Like many species, walleyes have been slightly lethargic after living in water temperatures in the 30’s for several months. Their movements and migrations have become limited and not as often. Most often daytime catching for walleyes can be limited to the last 2 hrs of light. Walleyes will travel same routes at times of the day in search of food. That’s why its advised to set up on corners of bars near deep water as to ambush them as they migrate to bars, humps and weeded areas somewhat shallower.
Smaller baits can many times be key to success and not moving these baits aggressively but more gradual. A 1/8th ounce Northland Buckshot Rattle Spoon or Buck Shot Flutter Spoon can be the ticket. Time and time again I have seen this presentation produce when all else failed. Attach a minnow head or several larvae to the treble for smell and action. You may also want to alternate a plain hook and minnow on a “Dead Stick” with little or no additional movement. Many times, to limit too much movement of the minnow is to trim the tail or shorten the space from the sinker to the hook. Both these tips can help you to get a bite when all else fails. I prefer lighter line later in the season and most often 4-6 pound test will work just fine and get you a few more bites.
Big Splithand, Moose, Big Cutfoot, Jessie, and Pokegama are some lakes that are good ice fishing for walleyes in the Grand Rapids, MN area. Get set up early before sundown and be as quiet as possible. It definitely will make a difference. For more information: Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Ice Fishing. Book your lodging HERE.