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Current Fishing Reports on Up North Outdoors.
MINNESOTA - LAND OF 10,000 Lakes - Get out on the Water!
Lake of the Woods Fishing Report - 4-24-17
Rainy Lake Fishing Report - Update Weekly
Lake Mille Lacs Fishing Report - 3-10-17
Kabetogama-Ash River Fishing Report - 4-24-17
Devils Lake, North Dakota Fishing Report from Woodland Resort

Minnesota Statewide Fishing Reports
INFO AS OF 4-21-17

Northeast Minnesota


The ice left Lake Kabetogama either Friday, April 14, or early Saturday, April 15. The ice out is a couple weeks earlier than normal and the water levels are slightly higher than normal for this time in April. Both conditions may improve fishing over the opener. If the weather remains stable and warm weather persists the walleye should be done spawning by the end of month, hopefully leaving them hungry for the May opener. If the water warms as much as the high 50s, the bait fish will be in spawning, attracting northern pike and walleye back into the shallows. 800-524-9085; www.kabetogama.com

Duluth - Lake Superior and inland waters

This week has been cold, windy and wet. While fishing has been more difficult, some nice fish have been taken. Lake Superior is giving up smelt during twilight hours. Anglers are flocking to the stream areas and having success dip-netting and running seine nets. Minnesota Point has offered a lot of action. The North Shore streams should be a good choice as well. Strong winds have made shore-landing kamloops a challenge. The most comfortable fishing has been in the tributaries. Most docks are out on the St. Louis River but there hasn't been a lot of traffic. It won't be long until the panfish action kicks into high gear. The best areas will be the shallow bays near the timber. Wood structure, such as are submerged beaver dams, will heat up water faster than other areas and this will be where the perch, crappies and sunnies will locate. The walleye are in the midst of their spawn and should be left alone. There have been reports recently of anglers pursuing spawning walleye. While this is not legal, it is also not ethical and can be harmful to the population. The inland lakes are now free of ice, and most public docks are either in or are in the process of being set up. Anglers will want to concentrate on the still shallow bays for the best panfish action. Use live bait with sinker and float. A boat is not necessary -- just a pair of rubber boots! 800-438-5884; www.visitduluth.com

Grand Rapids

Fishing in Itasca County is heating up, with lots of anglers chasing bluegills and crappies. The deeper weed beds and brush piles in 3-8 feet of water have been producing the most fish. The best approach has been to rig a crappie minnow, waxworm, or variety of panfish plastics, with great panfish action in the afternoons on most all area lakes. The suckers continue their run in the rivers and streams. The tributaries off the Mississippi River have been very good for sucker fishing. Look for slightly deeper pools in the bends where the current changes and where the stream dumps into the Mississippi for the most consistent action. Use enough weight to keep your rig on the bottom. Anglers having the most success are using a 3/4- to 1-ounce weight placed above a swivel with a short 12-inch leader and smaller #4 hook. Add a full nightcralwer and you’re ready to go! www.visitgrandrapids.com

Northwest Minnesota

Baudette - Lake of the Woods & the Rainy River

On Lake of the Woods, the spring walleye season has closed, and will re-open on the Minnesota Fishing Opener, May 13. Anglers have turned their attention to sturgeon, northern pike, and sucker fishing. There have been reports of many large catch-and-release sturgeon over the past week. Successful anglers are using a 3- to 4-ounce no-roll sinker, a 1- to 1.5-foot leader, and a circle hook loaded with frozen shiners and crawlers. Anchoring the boat upstream of a deeper hole and pitching the presentation into a hole is preferred. The “keep one” sturgeon season opens April 24. Northern pike are turning active in the bays where the water is the warmest. There have been no reports of sucker action, but the run should occur very soon. 800-382-FISH; www.lakeofthewoodsmn.com

Walker - Leech Lake

A few anglers are starting to trickle out in hopes of finding fast panfish action on Leech Lake. Last weekend, weather conditions made it tough to connect with the crappies and sunnies. The perch were cooperating, with active pre-spawn fish found in depths of 4-6 feet in a few areas. The surface water temperatures were already in the high 40s, and even hit 50 in a few places. These early warm water temperatures should make the May 13 opener a great one! 800-833-1118; www.leech-lake.com

Park Rapids

With the waters warming up nicely, in some cases into the low 50s, so is the fishing. Fish close to shore using a light float, small jig and minnow combo and toss the presentation beyond the fish then reel into 12-20 foot depths. Since the fish are shallow, you can sometimes view them through polarized fishing glasses. Avoid dropping the bobber directly onto the resting fish as this will spook them. Sometimes shore fishing is the best approach. Consider fishing areas with downed trees, brush, or beaver lodges in shallow mucky bays on the northern sides of the lake since the southern sun warms these waters first. 800-247-0054; www.parkrapids.com

Detroit Lakes

Some crappies are starting to move into the shallows of area lakes. The best time to fish is late in the afternoon when the water has had a chance to warm up -- sometimes an increase of just few degrees can cause the fish to starting biting at a fast and furious pace. Small jigs tipped with small minnows or waxworms under a small float usually works best. When the fish are really action, just a small hair jig tipped with a small plastic tail can be extremely effective. Remember, a boat isn’t necessary this time of year – just cast from shore! The crappie fishing will only get better as the water continues to slowly warm. 800-542-3992; www.visitdetroitlakes.com

Central Region


The spring panfish bite is shaping up nicely. Water temperatures are in the mid-50s in the shallow bays, so more fish are moving into the bays each day. There are dozens of lakes that are giving up fish from shore, with some running quite large. For anglers without a boat, look for the shallow, black-bottom bays on the north side of the lake -- sometimes using a “satellite view” can help you pinpoint these areas. It helps to choose your specific destination before leaving home. 800-235-9441; www.vacationalexandriamn.com


As of late last week, the cloudy conditions had slowed the panfish bite on Lake Minnewaska. A few sunnies, however, continued to be pulled from the Starbuck Marina. Crappie action was best on the Glenwood end of the lake. Expect fishing to heat up this weekend with the warmer, sunnier conditions. www.glenwoodlakesarea.org


The fish are beginning to move into the shallows. Most anglers are having success using wax worms, crawlers or minnows. The weekend should be warm and sunny – an ideal time to hit the open water. Consider Willmar and Foot lakes for some good crappie action. For crappie, bass and sunfish action, check out Nest Lake Bay and the northeastern corner of Eagle Lake. 800-845-8747; www.willmarlakesarea.com

Southern Minnesota

Winona - Mississippi River/Lake Pepin

Fishing at Lock & Dam 5A on the Mississippi River remains very good. Anglers also report good fishing action at the wing dams. Species most reported include walleye, crappies, and catfish. 507-452-0735; www.visitwinona.com

Lanesboro - Southeast Bluff Country trout streams

As of Thursday, April 20, area streams and rivers were slightly muddy to muddy, with a slightly high to high water flow due to rain the previous night. Lanesboro received just under 1 inch of rain, but parts of Winona County received roughly 2 inches of rain. There were reports of caddis earlier in the week on some streams. For information on fly fishing for trout, check out the trout fishing basics described in Stunning Streams Lure Trout Anglers. 800-944-2670; www.lanesboro.com

Anglers may obtain fishing licenses 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by dialing 1-888-665-4236, or accessing DNR License Sales.

The information in this report is provided courtesy of Explore Minnesota Tourism.

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