Minnesota fishing lakes

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Grand Rapids Lakes Area Fishing

Sugar Lake near Remer is giving up crappies in 20 feet. Big Splithand, Little Splithand, Big Cutfoot, and Little Cutfoot are providing steady crappie action in 18 to 20 feet. Spearing and angling for northern pike remain strong on Lake Pokegama and Rice Lake. Walleyes are hitting in 17 to 24 feet on lakes such as Trout, Wabana, and Sugar. Look for sunfish in 14 to 17 feet on Bass Lake and in 22 feet at Grave Lake.

Lake Kabetogama Fishing

Northern pike are being taken in good numbers by anglers and spearers from shallow water. A few walleyes are being caught, but it’s tough to get to the prime winter spots due to slush.

Leech Lake Fishing

The walleye action at Walker Bay on Leech Lake remains excellent. Several anglers report catching walleyes numbers in the double digits. The best walleye bite has been in 15-20 foot depths. Anglers are also having fun with the perch, with most being pulled from depths of 13-17 feet.

Mankato Area Fishing

Northern pike are hitting sucker minnows in less than eight feet on Lake Francis. Lake Washington is a safe bet for panfish in 14 to 16 feet. Look to Lura Lake in six feet and the southeast end of Lake Hanska in eight feet for walleyes. Jigging Rapalas seem to be working best on both lakes.

Ortonville Area Lakes Fishing

There’s an evening crappie bite on Long Tom Lake in 10 feet. On Big Stone Lake, walleyes and perch can be had in 12 to 14 feet from LaGunna Beach to the Meadowbrook area. Work the south end of Lake Lac qui Parle for crappies during low-light periods. On the South Dakota side, the north end of Lake Waubay started kicking out perch.

Lake Osakis Fishing

The north end is giving up crappies during the evening hours in 28 feet. Shiner minnows remain the best option for walleyes in 18 feet on the Two Mile, Four Mile, and Banana bars. Sunfish reports have slowed, but the north end is worth checking in 20 to 24 feet. Spearing for northern pike has been excellent in Town Bay and on the Two Mile in eight feet.

Park Rapids Area Lakes Fishing

Glow jigs and minnows are triggering crappies on Big Mantrap Lake and the Crow Wing Chain in 20 to 25 feet. Setlines and shiner minnows are the ticket for walleyes on Fish Hook Lake and Portage Lake in 25 to 30 feet. The access area of Fish Hook also is producing bluegills in 13 to 15 feet. Tip-ups and sucker or shiner minnows are producing pike on Long Lake and the Crow Wing Chain in 10 to 14 feet.

Rainy Lake Fishing

Roads are plowed to Birch Point in Sand Bay, making it the most likely option to fish due to slush in most other areas. The key is to get away from the crowds and work 28 to 34 feet for walleyes. Spearing and angling with ciscoes has been productive for northern pike in the Rainy Lake City area.

St. Cloud Area Lakes Fishing

Walleyes are hitting on Lake Koronis in 12 to 32 feet, on Grand Lake in 16 feet, and on Rice Lake in 16 to 20 feet. Rice also has produced crappies in 20 feet. Look to Long Lake, Cedar Island Lake, Horseshoe Lake, and Becker Lake for sunfish and crappies in 10 to 20 feet. Goodner Lake and Pearl Lake are producing sunfish in 12 to 14 feet. Work the deep holes of the Horseshoe Chain for catfish.

Starbuck Area Lakes Fishing

The Glenwood end of Lake Minnewaska is producing sunfish in 12 feet. Work from the Fish Hatchery to Woodlawn Resort for better numbers of keeping-sized fish. Northern pike are being taken on tip-ups and minnows throughout the Glenwood end, and a few walleyes can be had if you stay overnight and work 18 to 20 feet with setlines and shiner minnows.

Twin Cities Area Lakes Fishing

There’s some evening walleye action on White Bear Lake in 15 to 18 feet. Crappies remain active on Bald Eagle Lake in 20 to 25 feet and on the St. Croix River in 35 to 40 feet. The north end of Bald Eagle and Lake Phalen are safe bets for northern pike in eight to 12 feet. Lakes such as Peltier and Centerville are the area’s best sunfish options. Tip-ups and sucker minnows are triggering northern pike in 12 to 14 feet at Pierson Lake and Mitchell Lake. Lotus Lake started giving up crappies, as did Hydes Lake and Lake Parley in less than 14 feet. Walleye action remains poor, but Lake Minnewashta is always a safe bet for sunfish in 10 to 12 feet.

Upper Red Lake Fishing

Walleyes on Upper Red Lake tend to follow the food more than the structure because the lake is both shallow and featureless. Anglers can find walleyes anywhere from the shoreline breaks in 5-9 feet of water all the way out to the deepest portion of the basin, which averages roughly 14 feet. Most of the crappies can be found in the basin further from shore during the winter months, but they should begin to migrate closer to shore in the near future.

Lake Vermilion Fishing

Walleyes, perch, and northern pike are being taken around the north tip of Taylors Island and the entrance to the Partridge River. Some good-sized northern pike have been cruising the shallows allowing for some good spearing opportunities. Slush continues to make travel difficult, but the east end of the lake does offer more established routes.


Walleyes continue to hit shiner minnows after dark on Anderson’s Reef in 12 to 14 feet and on North Center Reef and Keggs Reef in 13 to 15 feet. On Pillsbury Reef, look for crappies in 12 to 14 feet or suspended over 18 to 25 feet. Orange jigs and wax worms are turning sunfish in 10 to 12 feet in Waconia Bay and on Center Reef. Look for northern pike on the weedlines of Center Bar and Waconia Bay.

Waterville Area Fishing

The beach area of Lake Tetonka is giving up crappies in 10 to 15 feet and some pike in shallower water. A few big walleyes have been pulled from Clear Lake in 20 feet, while lakes such as French, Roberds, and Mazaska are giving up panfish in relatively shallow water.

White Bear Lake Fishing

Fishing has been very good with crappies, sunnies, northern pike and a few walleyes being pulled from White Bear Lake. Crappie anglers took the most fish on glow jigs tipped with a minnow. The majority of sunfish were pulled through the ice on waxworms. Walleye anglers did well using fathead minnows. Northern pike have reacted best to sucker minnows worked in 8-12 feet of water.

Willmar Area Fishing

Anglers are catching panfish, crappies, and walleyes on many area lakes. The bait of choice for panfish and crappies are currently crappie minnows and waxworms. For walleyes, local anglers report having the most success using rainbows and fatheads. For the most fish, hit Florida, Nest, Eagle, Diamond, Willmar and Foot lakes.

Lake Winnie Fishing

Walleye action has slowed to a few fish during low-light periods in 18 to 25 feet. Northern pike are hitting in most areas over 18 to 30 feet, and the best perch action is taking place in 25 to 32 feet. The biggest problem has been getting around on the lake. Slush and cracks are limiting the number of areas anglers can access.