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St Croix River

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I caught my first muskie on saturday out of the st. croix near hinckley! It was kind of an accident, I was fishing for bass with a medium spinning rod and 8 lb test (which made landing a 30" 'ski all the more exciting)...but I really want to catch another muskie.

However, I have a few questions:

1. Anybody out there fish the st croix for muskie, and was catching one smaller muskie while bass fishing seem like a rarity, or are there plenty of others out there waiting to be caught?

2. All's I have are a couple MH 7' baitcasting setups with 17# mono that I use for bass fishing. Would I be foolish to try and hook a bigger muskie with that kind of rig?

Any feedback is great! All I can think about now is trying to catch another muskie!!

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Although I've caught a few mid 40" fish on 6'6" M baitcasters with 30 lb braid, I wouldn't recommend it.

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oh really? I kind of thought so...I would feel a little irresponsible if I used too light of line, and had it break and left a lure in a nice fish's mouth. thanks

If I bought a heavy rod, what size line would you recommend?

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MH rods can work fine, respool one with a 65lb braid, it will have the equivalent diameter to 12-15lb mono. Get some heavier leaders and up there on the 'croix, i'd get some topwater lures. Or just keep fishing your bass stuff, elephants do eat and love peanuts!

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Hiya -

First and foremost - congrats on the first muskie! Very cool. You made your first one pretty exciting too catching it on light bass gear.

I catch many muskies every year on heavy bass gear. I use a flipping stick to throw a lot of small to mid-sized muskie baits like small bucktails, minnow baits and topwaters. Most of the time it's with heavier braid, but I used 20# mono a lot in the past. Frankly, if you know how to fight a fish half way competently, the muskie hasn't been born you can't whip on 20# mono and a flipping stick.

Depending on the rod, the 7' MH may be fine if it has enough power. 17# mono is probably ok too for occasional muskie fishing - just be sure to have a wire leader. If you're going to do it a little more often, a flipping stick and 50# braid is a pretty versatile rod to have around - lots of other uses besides muskies, from flipping to Carolina rigs to catfish to whatever. Might be worth the investment...

Good luck with the muskies. smile


Rob Kimm

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Mike, I just moved to Stillwater and I'm fishing the Croix for the first time early Saturday morning for a couple hours and you're welcome to jump in and see how we roll equipment-wise. I've got some extra outfits you can try and see what you like.

You already caught your first musky, you can't uncatch it, it's too late - welcome to a life of futility and anguish wink

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