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Going to try ice fishing for lake and rainbow trout off the gunflint trail in two weeks, can I get some suggestions on what type of lures or bait to use? I was told you can use live minnows on the lake.

I've only been lake trout fishing once 17yrs ago in Canada, we used a silver little Cleo lure with no bait and caught plenty of fish. Don't know if there is something better for rainbows or not.

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If live minnows are allowed, then I'm assuming your going to trout lake? Pretty much anything you use for panfish will work for rainbows. I do prefer live minnows (where legal) with a bright orange or pink jig, just a few inches under the ice. 


As as far as lakers go, live bait isn't necessarily important. You can catch them on twister tails, tube jigs, or bucktails. Rattle traps, jigging raps, and spoons work great also. Silver, blue, white, or purple are good colors.

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Thanks for the info. Yes its Trout Lake. Just a few inches under the ice????? would have never thought that. When i did my lake trout trip we were in 40 fow and fished about 4' off the bottom with spoons.

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Yeah, rainbows like to stay close to the surface. Even in the fall when I troll for them I prefer lures that stay within a few feet of the surface. Keeping your bait high up helps keep the perch away also. 


Funny thing about trout lake, it supposedly has a fairly good laker population, but of all the years I've fished here I've never caught one. If you do decide on getting some bait, frozen smelt might be better than frozen ciscoe, as smelt are the forage there.


Nearby mink and kimball lakes are worth a try also. They were poisoned out a couple years ago and the trout fishing has never been better! Live minnows not allowed there.

monstermoose78 likes this

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