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Best Bait Shops

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As I said in my last post I am new to the forume and think it is great I am also however new to fishing and dont have much experiance at all but would love to gain all the information possible because I do believe I am hooked on fishin for life. Where do you guys get all your lures any favorite shops or just anywhere and everywhere. I like fishin for bass so if you have any fav lures or helpful hints I would sure like to hear them.. Thanks, and have a great day!!
Nicebass
Blaine, MN

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Vados Bait is the best. If your a bass fisherman, talk to the owner Greg or the manager Mike. Those two know their bass. If you want personal service and good information, that's the place to go. Capras has a good selection on bass baits but they are way high on price and they feed you alot of B.S. Good Luck

------------------
MILLE LACS AREA GUIDE SERVICE
651-271-5459 http://fishingminnesota.com/millelacsguide/

[This message has been edited by D-man (edited 03-07-2002).]

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I enjoy Swanson's in Hackensack, and I like to snoop in Reed's in Walker (trying not to talk to sales folks), Little Jim's in Annandale is a good stop, and anytime I'm near one of the Midwest stores for Cabela's or Bass Pro I'll stop in, often to eat in their cafeterias. Bass Pro in Gurnee, Illinois has the best bratwurst you'll find, and Cabela's elk and buffalo sandwiches are very good. And, Gander Mountain is good for a browse or two.

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I'm not sure if I have permission to do so, but I must add Pure Fishing's outlet store in Spirit Lake, Iowa. If your sales resistance is low, leave cash, check book, and credit cards in the car.

I cannot visit Spirit Lake without spending $$ at the fisherman's outlet store.

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I like to spread my business around and do my best to buy as much stuff at mom-and-pop baitshops as I can. A lot of the little places don't have big selctions, but if you go to a few different stores you can find a variety of different stuff. Also its always a good idea to shop at the baitshops nearest where you fish regularly -- they often have some insight on where the fish are biting and what they're biting on. I might spend a little more money taking this route but I sure like that small time feel in connection with fishing -- brings back feelings of the good ole days grin.gif

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Twenty years ago there were four bait shops you could pull up to by boat on Clearwater. Now there is one.

Also gone is Twedt's Country Store, off the water, but on Hwy 24. Joe would give you bait, good conversation, and local info. If you wanted a sandwich, he'd heat one in a toaster type oven (no microwaves then) and visit with you while you ate. Try to find that anymore.

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Thanks guys I think I will take the advice and try out many of the small shops, although there are not too many around my town. I think there is one off of Hwy 65 right off Lake Netta but I dont know of many others. I also cant resist buying at Cabelas or Gander Mountain, real good selection hard to beat! Thanks again. Have a great day!
Nicebass
Blaine, MN

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One of the best bait and tackle shops in my area is Mike's Bait and Tackle in Eden Valley, MN. Mike is one of THE best sources of information and has some of the most energetic minnows you've ever seen.

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Timberline Sports in Blackduck Mn, beside it's hard to argue when they gave me 200 on my used Zercom in trade for the fl18!!! - nunzio

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If we're just talking livebait here, Swansons in Hackensack and S&W in Brainerd both offer topnotch stuff. The once great Koep's-- perhaps the best bait shop of all-time-- has now turned into little more than a money-pit for vacationers.

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If your ever in the Alexandria area I have always been completely satisfied with NorthEast Outfitters. Great selection of tackle and bait. Its nice to have a place that doesn't count every single shiner they put in my bucket. I have to agree with Spike also it has helped me in the past buying bait from a shop near the lake you fish most. The hot spots become more abundant as they see your face.

New to this HSOforum and can't believe how great it is. Good luck on opener all.

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If you are as new to fishing as you say you are, learn as much as you can on how to fish with a JIG. It's the most versitile approach you can get. Combine a selection of jigs with live bait or plastics and you can't go wrong. Always look for a good weedline, point, hump or rocks and you will catch fish. If you have a boat, take the time to scout and mark off the area you want to fish.

Take a kid with you.

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Hey BobberDown,
Do you shop at Chrisrphersons in Alex. much? Have a buddy who swears its the best bait shop in that end of the state (bought his stepson a NICE castin set up from them). I'm tryin to find a decent place where I can get some gear at the last minute when I'm out at a couple of buddies out there. Because you can only buy so much from the Hoffman Amoco.

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BigClean,

I used to go to Christopherson's before NorthEast Outfitters opened. They have some decent items/bait there but I'm sold on NE Outfitters. It's hard living 100 miles out and getting good qualified reports besides on this page. The fellas at NE are always willing to share also. They have everything a person needs and at good prices. Check them out if you get a chance. Good luck on the late ice/opener.

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I would have to second the opinion on Vados Bait Shop. Best bait shop in the Twin Cities.

Worst bait shop - Mike's Bait in Chisago Co. - next to Green Lake. Bad bait, high prices and bad information if they have any info at all.

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There used to be a bait shop in the Alex area where the owner would use a shot glass to measure out a dozen crappie minnows. When I first saw this I asked what the deal was -- he said it will always be 13 and sometimes 14 minnows. Naturally, I checked on my purchase and it was 26 -- I had ordered 2 dozen. But, I did not go back.

A good shop I failed to mention earlier is the Tackle Castle just north of Onamia at the intersection of 169 and 27 (across the road from Meleen's). Lundeen gives good info and has good live bait. Tackle selection contradicts the name of the place, but it's a good stop.

The pawn shop to the southwest, across 169, sells lots of reconditioned, but good reels, and has pretty good bargains on lots of stuff. Worth a browse or two when in the area. Rapalas are always on sale and he usually has some discontinued favorites.

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I agree with Walleye One on the worst being Mikes up on Hwy 8 north of Forest Lake. That is the only place I have ever been in my life that counted crappie minnows. stingy

There is a new shop by Bald Eagle Lake north of White Bear Lake and south of Hugo in the Marathon Gas station/bait shop/liquor store on Hwy. 61. Pretty good on the bait for those of us who live on the east side, not up to par with Vados, but close.

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