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Naturboy

Where are we going to fish first?

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Ok I put the boat away, put up the Christmas lights and now I'm waiting for ICE. Most times I go fishing and decide where to go as I start driving, but I do have a good idea where I'll end up. This is the perfect time of the year to brose around the Minnesota Lake Finder page to find that new lake that will be your next honey hole. Just like Santa I'm making my list and checking it twice.

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I think first time wetting the lines this year will be URL on 12/16.  15 day looks terrific (finally).  Who knows, might even be able to pull the castle out by then.

On the flip side, I don't think we'll see enough ice before then down in the cities to do a local first-outing.

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I've got some good early ice spots here in the Det Lakes area.  I am a crappie guy so I go out to some bigger lakes on some reed lined bays that freeze over......and some smaller lakes that should be good in 10 days or so with the cold snap coming.  I normally fish shallower on early ice around the remaining green weeds in that 8-10ft depth and do well.  Heck, my one spot in the bay of a bigger lake between 2 reed beds that make it wind protected I will be on 2-3" of ice (if good clear ice) and within 20 yds there is open water out on the main lake...but I'm braver (or not as smart) than most :blush:

Most small ponds around here froze a week or so ago but warm with rain today so that is not good...we just need cold nights with no wind!

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6 hours ago, RiverChuckNorris said:

I think first time wetting the lines this year will be URL on 12/16.  15 day looks terrific (finally).  Who knows, might even be able to pull the castle out by then.

On the flip side, I don't think we'll see enough ice before then down in the cities to do a local first-outing.

That's the same plan for me hoping enough to get the castle out! Fingers crossed!

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I'll fish the Grand Rapids and Iron Range lakes earlier on for panfish. I'm looking forward to LOTW walleyes and Mille lacs, with this weather the ladder of the two probably won't be till after the first of the year.

Kettle

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Got out for my first ice trip yesterday on a small lake here in the Black Hills.  Only 3", but glass clear and hard.  Only a week later than usual.  Other smaller lakes should be getting more inches as we speak.  Larger lakes may take another week or two.

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December 9th/10th there will be a lot of ice fishing in central and northern MN.  It's only going to take a couple days to freeze things up really good.    

 

It's funny how worked up people are this year over a seemingly normal winter.  I agree it seems warm, but I've fished in the Brainerd area every year for the last 14-15, the 2nd weekend of December.  This year is going to be cutting it close, but I think it's going to happen!  The forecast looks wonderful!  We just need the snow to cooperate, and the rumor is there is a big one on the horizon.  

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A small lake about 3 miles from deer camp, max depth in lake is 8' and it's loaded with 22" to 26" pike. Great Lake to start the spearing season out on due to it developing good ice faster than the bigger deeper lakes. This size fish works great for my pickling recipe that I make and bring to the family x mas gatherings.

 Looking like we may make it out by the 15th???????? Cross your fingers.

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Metigoshe... or somewhere else over in ND is always hit first. Around here after this week some of the ponds that hold fish will start locking up, the overnight temps look ideal for ice building. 

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I'm thinking Shields Lake in southern MN might be a good one to hit. There is a secret spot where those huge crappies hang out and an occasional bull bluegill will hit.

 

Also thinking the Willow Lake SD area is a good one to hit for big perch and walleyes.

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31 minutes ago, Rick said:

I'm thinking Shields Lake in southern MN might be a good one to hit. There is a secret spot where those huge crappies hang out and an occasional bull bluegill will hit.

 

Also thinking the Willow Lake SD area is a good one to hit for big perch and walleyes.

 

What time will you be swinging by to pick me up? I'll get the bait.;)

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Not sure how close I live to Firebase Rolling Thunder but I do have a dog named Zeus. :) milliexmacks2014.jpg

He's the boy front and center. He is a couple years older now :) 

Paul Waldowski's Dazzie is just above him.

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41 minutes ago, Rick said:

I'm thinking Shields Lake in southern MN might be a good one to hit. There is a secret spot where those huge crappies hang out and an occasional bull bluegill will hit.

 

Also thinking the Willow Lake SD area is a good one to hit for big perch and walleyes.

 

Fished Shields lake for years growing up with my buddy that had a cabin on it. Nothing but big Bullheads! :(

But, if you have a secret spot for big crappies? :)

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I got bullheads there, too...and some assorted panfish. That's about it. Did better on Mazaska.  Where you that guy in the boat who kept swearing and slinging bullheads across the water?! :P

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The bullheads are no longer in their glory days in the Southern MN lakes. Not sure what happened to them as they were fun and good eating too. :D 

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My Dad and I would come home with a 5 gal pail FULL of 'em in the late 70's, and deep fry up a huge platter of 'em. Danged good eatin'! The platter was always empty at meals end...

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58 minutes ago, Rick said:

The bullheads are no longer in their glory days in the Southern MN lakes. Not sure what happened to them as they were fun and good eating too. :D 

 

Well I wouldn't say what my buddies Dad would say about all the folks that stayed at the resort on the other end of the lake from his cabin.

Something about taking all the bullheads back to Iowa! ;)

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Oh, you haven’t seen me upset.  After I miss 5 straight - then I get upset! 😁
    • dog is good too, did not know it then, but when I was over seas and had some and found out later.. it was the last tome ...  would not say try it cause they are my friends....
    • I'm sure it's tasty, but I have never tried dog either. Calm down people, I am just kidding around.   We used to keep landscaping supplies out on a farm in Rosemount back in the day, and blast away at them when they emerged from the barn. Sticking with the Clint theme.............. Farm cats gotta eat, same as worms.   Being a member of the dove family, I am sure the meat is simular.  
    • Remember, he liked the neighbors food after he tried it. 😋
    • I fished most of the lake in scout mode today.  Found walleyes early on midlake humps and bars in 18-24 fow.  Got a couple to go on jigging raps but then they shut off.  Spent the rest of the day trying to pin down a panfish pattern.  Found good numbers of sunfish in shallow cabbage beds(6-9 fow).  None were huge but good numbers of 8-8 1/2" gills.  A few crappies are mixed in with them and some are suspending off the break.  There are also good numbers of sunfish in or just outside the reeds.   Most of the sunfish ran smaller though although there were some keepers there too.  Pike and bass I did not target but saw others do so successfully.   Plenty of bass in the reeds and spinnerbaits seemed to be what most were using.   Troll over the weeds and you will be rewarded with pike.
    • I got primary on the Crow-Hassen with a rank of #21. New experience for me as well, with MBRB, been a member for a few years just could never get a hunt.   DanBo - That was one I had on my list as I have a buddy that lives just a few blocks up from there.
    • try them before you knock them....
    • we've only  used the adapter so far at the campsites, as I've only seen the standard plug in's at the boxes; and only running some lights and AC at the most at one time, no fridge to run
    • That is crazy nice Hoey.  😎   But for $3,400 I'll just keep my dirt flakes on the floor and may be pick up another used sled or wheeler! 😋
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