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Catfish on the Horseshoe chain questions


styx

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I am intrigued by catfishing through the ice . I have no idea what this involves. Where is this horseshoe chain? Where do you access the lake? I am doing a little research to plan a trip and would appreciate any help I can get.

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You guys are lucky to have this fishery up there and not too many people take advantage of it even during soft water. This chain has become a favorite of mine. My grandparents lived on a bay up there. Every year that is what I would look forward to doing, was the great catfishing. I may have meet some of you before on the ice watching you guys pull the cats out. Enjoy the great fishery, there are plently up there that are over 10 pounds. Good luck this season.

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Well I'm no expert on Cats through the ice but I live on the chain and fish it religously especially for winter cats.

As far as lakes the chain consists of many lakes and bays with the sauk river running through the heart of the whole system. As for ice fishing some of the best lakes are Horseshoe,Long,Cedar-Island and of course some of the winter holes in the river. As far as size most of the fish will run 2-4 lbs average with a few over 5 and ocassionally fish over 8-10 lbs. My personall best was a 16 lber through the ice a couple of years ago. This summer I CPR a 14 lber and no of fish bigger taken. For presentation I have had my best luck fishing spoons especially GO-DEVILS. I also have great success dead-lineing minnow rigs. The cats on the chain tend to be aggressive early in the year untill the fishing pressure takes it's toll on them then they can become tricky. When the bite gets nuetral, I have found that down-sizeing to smaller diameter line (4 lb test) and smaller spoons (1/16 oz etc) is the ticket to iceing mid to late season cats. Over the years the secret about the cats in the chain has got out and the pressure has picked up. So please keep a few for a meal and release a few for the future.

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Are there certain areas to access the chain that you guys would suggest for someone not familiar with the chain yet. I don't plan on fishing the river channel unless I go with someone who knows the area. Also do they bite better during the evening and night like in the summertime?

I hope to make the march 5th get together but would like to get out there in earlier in the season also.

thanks

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Styx: Most of the lakes have a "main" winter access. The 2 lakes that I have hit for cats are Long and of course Horseshoe. Although I haven't been to Long in a coule of years. It is a fun experience to pull them up through the hole. A big key to driving on the chain is to stay on the "roads' until you are familiar with where you are. There are a few places for walking out but not too many.

So Icehawk has the ice started to form on the shores yet?

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Chemist; No ice yet but with temps like this its a good sign for sure. I can't wait my arm just keeps twitching I guess that's a sign of a severe Ice junkie.

Styx: Chemist was right stick to the main roads and you will be fine. The whole chain is a river system and with that in mind there is alot of current and the ice thickness can vary. One of the more popular access points is the winter access on Horseshoe if your coming from St Cloud on Hwy 23 take a left on Hwy 22 go about 2-3 miles it will be on your right side. Directly across from this spot is a good access to Cedar Island. The access to long is on the South side. Shoot me a email when you would like to venture out, I am usally out there and you can tag along with me and I'll show you some great cat spots.

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Ice Hawk- If you would allow another tag along- I'd be up for venturing out on the lake as well. I just moved to St.Cloud this fall and was bummed out I couldn't make it down to Richmond last year.

NOW that I live here, I hope to get out a bit more!

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I look forward to coming to Richmond for the ICE Series event for Cats.

I'm almost certain the Linder boys did a shoot out there a few years ago when the made one of their most up to date videos (probably 2 years old now) and they were on a lake with a river system through it. With all the houses in the back ground, it had to be for those cats through the ice...... there rods were pumpin'!

I can't wait! cool.gif

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IceHawk,

thanks for the offer to help out. I would like to tag along for one of your outings. I bought a map of the lakes in the area and can't wait to give it a try. How can I get a hold of you . I can't seem to find your email address anywhere. If you prefer you can email me at ddtran002 at yahoo dot com

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Yep, I believe the Linder's put that footage on the In-Fisherman Ice Tech video if I'm not mistaken. Maybe it was somewhere else though, I donno.

I agree, Ice Hawk and Dennis know their stuff about those cats out on the Horseshoe. They taught me the ropes out there grin.gif

Good Fishin,

Matt Johnson

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Styx and BRK you guys are more than welcome to tag along. You can reach me at [email protected] The video you guys saw by the linders was filmed at the meth hole on Horseshoe, in fact I have seen Jimmy L and Dan S quite a few times on the chain.

Dennis and Matt thanks for the comments. I am looking forward to iceing cats with you guys again this winter.

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