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December Red Lake Report

  • lindyrig79
    Participant
    Forest Lake / Lake Mille Lacs
    Posts: 3305
    #1896337

    Just got back from my first Red Lake trip. Friday went out of JRs, they had a bridge over a pressure ridge out to 14 ft of water that they just opened up. Lots of people out. Most of the reports I had heard previous was 10/11ft of water, but decided to try deeper based off the resort suggestion and one other group we knew up there

    Started slow but we started getting a few fish around dusk. There were probably over 100 houses spread out in that area we were in… but everyone started leaving around dusk and the exodus continued until around 6 or 6:30 pm literally everyone had left and we were the only house out there. Not sure if people were moving back across the pressure ridge and shallower or if they were just going in, but it seemed odd. Our best fishing was between 5:30 and 8:30pm in 14 ft and we had a blast .

    Saturday was slow for us. We moved once, but maybe should have moved more or tried shallow. Picked up a couple more Sun morning before packing up and heading home

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    moustachesteve
    Participant
    Twin Cities
    Posts: 540
    #1896346

    Thanks for the report! Glad you could get on some. Doesn’t hurt to stay out after dusk; you can’t catch fish without a line in the water

    bigcrappie
    Participant
    Blaine
    Posts: 3082
    #1896352

    So with the 17″ slot, was it hard to get those under 17″ fish? I went up 2 weeks ago when you could keep 20″ fish, we never caught anything under 18″.

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    lindyrig79
    Participant
    Forest Lake / Lake Mille Lacs
    Posts: 3305
    #1896393

    Is Red known for more of a day bite? Is that maybe why everyone was heading in? Just seemed crazy to me to watch every single house leave so early. Granted there were lots more people in that 10-12 ft depth.

    ______________
    Inactive
    MN - 55082
    Posts: 1644
    #1896399

    I’ve not fished for walleye at night too frequently, but the bite often seemed to take a few hours to get going again after the dusk bite tapered out. I’m sure it’s variable as you experienced.
    Early ice, I’ve always found the day bite pretty easy and the low light bite pretty good with a noticeable tail-off in activity. Also, the majority are heading in to clean fish and eat dinner. Once the sleepers are out, it’s more game-on due to a captive audience on both sides.

    We used to chase crappie all night when they were thick.

    Rodwork
    Participant
    Farmington, MN
    Posts: 2461
    #1896406

    Thanks for the report. I will be up there in a little over 2 weeks and I can’t wait.

    Gerty
    Participant
    Posts: 202
    #1896407

    We went out of JR’s on Friday but stayed in one of the houses they had on the lake. Very slow for us as they were not able to move the houses out to the deeper un-pressured water yet. Our night bite consisted of only had a couple on rattle reels between both nights. @lindyrig79 I also talked to another person who was out way to west in the deeper water and did very well both days. Red typically has a pretty good dark bite so not sure why everyone was leaving at dark. We saw the mass exit while sitting in our house each night.

    moustachesteve
    Participant
    Twin Cities
    Posts: 540
    #1896416

    Obviously it’s not going to happen without the wheel houses out but I’ve always had a great night bite on URL. Rattle reels wake you up every 20 minutes!

    lindyrig79
    Participant
    Forest Lake / Lake Mille Lacs
    Posts: 3305
    #1896437

    So with the 17″ slot, was it hard to get those under 17″ fish? I went up 2 weeks ago when you could keep 20″ fish, we never caught anything under 18″.

    Yeah kinda was. Friday night we kept our 2 big ones and then 4 fish under 17″. The rest of the fish on Sat and Sun morning were too big.

    lindyrig79
    Participant
    Forest Lake / Lake Mille Lacs
    Posts: 3305
    #1896466

    Early ice, I’ve always found the day bite pretty easy and the low light bite pretty good with a noticeable tail-off in activity. Also, the majority are heading in to clean fish and eat dinner. Once the sleepers are out, it’s more game-on due to a captive audience on both sides.

    Thanks for the response. I was wondering if people were just going in for dinner…. just surprised it was everyone LOL

    Ice Cap
    Participant
    Posts: 1985
    #1896546

    I was up Thursday and headed back Sunday morning. Only got a couple hours fishing in on Thursday. Had to get myself organized in my wheel house on shore. Shovel the snow from around it get the furnace fired up etc. etc.
    Caught one just over 17 Thursday but cut him loose. The wind kicked up a bit late afternoon and being by myself I knew it was going to be a struggle with getting the flip over folded back up so I wanted to do that before it got dark. Glad I did because it was a struggle.

    Friday was better and caught 6 total. Kept a 19 and a just under 17. Cut loose a couple more 19’s Then lost 2 more. One spit the hook while on the ice. I let loose of him for 2 seconds while trying to measure him and 2 flops and he hit the hole head first and was gone. Saturday wasn’t as good but it was much more difficult to find a spot away from the crowds as there were tons of people out there. Still managed to put a couple more in the bucket.

    Caught them on all kinds of stuff. Lindy glow spoons with or without a minnow head. Jiggin Raps with no minnow worked as did Rippin Raps. I have a small gold holographic kind of spoon that worked with a minnow head. It was a mixed bag with the dead stick being just that. Dead. Sometimes you would see the mark and get a strike right away other times you had to play them up and down the water column and then they would disappear without trying to even nibble.

    All in all a good time and enough fish to eat and enough marking and playing to keep it interesting all day! Cold front moving in up there for most of this week so should be able to get the wheelhouse out next trip. I’ll let the cold front move through and let the weekend pass as there will be tons of people. I’ll head up next Monday or Tuesday and then leave Friday before the masses show up again.

    Retirement has it’s perks! toast

    Mike
    Participant
    Eyota MN
    Posts: 74
    #1896576

    We are heading up Friday and hopefully staying in an ice castle from red lake ice cabins. Hopefully there biting had pretty bad luck last year but went later in the season

    nu98walleye
    Participant
    Posts: 70
    #1896678

    Was up Saturday & Sunday out of Westwind. Saturday was busy and the fishing was a little slower but still plenty of action. Lots of over size fish out there id say we had a 4-1 ratio of over to under 17″ eyes.

    As for the majority of the people leaving around dusk IMO is because of a couple reasons.

    * its just easier to pack up while you still have some light left.
    * safety – early ice is unpredictable and crossing cracks/ridges.
    * 8 hours in a portable is long enough we were out by 8am both days so by 4pm were more than ready to clean & eat our fish.

    belletaine
    Participant
    Nevis, MN
    Posts: 5116
    #1896690

    I’m excited to get the new to me wheelhouse out. Very cold temps this week should speed things up.
    It’s a pretty amazing fishery when you think of the pounding it takes year in & year out.

    I’ve always had pretty good luck with the day bite. Once the ice is driveable and a guy can get as far away from other people as possible.

    BoatsHateMe
    Participant
    Between Pool 2 and Pool 4
    Posts: 757
    #1897940

    Been a very slow first 24 hours. 2 shorts and one either side of the slot. Partner has 3 in the bucket. Renting a house so moving not a great option. Sounds like what we have is about average.

    Dusty Gesinger
    Participant
    Minnetrista, Minnesota
    Posts: 2413
    #1897971

    No portables with to venture away from the crowd during the day?

    BoatsHateMe
    Participant
    Between Pool 2 and Pool 4
    Posts: 757
    #1898178

    Our spot wasn’t that crowded. There was a string of 4 houses off on our own, no traffic nearby either. We rented an ice castle from Northwoods Fishouses so it was a lazy man’s weekend. We left the portable and gear at home.
    Put 7 in the bucket for the weekend. Lost a couple at the whole, threw back a couple overs and shorties. Bigger fish was 23”. Just about everything I bagged was on a Wonderbread Spoon of a couple different varieties and I tried a lot of different lures. Definetly a pattern with that. Also every fish that came through the hole was caught on a hole minnow. Jogging spoons etc had the whole minnow tail hooked. Nothing at all using minnow heads.

    We went out of Morts and upon the recommendation of Popeye, owner of Northwoods Fishhouses, we got or fatheads there. Glad we did, excellent size on the fatheads.

    Ice Cap
    Participant
    Posts: 1985
    #1898295

    Friend of mine went out of Rogers yesterday. His report was things are pretty slow but not surprising as it’s been a nasty cold front for a couple days. But they brought home some eaters. Finding fish 17 and under is the new challenge. I don’t mind it as I generally have always released anything over 19 anyhow.

    I’m heading up tomorrow to stay for a couple days. @BoatsHateMe was Mort’s allowing half tons and single axle wheel houses out this weekend?

    BoatsHateMe
    Participant
    Between Pool 2 and Pool 4
    Posts: 757
    #1898296

    I’m heading up tomorrow to stay for a couple days. @boatshateme was Mort’s allowing half tons and single axle wheel houses out this weekend?

    I think so but I’m not 100%. I know the rental guys are able to use the access and I think I saw some private trucks and wheelhouses coming and going. We got our access pass ($10) and they never asked what we had, which was a Suburban, no house.

    BoatsHateMe
    Participant
    Between Pool 2 and Pool 4
    Posts: 757
    #1898325

    Here’s your Huckleberry. Sure where to get it or what it is. It was gifted to me by a friend, picked up at the St. Paul show. UV wonder bread spoon with gold glitter on the back. I also have one with a rattle very similar to a Buckshot. I didn’t use that one though.

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    Rob G
    Participant
    Posts: 91
    #1899935

    Any new ice report updates?

    Ice Cap
    Participant
    Posts: 1985
    #1900011

    I was up from last Wednesday to Saturday. Pulled off the ice about noon Saturday. Things were getting really busy lots of traffic. Fishing was very slow. Caught 5, lost 3 and marked a bunch that I couldn’t get to bite.

    We had a early ice season up there so maybe we are entering the slow season early too. I was drilling 16 to 18″ of ice I heard reports of 9″ but that seems weird for Red as ice is usually pretty consistent up there.

    Rob G
    Participant
    Posts: 91
    #1900020

    Just got home a hour ago. When out at Rogers in a 3/4 tow crew cab. to the Barrels were the ice and the pressure Ridge meet up and the go from 14.in to about 9in. that was about 4 miles out at the Barrels. No one past the barrles in a big truck. Bite was slow 4 guys two limits.Fish just today.

    were you out there with an ice house also?

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