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Namakan Tomorrow! Anyone been recent?

  • eauclaireboys
    Participant
    Eau Claire wi
    Posts: 131
    #2041119

    So excited to be heading back up north tomorrow. We have spent 12 years fishing rainy east of the narrows and thought we would change things up this year and camp and fish on Namakan.

    Any recent reports?

    We will be on Mica Island stop by for a cold one!

    grubson
    Participant
    Harris, Somewhere in VNP
    Posts: 754
    #2041209

    I was up there over memorial weekend. Fishing was tough, we caught fish but struggled to find anything consistent. We caught some fish early in the day in shallow bays trolling shad raps and pitching jigs towards the shoreline but it wasn’t fast and furious by any means.
    Dock fishing in the evenings was very slow compared to most years. We’ve noticed a significant lack of crayfish in the area around our dock the last two years and the fishing has really been poor there since.
    Our best presentation was trolling deep Husky Jerks in 18-22ft during the day. Bottom contact and speed were very crucial.
    I think the cold front during memorial weekend had them in a funk. We didn’t find a concentration of walleyes anywhere, just one here, one there. I think stable weather would help that.
    Good luck, stay mobile, and always fish the windy side.

    Greg Krull
    Participant
    South Metro / Pool 4
    Posts: 132
    #2042550

    Hey gang,
    Heading to Namakan on Wednesday morning for my first trip to VNP. Some things seem a bit unclear to me. Do you just park your truck and trailer at the Ash River Visitor’s center? (I know I entered my truck’s information when I reserved our campsite) Do you check in, or just head out? Is there a spot to post your permit at the campsite? Should I laminate it at work today?
    Sorry, lot’s of questions and tried to search for the answers before asking.
    Excited for the trip!
    Thanks!

    eauclaireboys
    Participant
    Eau Claire wi
    Posts: 131
    #2042566

    After you launch your boat you just find a place to park and then head out to camp. There are dumpsters for you to use to throw trash away on your way out. There are also pit toilets at the landing if needed.

    We got home on Thursday and we camped on Mica Island for 3 nights.

    We have done 12 years on rainy and decided this year to change it up and stay on Namakan. Without knowing where to fish we spent 2 days hunting.

    The only thing we could catch fish consistantly were plastics. We did best on white paddle tails, pink landed fish too. Storm 360 and B Fishin, we’re the 2 brands that we used and worked well. I would highly suggest picking these up if you don’t have them in your box already.

    Most fish came out of 4-8 FOW. We just casted to shore and brought them back. Fished lots of bays and inner islands. We fished a few islands that were out in the open along the markers but never got anything.

    Our best location was Johnson Bay!

    We caught only 1 fish on minnows which we used a lot but just never produced. If it were me going back this week I would not buy any.

    As our bag of fish were mixed we Caught a lot of really nice smallies tons of hammer handles and 10 keeper walleyes in our 3 days.

    Good luck this week pack lots of sunscreen, bug spray and for sure a fly swater for each person. The deer flies were a bit bothersum in Camp.

    mojocandy101
    Participant
    Alexandria, MN
    Posts: 33
    #2042571

    We just got back from a week of camping on the north end of Sandpoint lake just before the Namaken narrows. We launch our boats in at the crane lake public launch, park our trucks there, and head out to the island. No checking in/out. There is no need to laminate the permit as each site has bear lockers that have a little mailbox type thing to place the permit in. We mostly walleye fish and it was tough as they just had a mayfly hatch the week before we got there. We marked a lot of fish in 20-26 FOW but they just were not hungry. It seamed that leeches behind lindy rigs did the best. Hope you have a screen tent packed as the mosquitoes are thick after dark.

    Good luck!

    BCNeal
    Participant
    Bloomington, MN
    Posts: 288
    #2042588

    We were up on Rainy, Kabetogama and Namakan June 1-June 9. To say fishing was tough would be an understatement.
    We fish hard every day and struggled to get bites. We saw record high temperatures, clear blue skies, rapidly increasing water temps and mayfly larva hatches that made fishing a struggle.
    We did mark fish on several occasions that just wouldn’t bite. The guides seemed to think they were gorging on the mayfly larva.
    We fished with jigs and minnows and plastics. I think most of our bites came on plastics fishing shallower water…12 feet or less. The fish we marked deeper just wouldn’t hit.
    I talked to one guy back at the resort who found a few walleyes on Namakan using crawlers but his results weren’t much better than ours.
    This record run of 90 degree temps sure hasn’t helped fishing conditions.
    Good luck!

    scottaheller
    Participant
    Posts: 132
    #2042603

    After you launch your boat you just find a place to park and then head out to camp. There are dumpsters for you to use to throw trash away on your way out. There are also pit toilets at the landing if needed.

    We got home on Thursday and we camped on Mica Island for 3 nights.

    We have done 12 years on rainy and decided this year to change it up and stay on Namakan. Without knowing where to fish we spent 2 days hunting.

    The only thing we could catch fish consistantly were plastics. We did best on white paddle tails, pink landed fish too. Storm 360 and B Fishin, we’re the 2 brands that we used and worked well. I would highly suggest picking these up if you don’t have them in your box already.

    Most fish came out of 4-8 FOW. We just casted to shore and brought them back. Fished lots of bays and inner islands. We fished a few islands that were out in the open along the markers but never got anything.

    Our best location was Johnson Bay!

    We caught only 1 fish on minnows which we used a lot but just never produced. If it were me going back this week I would not buy any.

    As our bag of fish were mixed we Caught a lot of really nice smallies tons of hammer handles and 10 keeper <strong class=”ido-tag-strong”>walleyes in our 3 days.

    Good luck this week pack lots of sunscreen, bug spray and for sure a fly swater for each person. The deer flies were a bit bothersum in Camp.

    Several year back on our trip to Nam we did really well on walleye and bass on the south end of Junction bay where the Johnson River flows into it. Slip bobbers with leaches floated with the current from the falls made for several good meals of fish! But that was the only place we could consistently find fish. I do recall catching more walleye on mepps shallow than any other method.

    Greg Krull
    Participant
    South Metro / Pool 4
    Posts: 132
    #2042630

    Sunscreen, bug spray, camp screened in tent. Check, check, check.

    Thanks for the help and replies!

    Will report when we get back.

    Dutchboy
    Participant
    International Falls a few miles from Rainy Lake
    Posts: 13189
    #2042680

    Which site do you have? Sounds like you will have great weather, it’s been windy but it feels good. Mid 70’s today.

    Greg Krull
    Participant
    South Metro / Pool 4
    Posts: 132
    #2042763

    We have the Kettle Falls portage campsite. Looks fun. We are in Cotton tonight and fishing Boulder tomorrow before heading up Wednesday morning.

    Krh129
    Participant
    Posts: 76
    #2043570

    Just got back from VNP first time. For us the bite was tough. Caught fish in 20-25 fow off reefs on the main lake of Namakan and in 10-14 feet first break line from shore. Kinda the same thing on Kab as well. Fished SP and Crane as well. Nothing consistent all week.

    Gold spinners .5 mph – 1 mph plastics or minnows seemed to work best. The plastics that worked best we’re paddle tails

    Smallies were up shallow and in 8-10 feet on reefs. Ned rig on the reef floating crank baits up shallow.

    We talked to a number of others who said fishing was slow and has been slow for 2 years. Curious what others think. I mean the place is freakin beautiful and tons of water and places to fish.

    Maybe just us…..

    Dutchboy
    Participant
    International Falls a few miles from Rainy Lake
    Posts: 13189
    #2043572

    Not just you. Early spring, weather, sold out resorts all play a part. Enjoy the sights & sounds, the fishing will go from bad to amazing.

    Carter Johnson
    Participant
    Anoka County
    Posts: 1087
    #2043617

    Will be up in VNP over the 4th. Hopefully the walleyes decide to turn on a little bit. Looking to just drag some jigs with crawlers. Little easier to keep alive for 5 days. Seems like deep reefs?

    Carter Johnson
    Participant
    Anoka County
    Posts: 1087
    #2049993

    Well better late than never. Was up there for 5 days over the 4th. Ended up fishing small mouth the whole time since they were extremely active. Best spots for me were wind blown islands with boulders on them. If it was slate rock it would not hold fish. spinner baits and X raps were the go to when the wind was blowing. In the morning top waters were also a good option.

    xplorer
    Participant
    Cloquet, MN
    Posts: 530
    #2050075

    The FW and I will be up camping on Nam starting tomorrow for a week. Looks like another warm, mostly dry week ahead (maybe some rain tonight tho).
    I’m guessing water temps are in the upper 70’s now. I’ll start looking for the eyes on the deeper edges of the reefs/rock island points. Hoping the smallies are still up shallower as we usually spend time after dinner most evenings til dark casting for them.
    Lots of swimming this trip for sure!
    I’ll drop a report when we get back, hope there’s something decent to report.

    TheFamousGrouse
    Participant
    St. Paul, MN
    Posts: 9549
    #2050090

    Several years ago we had a houseboat in VNP exactly this week of July.

    Most consistent walleye action was in the evenings. We pulled Lindy rigs or a bottom bouncer with spinner rig with crawlers and leeches or did slip bobber rigs when the wind produced a nice drift.

    We found almost all of our fish in shallow and close to weedlines. Between islands was also good. All 3 lakes had about the same bite. Any kind of good edge that the wind was blowing across tended to produce a few aggressive fish on the downwind dropoff.

    It seemed to be either fish on or bust at each spot. Seldom did grinding on a spot produce fish after the initial 10 minutes or 3-4 passes. Once we got the aggressive feeding fish, it seemed like the best move was to move on and hit another spot. I don’t recall ever having a second decent bite of multiple fish after the initial run of 2-5 fish in a given spot. I don’t think we ever got more than 6 fish in a spot without having to move at least a couple of hundred yards.

    Live bait was definitely worth it. Plastics did not produce at anything like the same rate.

    Good luck.

    Grouse

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