Time for a long overdue report from up at the pond. Unless you’ve been hiding out in the witness protection program you’ve probably already gotten the message – MILLE LACS IS BACK!!
My season started out just before the Christmas holidays checking shoreline structure spots with fellow IDO member Rick Ziesmer and we were not disappointed. Both rock and weed spots were producing and many of the mid-sized fish from the strong 2013-14′ year classes and also some very quality fish including a couple keep-able slot fish. Rick even managed to do something that I’ve never seen while ice fishing as he pulled in a 20″ sucker. Our best tactic was to stay mobile while jigging and set up a couple tip-ups at various depths.
This initial trip was quickly followed up by a maiden voyage to the mud flats with James and camera man in tow. As you may have seen this trip turned into a home run, however it was by no means easy as we covered a lot of water looking for the right fish. Staying mobile is key during the daylight hours is key while searching for fish but making sure that you’re set up before the prime evening bite window. We had our best luck during mid-day in 29-32′ on the bottom edge of flats and then following the fish up the break onto the top of the flats as the sun lowered. Not only do iFishpros help to put more fish on the ice by adding additional lines in the water but they also provide valuable information about where the fish are feeding. In order to help us keep track of exactly when the fish moved up we would set one iFishpro up shallow and leave one out deep which really helped us to stay on the active fish.
After having so much fun on those first two trips up couldn’t help but go back again. This time with my friend and kids in tow we headed out to check the Malmo area sand and were rewarded with similar results including another couple slot fish and one of the fattest walleyes I’ve caught in a couple years.
Hot baits have been the VMC rattle spoons in emerald shiner, VMC Tingler in glow gold fish, and the new Rapala Slab Raps in perch colors.
See you on the water!
PS – Don’t forget to bring the kids! Now is the perfect time to build their confidence by having a successful walleye outing and Mille Lacs is the perfect place.