Target Walleye/Ice email

Best trolling speed now, Dogs fish too, Opener prediction

Heads up: Might only be one TWI email this week. Was supposed to head to Wekusko Falls Lodge in MB this Fri but there’s another big snow storm comin’ (weird)…gonna try to leave a day early to beat the nasty. Thx much for reading!!

>> If you’re getting this Target Walleye/Ice email for the first time, a friend probably signed you up!

Today’s Top 4

Fishing opener 2018….

Love my Lund 1825 Pro Guide, but at this rate a windshield might be a better option for fishing opener:

Not sure Lund will be making those anytime soon (lol), but they are rolling out a new “Blackout” edition this season…. MN guide Toby Kvalevog just picked his up in the 2075 Pro Guide model. #Wowza

Me likey:

Mark Romanack: Trolling for early-season walleye.

The Fishing 411 TV father-son duo puts out a ton of quality info — click here to check out their website stacked full of walleye goodness. Full cold-water trolling tip here, few excerpts below:

> In ice-cold water walleye will bite, but they’re reluctant to chase fast moving food. Trollers after early- and late-season walleye are going to find that speeds ranging from 0.7-1.5 mph produce the most bites.

> Second only to speed, the next concern…is lure action. Crankbaits produce the vast majority of the DD walleye caught every year on the Great Lakes. About a thousand different brands, models, sizes and colors of crankbaits are on the market and only a small assortment routinely catch walleye in cold water.

Here’s a short list of Mark’s fav proven cold-water crankbaits:

> Rapala Husky Jerk and Down Deep Husky Jerk series, Reef Runner 800 and 600 series baits, the Storm Deep Jr. ThunderStick, Yo-Zuri Crystal Minnow Deep Diver and the Smithwick Perfect 10.

> All of these lures have a subtle action that is best described as a top-to-bottom rolling action…closely imitates a slowly-swimming minnow.

Haven’t personally ran the Deep Jrs, but they look tasty:

Deer hunting fishing on the Rainy River???

Sent in from TW reader Zac Bernier:

> Tim Koski went to the Rainy River for walleye this week — caught a deer instead!

Bet it fought like a 67″ sturgeon:

Actually not surprised after seeing his secret fishing spot:

Fishing dogs > hunting dogs.

Elle and “Shep” closed out the hardwater walleye season on Lake Winnipeg, MB with a 30.25″ slush melon:

Fish-head Kyle Hildreth’s gonna have to step up his river-rat game to impress the #brownhound

Choney the dachshund caught his first walleye on Lesser Slave Lake, AB. Would this be considered sushi?

Iines the rottweiler won’t be getting fish for dinner this time. #AForEffort

Nick Sparks’s fishing buddy ain’t no lap dog — Smooth Moves is gonna have to come out with a canine-friendly suspension seat:


1. MN: LOTW walleye season closes Apr 15….

One last hurrah for those headed to the Rainy River and/or Lake of the Woods. Don’t forget: the pike season never closes — guys are still running an auger extension on the main lake…so plenty of time left to get in on the flaggin’ fun.

2. MN: Bemidji has a new bait shop.

Called Northwoods Bait & Tackle. Place looks great in the pics/vids I’ve seen online — hope to check it out soon-ish in person.

Their big grand opening is on Sat, Apr 28 with guys like Gary Roach, Bro, Matt Breuer and even Jason Rylander was somehow invited? Lol kidding man! Thinking it might be a great pit-stop on the way to or from the Rainy River….

3. ND: Still over 30″ of ice on Devils Lake.

If you’re looking for a last-minute ice trip, Woodland Resort has some rockin’ deals for the rest of Apr — talkin’ dang near half-off lodging rates. #NotRoughingIt

4. MN/SD: Big Stone wally opener Apr 21.

> Artie Arndt: “Give me a few 1/16-oz ‘parakeet’ color Northland Fire-Ball Jigs and a scoop of fatheads, and I’m in business.”

You read that right…1/16-oz. They catch ’em tight to shore in spring, right where water meets the shoreline rocks. #Jackpot

5. MB: New ice-fishing sportshow.

Coming to Winnipeg Nov 17-18. ‘Bout time!

6. Should Aqua-Vu make spearing decoys?

Been seeing more and more vids of pike actually hitting Aqua-Vu underwater cameras — luckily most spit it out like this toothy critter did:

Would love to paint one up as a spearing decoy. At the bare minimum it would be a back-saver, though maybe not legal?

7. Blackfish wins “Best of Show”…

…Booth Display Award at the Northwest Sportshow. Guess that new performance fishing gear isn’t the only thing they do that looks good:

8. Whatcha wanna see from Phantom Lures??

They’re working on some how-to fishin’ vids and wants to know what you wanna see. Planer board trolling? 3-way rigs?? An umbrella rig loaded with crankbaits and fished under a bobber??? Let ’em know here.

9. Do you have the right boat insurance?

Worldwide Marine’s Bob Luellen is hosting a free webinar May 7, talkin’ different boat insurance options to make sure you’re covered. Great chance to ask him Qs about something most of us don’t know enough about — click here to register.

10. Lose in tourneys and still win $$$.

If you’re making tourney plans for 2018 and have a LEER truck cap/cover — or are thinking about getting one — sign up for the Cover Cash program. Gives you a shot at making dough even if you don’t win…which I can sure appreciate lol.

11. VT walleye season opens May 5.

12. Free Navionics webinars.

13. DC: Interior dept head likes boaters.

Said: “Boats are good. A lot of boats are better.”

Unless they’re fishin’ your secret lake spot….

14. Another #SeaFoamWorks story.

Charles N. from TX:

> “After going a year without use, I started my Mercury 125 outboard — noticed rough idling and stalling out. I contacted Sea Foam’s tech line and was given instructions — it worked, Sea Foam fixed it! The method worked quick to clean the idle jets, and now my outboard is running smoothly. Thanks for your help.”

Tip of the Day

Simply put: Tadpoles let you troll your crankbaits deeper…like up to 50′ deeper if need be. Easy to use, inexpensive and underutilized.

> Lots of anglers are using OR36 Tadpole Resettable Divers these days to target suspended walleye. Most are using standard leader lengths (48-60″) from the Tadpole to the trailing lure.

> Shortening up the leader length often makes a difference in how fish react to the presentation. When trolling with shallow-diving stickbaits, I’ve found that a shorter leader gives the lure more action and often out produces standard leader lengths.

> When fishing crawler harnesses shortening up the leader to about 12″ has produced surprisingly well on my boat. Shorter leads are not always better, but it’s amazing how often a short leader will put more fish in the box.

Quote of the Day

Step out of your comfort zone….

– What Michael Olson of Fish Addictions TV said while chasing mega lake trout on Lake Athapapuskow, MB (I can’t pronounce it either). Love his message:

> “Go somewhere you’ve always wanted to go. Do something you’ve always wanted to do. Pursue a fish you’ve always wanted to pursue, but never have. That’s what fishing is all about…I’m telling you you’re not going to regret it.”

Will Pappenfus stepped out of his comfort zone and into a once-in-a-lifetime laker on that trip…though once-in-a-lifetime happens more often in Manitoba:

Today’s ‘Eye Candy

Devils Lake, ND is over 200K acres and growing — how’d you like to cast shallow-running cranks at this fish crib? #sightseeing

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Who is Target Walleye/Ice
Target Walleye/Ice — walleye during open water and all species during hardwater — is brought to you by Al and Ron Lindner, Jim Kalkofen, Brett McComas and other diehard fish-nuts like you! #fishheads
Brett McComas is the main man for Target Walleye/Ice. He was discovered in Brainerd, MN after years of wondering how in the heck people break into the fishing biz. He’s in it now, but still can’t answer that question…. Brett is one of those guys who majored in marketing, only because there was no such thing as a “fishing degree” at the time…. Get him at

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