Today’s Top 5
SK: Logan’s Lake Tobin leviathan — 32.5″ and 14 lbs on a PK Spoon:
Red River early-ice slob for Ryan K. — this 30-incher was suspended 12′ off bottom when she crushed a Whistler jig and minnow combo:
Randy G. busting ’em on Erie:
> Our best program was Hi Tech Custom Painted Baits DHJ tipped with Ziptailz, 80-120′ back. Our best speed was 1.1-1.3 mph.
Jake H.’s 30″ x 18″ side o’ ham, finned-out for the photo, hammered a Rippin’ Rap:
…even in ice fishing.
Brad Hawthorne’s go-anywhere ice fishing rig:
The Empire Strikes…Bro?
The Force is strong with this one:
…don’t think we’ve ever seen this fish pose before:
2. SD: Takasaki spills the beans… …on crappie factory Lake Thompson.
Kicks butt, won’t break the bank.
> Typically it’s the subtle movements that make plus-sized panfish commit to biting. However, sometimes when they lose interest you need to get “noisy” to call them back in, before slowing things back down.
Doug L. of ND Fish & Game on ice safety.
…from Uncut Angling’s Aaron Wiebe. In other news, new Uncut Angling offshoot show pits anglers in 39-consecutive-hour team tournament. Airs this Jan.
TODAY only. Northland also has a sharp new website.
…regarding commercial fishing.
Merc also earns 5th consecutive “Green master” honors.
> On the Rainy River, excellent fishing in open water continues. Anchor up with a jig and minnow. Evenings best overall but fish being caught all day.
Ballard’s Resort is optimistic for first ice. In the past they’ve gone from open water to open for business in less than 7 days.
From Woodland Resort:
> Not much has changed the past week with ice conditions…. Creel Bay remains open for the most part along with Main Bay, East Bay, and East Devils Lake. Northern lakes are reporting 5-7″ and 3-4″ on Pelican Lake. Minimal snow (2-3″) where the lake is frozen. Will continue to update as the weather cools off.
Tyler Brasel of Bear Paw Guides (218-368-3755):
> Fishing has been steady with most everyone I’ve talked to getting their limits with ease. The morning and evenings being prime time, but still picking up fish all throughout the day.
> At first light I would start out on the main break in 6-7′. Don’t be afraid to move just off the break in 8-9′ once the sun starts to rise and if the fish start to slow down. Slide back in shallow and set up shop for the evening run.
> I’ve been having great luck lately with gold and orange jigging spoons, but this time of year fish are so aggressive they’ll hit just about anything.
> The past couple days we have received roughly 4″ of snow. The wind picked up in our favor and blew a lot of it off the lake, causing spots that are bare ice — aiding the people dragging pors out by foot. We have been finding an average of 7.5″ of ice on the eastern side where we access the lake.
> That being said, I recommend everyone to play it safe and always check with the resort or access you are using for current conditions and places to avoid. Early ice is never 100% safe! There are lots of options for accesses on the east side.
Nice shot. That’s the new Rattlin’ Blade Spoon from Clam.
Tip of the Day
> The best ice anglers are lifelong students of their favorite species. They know about spawning, habitat, behavioral patterns, meaningful predator/prey relationships, seasonal movements, cover, and structure types that dictate their location throughout the season.
> The best anglers fish the best destinations. Not just the best places, but the best time of year, time of day, on the best structure, while using the best methods.
> The best guides and anglers I’ve ever fished with have an extremely positive attitude.
> The best anglers work hard. They’re mobile, but not just for mobility’s sake.
> For the advanced angler, technology isn’t to be feared, it’s to be exploited.
Check this stuff out!