Target Walleye/Ice email

Record perch iced, Night-bite slabs tip, Dropshot walleyes vid

Today’s Top 5

Wow! Record jumbo perch caught in IA!!

Royce Krummen plucked this 2-lb 12.5-oz (16.25″) giant from a northwest IA pond on a small pink/yellow jig tipped with a wax worm. Ridonkulous girth!

Said the fish was big enough he started checking on the Internet, found out the IA state record was a 2.7-lb (16″) perch taken from Pool 12 on the Mississippi River. Knew his was in the ballpark, so brought it in to Kabele’s Trading Post to get an official weight and measurement:

Kabele’s owners Thane and Tanya saw the big perch and quickly called Mike Hawkins, DNR fisheries biologist, and Jeff Morrison, Dickinson County Conservation Officer, in to verify the length and weight.

> Royce: “The fish made one good run, and then I was able to bring it back toward the hole. When I got it close to the bottom of the hole, I saw the tail and thought it must be a big perch…then I thought it was maybe a bass. Finally, when I got its head to the hole, I saw it was definitely a big perch!”

Can’t tell if that fish looks more like a slobby European perch or a peacock bass — huge congrats, man!

Hunker down for after-dark crappies.

A pile of snow, ice and slush has made lake travel a nightmare this season. Without some sort of a track machine — even with one — “running and gunning” has been dang near impossible on many lakes.

The good news? Hunkering down in one spot can pay off BIG — especially when it comes to after-dark crappies. We tracked down fish-head Konnor Kleist to get his take on the finicky mid-season bite.

Might recognize Konnor from his appearances on In-Depth Outdoors, like this episode where they waxed some monster night-bite slabs. Check the full write-up on this, few excerpts below:


> Konnor: “By mid-winter, most crappies have left shallow weeds and are roaming deeper stuff — making ’em tough to find during the day. Instead of plopping down in the middle of a basin…look for differences among stuff that’s mostly the same.

> “[Example] A steep break might run for a long way and be pretty much the same, but then makes an inside turn or jut out into a point — that’s what I’m looking for. Technically I’m still fishing the basin (25′-30′) but the spot is close to some variance.

> “…best lakes have good water clarity and a mud bottom that’s conducive to zooplankton…the main forage source. Fish will be tight to the bottom at dusk and rise as the night goes on…following bugs as they rise out of the mud.”


> “I like using loud/aggressive stuff to call fish in from a distance…#3 Rapala Ultra Light Rippin’ Raps and 1/16-oz VMC Tingler Spoons are heavy in my rotation. I like the ‘pink tiger UV’…amazing the difference the glow makes at night and the white/pink combo really stands out.

> “On the Rippin’ Rap, I’ll run a few spikes on the rear trebles to weigh the back down…and add a little scent — be careful not to overdo it…can screw up the action.

> “It’s critical to run a dead-stick for this deal — a lot of times the more aggressive bait will bring fish into the zone, but they’ll shy away from actually eating.

> “Run a small tungsten jig/crappie minnow combo on a noodle rod instead of a traditional bobber set up…makes adjusting the depth of the set-line way quicker than to adjusting a bobber-stop every time.

> “You’ll get a feel of where in the water column fish are coming through as the night progresses — adjust the dead-stick as needed.”


> “Moon phase can play a big role…the best time is a full moon, but the waxing period approaching the full can be killer too.

> “Not to say that you can’t catch ’em during a new moon, but that big orb in the sky definitely helps fire up fish after dark.”

Did you know Eskimos can fly?

This one can anyway…. As seen by northern MN fishing guide Greg Clusiau. #GoneWithTheWind

Ouch! We’ve all been there….

Greg was nice enough to zip over with his truck and snag that Eskimo hub for ’em. His post said, “All in good shape and funny!” Funny is right, but glad to hear there were no casualties…peeps or shacks!

Btw if you’re not a fan of gettin’ down on all fours and crankin’ in ice anchors (for pop-up shacks) by hand, there’s a handful of different options out there….

Like this Ice Anchor Drill Adapter that attaches to any cordless drill — works with any ice anchors — and can even be used to crank in tip-ups:

If you’ve got an Ion or Ion X, there’s a quick-detach system that converts your auger into an ice-anchor installing machine. Could also be nice for breaking the auger down on back-country trips:

Pregnancy can cause stretch marks in walleyes too…?

And she’s never looked more beautiful [heart-eyes emoji]:

That WI pre-spawner was caught by big-fish junkie Austin Gates (@austin.gates1) on a #7 Rapala Jigging Rap. Gorgeous fish, dude!

Couple o’ hardwater merp spottings!

Jacob Perpeluk caught and released this Lake of the Prairies (MB/SK border) super merp on a “red dot glow” color PK Spoon. Looks like a dang frog lol!

TW fan Joey Pachak cracked a 12″ jumbo merp perch (merch?) outta Devils Lake, ND! Was using a “gold tiger” color Clam Rattlin’ Blade Spoon — one with the Pyrex-glass housing and Stainless steel BBs. #ClickClickBoom

Chris Stanley (@slab_seeker_stanley) caught his first-ever merp last weekend with this Lake Minnetonka, MN salt ‘n pepper:

Chris ^ said when the storm hit, so did the slabs. #Loaded’Bird


…to keep walleye fishing open this summer, including:

> A harvest season in May and in the fall, with catch-and-release walleye fishing otherwise. Chance of an unplanned walleye-closure under this option: 15-20%.

> 1-walleye harvest season from May to Jun 15, with catch and release otherwise and no fall harvest. Chance of an unplanned closure: 15-30%.

> 1-walleye harvest season from May to Jun 15, with a planned closure sometime in Jul and Aug: This option would include a 10-20% risk of an unplanned closure.

Sounds like we’ll know which route they’ll go sometime in March.

My 2c: Love me a fish dinner [!] but would like to see it open to catch and release the entire season — with no planned or unplanned closure — and grab a burger on the way home, rather than have fishin’ closed….

…in 2018. Most common were not having or carrying a license, keeping too many fish and using too many lines. C’mon people!

Makes me think of that Grumpy Old Men quote, “The green hornet’s caught more fish than you’ve lied about, Gustafson!” Lol. Congrats St. Croix peeps!

No black-and-white photos and need a pic of the fish on a ruler. Can’t imagine anyone arguing with either of those….

Believe that’s their first NWT pro. If you haven’t seen those magical Lure Lock boxes, they go a little something like this. #Science

> …placed a proprietary gel into the bottom of the trays, which secures hooks, terminal tackle and lures…prevents them from jostling around during travel….

> …grew sales in all geographical [international] areas. Our position with major customers in North America is strong…double-digit sales growth….”

Okuma Spinning Reel Giveaway!!!

Did you blow it on Valentine’s Day? Well, it’s not too late to make it right…. Have a shot at winning $345-ish worth of Okuma spinning reels!!!

Includes 3 Avenger ABF Baitfeeder Series spinning reels that are PERFECT for set-lines or deadsticks. They let you disengage the spool so the fish can run — then just flip the switch and your normal drag is engaged. Still the smallest “Baitfeeding” system in the industry and the perfect size for ice fishing.

Also gotcha covered with 3 limited edition Ceymar Tiara Spinning Reels. Hard to find, and even harder to put down when you feel how light and smooth (7BB + 1RB) they are!!

Same deal: Takes 10 seconds to enter — can share the link you get for bonus entries. 1 lucky person will win it all — good luck!

Tip of the Day

One of those off-the-wall techniques most walleye guys refuse to try. Can drift, cast or vertically fish it, and it ALWAYS keeps your bait in the strike zone.

Loved the newest episode of The Next Bite where Gary Parsons and Jason Przekurat put the bassy technique to good use in northern WI:

Guys were using the 4″ PowerBait Maxscent Flatnose Minnow on a 1/0 Fusion19 Drop Shot Hook with an 8-lb FireLine Ultra 8 braided main line and 6′ leader of 8-lb TriLene 100% Fluoro to a 3/8-oz slab of tungsten. #Dialed

Meme of the Day

Lot of negativity floating ’round the interwebz lately…. #WatchYourOwnBobber

Today’s ‘Eye Candy

How grizzled is Lindner Media’s Mike Hehner?

Anyone else missin’ early-ice when the sled basically pulled itself?

Sign up another fish-head!

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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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