Target Walleye/Ice email

How to find new lakes, Beards catch more fish, Early-ice walleye spots

Today’s Top 5

Proof that beards catch the biggest fish.

Okay can’t find any hard statistics on it for some reason, but…well….

No way Shaun Hansen wasn’t gonna be the first up — rockin’ that built-in wind meter while icing jumbotrons on a Clam Caviar Drop Jig. #DueEast #BeardEnvy

This is unreal!! TW fan Eric Jaspersen iced a 67.50″ Lake of the Woods swimmin’ dino after a 45-min battle on 8-lb Sufix Ice Magic mono! Stuffed her with a 3/8-oz “red glow” PK Spoon on his 36″ JT Blackout short stick. Possible new line-class record — congrats dude!

Andrew Kraft is all beard-oiled up and out there Garmin Panoptixing thick-bodied slabs near Bemidji, MN. Found this one roaming off a weedline in 12′:

Would be a rather-impressive beard if you looked at it upside down (lol). Solid Lake of the Woods slaunch that chomped a “chartreuse scale” color Lindy Glow Spoon:

It’s a tough job, but someone’s gotta do it:

How to find (big) fish on NEW lakes.

Fishing the same lakes each time out can get a bit stale…plus you’ll probably never stick that new PB (personal best) if you’re pokin’ around the same community holes day after day! Gotta step outta your comfort zone — you game?

We tracked down a couple of ice-heads who love practicing karate in the garage hitting new lakes, and picked their brains on how/where to start.

Waaaay too much info to post it all here — I’ll give you one snippet below — otherwise click the pic to read the full write-up:

If you fish in MN: LakeFinder is probably one of the biggest not-so-secret secrets of diehard ice-heads. Can search most any lake in the state (by name, or searching the map on the mobile version) and it’ll kick out tasty info like:

1. Whether there’s a public access or not, and where it’s at.
2. Fish stocking info: when, what and how many.
3. Water clarity, quality and levels.
4. And my personal favorite…the DNR’s trap/net data.

That trap/net data (under the “Fisheries Lake Surveys” tab) breaks down the weight and length of all fish sampled by the DNR. It’s a KILLER tool for finding lakes with above-average size fish…right from your couch [zipped-mouth emoji].

Read the full write-up here on

This has to be the meanest-lookin’ walleye ever?!

Marc Tremblay probably should’ve just let this one keep that “midnight” color Yo-Zuri Crystal Minnow Walleye Deep Diver. #Yikes

Btw – did you know Yo-Zuri’s rattlebait game was this strong?

Those 4 different models all have a unique sound and action — including the new-ish Real Series 3DR Vibe (bottom right) with an “internal 3D prism” that’s supposed to be killer in super-clear water.

Marc’s been putting the 3DB Vibe (top right) to good use this season already:

“There’s a big difference between hunting an animal humanely, and leaving one to suffer and die on the ice.”

What Josh Davis said about going deer hunting fishing on Greeley Lake, PA where he helped get a stranded buck off the ice. Always wondered how they went about it. #Catchin’Deers

For those of you that didn’t like the warm fuzzy feeling that vid gave ya, here’s a few other critters that weren’t as lucky….

You see these new spear-hole markers?? Can also get ’em in a velvet version earlier in the season:

What does the fox say? Apparently not much:

Anton and Alex Babich stumbled across this bass-eating pike in Indiana:

TW fan Brent Meyers found this hardwater honker while ice fishing on Lake Diefenbaker, SK. Would have to say that throwing up the “goose egg” now sounds better than getting “skunked” on the ice:

Yetti spotting!

There I was, minding my own business, when this guy came outta nowhere:

Okay, I was sorta the one that rushed him…. Had the chance to take the fam over to where Yetti Fish Houses are born in Brandon, MN and get a tour from the crew. Was crazy cool to see all of the steps involved in making one of the lightest and most durable “shacks” possible:

Let’s just say I wasn’t the only one drooling over (and on!) ’em:

Lol that’s my 4-month-old daughter Maisie, who’s all about that #YettiLife too.

Seriously can’t say enough good things about the people behind the company and the quality of the “shacks” they kick out. I’ve been in a ton of different wheelhouses and these just feel different in a reeeeally good way.

Know when something is Brad Hawthorne approved, you’re good to go — guy pushes his gear to the limits every day. Found out he put nearly 7,000 miles [!] on his Yetti Fish House last year with no issues…most people wouldn’t log that in a lifetime!

Few other quick things that stood out to me:

> All-aluminum construction is ridiculously lightweight…can literally shave off 1,000+ pounds and is virtually maintenance-free.

> The entire house provides a solid structure for the trailer base. The trailer frame is welded to the walls, the walls to the roof, etc.

> Yetti’s come standard with insulated floors, walls, and ceilings…all aluminum interior studs are covered with foam insulating tape to eliminate condensation.

> Home-quality windows = WAY less condensation, when others turn into ice-skating rinks.

> All of the interior tongue-and-groove wood, and hand-made cabinetry comes prefinished.

Gonna have to stop there, ‘cuz it would take 47 of these emails to list all the above-and-beyond that goes into each house. You can get your learn on here if you wanna find out more about their building process.


Back with the regular news section on Friday!

Tip of the Day

> “The best spots are usually located well out into the basin, as opposed to pike and panfish spots, which may be more bay-oriented and offer earlier safe ice.

> “Start fishing in the same areas you last contacted walleyes in late open water: prominent main-lake structures with steep drops to the basin.

> “Major points, deep humps — somewhere that deep water swings up tight against a sharp dropoff, within modest walking distance (a mile or so) of shore.

> “Don’t bother trying to locate little secret spots at first ice. Stick to big, prominent, obvious, classic spots that attract numbers of walleyes due to their sheer size. Then look for walleyes along concentration points along their edges.

> “Splash a little water from your minnow bucket atop the ice, rest your transducer atop the surface, and see if you can send a signal through to get a good depth reading of the bottom. Brush away light snow cover if necessary.

> “If you can’t get a good bottom reading through the ice, start drilling or chopping holes in a swiss-cheese pattern.

> “If there’s a little light snow cover atop the ice, reach down with your gloved finger and simply draw the depth in feet in the snow crust: 23, 18, 21, 37 — hey, there’s the dropoff. Now drill more adjacent holes to establish the contour, and prepare for action.”

Lot more info in the full Dave Csanda write-up here.

Meme of the Day

You don’t even wanna know how long I’ve been uncontrollably laughing — by myself — at this picture….

Today’s ‘Eye Candy

Couldn’t quite sneak this one in with the rest of the beards up top…but the first time I’ve seen Tanner Cherney growing out his neck gaiter — atta boy!

Tanner snuck out for a solo Devils Lake, ND gravel lizard mission and thwacked his new PB slush melon. She went head over heels snout over fins for a Northland Buck-Shot Spoon worked on a 20′ inside turn:

Digging all the room in that Clam Legend XL Thermal shack. Found out it was actually designed based off Dave Genz’s original Fish Trap concept. #Stout

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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