Target Walleye/Ice email

Tricked out UTVs, 15-lb walleye, Late fall panfish tips

PSA: If you’re wondering why there’s so many pics with Rapala baits in these emails, it’s because we GET so many reader shots sent in that have Rapala baits in ’em…attached to big fish!

Today’s Top 5

Custom UTV “toppers” for ice-heads.

Stumbled across a company on Facebook called Pro Fab Outdoors (thx for the heads up, Chanda!) that makes decked-out UTV “toppers” — straight up had me drooling:

Guys are still working on their website, but said you can check ’em out in person at the Fargo Ice Show happenin’ Dec 7-9. Have some other new designs droppin’ at the show too…hoping to check ’em out in person.

*Manitoba greenbacks not included:

Slush melons of the week!

The first NWT stop next year = the Mississippi River near Red Wing, MN on May 2-3…so now’s a good time to invest in BFish’N Tackle AuthentX Moxi stock, before river-rat Ryan King snatches it all up:

New PB (personal best) alert! Tyler Olson Lindy-rigged his way into this 29-incher! Selfie game strong:

Greg Jones (co-host of MidWest Outdoors TV) and friends got into ’em on the Rainy River, including a 23″ burbot-eater:

Surprised that fish ^ was able to find a burbot small enough to eat: Lake of the Woods (connected to the Rainy River) has kicked out 5 of the last 7 MN state record burbs (since 1980). Typically caught through the ice, but open-water burbs are a thing too…

This 14-lber [!] was Ron’s first fish of the day with Curt Quesnell’s NCOR Guide Service on Lake of the Woods earlier this week: #BonusBurb

J-Raps ain’t just for walleyes…

…panfish love ’em too. The smaller #3 and #5 Rapala Jigging Raps catch the snot outta pannies this time of year, right on though ice up. Check out the full Tony Roach write-up here LOADED with crappie info, but a few excerpts below:

> This time of year, panfish begin pulling away from weedlines and start making their way towards winter haunts. But first they spend time suspending on breaklines between the weedbeds and drop-offs into deeper water.

> As the weeds start to die off, you’ll find big, big schools of fish adjacent to weedlines. They’ll suspend 10′, 15′, 20′ down on those breaks…that’s really where Jigging Raps shine.

> I’ll drive around with my big motor to mark schools and figure out what depth they’re at before I even drop the trolling motor….

> I fish vertically right underneath my graph on my bow. Jigging Raps are so dense…show up really well on sonar, so you can drop it down just above a school and watch fish come up to the bait and strike — just like you do ice fishing.

Tony likes a braided main line with a 2′ fluoro leader attached using a small swivel to reduce line twist.

> You’re not ripping it aggressively…it’s more of a vertical-hover presentation. I might jig it to get them to come up, but then I’ll slow it down — just like ice fishing — where I barely raise that bait and allow those fish to come up and strike it.

> Fish a little bit higher in the water column…the fish at the top of the school seem to be more aggressive — especially when they’re bunched up in a big group. Don’t just drop it right in their face…try to slow the presentation down 2′ or 3′ before it gets to the fish, allowing them to come up to the bait.

Favorite clear-water colors: Natural patterns like “perch” and “chrome blue.”

Stained-water colors: “Orange tiger UV,” the “glow yellow perch,” and BIG crappies especially love them some “pink tiger UV!”

How the MEGA Tobin Lake 15-lber was caught.

Couple weeks back we shared TW fan Dale Kozak’s STOUT 15.37-lber [!] from day 1 of the Vanity Cup on Tobin Lake. The fish was safely released after being tagged by the SK Sportfish Research Group:

Fish was an impressive 31.5″ but how ’bout that girth?!

Crazy enough, Dale has stuck numerous 14s before finally joining the 15-lb club (#FishEnvy). Here’s the scoop straight from the horse’s Dale’s mouth:

> Live-bait rigging with a leech was the ticket all week long…usually is there. Caught multiple walleyes over 10 lbs all week running the same method. Working inside ledges in 19-23’….also had many large fish come from the channel itself.

> With temps hovering around freezing most the week, wind and a light current…the 7′ Fenwick World Class + Pflueger Patriarch XT combo is a great weapon…for maintaining feel with frozen fingers, while stiff enough to eliminate outside factors.

That setup ^ will only cost you ’bout a mortgage payment (lol), but hey…more than paid for itself in that tourney.

> Dale: 8-lb Trilene Sensation main line to a 3/16-oz sinker, 8-lb fluoro snell with a #6 Berkley Fusion19 Octopus Hook. Those little Fusion19 Hooks are amazing if you haven’t tried them! Razor sharp and extremely hard tips…points don’t ‘roll’ like others.

> All in all, I’m just blessed to have been the lucky angler fortunate enough to catch her. “Right place, right time” as they say. After years of fishing and numerous 14s (topping at 14.98) it feels great to be a part of the 15-lb club, and knowing she’s still swimming. Time to raise the bar now…do you know where a guy can get a 16?

C’mon man, a 16…? If I knew where a guy could catch a 10-lber right now I’d be there instead of writing this email lol. Congrats again, dude!

Q: Why did the nightcrawler cross the road?

A: Probably ‘cuz it was chasing you if it was this big:

Those are bass-head Clark Reehm’s size 11s next to that ‘crawler-opotamus…had hundreds of ’em covering his LA driveway. Thing would look like a dang wind turbine pulled on slow-death hook.

Only know one guy that’s not impressed:

How’d you like to fish that ‘crawler? Throw it on a 47/0 hook with a 6-lb bottom-bouncer and hold on!


1. 2019 Freshwater Fishing Hall of Famers.

Big congrats to all 11 fish-heads being inducted!

2. Are commercial fishin’ policies killing Lake Winnipeg?

The Manitoba Wildlife Federation thinks so:

> The Manitoba Wildlife Federation (MWF) says gross mismanagement by various provincial governments means the lake’s fish stocks — especially walleye and sauger — are nearing collapse.

I’m no fisheries expert, so can’t really talk. But do know whether it’s a down year, tougher bite, or not what it used to be…I’ll still be making the trip up:

3. ON: Man fined $2.5K for keeping too many walleyes.

4. MN: Current Upper Red Lake regs extended.

Gonna keep the 4-fish bag limit — with one allowed over 17″ — through the winter.

URL’s usually one of the first MN lakes to have “fishable” ice, and I heard the water temps have already dipped to the mid-30s….

5. New Freedom Tackle Hammered Minnow Spoon.

Has a quick-change clevis on the rear to swap out hooks or bead colors. Side-to-side wobble on the drop. Definitely gonna have to try one this winter. #Flashy

6. OH: Man convicted after catching fish by hand…

…and posting a picture on social media.

7. New smaller LiveTarget Golden Shiner rattlebaits.

Added a smaller 2″ hammer to the fam. Should be available before freeze up.

8. Jeremy Smith talks his dream boat (video).

The Lund 1875 Pro Guide w/ a 90-hp Merc. I have the older (2008) 1825-version and LOVE it — awesome multi-species rigs.

I’m still willing to admit there’s days (especially this time of year) that a windshield would be nice…guess that’s why I rock a Simms Challenger Jacket + Bibs rain or shine lol. #LoveTillerLife #ButI’mGettingSoft

Tip of the Day

You can cover WAY more ground in the boat than you can on ice — get ’em dialed in now and early-ice will be a breeze.

Tony Roach especially likes finding rock-to-sand transitions ‘cuz 1) they’re easy to pick out on the graph…not so much through the ice, and 2) baitfish and walleyes will load up on ’em in winter:

Quote of the Day

All you need now is a fillet knife and some hush puppies.

– What the Yo-Zuri crew said ’bout C-Bass Malo Fishing already putting his Yo-Zuri winnings (from one of our giveaways) to good use:

For sure making my stomach growl!

Btw real people do actually win our giveaways…can’t speak for other pages, but we’re not about that trickery….

Meme of the Day

Hang in there, ice-heads:

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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