Target Walleye/Ice email

What to do if you fall in, 16-lb walleye caught, Bigguns from the bank now

Today’s Top 4

What to do if you break through the ice.

We’ve gotta talk about it, ‘cuz this video could for sure help save a life…maybe yours. Mad props to Capt. Adam Walton for taking one three for the team and showing everyone how it’s done:

Word is Adam watched Bill Dance bloopers for 4 days straight after that:

Missouri River 16-lber caught!

Not sure what I enjoyed more: Seeing the pics of this massive 16.22-lb belly-dragger, or reading Ron Boggs’ snippets on how it went down…SOLO!

We’ll start with a pic first case the words “16-lber” somehow weren’t attention-grabby enough to slow your scroll:

BOOM baby!!! How ridiculous is that?

I’m no lip reader, but pretty sure Ron is saying “thhhhiiiiiccccckkkkkk!” Scoop straight from the horse’s Ron’s mouth:

> I’ve been fishing a series of three Missouri River reservoirs near my home — Holter, Hauser and Canyon Ferry. As a fairly nocturnal angler I’m guessing I spend more nights afloat than most sane anglers? 18 nights out thus far this fall.

> I was fishing alone as usual…. Because this fish was so close to the state record of 17.75 lbs — and because one of my scales was bouncing over 17 lbs — I called my colleague, Jake Monroe, to bring additional scales…certified if possible. He dropped his late-evening plate of spaghetti and made the hour drive….

> We calibrated scale-to-scale on 5 different scales with 3 of them weighing about the same, and lighter than 2 scales that we presumed to be inaccurate. You can see it was either 16.22 or 16.33 with the cold display….


> I’ve since acquired a lip-gripping digital scale (thanks Marco Miller) that I calibrated with the oversized certified scale I now have ready at home…as if I’ll catch a bigger one before ice up…optimism is required for night fishing in the cold!

> …when that fish came over the gunnel and I set her on the floor it was fairly obvious this was a special fish. She holds 20″ of girth for nearly half her short little 30.5″ body. The bloated shape is almost grotesque — COOL!

> When I saw her there on the deck it was one of those rare times that a calm came over me and I just stood there and stared at her for a minute…by myself in the dark with this massive girl sitting calmly beside me.

Case you’re curious…here’s what it looks like when a 16+ hits the deck [shocked emoji]:

Get this:

> After calling Jake to bring accurate scales I went for another pass in the same stretch and popped an 11.5-lber before he arrived. Nice night!

Lol “nice night” is right — BIG congrats man!

You can expect to see lots more from Ron Boggs in Target Walleye soon-ish….

You think zebra mussels are bad…

…look at the size [!] of these Chinese pond mussels found right here in the US. #DinnerPlates

Accordin’ to this write-up:

> Years ago, tiny “hitchhikers” [larvae of Chinese pond mussels] went unnoticed in a tank of live carp shipped from China to a fish farm here.

> …the larvae had established themselves in the muddy bottoms of ponds at [a NJ] fish farm, which supplied carp to Asian restaurants in New York City.

Believe they’ve since wiped ’em out of the pond…though scary how easily something like that could spread. But hey, maybe they eat zebra mussels? Lol.

Ever heard someone say…

…they’re gonna be eating “tag soup” at the end of the hunting season? Meaning they weren’t able to catch any deers…. Think I found the fishing-version of that posted by Greg Ricer over on the Facebooks:

Yup, I’m out:

That pic give anyone else flashbacks to their college days?


1. CO does have a walleye stocking program.

Case you didn’t know. CPW stocked 47 million walleye fry across the state in 2019, the most of any species.

They launched a walleye study “to assess population dynamics at Lake Pueblo, Chatfield and Cherry Creek” where they collected 126 million walleye eggs last spring for their hatcheries.

2. Garmin wins DAME Design Award…

…for their new Force Trolling Motor. Same unit that won Best Boating Accessory at ICAST 2019 and overall Best of Show:

Few details from Garmin’s website:

> Force is 30% more powerful than the leading motor in the market today.

> Its unique brushless motor operates with almost undetectable sonar noise interference….

> Includes built-in Garmin CHIRP traditional and UHD ClearVü and SideVü scanning sonars.

> …can also be controlled via the wireless foot pedal that feels and steers just like a cable-steered pedal, or from the wireless remote….

Recent fish survey showed adult walleyes averaging 22.5″ and also had 27 youngsters in the nets after the lake went under extensive renovation, including:

> …draining the reservoir, excavating deeper areas, removing debris from the 2018 tornado, adding structural fish habitat, and adding fishing docks, a pier, swimming beaches and more.

4. Tungsten ‘Ratfinkees’ are now a thing, sorta.

If you’ve ever fished panfish through the ice, you’ve probably seen the Custom Jigs & Spins Ratfinkee — I’d be willing to bet it’s accounted for putting a million fish topside over the last 30-ish years. Seriously.

CJ&S just dropped a new tungsten jig — molded after the Ratfinkee — called the Wölfinkee (pronounced “wolf-finkee”).

It’s designed to fish deeper, get down quicker and keep your line tighter. Has a “precision balanced tungsten ball head with a colorful plastic body molded over a gold plated Mustad hook.” #PanfishCandies

5. MI: How the DNR makes homegrown walleye.

This quote made me chuckle:

> All you really have to do is keep track of the plankton and harvest the fish before the system crashes.

Sounds easy enough.

6. MI: Report any tagged walleyes you catch.

Part of a long-term research project to monitor survival, harvest rates and walleye movement.

7. Pure Fishing/Berkley has new North American prez.

Dave Bulthuis, who was with Costa for 16-ish years.

8. New VMC Tungsten Bullfly Jig’s lookin’ like a snack.

My 3 fave colors from left-to-right: Metallic rainbow, red and gold:

What makes ’em different:

> …has a longer and bulkier body with goose-feather tail and wings. It’s tungsten build allows for a smaller presentation…drops fast.

> …VMC Power Gap hook offers a 5% wider gap than traditional jig hooks for a higher-efficiency hooking rate. Additionally, a 90-deg hook eye ensures the optimal horizontal position and maintains the perfect strike angle.

I just tied one on last night…hoping to give her a go soon-ish.

9. MT: FWC meeting happenin’ Dec 5 in Helena.

To finalize upper Missouri River and Holter Rez reg changes, and go over about a zillion other proposals. Will also be streaming the meeting’s audio on their website case you’d rather listen in your sweatpants.

10. PA: 101-acre Green Lick Lake getting stocked with walleyes.


$250 ACME Tackle giveaway!

Have a shot at winning this $250 spread of ice-fishing goodness from ACME Tackle, including their Hammered Tungsten Ice Jigs that give off a little extra flash — in different directions — mimicking batifish scales:

Takes 10 seconds to enter by clicking the pic below and can share the link you get for bonus entries. Good luck!! Highlights

Tip of the Day

Ross Robertson: Wading for night walleyes.

There’s loads of awesome info in Ross’s full MeatEater write-up here, few quick excerpts below. Hold that thought…

This write-up is too dang good NOT to read the whole thing. Either click here or on the pic below to check it out:

Quote of the Day

“It’s like looking at the Model T of the fishing industry.”

– That’s MN legend Ray Gildow talking about Gary “Mr. Walleye” Roach’s first real fishing boat, a Shell Lake 315 Lund Tri-Hull he bought new for $300 back in 1970!

The boat has since been restored, and Gary donated it to the MN Fishing Museum and Hall of Fame in Little Falls. For sure worth checking out if you’re in the area.

Today’s ‘Eye Candy

Will Pappenfus (@walleyewillfishing) Fu Manchu’d this northern MN specklebelly — that barely fit up a 6″ hole! — with a Northland Tungsten UV Fire-Ball Jig. Said he’s been finding slabs stacked in 23′ on the edge of a basin adjacent to the weedline. #Dialed

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Who is Target Walleye
Target Walleye — 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 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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