In terms of the ice itself, the answer is yes, it will still be thick enough to support ice fishing traffic. In fact, 24 to 30 inches of solid ice still covers most of the lake. Access to the ice will be the question, most resorts and rental operators have already pulled their gear away from landings and roads are no longer being maintained.
The most recent reports from any resorts are almost 2 weeks old already, so until my next tour around the lake, firsthand information will be hard to come by.
The accompanying map with numbered descriptions identifies the access points around the lake. I’ve updated the Lake Winnie Ice Access Map with the most recent information available to date. I expect to fill in any gaps over the next few days. Please use the phone contacts to get up to the minute reports when needed.
High Banks Resort is closed for the season. Their lodge is locked up, their staff is on leave; their landing and roads are now only available to use at your own risk. If you do decide to use their landing, put the access fee in the drop box at the lodge.
The most recent internet update came from Karen Christianson on March 13, 2022. "Today we said goodbye to the ice road. Last day of plowing on the third river flowage for this ice season. The U.S. Forestry staff will close the gate on the road on March 21, 2022. See you in the spring."
Access from this landing is typically limited to waters within the Third River Flowage and following the north shore toward the “clay banks” near Farley Creek. Ice ridges frequently crop up from near Stony Point and run across the lake westward toward Mallard Point. The ridges, when they occur, will block travel onto the main lake.
Note: When the access does open to the public, there is a drop box provided for folks who are willing to make a free will donation. I'd suggest $12.00 which is at the low end of rates offered at most other resorts on the lake. >> Dixon Lake Resort 218-659-4612
#2 The Poacher's Landing at Bowen's Flats (Click Here For Image) is a user developed site which allows access to the lake's north side and is most commonly used by ice fishermen who want to fish along Bowen's Flats. This landing is usually suitable for snowmobiles and ATV's. At times, the access is good enough for pickup trucks too, but is rarely suitable for vehicles towing large shelters. As of Monday March 21, 2022, a few anglers were using ATVs at the access, but there was no evidence that anyone had attempted to drive. As the image reveals, driving a pickup off of that access would be tricky at best.
Second hand, unverified reports on Monday March 21, 2022 incicated that the Mississippi River channel had begun to open up.
When available, anglers towing larger ice fishing shelters may get on the lake by using the landing at nearby Tamarack Lodge. The road fee is $20.00 per day.
The Pines Road provides access mainly to the northeastern section of the lake, through Tamarack Bay. Typically, this area is best known for good Perch and Pike fishing. But there are occasional spurts of good Walleye action too, especially along the steep Mississippi River Channel breakline. >> Pines Resort & Campground 218-246-8546
Tamarack Lodge works in unison with The Pines Resort to maintain the plowed roads in Tamarack Bay. Whether you enter the lake though Tamarack Lodge or through The Pines Resort, you are essentially accessing the same road system.
Tamarack does however have their own, semi-private landing and the incline of their landing is less steep than the landing at The Pines. For anglers with wheel houses, this may provide a more desirable location for driving on. The road fee is $20.00 per day.
Tamarack Lodge is open during winter and provides lodging for ice anglers. Contact >> Tamarack Lodge 218-246-8515
Their lodge is locked up, their staff is on leave; their landing and roads are now only available to use at your own risk. If you do decide to use their landing, put the ice landing access fee in the drop box at the lodge.
Highbanks provides one of the lake's most convenient drive on locations. For Lodging and shelter rental >> Highbanks Resort 218-246-2560
#5 The Birches Public Landing, just south of High Banks also has a large crack on shore and as shown in the image, an off-shore ice ridge, along with plenty of nasty looking rough ice. I did see some tracks produced by an adventerous angler who wiggled along the shoreline, headed north and then presumably out onto the lake? It looked like a lot of work to me, and in my mind, the cracks and ice ridges will be prohibiting access at this ramp for some time, maybe for the entire season.
The public landing is popular because it allows access to the lake's east and north sides along with access to most of the lakes mid-section. It is most commonly used by ice fishermen who want to fish "the humps" and mid lake bars, but don't want to pay a private road fee. So, it's possible that somebody will attempt to make improvements and if they do, I'll post an update later.
Denny's typically has a very good network of plowed roads that provide coverage all over the south end, most of lakes mid-section, and along the southeast side of the lake.
Pickup trucks are $12.00 per day, wheel houses are $15.00 per day or $30.00 for a weekend pass. Denny’s Resort also provides shelter rentals including both day houses and sleeper rentals. >> Denny’s Resort, 218-665-2222
#7 Nodak Lodge ice access open for lodging guests only.
Access Fee's: Daily $12, Truck and wheelhouse Daily $20, Wheelhouse Weekend Pass $40.00."
Occasionally, based on local conditions, Nodak Lodge limits access to the public, allowing road use by guests and rental customers only. For clarification about the current situation, I texted Tyler and he replied; "We are always open to the public unless blizards, heavy snow or high winds force a shutdown." So, if the weather conditions are questionable, be sure to call first.
Nodak Lodge provides a system of plowed roads that provide access mainly to the south and southwest sides of the lake, along with access to some of the mid-lake bars and humps. When open, their daily road access fees are $12.00 for a single pickup truck, $15.00 for wheel houses and $25.00 for a full weekend pass. Nodak Lodge 218-665-2226
#8 Richard's Townsite Public Landing is accessible for ATVs and snowmobiles as of 3-21-2022. The access road, Richard's Drive Northeast #2074 was well travelled, rutted and wet, but presented no challenges.
The Richards Townsite public landing is most commonly used by ice fishermen who want to fish along the southwest shoreline and the lake's southwestern mid-section. This landing is usually only suitable for snowmobiles and ATVs, but this winter, should be good enough for pickup trucks as well, at least based on conditions at the time of this writing.
#9 Trapper's Landing. Two Resorts, Becker’s and McArdle’s cooperate to maintain a system of plowed roads that provide access from the public landing located on the west side of the lake. Accessed via Trappers Drive, NW #2235 just south of McArdle’s Resort, this is typiclly an excellent landing.
On March 19, 2022 Becker's Resort posted this; "Just heads up for those wanting to fish from trappers landing today. Large volume of water on road making travel difficult. Please be smart and safe."
This access is open to the public, but there will be a drop box provided for folks who are willing to make a free will donation. I'd suggest $12.00 which is the low end rate at most other resorts on the lake. >> Becker's Resort 218-665-2268 or McArdle's Resort 218-665-2212
Did miss something? I'm sure that I can count on you to let me know so I can make corrections. And as always, up-to-date field reports from anglers on the ice are always welcome. Let us know what you've seen on the lake and help your fellow anglers have a safe, fun ice fishing trip! >> Contact Jeff Sundin
We are bracing for a BUSY weekend at The Pines! Elsewhere around the lake, access via plowed roads is still a big question mark. But thanks to good ice conditions in Tamarack Bay, fluffy snow and good plow trucks, our roads are in great condition.
The ice is good, with 18 inches being the most common measurement. We are currently allowing all pickup trucks towing manageable size ice fishing shelters out of our ramp. For folks with larger wheelhouses, like big tandem axle models, the landing at Tamarack Lodge is also available and open. Anglers have been showing up steadily all day long, so expect to find robust traffic on the lake. But if history is any indication, fish should remain cooperative throughout the weekend.
Walleye anglers are doing their best work using ..." Read >> Lake Winnie Ice Fishing Update 12-31-2021