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image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin December 30, 2020 "Upper Red; The Remoter The Better"

image links to upper red lake fishing report As of December 30, 2020, resorts and rental operators are allowing ALL BUT THE LARGEST vehicles access to the lake on their plowed roads. Take Mort's Dock for example, they request that you leave your big diesel truck on shore, otherwise you can drive anything you want.

That means that the crowds are large, and the rental operators are hustling to keep their units in fresh territory. If you were to poll 100 anglers about the fishing action on Red Lake right now, 30 of them would say that the action is great. Another 30 would report that the fishing completely stinks and the remaining 40 would shrug their shoulders and say that it is "so-so". This is fairly typical of Red Lake, once the hot rush of early ice passes, catching fish consistently requires creativity.

Most anglers fishing the lake advise getting out and away from the crowds for best fishing action. That advice is easy to give out, but if your travel is limited by the constraints of large wheelhouses and big pickup trucks, not so easy to follow. Most folks who depend on finding a parking spot for their wheelhouse are also hip to the idea that there's a tradeoff between fishing in comfort and fishing "away from the crowd".

From my perspective, you could have both, if you want to. The ultimate ice fishing trip on large lakes like Upper Red, I think, is to use a sleeper house as headquarters and snowmobile back and forth to the better, more remote fishing areas. Except for those who have the cash to shell out for a Sno Bear, there is no way to be more efficient than using snowmobile and pull behind ice shelter. This is as close as you can get to duplicating the efficiency of fishing from a boat.

A few years back, we filmed some video on Red Lake using the system and it was great. Having the rental sleeper that was put in place by a seasoned pro, meant that we could fish that crucial, first light bite before venturing out. As soon as the action faded, we jumped on the snow machines and fished subtle structures out and away from the crowds.

With access to Canadian waters still closed, this might be a good winter for all of us snowmobilers to take a second look at Upper Red. The fish, in my opinion, run nicer in size than they do in a lot of other places, so even a moderately good fishing day results in catching enough fish for a good feast.

If you’re thinking about Red for this weekend, the better reports are coming from anglers targeting water depths of 10 to 11 feet. Fishing with jigging spoons on one rod and dead sticking with blade baits or plain red hooks on a 2nd rod helps trigger a few extra fish when they’re in a neutral mood. Pink, red and gold are always good colors on Red Lake. Lately, I’ve enjoyed the Pink Glow Spoons a lot, but the old reliable Red-Glow Rattl’n’ Flyer Spoon is always a good choice on Red too.

If you can still find some, Foo Flyers will trigger those neutral fish really well too. A super effective lure, the Foo Flyer was under-rated by the masses and eventually discontinued. I hung on to as many as I could find and still use them when I see fish on my graph that won’t strike many of the more aggressive jigging lures.

I do my best to stay on top of reports from Upper Red, but resorters and rental operators up there are extremely busy, and it can be tough to contact them on short notice. I know that a lot of folks believe that facebook posts get to everybody, but many of them don’t.

What I’m saying is that I can use all the help I can get. If you’ve been fishing on Upper Red Lake, or any other lake for that matter, your reports are always welcome.

You do not need to share your secrets and you don’t have to write a book either. Be as protective as you like, sometimes all it takes is a few words about ice conditions, fishing trends or lures that worked well for you. Help your fellow anglers and they will eventually help you, so drop us a line and share a few words. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

image links to Upper Red Lake, Northwoods Fish Houses Ice Report December 3, 2020

image links to upper red lake fishing update Shane Youngbauer at Northwoods Fish Houses says, “On Upper Red Lake, once you get past the first crack, you will catch as many walleyes as you can!"

There are now 5 to 7 inches of ice on the shore side of the crack. The crack itself has re-frozen, and the “healed” portion of the ice is now about 3 inches thick.

So, for this weekend, anglers using the Access at Mort’s Resort will be allowed to use ATVs to travel as far as that first crack by following along their staked trails.

Stop your ATV at the crack, about ¼ mile out from shore and you’ll be over roughly 8 feet of water. Much of the territory beyond the crack over the main lake side has been un-explored, so from there out, foot traffic only will be allowed this weekend.

Most ice anglers know that keeping a distance from the crowds is an advantage on Upper Red, so that means there will be significant peer pressure to cover fresh territory.

Youngbauer; “This weekend is going to be nuts out there and we know that space is important. But don’t forget, the ice is never safe once you venture away from our stakes! Have fun, but play it safe in un-fished territory." — Northwoods Fish Houses, Shane and Samantha Youngbauer 218-308-0766

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin November 25, 2020 "Upper Red Lake Ice Updates"

image links to red lake fishing report On Upper Red Lake, the cat is out of the bag. A few anglers began showing up to test their skills on Sunday, a few more showed up on Monday and by Tuesday, there were enough people around to call it a crowd.

As usual, most folks are catching some fish and reports from the early crowd are fueling curiosity. By the weekend, we should expect to see a lot of people moving around on the shoreline, but maybe not freely.

As shown in the satellite image (enlarge image), there’s a crack running along the shoreline. The crack extends most of the way from the reservation line on the south end, up to the northeast corner, near Beacon Harbor. In some areas, the open water covers a swath that is 100 to 200 yards wide and ice on either side of it is still moving.

The NOAA weather forecast, if accurate, appears to favor good conditions for making more ice before the weekend. Mild winds from the south and west should minimize churning and cracking along the break. By Sunday, west winds up to 25 MPH are in the forecast and if the cracks haven’t healed sufficiently to withstand that force, that could be a problem.

After putting up with the slushy conditions that side-lined so many anglers last winter, I would have been more than willing to wait an extra week for good ice. But now that the lake is proclaiming herself ready for the ice season, let’s just hope and pray that we don’t get too much snow, too fast.

I know that a lot of folks will be rushing to get up there this weekend, there always is. I am not a party pooper and not a lecturer either. But I would be remiss in my duties if I don’t remind you to be cautious. My wife, the safety planner, would likely advise; “exercise extreme caution!”

Make sure you know where you are and know where you’re going and be mindful of changing conditions. If it freezes too fast, that crack will get worse, if it warms up too fast, then the crack will still get worse and if the wind blows too hard; you get it.

There will be updates coming in from Red Lake throughout the day today and I’ll be sure to add them as they become available. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

image links to Upper Red Lake, Northwoods Fish Houses Ice Report November 24, 2020

"We are at 4-5 inches of ice around the south and east side of upper red lake. Southwest boondocks still had a picture of open water. We will be fishing Thanksgiving weekend, but I cannot guess which resort(s) will open.

Conditions can change daily until the lake is completely locked up from all directions; north to south and west to east. So please everyone, be patient, during the early ice period, we cannot stress this enough!   

Starting next weekend, Mort’s on upper red will be open to walking only and they will have live bait as well as pizzas to go available as well! Northwoods Fish Houses have a limited number of “on shore rentals” left as well. 

We’ll have a better review next week. Stay tuned!" — Northwoods Fish Houses, Shane and Samantha Youngbauer 218-308-0766

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin November 24, 2020 "Perusing the Peruse-Able For Stocking Stuffer Ideas"

image links to Lurenet Black Friday Sale Most of the men and women in my family love fishing. Naturally, that means that they love fishing gear too, so Whenever somebody mentions picking up stocking stuffers for Christmas, I start checking around for special sales on fishing tackle.

A couple of days ago, an email from Lurenet got my attention. It contained an announcement about a big flash sale on fishing lures and a lot of the lures they listed, are the same ones I use every day for both open water and ice fishing.

When they use the term “Flash Sales”, they mean it. Both the lures that are on sale and the times at which they're offered are moving targets. So you have to check in every day to see which ones they running at the moment. The deals are running at random times and usually last only if the supplies do.

So whether you have anglers on your Christmas list or just want a great deal on lures for your own tackle trays, save some money and have some fun checking out >> Lurenet's Black Friday Flash Sales. I'm on their website, checking for bargains myself, right now. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

Rewind Video From Last November "Early Ice Walleyes On Upper Red Lake 2019"

image links to videoOne year ago, there weren't a lot of places that anglers could get to on Upper Red Lake either. But for those who were willing to hoof it across the ice, there were some areas where walleyes were within reach.

I remembered this morning that Nate Altendorf was up there on early ice and that he provided a great video report about both the ice conditions and fishing action on the big lake.

Altendorf; "With stained water and limited mobility, I can't get to the fish. I have to use a presentation that brings the walleyes to me and that's why I ..."

Rewind 2019 Video and Learn More >> Early Ice Walleye On Upper Red Lake November 20, 2019

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin November 21, 2020 "Ready For A Walk On Upper Red Lake?"

Most everyone knows about spring fever, a well-known condition commonly identified with folks who are bursting at the seams to get outside after being cooped up during winter.

“Winter Fever”, my term, does not exist, at least it’s not recognized by any dictionary or electronic resource. But if you ask me, it is real and one of the most easily recognizable symptoms is the perennial clamor among a certain segment of our population to be the first angler to catch a walleye through the ice on Upper Red Lake.

The fever is kicking in right now, as evidenced by questions popping up everywhere, including my email in-box, about the ice conditions on Upper Red.

You’ll be happy to know that relief is in sight, the giant lake has already had ice cover and lost it a couple of times. Most recently, it was the string of warm days destroyed it’s ice sheet and before that, it was strong winds that blew Red’s first ice apart.

Colder overnight lows combined with calmer conditions and super-cold-water temperatures have allowed the lake to form yet another sheet of early ice. There are reports, in some areas, of ice thicknesses ranging from 4 to 5 inches. Elsewhere, resorters and rental operators are more conservative about estimating ice thickness, among them, 2 to 3 inches is a much more common guess.

If you’re chomping at the bit to cure a case of winter fever, then relief isn’t far away. That said, I would not expect to find safe ice for walking on Upper Red this weekend. But, if the weather forecast holds true, then next weekend is definitely a strong possibility; for walking. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

image links to Upper Red Lake, Northwoods Fish Houses Ice Report November 24, 2020

"We are at 4-5 inches of ice around the south and east side of upper red lake. Southwest boondocks still had a picture of open water.
We will be fishing Thanksgiving weekend, but I cannot guess which resort(s) will open.

Conditions can change daily until the lake is completely locked up from all directions; north to south and west to east. So please everyone, be patient, during the early ice period, we cannot stress this enough!   

Starting next weekend, Mort’s on upper red will be open to walking only and they will have live bait as well as pizzas to go available as well! Northwoods Fish Houses have a limited number of “on shore rentals” left as well. 

We’ll have a better review next week. Stay tuned!" — Northwoods Fish Houses, Shane and Samantha Youngbauer 218-308-0766

image links to wired2fish Wired2Fish November 21, 2020 "Bubba Lithium Ion Cordless Electric Fillet Knife Review" Jason Sealock

image links to fishing glove giveaway "November for me isn't about beards. It's about crappie. It's the month I like to catch crappie for the family. We eat quite a bit of baked fish, so I like to chase those coldwater crappies that are easy to catch with a jig if you know where to look. More about that here. But then comes the cleaning part. I'm pretty adept with an electric fillet knife. But I've been wanting a good cordless one for a while.

BUBBA sent me their newest Lithium ION Cordless Electric Fillet Knife a few months ago and it has been getting a workout since early October. I've cleaned a pile of crappie, yellow bass, white bass, bluegill and even a sauger.

I think a lot of folks serious about cleaning a lot of fish over the course of the year will want to ..." Learn More >> Bubba Lithium Ion Cordless Electric Fillet Knife Review

image links to mn dnr news release News Release: Upper Red Lake Walleye Fishing Regulations Change For Winter 2020-2021

"Anglers fishing during the winter season on Upper Red Lake in northern Minnesota will have a three-walleye bag limit, with only one walleye longer than 17 inches allowed.

Heavy winter fishing over the last four years necessitated more restrictive regulations. Winter angling on Upper Red Lake averaged 1.6 million angler hours with a harvest of 130,000 pounds annually over this period. The new regulations, which become effective Sunday, Nov. 1, lower the possession limit from the four-walleye limits in place during the 2020 open water season and the 2019-2020 winter season.

“Anglers should remember to bring a good measuring device along with them on their trip to Upper Red Lake,” said Andy Thompson, Bemidji area fisheries supervisor with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. “Many walleye will measure just above, and just under, the 17-inch size restriction.”

The Red Lake Nation and the Minnesota DNR manage walleye harvest on Red Lake under a joint harvest plan that the Red Lakes Fisheries Technical Committee revised in 2015.

The DNR will determine next year’s open water harvest regulations after the winter fishing season. An Upper Red Lake Citizen Advisory Committee reviews walleye harvest totals and regulation options and provides recommendations for regulations for the state waters of Upper Red Lake.

Upper Red Lake fishing regulations are available at"

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report July 13, 2020 "Upper Red Lake Fishing Reports"

image of upper red lake map “Everybody that’s returned to the dock have come in with their walleyes.” So said one of the camping guests at Roger’s Resort on Upper Red Lake on Sunday. His account of the fishing success on the giant lake may have been accurate, but not necessarily complete.

By all other accounts, including reports from some of the very best fishermen that I know, the fishing on Red Lake was slow, way slower than usual compared to recent years. Most everybody who was there this weekend did catch some fish, but reports of modest catches, i.e. 3 to 5 fish per boat were the rule and not the exception.

Still, I don’t think that the camper was passing along bad information, I believe that he really did see lots of other guests at the campground bring in their fish. I think the difference between his report and others boiled down to timing. Folks who were camping at Roger’s were able to get an early morning start, but anglers who drove up on Sunday morning didn’t hit the water until 9:00 AM, maybe even later.

By the time travelers ever reached the lake, they had just enough time to get in on the tail end of “the morning bite.” By then, campground residents already had a couple of hours head start to gather their 4 fish limits. When they returned to the dock, they really did have their fish.

Fishing the crepuscular periods is usually not as important to summer anglers on Red as they are to those fishing clear water lakes. But anybody who ice fishes there during the winter knows how important it can be to catch the early morning, late afternoon bite. Apparently, that situation is in play up there right now as well.

The largest crowds are gathered around the lakes limited mid-lake structures. There were 25 boats fishing circles around center bar on Sunday morning. Some of the smaller rock humps located along the south and east shorelines have fish on them too and there are still small groups of anglers focused on fishing shoreline breaks.

Most folks are using spinners tipped with live bait, some are trolling crankbaits, and a few are still fishing with jig and minnow combinations. Depths vary from structure to structure but focus on water depths of 10 to 12 feet and you’ll see more fish on your electronics than you will in shallower water.

In the past, I’ve recommended fishing Upper Red for mid-summer anglers who needed to beat the heat on bright calm days. The recommendation still holds, but this season, I better add the caveat of getting an early morning start, if you can’t do that, then plan of fishing the evening instead. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

image links to wired2fish Wired2Fish July 13, 2020 Deep-Diving Crankbaits for Bass: How to Dissect Key Spots

image links to fishing article "Peak summertime water temps drive baitfish and bass to hard bottom deep water haunts on lakes, rivers, and reservoirs. Wired2Fish's Ryan DeChaine demonstrates how to methodically fish productive offshore structures with big deep-diving crankbaits, which consistently trigger the biggest and most aggressive bass in any given body of water.

DeChaine's system starts with having a detailed picture of the structure he's fishing. He uses side-imaging and mapping to find and waypoint offshore hard patches, then employs 360 Imaging for making methodical casts until he's thoroughly fished the structure.

The key to getting bit is making bottom contact with the crankbait -- DeChaine mixes in ultra deep-diving crankbaits to ensure consistent bottom contact throughout the cast. Realistic finishes are a plus in clear water. Lastly, he details his rod, reel, and line set up to make long casts into the wind, maintain adequate line pick, and ... " View Video and Learn More >> Deep-Diving Crankbaits for Bass: How to Dissect Key Spots

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Helping your fellow fishermen and women stay abreast of fishing conditions in your area is good for everybody and it's easier than you think!

You don't have to write a book, you don't have to share your secret fishing spots and you don't even have to mention your lake. But even a few words about general trends, seasonal patterns and local weather conditions can really help.

Fishing Reports Minnesota, the Facebook counterpart to this page is open to the public, so you can post your own fishing update or just share a photo of a nice catch. Be like me, become a duly deputized "Cub Reporter", it's good for fishing! Contact Us

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report June 4, 2020 "Red Lake Report"

Over the years, folks have mentioned that they notice me dropping little clues about lakes where I fish and spots within them. Some like to read between the lines or examine the photos for hints about where to go.

Well, if you looked at the accompanying photo of Keith and Diane Eberhardt and didn’t figure out where we were yesterday, call me; I will confess to you that we were on Upper Red Lake. I was there the day before too with my fiends Marty and Janet Christensen, but we didn’t take many photos because we were too busy reeling in fish.

Surface water temperatures touched 70 degrees during the afternoon, but for most of the day registered between 66 and 68 degrees.

Sheepshead are in full-scale spawning mode and were present in large numbers both days, but there were still lots of walleyes on the shoreline as well. On Tuesday, the drum were most active in the morning and walleye action intensified during the afternoon. Wednesday, it was the complete opposite, first we bagged our walleyes and then we had fun with the drum.

Key depths ranged between 4 and 7 feet deep, but there were a few fish deeper too, 9 feet was a magic number in a couple of places.

Jig and minnow were still the most reliable presentation, but we caught some fish trolling spinners too. A couple of boats were trolling crankbaits and I observed several fish caught by them as well. In other words, I think you can go there and use your favorite presentation with the expectation of catching fish.

Like I said, there will be a lot of sheepsheads in the mix, but the walleyes are still on the shoreline in good numbers. The walleyes will show up eventually, even if the drum seem to dominate at times. Besides, weeding through a bunch of hard fighting fish can be really fun.

The only caveat about planning a trip to Red is to watch for a period of calm days. The windy start to our week spoiled the fun up there for a little while. When it calmed down, the recovery began and as usual, the more settled the lake became, the better the fishing action was. If the weather forecast calls for calm seas, head that way, but if it will be breezy, find smaller water and visit Red Lake later. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report May 27, 2020 "Upper Red Lake Report"

Upper Red Lake has gone through quite a transformation in the week that passed since my last visit. Surface water temperatures ranged between 64 and 66 degrees on Tuesday, about 12 degrees warmer since then.

Freshwater Drum, AKA Sheepshead, were thick along the south shoreline. In fact, on Tuesday we caught one drum after another without as much as a sniff from any walleye. That doesn’t mean that the walleyes were gone from the shoreline, but the population of drum in that area was overwhelming. I did not want to wait around, feeding the sheepshead all our bait while I searched for a random pack of walleyes.

A move away from the shoreline and onto the flat improved our outlook. In about 8 feet of water, there was a small rise, a 20 to 30-yard stretch of gravel and mixed light rocks that topped out at 6 feet deep. On it, we found a decent school of Walleyes milling around along the soft breakline edges. That single school of fish kept up busy for a couple of hours, in fact I think we caught about 20 fish of varying sizes and managed to add 10 “keeper size” fish to our livewell before moving away from it.

Another stretch of rocks, this one larger than the first, also had a school of fish on it. This time there we enough fish to hold our attention for another couple of ours. The plan was to catch and release fish until we were ready to capture our final keeper and then go home. The way it turned out, the deciding factor in deciding when to leave would be when we ran out of bait. When we were down to our last few minnows, we bagged fish #12, giving us a 3 person limit and wrapped up the day.

There was some banter about which jigs and which colors to fish with. Obviously, I am always going to tell you to use the one I designed, the Lindy Live Bait Jig. I really like all of the "glow" colors and yesterday, the 1/8 ounce glow/perch version was very productive for I and Fritz.

Penny, on the other hand, did her best to convince me that she had a better option, a gold colored whatchamacallit. She caught the first few fish and was on the road toward proving her point when a little northern came along and bit off her lure. That gave me the chance to switch her over to one of my jigs, which she tolerated, providing that the color I tied on for her was GOLD.

Gold is her color and no matter how you look at it, that probably won't change. Luckily, the Live Bait Jig does come in gold, so I was able to accomodate her request and she caught fish; we were all happy. If you're interested in picking up some Lindy Live Bait Jigs, here is a reliable source >> Purchase Lindy Live Bait Jigs on Lurenet

There was more than one reliable presentation for us. We caught quite a few of our fish back-trolling and once I pinned down the best location, I turned on the “spot-lock” and we caught some more fish pitching and retrieving jigs from a fixed position. After the breeze picked up, we switched to drifting, using the bow mount to hold position along the breakline; that worked well too.

Trolling crankbaits worked well for friends who fished on Red Lake over the holiday weekend. So that presentation would be an option for those who prefer that style of fishing.

I’ve always thought that whenever the sheepshead move into the shallows on Upper Red, it gives the signal that walleyes would soon be moving out. If yesterday’s trip is an indicator, then that may well be happening right now.

Today’s weather forecast looks like the best one for fishing on Red Lake that I’ll see this week. So, I am going back up to start a 3-day stint with Ken Seufert. Ken likes to explore and so do I, so we might try some offbeat locations and experiment more with presentation today and tomorrow, I will note the note-able." fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report May 20, 2020 "Upper Red Lake - Reliable Place To Gather Walleye Dinner"

image of shiner minnows in tank. Upper Red Lake shiners, according to my friend, professional shiner trapper, Chad Benson, began their full-scale spawning migration the day before yesterday, May 18, 2020. The accompanying photo of his shiner haul that afternoon was all it took to get me fired up about heading there for my first offical workday of the 2020 fishing season.

I hooked up with my crew at the Winnie Trading Post at 8:00, picked up some bait and they followed me to the landing at Washkish. By the time we arrived, about 9:15 AM, the parking lots on both sides of the bridge over the Tamarack River were filled. There was still room in the overload lot, the sand lot adjacent to the main landing, but that was filling too.

What we learned on the lake was that even if the bite wasn’t “on fire”, Upper Red Lake was at the very least, a reliable place to gather walleyes for a fish meal.

Surface water temperature in the Tamarack River was 58 degrees and by the time we floated into the main lake, decreased to 54 degrees. For the rest of the day, my Humminbird registered temperatures between 53 and 56 degrees. Any warm water temperatures were diluted by being blown out to sea by strong southeast winds.

The same winds encouraged us not to stray far from the southeast corner of the lake and most folks did the same thing. That meant finding places to fish “in private” wasn’t easy. There were boats strung out all along the shoreline and as usual, concentrations of folks wherever and whenever anybody located a school of active fish. Still, there was room to move around, so it didn’t take too long to locate a workable stretch of water.

For me, the secret to finding early season fish on Red Lake is usually to figure out where there are schools of shiners heading toward the shallow sand. On Tuesday though, there were minnows everywhere, in fact, I saw bait on my graph all day long. That made it tricky to decide when to stop the boat, so instead of searching for a spot-on-a-spot, I just started trolling, knowing that eventually I would stumble into a school of fish.

It took a little while, but within a reasonable time, we did encounter fish. Typical of early season fishing on Red, the bite was slower in the morning and better during the warm part of the day. We probably caught 10 fish before noon, had a flurry of fast action between noon and 2:00 PM. The lull in the action was probably only the result of fishing pressure and boat traffic because when I moved to fresh territory, the bite picked right back up again.

On a lot of days, locating fish and then anchoring the boat to fan cast a jig and minnow, or throw out live bait under a slip float is a great idea. On Tuesday though, I could never decide where I wanted to stop. The fish were more scattered than usual and I never felt like I had them pinned down.

That’s probably because the water is high on Red Lake right now, it’s at least a couple of feet higher than what I’ve been accustomed too. It’s likely that the high water is a contributing factor to the shiners being so scattered along the shoreline. Since the shiners are scattered, there’s no reason for walleyes to concentrate in any one spot over another. For me, that meant having a slower-but-steadier bite instead of an intense, localized one.

It should be noted too that for a long time, fish were located deeper than usual, 8 to 10 feet deep at the base of the breakline. Eventually they moved up, the breakline from 6 to 7 feet lit up during the afternoon. So don’t get too hung up on any one depth, move up and down occasionally, just to be sure that the fish didn’t shift position.

For me, there’s no reason not to fish with anything except a jig and minnow. It is by far my favorite presentation. A 1/8-ounce Lindy Live Bait Jig tipped with shiners until we established that fatheads worked just as effectively. There are certain lakes where having shiners is a big advantage, but Red Lake is not one of them, good size fatheads, rainbows or most any other minnow are all effective on this lake.

I'd heard from some folks that getting "keeper size" walleyes was tricky this year. There definitely are more large fish than usual, but I didn't find it super difficult to get keepers in the mix. That said; there are a lot of 16-7/8 inch walleyes, just below the 17 inch threshold. That’s important this season because we are only allowed one walleye over 17 inches and it would be easy to make a mistake.

So if you do head up there, just make sure all your ducks are in a row, DNR Enforcement is active on the lake and it is highly likely that you will be checked. Measure twice and be sure to pinch the tail to be sure that the CO can’t make it stretch to 17 inches, that would result in an uncomfortable situation.

It might take a little longer to fill your creel, but like I said, Upper Red is a reliable place to gather walleyes for a fish meal. Besides, who doesn't love catching a big walleye occasionally?

Most everybody appears to already know that Red Lake is good right now and traffic on the lake is brisk. But don't that scare you away, folks know what they’re doing these days and despite the robust crowd, loading and unloading boats went very smoothly. In fact, we were on the water just a few minutes after our pre-trip preparation was completed and getting off the lake was equally easy. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL