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image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report November 27, 2019 "Don’t Make Any Deadly Mistakes This Weekend"

image links to ice fishing report I know that there are folks who’d like to ice fish over thanksgiving weekend, so on Tuesday; I toured the area for a firsthand look at ice conditions. The drive was educational to say the least and revealed two, extremely differing scenarios.


Some of the lakes that I checked have solid ice ranging in thickness between 6 and 8 inches. These are shallow water lakes that have been frozen since the first major cold front that arrived a few weeks ago. Despite the recent period of warm, damp weather, the ice on those lakes was actually in really good condition yesterday.

Overnight temperatures have apparently been just cold enough to prevent the ice on those lakes from deteriorating. Auger holes drilled previously by anglers were all re-frozen and the ice in and around them was solid. I was able to walk freely without hearing any cracking or shifting of the ice and could easily have drilled my own holes and started fishing.

Lakes that have maximum depths of less than 30 feet are one key; I checked a 2000 acre lake that had the same ice thickness as another one that was only 200 acres. Lakes that fit into this category don’t have to be small, but they do have to be shallow.


There are still some lakes in the region that do not have any ice cover at all, they were wide open. In fact I saw more open water yesterday than I did on my last tour about a week ago. That signals me that the ice cover on every deep water las has most likely deteriorated.

Ice cover over deep water was sketchy to begin with, so for me, the assumption is that there probably are not any safe areas over deep water.


The snow storm that’s in today’s news has tracked primarily to the south and east of the Itasca region. Here in Grand Rapids, we have about 1 inch of snow cover as of 8:00 AM. The winds are brisk, so there probably won’t be much snow accumulation on the ice. Areas further west and north have even less snow than that, so the effects of this particular snowstorm will be minimal in north central Minnesota.

So for the weekend, I can honestly say that there are some options for eager ice anglers. But I can’t recommend straying very far from home to do it, especially if your destination is one of the deeper panfish lakes.

If I planned to fish this weekend, I guess I would go with the flow and head toward Upper Red Lake with everybody else. That’s where 90% of the traffic is headed according to Bill Powell at Fred’s Bait in Deer River. There’s about 8 inches of ice along the shoreline and many of the anglers are reporting good catches of walleye. Most folks are still walking out, but there are a few starting to use ATVs for travel.

Bill Lundy at Mort’s Dock said yesterday; "Fishing has been great the last few days. A lot of guys are fishing 7-10 feet of water. We’re sitting on 9-10 inches of ice. We still have some houses open this weekend on shore."  Call Mort's Dock >> 218-647-8128

If catching panfish sounds better to you, then do your homework before heading out to the lake. Select only the shallowest lakes you can find that offer a reasonable chance at finding panfish. Move slowly and only on foot, carry the necessary safety gear and check and check often for trouble spots.


The National Weather Service is suggesting that we might have another big snowstorm headed this way. The current forecast for Saturday says; “The snow could be heavy at times, conditions will otherwise be cloudy, with a high near 32.”

I don’t know how to factor that forecast into my report. By the time I see whether the 2nd storm hits or not, it will be too late to offer any guidance about your weekend plans.

Like most of you, we’ve got big plans for Thanksgiving, so I probably won’t have an update on Thursday morning. I’ll post a few words on Friday though, especially if there’s breaking news about the next storm. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report November 27, 2019 "Remembering the Memorable"

image links to ice fishing video Do you remember the story I wrote last January about my >> ice fishing trip to Mille Lacs with Dustin Monson?

In it, I wrote about how he’d taught me one of his favorite tricks for triggering strikes from what appeared to be lethargic, non-biting fish.

I adopted his “trick” and during that day, it helped me convert several “lookers” into aggressive striking fish. In fact I told Monson that his trick worked so well for me, that I wanted to whip up a quick video to share with you.

Well that video finally surfaced this weekend and I think you should be sure to watch it. Not only will it reveal his technique for triggering strikes from lethargic fish, you’ll get a kick out of what happens while he’s explaining it. I promise, the 3 minutes you spend watching it will definitely be entertaining!

View Video >> Fishing Your Confidence Lure

image links to the Pines Resort website Lake Winnibigoshish The Pines Resort November 27, 2019

image of pines resort rental shelters They say a picture tells 1000 words and this one makes it pretty clear that we’re in a holding pattern for the moment. Our rental shelters are all spruced up and ready to go, now we just need some more ice in Winnie’s Dam Bay before we can get them out onto the ice for winter.

Right now, there's still open water in the bay near the Winnie Dam. But don’t let the open area by the river fool you; most of the shoreline and protected back bays of Winnibigoshish are well frozen already.

Ice thickness varies, but in some of the popular spearing areas, there are over 7 to 9 inches of solid ice. Spearing shacks are starting to pop up along the west side of the lake and up at Third River too. So far, the traffic in Tamarack Bay has been light, with only a few ice fishermen walking out from the shoreline. But we found almost 10 inches of ice not far from Plughat Point, so it wouldn’t be a surprise if we see a few spear houses pop up in Tamarack bay shortly after Thanksgiving.

For the moment, there aren’t many first hand fishing reports from folks around the lake. But the Thanksgiving holiday typically marks the unofficial beginning of the spearing season for northern pike. It won’t be long after that before we start seeing the perch and walleye anglers heading out for what promises to be a busy and productive ice fishing season.

We’ll be posting regular fishing updates as the season progresses and we’d like to invite you to stay in touch, feel free to check in with us for late breaking news about fishing and ice conditions.

We want to remind you too that we’ve got winter lodging and rental ice shelters available at affordable rates. Please give us a call for more information. — Chad & Melissa Mertz The Pines Resort 218-246-8546 or 1-800-342-1552

image links to Ely Area, Arrowhead Outdoors Fishing Report November 27, 2019

"Ice Conditions - Despite as much as 10” of snow falling in the area, lake ice remains in good shape and is growing. Warm temps and rain has removed almost all the snow on area lakes. 6-10 inches of good ice is being reported on many of the area lakes. Ice cleats are a most for anyone looking to walk on the ice.

Panfish - Anglers have been finding panfish relating to green weeds in 15 feet of water and less. Small tungsten jigs tipped with wax worms or soft plastics continues to be the ticket. Some anglers have been locating panfish out in deep water, but success for those anglers has been limited.

Pike - Pike anglers have been having great success finding pike with tip-ups. Large suckers have been most popular, but dead bait has also been effective. Anglers have been targeting large shallow bays in 10 feet of water or less.

Walleye - Walleye anglers have been harder to find then the fish itself. The few walleye anglers out, have been reporting excellent fishing during the evening hour and just after dark. Jigging spoons tipped with a minnow head has been very effective. If they fail to bite that, a minnow under a dead stick or bobber often proves to much for the walleye to pass up. Key deeps remain 15-25 feet of water." — Arrowhead Outdoors, 218-365-5358

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report November 22, 2019 "Dodging An Iceberg"

image of snow in grand rapids Anglers in north central Minnesota dodged an iceberg overnight Wednesday and into the wee hours Thursday morning. Snowfall amounts totaled only about an inch here in Grand Rapids and from what I could see, shouldn’t have much impact on the formation of ice over the short term.

Thanks to the meltdown that occurred earlier this week, the surface ice on most area lakes was already wet and slushy. The heavy, water-laden snowfall just sort of melted into the surface water and then re-froze as temperatures fell below freezing Thursday.

That’s good news for those of us whose recollection of the slushy mess we endured last winter. Too much snow stacked up on the ice before the ice was thick enough to support the extra weight. Those conditions caused transportation problems that persisted all winter long.

Right now, every inch of ice thickness will help and if the weather forecast is accurate, we should see ice getting thicker this weekend. On some shallow Itasca area lakes, there are already 6 to 7 inches of “decent” looking ice, but these lakes are the exceptions.

Most of the deeper lakes in the Grand Rapids area have ice ranging in thickness from 3 to 5 inches. There’s even less ice in current areas and there are still several extremely deep lakes that have open water.

Snowfall amounts in the arrowhead region were higher, so if slushy conditions do rear their ugly heads, it will probably occur further north and east of the Itasca area.

image links to tesla pickup truck videoThe buzz about ice fishing is getting a little louder, so I’m sure that we’ll see more dark houses popping up this weekend. I’m sure that there will be more anglers hoofing it out to the crappie holes on small lakes too.

I’m not sure if I’ll fish this weekend or not. There are still a few days of deer hunting available and if I can find someplace decent to hunt, I may take one more crack at locating Mr. Big. Whether I’m on the ice or not, there will be reports coming in from around the area and I will definitely keep you in the loop.

image of jeff sundin OH, and by the way, I watched the un-veiling of Tesla’s new pickup truck yesterday.

I can’t say that I thought it was the prettiest truck I’ve ever seen, but I sure did like that stainless steel body. Hitting the side of the door with a sledge hammer didn’t even leave a dent. There were a few other pretty cool features too and the base price isn’t much higher than most of the other brands.

I for one could see getting really interested in one of these trucks. But the trouble, as always, boils down to $$$. So if you’re feeling flush and want to add me to your Christmas list this year, I adore the color of stainless steel, I really do! fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

image links to Lake of the Woods, LOW Tourism November 21, 2019

image of lake of the woods The cold blast Mother Nature gave us a week ago made it appear that we'd be getting things started early this winter. But with milder temperatures this week, things are on hold because ice on the south end of Lake of the Woods is ice covered with scattered areas of open water.

There is some spearing taking place for pike this week on back bays such as Bostic Bay and Zippel Bay. Resorts have spear houses available. Regardless of where you fish, work through a resort for safety. Back bays along the extremities of the Rainy River are also iced up.

On the Rainy River, most areas of the river are covered with a thin layer of ice with some areas of open water. There is no traffic on the river at this time while ice is forming. Extra caution is always needed with current and this year the current is stronger than most years.

Up at the Northwest Angle, ice is forming nicely and locals have been out monitoring ice conditions. Progress is being made, but no ice travel is recommended at this time. NW Angle resorts will communicate when ice fishing begins.

We have a nice start to making ice so when colder weather hits, things will get locked up fairly quickly. Lake of the Woods Tourism, (800) 382-FISH

image links to Ely Area, Arrowhead Outdoors Fishing Report November 21, 2019

"Ice Conditions - Ice reports range from 3 - 10 inches of good solid ice. Reports of 4 Wheelers on a few area lakes have already been reported, but the majority of anglers are traveling on foot. Current areas and the deeper lake in the area largely remain ice free.

Walleye - Walleye fishing has been nice and steady for many anglers. Anglers have been finding them in 17-23 feet of water during the evening hours and after dark. Rippin raps, flashy spoons and the always effective minnow under a bobber have been very effective.

Pike - Anglers have been targeting the shallow bays for big pike. Both tip-up and spear anglers have been having mixed success. Anglers fishing with big suckers under tip-ups have been having the best luck. Best fishing has been in shallow bays, in less then 10 feet of water near deep water. Green weeds have also been key to finding the best pike fishing.

Panfish - Anglers have mainly been targeting sunfish this last week and many have been having great luck. Small tungsten jigs tipped with wax worms or soft plastics have been the most popular and effective. Anglers have been targeting them in less then 10 feet of water, inside weedbeds." — Arrowhead Outdoors, 218-365-5358

New Video November 20, 2019 "Early Ice Walleyes On Upper Red Lake"

image links to videoThere aren't a lot of places that anglers can get to on Upper Red Lake yet. But for those who are willing to hoof it, there are walleyes within reach.

Nate Altendorf was there over the weekend and 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 ..."

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

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report November 20, 2019 "Grand Rapids Area Ice Conditions"

image of tioga bay The recent warm up has been a setback for the formation of ice in the Grand Rapids area.

It’s been above freezing every day since Saturday and on Tuesday; the air temperatures reached over 40 degrees. By yesterday afternoon there was standing water on top of the ice on area lakes everywhere.

In one way, I’m disappointed; I had my snowmobile and all of my fishing gear ready to go and we had planned a run to the lake on Tuesday. But with sketchy ice conditions and more warm weather coming, we decided to scrap that plan. We’ll wait for the next cold front before taking our snow machines out on the ice.  

In another way, I’m happy that the weather warmed up over the past few days. The snow that was here before won’t be a problem now, whatever was left of it, finished melting yesterday.

I was remembering the slushy conditions we endured last winter and I was beginning to worry about snow stacking up on the thin ice. The last thing we needed was another winter with too much snow cover, which works against the ice gaining thickness. Barring any heavy snowfall before the next cold snap, we should see ice thickness entering safe territory in the very near future.

image of ice thickness at splithand lake Some of you may be thinking that the ice is already safe. You’ve already seen fresh videos or maybe you’ve been out there on your favorite lake catching fish yourself.

It is true, there are a few folks on the ice right now and for most of them, the fish have been cooperating. In fact I walked out on one lake myself yesterday; I never heard so much as a crackle and when I drilled my first hole, found 6 inches of good ice.

So if you’re in the mood for a walk on the ice, I do know that there are “CERTAIN LAKES” in the Grand Rapids area with enough ice to provide reasonably safe conditions for foot travel.

The problem is that there are also a lot of others that have open holes, thin spots and cracks. Since the meltdown, the surface of the ice all looks the same to me, it simply isn’t possible to judge from the shoreline where the safe ice ends and the trouble spots start.
So if you’re planning to head out this weekend, think it through and take it slow.

Inexpensive alternative for snowmobile ski guides.

image of snowmobile ski guidesThe sudden warm up last weekend melted all of the ice and snow on my snowmobile trailer. That gave me an open window to replace the old, worn out ski guides with fresh ones. The only problem was that the project came up suddenly and I didn’t already have the plastic ski guides.  So I started searching for someone that carried them locally.

That’s when I stumbled into this tip about using PVC garage door jambs in an old post on a snowmobile forum. The idea looked like a good one, so I started searching and found that they were available at virtually all of the big box DIY stores.

The ones I found at Menards came in 10 foot lengths and I picked up 3 of them, 30 feet in all for less than $60. Here are the particulars: Royal® Building Products 11/16" x 5-13/16" x 10' White PVC Jamb Trim, Model Number: 5682426 Menards® SKU: 4179381

The jambs have 5 ribs, so I installed mine using 1-1/4 inch all weather cabinet screws on each of the outside ribs.

Durability is the only open question and obviously I won’t know about that until after I’ve used them this winter. But from what I can see, they appear to be “on track” to making my life a little easier this winter. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

New Video November 20, 2019 "Big Baits Catch Fish Of All Sizes"

image links to video Lots of ice anglers, me included have grown up with the mindset that smaller, more subtle presentations are best for winter walleyes.

But these days, I gravitate more and more toward big baits for walleyes, especially during peak feeding times or when I’m fishing a lake that offers potential to catch a big fish.

Here’s a video that we produced last winter and in it, I talk about some of the situations where laying down the finesse rods and picking up large, aggressive lures can be a really good idea.

View Video and Learn More >> Big Baits Catch Fish Of All Sizes

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report November 13, 2019 "What a difference a week makes!"

image of woman lake Just 7 days ago I wrote; “In the Grand Rapids area, it’s still a lot easier to find open water than it is to find an ice covered lake. But the odds of stumbling into frozen water are increasing by the day.”

But on Tuesday, the tables were turned 180 degrees. In my travels, all but the most stubborn, deep water lakes in the Itasca region were frozen over. Even notoriously late freezing waters like Pokegama, Deer Lake and Woman Lake were losing the battle against this blast of cold air.

In fact by Tuesday afternoon, the only places I could find open water were deep, spring fed lakes like the Tioga Pit, Caribou Lake, Trout Lake and the deepest, mid-lake portions of Pokegama.

Some of the area’s shallow lakes have been frozen for nearly a week now and there were reports of ice thicknesses ranging from 3 to 4 inches. In a few rare cases, ice thickness already exceeds 5 inches, but don’t count on finding much more than that just yet.

Upper Red Lake, according to Chad Benson at Mort’s Dock had a uniform 6 to 7 inches of ice cover. But as one group of over-eager ice fishermen found out yesterday, that’s still not enough ice to guarantee a safe trip.

image of tioga pitYou may have already seen images of rescue crews helping the stranded anglers back to shore after strong winds from the south caused a wide crack that separated them from the shoreline.

Luckily, nobody got hurt and hopefully we’ll all learn from their misfortune that ice thickness under your own feet is not the only factor to consider before heading out onto the ice. We must also take into consideration what conditions “might be” in areas that have not yet been checked.

There’s always a clamor to be among the first ones to venture out on the ice and that’s okay. But remember to put your own safety ahead of the rush to get out there. We don’t often think that anything bad can happen to us, but sometimes, when we’re not careful, it does.

Ordinarily, the deer hunting season affords me a little extra time to have fun with stories about the pursuit of Mr. Big. This year though, it looks like the ice is going to force me back into work mode before I get the chance to figure out how to get him in front of me.

I did get a chance to hunt over the weekend though and while I didn’t harvest a deer, I still thought it was a successful hunt.

I did see a few deer out there and if the timing had varied by a minute or two, the outcome could have been a lot different. To sum it up, there were a couple deer that I wouldn’t shoot, a couple deer that I couldn’t shoot and one deer that I would have shot if I could have shot.

Anyway, we’ll see how it goes from here and in the meantime, I’ll keep you posted about ice conditions. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report November 7, 2019 "Ice Watch 2019"

image links to ice fishing report It’s one thing to talk about puddles and ponds with ice on them, but you know that winter is here when full-size fishing lakes freeze over.

O’Leary Lake, the one you see pictured here is a 140 acre lake with a max depth of less than 20 feet. I saw it yesterday, but based on the snow cover, I guess that it must have frozen over a couple of days ago. Deep water lakes in that neighborhood still had open water, but ice was gaining on them too.

Upper Red Lake is freezing fast as well. Yesterday, a note from Bill Lundy at Mort’s Dock says; “As of this morning it’s looking really good. There is ice as far as we can see. If the cold weather keeps coming and we don’t get a lot of snow this weekend, we’re probably (only) a couple weeks out.”

Frankly, I’ll be surprised if it takes more than a week before we start seeing images of people venturing out onto the ice. There’s always a clamor among certain folks to produce evidence that they are “the first ones out”. I’m not quite in that big of a rush; I can wait a few extra days. But once the ice looks good for an adventure, I’ll be out there too.

No matter whether you’re chomping at the bit to get out onto the ice or not, the ice fishing season will be here soon, so it’s time to get ready. To that end, I might as well get started by answering some of the questions arriving at my in box.

image links to fishrapper home page November 7, 2019 — "Why Did You Buy A K-Drill?"

image of KDrill Q) On Tuesday, Dr. Jim Davey wrote; “Jeff, (last week) you mentioned you were going to pick up a K-Drill. Why that particular drill? Have you had experience with other drills? I saw a video the other day about the Ice Bee made by Rapala. Have you any experience with it? The video looks good.

A) Thanks for the note Dr. Jim; yes, my new K-Drill arrived here this past Monday.

Let me preface my answer by saying that I’m not actually using the electric to replace my gas auger; I just wanted to add a lightweight and convenient alternative to my arsenal of ice gear. Most of the stand-alone electric augers on the market are really good too, and if I’d been in need of a full-scale replacement, I might have chosen one of them instead.

The main reason I decided to go with the K-Drill is because over the past few years, I’ve seen these drills in action a bunch of times and I have been thoroughly impressed by their performance. I’ve seen them drill a lot of holes, in a lot of situations, so I’m confident that this auger will drill a hole wherever I need one.

Making the decision even easier for me was that I already have a good drill to use it with. So instead of shelling out $500+, I’m up and running for $200, ready to drill my first hole. If I needed to go out and buy the drill too, then I would have looked at some of the other augers on the market as well.

I used the link you sent me and I looked at the Ice Bee video. I couldn’t see any reason not to be optimistic about that product. But I also could not find any place in the US to buy one. Maybe they’ll be available later, but for the moment it’s hard to speculate about the viability of that item.

If the Ice Bee does become available here, I’ll find out what I can and add the updates to my original article >>  

Like I said, the gas auger that I bought a few years back is still working great, so the K-Drill will only need to serve as a good supplement. But if I was in the market for a new full-time auger, then I'd have to take a really close look at the whole array of augers on the market. By the time the St. Paul Ice Show rolls around, there's liable to be more information too and I'll be sure to post updates about whatever I learn. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

November 7, 2019 "Jeff Sundin's Go To Ice Spoon"image links to crappie fishing video

"It never fails, the mid-day action starts to slow down, I reach for some lunch and wham, a nice walleye whacks my lure.

No matter how fast the action is, or not, you have to have bait in the water before you can catch a fish.

For me, making sure that I have the right bait in the water has gotten a lot easier lately.

Here’s a nice little video testimonial about Lindy’s Glow Spoon. In it, you’ll hear my thoughts about why this lure has become one of my all-time favorites and why it’s the first lure I tie on at every new fishing spot." View Video >> Jeff Sundin's Go To Ice Spoon

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report November 6, 2019 "Noting The Note-Able"

image of lake with partial ice cover In the Grand Rapids area, it’s still a lot easier to find open water than it is to find an ice covered lake. But the odds of stumbling into frozen water are increasing by the day.

On Tuesday, I drove north toward Marcell and found several lakes in the later stages of ice development. The scene depicted in the accompanying photo was a common one, shallow bays are frozen, while mid-lake sections remain open.

Lakes in various stages of ‘freeze up” obviously provide lots of opportunity for taking pretty pictures. But that’s not the only reason I take these “ice-watch” driving tours. For me, watching the process unfold provides a lot of information about where and when I can get onto “safer ice” for my first fishing trip.

What I’ll be watching for over the next several days are lakes that have ice cover all the way from one shoreline to the other. These will be the first ones on my list to fish during the earliest part of the ice season. Once there’s a full sheet of ice covering an entire lake, ice thickness will increase at a fairly uniform rate. So if I know that there are 6 inches of ice near the shoreline, there will likely be decent ice over the middle portion of that lake as well.

Equally important to me is keeping track of lakes that are not freezing uniformly from shore to shore.

Let’s say for example that your favorite lake has quite a bit of deep water in the middle, but also has a lot of littoral area where water depths of 15 feet or less are common. It’s not unlikely at all that the shallow portion of that lake could freeze well before the water over the deep portions ices up. A few weeks from now, when it all looks the same, knowing where the dividing lines are could be really important.

I’m bringing this up now because being a bit later than usual, the upcoming firearms deer season opener will provide us with a bonus opportunity. While we’re travelling to and from deer stands, it won’t be hard to make a few detours and check out lakes that we’re interested fishing in a few weeks.

I wouldn’t want you to lose focus on your deer hunt, but if you’re in the field this weekend anyway, why not check out a few lakes too. The information could come in really handy after the deer season is over. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

image links to Fish ED Video Fish ED Video November 6, 2019 "Jigging Lures For Both Ice and Open Water Fishing"

image links to video about Lindy Glow Streak Join Fish Ed host Jon Thelen as he talks about the versitility of the Lindy Glow Streak!

This isn’t just an ice lure, it is equally as effective in open water too. The Glow Streak's hybrid design employs a single tail hook combined with a razor-sharp treble hook to ensure good hookups.

The unique swimming action combined with internal rattles and glow stick technology will put more fish on the ice or in the boat for you this season!

Learn More >> View Video Jigging Lures For Both Ice and Open Water Fishing

image links to Lake of the Woods, LOW Tourism November 5, 2019

image links to rainy river report "On the south end of Lake of the Woods, late fall walleye fishing continues for those willing to dress up in warm gear and fish. The south shore of Lake of the Woods continues to hold good numbers of both walleyes and sauger and these walleyes will remain through ice up.

Anchoring up with a jig with frozen shiner is still the best method. Nice mix of walleyes and saugers for those few out on the water. Some small chunks of ice starting to appear. Small bays and some harbors are already iced up.

On the Rainy River, walleye fishing was good this past week. Anglers had good luck with numbers of walleyes, but not as many of the trophy walleyes as the week before. Fish caught in spots with current breaks mainly jigging with minnows or in some cases, plastics. Depending on the location you fish, focus on water depths in the 7 to 16 foot range, that will get you in the ball park. There is still a strong current so 3/4 oz to 1 oz jigs are the most common weights.

Up at the NW Angle, walleyes fishing remains good but there are few anglers on the water. Fish are staged in traditional fall spots. Most looking ahead to ice fishing. Jig and minnow still effective and the go to. Muskie bite has been great all fall."  Lake of the Woods Tourism, (800) 382-FISH

image links to fishing guide jeff sundin Jeff Sundin Fishing Report November 4, 2019 "Ice Arriving At Area Lakes"

image of upper red lake at Morts Dock When I ordered my new K-Drill last week, I never dreamed that I’d be ready to use it so soon. But it looks like by the time it arrives, I’ll be un-packing the box while I drive toward the lake to use it for the first time!

Depending on where you are when you read this, you may or may not be surprised to hear that ice is coming fast to the northland. In fact, it will not surprise me if we begin hearing that folks are walking out on Upper Red Lake at the same time other folks are walking into the woods for the deer opener next weekend.

At Mort’s Dock on Upper Red, Bill Lundy says; “Ice is coming pretty quick now!! After Monday looks like it’s below freezing for as long as we can see.” The accompanying photo makes it look like there’s more ice than there is, most of the frozen water is within a hundred yards of the shoreline. But it won’t take long for the lakes mid-section to freeze over, especially if the next week features calm winds.

image of ice covering small lake You could be saying; “That’s no big news, everybody knows that Red Lake is one of the earliest to freeze.” You’d be right, Red Lake does freeze earlier than most, but I won’t have to drive to Washkish to see ice today.

Itasca area residents are already reporting ice covered lakes in our region. On Sunday, I got an email from Sean Casey letting me know that his lake, a small, moderately deep one in the Marcell area was already locked up. By this morning, it’s probably got a dusting of snow on it too.

My step daughter’s boyfriend has been travelling between Duluth and Grand Marais lately. He told us on Saturday that there are numerous frozen lakes between the two northeastern towns. “They’re not just frozen a little bit, they’re solid ice with snow covering them completely”; he said.

Looking at the upcoming weather forecast, I think it’s safe to say that we’ll see a lot of frozen water by the end of the week. I’m not trying to rush you into the ice season, but I will be patrolling the Grand Rapids area this week. I’ll make a point of getting some hard statistics about where I find ice and how much of it there is when I do.

One good thing about lakes freezing and snow falling is that it finally gives me a chance to talk about some of the experiences we had last winter. Like the trip we took to Lake Winnipeg last winter.

image links to walleye fishing videoIf you haven't already done it yourself, you've probably at least heard about fishing for "Green Backs". Those giant walleyes that people catch on Lake Winnipeg during the ice fishing season used to intrigue me to no end! That is until I finally got to go up there and see for myself what all of the hubbub is about.

Here’s a video that came about last winter while we were testing a new ice fishing lure. At the time, the Lindy Glow Streak was in the middle stages of development and we already knew that it was going to be a winner. We had been catching fish with it everywhere we’d tried them. The purpose of the Winnipeg Trip was to find out whether those big Green Backs liked them as much as the fish south of the border did.  

View the video to find out more about >> Big Walleyes and What They Like to Eat

That trip wasn't the only one we made last winter, in fact we were really busy testing, perfecting and documenting the experiences. That means there will be plenty more videos, photos and articles where this one came from. Stay tuned, I'll be sharing them all with you as soon as they become available. fish smiley image — Jeff Sundin 218-245-9858 or EMAIL

image links to wired2fish Wired2Fish October 2019 "StrikeMaster Lithium 40v Ice Auger Review"

image links to ice fishing review "The ice fishing industry is undergoing a power transformation with new-age lithium-ion battery-powered ice augers coming on the scene with value and performance that has many questioning the viability of gas-powered models.

Renowned Mille Lacs Lake fishing guide Tony Roach shares his opinion of the StrikeMaster Lithium 40v ice auger after two years of guide punishment. Few drill as many holes as Roach, who's known for keeping customers on fish by "ice trolling" (non-stop moving) upward of 90 days annually.

He discusses durability, cutting speed, the weight factor, battery longevity and why quiet electric power is a big deal on ice." View Video and Learn More >> StrikeMaster Lithium 40v Ice Auger Review