Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Mille Lacs Lake walleye guide: Big smiles and Big walleyes

Mille Lacs walleye guide trip chaos
Last week, Jim Ernster and I headed out to Mille Lacs Lake to guide for walleyes.  We had three little boys and three fathers.  One of my favorite parts of being a fishing guide is the chance to help little kids catch big fish.  The grins, yells of excitement, and best of all, memories are so awesome!  Mille Lacs Lake walleye fishing has been outstanding this year, and today would be just that.  Here is the story of big smiles and big walleyes. 
Jim and I got to Tutt’s Bait and Tackle in Garrison a little early, and were sitting in the parking lot tying on some Jolly Roger spinners.  A truck pulls up to Tutt’s and instantly two little boys come flying out of the truck.  Working as a team, they meticulously checked over everything outside of Tutt’s in 1.3 seconds.  It was clear that these little guys meant business, and wanted to get fishing so we headed over to the landing.   With their nonstop energy, they kept up the exploring of the landing and this time one of the boys found a dead walleye.  He picked it up (it had been dead for awhile) and was yelling, “I got one dad!!”  I was laughing pretty hard, and thinking that the day was going to be crazy!
Finally we got to our spot, and before we even got 100 yards trolling, BOOM!  Fish on!  We started the day with a very nice 22 incher.  Very shortly after that, I saw Jim netting a walleye.  We both had the skunk out of the boat in 10 minutes.  In my boat I had four clients: the two little guys (yes the one that grabbed the dead walleye J) and their fathers.  The boys used $15 push button rods that were bending just from the 2 ounce bottom bouncer.  On the other side the dad’s had fancy trolling rods with all the bells and whistles.  I’m not sure of the exact count, but the boys proceeded to catch most of the fish in the first hour.  We had a bunch of 21-23 inch walleyes, and so far the biggest was a 25 incher, caught by one of the boys.  Jim was catching them also, and the smiles were contagious. 
28 Mille Lacs Walleye
One of the dads busted out his iPhone, turned on some music, and the day just kept getting better.  I was trolling the edge of the mud, listening to country music, and watching the boys put on a clinic!  We were fishing in the middle of Mille Lacs but every time they set the hook, I’m pretty sure the whole lake knew it.  If the fish stayed hooked, it would be accompanied topside by a little boy with a huge smile, yelling like a wild man.  I was having a blast just watching these kids! 
           As the sun slowly got lower in the sky, the bite slowed down. The boys were tired and hungry, so they decided to pull the plug a little bit early.  The biggest walleye was a 28 incher (caught by a 10 year old J), we had a bunch of slot fish, and we even caught some keepers-but decided to throw back also.  We pulled into the dock still talking about the epic day of fishing we were lucky to experience.  They packed up the cars and took off, and Jim and I loaded up and headed home.  On the drive home, I couldn’t hide my ear to ear grin thinking about the awesome day of catching big smiles and big walleyes.  

See you on the water!! Capt. Tim Hanske     
Mille Lacs walleye guide fun
Bonus!  32 in pike


A nice Mille Lacs walleye

25 inch Mille Lacs walleye

Monday, June 25, 2012

Leech Lake Fishing Guide Testimonial

As a fishing guide group on several lakes in Minnesota including Leech Lake we are so excited when things go right!  Below is an email from a fishing guide client from this spring.  You can read more about their trip by Clicking Here 

"Our fishing group usually goes to Canada every year, however this year we decided to try something different and fish Leech Lake in Minnesota. Wow, did they ever exceed our expectations! We caught our limit every day and released many big fish back into the lake to catch again next year.
None of us knew we would have this kind of experience, thanks to our guides Jeff Andersen and Toby Kvalevog. These guys are Pros! They were by far, the best guides we have ever had and they really knew the lake. They were so accommodating and professional and I would highly recommend them to anyone who is looking a great fishing experience!

The amenities were awesome! The rooms were beautiful and comfortable and the dining room and food were great. Our group has been fishing for 30 years and this was one of the best fishing experiences we have ever had. We can't wait to come back again next year!"
Michael Kroloff
Des Moines, Ia

"Get Hooked and Make a Memory!"
Jeff "Breezer" Andersen

Book a Guided Fishing Trip with Leisure Outdoor Adventures Fishing Team at  We are providing guided fishing trips on many lakes including the Brainerd Lakes Area, Gull Lake, Whitefish Chain, North Long, Pelican along with the Leech Lake Area.

Be our friend on FaceBook at Leisure Outdoor FaceBook Page

Call 855-LOA-HOOK to book your guided fishing trip. 

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Leech Lake and Mille Lacs Lake guided fishing report by Leisure Outdoor Adventures

Hey Everyone!! I finally have a day off the water and a chance to report in to all of our fishing friends following along. Fishing on Leech and Mille Lacs lakes have been great. The month of June has been filled with many of my long time fiends and clients. Weather permitting, we have all been blessed with multiple big fish catches to go along with some nice dinner fare as well.
Spinner fishing has been a staple in the LOA arsenal this year. We are very happy to have formed a partnership with Jolly Roger Tackle company. Their rigs have been slamming the fish everywhere we try. The system works well in combination with the Jason Mitchell 10'6" trolling rods. Very simple fishing; Spinner, Crawlers, Trolling Rods, and Scotty rod holders. We have had our best luck moving at 1.2mph with this system.
The Leech lake fishing is best now on the main lake. West Bar, Annex, Submarine, Big Rock, Paris Trench, and North Bar ALL HAVE FISH and can be caught using live bait rigs and spinners in 12-15ft of water

Mille Lacs lake fishing is nothing short of phenomenal out on the flats. Fish the edges in 24-31 ft during the morning hours and off of the flats in the afternoon. Plenty of slot fish (17-28") to be had. Most trips we are burning through 30 plus fish during a typical trip. Keepers can be tough to find, but the action is tough to beat! For up to the minute reports, stop by or call Tutts Bait in Garrison. They have everything you will need and then some for your day on the water.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Fathers Day Fishing Trip on Leech

I had the chance to spend Fathers Day Evening with my Family (Kristine, Gavin, and Brooke) on the water.  I first took my 3 year old son out and he caught his biggest walleye.  Then it was the families turn and my wife Kristine's turn to catch the big one...And she did.  Those are special memories to a Fishing Guide who has the chance to share the excitement of fishing with his family.

"Get Hooked and Make a Memory!"
Jeff "Breezer" Andersen

Book a Guided Fishing Trip with Leisure Outdoor Adventures Fishing Team at  We are providing guided fishing trips on many lakes including the Brainerd Lakes Area, Gull Lake, Whitefish Chain, North Long, Pelican along with the Leech Lake Area.

Be our friend on FaceBook at Leisure Outdoor FaceBook Page

Call 855-LOA-HOOK to book your guided fishing trip. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Leech Lake Fishing Fathers Day Report Guide

Happy Fathers Day to all the fishing Dads out there!

Fishing on Leech Lake remains to be very good despite the large bug hatches that are going on.  As previously posted we are still fishing with Jolly Rogers Spinners and catching good numbers of keepers and lots of big walleyes.

Over the past weekend we had several guide boats out on the lake with some great reports from most.

Toby and I had the chance to fish with Randy, Tyler (Father and Son) and Randy, Blake and Alex (Father and two son team).  An awesome way to spend Father's Day Weekend together.

Our plan of attack was to go catch their limits and go hawg hunting.  Saturday morning we headed out early and had both boats of limits by 11:30 and off to chase the big ones.  We did just that with several fish in the upper 20 inch mark.  Over the weekend each angler caught their personal best except Randy B. who had to top the 30.5 mark.  The biggest fish was Tylers 27.75 incher.

Here are some photos.  Sorry for the short story but it's 11:00 P.M. and I have to get up at 4:30 A.M. to do it all over again!

"Get Hooked and Make a Memory!"
Jeff "Breezer" Andersen

Book a Guided Fishing Trip with Leisure Outdoor Adventures Fishing Team at  We are providing guided fishing trips on many lakes including the Brainerd Lakes Area, Gull Lake, Whitefish Chain, North Long, Pelican along with the Leech Lake Area.

Be our friend on FaceBook at Leisure Outdoor FaceBook Page

Call 855-LOA-HOOK to book your guided fishing trip. 

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Mille Lacs Guide Fishing Report

As many people in the fishing world have heard, the one lake in Minnesota that seems to be literally on fire right now for big walleyes is Mille Lacs.  We at LOA have been able to spend some time on the Big Pond the last week with great results.  Mille Lacs can be a daunting lake at times do to its sheer size and open water, which for some is intimidating but with the right gear and plan of attack success can happen out there and walleyes can be put in the boat.

Last Thursday, myself and fellow LOA guide Jeff Andersen hit the water to find some big walleyes.  We got to Garrison Landing around 7:00AM and hit the water immediately with two goals in mind.  The 1st was to enjoy the day and catch some walleyes and second get some great photos taken for one of our new product sponsors Jolly Roger Tackle out of Albertville, Minnesota.  After a short boat ride we pulled up onto one of our favorite mud flats, deployed the Jason Mitchell 10'6" trolling rods with a Baby Walleye Jolly Roger Spinner on one rod and a Sunrise Craw Spinner on the other rod and began trolling the edges and tips of the mud flats.  Within three minutes Jeff had a hook up and after a short battle a 26.5" walleye was put in the boat.  After some great pictures, a fist pound, and laugh, we knew we were in for a fun day on Mille Lacs.  As the day went on we continued to work anywhere from 25-33' of water and mainly on the edges of the mud flats and at times out off the edges.  What we found was the pods of walleyes are moving around all over and you have to pay close attention to your electronics when searching for them to plot your trolling run.  Spinners with crawlers far out produced lindy rigs and leeches for us.  The Jolly Roger spinners were the ticket all day long.  If you haven't checked them out, you really need to.  If you are a serious walleye fishermen who loves to troll spinners, this tackle company is where it is at.  We combined the Jolly Roger Spinners with 2oz Bottom Bouncers.   As day went on the fish kept biting, we had doubles and multiple fish between 25-27.5".  One thing to pay close attention to is your speed at which you are pulling your spinners.   We found that the best speed was around 1MPH to 1.3MPH that day and what we also found was as the day went on and conditions died down on the lake, we had to have the spinners running 50-55 feet away from the boat.  When we made these slight changes the fishing was very consistent.  This was by far one of the most memorable days I have had on the water in quite some time!

As the day winded down, Jeff suggested we take a break from the walleyes and hit up the smallmouth on the North End.  Much like the walleye fishing, we had a smallie on the line withing a couple minutes.  For the next hour we casted shaky head jigs and wacky rigged.  We caught multiple fish and saw many more!  It was an awesome way to end the day.

Saturday, Jim Ernster and I each had a guide trip on the lake.  Much like Thursday the bite was solid.  The fish were once again hungry and willing to bite.  I found the fish once again scattered, but leeches and lindys were the hot ticket for the guys in my boat.  The fish were relating to the edges of the mud flats and even at times on top of the flats.  I found my most consistent action in about 28-30 feet of water.  Jim's boat got a 27.5" Mille Lacs pig on a Jolly Roger Electric Perch Spinner and both of our boats caught alot of slot fish which seems to be the norm.  The lake and landings were packed, but with it being such a big lake you can still get to spots that are not getting pressured as much and find new fish.  Also be sure to seek out some other types structure as well.  Fish are being caught in the sand on the North end and I also got a report of some fast action on the rocks for walleyes throwing slip bobbers and leeches when the wind is blowing!

So the great thing is you can go and catch them so many different ways.  Lindy's, Spinners, and Slip Bobbers!  Be sure to stop in at Tutt's Bait and Tackle in Garrison for all of your bait and tackle needs.  They are a first class operation!  Mille Lacs is a great fishery, just remember to have a plan when you hit the water, be safe out there, and more importantly make some memories!


Book a Guided Fishing Trip with Leisure Outdoor Adventures Fishing Team at  We are providing guided fishing trips on many lakes including the Brainerd Lakes Area, Gull Lake, Whitefish Chain, North Long, Pelican, Mille Lacs, along with the Leech Lake Area.

Be our friend on FaceBook at Leisure Outdoor FaceBook Page

Call855-LOA-HOOK  to book your guided fishing trip. 

Leech Lake Fishing Report and Guide

As a fishing guide on Leech Lake you can only ask to catch boat loads of fish each and every day but the reality it's fishing and although we try our best those special days don't happen on each trip.  Awhile back I received a phone call from Micheal in Iowa who said he and three of his friends have been going on a fishing trip every year for the past 30 years and was interested in Leech Lake.  Micheal went on and explained the guys are use to the "rustic fishing" trip and cabin type feel.  I recommend Chase on the Lake (Visit Chase on the Lake Website) which is far from the "rustic fishing" feel he had said the guys were used to.  Micheal, after many conversations with the guys, had decided to stay at the Chase and fish with the fishing guides at Leisure Outdoor Adventures.

Pressure was on as mentioned above these guys were use to fishing Canadian waters.  We had been fishing Leech for a full month now and the bite was up and down with good days and then some pretty tough days.  Nervous to put these guys on fish...YES I was!

Our plan was to fish two full days and one 1/2 day.  The first morning myself along with Greg, another Leech Lake Guide, met the four guys at the Chase Docks ready to go.  The walleyes have moved into their summer locations, spread out on main lake flats, so the game plan was to cover water with spinners and crawlers.  Spinner fishing is a fast action game of efficiency covering water and contacting more fish then traditional jigging and live bait rigging.  So with my Jason Mitchell Elite Series 10'6" trolling rods and my custom Jolly Rogers Crawler Spinners away we went to the midlake structure of Leech Lake.

We pulled up to our first spot and immediately we caught a 22 inch walleye which was a great start.  After that it was game on and the boys were catching mixed sizes of walleyes and lots of keepers!  By lunch time we had our limit of walleyes in the Lund 2010 Pro Guide and we had lots of big smiles.  The guys said, "We never catch fish on the first day!"

Day #2 Toby who was fishing a tournament the day prior was my teammate for the day.  Our game plan was the same as the day prior.  We got to our spot and made the first pass and caught three fish.  The wind was flat calm and after that first pass things slowed down to catching only one walleye about every 20 minutes which still wasn't too bad but nothing compared to the previous day.  "Boys hang tight our wind is going to pick up and these fish are going to go bananas." I described to the eager fisherman.  I know they were thinking on a few occasions why haven't we moved?  So I told them, "Lets not leave fish to find fish and just wait these conditions out."  As I knew the wind was coming and it did.  I mean it really did and instantly we had three foot waves and rods started to go off.  On three consecutive passes we had three triples with all three rods going off at the same time.  It didn't take long and both Toby and I had our limits in the livewells and we headed in for the day.

We docked our boats right in-front of Chase on the Lake, headed up to the 502 Restaurant, and with all the guys we got to enjoy an awesome walleye dinner that Head Chef Max prepared specially for us.  Nothing beats freshly caught walleye and great company.  While at dinner the guys said, "I think we are done with Canada, no more stinky cabins, no more 16 hour drive, and lots of walleyes right here in Minnesota on Leech Lake!"  A response every guide wants to here after guys put their trust in our ability to put them on fish.

Day #3 We had even bigger winds out of the West and it was way too rough to get out to the main lake so we targeted some pike in the weeds and looked to catch some big fish in calmer water.  We caught several pike trolling spoons and Toby found a giant 30.5 incher that his client Abe was able to do battle with.

What a great three days of fishing with all the guys and we thank them for coming to Leech Lake!

Now lets get to the nitty gritty of the presentation.  There are some fine tune differences that can help you catch more walleyes while trolling spinners.  First off I mentioned the longer 10'6" Jason Mitchell Elite Series Rod.  There is no doubt in my mind that using these rods can make the difference.  It gets the bait away from the boat and helps with the second most important part the quality spinner rig.  Not all spinners are made equal and I truly mean this!  I have been using spinners that are hand tied by Jolly Rogers Tackle.  They are quality through and through from the best hooks, best spinners, best line and swivels.  The other key component to those spinners are the lengths.  It's almost nearly impossible to find a spinner length longer then 48 inches and Jolly Rogers comes in almost 10 foot snells which is another important reason to have a longer rod.  Those two product truly have made me a better fisherman/guide and that is why I can tell you about them with confidence!

Check out the Jason Mitchell Elite Series Rod by Clicking Here

For a limited time the exact rod I have been using is buy one get one free at Reeds Sporting Goods in Walker.
 Check them out here 

"Get Hooked and Make a Memory!"
Jeff "Breezer" Andersen

Book a Guided Fishing Trip with Leisure Outdoor Adventures Fishing Team at  We are providing guided fishing trips on many lakes including the Brainerd Lakes Area, Gull Lake, Whitefish Chain, North Long, Pelican along with the Leech Lake Area.

Be our friend on FaceBook at Leisure Outdoor FaceBook Page

Call 855-LOA-HOOK to book your guided fishing trip.