Thursday, July 30, 2015

The Mighty Mississippi

The Mighty Mississippi
By Mike Raetz

The Mississippi River, to most, is a very intimidating body of water.  However, what most don't realize is it can be some of the best fishing around, especially when lakes prove tough.  At your fingertips, you have endless miles of great fishing opportunities and a chance to catch a fish of a lifetime. When fishing a river there are 2 main things to look for that will increase your chances for a wonderful day on the water. First and foremost look for slack water. Slack water is a break in the current where an object blocks the flow and slows down a small area to almost no moving water.  These areas will hold fish looking to ambush prey swimming by, particularly brown bass. The next is structure, IE mats of weeds, rock piles and brush. Rocks are a primary area that draw smallmouth to feed on crayfish and small bugs.

Equipment used on the river is very similar to your tackle you would use on any lake. But for your rod and reel set-up a little more bulk is a good idea. Using braided line is better to keep  line from fraying as that will happen given the debris and rocks prevalent in a river. I like to use 15lb all the way to 65lb braided line but a happy medium is to use 25lb test line. For baits it is really pretty simple and don’t over think it. Any weedless style skirted jig with a craw style trailer or topwater frog will do the trick. The weedless style jigs are going to help you get through the rocks and wood without getting hung up so easily. Topwater frogs or perhaps a popper lure are very popular for pulling over thick sets of lily pads and mats of weeds where these fish will go on the warm days looking for shade. Dark colors are best for crawfish trailers and other finesse baits because the clarity is poor. When using a darker bait, choose one with a glitter flake in the lure will allow the fish to see it from farther away giving you the best chance at a bite.

Take these tips and hit the river for some outstanding fishing!

Friday, July 3, 2015

Leech Lake Fishing Report

Leech Lake Fishing Report

Well things are changing all over the lake with bugs still hatching, water temps in the mid  to low 70s,
and tons of perch and minnows swimming throughout the lake.  With all of this, we have found a mixture of results with some days being excellent fishing and other days it being what I call the “walleye grind” on the lake.

The Main Lake Rocks are still producing fish.  Having a staggered bug hatch has helped keep this bite active.  The morning seems to be the best time to be fishing the rocks.  Pulling spinners is the best method and mixing up blade colors has been key.  Dialing in the color with the speed and you will set up a trolling program that will put fish in the boat.  With walleyes actively feeding and moving around, spinners are the ticket in covering water and finding the active schools of fish.  We have found that 1mph to 1.4mph has been the ticket in 16-20ft of water on sunny calm days and 11-14ft of water on windy days.  Annex, Submarine Island, Red Rocks, Pelican Reef, Mokey, Huddles, and West Bar have all produced fish this past week.   If spinners aren’t working, slow down by blowing up a crawler and using a lindy rig to work through the schools of fish.  

Wind Blown points are still producing fish if you get a steady wind from the same direction for a couple
days in a row.  Depending on the conditions, you will need to cover the water column.  On a good windy day, fish are still being caught in 6-8 feet of water pulling lindy rigs with crawlers or leeches.  Stoney, Little Stoney, and Ottertail have all been good.  On calmer days, look to fish the steeper breaks in 14-18ft of water.

Walker and Agency Bays are producing some fish on humps and shoreline breaks.  14-25ft of water has been the ticket pulling lindy rigs with crawlers or sucker minnows have all produced fish.  Also slip bobbering fish in and around cabbage beds or weed edges with a lively leech is also producing fish.  

Continue to be versatile and try fishing new water when you are out there.  Getting away from the fishing pressure like always is a major key to success.

Tight Lines

Leisure Outdoor Adventures

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