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Four Days

March 24, 2018

March 3, 2018

Client meeting at 8 a.m. sharp on a Saturday.

Client meeting on a Saturday?

What was I thinking?

The temp was forecast to be in the forties so a trip to the Kinni crossed my mind.  But, since the meeting was in City of Prior Lake I decided to give ice fishing a go in order to save on windshield time.

Ended up fishing on Fish Lake in Scott County.  I was there one time, 30 plus years ago.  Small, bowl shaped lake with one mid-lake hump as the primary feature.  Fished all around the hump and on top in about 12 FOW and eeked out one little perch.  Disappointing to say the least.

At least I tried new water, I guess.

March 11, 2018

Time for some trout fishing.

Decided to try a new spot on the upper Kinni and arrived at about 8:30 a.m.

Beer is normally not on the menu for breakfast but I had picked up a Peanut Butter Stout at Excelsior Brewing and decided to give it a go.   Good thing I did because it was the highlight of the day, sad to say.


Beer For Breakfast

Peanut Butter Stout

Today’s refreshing breakfast

Belch. Awwww, life is good

Fishing, or at least my attempts at fishing were dismal.  Got skunked. Sure it was a new spot, with lots of good water, but my efforts were lacking.  Last year a red midge was the ticket every time I went.  This year?  Couldn’t buy a trout.  Probably wasn’t getting deep enough and should have been fishing streamers in the deep holes.  Chalk it up as experience.

Oh well, next time.

In a Valley Fair

In a Valley Fair

Fresh snow, a cardinal sings

Hear spring leap forward

March 17, 2018

Been hearing all these stories about how good the fishing is on late ice. Went to Lake Minnewashta and tried two holes in 5 – 22 FOW near a spring hot spot for crappies and sunfish.  Nary a fish.  Tried a mid-lake hump.  And?  You guessed it, perch.


Beginning to wonder if I know what I’m doing.

March 18, 2018

Back to Minnewashta.  Fished the break in the north end.  Noticed a couple guys fishing there yesterday so I thought it might be worth investigating.  Hit the ice at about 8 a.m. and started catching sunfish and bluegills in 10 – 15 FOW.  Moved out to the 20 – 25′ range and just happened on a school of crappies suspended off the bottom.  No giants but they were biting as soon as a I got the bait down.  Pretty fun. Tasty too!


Moved back in shallow where the sunfish and bluegills continued to pound away.  Caught an 11′” crappie in shallow too.  Plus, Bass.  I caught four and lost three others.  Kind of fun.


Nice solid bass to end the day.





Maxwell Bay – Perch Blizzard

February 25, 2018

Ice fishing wasn’t even on the agenda today until I talked to a friend who was headed to their cabin for a little ice fishing action.

With no local bait shops, I headed to Wayzata Bait and then to Maxwell Bay in hopes of catching some panfish.

Tried a hump, deep hole and an underwater point.  It was a perch blizzard in an actual blizzard.  All I could manage was finger long perch.


– Hats

Prior Lake

February 25, 2018

Fishing on the 17th was good and I thought it would be even better on the 18th with a storm moving in.


I struggled to catch anything on Prior Lake in the morning and it was just as difficult on Minnetonka, even though the temp was in the mid 40’s.  Very windy.



Big Island

February 25, 2018

It has been at least ten years since I’ve ice fished near Big Island on Lake Minnetonka. Years ago, when Roy’s Bait was still open, they stored ice houses, one of which was ours, on Big Island.  The crappie fishing at times was exceptional.  Bait shops close, kids are born, and next thing year know, it’s been a decade, or more since you fished your old hot spot.

The weather was very nice on February 17, 2018, so I decided to recapture some of those fishing memories.

Crappies and Sunnies in 15 to 24 FOW.  Had to move around a bit but it kept me entertained.  Great to go back to an old spot and have some success.

– Hats


Chisago Lake

February 25, 2018

January 28, 2018

Went to Chisago Lake this morning with a buddy.

Caught the smallest Sunfish imaginable.


And surprisingly, two largemouth bass.


Tried deep (perch) and shallow (lots of small sunnies with a few bigger ones mixed in and a small crappie.

– Hats

Waconia Winter

January 28, 2018

January 27, 2018

As part of his birthday present, I treated my dad to a day of fishing in an ice house rented through In Towne Marina on Lake Waconia.


Years it has been since I fished Lake Waconia in the winter.  During the day it is usually small bluegills or perch, depending upon the depth, and in the evenings you run into some crappies or walleye.  Time permitting, I’d have preferred to fish in the evening but the kids schedules, winter dance recital and a hockey game did not permit it.  7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in House #6 it twas.


Great set up with electric lights overhead and lights under the floor to illuminate the holes at nice.  Comfy heater that kept it warm.  Couple benches and a little table.  Really a nice rental.

Caught one tiny crappie on an ice jig and minnow right away, then it was all bluegills and sunfish in about 12′ FOW.  Caught most of the bluegills and sunfish dead sticking a wax worm on a little jig.  Jigging seemed to spook the fish.  The bites were very light and often you’d just see the line twitch. Also, caught quite a few by looking down the hole and setting the hook when the wax worm disappeared from view.

Fun spending time on the ice with my dad and my son.  Give the folks a call at In Towne Marina if you are looking to fish Waconia and want to rent a house.




Return to Ice Fishing (Part 2)

January 28, 2018

January 21, 2018

Another pregame fishing opportunity.  Headed to Forest Lake in Grand Rapids a little before nine.  Found a a couple of holes from yesterday that were not frozen over and started catching bluegills right away on a wax worm.  Nothing huge.  Also, managed to catch a few crappies before heading to the game.

The big trip for the day was a stop at Lake Mille Lacs on the way home.  I mean we had to drive right by this renowned fishery, so how could we not give it a shot?  Plus, it would be a first for my son on the lake.

Rented a house at Terry’s Boat Harbor.  The house was awesome and easy to get to thanks to the well plowed roads.  Great experience that only would have been better had the fish cooperated.  Fished a spot near Segouchi point but nothing was moving from about 1:45 p.m. to 5 p.m.  Not a peak time, so not surprised.  Well worth the experience though as my son enjoyed it and talked about coming back again.

– Hats



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