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Winter Ball, Spring Training and Opening Days 1 and 2

May 23, 2015

May 23, 2015

Baseball is in full swing so I thought I’d use the Winter Ball, Spring Ball and Opening Day metaphor to kick off my first post for 2015.

Winter Ball was actually pretty futile as I only had one trip… to Hyland Lake in mid-January.  Caught some real monsters as pictured below.  I’m saving my days for the open water – well, at least that is what I keep telling my self.


Managed two trips to Whitewater State Park.  The first trip yielded one small brown trout and three rainbows.  Pleasant day in the water, literally as my waders developed a slow leak.  Nothing beats leaky waders. The second trip resulted in zero fish for me and three rainbows for my buddy.  All fish were caught on midges.  Water low and clear.



Now that I think of it, there was one frustrating (bizarre?) trip to the Kinni in March.  No fish.  Overcast.  Calm.  The fish should have been biting.  See the musings of Andy Roth at

Something to ponder…

Open water, finally. Spring training. Lake Minnetonka produced several bass and a few small crappies the second weekend of April.  Took my youngest daughter to Lake Parley on April 25.  Several accidental bass that hit our jigs and minnows but that was it.  Should have gone to Waconia like the guy at the bait shop recommended. Father knows best, right?  Not in this case.  Ventured to Lake Minnetonka on April 26 with my son and caught a mess of crappies and bluegills for a fish fry.  Yum!

Opening Day – Although this was the first year of the new catch and release for bass I didn’t partake and focused my efforts instead on walleye fishing.  Once again, I managed one small walleye; long-line trolling a Husky Jerk Rapala, and that was it. I need to figure out what to do once the sun comes up, find a different lake or fish the upper part of the lake, which has darker water.


While the DNR research and the catch and release tactics of most bass fisherman support the early catch and release season for bass, I’m kind of lukewarm on the change. Do our kids really need to play spring, summer, fall and winter baseball?  Ditto for hockey and every other sport for that matter.  Is it okay to take a break from the game or from bass fishing?  Seems to me that fish on lakes seeing less pressure are more eager to bite.  Could it be the same for musky fishing?  I remember several years back a couple of guys tossing musky top waters in Gray’s Bay three weeks before the season opened.  I’m sure they were fishing for bass or pike.  Wink..wink.  Would success go up if the fish were less pressured?  Just a thought.  I of course was in my Pelican Bass Raider and didn’t say anything being that they were in a 20′ Ranger with a 250 H.P. and could have torpedoed me with the baits they were throwing. I almost lost it when the guy in the back of the boat caught.  Good for him I suppose.  My point is: do we really need everything all day, every day?  Maybe I’m a relic but I do enjoy the lead up to opening day after a long winter.

The real bass opener found me on Bush Lake.   My dad and I caught nine bass, mostly on fire-tiger patterned cranks, and one pike on a Hang Time fly.  The water was really clear and it was awesome to see the pike nail it.  All but two of the fish were caught along the underwater pipe connecting Bush Lake to Anderson Lake.  Just goes to show the importance of structure.  On our way back to the access we saw several female bass in the shallows with males following and chose to leave those fish alone.



– Hats

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