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Minnetonka Bass Opener

June 16, 2017

May 27, 2017

Went to Lake Minnetonka for the Minnesota Bass Opener out of tradition.  Clear, calm conditions again.  Tried the usual spots but fishing was kind of slow, at least for me.

I caught several nice bass, but not what I had dreamed about.  Had a musky chase a Zoom fluke near some milfoil.  Saw another 40″ inch musky basking on a sandy bar in about two feet of water with not a care in the world.  Maybe I should have fished for musky instead.  Season is not open though.


– Hats

Because we can

May 27, 2017

May 20, 2017

Went to Hyland Lake this morning and donned the waders for an hour of bass fishing in the rain before heading to work.  Why?  Because, with the new catch and release regulations we can now legally catch and release bass earlier than previously allowed.

The water level was high due to the amount of rain recently.  Lucked into  one small bass on a spinner bait near some submerged timer. Classic.




May 27, 2017

May 14, 2017

The weather on Mother’s Day was forecast to be even better than yesterday.  And it was.  Calm, sunny and warm.

I wanted to see if I could replicate yesterday’s success and hit the water bright and early again.  Trolled a few different spots today.  Scratched out one 15″ walleye from the same spot as yesterday, so it wasn’t a total fluke. Caught a few bass.

– Hats

Opening, a window

May 27, 2017

May 13, 2017

Another fishing opener, again on Lake Minnetonka.

Unseasonably warm.  Cracked a window open when I went to bed.

Arrived at the access at a little after two a.m. and found one boat on the trailer and heading home.  Must have caught their limit.  Or, not.  Just as I was getting ready to leave the dock another boat on the water pulled up so I asked him if he caught his limit.  “Nope. Trolled the shallows, dunked some leeches and minnows.  Nothing but a couple of small bass.”

Great.  Sounded like my plan was going to be an epic failure and I hadn’t even left the dock.  Ideal walleye conditions.  Not a cloud in the sky and flat calm.  At least it was dark.  Well, relatively so as there was a full moon.

Trolled the shallow points with Rapalas, pitched a jig and leech combo and tried shiners beneath a lighted bobber for a little over two hours with only one small bass to show for my efforts.  Then a feeding window opened for about 15 minutes just as it started to get light.  First an 18″ walleye, followed by a 21″ and a 26″, that I released.  All hit a Rapala minnow trolled over a rocky point.


And just like that, the feeding window closed.

– Hats

One in a Vermillion

April 30, 2017

April 30, 2017

Yard work in the sunshine yesterday.  Fishing in the rain today.  I figured it would be a bit chilly on the lake with an east wind and rain in the forecast so I trekked on out to the Vermillion River.  As expected, the water was high and off color; perfect for a shot at the brown trout rumored to swim there.  I say rumored because it has been some time since I actually caught a fish in the Vermillion.  It has also been said that if you want different results, you need to do something different.  With that thought it mind I decided to toss Rapala minnows with my spinning gear.

After an hour or so of firing away in the rain it seemed like the odds of catching a fish were akin to One in a Vermillion.  Then, just as I was about to pull the lure out of the water, a sudden flash, followed by a thump and, fish on.  Soon this 12″ – 13″ brown trout was thrashing about in my net.

I guess there are fish in the Vermillion. Make that two fish for sure as I caught a smaller one about an hour later on a Blue Fox spinner.


Canadian Crawlers appear to be popular along this stretch of river.  Nothing wrong with crawlers, just disappointing to see how many empty containers littered the bank.  Might need to put a tariff on it.


Note for the next trip:  might want to try a crayfish pattern crank.


The songbirds were really singing this morning.  A beautiful, springtime sound.

Morning Song

Up with the Robins

Cardinals and Chickadees

Joyous morning song.

– Hats


Tale of Two Waters

April 29, 2017

April 23, 2017

Fished Prior Lake this morning.  Beautiful day.  Calm.  A bit chilly though, with surface water temps only about 55 degrees in the small bays.  Little bass were plentiful in the bays and also caught a few sunfish and crappies.  Sparse though.  Fished a main lake hump/point in 8 – 10 FOW and caught numerous 7 – 8 ” bluegills and a few crappies, if my jig got below the bluegills.  It was calm so you could see the fish swimming along the bottom and there quite a few bass cruising around.

First bass of the year.



Took my youngest daughter to Lotus Lake in the evening and what a contrast.  Surface water temps were about 65 degrees.  The water was dingy with visibility restricted to less than a foot.  I can only imagine what it looks like mid-summer.  Brings to mind a recent article in the paper about the impact road salt is having on our lakes and that at some point the salinity will render them uninhabitable for fish.  Scary thought.  Goes to show how fragile these ecosystems are and how important it is to support efforts to protect our waters.

The crappies and sunfish were active and we caught dozens of both species in just under two hours of fishing.  All little ones though, about 4 – 5″.  Lots of action so it was fun but again it was really concerning to see the degraded water conditions.


– Hats




Bird Nest

April 29, 2017

April 13, 2017

Took the cover off of the boat and was surprised to find a bird nest constructed in the mount of the trolling motor.  Quite an impressive feat in only three and a half days.

Hitched up and went to Lake Minnewashta in the evening with my dad and oldest daughter.  A little cool on the water, as was the action.  Caught some crappies and sunfish.  I too created my own bird nest.


Well done!

– Hats

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