Minnesota Walleyes Through the Ice

It’s been far to long since my last post, but fishing has been pretty good.  A few of the guys usually take a trip up to Upper Red Lake or Lake of the Woods about this time of year to hammer some walleyes, but we are not going to make it up this year due to schedules and two of us heading to the Bahamas for some relaxing and deep sea fishing.

Last week Blake, Sty and I fished for a few days on Lake Ida near Alexandria.  We aren’t much for chasing Crappies all over the bays, so we pretty much targeted Walleyes on the break lines.  The deeper water seemed to produce the best for us.  We moved the house four times, and didn’t really seem to do better or worse, it was all pretty consistent with a dawn and dusk bite.

The first day and a half were right in the middle of a cold front that came through the area.  The fishing was fairly steady at dawn and sunset, but other than that, there was a cloud of small Perch with the occasional Northern swimming through.  All of the fish we caught were on set lines those first couple days with the Walleyes coming in to check out our jigging lines, but taking the set lines.  We had a variety of small jigs and plain hooks on the set lines, and that didn’t seem to matter, it was the slower presentation that seemed to be the key element.

WalleyeIda walleyeWalleye







As things warmed up the second half of the trip, the fishing slowed down, but the fish we did get were more aggressive taking our jigging lines and leaving the set lines alone.  A variety of jigging spoons in a variety of colors produced nice Walleyes, so again it really didn’t seem to be the bait or the color, but more the aggressive action that triggered the bite.

in the ice houseWe didn’t light it up over the three days of fishing, but we ended up with about 25 Walleyes, 3 Northerns and a few small Perch.  Blake was the big winner the fist couple days catching the biggest and the most fish.  I chalk it up to laziness since he wasn’t jigging so he had twice the set lines Sty and I had, but in reality, it was a smart move given the bite.  It was a blast being out there with the guys though in Sty’s new Ice Castle.  I love my Clam Guide Series portable, but the comforts of a wheel house make for great days on the water.

One of our traditions over the past few years has been to chisel a bunch of crystal clear lake ice to keep our cocktails cold.  Blake happened to pick an iceberg for his drink.  Not sure why, but the lake ice seems to last much longer than ice cubes.  I’ll have to look into the reasoning for that one day.

Tight lines, and be careful out on the ice!


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