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Monday, January 7, 2013

Ice Fishing Report

Detroit Lakes
The bite over the holidays and into the New Year has been excellent in the Detroit Lakes area. Crappies, sunfish, perch, walleye and northern pike are all being taken. Ice conditions are great due to cold temperatures and a lack of snow. While there is enough snow for snowmobile travel on the lakes, ATV travel has been difficult. Some anglers are drive vehicles out now that ice thickness ranges from 12- to 16-inches on most area lakes. Walleye have been biting in 16-34 feet of water and relating to sharp the breaks off the weedlines. Suckers and shiners on dead sticks or tip-ups have been working best. Fatheads or rainbows on jigs or jigging spoons have also been productive. Most fish have been tight to the bottom. Perch are relating to similar structure. Crappies seem to have two primary patterns: suspended off sharp breaks or hanging in the deep basin mud areas. Jigs, jigging spoons, small minnows, waxworms and plastics are all working well. Be sure to set your presentation 1- to 2-feet above the fish you are marking. Sunfish are still active in and above the weeds. For the most fish, use waxies, pieces of nightcrawler or plastics on small jigs. Northern pike action is best close to healthy weed growth when using large minnows under bobbers or tip-ups.

Otter Tail Lakes Area
Late last week, ice ranged from 6-12 inches thick on Otter Tail Lake, and anglers were bringing out their fish houses. Four-wheelers remained the best mode of travel. Fish were biting in 20-30 feet of water. All accesses were open. As always, please consult with an area bait shop or resort for the most current conditions, and remember that ice is never completely safe.

posted by Nick Leonard at

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