Summer 2022 Fishing & Outdoor Reports
Fishing and Outdoor Reports
Check back weekly for updates from Dick Beardsley on the fishing & outdoor reports. Find out conditions on different lakes in the area and how the fish are biting.
May 18 - Fishing Report
The 2022 Minnesota fishing opener has come and gone, and there were some good reports and some not so good. The wind really was blowing hard both this past Saturday and Sunday! It wasn’t too bad until about 9am on both days and then it started howling and high winds always make fishing tough for a few reasons. 1) boat control can be difficult. 2) this time of the year with the colder water and the fish just finishing up spawning they aren’t real aggressive when they hit a jig, so with the wind it’s much harder to detect those subtle bites, and 3) if you're pitching jigs, you get that bow in your line from the wind and that makes it even harder to detect a bite. In shallower water, say 12’ or less, I like using a 1/8oz jig, but I went up to a 1/4 or 3/8oz jig and that helped a bit. Most of the walleyes were coming from 6-10’.
The northern pike were pretty active as were the jumbo perch and you mix that in with a few walleyes and some bass, and we had a fun time! The best reports I’ve heard were the lakes with flowing water coming in. The Cass Lake chain of lakes the bite was pretty good for some. Same with Winnie and of course Upper Red is always good on opening weekend but you're fishing bumper boats on Red and for me I just don’t enjoy that as much. Shiner minnows were non existent for the opener, but they should be available sometime this week. If you're looking to catch some walleyes from shore, it’s hard to beat the Mississippi River where it comes out of Lake Irving into Lake Bemidji that small stretch of river will hold some walleyes for about a week and then they start dispersing out into the lakes.
Don’t get worried if you had a tough opener catching walleyes, the bite will only get better as we head towards Memorial Day weekend!
Please remember to practice selective harvesting, by doing so we will continue to have great fishing for years to come!
May 11 - Fishing Report
The much-anticipated Minnesota fishing opener gets started this Saturday May 14th, and I’m excited! Even though I’ve already been open water walleye fishing a few times out in South Dakota, the opener always brings me butterflies! The big winds this past Saturday is exactly what the doctor ordered, and it took the ice off of most of the area lakes. Lake Bemidji ice finally was totally gone by late Sunday. As of Monday morning, Cass still had some floating ice in areas, but that should be gone by the end of the day. Upper Red still has some ice, but that should be all gone by mid-week. Good news is the lake levels are way up, so there should be no problems launching boats!
With the late ice out, folks are wondering "where will those walleyes be?" Water temps are going to be cold, so some of the walleyes will be spawning, others may have just finished and recuperating. Me and my clients will start shallow pitching jigs into the gravel/rocky areas. If no fish are found shallow, we will start working deeper until we make contact. With the cold water temperatures, the spot tail shiners may have not started to move real shallow yet, so I’m thinking some of the best fishing might be along that first break in 10-12’.
Jigs and minnows are a hard combination to beat, and that’s what we will be starting with, but I’ll have live bait rig poles all ready to go.
The Minnesota DNR has a lot of work to do this week trying to get all the docks in at the access’s and fixing up access’s that got beat up from the ice. I know they will do their best to get docks in but be prepared to perhaps not have a dock especially at some of the smaller less fished lakes.
As always, on opening weekend there will be lots of activities at the boat ramps. If you're waiting in line to launch that’s the time to get everything loaded in your boat and ready to go when it’s your turn. If someone’s having trouble backing their boat in instead of getting mad and frustrated please offer a helping hand!
Have a great opening weekend everyone and please remember to practice selective harvesting, by doing, so we will continue to have great fishing for years to come!