Try Lake of the Woods for the big walleye
My report this week is a follow-up from last weekend's trip to Lake of the Woods. What a beautiful weekend to spend on the ice. The weather was mild with no wind and sunshine on Saturday and cloudy, foggy, but pleasant temperatures on Sunday. We caught 30 walleye/sauger on Saturday with a dozen of them from 14 to 19 inches and one dandy 26 inches. The late afternoon/early evening bite was our best time both Saturday and Sunday. On Sunday we caught 25, but many small fish. We had only five that were over 14 inches, with the biggest a 27 1/2 inch beauty. The majority on Sunday were 10 to 12 inches. It is still fun to get those bites also.
Our best depth ranged from 26 to 32 feet of water. We fished midlake humps about 14 miles out from Pine Island. At this time of year, you will want to stay on the plowed roads with trucks or on the groomed trails with snow machines.
Another local group was up for the action on Saturday and went into one of the fish houses provided by one of the resorts. They caught 25 and kept a dozen eaters. That says to me the bite is happening all over the lake, with some areas producing a little better than others at times. We did hear of groups getting 50 to 60 fish for the day. Many of the resorts still have many houses available and expect at least two to three more weeks of excellent walleye action.
Our best bite was jigging buckshot rattle jigging spoons and Swedish pimples with the gold and pink colors working the best. Most fish were tight to the bottom. We did get some suspended from one to three feet off the bottom. This seemed to happen more during the mid-day and when the sun was shining the brightest.
It pays to have a locator to pay attention to what the fish are doing when they come into your fish hole.
On a very personal note, our community lost a great fisherman, more importantly a great guy, and I lost a great friend and fishing partner, with the passing of Donny Hewitt. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife Cindy and his twin daughters Jamie and Ashley. He will be missed and remembered.
(Laabs runs Brad Laabs Guide Service in Detroit Lakes.)