Angler success has improved over this past week as fish start to school up. Fall colors are peaking which makes for a great day on the lake. Loons are starting to flock up and lose their summer colors which is a sure sign they are getting ready to migrate but warm weather is keeping them around longer than normal. The mild weather has also kept some waterfowl like teal and wood ducks from migrating which is resulting is decent hunting for local birds.
Walleye and sauger are being caught with regularity in a wide variety of depths. Even though a jig and minnow is producing the best, a lindy tipped with a minnow is also producing. With such a wide variety of depths producing, look for traditional fall areas and active fish. Last week on a couple fishing trips I was finding them anywhere from 18’-37’. Once we found active fish, every cast produced a fish. Water temps are still in the low 60’s.
While everyone else is seeking the state fish, maybe look for some smallmouth bass. They are starting to show up on the reefs in big numbers with a jig a minnow working best. Once located, fishing can be world class.
Crappie fishing has also been fantastic. Finding them can be a challenge but once located, it is also producing a nice alternative to walleye and sauger.
Grouse hunting has been sporadic at best. Even with the foliage hindering visibility, hunters just aren’t seeing or hearing the birds. Hopefully once the leaves have dropped and more hunters venture further of the trails, the hunting will improve.
Duck and goose hunting has been good to excellent. The mild weather has kept local birds in the area but we do need some migrants to move in as locals will eventually move south. They are starting to get decoy shy this past weekend which is a sign the locals are getting smart and we don’t have any migrants moving in quite yet.
All in all, this is great time of the year to be in the woods or the water. Falls colors are fantastic which makes a great background when taking pictures. Come visit us on Kabetogama and Voyageurs National Park. You won’t be disappointed!
As always, we all hope to see you soon…..
Jason and Robyn
Cooper’s Gateway General Store