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Fishing Report for Week of July 24, 2017

Reeds Fishing Report

Leech Lake Fishing Report Sponsored by REEDS Family Outdoor Outfitters in Walker, MN. REEDS has everything you need for your summer Leech Lake fishing trip! Stop in at REEDS for the Best Prices & the Best Advice!

The recent high temperatures are helping the water get to the magic temp in the mid seventies where all species tend to speed up their feeding. This will also cause the fish to spread out and not school up. Don’t get frustrated, this is the time to utilize your locator and find the fish. The best places to hit are the weed edges, rock piles and Flats.

For walleyes on Leech Lake start around the weed edges, this will tend to give you the most action this time of year but will yield a variety of fish from small Sunfish to monster Musky. The depth will range greatly dependent which side of the lake you’ll be fishing from 5-10’ to 14-20’. The techniques that to utilize here are pulling spinner rigs with a gold, green or purple spinner but many of the other colors can be effective too. Pulling a spinner rig on a bottom bouncer with a crawler pumped full of air with a worm blower will be an effective way of catching almost anything that it running that weed edge at that moment. This is where patience is important, as is lots of bait. The leech approach with the spinner techniques is just as effective but with a smaller species window. The Little Guy rig from Lindy will give your bait the wiggle from the wobble of the head of the rig. This added effect will separate your bait from other bait rigs on the lake; possibly adding to a better return of fish.

Utilizing the above techniques while running the rock piles and flats can be effective but more often than not the best way to fish these areas is to pull crankbaits. This is where pulling a crank with a long line (75-100’ behind the boat) is a very effective approach to harvesting fish and covering lots of water. The Cranks to use are ones with colors of purple, blue/silver, gold, and crawdad. Some great brands are the Rapala (Shad Dancer or Shad rap), Berkley (Flicker Shad/Minnow), Reef Runner (little ripper) and Lindy (walleye Demon/River rocker). These all carry a unique shake when trolling so it is always best to carry many different styles. The best size of crank to use right now is a 5-7, these sizes give you your best results. The best way to get your depth without a lot of gear would be to use a lead core line. This is a weighted line that will get those smaller lures to run to deeper depths to trigger the fish. This line is usually spooled on a line counter reel for the purpose of knowing a general idea of how much line is spooled out to accurately guess how deep your lure is running. This is some very low cost but very beneficial gear to have during this time of year.

If you’re going after the monsters that lurk in Leech Lake, the best technique is to have your heavy gear, large 8-9’ heavy to extra heavy rods paired with a Abu Garcia Revo Beast or a Diawa Lexa HD. The few approaches that we recommend are using top water baits in the morning and evenings (twisted sister clickers, whopper plopper, large buzz baits) up into the shallows. As the day pushes on, you should switch to jerk baits, in line bucktail spinners, medium cranks or swimbaits (Chaos Poseidon, Headbangor lures, Musky Innovations and Musky Mayhem) in and around that 5-15’ range. When it is the high heat of the day switch to a super large crankbait and start trolling the weed edges in at 10-20’ on the lake. The best trolling cranks are by Phantom Lures and Supernatural Baits these guys are the best. I would be looking for musky in the weed edges (portage Bay, Federal Dam and Sheep Pasture) along the shoreline but also around the shallow rock piles (Pelican Reef, Submarine Island, Mokey Reef) out in the big lake.

If you need some more excitement the Bass should be your target. The best Bass fishing is in Mornings and Evenings in the shallows hitting on weedless topwater. As the day goes on move deeper out to at least the edge of the lily pads or rice and start in with your plastics (Yamamoto, Yum, Zoom and Berkley). Most effective rig and easiest to fish is wacky style but also use Texas and drop shot rigs to get those bass biting. Great colors of plastics that are effective are green, purple, pink, and red.

If you are guest staying with us, we have all the rods, reels and lures ready in our Pro Shop for you to use to chase your favorite fin. We will mark a map for you with some of the latest fishing spots and we have all your favorite snacks for a day on the lake. Don’t forget, call The Merit for dockside delivery when your cooler gets low or you need some lunch! 218-836-2062.

Leisure Outdoor Adventures

Leech Lake

The bite has been up and down with the morning and evening bites being best.  Try slip bobber fishing in the weeds in 6-14 feet of water with a small leech or lindy rigging with a crawler or minnow on the breaklines in 18-28 feet of water depending on the day.  In Walker Bay, the shoreline breaks, under water points, and bars have still been best.  Some of the humps are starting to show fish, but not always ones that want to bite.  As we progress farther into August the bite should pick up.

On the big part of the lake, pulling crankbaits has been the best presentation by far.  #5 or #7 Shad Raps or Flicker Shads are the best best.  Try either long linging them, pulling leadcore, or using planer boards.  12-17 feet of water has been best.   You will go for a while without catching one, but keep covering ground and you will come across schools.  It seems as if the bright and calm days are best for this bite, with reason for that being the water is more clear and the fish can see the baits better.  Colors will vary from day to day and with sun light and water clarity so be sure to change things up.  If you aren’t trolling breaklines along flats, look to the edges of the reefs or mud areas on the lake as there are suspended fish you can target as well.

Otherwise many of the lakes in the area are also kicking out great multi species action.  Both smallmouth and largemouth bass fishing has been great.  Working rocks and gravel in 12-15 feet of water has been best for smallmouth and largemouth are still holding on weed edges in 10-15 feet of water.  Tubes, jigworms, drop shot have all been good. Many of these lakes will also hold great panfish, so focus on those weededges in the evenings with a jig and a tube and fan cast until you find them.  Typically they will either come out of the weeds or be suspended off of them in deeper water.  Also don’t forget many of these lakes have some good walleye fishing if you find the right one, with many relating to the weedlines in 18-25 feet of water.  Pulling lindy rigs with crawlers or minnows your best bet.

Jason Freed

President of Leisure Outdoor Adventures



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