The best bite this week has been in 28-30 feet of water in the mud for walleyes and saugers. Plain hook or jigging tackle with a rattle like a buckshot rattle spoon have been getting some nice fish tipped with a minnow. Gold, pink, glow, and green colors. An occasional tullibee, pike, sturgeon, and eelpout have been reeled in too. Check out the 56-inch sturgeon in the slide show. We have 17-20 inches of ice and 1-5 inches of snow on average in areas we fish and travel right now.
Vertical jigging has been helpful to catch the eye of the fish. Pink and gold 3/8 or 1/4 oz jigs have been working the best this week in 23-27 feet of water on a sand bottom. Mostly walleye are being caught along with some saugers and an occasional pike, perch, and burbot. Anglers are reeling in a variety of sizes but several walleyes 14-16 inches and 30+ inch pike. We currently have 18-20 inches of ice in the areas we fish and 8-12 inches of snow.
Trails are marked and continue to be groomed. We could use more snow. The lake trails are in much better condition than the land trails right now due to the snow cover.
Check out the pictures of the week. We currently have 14-17 inches of ice and 1-5 inches of snow, (more in drifted areas) where we fish and travel. The best fishing depth has been in the mud in 23’-27’. A mix of walleyes, saugers, and eelpout are being caught in a variety of sizes. The best tackle has been gold or glow jigs or spoons but on the more finicky days a plain hook. Minnow is the bait of choice. Electronics such as a Vexilar really helps catch rates.
We do not maintain public access but there are several in the area. Check out Adrian’s or Morris Point to name a few for access and current conditions. As always please remember, ice conditions vary throughout the lake and change daily.
Come wet a line and enjoy the great outdoors. Midweek January openings available.Click here to book your trip or call 800-862-8602.
Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge & Eagle Ridge
Yellow & Purple!
Thanks for tuning into this week’s report. The hot tackle colors this week have been 3/8-1/4 oz yellow or purple jigs and spoons tipped with a minnow. We have 18-20 inches of ice and 6”-12” of snow n the areas we fish and travel around the houses and island. 23’ of water in the sand has been the best area to find some nice walleyes, saugers, and a few pike and perch. Deadsticking is working better than jigging but it never hurts to try a little of both and see what works best for you.
With the Canadian Border closed, how do you get to the island? 1) The Lake of the Woods Passenger service is running. Trips are available from Sportsman’s Lodge in Baudette to our doorstep via bombardier.
2) The snowmobile trail is marked and grooming has begun.
Happy New Year! Ice continues to thicken and the fishing is cranking up here on Lake of the Woods. Check out some recent pictures from our guests.
Have you been fishing with us recently? We always love to see your photos. If you would like to be a part of a future fishing report, text your pics to 218-395-0042.
Currently, we have 13-16 inches of ice and 0-5 inches of snow in the areas we fish and travel. We received a few inches of new snow last night. The farther north you go on the lake, the more snow you will find. The trail from Baudette to Oak Island is staked. Grooming from Baudette to Wheeler’s Point was done a few days ago. Four Mile Bay to Oak Island will be groomed tomorrow. For more information on local snowmobile trails click here for the south shore and here for the Northwest Angle and Islands.
Anglers have been getting their best bite in 23’-27’ in the mud. Lots of saugers around right now and some nice walleye. Sizes have been ranging 10”-17” and an occasional lunker walleye. A 3/8 or 1/4 oz jig and a minnow have been working well. Gold, glow, orange, and pink have been good colors. A few eelpouts continue to be caught and check out the 14” crappie Nathan caught in the slideshow. We don’t usually see too many crappies in the winter where we fish so this was a surprise. Gotta love Lake of the Woods! You just never know what might nibble at your line.
Heading out on your own? We do not maintain public access but there are several in the area. Check out Adrian’s or Morris Point to name a few for access and current conditions. As always please remember, ice conditions vary throughout the lake and change daily.
The season has begun in the islands! Catching some nice fish.
We currently have 12-14 inches of ice and 9-12 inches of snow in the areas we fish and travel around the island. Anglers have been finding the best bite in 20’-24’ in the sand lately. Gold, glow, pink and white jigs tipped with a minnow have been the sought-after feast of the walleyes. We have been catching mainly walleye along with a few saugers.
With the Canadian Border closed, how do you get to the island? The Lake of the Woods Passenger service has started running for the year. Trips are available from Sportsman’s Lodge in Baudette to our doorstep via bombardier. The snowmobile trail is marked and grooming will begin tomorrow from Baudette to Oak Island. An ice road is planned to be plowed and open up from Warroad/Springsteel to the Island within the next few weeks. For more information on these services click here or give us a call at 800-772-8411.
Thinking about a trip? We have openings available January through March at our 3 locations. Contact us today 800-862-8602.
First off, we hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable holiday. It has certainly been a different and trying year for everyone as we all know but as we reflect, we here at Sportsman’s are grateful for all of the great employees, supportive guests, and fans that have stuck by us this year and continue to allow us to provide a place for guests to visit and enjoy the great outdoors. Thank you for your continued patronage! We really appreciate it and are looking forward to 2021.
An update from the lake at Sportsman’s Lodge Rainy River
Our season started a little over a week ago. We now have 10-13 inches of ice and 1-5 inches of snow in the areas we fish and travel. The temperature gauge is dipping today. Sounds like it is going to be lows below zero for a while along with some fresh snow.
The best fishing depth has been in 23’-27’ in the mud. We have seen a strong run of saugers this week along with some walleye, and occasional sturgeon and eelpout. The best tackle has been a plain hook and a minnow or gold or pink jig tipped with a shiner. The average ride out to the houses is 15-25 minutes. Masks are required during the ride out so please remember to bring one. We have reduced load sizes, increased ventilation in the bombardiers, and doing everything we can to keep you safe.
Venturing out on your own? Check out Adrian’s or Morris Point for public road access. As always please remember, ice conditions vary throughout the lake. Check with the road maintainer for the current conditions and stay safe. As of 12/22, Adrian’s reported they have 10 1/2 to 13 inches of ice. Their access is closed today due to blizzard conditions but will open sometime on 12/24. After Christmas, allowing small to mid-size vehicles not pulling anything. No half-ton trucks. Plan to let four wheelers and side by sides pulling out wheel houses up to 18′.
Trail Update: We once again helped out the local snowmobile club and assisted in the marking of the snowmobile trail from Baudette to Oak Island this week. The trail is marked and ready for snowmobile travel. Grooming will begin as soon as ice conditions will allow the equipment to safely be on the ice. Snowmobile travel only is advised until we can gain some more ice. The trail had 7-15 inches as of yesterday. Ice conditions vary off the trail. For your safety stay on the trail and follow the black stakes.
An update from the lake at Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge and Sportsman’s Eagle Ridge on Oak Island
We open on December 26!
The ice is progressing nicely. We now have between 9-13 inches of ice and 4-5” of snow in the areas we fish and travel. Some snow and cold temperatures are blowing in today. The weatherman says it is going to be pretty cold for a while. We aren’t complaining. Bring on the ice!
The staff has been busy getting everything ready. We are excited to kick off another season.
Options to get to the island this winter
Bombardier Transportation from Baudette Will begin soon, the forecast is looking favorable. More ice checks will be done this weekend. Stay tuned for more information or contact Lake of the Woods Passenger service or us anytime at 800-772-8411. Have a reservation arriving soon? Please give us a call if you have any questions, we have options for you at 800-772-8411.
Snowmobile to Oak Island
Trail Updates: Baudette to Oak Island We once again helped out the local snowmobile club and assisted in the marking of the snowmobile trail from Baudette to Oak Island this week. The trail is marked and ready for snowmobile travel. Grooming will begin as soon as ice conditions will allow. Snowmobile travel only is advised until we can gain some more ice. The forecast is looking favorable. The trail had 7-15 inches as of yesterday. Ice conditions vary off the trail. For your safety, stay on the trail and follow the black stakes.
Ice fishing season has begun! We have gained a few more inches of ice this week and we are catching some nice fish. We now have 9-11 inches of ice and just a few inches of snow in the areas we fish and travel. The best bite has been found in the mud in 17’-25’ using gold, pink, chartreuse jigging spoons and jigs tipped with a minnow. 70% of the fish caught have been walleye and 30% sauger which is pretty typical for this time of year. Average size has been between 12”-19” with an occasional 22”-30”.
Check out some of the fish caught this week! We have a few openings Sunday – Wednesday before Christmas and December 26 for a one night/one or two day in the short term as well as days throughout the season through March if you are looking for a good time. Give us a call 800-862-8602 or click here.
Venturing out on your own? Check out Adrian’s or Morris Point for public road access. As always please remember, ice conditions vary throughout the lake. Check with the road maintainer for the current conditions and stay safe.
Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge
We are gaining ice! Currently we are now finding 9-11 inches of ice and 1-4 inches of snow in the areas we travel around the islands and will start fishing for the year. The guides are busy moving houses and getting the trail ready for you. We are looking forward to a December 26 open date.
On the big lake, ice is not quite ready for travel yet but it is getting better. The guides will be checking ice again Sunday. Stay tuned for more information.
It’s time! The guides have been working hard checking ice, prepping the trail and getting houses ready. We have some day houses ready now and will continue to pull more out as the week goes on. All of our house rentals include transportation off a private trail. We currently have 8-10 inches of ice in the areas we fish and travel and the forecast continues to look favorable for ice making to continue. Give us a call 800-862-8602.
Going out on your own? For your safety, it is always a good idea to check with local resorts or outfitters for the latest conditions as ice conditions vary and change across this large lake. Some of the local ice roads near us are currently allowing ATV’s, snowmobiles and portables out at this time. For the most up to date information, it is best to contact the road maintainer of your choice for the latest conditions. Stay safe and fish on!
Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge
Ice continues to thicken in the islands. The forecast is looking good for a December 26 open date. Give us a call to make your winter reservations 800-772-8411.
We headed out today to do more ice checking. We are making progress but need a few more days. Based on how the forecast looks we are eyeing up Sunday, Dec 13, or soon after to kick off our season on the lake with our day houses. Safety first! Today we found 5-9 inches of ice. As soon as we have 8-12 inches of ice in the areas we fish and travel and have the right conditions to do some flooding/freezing of some areas, we will get started. It is getting close. Do you have your reservations in yet?
Our sleeper houses will need some additional inches of ice. Stay tuned for an update on a possible start date Friday.
We will start checking ice further out and across the lake next week. The trail will get marked as soon as ice conditions allow usually within 7 to 10 days after we kick off our season on the south shore. Our Oak Island locations due to the more areas of current in their neck of the woods and based on the forecast will start their season right after Christmas.
We provide transportation to all of our fish houses on a private road and groomed trail. If you are venturing out on your own please remember not all areas of the lake have the same ice conditions and conditions can change. For your safety, please check with local resorts and outfitters before heading out and always stay on the marked trails.
We are looking forward to another fun year of ice fishing! We hope you can join us.
Sportsman’s Lodge Good News! We are gaining ice. We are now finding 6.5-9 inches of ice in most areas we will fish and travel once our season starts but still have some areas we want to take a closer look at. We fought fog today so we will be doing more checks tomorrow once it clears. For snow, we have a dusting of snow on the lake and a couple of inches on the shore. Stay tuned for more information! We are excited to see the forecast is looking colder! Please remember not all areas of the lake have the same ice conditions. Always check with local resorts and outfitters before venturing out. We are looking forward to another fun season! Get your reservations in call 800-862-8602 or click here
Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge We are gaining ice at the Northwest Angle too. In our travels between the mainland and Oak Island, we are now finding more areas with 5-7 inches compared to the 3-6 inches last week. Still, areas of less, and we haven’t ventured south yet but we are gaining! Snow, we have just a few inches and haven’t had any measurable precipitation within the last few weeks which we are very happy with at this time of year since it helps the ice making. Stay tuned for more updates! For reservations call 800-772-8411 or click here.