Dear Valued Guests,
Thank you for a great winter season. We enjoyed so many good times and good fishing.
Due to the times, we have decided Sunday, March 22 will be our last day of ice fishing and after breakfast,
Monday, March 23 our kitchen will be closed. We will update you as soon as things change.
Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge opens up Thursday, December 26!
The fish houses are ready! Tim and Josh fished for a few hours yesterday afternoon and kept some nice fish for supper and caught a northern too. Gold, red and orange are hot colored jigs right now. Right now we have 10-16 inches of ice in the areas we travel. Apps, pizzas, and cocktails will be available starting at 11 am Thursday and the full dinner menu starting at 5 pm. We will start serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily starting Friday. We look forward to seeing you soon!
Road from Young’s Bay to the Resort
The main ice road from Young’s Bay to the island is not quite ready yet so we will be using an alternative route for now. Guests, please give us a call ahead of time to be led out.
Trail from Four Mile Bay/Sportsman’s Lodge
The lake trails are marked with black stakes from Four Mile Bay near Sportsman’s Baudette location to Oak Island and Young’s Bay at the angle to the lodge. We don’t have much snow, 0”-6” right now, so if you head out, be sure to watch for bare spots and ice chunks. The Lake of the Woods passengers Service will be running from Sportsman’s Lodge to Oak Island starting December 26.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from the Sportsman’s Family to yours!
Lake of the Woods South Shore & Rainy River Fishing Report
It’s Heating Up!
Fishing has been crazy this past week! As the air and water temperature warms up, the walleyes have started moving out to 26-28 feet water. Water temps are ranging from 56 to 62 degrees and the forecast looks great this week! Our guides have been successful in the rocks, mud, and sand using 3/8 oz. jigs. The walleyes have been biting on gold jigs tipped with a shiner. Many guests are catching fish that are 17” to 19” along with many walleyes 27” or bigger! Pro tip of the week – make sure you are setting your hook, practice makes perfect! Guided trips available, come have some fun this summer.
Celebrate Dad in June!
Lodging & Guided Charter Packages starting at only $233*per person, gift cards available too! Purchase yours online or call 800-862-8602.
*Plus tax and based on double occupancy
Lake of the Woods Oak Island & the Northwest Angle Fishing Report
Great Walleye Bite
Depths 18’-20’ in the mud jigging a jig and minnow has been hot. Gold and orange have been good jig colors. Captain Steve and his crew boated over 100 fish along with some nice slot fish this week. Lots of sun in the forecast. Water temp currently 57 degrees.
Casting out flashy spoons and shad raps have been the hot ticket 6’-20’.Smallmouth Bass
Anglers are having the most success finding the bass casting using mallet spinners and shad raps deep 20’-30’.Muskie season opens June 15.
Baudette, MN – The Sportsman’s Lodge Annual Sturgeon Tournament had a full field of 60 boats and 179 anglers that battled it out over two days on Friday, May 3 and Saturday, May 4 for over $10,000 in cash and prizes. The 13th annual catch and release tournament was headquartered at the beautiful Sportsman’s Lodge and the fishing area was focused on 1.2 mile area right in front of the lodge on the Rainy River
Day one, the participants were rewarded with a beautiful calm morning. As the day progressed the weather turned a little more challenging as the clouds and rain moved in. The anglers stuck it out and finished day one with plenty of smiles. Day two started out with more Lake of The Woods sunshine and as the day went on the wind picked up and mother nature made the conditions a little tougher on the anglers. In true fishing tournament action the anglers braved the conditions and finished the day strong.
Tournament coordinator Bryan “Beef” Sathre said “Over 75 sturgeon were caught and released with two of those fish being previously tagged by DNR fisheries.” Tournament participants paid a $90 entry fee per person which included an incredible prime rib dinner as part of the tournament fee. The top two sturgeon of each day were awarded large cash prizes to match their big catch, with third place each day receiving a custom built fishing rod built by Sportsman’s guide, Ralph Christofferson. In addition, many more prizes were awarded for the biggest Sucker, Eel
Pout, under 18 years old, and biggest sturgeon caught by a female.
In 2018 for the first time in the history of the tournament, the participants that were involved in
the Sturgeon Tournament raised over $2,500 for the Lake of the Woods Take a Kid Fishing Program (TAKF). This year the Sturgeon Tournament and the generous participants raised over $4,000 for the TAKF event. Along, with the money raised, Two lifetime fishing licenses were donated for the upcoming TAKF event for two lucky youth. “We are very deeply appreciative
of the support the participants put forth to raise this money for such a great local program,” Gregg Hennum, Owner of Sportsman’s Lodge said. Lake of the Woods TAKF board members Ralph Christofferson, Jaime LaValla, Reed McFarlane and Diana Hennum were on hand to accept the donation. “This is amazing,” he said.
One the highlights from this past weekend was created by an 11 year girl who was fishing in the tournament with her dad. Earlier in the banquet on Saturday night, some prize drawings were held and an adult angler won a cool little princess rod in a mystery prize game. He gave it to this young girl and made her night.. As the night was winding down and the banquet was almost over, she approached the podium. The little girl mentioned to the emcee, she wanted to donate the rod back and to have it auctioned off so the money could go to TAKF and help other kids to be able to fish. The announcement of what this young angler just did, it was received with all the anglers in the room applauding her decision. The $19.99 rod was auctioned off for over $400 and the Lake Of The Woods TAKF benefited from this unselfish decision.
Sportsman’s Lodge would like to thank the participants, tournament coordinator and emcee extraordinaire Bryan “Beef” Sathre from Fathead Guide Service, guides, staff, and the gracious sponsors, Northwood’s Bait and Tackle, Log Cabin Bait, CLAM, Mission Tackle, Jim Joy from Sysco Foods, S.S. Bait Co, Striker, NLFX, Reeds Sporting Goods, LaValley Industries, Evinrude, Otter Outdoors, Rapala, Lake of the Woods Brewery, 13 Fishing and Northland Fishing Tackle. “Without all the help we couldn’t have made this such a huge success,” Sathre said. “Thank you to everyone who attended, It was a blast and we can’t wait for next year.” Next year’s tournament is scheduled for May 1 & 2, 2020. At this time the tournament is already sold out for next year but anyone interested in joining is always encouraged to join the waiting list by contacting Sportsman’s Lodge at 800-862-8602 or online at www.sportsmanslodges.com. If you can’t make it to the tournament, there is plenty of opportunities to get into the sturgeon action. Be sure to check out Sportsman’s Lodge.
First Place: 66 inch and 28 inch girth Gary Kullhem $2,345 Second Place: 63.5 inch and 24 inch girth Brian Stennes $1,005 cash Third Place: 60⅞ inch and 24 inch girth Mark Sage custom built Rod
First Place: 60 ¾ inch and 22 ½ inch girth Jake Willborg $2,345 Second Place: 60 ½ inch and 27 inch girth Brian Stennes $1,005 cash Third Place: 60 ½ inch and 23 inch girth Jake Willborg custom built Rod
We have made great progress! The river is opening quick! The river has an open water channel now within a couple miles from Birchdale Landing. It has opened up 10-11 miles since Thursday. ️
Another day of warm temps and a few more after to get the shore ice pushed away should be all we need until this landing opens is our best guess at this point. We are also seeing lots of bare ice spots between Birchdale and Frontier so this should break up fairly quickly this week too. We will be out checking again Tuesday afternoon. Stay tuned for updates! It’s almost time! ️
Birchdale Landing 3-24-2019
Franz Jevne Park 3 miles east of Birchdale Landing
Lodging Specials and Mardi Gras Party!
Give us a call to book your lodging and guided trips. Now through May 22, Lodging special starting at only $43* per person per night and our Annual Mardi Gras Party is this weekend! Saturday, March 30! Come have some fun! www.sportsmanslodges.com/spring
Mix of Walleyes, Saugers and Sizes
Lots of different size fish coming up through the holes. Depths between 22’-30’ have been good. A mix of dead sticking and jigging with a minnow and using vexilars is a good approach. Gold, glow and red tackle colors have been popular. Jigs, buckshots, forage minnows and chubby darters have been working good this week as well as a plain hook, a few split shots, and a bobber. Check out the pictures of the week.
We have 20-24 inches of ice right now in the areas we fish and travel. We have been experiencing a cool down this week. We are making ice! Did you know? Unlike many lakes in Minnesota, our ice fishing is extended until March 31 and our winter walleye season runs until April 14. Also due to our far north location, we typically have great ice right through March and many years into April.Trail Conditions
Trails are freshly groomed and regularly scheduled grooming is in progress. We have a good base of snow anywhere from 5”-14”, more in drifts. Black stakes mark the trails from the south shore of Lake of the Woods to Oak Island and NW Angle, south shore to Warroad and Warroad to Oak Island/NW Angle are all marked. For more information about the trails and latest on the land trails, check out Lake of the Wood’s Drifters and the Northwest Angle Edge Riders Facebook pages.
We do not maintain a plowed road ourselves as we supply the transportation for all of our trips to our houses via a groomed trail, but if you are interested in venturing out on your own, there are several roads in the area you can venture out on nearby the lodge. Adrian’s Road out of Four Mile Bay and Morris Point’s road out of Morris point are a few. Last report, this week roads are in good condition. For your safety, be sure to always check with the outfitter for current conditions before heading out and always be sure to stay on marked trails.Football & Fishing
Join us for a good time Feb 3 & 4. Fishing and lodging packages 2 nights/1 day $229-$267 per person or 2 nights/2 days $299-$337 per person. We will be having our annual Big Game Party Feb 3, during the Super Bowl featuring some great food and drink specials including our ½ price apps 3pm-6pm and door prizes. Come watch the game on our 12 TV’s. Lodging and fishing available, give us a call to reserve 800-862-8602.
(plus tax and based on double occupancy)
The walleye and sauger bite continues to be good. 16’-23’ of water has been hot just a few miles out from shore. We have 9-13 inches of ice in the areas we fish and travel at this time. Lots of good ice in the area within a few miles from shore at this time but as always if you are venturing out on your own, stay on marked trails. It is a big lake and not all areas freeze equally.
The ice continues to increase around Oak Island and the Northwest Angle but the trail has not been marked from the south shore to Oak Island yet. We need to build more ice before conditions are favorable across this 40 mile stretch. We will be checking ice again next week. No travel advised past marked trails. When Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge opens for the season, guests can access Oak Island via marked trails from Young’s Bay at the Northwest Angle to Oak Island until favorable ice conditions are available and the trail from the south shore to the island is marked and safe. Minimal snow on the land trails at this time. No grooming has begun yet. Not sure where to go? Book a guided trip. Lodging and ice fishing packages available starting at only $229* per person. Give us call 800-862-8602. It’s fishing time!
Ice Fishing starts at Sportsman’s Friday, Nov 30! It’s time! The cool fall has been great for ice making. The guides checked ice today and said based on what they found and the forecast ahead, Nov 30 will be our first day of the season for our day houses. Sleepers and Sportsman’s Oak Island will be another week or so after. They found 5”-7” of ice on the bay and 7-10” on the lake and nearly no snow cover in the areas we fish and travel. We should have no problems building a few more inches and starting with a safe 8-12” by Friday, especially with no snow cover. With no snow on the ice yet, which is great for ice making, it is slick so be sure to bring your cleats. As always, if you decide to venture out on your own, be sure to check with local resorts or outfitters before venturing out. Light jeeps, UTV’s, ATV’s only for awhile and keep the speed slow. The entire lake never freezes equally and the river is usually not ready for a few more weeks due to current. We only check and monitor the areas we fish and travel.
Public Ice Roads
We use a private access and do not maintain a public road. For ice road information, we suggest checking with Morris Point or Adrian’s.
Openings available! Give us a call to make your reservations! 800-862-8602 or click here.