Category Archives: Weekly Oak Island Fishing Report

Weekly Oak Island Fishing Report

Sportsman’s Fishing Report – 5/18/21

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Sportsman’s Lodge South End Fishing Report

Incredible Weather for Opener this Year
Besides the fishing this weekend, the #2 topic this opener was definitely the weather. Have we ever had it this nice on opening day? Light wind and 70’s, absolutely beautiful. 

Well, I am sure we have but it must have been quite a while ago.  Nonetheless, it was a great day to be outdoors. The fishing was pretty good too. Some did better than others, some were hoping for more of a walleye chop on Saturday but many I talked to, had a steady bite, and caught a mix of sizes between 12”-20”. Check out some of the fish the Berkner group reeled in with Captain Mike Marquardt.

We always love to see your pictures. Text 218-395-0042 or email [email protected] anytime. Maybe you will find yourself in the next fishing report or on our website. Facebook has recently done an update that is not allowing us to see photos we are tagged in so if you can text, email, or Facebook message (that seems to be working fine) for now, we would appreciate it.

A good bite was had anchored in shallow 7’-15’ along shorelines using a 3/8-1/4 oz jig tipped with a shiner or chub this weekend. Pink, red, glow in the dark, and gold were good colors. Water temperature is hovering in the mid 50s.

Fins Rooftop bar is open for the summer!
Stop in and enjoy the view. www.mysportsmans.com

Oak Island Fishing Report

Decent bite
Another great opener. 8’-18’ along shorelines and points produced some nice walleyes this weekend. Anchored using a gold, green or glow-in-the-dark jig tipped with a shiner or chub worked well. Water temp is in the mid 50’s, a little warmer than an average opening weekend. Walleye season is open! Time to get out and enjoy the weather.

Pike fishing continues to be good in the bays casting artificial baits or using smelt or large sucker minnows on a hook and a bobber.

Come see us this Summer by Boat or Air
As of now, the Canadian Border is still closed but we have options for you to get here. Click here to learn more.

Sportsman’s Fishing Report – 5/14/21

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Sportsman’s Rainy River Lodge

It’s Opener Eve!!
Feels like Christmas! The day is finally here and the weather looks pretty favorable too. It’s time to finish up the boat work, string the last rods and enjoy the weekend.

Here on Lake of the Woods, the opener approach is pretty straightforward. Tie up a 3/8-1/2 oz gold or pink jig, tip it with a chub or shiner, and head to the shorelines and shallows for some jigging. 7’-16’ is a good start, anchoring or drift/slow troll. After you get done with walleye fishing try some trophy pike fishing. Lake of the Woods is known to have many trophy-sized pike in its waters. Dead bait in the bays is a great approach. You can also get in one more day of sturgeon fishing. Sturgeon catch and release is open through Saturday before taking a pause for six weeks.

Minnows are in the tank!

The bar and grill are open. Guided charter trips are full for Saturday and Sunday but we have openings next week and throughout the summer. Give us a call at 800-862-8602. Dock slips are all by reservation only. Please check with the front desk for availability. Good luck fishing and we look forward to seeing you!

The 15th Annual Sportsman’s Sturgeon Classic Tournament was held at the lodge this past weekend, May 7 & 8. 200 anglers and 60 boats enjoyed another year of beautiful spring weather and lake sturgeon fishing in a 1.2 mile stretch out in front of the lodge on the Rainy River.

Each day the participant with the longest measured sturgeon went home with $3,000 in cash, 2nd place $1,365 in cash, and the 3rd place winner a custom rod. Other priz-es were given away for the largest sturgeon caught by a youth, woman, largest eel-pout, largest sucker, and as well as many other door prizes.

Over a hundred sturgeon were caught and an unusual catch of a channel catfish over the two days. $12,000 plus in cash and prizes were awarded over the two-day catch and release event. Tournament participants also raised nearly $4,000 for the Lake of the Woods Take a Kid Fishing program. The monies will be used for lifetime fishing licenses that will be awarded at the event this year in June and for program expenses to continue to teach kids the lifelong sport of fishing. Many thanks to the gracious par-ticipants and sponsors who took part in this event. Your donation will make a big im-pact on many kids’ lives for a lifetime. Thank you!

This year the event was sponsored by Northwoods Bait & Tackle, RS Nets USA, Fat-head Guide Service and Promotions, Acme Tools of Bemidji, Lake of the Woods Brewing Company, Log Cabin Bait & Tackle, Striker, Sunnyhill Distributors, D & D Beverage, Northwest Beverage, LaValley Industries, Upper Lakes Foods, Sports-man’s Lodge, and Ralph Christofferson Custom Rods. Additional lifetime licenses and money towards lifetime licenses were given by Acme Tools of Bemidji/Aaron Schmitz, Rodger and Kim Haugtvedt in memory of their son Justin, an anonymous donor, Two Rivers Sportsman’s Club of Karlstad, Hibbing Chrysler and, by Spencer Christianson in memory of his Dad, Scott Christianson.

We want to thank all of the participants, staff, guides, tournament co-director, and em-cee Bryan “Beef” Sathre and sponsors who once again made this year another huge success. Thank you!.

Congratulations to the 2021 winners!

Day 1
First Place-Dan Sheedy 63 1/4 x 21 inches
Second Place-Aaron Schmitz 61 1/2 x 23 1/2 inches
Third Place-Curt Howe 61 1/4 x 27 1/4 inches

Day 2
First Place-Chuck Hauble 65 3/4 x 29 1/4 inches
Second Place-Ben Cumber 65 3/8 x 30 1/4 inches
Third Place-Patrick Dunn 62 1/2 x 24 1/2 inches
Powder Puff -Hanna Hastings 57 1/2 x 25 1/2 inches
Largest Sucker- Brandon Dunn 22 inches
Largest Eelpout -K. Johnson 17 inches

We are looking forward to the 16th Annual scheduled for May 6 & 7, 2022. The tournament is full for 2022 but, we are taking a waiting list. To be added to the waiting list, contact us at [email protected] or 800-862-8602.

Sturgeon fishing continues to be very popular on the Rainy River. The catch and re-lease season runs Oct 1- April 23 and May 8-15, the keep one season runs April 24-May 7 and July 1-Sept 30.  If you are interested in learning more about sturgeon fishing click here.

Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge

Welcome Back!
We are glad to have you back for another season. We open at 2pm today and open at 11:30 tomorrow through May 17. Food, drinks, bait, gas, lodging is available. We will open up for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and drinks starting May 18 for the summer. Good luck fishing and we look forward to seeing you! Visit our website for menus, hours, and more www.mysportsmans.com

Shorelines and points are going to be hot spots for walleye. A 3/8 oz jig tipped with a minnow is all you need. An-chored or slow drift/troll. After walleye fishing try your luck at smallmouth and pike. Both species are very abun-dant in Lake of the Woods. We have some openings next week. Give us a call at 800-772-8411. Good luck fishing!

By Boat or Air
As of now, the Canadian Border is still closed but we have options for you to get here. Click here to learn more.

Sportsman’s Fishing Report – 4/28/21

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Sportsman’s Rainy River

Warming Up
The weather is warming up which brings about more opportunities to get out and do some pike and sturgeon fishing.

Sturgeon harvest season runs through May 7 then back to catch and release for one more week, May 8-15 before closing for 6 weeks. Deep holes in the river bed are excellent places to find these bottom feeders roaming. Anchor and set up a 3-4 oz no roll sinker, 18” snell 60lb with a 5/0 hook tipped with a pile of worms and even a shiner or two on the bottom. Anglers have been catching quite a few 50”-70” lately. Our 15th Annual Sturgeon Tournament is coming up next weekend. Stay tuned to Facebook for leader board updates and click here to learn more about the tournament. Check out these Sturgeon fishing tips from the Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau.

Trophy pike is everywhere in Lake of the Woods. We have endless bays to try. Dead baits, spinnerbait, spoon, and crankbaits are all good options to throw their way. Pike season is open all year on Lake of the Woods. Check out this video for some Pike fishing tips:

Spring Specials continue through May 26.
Click here to take advantage of our spring deals and contact us today to book your trip.

Stay 6 nights and get the 7th Night FREE this Summer
Check out all of our options.

Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge

We are looking forward to opening up walleye opener weekend. Kick-off the summer with a trip to the island in May. The walleye opener is May 15. We open on May 14.

By Boat or Air
As of now, the Canadian Border is still closed but we have options for you to get here. Click here to learn more.

Give us a call to plan your summer fun at 800-772-8411 www.oakislandlodge.com

Sportsman’s Fishing Report – 4/22/21

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Sportsman’s Lodge

No more Ice

The lake is free of ice and the passenger service boats have started to run trips from the lodge on the south shore to the Northwest Angle.

Anglers have been catching some nice pike and sturgeon lately. Check out these pictures and video. We have guides available and dock slips if you want to bring your own boat.

Thanks to Jake and the crew from Adventure Travel Pros for capturing some of the action this week.

If you are looking to get into some sturgeon. Here are some tips. Anchor near or in deep holes with some current in the river or bays and use an 18” snell, 60lb test, 2-3 ounces no roll sinker, and a 4/0 or 5/0 hook tipped with a gob of worms and a shiner. Sometimes it is a waiting game but once they hit, be ready!! For pike, bays are the perfect place to find them this time of year. Dead baits, spinnerbait, spoon, or crankbait are all going to be good options. We have miles and miles of area to explore.

Spring Specials continue through May 26.
Click here to take advantage of our spring deals and contact us today to book your trip. Summer on your mind? Our villas are the perfect place for the whole family. Check out our website for all of our summer offerings.

-Walleye Opener is May 15
-Sturgeon Catch & Release season runs through April 23 and May 8-15.
-Sturgeon harvest season runs April 24-May 7 and July 1 – Sept 30.
-The Sturgeon season is entirely closed May 16-June 30.
-Pike season is open all year.

Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge

It’s beginning to look a lot more like spring around the islands. We are seeing more boats moving around the area. It’s that time of year, we are busy cleaning and doing maintenance to get ready for summer. We look forward to opening up on the walleye opener weekend, May 14. Do you have your reservations in yet? We look forward to seeing you this summer!

By Boat or Air
As of now, the Canadian Border is still closed but we have options for you to get here.
Click here to learn more.

Give us a call to plan your summer fun at 800-772-8411 www.oakislandlodge.com.

Sportsman’s Fishing Report – 4/15/21

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Sportsman’s Rainy River

It’s Sturgeon & Pike time!
It’s that time of year. While the walleye season closes for a few weeks, it’s time to get out and get into some monster sturgeon and aggressive pike action. Head out to the river bed holes and bays. For sturgeon, anchor near or in deep holes with some current in the river or bays and use an 18” snell, 60lb test, 2-3 ounces no roll sinker, and a 4/0 or 5/0 hook tipped with a gob of worms and a shiner. For pike, bays are the perfect place to find them this time of year. Dead baits, spinnerbait, spoon, or crankbait are all going to be good options.

Spring Specials continue through May 26.
Click here to take advantage of our spring deals and contact us today to book your trip. Summer on your mind? Our villas are the perfect place for the whole family. Check out our website for all of our summer offerings.

-Walleye Opener is May 15
-Sturgeon Catch & Release season runs through April 23 and May 8-15.
-Sturgeon “keep” season runs April 24-May 7 and July 1 – Sept 30.
-The Sturgeon season is entirely closed May 16-June 30.
-Pike season is open all year.

Oak Island Fishing Report

More Water in our View
The bay in front of the lodge is now wide open and there is open water between the island to Young’s Bay at the Northwest Angle.

To the south, ice is still as far as the eye can see but it shouldn’t be too long. We are looking forward to opening up for the walleye opener weekend, May 14-16 for the season. If you haven’t made your soft water season reservations yet, give us a call at 800-772-8411 and be sure to ask about our spring deals going on in May.

Now Hiring for the season
Looking for a change of pace or know someone who is? Live where you love to play! We have seasonal and long-term openings for internships, housekeeping, cook, server, bartender, and front desk at our 3 locations. Visit our website to apply today. www.sportsmanslodges.com/apply

Sportsman’s River Update & Fishing Report – 4/1/21

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Sportsman’s Lodge

Few more weeks of walleye season
We are heading into the last few weeks of walleye season before it closes for a month. The Rainy River is open now and we have open water just past Pine Island as well.  Over 40 miles of fishable waters are available for anglers and 5 public boat ramps are open.

The bite heated up over the weekend. Anglers caught some nice walleye and sturgeon. The wind kicked up the last few days and our temps hit us like a yo-yo with highs in the 40’s to 60’s to back down to highs in the 20’s making the catching a little more challenging. I guess a little reminder from Mom Nature, it is still very early in the soft water season. The good news is the weather looks like it is on a warming trend starting today and the wind is looking better too.  Should be a nice weekend to get out and do some fishing. The water temp has been in the mid 30’s the last few days down from the upper 30’s. The big walleyes are roaming. Anchored or drifting with a bright-colored 3/8-1/2 oz jig and a minnow is working well along shorelines 13’-22’. The water level remains low.

More Species
It is not just about the walleye this time of year. Monster sturgeon are everywhere and as more bays are opening up, that means pike fishing is about to get fired up too. For sturgeon, a good approach is to anchor near or in deep holes with some current in the River or Four Mile Bay and use an 18” snell, 60lb test, 2-3 ounces no roll sinker and a 4/0 or 5/0 hook tipped with a gob of worms and a shiner. Once you hook in, be ready! Some of these monsters take up to a few hours to reel in. It can be quite an adventure! The Daly group visited us this week and said the morning and early afternoon was slow but boy was it worth the wait. They caught 14 sturgeon between 2pm-6:30pm. Bait up they said, with lots of crawlers using a #5 hook  and a frozen shiner worked great for them. They also suggested eating at the lodge, tipping your server and having fun! 🙂 Thanks for coming guys! Be sure to check out some of their pictures in our slide show. For pike, casting spoons and jerk baits in shallow bays with structure should get you into some action.

Book your trip! Lodging and guided trips are available. Our bar, restaurant, pool, hot tub, and game room are open too. We have some fantastic spring deals.   Contact us today for availability and click here for our current restaurant and bar hours. Please note, we will be closed on Easter Sunday.

Fishing Seasons
Walleye open through April 14, reopening May 15
Northern Pike never closes. Open year-round.
Lake Sturgeon catch and release now through April 23, keep one season April 24-May 7, catch and release May 8-15, closed May 16-June 30, keep one season July 1-Sept 30, catch and release Oct 1-April 23. For more information about seasons, limits and licenses click here.

Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge & Eagle Ridge

The landscape around the islands is still pretty icy but it won’t be long. Contact us today to book your summer trip! Our lodging, restaurant, and bar are currently closed but we are still here to take your call at 800-772-8411. We open back up in May. Check out our spring deals!

Sportsman’s Fishing Report & Ice Conditions Update – 3/5/21

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Sportsman’s Lodge Rainy River

That’s a wrap!

Thank you, guests, staff, and fans for making it another great season! Our ice fishing season is coming to a close. We moved fishing areas and accesses this week but have decided with the warm weather in the forecast it is time to call it a year. Friday will be our last day for rentals.  A few accesses remain open on the south shore but be sure to call ahead to the resort or outfitter of your choice for updates before venturing out as conditions are changing. 

Our bar and restaurant remain open through Sunday morning 6 am – 10 am and 11 am – 10 pm for food and drinks until 11 pm. Watch our website and Facebook page for updated hours for after the weekend coming soon.

Lodging remains open and spring soft water action is just around the corner. Give us a call to reserve your trip!  We have some great spring deals 800-862-8602.

Sportsman’s Oak Island

Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge is done for the year too. The restaurant and bar remain open through Sunday morning. 

Thank you! Bring on spring!

Sportsman’s Fishing Report & Ice Conditions Update – 3/5/21

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Sportsman’s Lodge

Ice Fishing Continues

Currently, we still have 36 inches of ice and 1-5 inches of snow in the areas we fish and travel. We plan to continue fishing up on the reefs through the weekend and look at moving in closer to the south shore depending on how the weather shakes out and the future forecast looks. Right now it continues to look like we are going to freeze every night and cold weather is back in the forecast next week. That will help! We continue to monitor ice conditions daily and safety is #1.

The bite has been decent, lots of small fish but anglers have been sorting through finding some good eaters and an occasional lunker. Orange, pink, gold small jigs and spoons, and plain hooks tipped with a minnow in 26’-32’ has produced the best. The snowmobile trail to Oak Island was groomed yesterday and hopefully grooming to Warroad in the early morning this weekend depending on conditions. The overall snow cover continues to lessen but the snow-packed trails still have snow for travel.

Heading out on your own?
Ice conditions vary on this big pond, always a good idea to use an ice road or trail maintained and marked by a trusted local outfitter or resort, and always check with the maintainer for any changes before heading out. We do not maintain a public ice road, although there are several in the area. We provide all of the transportation to our rentals via track vehicle.

Give us a call for last-minute trips 800-862-8602.
We have some great midweek deals.

Oak Island

We have houses strung out in the structure and mud 22’-31’. The bite has been finicky but the guides continue to work hard to get you the best experience. Hopefully the sunshine this weekend will get the fish fired up for a meal. Buckshots, gold and pink jigs, and small spoons tipped with a minnow have been working the best. We have 5-8 inches of snow and 22”-28” inches of ice in the areas we fish and travel.

Area resorts are working hard to keep the ice road open to the Northwest Angle and Islands as long as safe and possible. At least through the next week and maybe longer depending on how it goes. The trail across the lake was groomed today and we expect will be open longer than the road. Lake of the Woods passenger service is available. If you are traveling soon, don’t hesitate to give us a call with any questions or for any updates. Flights from Baudette and surrounding areas are available too.

Good luck fishing!

Sportsman’s Fishing Report & Ice Conditions Update – 2/26/21

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Sportsman’s Lodge

Days are getting longer! March is around the corner!

Check out the pictures of the week.

Anglers are finding walleyes and saugers in 26’-32’ using Glo Shots, green and orange Buckshots, gold and orange jigs, and pink hooks tipped with a chub minnow.  Some anglers having success with a minnow head, some with a full minnow, and some prefer 2. Never hurts to try something new.. Anglers are still seeing quite a few suspended fish so watch electronics for those.  No vexilar? Give us a call ahead of time. We have a few to rent.  Best approach to catch suspsended fish is to fish the bottom and reel up to them once you see them on the electronics. We have found you will catch more fish overall doing this rather than sitting off the bottom several feet and moving down and up.  A mix of dead sticking and vertical jigging is best. Some anglers do the best sitting about 4 inches off bottom and others prefer to hug the bottom. If one approach isn’t working for you, give the other a try. You never know what might get you hooked on dinner!  We have 36 inches of ice and 1-5 inches of snow in the areas we fish and travel. More snow the farther north you go.    

Walleye season is open until April 14 on Lake of the Woods and we have ice fishing trips available until March 31. Come see us! Lodging and fishing packages starting at only $250 per person.
*plus tax and based on double occupancy

Trail Report
Trails are groomed and staked. There are some bare ice spots on the south side of the lake so staying on the trail will give you the best and safest riding. The Northwest Angle Edge Riders rally is this weekend. Check it out!

For more information abou thte trails, check out these links. 

South Shore Lake of the Woods
Northwest Angle Lake of the Woods
Lake of the Woods Trail Information

Sportsman’s Oak Island Lodge

The best bite has been in 25’-31’ right now using Buckshots, Glo Shot spoons, pink and red jigs tipped with a chub minnow. Morning and evenings have been the most favorable for catching walleyes and saugers. A mix of vertical jigging and dead sticking has been the best approach.

Ice Conditions
We have 22-28 inches of ice in the areas we fish and travel.

Trail Report
Grooming continues but we have lost some snow due to the warmer temps.
Click on the links for the latest report. The annual Northwest Angle Edge Riders snowmobile rally is this weekend.   Check out their page for all the info and stop by the lodge for food, drinks, and gas. 

Northwest Angle Lake of the Woods
South Shore Lake of the Woods
Lake of the Woods Trail Information

Ice Road, Fly or Take the Passenger Service to reach us this Winter
Click here for more information on all of the options. 

Sportsman’s Fishing Report & Ice Conditions Update – 2/18/21

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Sportsman’s Lodge Rainy River

It’s warming up!

Finally! A break in the weather. Looks like we are going to stay above the donut for awhile. You still have time to come wet a line. Remember we ice fish until late March on Lake of the Woods. This week the best depth has been in 25-32 feet of water. Pink, lime green, and gold have been good colors. Electronics help especially to lure in the suspended fish. 3/8 oz jigs and spoons are good choices tipped with a minnow or even part of a minnow.

We have about 30 inches of ice and about a foot of snow. The guides are ready to take you out and show you a good time.

Trail Report
Trails are groomed and staked. For more information check out these links.
South Shore Lake of the Woods
Northwest Angle Lake of the Woods

Openings are available, give us a call at 800-862-8602 or click here to contact us online.

Looking for a place to park your RV for the summer?
Look no further than the new Bur Oak Campground just footsteps away from Sportsman’s Lodge.

Oak Island

Walleye, Sauger, Perch, Pike
You never know what might come up your hole next. The bite has mostly been walleye and sauger but perch and pike has been common too. Along with eater size and throwbacks being caught, we are seeing some big 19.5”+ walleyes roam the mud flats lately.  Deep mud, 28’-32’has been a good depth using small 1/16 oz jigs tipped with plastic that mimics bugs.  Do some vertical jigging and dead sticking for your best results. We currently have 20-24”+ of ice and a foot of snow where we fish and travel.

4 ways to get to us this winter!

Fly, let us pick you up (at Sportsman’s Lodge), Take the Ice Road from Warroad or Ride the snowmobile trails. Click here to learn more and on the links below for the latest trail report.

South Shore Lake of the Woods
Northwest Angle Lake of the Woods