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Central MN (December 22nd, 2023)

What a week for not making a whole lot of new ice.  Central to North Central Minnesota ice making is fairly stagnant with the exception of the recent short cold snap (Monday), a little more was added to the low thickness amounts from last week.  So yes, be cautious if you are going out. 

Regardless, if you can get out to any shallow weed flat near deeper water, you will find panfish, pike, and if you’re into the newest (well not really) craze—largemouth bass through the ice then your good to go!  Just like in the summer, bass love some flash, dance, and size.  So, pick out some flashy, dancing glide baits or spoons and go to work working large areas of the weed flats.  Look for “holes in the weeds” the size of a fish house or two—that’s where you will find “bunches” of Bass.  After you have caught the active fish, set a tip up with a minnow on it and you will catch a bunch more from the same spot while you’re searching again.  Keep this system rolling until your tired of catching fish!  It works the same for pike and walleye as well. 

Crappies and ‘gills remain using these shallow weedy environments for half the winter.  Ice jigs tipped with spikes or waxies will catch the fish—it’s not rocket science, so don’t make it into that! 

Look for walleyes cruising the deeper weed breaks throughout the day.  These depth ranges are between 13-20ft.  Tip your jigging spoons etc with a small minnow head (from a crappie minnow) and vary your cadence patterns to determine what “they” want that day!  Lotsa Fish! Lotsa Fun!

Capt. Josh
Minnesota Fishing Guide Service
320-291-0708, 218-732-9919