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Leech Lake Area, MN (December 26th, 2023)

Another round of wind, rain, and unseasonably warm weather continues to limit the ice-making process in most areas. Heading into January, you’ll still find pockets of open water on some big lakes and marginal ice conditions across the southern half of Minnesota.

Leech Lake: Activity throughout the lake remains limited due to varying ice conditions, especially after last weekend’s weather. There is some foot traffic and limited ATV use in a few areas of the lake, but extreme caution is advised and you’ll do best working through a resort. There’s still open water on big parts of the lake, including Walker Bay, and where ice does exist, it varies a lot from 4 to 10 inches with some cracks and soft spots. 

Surrounding Area Lakes: Despite these less-than-favorable ice-making conditions, anglers are getting out to some extent in most areas. Obviously, you’ll find better ice thickness the farther north you go, and in some locations or on select lakes, ATVs have started to be used, but that option is limited. Walking out remains the best, and sometimes the only option. Use caution and check the ice as you venture out.

Walleye action continues to be best during low-light periods, with many anglers attributing the clear ice and limited snow cover to an overall lack of walleye-catching success. Crappies are being found suspended over deep water, but still relating to mid-depth weeds, too.

Leech Lake Tourism
www.leechlake.org