Lake Winnie Ice Fishing Report for January 2, 2013

The fishing on Winnie has been very good this week. Walleye fishing continues to be strong. The shore drops from 12 to 18 feet are where most walleyes are found. The main lake bars and humps, also are good, with the 14 to 18 foot range being a good place to focus. Jigging spoons and minnow heads are the best tools to get the walleyes' attention. Walleye have been active from 1 pm till dark.

If we get sunny days, the perch bite well. On the cludy days, not as well. The west side perch bite is from 8 to 12 feet deep. The main lake perch bite is 18 to 25 feet. Small minnows or waxies have been the main tool used to put good perch on the ice.

Pike are still crazy! Tip-up fisherman have been catching good pike in the same locations where the perch are biting. Set your tip-ups 3 feet off the bottom with 4 to 6 inch suckers or big shiners. Make sure to bring your tip-ups.

Ice conditions are generally good. Most ice is 13 to 15 inches. Very little snow cover has helped make good ice this season. As always, the ice moves around a bit, creating heaves and such. You will need to check in with the resort you are going out of to verify safest travel paths and heave locations. The south end has a crack east to west from about Duck Pass to Little Stoney. Then, the Highbanks area out from north humps toward mallard point. The west side crack as of now has healed and there is a safe crossing. At the river, Tamarac Bay has been good for travel with 12 inches of ice. Highbanks has a road out three miles to the north humps and travel is safe. Beckers and McArdles are running out by the River Bar. Dixon Lake is going out of Third River. Denny's and Nodak Lodge has roads out to Horseshoe and Bena Bar. Tamarac has a road throughout the bay. Again check in with the resort you are going out of to be sure of safety.

The fishing is getting good! See you on the ice!

Pat Rooney

Lake Winnie Ice Fishing Report for December 26, 2012

Hello, from Big Winnie. Hope everyone had a great Christmas! The fishing has been good the last few days for jumbo perch. The cold snap seems to have gotten those big perch a bit more active. Tamarac Bay in 12 feet of water has been good. The east side stump field has been going well for perch, too. On Bena Bar, the perch are plentiful but a lot of sorting to find the bigger perch. The west side is going well, in shallow water off the river mouth. 6 to 8 feet is the place to be to find the perch in that location.

Walleyes are still biting but have slowed a bit with the recent cold snap. Bena Bar has been good the east side shore drop, Horseshoe south side, all have put fish on the ice. Cloudy days from noon on or sunny days from 3 till dark are best. Jigging spoons and minnow heads are the ideal tactic right now to get those walleyes' attention.

The northern pike have been crazy!!! Tip-up fisherman in the 13 to 18 foot range toward the top of the structure, 1 to 3 feet off the bottom with 4 to 6 in sucker minnows. The pike fishing is the hottest we've seen it in quite some time.

Ice is still varying from 11 to 13 inches, with the south west side still at 8 inches. Check into the resort you are going out of for road directions. You can access in light trucks in most spots. Half tons or less, for certain. Again, you will get good directions from all the resorts around the lake.

Pat Rooney

Lake Winnie Ice Fishing Report for December 19, 2012

Hello, from Big Winnie. The recent temperatures have slowed the rate at which we have been making ice the last few days. Reports have varied from one area - off the Townsite SW at about 6 inches. The majority of the lake is 9 to 12 inches right now, which is a good start. We do have a couple of heaves. Check in with the resort from which you will access, before heading out. Better to be safe than sorry.

The walleye bite is good on the bars and on the sharper shoreline drops from the tops at 15 feet down to 25 feet. Buckshot rattle spoons in gold or chartreuse green have been good with a minnow head. The walleye bite will only get better in the coming weeks.

The perch bite has been rather spotty. Some days the deep bite in 25 feet or more is working. The next day you get them in 6 feet of water. Takes a little extra effort to find them right now. Like the walleye fishing, the perch bite will continue to improve and consistently good perch fishing will be hitting any day now.

Pike are very active! Tip-up fishermen are getting them in 10 to 20 feet, a few feet off the bottom.

We have about 4 inches of snow on the ice at this time.

See you on the lake!

Pat Rooney

Lake Winnie Ice Fishing Report for December 12, 2012

Hello, from Big Winnie! We are making ice!!!

Tamarac bay has 8 inches out to the tip of the point. East side south to Highbanks, all the way around to Little Stoney has 8 inches of ice. Going north on Bena Bar to Little Musky has 8 inches. The west side has 8 inches out to about 9 feet of water. From The Townsite access westward, to outside of the Mississippi river inlet, then back north to Sugar Lake opening, there was open water a couple of days ago - has NOW froze over. THE ICE IS THIN. Be extra cautious in this area. There are only about three inches in that area.

Check into the any of the resorts you are staying at for directions around this area. Water starting to clear up at the Mississippi River mouth and also Third River mouth. Shore line areas east and north in 4 to 8 feet of water is a bit dirty. Fishing is getting under way.

Northern pike spear fisherman are reporting good catches with fish up to 15 lbs. River mouth areas the best. Some shorelines are working as well out to 8 feet of water.

The perch bite is spotty, some shallow fish being caught by the river mouths, also. Main lake bars are doing ok with sorting of perch by sizes. Shoreline drops in the 15 to 23 foot range working also with some sorting.

The walleye bite is good with sharp drops from 12 to 23 feet being the best. Early and later in the day are best or darker cloudy days.

We have about 2 inches of snow on the lake. Travel with ATVs is ok in most areas. See you on the lake.

Pat Rooney

Lake Winnie Ice Fishing Report for December 6, 2012

Exciting new to share! The big lake is now completely iced over! We have 5 to six inches on most of the lake. The west side froze up last and is at 3.5 inches. We have no snow and quite a few cracks as we froze up on a hard wind. You will certainly need ice cleats to move around safely on the surface of the ice when fishing. Tamarac Bay is at 5 to 6 inches. Third River is at 5 inches thick. Up on Third River, groups have had some good spearing going on. The east side from south shore thru Moxey is 5 to 6 inches thick.

The main spot to watch, for safety, is just south of the West Winnie campground up to Ravens Point. That froze up last at 3.5 inches and still a bit dangerous for more than foot travel.

Call into your resort or local bait shop for a report before you come up. Great ice fishing for walleyes and perch will be getting under way very soon.

See you on the ice!

Pat Rooney

Lake Winnie Ice Fishing Report for November 29, 2012

Hello, from Big Winnie! We are making ice! Third River area has 3 to 4 inches. Tamarac Bay has about the same ice thickness. Shore ice on the east and south side of Winnie is at about three inches thick. The west side had open water Wednesday, in a two-mile strip running north. Cold temps should freeze that up quickly.

The spearfishermen should be ready to spear by this weekend. Call ahead to the resorts or bait shops in the area for an up-to-the-minute report before you come up. The next couple of weeks is the time to get your augers tuned and blades sharpened.

Ice fishing is just around the corner and we're all looking forward to the season and seeing many of you again.

See you on the ice!

Pat Rooney

Lake Winnie Fishing & Hunting Report for October 19, 2012

The fishing on Lake Winnie has been excellent. The fall bite, with cooler water temps, have the walleyes biting softer/gentler. But they are biting very well! Look to the remaining weeds in the 5 to 8 foot range. Perch and Walleye are in there together. Light jigs in the 1/8 or 1/16 oz with a fathead or a small shiner are working well. Pitch it out do slow pulls forward, then when it gets heavy set the hook.

Grouse hunters are doing well around this area. Most leaves have fallen and it is easy to see in the woods. Most hunters are reporting flushes on every trip.

Duck hunters are doing quite well, also. Northern divers and some big mallards are showing up now. Most hunters that are putting the time in are getting their ducks with no problem. Tamarac Point, Raven Creek and Third River are all good bets for duck hunting on Lake Winnie right now.

Deer hunters should be seeing some rubs and a few scrapes by now. If you're deer stand is not yet up, you should complete that project before the end of this weekend and then try to stay out of the woods you intend to hunt.

Pat Rooney

Lake Winnie Fishing & Hunting Report for October 3, 2012

Hello, from Big Winnie. The fall walleye bite is still going strong with fish being caught shallow in the inside weed edge. 5 to 6 feet of water with jigs and minnows moving at 1.0 to 1.4mph - speed cannot be emphasized enough. Quickly cover water when you hit a pod, stay there a few passes - you will have your fish quickly. All sizes are in there from 10 inches to 27 inches. If too many boats, move out a bit, tie on spinners with a 1.4 oz weight and troll just outside those same weed beds for more fish.

Pike are eating well now. Bigger crank baits or spoons are still working well.

Perch are scattered but easy to catch, just cover a bit of water.

Grouse hunters are still reporting seeing more birds than then they can shoot. Leaves are still on the trees.

See you on the water!

Pat Rooney

Lake Winnie Fishing & Hunting Report for September 27, 2012

The walleye bite is is going pretty well right now. The fall walleye bite is going shallow or deep. Bar fishing is ok, as are the humps. Move around till you have some action, work the area with minnows and jigs, or a rig and minnow or a crawler. 12 to 28 feet on the deep structure and 4 to 8 in the shallow weed lines. Look for the weeds that are still green.

Pike fishing is ok with trolled cranks or spoons.

Perch bite has gotten a little spotty as of late. Areas of perch are biting good, but a lot of sorting needs to be done.

Leaves are starting to fall and grouse hunters are reporting a fair amount of birds, but very few have been shot. Ducks and geese are getting shot around the lake. Third river and Tamarac point being the best for waterfowlers.

Lots of things to do this time of the year. Get out and fish and hunt the same day. Sounds perfect, doesn't it?


Pat Rooney

Lake Winnie Fishing & Hunting Report for September 19, 2012

Hello, from Big Winnie!

With water temps in the low 60 degree range the fall bite is hot and heavy! Shallow weed fishing is good in the 4 to 7 foot range with jigs and a minnow. You need to be close to the weed lines - important. Play the wind and get along the wind direction or slightly into the wind. The main lake bars are also working well with rigs and a crawler or bigger jigs - vertical fishing with bigger minnows. 15 to 28 feet has been the best.

Pike have been active but tight into the weeds. You can cast or troll just outside to get them to the boat.

Perch have been caught along with the walleye. Sort out some to keep, as there will be plenty to choose from.

In addition to terrific fishing right now, hunting time is here. Early grouse hunters are getting a few. They are harder to see with the leaves on the trees yet. Bear hunters have had good hunting with several in the 200 to 300 lb range being brought in here.

Early bow hunting for deer has some archers seeing animals, though not close enough to shoot yet.

Ducks have been spotted on this lake in several areas: Third River, Raven Creek and Cutfoot have good numbers of ducks right now. Geese have been scarce.

See you on the lake, or maybe the woods! Love this time of the year.

Pat Rooney

P.S. Did I mention that fishing is really HOT right now?

Denny’s Resort – Lake Winnibigoshish • 15017 16th Ave. NE • P.O. Box 8 • Bena, Minnesota 56626
(218) 665 - 2222