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Jarrid Houston's fishing report

More Winter Ahead

Deep snow and slush have added to challenging ice angling this week.

By: Jarrid Houston | February 22, 2018

First off, I would like to thank all our readers that shared kind words for this weekly column at the Duluth Boat, Sports, Travel & RV Show. We are ecstatic about the positivity! Okay, now the report…

For those that are looking forward to winter ending, hang on, we have more ahead. Deep snow and slush have added to challenging ice angling this week. Travel on area waters has been difficult. Plowed roads at many access locations and onto lakes have deep snow drifts and select ice roads have slush. Getting your vehicle stuck is probable, so make smart decisions. It is important to keep a shovel and tow rope with you just in case. Also, it is smart to have a charged cell phone and notify someone of your plans before heading off. For those that may have hard-sided houses on area waters, hopefully you have been checking on them. Some select lake resorts are encouraging getting your shacks off the lakes. For fishing updates, we are in the midst of the "dog days" of winter. Fishing this last week has been good at times and slow - similar to the roller coaster weather. I think we are all looking forward to spring, but first, we need to endure a little more winter. Yes, that means snow, sleet, ice and otherwise. 

Lake Superior angling has gotten back to "somewhat" normality. Meaning the little ice angling season we experienced near the Twin Ports is history. Most are looking forward to open water trolling for salmon. In the meantime, some anglers are casting North Shore spots and finding minimal success with the very occasional Coho. The recent snow is actually a good thing for our upcoming stream fishing season, as spring run-off can often dictate fish behavior near tributaries. Ice angling the Gitch continues only in the WI areas of Chequamegon Bay and parts of the Apostle Islands. Anglers are reporting mixed success, but mostly on the slow side. Set lines and jigging tactics are equally working.

The St. Louis River also has been on the slower side. There certainly has been a halt in traffic and we are not seeing a lot of anglers on the river. Make sure to check regulations as St. Louis River sport fishing season ends March 1st, 2018. 


Inland lake fishing has the usual schedule of ice derbies happening on local waters. Also, make sure to stay in tune with regulations as the annual fishing calendar has or is ending depending on where you fish. Meaning, everyone needs to renew their annual fishing licenses. Panfish will be the most sought out species heading into March. Look to areas of deeper basins for suspended crappies and sunfish. Mid-depth vegetation of 8-20 feet of water will also hold some panfish. As the temps warm up, several types of bug hatches will start to take place, in turn, activating many good opportunities for feeding panfish. Small, tear-drop jigs tipped with soft plastics continues and will continue to catch fish.


Tight Lines,

Capt. Jarrid

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