On the south end… Ice fishing is going strong on Lake of the Woods. As the ice thickens, resorts / outfitters start increasing weight limits. Each area of the lake can have very different ice conditions, check ahead based on where you access the lake. Stay on marked ice roads, trails, etc.
Fishing reports for walleyes and saugers are excellent. Most anglers report catching numbers of fish and having to sort through many small fish to find keepers. Good for the future but make sure you have plenty of bait. Nice numbers of slot fish (19.5″ – 28.0″) are being caught, quickly photographed and released. A good population of trophy walleyes over 28.0″ in the lake and they are being caught as well.
Good action in 21 – 27 feet of water. For those who are portable, some morning / evening fish are being caught from 9 – 18′ along shore.
The one two punch, jigging one line and deadsticking your second line is most effective. Gold, glow colors, lighted lures and lures with vibration and rattles effective on jigging line. A live minnow just off the bottom on the second line for your deadstick. Some using a plain hook, others prefer an ice jig.
Pike anglers are still finding good numbers of pike on tip ups. Plenty of pike being caught by walleye anglers. Eelpout, jumbo perch, tullibees, sturgeon and an occasional crappie showing up as well. You never know on Lake of the Woods.
On the Rainy River… The Rainy River is ice covered and where there is good ice, anglers are finding walleyes and sturgeon. With the current of the river, knowing where and where not to travel and working through resorts / outfitters who know ice conditions is key.
Good fishing this week. The walleye bite is best in the mornings and evenings. Sturgeon are still active and creating some sore arms!
Up at the NW Angle… Ice is progressing nicely and the walleye fishing is starting out good. Depending upon where resorts have fish houses, some are active mornings and evenings with a lull during the day. Others positioned in deeper water pick at fish all day but not the flurries. Both are good options.
The snowmobile trails along both the west and east sides of the lake are open, groomed and staked. The ice runway for Lake Country Air is open and flights are delivering excited anglers. Bomber service across the lake via Lake of the Woods Passenger Service anticipated after Christmas.
Driving via land to and from the Angle through Canada is open. Must be vaccinated and have a negative PCR COVID Test. Plan ahead with testing or rapid tests are available in Baudette and this week in Warroad. Once at the Angle, no additional COVID testing is necessary for traveling back south from the Angle through Canada.