Friday, January 29, 2010

Lake Waconia News

Stop by the Bait Shop this weekend, grab a cup of coffee or hot chocolate, and watch history motor by. The 20th Annual Vintage & Antique Snowmobile Event is in town Saturday 1/30/10 and Sunday 1/31/10. As usual they will be set up in the south east corner of the lake by the beach, but you will see the old machines zipping along almost anywhere on the lake this weekend. Seeing those old concoctions buzz by is always a hoot.

Temperatures have dropped significantly since our last posting and the lake has firmed right back up. The roads are pretty bumpy in spots, but thanks to Jim and his V-plow, getting around is still just as doable. You will find that off-roading isn't bad on the main lake, as long as you stay out of an old abandoned road or path. The snow has really depleted out there, but a little fresh stuff from earlier in the week sure prettied things up giving us some needed banking snow.

See You on the Lake!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Big Pike Action!

It seems like every couple weeks we get to brag about something, and this week it's the big northern pike!
During the warm up people were finally able to get out and do some serious tip-up fishing and it has paid off.
Many of the Northern Pike have have been coming from Waconia bay, Center Reef, Nelson's Flats and North of Pillsbury Reef. Anglers are catching them in 10'-15' of water, near or in the weeds. Sucker minnows have been the bait of choice, with many people putting their minnows on a tip-up rig or a good old plain hook. We have been hearing of some smaller Northern pike being caught as well, which is great news for the future.

With all of the rain and warm weather a lot of people wondering how the ice is holding up. The ice is more than holding it's own. Ice thickness has not changed much, if at all. The plowed roads are holding up well, but expect a decent amount of water on the roads, and a little rough ride. At the time of this post it's 4:00pm Sunday 1/24/10 and we expect things to be firmed up substantially by Wednesday or sooner. We have not heard of any swirling of holes in fish houses yet, but if we do we will report it right away. For the most updated report feel free to call the Bait Shop for more info. (952) 442-2096

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Thursday, January 14, 2010

Lake Waconia Fishing Report 1-14-10

It's finally getting a little warmer out. With temps reaching into the 30's, you can expect the bite to pick up. So far Sunfish have been more active. Of course you'll still have to deal with sorting out a lot of smaller fish, but there have been more good size sunnies brought in recently. We've still been hearing of action around Center Reef and Pillsbury Reef, but anglers are spreading out further to the north as well. Some folks have been having success in as little as 9 feet of water, but the average still remains 11-14 feet. Crappies have slowly bitten better, but are still not up to the standards we're used to. It wouldn't be a bad idea to try moving to the deeper side of Pillsbury Reef, in the range of 20 to 25 feet. With the warmer temps, crappies on Waconia tend to suspend 5 or more feet off the bottom in these deeper water areas. Most anglers continue to fish near weeds in 12 to 14 feet of water closer to Pillsbury Reef and Center Reef, but the action has been inconsistent. We're continuing to hear good walleye reports from anglers. We've weighed numerous walleyes between 16 to 29 inches in the past week, with the largest being an 8# 9 oz. 28 incher. Both shiner minnows and fatheads have been working, so we recommend bringing both. Anglers have been spreading out all over the lake for the walleyes. Areas such as North Reef, Kegs Reef, Anderson's Reef and Cemetery Reef have been good spots to try to get away from the traffic. The main thing we've consistently heard is that most of the walleyes have been coming between 13 to 18 feet of water. The Northern Pike bite has improved this year compared to the previous few. That being said, don't expect the tip-up flag to be flying up non-stop. Those having the most success have been putting time on the water. Sucker minnows have been the bait of choice. Center Reef and Pillsbury continue to produce the majority of northern being reported. The big pike this week was a 39 incher that weighed 16 pounds!

Don't forget that we rent fish houses! We offer either 4 hole or 6 hole fish houses for 6 or 12 hour time periods. Call 952-442-2096 to reserve. We drill and slush out the holes and have the heat on for you.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Carver County Pheasants Forever Fish House Raffle

The Carver County Pheasants Forever Chapter will be having a Raffle on Saturday January, 23rd 2010 at their annual banquet. The Raffle proceeds will go to the local PF club and the Waconia Conservation Club! The main prize being a custom built Fish House with the following features.

-6 1/2'x12' plus V-front

-square tubing frame

-crank down wheels with leaf spring suspension

-crank down tongue, so the house can remain hooked to your hitch while fishing. The tongue is also easily removable for theft deterrence.

-spray foam insulation

-rubber roof

-2 Vinyl windows

-5 holes, with catch covers

-carpeted and paneled inside

-vent-less heater

-tail lights

Tickets can be purchased at the In Towne Marina for $10 each, with a limit of 1000 tickets to be sold. The fish house can be seen on the ice in front of the In Towne Marina immediately.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Brrrrrrrrr... It sure is cold, but the walleyes don't care! 1-3-2010

The temperature has been cold, but the big walleye bite has been hot! In the last week we have seen and heard of more big walleyes than we can remember in any other short stretch of time! When you talk to anyone who has been fishing on Waconia recently, they have either caught a nice walleye or know someone else who did. period. There are no big secrets right now, just make sure to follow some of these rules.

Be patient- seems obvious, but give it some time, sometimes you get lucky, but usually time on the ice is necessary. this ties into the next point.

Fish at the right time- Again, seems obvious but so many people are walking into the bait shop at noon and asking where the walleyes are. We respond with our own question- "Can you fish into dark tonight at all?" and the answer too many times is " No, not tonight I have to be home by 5pm" what we are getting at is, where isn't always as important as when. Make sure You are on the ice in the evening or early a.m. if You are serious about catching walleye!

Get alone- Being off by yourself where it is quiet isn't always necessary when walleye fishing, but we would argue that the experienced anglers that get away from the crowds are catching the majority of the eyes! This has been hard to do lately, but now that Jim has plowed such a nice network of roads, people can start to spread out!

Try something new- Easy to say, but just get a little creative. Try slowing down, downsize baits when it's tough. When there is action, upsize and get aggresive, pay attention to what the fish are doing today. Just because something worked great with your uncle back in 1988 doesn't mean that it applies to today.

Enough about fish, let's talk lake conditions. Ice thickness is now in the 10" to 17" range , with 14" to 15" being most common. We are certain you can find more or less than this in areas, but these numbers are most common. Slush under the deep snow had been difficult to deal with last week, but thanks to the extreme cold, those slushy areas have firmed up nicely. Driving off road has gotten easier thanks that slush freezing and the snow settling some. When you venture off the beaten path still make sure to check ice ahead of yourself and don't forget the shovel.

Good luck on the ice!
Call the bait shop anytime with any questions!
(952) 442-2096