Ice Report and Predictions Headed Into March
After an unseasonable warm spell throughout MN, Lake of the Woods Tourism is getting a lot of inquiries as you can imagine. The #1 question, “How is the ice?” It has been sloppy on top of the ice but thankfully, we had a good base of good ice underneath thus we are in good shape. Current ice thickness is anywhere from 24″ – 30″ depending upon what part of the lake. The snow on top has been greatly reduced and snowmobiles will have a hard time after the freeze up again as they tend to overheat without the snow. Ice fishing continues and in most cases, it has been good.
If you notice throughout the entire year, we encourage folks to work through a resort as they know where the natural problem areas are each year, they monitor cracks and ice upheavals, they re-route ice roads if there is a problem area, etc. Basically, resorts and outfitters who maintain roads and trails for their customers will drive roads early in the morning to make sure there are no changes or problem areas and keep an eye on things throughout the day. It is safety first and they will determine what is allowed on their road.
In regards to predictions for March, only Mother Nature really knows for sure, but there are some long time guides who based on the fall fishing and how well the winter season has gone, think March will continue to be great for anglers. Recently, I had the chance to speak with Robbie Johnson of Johnson’s Walleye Retreat located on Bostic Bay that leads to the Morris Point Gap. Robbie, Jamie and his kids recently purchased Walleye Retreat which for them was a dream come true. Robbie grew up in this area, has worked with numerous resorts, is a charter captain and has a passion for Lake of the Woods. Check out his predictions and ideas on current fishing below.
As you can see from the above images, ice fishing is in full force on The Walleye Capital. So good to see kids out fishing and enjoying the great outdoors. Also notice the 10 day weather report for Baudette which is very favorable for maintaining our ice.
As many of you know, fish houses are allowed on Lake of the Woods through March. In addition, the walleye season is open through April 14th. Here are some dates to remember in the next few months…
March 31… The last day fish houses can be left out overnight
April 14… The last day of walleye / sauger season
April 23… The last day of sturgeon catch and release
April 24 – May 7… Sturgeon keep season (1 per calendar year, fish must be 45 – 50″ inclusive or over 70″)
May 8 – 15… Sturgeon catch and release only
May 13… The MN Fishing Opener
May 16 – June 30… Sturgeon season closed
June 18 – Nov 30… Muskie open
Pike, bass, perch and crappies open all year.