Regular fall temperatures have returned to the area
The warmer weather came over Labor Day weekend and more normal temperatures have returned, which has made almost everything better now.
You’ll find walleye on the edge of the green cabbage up to 30 feet in the lakes area. Jigs, minnows, Northland Puppet Minnows, Jigging Raps, and slip bobbers are being used to upset some of the walleye in area lakes.
Water temperatures are slowly dropping and are now in the mid 60s in most lakes. You will still find some crappies and bluegills off the green weeds in 10-12 feet but you will also find some in the deeper pond areas where they suspend and typically spend the late fall and winter there.
Bass fishing remains good and pike fishing is going strong in area lakes. As the leaves start to change, it’s a good time to get out on the water.
Congratulations to Will Pappenfus of Shevlin for fishing his first season on the National Walleye Tour and qualifying for the tournament last week on Devils Lake. The top 40 anglers qualified for the tournament. All 40 people fished the first two days, and then the top 10 fished on the third and final day. He would move all the way to third place among the best walleye anglers in the world. Congratulations Lowell on a great job!
Bemidji area: The heat and some storms last weekend reduced hunter activity. Walleye action has slowed a bit, but jigs, minnows and Jiggin’ Raps have been producing some fish in Lake Bemidji, Turtle Lake and Grace Lake in 14 to 30 feet. There has been a trend toward the deeper basins of area lakes in search of crappie and bluegills, but you will still find some in the deep crappie. Pike fishing has been good with larger minnows, and bass fishing remains very strong using deep weed plastics in most lakes.
Black Duck area: Bluegills and crappies remain active along 10- to 14-foot weed lines on Lake Beamushi, Gull Lake, Rapido Lake and Gilstead Lake. Blackduck Lake and Island Lake are giving up walleye — most of which have been small — on spinners, crawlers or jigs and minnows. Despite the hot weather early in the season, bear hunter success has been good, and baits are hitting. Goose hunting was slow, and only a few birds were seen in the area.
Cass Lake Area: Walleyes are hitting crankbaits at night on bars all over Cass Lake in 6 to 8 feet. During the day, a jig and a piece of crawler produce walleye in 10 to 15 feet on Pike Bay Lake and Deadman’s Bar or North Cedar Bar in Cass. Perch action remains strong on sand in 6 to 8 feet at Cass, Pike Bay, Wolf Lake and Androsia Lake. Look for bluegills in 6- to 8-foot weeds on Lake Kitchee and Dick Bay in Cass. Muskie’s reports have been light over the past week.
Lake Winnipegushish: Despite last weekend’s heat, walleye fishing has held up well. Cover the water with spinners, minnows, crankbaits and crawlers from 8 to 22 feet. The main lake structure, shoreline breaks, and structure closest to shore all hold walleye. It just depends on the day or time of day that there are larger schools of walleye that are active. Pike are also staying active, hitting spoons and crankbaits in 10 to 15 feet. You will find some perch mixed in with the walleye.
Upper Red Lake: The few walleye that are caught often come out of 6 to 8 feet of water. Overall, the bite remains tough and you really need to cover the water along the beaches during low light periods using crankbaits, spinner rigs and minnows or crawlers. Look for a jig and minnow bite to catch once the water temps start to drop.
Please remember to practice selective harvesting, by doing this we will continue to have great catches for years to come.
Dick Beardsley is the owner and operator of Dick Beardsley Fishing Guide Service in Bemidji. It can be reached at
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Dick Beardsley is the owner and operator of Dick Beardsley Fishing Guide Service in Bemidji, Minnesota, and writes a weekly fishing report.