Dustin Monson of Hawg Hunterz Guide Service gives his latest Buzz Bite Report for the Brainerd Lakes Area ice report on January 6th, 2023.
Brainerd Lakes Area Buzz Bite Report 1-6-2023
Happy New Year!! Ice fishing continues to be great in the Brainerd Lakes Area! We’re seeing fishable ice on most of the lakes in the area and a huge majority of the slush froze with the recent cold snap! We’re seeing about 10-15 inches of ice in the area, and varying levels of snow due to wind/drifting. There are still slush pockets in several areas, including Gull Lake. Please ensure you’re checking ice conditions frequently.
Catch crappies and bluegills in bays under 12ft of water, and basins/holes of 22-30ft (finding fish suspended in the bottom third of the water column).
1/16oz or 1/32oz jigs tipped with a Mister Twister Sassy Stingum or wax worms, 1/16oz spoon or glide-bait style lure, such as a Crystal Reaper or Jigging Raps (I’ve had a lot of success with a small tungsten jigs with a soft plastic or wax worm too).
Aggressive jigging will bring schools in, although it’s a good idea to drill several holes and jig 10-15 minutes in each hole before moving to the next hole or spot.
Jig higher in the water column, a good rule of thumb is splitting the depth in half and jigging at that location in the water column as well as jigging within 2-3ft from the bottom.
Pluck fish from the top of schools to avoiding scattering the school. Bluegills continue hitting tungsten jigs tipped with the tail end of a Mister Twister Sassy Stingum or wax worm on weed flats or soft bottom areas in those similar locations.
Northern pike are hitting sucker minnows and spoons tipped with a minnow head. Try suspending a sucker minnow or shiner under a tip up/IFishPro in 10-18ft, especially around weeds. Walleyes are active at low light periods and hitting minnows/livebait presentations or spoons tipped with a minnow head jigged near bottom in 24-28ft of water.
Mille Lacs Lake
On Mille Lacs, many main lake areas are accessible by ATV or Snowmobile, though first shoreline break offers many opportunities for quality fish!
Target walleyes and northern pike in 6-18ft, or 22-27ft. Target them with sucker minnows or shiners on set lines or Deadsticks, or jigging a spoon tipped the head of a fathead (Lindy Quiver Spoon in metallic colors 1/8oz or 1/4oz). We’ve been catching many year classes of walleyes on secondary and main lake structures!
We’re excited about all the opportunities this ice fishing season! Always practice safety first on all early ice bodies of water! Have fun, stay safe and Happy Hawg Hunting!