451 West Sheridan Street Ely, Minnesota 55731
Fishing Report
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Summer patterns are now in full swing in the Ely area. Walleyes are hovering around mid lake structure such as reefs and points of islands. Successful anglers have been trolling crank baits and spinner rigs around the transition zones where the rock formations begin to level out and change over to dirt or sand bottom. Crawlers and leeches rigged on a spinner can be very effective right now. Early and late in the day you'll find that the fish are moving up shallow on these rock patches in search of bait that move shallow for the evening and night time hours. Some folks are also fishing up in the shallows near weed edges or skinny water stucture. Where a smooth flat bottom is interrupted by a rock and or rubble field might be just the ticket to success. Colors of lures or other offerings seem insignificant, what's more important is the area that you're fishing. If you haven't caught or marked a good number of fish, it's time to move on. Don't waste valuable time by fishing over a non productive patch in hopes that the fish will "turn on" eventually.

Smallmouth and largemouth bass fishing has been smoking hot with fish up to five and six pounds being landed. Top water baits have been accounting for a good number of bass lately. Try casting around weed edges, docks, or any other structure that extends from shore to deeper water. Early and late in the day the surface bite can be red hot, and there's nothing like experiencing a large fish attacking a surface bait when the water is mill pond smooth. The action for bass can extend beyond the daylight hours into the night. Just be sure that you have the proper running lights in working order if you plan on staying out after sunset. During the mid-day hours, you may want to switch over to crank baits or spinners worked down to ten feet or so.

Northern pike have been very active as well on most of the lakes up North. Spinner baits and spoons are a preffered choice to get in on this action. Work the shorelines where smaller fish might congregate. Some of the largest pike are running in the mid-forties in length and have been running a bit deeper, down to fifteen or twenty feet. Try using larger profile crank baits such as Deep Tail Dancers by Rapala. Another good option is to use a shallow running bait weighted down with some sort of sinker like a bottom bouncer.

Lake trout action has been good on Burntside Lake and Snowbank. Burntside seems to be turning out better numbers of fish than Snowbank, but the latter has generated more of the larger fish over ten pounds. Trolling spoons down at thirty to forty-five feet no matter what the depth of water has been most productive. The most action has occurred where bait fish schools are present. If you are marking pods of bait, that is where the larger predators will be. Keep your eye on your fish finder, as this will indicate where the action will be. Structure seems of little importance as the larger fish are concentrating on these bait balls that are free ranging.

Stream trout lakes have been producing very good numbers of rainbows, splake and brown trout. The easiest way to insure a catch has been to just suspend a crawler under a slip bobber set at ten to fifteen feet down. If you want to target larger fish, then slow troll some smaller profile crank baits set to run at these depths either weighted with a sinker or dragged along behind a downrigger or Dipsy Diver. Some rainbows have been caught in excess of twenty inches in length.

The panfish bit has been good, with the exception of crappies which have been slow to turn on. If you do manage to catch a crappie, then work the area over thoroughly as usually where there's one, there are more nearby. Watch your fish finder for targets right on the bottom, as some crappies are gorging themselves on small invertibrates and blood worms emerging from the mud or silt. This action can take place down to twenty-two feet or so. A drop shot rig works well under these conditions when rigged with either a minnow or soft plastic bait on the hook.