Living in the greater metropolitan center of Minneapolis and St. Paul, it gives me an opportunity to fish local lakes and rivers during the summer months. Many people might fish these areas in the early spring or right after the opener, but when summer comes they move out to lakes, and rivers up north. This is great, because some of the greatest fishing happens in the downtown areas of most metro centers across the upper Midwest.
For example the Mississippi river section from the Ford dam downstream is a great location in the winter time for cabin fevered anglers to get out and catch some walleyes before the seasons opener. This area is just as good during the summer months as well as the winter months. Or, how about the guy who spends 6 hours on the road one way to fish a walleye lake in northern Minnesota, only to discover it is suffering from a cold front. Or, the guy who only had four hours to fish, because he had to be back at work the following morning.
That is why I prefer to fish the city area for some real walleye fishing. Walleye fishing in this area is just like the walleye fishing in the northern lakes. You can flip Fuzzy Grub jigs into weedbeds, troll Shad Rap crankbaits along the rip rap or fish a quite pool next to an interstate highway with a Thill float and some split shot.
Although the lakes are good, during the summer I prefer to go to the river during the summer months. The river is always changing and most metro areas have rivers that produce some nice walleyes.
River levels late summer become much more stable, sometimes even a little on the low side which make the fish that much more predictable on their location. Catching river fish at this time of the year isn't the problem. The problem is deciding whether you want to catch a bunch of river fish, or big river fish.
Live-bait or artificials are the two factors, which will most likely dictate the outcome of your catch.
Live-bait presentations are fish catching machines. Tipping a jig with a minnow, leech, or crawler is like opening a candy jar in front of a dirty faced kid. Live bait rigs like Lindy Rigs dressed with a crawler will trigger a fish strike even if the fish is full to the gills.
Don't get me wrong live-bait is the way to go if you want to catch a lot of fish in the river. If your fishing with kids, live-bait will insure that action is almost guaranteed, and this a is sure fired bet that your young fishing companion will come back for more. If I'm in the mood for chasing only big river fish, I'll leave the live-bait in the cooler. Various crankbaits for different circumstances and species of fish will decorate the gunnel of my boat. Long stick-baits like a #11 floating Rapala or a jointed version will be used if I'm trolling for walleyes. Most compact crankbaits like a Rattlin' Rapala will be used to pitch shoreline structure.
Fishing a crankbait for big fish correctly in the river is an art, which can be mastered with lots of time on the water. Aggressive fish will hit a crankbait, which is trolled upstream. Non-aggressive fish have a tendency to strike more often when you troll downstream with the current.
So this summer if you have some time and you donâ€™t want to drag your boat to the north get into those metro rivers and start looking for walleyes. You will be amazed at how Hot the Times can be in the City. By the way if you do have great success drop me a line at www.samanderson.com