We are well into the fall season and so far, so good. The weather has been pretty cooperative so the farmers have been able to get into the fields to harvest their crops. This fall has also been pretty good to the duck hunters and there seem to be enough deer around to keep the bow hunters going. I’d like to think that there are still enough nice days ahead to get in another day of fishing before the water starts to harden.
There is still time to latch onto that lunker you have been looking for. Late fall is a great time for catching the “Big One” that has eluded you all summer. It’s a fact there are more big fish caught in the fall than any other season of the year. In late fall the fish are hungry and are trying to “bulk-up” for the winter season when their metabolism slows.
Although you may not find the sheer numbers of fish in the fall, when you do catch one it may very well be that elusive big one you have been seeking. A few years back I caught a dandy walleye on Spider Lake in early October that up until last year was a personal best. Last fall my grandson Dylan and I had great pike fishing on a mid-October fishing trip to our cabin and he caught his personal-best northern on that trip.
Many musky fishermen hit the lake hard from October until ice-over because they know their chance for that trophy fish increases in late fall. A few years back I had a permanent camp spot at Best Point on Lake Tetonka and decided to do a little October fishing. I trolled the outside weed edges of a large flat using a “Little Joe” spinner and a minnow. Although I had visions of that lunker walleye, I instead found the northern fishing to be great and ended up catching my limit of nice pike.
That same day I noticed only one other boat on that large lake and he was fishing for bass. I knew the spot he was fishing very well because I had fished there many times before. I was actually headed to that spot when I spotted him there and decided that a lake this large has plenty of other places to fish. About a week later I read in the Minneapolis paper that the state record largemouth bass had come out of Tetonka on the same day I was there. That is probably the closest I will ever get to a state record, but it reinforced my belief that Tetonka was a good fishing lake and fall is a great time for big fish.
Speaking of fish, the DNR is in the final phase of reclaiming State Line Lake and has issued the following news release:
Rehabilitation project enters final phases with rough fish eradication
A multi-year cooperative effort to improve water quality, fish and wildlife habitat on State Line Lake near Emmons, is entering its final phases.
For many years the lake has been infested with carp and other rough fish, and exhibited poor water quality. Carp aggressively forage through bottom sediments, uprooting aquatic plants and reducing water quality.
“Once a lake becomes dominated by carp and black bullheads, the ecosystem goes out of balance,” said Jeanine Vorland, DNR area wildlife supervisor. “We are using a multipronged approach to get rid of the rough fish, restore aquatic habitats and improve the lake.”
The cooperative effort includes partners from Freeborn County, State Line Lake Restoration. Ducks Unlimited, the Worth County Conservation Board, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
Vorland said water levels on the lake were lowered last fall to allow for construction of a new dam and fish barrier. The work on the new outlet has been completed. The lake has remained low during the summer to allow vegetation regrowth. With the new fish barrier in place, the lake and some tributaries will be treated with rotenone to eliminate fish remaining in the lake. Vorland expected the treatment would be on Oct. 9 or 10, weather permitting.
Following treatment, lake water levels will be restored and the DNR will restock the lake with compatible game fish and pan fish next spring.
A majority of the funding for this project was provided by the Outdoor Heritage Fund. This fund was created after voters approved the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment in November 2008, which increased sales tax by three-eighths of 1 percent. The fund receives one-third of the sales tax dollars and may only be spent to restore, protect and enhance wetlands, prairies, forest and habitat for game fish and wildlife as approved by the Minnesota Legislature.
State Line Lake covers about 450 acres and at normal water level has an average depth of 3.5 feet.
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Has anyone noticed that there is an election going on? I can’t remember the last time I have heard or read so many negative things said about the opposing candidate by their respective parties. Whatever happened to running on your own merit and telling the voters what you hope to accomplish if elected? Then there was a candidate and his wife who were reportedly wrestling with a homeowner over a campaign sign. Really?
Until next time, enjoy the fall and take advantage of some late season fishing weather.
Please remember to keep our troops in your thoughts and prayers because they are the reason that we are able to enjoy all the freedoms that we have today.