“Otter Tail Lakes Country got a good washing this week. We added 2-3 inches of rain through out the lakes area and the run off has raised the lakes to normal levels. This bodes well for boaters of all categories because accesses will be easier to negotiate and loading/unloading all sizes and classes of boats will be less of a chore. Cruising near shorelines won’t be as hazardous either. Rocky areas and reefs that were shallow from last fall through last week, are now well under water. As the summer continues and dry days arrive we can rest easier knowing the present water surplus will help keep boat props out of rocks and sand.
As for now, the opener of walleye fishing is still 10 days away, so we will continue to target sunfish and crappie in shallow water in Otter Tail Lakes Country. The rain and cool weather set back the good fishing in shallow bays on lakes around the area. Panfish had been heading into the bays, on schedule, as the ice came off the small and mid-sized lakes a week ago—until the rains and cool winds and heavy clouds rolled in. We haven’t had enough good sunny days to make early season shallow water fishing profitable, which I think is on par with the rest of Minnesota. The next week’s forecast looks better and brighter. We need sunlight to warm the shallow water, which will bring numbers of panfish closer. The bottom line to good fishing is always mathematical. The more fish present in an area the better your odds are! That’s just the way it works. The more fish the more apt they are to continually feed—it leaves some room for error/s. Things don’t have to be just right. They don’t seem to see heavy line and the “wrong” sized hook and weight; nor do they seem to be as concerned about anchor splashes and shadows and boat noises when there are lots of fish packed into small zones. When the sun casts it’s rays this week get on the lake, find the warmest water on the lake, be as quiet as you can on your approach into these areas, cast lightly, listen to the red-wing black birds on shore, and wait only a moment for the feisty strike from a crappie or sunny. It is time. Good luck fishing this week in Otter Tail Lakes Country.”