Memorial Day is nearly here, and warmer weather has finally made an appearance in Otter Tail Lakes Country. Last week’s exceptionally cool weather set back this week’s fishing and fish patterning. Walleye are gearing up for the shiner hunt. This week’s warm weather will drive the shiner spawn, and walleye around the county will linger near shore and shallows. Focus fishing for walleye in shallow water. Pay attention to vegetation. Know what type of vegetation you’re fishing near when you catch your first walleye. Also be sure to notice how dense the weeds are and their proximity to deep water. If you can make these connections and correlations this could be the beginning of a mid-May walleye pattern. You should be able to repeat your catching in other areas of the lake, based on this information. However, be aware the shallow water walleye bite is volatile. It can fall apart quickly depending on wind and or weather factors—shallow fish are shifty. In general, the walleye fishing around Otter Tail Lakes Country has been slow until now. The walleye fishing, like the weather, is beginning to heat up. Consider fishing walleye with smaller-sized jigs 1/8 oz and 3/16 and tip them with shiners, leeches, sucker minnows, fatheads, and crawlers. Try several different colors to dial in on the best color. Don’t forget about the ole stand by Lindy Rig tipped with crawlers, minnows, or leeches—many different baits are beginning to work so don’t leave the dock without an assortment. The water temps around Otter Tail Lakes Country are 50-53 degrees and climbing—this is good. The warming temps higher over-night air temperature, will finally keep the panfish aiming towards shorelines and bays—and hopefully they stay long enough this time to give good fishing action. With the onset of warmer temps outside, anglers around the Ottertail area can rest easy knowing fishing is going to really pick up in the next 3 and 4 days—for all species. Good luck on the lakes this week.
Ross Hagemeister, meisterguideservice.com