The weather is still cooperating to an extent and walleye anglers are finding a pretty good bite on the reefs and windswept shorelines. The best depth is around 20 feet, the best bait has been minnows on a jig and the best areas have been west of Brule Narrows. Well, at least that’s where most anglers are giving it a try. The crappie bite has been good in Black Bay on the west side near the Rat Root River. There is a strong smallmouth bass bite if you hit the southern rocky shorelines from Black Bay to Lost Bay.
The walleye bite has been just as good in the Rainy River, with the best reports coming from the areas downstream from the Little Fork River and from Manitou Rapids west of Loman. Rainy River walleye are hitting on shiner minnows.
Grouse Hunters have been seeing more birds as the cover has thinned but all feel the numbers of birds are down from last year despite a stronger drumming count this spring. This weekend, most hunters will probably be scouting for the upcoming firearms deer season
Fewer anglers have been getting out, but those that do are being rewarded with a solid walleye and crappie bite. The hottest area is Black Bay, but walleye can also be found along the windswept shorelines in 15 to 20 feet of water. Jigging or trolling with a minnow is the best bet. Rainy River walleye continue to hit minnows below the dam at International Falls. This last weekend of October promises to be pretty nice and will be a great opportunity to fit in a bit more fishing.
Grouse hunters are finding more birds as the cover has been thinning, however, the assessment is the total numbers are down from last year despite a solid increase in drumming counts this spring. Fall color watchers are just about out-of-luck. Not all the leaves are down, but certainly the brightest colors have hit the ground.
For the most up-to-date information you can call the International Falls, Ranier and Rainy Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau at 1-800-325-5766
Black Bay and the Rat Root River are the hottest spots for walleye and crappie right now. The Rat Root flows through it’s own lake and into the west end of Black Bay and anglers are finding walleye in 10 to 15 feet of water throughout that stretch. The crappies are in the same area, but are a little tougher to locate. There have also been good reports of walleye both above and below the Ranier Rapids.
Rainy River has been hot for walleye pretty much from International Falls to Baudette. The annual fall run of walleyes follows a run of emerald shiners they are feeding on. If you can get emerald shiners, that will be the best bait to use. At the same time, anglers are pulling in walleye with other minnows.
Grouse hunters are seeing more birds as the cover thins a bit. There’s still some color to be seen in the fall woods, but leaves are coming down steadily