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I was surprised.
09-23-2018, 05:37 AM
Post: #1
I was surprised.
Yesterday we took a drive to Wabasha to check out their September Fall Fest activities. Wabasha was bustling with activities and I've never seen so many people walking the streets. They even had people with golf carts shuttling folks around town. Slipperies was packed and you couldn't find a parking spot within a block.
However, the thing that really caught my interest was after all this rain, was the river water level.
It was high and milky but what I thought fishable for dike road or backwater shore fishing. Up to the bank, but not over flowing. Virtually no current or fast flowing water. Even as high as it was there were many places that were stagnant with lots of algae.
You could see on the main bridge pillars the water level is starting to drop.
The Zumbro River on the upstream side of Kellogg was high, but not really crazy like I suspected it would be.
Saw a handful of people fishing between Wabashand and Nelson but didn't stop long enough to determine if they were catching anything or not.
As soon as the water clears up and cools off, I anticipate fishing to be good.
I've always liked seeing the water get high this time of the year. It lets panfish migrate into those shallow backwaters easier and seems to hold them.

The hardest thing in life is knowing which bridge to cross and which one to burn.
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10-01-2018, 06:21 PM
Post: #2
RE: I was surprised.
I've been gone Ron but I think I need to try the backwaters one day soon. Its been a little over a week since you were down there....have you been back yet?
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10-02-2018, 04:21 PM
Post: #3
RE: I was surprised.
Tom, it's been awhile but I've not had much success in the backwaters in the fall. What are you targeting? Panfish, bass, walleye? Mostly plastic baits or are you fishing live bait this time of the year? Thanks for any advice.

Fish On!
Lew
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10-02-2018, 08:12 PM
Post: #4
RE: I was surprised.
Lew, in the backwaters I'd be looking for crappies and sunfish. And yes, plastic is the name of the game as a rule however the Gulp 1" minnows can come into play at times as well. I know Ron likes to tease sunfish with waxies, but I do plastic pretty much.
Something I've begun doing is to put plastics in the Gulp jar and let'em soak between trips. I'm not sure how much of the Gulp stuff gets into the plastic but when Gulp is the way to go even those baits that have been swimming in the jar a while are as good as the Gulp product itself.

Don't discount the walleyes in backwaters either if there's some current. I've gotten a wake-up call a few times from an over weight waldo while trying to tempt crappies.

Another option is to cast off the docks in Wabasha harbor. Try jigging close to the stabilization pipes at the ends of the sections, starting shallow and slowly getting right down to the bottom.

Along the dike road between Wabasha and Nelson you'll find a ton of good wood in the water on the north side of the road. Casting to that using a float with the jig/plastic hung under it can be very rewarding. I might be game to run down one morning early next week. If I see a shot open I'll send you a pm. Ron would have to go along too but you'd get along with him.
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10-03-2018, 05:05 AM
Post: #5
RE: I was surprised.
No Tom I have yet to make a return visit. It's been cold, wet and windy. From the predicted forecast, if I want to go, I'll just have to prepare and brave the elements.
Yes Lew everything Tom describes is accurate. There are a ton of places to explore this time of the year. Places you can walk back into you couldn't during spring flooding. Dike road, Half Moon landing, Finger Lakes, harbors both in Lake City, Wabasha and down by Winona. One place I'd like to try is McNallys landing and Minnesota City boat harbor and ramp area.
I continue to maintain the backwaters can be dynamite this time of the year especially if the water is high. They can migrate back into those spots much easier and have a tendency to hold.

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10-06-2018, 10:06 AM
Post: #6
RE: I was surprised.
Thank you for the invite to a weekday fishing outing gentlemen. I'm still working at Mother Mayo, but can get away with relatively short notice. Keep me in mind if you are looking to get out. I'm also hoping for some Indian summer days when I can hit the backwaters with my kayak. A friend and I had planned to get out next Wednesday possibly in the Waterville area, but the forecast is looking pretty damp.

Thanks Gentlemen for keeping this site interesting.

Fish On!
Lew
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10-07-2018, 06:58 AM
Post: #7
RE: I was surprised.
(10-06-2018 10:06 AM)Lew Wrote:  Thank you for the invite to a weekday fishing outing gentlemen. I'm still working at Mother Mayo, but can get away with relatively short notice. Keep me in mind if you are looking to get out. I'm also hoping for some Indian summer days when I can hit the backwaters with my kayak. A friend and I had planned to get out next Wednesday possibly in the Waterville area, but the forecast is looking pretty damp.

Thanks Gentlemen for keeping this site interesting.

I just read at IDO where the river is high and dirty. One report was that the dam at Red Wing had gates wide open. The backwaters where I'd fish will be a mess if such is the case. The marinas may offer some fishing but I've never done well with water being so high. I might drive down to Lake City Mon or Tues to check things out first hand.
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10-07-2018, 10:45 AM
Post: #8
RE: I was surprised.
I'd check the boat harbor out right about now, I remember years of limiting on 12 in crappies off the docks. Might have to head down this weekend. Also if you can get back into the airport lake , the dock there has always held some big sunnies. You have to weed some out, but it's a good amount of fun! The Winona area is a bunch of fun in the fall!


(10-03-2018 05:05 AM)Ron Wrote:  No Tom I have yet to make a return visit. It's been cold, wet and windy. From the predicted forecast, if I want to go, I'll just have to prepare and brave the elements.
Yes Lew everything Tom describes is accurate. There are a ton of places to explore this time of the year. Places you can walk back into you couldn't during spring flooding. Dike road, Half Moon landing, Finger Lakes, harbors both in Lake City, Wabasha and down by Winona. One place I'd like to try is McNallys landing and Minnesota City boat harbor and ramp area.
I continue to maintain the backwaters can be dynamite this time of the year especially if the water is high. They can migrate back into those spots much easier and have a tendency to hold.
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