Showing posts from April, 2011

Fishing Report 4-29-11

From 4/25 through 4/28, water temperatures ranged from 38 to 42 in the morning and 39 to 45 in the afternoon on the Lower and Middle Shore, while they were 38 to 39 on the Upper Shore.   Interviewed anglers caught 13 Steelhead and 24 Kamloops on the Lower Shore, 13 Steelhead, 4 Kamloops, and 4 Brook Trout on the Middle Shore, and 5 Steelhead on the Upper Shore. The Knife Trap totals are 299 Steelhead and 16 Kamloops, while French River Trap totals are 579 Kamloops and 58 Steelhead. S tream flows shorewide rose again on 4/27 and have stayed high.  Several of the middle shore river, though high are running clear. DNR Fishing reports are updated on the web on Mondays and Fridays at ttp://   or by calling our office at 218-525-0853 and selecting 1 for the updated fishing report 

Some quick 2011 analysis...

Couple items to note: Quickie graphic through 04.29.2011 to show how 2011 Lower Shore creel is shaping up against 2010. The data displayed are all weekly averages. (Update - All the prior graphics are day by day updates. What you see below are weekly averages and are a better way to make year to year comparisons. We just haven't had enough data to work with until now). Last year was a bit of an oddball simply because of how early things started. 2011 is beginning to be an oddball due to the wild daily swings in temps and flows we are getting. It's certainly affecting fishing success. Lots of hard-slogging days... Keep in mind too that there is a threshold discharge which limits (or ceases) upstream movement of steelhead and presumably kamloops. It doesn't mean fish aren't there or that it's futile fishing, it just means the fish are hunkered down and you need to change tactics. This halt only lasts until flows drop below that particular level, and on the Knife it

Latest 2011 Spring Run Numbers

Latest Lower, Middle & Upper Shore creel numbers along with the latest Knife & French Weir/Trap numbers. Please note that some scale normalization has taken place to accommodate the different temperature & capture scales. Where you see an XXX/10 in a legend it means original number was divided by 10. To get the actual you'll need to multiply. Where you see a XXX*10 the original number was multiplied by ten so you'll need to divide. One additional note: The Upper Shore numbers seem low, but they are always low because there are simply less people to interview (less people fishing) than on the Lower/Mid Shores. So it's an artificial low if you follow that logic, not necessarily low numbers of fish. Also, the trap numbers are capture numbers by date, not total numbers (Click for Larger Images): Lower Shore Creel: Mid Shore Creel: Upper Shore Creel: Knife River Trap: French River Trap:

Fishing Report - 4-25-11

DNR - North Shore Stream Report 4/25/11: From 4/22 through 4/24, water temperatures ranged from 37 to 41 in the morning and 39 to 45 in the afternoon on the Lower and Middle Shore, while they were 35 to 40 on the Upper Shore. Interviewed anglers caught 34 Steelhead and 31 Kamloops on the Lower Shore, 19 Steelhead and 3 Kamloops on the Middle Shore, and 5 Steelhead and 3 Kamloops on the Upper Shore.   The Knife Trap totals are 247 Steelhead and 9 Kamloops, while French River Trap totals are 424 Kamloops and 38 Steelhead. Stream flows shorewide rose on 4/23 and are now decreasing but running high and clear.   Several of us MN Steelheaders will be on the water later this week.  Stay tuned as we hope to update the reports daily. Reminder that Sunday is our river clean up.  This is open to everyone willing to volunteer a bit of time.  With enough help we should all be able to be back on the water in no time.  Please spread the word and we will see you on Sunday. Casual Gathering: Sa

DNR Creel Report

Here is the latest information from the North Shore Creel report.  The photo is a great shot from a late week outting that our friend preston and a buddy had. From 4/18 through 4/21, water temperatures ranged from 34 to 40 on the Lower and Middle Shore, while they were 33 to 35 on the Upper Shore.   From 4/18 through 4/21, interviewed anglers caught 37 Steelhead and 14 Kamloops on the Lower Shore, 58 Steelhead and 18 Kamloops on the Middle Shore, and 2 Steelhead on the Upper Shore.   The Knife Trap totals are 134 Steelhead and 7 Kamloops, while French River Trap totals are 257 Kamloops and 20 Steelhead. Stream flows on the Lower and Middle Shore are decreasing and becoming clear, while flows on the Upper Shore are running high but clear.   One can read fishing reports updated on the web on Mondays and Fridays at: or by calling our office at 218-525-0853 and selecting 1 for the fishing report updated every Monday and

Kamloop thief on the loose

Pictured here is a shot from our buddy Jesse.  He was out late last enjoying a day on the shore.  He had some good success with both steelhead and kamloop. Saving the looper for the table seemed like a great idea until he notice it was on the move! "I had an otter the size of a lab run off with my 8 lb looper. I had to track the looper through the grass by following spilled spawn. I came upon the otter and had to chase him off my fish. Crazy!" I have seen all sorts of wildlife on the shore during steelheading trips but never experience ia fish thief. Keep you eyes out for this poacher the next time you are in steelhead, or should I say, otter country. DB

2011 Spring Run Update Part II

Current Index Stream flow and 2011 DNR Creel Census numbers through latest reporting date. My apologies but the DNR/MPCA sonde packages don't appear to transmit the temperature data anymore for the Mid and Upper Shore index streams (Click for Larger Image) Mid Shore Creel Graphic: Upper Shore Creel Graphic:

2011 Spring Run Update

Interesting stuff from last weekend... It appears that the initial push of steelhead from last week was better than we thought; and while overall temps decreased in Lower Shore tribs, two things happened which certainly helped fishing: First, the stream temps didn't bottom out, which meant that fish which did enter the tribs were quite active despite the snow, wind and cold air temps. Second, discharge decreased despite the storm to very good levels of flow and clarity which was a big change from just a few days prior. Those that adjusted tactics based on stream conditions did very well. Once again carrying a thermometer is critical. It will be interesting to see the trap numbers once they start coming out. The creel numbers are a great tool for getting a sense of what kinds of numbers are already in the streams, while the trap numbers give you a good sense of the overall stage of the steelhead and kamloops returns. One item of practical note- We should already be seeing the se

Sucker River clean up date set!

Update on our Spring Sucker River Cleanup . For those not aware, Minnesota Steelheader is participating in the Minnesota Dept. of Natural Resources Adopt-a-River Program. Our first scheduled clean up will take place Sunday May 1st at 11:30am. on the Sucker river. We will meet in the parking lot on Scenic HWY 61 with trash bags and gloves on hand. We appreciate any time you can provide.  This is open to EVERYONE!  Don't be shy this is a great opportunity to give back to our fishery, meet fellow anglers and share tales & tips. We are really hoping for a great turn out. The more volunteers the faster we can complete our efforts and get back on the water. Please send us a note if you are planning on joining us for this event. We are also planning  an informal get together at a local area watering hole for a beverage and a fun, casual meet & greet Saturday Evening, April 30th. If interested shoot us a note and we will give you more details on location. Bring a friend and

Nice catch!

Here is a great shot of one respectable Kamloop caught by our friend Jesse this past weekend. Thanks for Sharing buddy!

4-18-11 Report

Despite the cold weather and the snow storm, anglers had decent success over the weekend.  Attached is one of several fish caught by some fellow MN Steelheaders. Here is the latest creel info from our friends at the DNR: From 4/15 through 4/18, water temperatures ranged from 33 to 35 in the morning and 40 to 42 in the afternoon on the Lower and Middle Shore.   W ater temperatures were 33 to 35 on Upper Shore tributaries.     From 4/15 through 4/18, interviewed anglers caught 51 Steelhead and 33 Kamloops on the Lower Shore, 19 Steelhead and 9 Kamloops on the Middle Shore, and 3 Steelhead and 1 Kamloops on the Upper Shore.   The Knife and French River Traps were opened in the morning on 4/18.   Stream flows on the Lower and Middle Shore are decreasing and becoming clear, while flows on the Upper Shore are still running high but becoming clearer.   The run is on - get out and fish! DB

4-14-11 DNR Report

From 4/11 through 4/14, water temperatures ranged from 42-44 Tuesday and Wednesday and from 36-40 the rest of the days on the Lower Shore. Water temperatures on 4/14 on the Middle shore ranged from36 to 40. From 4/11 through 4/14, interviewed anglers caught 20 Kamloops, 20 Steelhead, 3 Brook trout and 1 Coho and on the Lower Shore. Eight Kamloops were reported being caught on the Middle Shore on 4/14.   Photo courtesy Big Idea The spring creel will begin on the Upper Shore on 4/16. The Knife and French River Traps will be opened on 4/18. Stream flows on the Lower Shore are decreasing and becoming clear, while flows on the Middle and Upper Shore are still running high with debris and ice chunks. The brief warm up on 4/12 and 4/13 resulted in a run of fish on Lower Shore streams, but nighttime air temperatures the rest of the week were below freezing and have slowed things down. Two to six inches of snow is predicted for this weekend, with night time air temperatures below freezing.

04.14.2011 Fishing Report Plus

I was able to sneak out yesterday with the General for a rare early run fishing opportunity and it was an interesting day... I apologize in advance, the SD card on my camera apparently fried. I took a whole slug of photos I wanted to post, but all I got when I went to download them last night was a formatting error... Flows were well up on all the streams we stopped at and some of them are still screaming. Temperatures varied widely, but ranged from 36-43 degrees depending on when we stopped (morning or afternoon). The big baugaboo of the day was the wind which was cold and relentless. Thank goodness for the sun and some sheltered areas because at 15-25mph gusting to over 30mph at times, certain areas were not a lot of fun to fish. We hit fish everywhere we went, however actually landing one was a different story. I am sure I personally missed a fair number of fish just due to the wind. The gusts made keeping a tight line impossible at times, and often pulled the business end up an

2011 Lower Shore Temperature Tracking

04.13.2011 Update: The smaller Lower Shore tribs should be seeing their first substantial push of fish if the sun stays out today. Hard to say regarding the bigger ones, I just haven't gotten a reliable temp from those recently. The next creel census numbers will say a lot about what's happening. I suspect the numbers won't be as good as they could be due to a couple factors: The tribs are still blowing out: Big, high and dirty affects catch rates. That and it looks like the weather might slow things down again this weekend... (Click for Larger Image) Wow we're close! Using the DNR steelhead return study data along with plotting the temperatures of several Lower Shore tribs, you can see we're getting very close to the main returns beginning. No question we have fish movement going on already, but it's just first scouts as it were. I wish I would have had all of today's data, but I thought it better to get the chart put together and worry about what happen

Fishing Report: 4-11-11

Here is the latest report on fishing and conditions from our friends a the Minnesota DNR: From 4/8 through 4/10, water temperatures ranged from 34-35 in the morning and 35-37 in the afternoon on the Lower Shore.   From 4/8 through 4/10, interviewed anglers caught 16 Kamloops, 2 Steelhead, and 1 coho and on the Lower Shore.   The spring creel will begin on the Middle Shore on 4/14 and on the Upper Shore on 4/16.   The Knife and French River Traps will be opened to catch fish sometime in the next week depending on water temperatures and flows.   Streams shorewide have high flows with a lot of debris and ice chunks, after the warm air temperatures on Saturday and rain on Sunday.   We do not expect the smelt run to begin until water temperatures exceed 45 degrees overnight for several days in a row, which will most likely not occur for several weeks. One can also read fishing reports updated on the DNR website on Mondays and Fridays by clicking here:  MN DNR Reports   You can also c

Fishing Report: 4-7-11

The DNR spring creel on the lower shore will begin today, Friday, April 8. The spring creel on the middle and upper shore will begin when conditions become appropriate. Today we received teh follow report from the DNR.  Our field Staffer, GL, has been on the water virtually everyday this past week checking out the conditions.  His report estimates that by mid week several of the lower shore rivers should be in good shape to fish.  Next weekend he feels should be a good bet if you are a weekend angler. MN DNR report: On Wednesday, April 6 I drove from the Lester River north to the Temperance River to assess stream conditions. Water temperatures from the Lester to the French were 35-36 degrees; from the Sucker to the Beaver were 34 degrees; and from the Baptism to the Temperance were 33 degrees. The stream channels downstream of the upstream barriers were 75% ice free from the Lester to the French; 50% ice free from the Sucker to the Beaver; and 25% ice from the Baptism to the Tem

Widow Decals - hot of the printer

Show your support with one of our new window decals! We are excited to say that we just received our first batch of Minnesota Steelheader window decals from our printer today.  Our goal is to have them available online over the weekend.  Check out our website in the next 48 hours for how you can get your hands on one.  We will be selling these through our website for a nominal cost.  All proceeds will go towards growing Minnesota Steelheader and our cause.

Adopt-A-River Program moves forward

This past winter, as most of you probably saw, we had a poll on this blog asking for your feedback on which river would be a good fit for Minnesota Steelheader (MS) to Adopt through the MN DNR Adopt-a-River program.  A big thanks to all of you who took the time to vote and/or contact us with your comments and opinions The Poll recently expired and after collecting the data we received a tie with the two highest votes gong to the Sucker River and the Devil Track River.  The Baptism River was a close second. Through the course of the poll we received a variety of comments and opinions as to which river would be the best fit for us.  We received feedback from interest in helping rivers from the Lester River all the way up to the Flute Reed River- a pretty impressive span.  Reiterating what we stated previously, our selection process needed to focus on a few key elements: level of visible trash/pollution, accessibility for a diverse group of volunteers, and overall steelhead habitat.

Do you know your tags?

With the Season just around the corner, now is a good time to brush up on your tag knowledge.  The DNR inserts individual numbered tags at the base of the dorsal fin on hatchery (clipped) and wild steelhead that are caught at the Knife and French river fish traps. They insert grey numbered tags are into steelhead at the Knife River trap and yellow numbered tags into steelhead at the French River trap. The DNR uses these individual numbered tags are to gather information on steelhead movement patterns within Lake Superior, occurrence of repeat spawning, age and growth, and trap efficiency. If you catch a tagged steelhead, leave the tag in the fish and record the number. Report the tag number, along with the date, location, and if the fish was harvested or released to the Lake Superior Fisheries.  With this info you can find when and where the fish was tagged and also the age of the fish. Remember that unclipped steelhead cannot be harvested in Minnesota waters. Kamloops are also