Tag Archives: fishing

Simple Fishing Tips for Northern MN Fishing

For our final fishing post of the week, I wanted to offer some tips for helping you improve your fishing experience. I gathered information from various websites and experts. Please let me know if you have any more advice you’d like to share with your fellow readers!

Fishing on your vacation…

“One tip that I have to offer is to hire a guide for a half day during the early stages of your vacation so you can learn some tips  and techiniques..and spots!  We normally don’t stop the boat unless we are marking the fish on our Lowrance electronics.” – Dan of Walleyedan’s Fishing Guide Service

Fishing for Walleyes…

“Use Light Line Light (4- and 6-pound-test), thin-diameter lines offer less drag, or resistance, on a lure. This lets a walleye suck it in more easily.

Bounce the Bait When you’re using live bait, McClelland recommends also using a bottom-bouncer rig. Bouncers are L-shaped wires that have a lead weight molded to the shaft. As an angler retrieves the rig, the weight bounces off the bottom and creates slack in the line, which allows the fish to inhale the bait more easily.

Shorten the Stroke Many jig fishermen pump their rods too vigorously, using long vertical strokes that can pull the bait out of a fish’s mouth. Use short lifts instead and you’ll hook more walleyes.

Offer a Bigger Bite Adding a plastic body to a jig also helps by increasing the surface area to which the fish’s sucking force is applied. It may seem counterintuitive, says McClelland, but a slightly bigger bait is easier for the fish to inhale.

Pump a Crank With crankbaits, steady retrieves may hook aggressive walleyes, but a stop-and-go technique is better for deliberate feeders. Once the lure achieves proper depth, lift the rod tip, reel in the slack, and repeat.

Troll With the Flow When the water has a chop, trolling with the waves imparts that necessary slight slack in the line. Also, keep a close eye on your inside planer board as you make a turn; it will give you that small amount of slack that allows for more solid strikes-and more walleyes in the boat.”

-Retrieved directly from:

Fishing for Bass…

“My favorite and most successful method is the crankbait. Others will argue, but I love crankbaits. I have fished all other baits and lures but crankbaits have helped me catch the most fish. It is a simple means of fishing that requires minimal skill. This suits a beginner fine and provides him with the confidence to fish. Fishing mostly with crankbaits has provided me with plenty of experience. Here are some tips:

The simple throwing and retrieving method can become very monotonous and boring, so I played with the crankbait in the water. I did this by varying its speed and how deep it goes by reeling faster or by lowering or raising the pole. I found that in calm clear water the bass preferred a regular steady retrieve with no sudden movements, and in choppy murky water they loved an irregular fast and slow retrieve. You must also experiment with this and see what suites you.

Bass love colorful lures and they seem to hit them more often. I think these lures bother them and so they get mad and attack. I find that casting over and over into an area with bass will always produce an attack. They don’t like the lures bothering them.

Using bait scent has always improved the strikes and I am a firm believer in them.

When you fish with these lures, always try to make them look good in the water and make the bass come after them. You can do this by making them swim as real as possible. This can be frustrating but if you get the skill you will catch big fish. And believe me, practice makes perfect.

I have found that using bright colored lures in muddy water and more natural ones in clear water works well. My biggest bass hit a bright yellow and white crankbait in dark water. I guess he was the bully of the area because the bigger bass always seem to grab these lures.

Bumping these lures against objects in the water attract fish, but you run the chance of getting the lure stuck. This will cause many terrible words coming from your mouth and could cost you money in the end. Be careful where you throw or you will loose your lure. Getting lures into little places is difficult so keep practicing it and you will get it right.”

-Retrieved directly from:

Fishing for Northern Pike…

Pike like to follow. If you will fish for them in shallow waters, you can see where to put your lure. Bring it from behind the fish, slowly, to draw its attention. Watch the way the fish reacts to the lure. Take this reaction and decide from here how to get the fish to strike. Pike will follow right up to the boat, so don’t take your lure out too soon.

Wear polarized sunglasses. Most folks fish for trophy pike in shallow waters… Polarized glasses do more than protect your eyes from the sun’s glare off the water or ice. They allow you to see into the water you are fishing,
making it easy to see which fish you want to try to catch.

Use a strong rod. You need a rod that is medium to heavy action to get the biggest and best Northern Pike. You don’t want one that is a broomstick type; this type will not let you feel the movement of the fish, thus, you won’t know which way best to fight the fish into the boat.

New, heavy test weight line. This should be obvious, but you don’t want to use last year’s line that you used for river trout on a big trophy Northern Pike. You need strong line that is not dry rotted, tangled or damaged by a
season (or more) in your tackle box.”

Retrieved directy from:

Fishing for Perch, Crappies, & Sunnies…

Not every fish you catch has to be a “trophy fish.” Perch, crappies, sunnies are great fun. Actually my favorite fishing memory was catch baby sunnies and throwing them back at an unheard of rate. These three fish, sometimes referred to as panfish can range in size though. You may even snag a “trophy” sunnie if your doing well.

Live bait is the best for panfish like perch, crappies, and sunnies. You can use bait easily found at local bait shops and convenience stores like leeches, night crawlers, wax worms or minnows.

And don’t forget to get your fishing supplies at Mills Fleet Farm!  Walleyedan

Enjoy your outing! Elizabeth

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Posted by on September 2, 2011 in Fishing, Recreation


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A Look into the Life of a Professional Angler

Dan Eigen has taken the name of Walleyedan as he pursues his fishing guide service business.

At Madden’s resort we are fortunate to have a local fishing guide service we can refer our guests to when they are looking for some fishing fun: Walleyedan’s fishing guide service. Walleyedan has written a few guest posts on fishing conditions for us this summer (June 14, July 8, July 15) and now for our week of fishing blog posts, we decided to do a little interview with Walleyedan himself to get a look into the life of a professional angler.

When did you first start fishing?
I started fishing around the age of 5. I grew up in Eden Prairie when it was still somewhat the prairie and I was within walking distance of Round Lake. I spent countless hours there fishing, catching frogs (to use for fishing) and just being a kid. The outdoor living just progressed by the day, week and year and it became my life. I am now 43.

How did you become “Walleyedan”?
I was given the name Walleyedan by a co-worker when I was working in the parks department for the city of Baxter. I had been out fishing (and caught a load of walleyes) with Bud and his son a week or so prior to setting up and email account at the city. I asked him what my address should be and he, without hesitation said “Walleyedan”. The rest is history!

I enjoy hunting for walleyes but I just like to put people on fish period, no matter what the species.

What is your favorite part of your job as a fishing guide?
The best part of my job is being outdoors and meeting every type of person on the face of this earth.  Of course there are pressures with the job but most days I can handle them and as the years march on it seems to get a
little easier to handle the “tough days.”

What fishing opportunities do you provide to Madden’s guests and the Brainerd Lakes area?
Whether you are a first time fisher or a veteran angler we will provide you with the trip you are looking for.  We do fish with a lot of families and will cater to what they are looking to get out of their trip.  We can start with the pan fish and try to graduate to the bass, pike and even walleye if that is the plan.  If our guests want to only pursue the elusive walleye we are totally game for that.  During the summer months, the best approach seems to be to fish for walleye’s for a couple hours and if the “bite” is on, great if not we will just try to get the rod bending.  Gull Lake does offer a wide variety of game fish and there are days you might catch a few different species.  If the guest would like to keep some fish we will clean and package them up.  The walleye “bite” seems to pick up in mid-August and run right through ice-up (with a slow period mixed in around the fall
turnover).  Turnover usually occurs in mid-October when the cooler (more dense) water sinks and mixes with the rest of the water column. I have open water guided as late as December 13th!  But two weeks later we were
ice fishing.

Thank you Dan for your service to Madden’s guests and for sharing your story! Elizabeth


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Fishing in the Brainerd Lakes Area 101

A the name implies, the Brainerd Lakes Area is home to many lakes. And when there are lakes, there are fish. This week in our blog, we are happy to tell you about the many fishing opportunities available around the Brainerd Lakes area including our friend and fishing guide, Walleyedan. But first, how to get started fishing.

What you need:

Earth worms are great bait for this area's fish. You can purchase them from local bait shops or dig up your own!

  • Minnesota Fishing License. Fishing licenses are available at Madden’s Marina and Tennis & Corquet Club. You can also purchase them at many convenience stores, gas stations, and at Mills Fleet Farm.
  • Fishing pole. Fishing pole rentals are available at Madden’s Marina. Or you can purchase your own at local retailers or bait shops. Prices for purchasing a pole can begin as low as $10 or $15.
  • Bait. Fishing bait varies. It will depend on many factors including the type of fish you are trying to catch, whether you want live bait or synthetic bait, and your experience level. For first timers, I suggest using earth worms from a bait shop. If you are not up for hooking a worm, try using a simple bait recommended by a sales associate or frozen corn.

Fishing Locations

The great thing about fishing is that you don’t have to own a boat to do it. Fishing is a pastime that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and skill levels. Here are a few ideas for locations to get you started.

  • A Bridge. Often times in small towns, bridges become a hotspot for fishermen and women. You will get to enjoy the view of the lake as you cast off from the bridge.
  • A Dock. Many public docks allow visitors to fish from them. Or if you have a friend with a dock, you can pull up a lawn chair and sit back and relax while you fish. Madden’s resort has several docks available for our guests’ use.
  • On a Boat. Whether you own or rent a boat, fishing can be great fun on a boat because you are able to maneuver into different areas of the lake. I suggest dropping anchor in a spot surrounded by weeds or grass. The fish like to hide there! Be careful though to not get grass in your boat’s propeller.

Good luck anglers, Elizabeth

**Share your favorite fishing hotspots with all of our readers by commenting below**

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Posted by on August 29, 2011 in Fishing, Local Tidbits, Recreation


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Fishing Conditions: July 15, 2011

Gull Lake is bursting at the seams with baitfish!  There must have been an awesome hatch and I do believe this makes the walleye “bite” a little tough. Bass, pan fish and pike never seem to turn down a meal and this is holding true.  We are catching a lot of fish (bass, rock bass, pan fish, pike and some walleyes).  If you would just like some rod bending action, hold the boat in 15 feet and work the edge of the weeds with a minnow (jig it, Lindy Rig it or slip bobber it!), you will have plenty of action. Wilson Bay is always a safe bet for this type of action.

Until next time, Walleyedan


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Fishing Conditions: July 8, 2011

We just got off the waters of Gull Lake after another fun, productive trip. The walleye action has been tough the last week to 10 days but we have switched our approach and have started to just “catch”!  We pitched Gopher Tackle mushroom head jigs (yellow) and yellow chartruse shade 3″ Gulp Alive minnows up into the cabbage weeds (8-16′). We caught a couple of nice walleyes, some northerns, a bunch of rock bass, quite a few largemouth, a crappie and some bluegills.  Lots of action!  The water temperature at the surface is around 77 degrees.

Until next time, Walleydan


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Results from Camp Confidence’s Tournaments

Camp Confidence’s Annual Golf and Fishing Fundraiser Tournaments took place over the weekend. Here are the results.

38th Annual Golf Classic:

1st Place: Bremer Bank Team: Brad Holland, Mike
Riley, Joel Clough, Justin Heitkamp

2nd Place: Team Drytech: Kevin Johnson, Tom
Carney, Curt Bennett, Jason Severson

3rd Place: WW Thompson Team: Brett Thompson,
Derek, Dan & Scott

Closest to Pin #2 Women-Pat Alrichter
Closest to Pin #2 Men-Chris Quisberg

Closest to Pin #14 Women-Rox Thompson
Closest to Pin #14 Men-Charlie Mills

Longest Drive #10 Women-Pam Minden
Longest Drive #13 Men-Team Drytech

Longest Putt #18 Men-Regi Clow
Longest Putt #18 Women-Ruth Tiedeman

Skin on hole #10-Kevin Doyle’s Team

28th Annual Fishing Tournament

Lunker Awards:
Bass Lunker: Boat #7, Bill Sherck (Guide), Rob Swenda, Karen Swenda – 4lbs, 1oz

A Big Catch. Photo by Pam Sachs

Walleye Lunker: Boat #22, Walleye Dan Eigen (Guide), Shelly Eigen, Ike Eigen – 5lbs, 10oz
Northern Lunker: Boat #27, Dennis Mackendanz (Guide), Diane Abbett, Jane Roehl – 13lbs, 12oz

Bass Awards:
1st Place: Boat #36, LeRoy Ras (Guide), Fran Ras, Lauren Ras – 8lbs, 11oz
2nd Place: Boat #11, David Meyer Jr. (Guide), Matt Sunquist, Parker Sunquist – 7lbs, 6oz
3rd Place (tie): Boat #8, Brian Hansen (Guide), Ken Phad, Dick Jacobson and
Boat #30, Bill Mathis (Guide), Michelle Mathis – 6lbs, 14 oz

Walleye Awards:
1st Place: Boat #4, Gary Roach (Guide), Nick Adams, Clark Zard – 9lbs, 5oz
2nd Place: Boat #22, Walleye Dan Eigen (Guide), Shelly Eigen, Ike Eigen – 8lbs, 15oz
3rd Place: Boat #3, Al Lindner (Guide), Jack Norqual, Ron Ess – 7lbs, 8oz

Northern Awards:
1st Place: Boat #27, Dennis Mackendanz (Guide), Diane Abbett, Jane Roehl – 21lbs, 10oz
2nd Place: Boat #28, Gary Pearson (Guide), Dwanne Winters, Ron Anderson – 15lbs, 8oz
3rd Place: Boat #33, Aaron Schroeder (Guide), Gene Debusk, Lance Diekman – 12lbs, 10oz

Mixed Bag Awards:
1st Place: Boat #7, Bill Scherck (Guide), Rob Swenda, Karen Swenda – 15lbs, 1oz
2nd Place: Boat #37, Rod Buckingham (Guide), Jason Rasinski, Jerry Adams – 10lbs, 6oz
3rd Place: Boat #12, Todd Bollig (Guide), Travis Grossman, Sandy Smith – 9lbs, 10oz

Thanks for letting Madden’s host again this year. Congratulations to all of the winners and thank you for supporting Camp Confidence. Elizabeth


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64+ in Fishing Fundraiser

64+ boats wait at Madden's boat launch to being the Camp Confidence Fishing Tournament. Photo by Pam Sachs.

64 registered boats and a few more launched at 8 am for the annual Camp Confidence fishing tournament fundraiser this morning.

While the fishermen and women were out, much work went on behind the scenes to prepare for their return. Volunteer staff photographer, Pam Sachs, was clicking away the whole weekend. Madden’s staff and Camp Confidence volunteers worked together to set up for the evening cook-out and awards ceremony.

A Big Catch. Photo by Pam Sachs

Results to follow tomorrow.

**Did you enjoy your weekend at the Camp Confidence Fundraiser? We want to hear about it! Comment or email at**
Until Next Time, Elizabeth

Camp Confidence Volunteer prepares scoreboard


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