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September Walleye Fishing

We watched the end of the weigh-in (via live video) for the FLW event on Leech Lake yesterday. After a couple of days of hefty wind, it finally calmed down, but so did the fishing. A whole bunch of very good walleye anglers had trouble finding those elusive unders. Chris Gilman ended up winning it by coming home with two fish weighing nearly 8 pounds. Terry Filkins couldn’t quite hang on to his lead, even though he came in with a nice 6 pound 9 ounce over. Pat Byle made up for blanking on Friday by coming in with the best weight of the day to pin down third place. FLW Walleye Angler of the Year Paul Meleen weighed one nice over to finish in fourth just a few pounds off the lead.

Keep in mind that Leech Lake has unique slots. You can’t keep anything in-between 18 and 26 inches. So when you catch an “over”, you’ve got a pretty impressive fish. And these guys were finding them. That’s pretty good walleye fishing. The big hogs were clinging to the bottom for the most part and it sounds like the favorite presentation was a red tail on a lindy rig… super slow.

After watching that, junior and I got the itch to drop the boat in Lake Bemidji. So we blew the leaves out, piled the gear in and headed out for some evening fishing.

We weren’t looking to hunt too hard, so we tied on the shad raps and started pulling through the same spots we were on just a month ago when we fished our last night of league. We managed to find a few walleyes hanging out in 10 – 12 feet. Most were small, but we kept a few for the freezer. After sunset we moved north to our mid-lake flat and managed to find a nice 18 incher (above) and 19 incher (below).

After we hauled in this last fish the bite shut off. The moon was rising higher in the night sky and the water was dead calm. We made our way toward the landing and called it a night at about 9:00.

We are heading into that time of year when ducks and deer take priority over walleyes, so it was nice to get out on a beautiful fall evening to scare up a few walleyes. If we can get a night or two like that in October we might have to make a few more trips out to see if we can get into some big fish.

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