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09/27/2021 02:15PM  
I’m new to fall fishing so I need some help and need a lot of advice!
Where should we be looking for, and what bait should we use for walleye, crappie, smallmouth, and 40” northern?
My main goal is a 40” northern, catch and release of course.
Secondary goal is walleye.
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09/28/2021 08:39AM  
There are many expert fishermen and women on this site -- I am not one of them! However, think "shallow" as a lot of species tend to move to the shallows as the lakes cool. I understand walleye move to weed beds in the early fall. A Bagley Weedless Spoon with a suitable plastic grub is not a bad option for walleyes. Inline spinners, red/white daredevls, and jointed raps that run along the surface are options for pike. I'll let others chime in with better suggestions. Happy hunting!
member (9)member
09/28/2021 01:21PM  
Which end of Basswood will you be going into? It will make a big difference whether you are going in through Fall lake and intend to fish Jackfish and Pipestone versus if you are going in on the east end through Moose, Newfound, and Sucker.
09/29/2021 11:13AM  
We will be coming in from Fall Lake, so will fish Pipestone and Jackfish Bay areas.
09/29/2021 11:13AM  
2x post!
member (9)member
09/30/2021 10:00AM  
Wish I could help more but I am not familiar at all with the west side of Basswood.
09/30/2021 12:42PM  
Thanks h&d that’s good info.
Anyone else out there? Don’t be shy, I’m not that good of a fisherman!
09/30/2021 04:10PM  
There are some islands about half way up Pipestone that have done well, especially if there is some current flowing through. Lewis Narrows is another good area. Looks for moving water - so probably around portages or where streams drain into the larger lake. I have only been through the west end once or twice but have done well. Good luck!
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09/30/2021 07:45PM  
Northern Pike
A northern pike will try to eat something 1/3 of its size. When fishing up on Kawnipi Lake in the Quetico, I was reeling in a 16” walleye and out of nowhere a monstrous pike latched onto the fish and started stripping line off my reel as the battle took place for the walleye. The pike eventually let go and all that remained was a badly scarred walleye. The next walleye I hooked, the same incident repeated itself with the pike. It must have been waiting for another fish from under the canoe. This time I let him have it for awhile before I closed the bail on my reel. I had this huge fish on the line and when I tried to reel it in it made a couple of strong runs before my line was scissored off.
This is why I like to use big baits like the bullfrog colored Lucky 13. This lure has produced more pike over 40” than any other lure I have ever used in the Quetico or the BWCA. The hooks which come with this lure are not the best so I suggest if you purchase this lure change them out with some quality trebles. I always use a titanium leader when fishing specifically for pike, it saves a lot of lures, it is stronger than steel, doesn’t kink up like steel, and it has a smaller diameter. Use 20 or 30 pound braided line when fishing this lure; it gives the lure more pop with the non-stretch line compared to mono.
Other big lures for big northern pike will include the 4 ½ inch red and white Daredevle spoons, any of the large musky type inline spinners with the big buck-tails like the Mepp’s Musky Killer, and soft plastic jerk baits in the 5 to 9” range in some type of pearl colored variation.
Fish the points in the fall. Points are highly productive for all fish, along with surrounding flats. Weed beds next to drop offs seem to always have some pike lurking around. Fish the edges of the weeds. Areas between islands called “saddles” can be a productive area to focus on during the fall period. Another great location is moving water. Fish water flows of any size, from a river, to a creek, to a trickle coming into the lake. You can always find fish of any species hovering around moving water. Try to remember, if you want to catch big fish, fish big lakes. I know big fish can found in smaller lakes, but the majority of trophy sized fish are swimming in big water. A 45” pike came out of the Basswood depths to suck up my Lucky 13 on a mid September day. I made a cast as far out as possible into the lake while standing on an island point during a canoe seat break. As with most floating topwater lures, I let it settle for a brief time before I think about moving it. While staring at the lure bobbing in the slight rolls of the lake, this Loch Ness monster type head slowly came straight up out of the water and fully engulfed the plastic bullfrog with nary a wrinkle on the surface. I truly couldn’t believe what I had just witnessed. I reeled up the slack and set the hook. It came in like a log at first but when it reached about 10 feet from shore it finally realized it was hooked and it did not want to be hooked. Some serious hard runs and reel drag squealing took place before it was captured. I was glad to be on shore and not in a canoe when landing this fish!

10/01/2021 03:05PM  
I was in the Lewis narrows area in mid September, caught 2 large Northerns 40+ and some huge smallmouth. We also went up to Basswood falls and had a blast fishing in the rapids from shore (the bass were hiding beneath the rocks in the rapids and were just annihilating anything you could throw.

I caught the two big Northerns on Johnsons Crappie Buster (yes, it's a small lure but fish of all sizes and types love it for some reason. Also caught several Bass on it.

We caught several bass and Northerns on top water lures as well (poppers and zara spook type baits. Fishing was slow during the day, you had to be out there just before sunrise 6:00-9:00 and then later in the day before sunset. If you don't fish those timeframes, fishing will be more difficult.

I recommend to fish the shorelines and have some fun. Walleye fishing was a lot slower.
10/08/2021 11:27AM  
10/08/2021 11:28AM  
Thanks for the info.
We fished the saddles, points, and sunken islands. The sunken islands aren’t sunken this year however.
We got as far north as the five star campsite on the west side.
Caught a lot of nice crappie and approx. 15” eyes. But didn’t do so well with northern and smallmouth, caught a few nice ones but not very many. Biggest northern was 9 lbs.
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