Regional kayak fishing reports from Kansas, Missouri, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Iowa by YakAngler.com Pro Staff members and the community.
Winter has set in for us here in the Midwest. One major blizzard has passed through, and a couple light snows have provided for a white wonderland. The lakes are frozen over, with many of them having 5-6” of ice which provides for some dandy fishing through auger made fishing holes. I tried it myself last week, and found it quite interesting. Some friends invited me out to an ice-covered pond just outside of Lincoln, NE, and it didn’t take long for fish to appear from the depths below.
With an incredibly warm November there was an urge to keep getting outdoors and fish rather than storing equipment for the winter. The drought stricken lakes and ponds are still very fishable but most structure is above the water line these days. The fish seem to be hunkering around anything they can find for a winter roost and once the fishermen locate them it’s harvest time! It takes much more patience this time of year when retrieving the lure of choice. Although the days are “balmy” and warm the water has cooled with the nighttime drops in temperature to the low 30’s most of the time. A very slow retrieval will trigger an occasional fish to take a chance.
Some guys are pulling out there ice gear hoping for some freezing temps in the next few weeks that will ice over most ponds and smaller lakes. The upper Midwest is notorious for its fantastic ice fishing. But for now with lots of open water there is still plenty of opportunity to catch multiple species of fish. Despite the numerous cold fronts and dwindling daylight, those days in between that warm things up can get the Largemouth Bass going in the backwaters.
Yes, the days are starting to shorten and the night temps are steadily dropping bringing cooler water after those grueling hot days we have experienced all summer. The fish are starting to congregate in the shallower water which are chock full of baitfish! Your kayak can get you into those open areas among the water vegetation that has engulfed the shallows most of the summer. You can catch huge Largemouth in just a foot of water and sometimes, even a lurking Muskie or Northern.