Chris Schultz

Outdoors Column

By Chris Schultz

Winsted-Lester Prairie Journal & Howard Lake-Waverly Herald, Minn.

April 3, 2000

Fishing the Crow River

Walleye, northern pike, bass, and panfish are the mainstay for most Minnesota anglers.

Walleye is the king, unless you're a muskie angler, and the other fish fall into order after that.

That is the case, unless you're a river angler.

On many of our state's smaller rivers, not counting trout streams, anglers cast for a much wider variety and are willing to reel in just about whatever bites.

On the Crow River, just a few years ago, "whatever" usually meant carp, bullheads, suckers, northern pike, an occasional walleye and maybe even a crappie or two. Carp, including some lunkers, and bullheads were the mainstay.

Today, many anglers consider walleye to be the mainstay on the river, and may even get a little annoyed if a carp nabs their bait. Those anglers are also catching everything from carp, bullheads, walleyes, northerns, or catfish, to even an occasional smallmouth bass.

Last fall, a few areas of the South Fork of the Crow River produced smallmouth bass on a somewhat frequent basis.

In angling terms, you could say the preference on the Crow River is variety.

According to information from a 1980 stream survey on the south fork of the river and a wide array of reports from anglers, anglers fishing the Crow River could expect to catch walleye, northern pike, smallmouth bass, black crappie, green sunfish, bluegill, catfish, black bullhead, yellow bullhead, carp, white sucker, and, I'm sure, a few other species not mentioned.

If variety is what you're looking for in a fishing adventure, the Crow River is the ticket, and a stretch of the river is probably not too far from your home.

Outdoor notes

  • The Lester Prairie Sportsmen's Club will meet tonight at 7 p.m. at the clubhouse.
  • Last week, a few of my friends ran into a skunky mess. In an effort to convince a skunk to leave the interior confines of a garage, they created a stink they will remember for at least a few weeks yet.
  • Skunks have come out in full force this spring and it seems their numbers are very high. If you run into a skunk, the best bet is to just stay away. If one waddles into your garage by accident, open the door and be very, very patient.
  • The Winsted Sportsmen's Club will host its annual He/She Mixer Friday, April 7 at the Blue Note in Winsted, beginning at 8 p.m.
  • The trapshooting season at the Lester Prairie Sportsmen's Club is just around the corner. Practice shooting begins Wednesday, April 12, and league shooting Wednesday, April 19.
  • Firearms safety courses offered by local sportsmen's clubs and the DNR will be underway very soon. Call the local community education department for more information.
  • There's a lot going on in the outdoors and at the state legislature right now. For more information, get online and go to where you will find the link to the DNR's site and other outdoor related sites.
  • Joe's Sport Shop in Howard Lake and Lil' Angie's Bait and Tackle near Lester Prairie now offer electronic licensing through the DNR.
  • Take some time to watch spring happen and enjoy it.

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