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Gull Lake is a bass fishermen's dream. The lake has a healthy population of 1 to 2 1/2 pound bass. Most bass fishermen quickly find success with a few helpful fishing tips from a Brainerd fishing guide. Wilson and Steamboat bays have good weed growth but they also have the largest resorts. Wilson Bay receives the most pressure from local fishing guides in Brainerd, Minnesota.
Minnesota bass fishing regulations have changed in recent years. Bass fishing previously was not allowed in Minnesota before Memorial Day weekend. New Minnesota rules allow catch-n-release bass fishing before this time. Brainerd fishing guides can now help clients enjoy great early season bass fishing in Brainerd, Minnesota. Spring has always been an exciting time to fish for largemouth bass on Gull Lake. Bass will typically invade the shallows on the lakes in Brainerd, Minnesota shorty after the ice leaves. Many big bass were caught while anglers fished for crappie but fishermen couldn't intentionally fish for bass in Minnesota until the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend. New Minnesota catch-n-release regulations now allow Brainerd fishing guides to pursue largemouth bass two weeks earlier than previous years. This provides visiting anglers the opportunity to extend their Minnesota bass fishing season with catch and release.The best early season bass locations are shallow flats which contain pencil reeds and a southern exposure. Some of the best pre-spawn areas on Gull Lake are located on the west side of Wilson Bay. The sun warms these areas quickly and provides a jumpstart to the Gull Lake food chain. Pay close attention to any dips or depressions in the bottom of the lake on these large flats. Some of the best spring spots are only 2 to 3 feet deeper than the surrounding areas. Largemouth bass will use these locations for both spawning and feeding. Bass will actively cruise any edges in these locations searching for food. The best locations have a combinations of sand, moss, and thick stands of pencil reeds.All Brainerd fishing guides has a favorite lure for springtime bass. Mine is a 3/32 oz. green mushroom jig rigged with 7 inch motor-oil power worm. Use the bow mount trolling motor to cruise slowly through the reeds while fan casting in front of the boat. The lake vegetation is sparse this time of year so there is no need to bury the hook in the worm. Pitch the worm out and let it settle to the bottom. Drag the worm a foot or so across the bottom and them pick up the slack. The water is still cold so do not fish too fast. Most fishermen use too light of a hook. Brainerd fishing guides remember every six pound bass which straighten out a hook. Those memories never leave.
Gull Lake bass will start to move deeper as the sun's elevation increases in the spring. Backside edges of weed beds are key locations in these transitions. Bass take advantage of the abundant food supply these spots provide.Brainerd fishing guides quickly learn to follow seasonal bass migrations to keep their clients on fish throughout the summer. The sun starts low on the horizon each spring in the Brainerd Lakes area but its elevation quickly climbs as summer approaches. The increased sunlight affects the bass and their location on Gull Lake. The additional sunlight pushes bass deeper and Minnesota fishing charter guides must follow. Cover and shade now become more important to bass.Key spring locations are the backside edges of large cabbage bed flats. Cabbage weeds are susceptible to sunlight and quickly wither in water depths less than three feet. This creates a distinctive edge on the shallow side, or backside, of weed beds. These edges are excellent ambush spots for bass. Brainerd fishing guides utilize several techniques to catch largemouth bass in these situations. The downside is that this pattern only works for few weeks. The backside weed bite is great but do not fish memories. The bass are either relating to these locations or they are long gone. My favorite spring bait is a seven inch red shad colored power worm threaded on a lime green colored 5/32 oz. jig with a 3x stout hook. Keep the boat in the cabbage with the trolling motor while casting to the shallower edge. Pitch the bait pass the weed edge and let it settle slowly to the bottom. Work the worm slowly, almost dragging it, back towards the boat. Don't be afraid to let it set on the bottom from time to time. Most strikes occur when the worm enters the weed growth. Set the hook hard and get the fish headed to the surface. Do not let the bass bulldog its way into the weeds. Life is good!
The bass fishing starts to heat up when water temperatures rise past eighty degrees on Gull Lake. Catching 30 to 40 bass is common on half day Gull Lake fishing charters. The best action happens far away from the shoreline in the summer. The best bass fishing occurs when water temperatures break eighty degrees. The warm water environment pushes bass metabolism their highest rates of the season. Summer bass fishing provides consistent action for Brainerd fishing guides. This period usually starts in the middle of July and runs through the third week in August. Fishing clients can expect catch rates of 30 to 40 bass per boat on 1/2 guide day trips. This is Brainerd, Minnesota bass fishing at its finest. Getting away from the heavy boat traffic and other Brainerd fishing guides is one of the keys to catching good bass numbers of Gull Lake. Several of the southern bays, like Wilson Bay, are relatively close to some of Brainerd's largest resorts and therefor receive the most fishing pressure from local bass fishing guides in Brainerd, Minnesota. The main lake weed flats are excellent bass fishing spots in the summer. These flats are further away from these resorts and receive less fishing pressure. The big weed flat north of Gull Point is a great place to start. The flat has several holes and major points. These are prime bass locations in the summer. Search the flat for good stands of cabbage weeds. The best time for searching for good stands of weeds in these locations is on calm weather days. A few well-placed GPS coordinates pay big divides for fishing guides when waves obscure weed beds on windy days. Crank-baits are tough to beat when the water temperatures heat up on Gull Lake. Every Brainerd guide has their favorites but mine are crank-baits with a tight wobble that dive 4 to 6 feet. Largemouth bass have their highest metabolism rate of the summer. It allows them to chase even the fastest baits. This allows Brainerd fishing guides the opportunity to cover large sections of the flat quickly. Position the boat on the outer edge of the weeds while casting shallow. Burn the crank bait back to the boat. Don't be afraid to pause from time to time to let the bait suspend. Hold on tight. The strikes are vicious this time of year.
The bass will move shallow when water temperatures start to drop in September. The ability to follow seasonal migrations is one of the keys to bass fishing. Gull Lake fishing guides can help anglers take the guess work out of fishing in Brainerd, MN.