Hopefully this is my last comments on Gunflint Trail ice out for this season. Gunflint, Seagull, Magnetic and Loon Lakes are out for sure. We also asssume that Saganaga, Little Gunflint and North Lakes are out due to the recent winds but I can't find anyone who has actually been on the lakes. The Mid-Gunflint Trail lakes are all very rotten. Rain this week has turned them black. Today we are getting a strong northwest wind which will probably take many of them out. If you want to fish in the mid-Trail area, call ahead to check the ice conditions on a specific lake.
As everyone gets ready to start fishing, one of the long-time guides in the area told me his favorite techniques for walleye fishing at this time of year. His advice is to use a Llindy rig with any kind of live bait. Troll very slowly (or back-troll) in 4-8 feet of water along a windy, shallow shore. Over the years this has been one of his most successful methods.
If you are fishing on the border lakes of the Gunflint Trail, remember that the Ontario walleye fishing season does not open until May 16th. The lake trout season in Ontario does not open until May 23rd. Also there is a fishing sanctuary with no fishing until June 1st at the falls where the Granite River empties into Saganaga Lake and at the rapids where Little North Lake empties into Little Gunflint Lake. Finally, you cannot use live bait unless you can prove it was bought in Ontario. To be current on all the Canadian regulations, ask for a copy of "Fishing Ontario 2008-2009" when you buy your Ontario fishing license.