Kevin Winkler

Born and raised in Todd County, Minn., Kevin Winkler was brought up living the life of a outdoorsman. He loves fishing and hunting and now runs a guide service. He offers fall combo fishing and hunting trips and does some photography on the side. He will talk fishing or hunting with anyone, anytime.

Posts about Fishing

Not much time left

Posted by: Kevin Winkler Updated: August 21, 2009 - 6:51 AM
  I'm still taking pledges for the 24 Hour Fish-A-Thon. No amount is too small, and this is my desperate attempt at raising more funds to do what I can to help protect our waters. I have been sending out emails and letters to everyone I know. The sad part is that I'm getting very little response back from anyone. I have a huge network of outdoor enthusiast and I figured more people would like to get on board with this. But it really does amazes me at how very few people are willing to do anything about it.  Zebra Mussels are spreading like wild fire and we are the ones doing the damage.

  I have donated 6 four hour trips and countless hours trying to pull together just a few more dollars for a good cause. If you have a little time on your hands please read a little more about the program and what it is I am doing. Here is the link to Recycled Fish and the 24 Hour Fish-A-Thon. I'll be picking the six fishers on September first who will be fishing with me. Steve Grossman from has sponsored a slot and will be giving away his 4 hour trip to some lucky kid on September 13th at the big event at the hunt club called  Hunting Experience weekend. There is still time. If you love fishing and would like the chance to fish Lake Osakis with me, make a small pledge today and I'll toss your name in the hat for one of the trips still open. And remember ... No amount is too small. You can get in for less than the cost of a bottle of soda. 

  If you win a trip and choose not to go, I have several kids in the area who are willing to do the time on your behalf. All donations are tax deductible threw Recycled Fish.

Call me today at 320-594-0060 or

Public access etiquettes

Posted by: Kevin Winkler Updated: August 6, 2009 - 11:23 AM
  For many people getting your boat in and out of the water is a snap. For others, things never seem to go very well. How many of you have ever sat in line at the ramp watch someone struggle at every attempt to just get their boat to the water. I've often wondered how they would ever get the boat back out of the water with so many troubles just getting it to the water. Things don't have to be so difficult. Sometimes just offering to help out might get you on the water a little quicker. Most days when it's my turn in line I can have my boat off the trailer and the truck parked in under 3 minuets, and 5 to load it and get it out of the way of others. I've spent more than my share of time watching people struggle to just get the boat backed down to the water only to watch them unload the truck into the boat. Many times holding up the rest of the line for more than 15 minuets at a wack.

 Some of the small steps I take at home before I even head to the lake make my launch time go so smooth. For starters, I have my cooler with bait in the boat. If I stop for bait and snacks, it gets loaded right away so I don't have to do it at the access. Things like jackets or camera gear that I might need to load get loaded in the parking area before I get in line for the ramp, and that is where I check to see that my plug is in place and my straps and/or tarp are removed. I know ahead of time that I don't have to get in someone else's way to do these things.

  Lets talk about backing up a trailer. Number one on the list is Mirrors! Think about it for a second, Semi truck drivers that have sleepers on their big rigs don't have to open their doors or drive with half of their body out the window to see where they need to get that 53 foot trailer backed down a tight alley to a loading dock. And they don't have the option of climbing half way in the back seat to see out a rear window. They do everything from the two side mirrors. You can ask anyone of them and they will tell you how good they were at backing up a trailer when they first started. They didn't learn how to do it over night, and they did not use the public boat ramp as a practice area either. Chances are they got most of their practice at home or in a vacant parking lot clear of all other traffic. Over steering is probably the biggest problem most of us have had when it comes to going backward with a trailer. Start out with one hand and grip the wheel and don't let go. If you have to go all the way around once when you started out strait in line with where you were headed, you've already started to over steer. Practice using your side mirrors at home without a trailer, and once you can back up without sticking your head out the window, or over the seat, add the trailer and start over. Keep one hand on the wheel and your next time out, you can spend more time on the water and less time on the ramp.

Back to the basics (Part 2)

Posted by: Kevin Winkler Updated: July 17, 2009 - 10:57 PM
 Today was the day. I had a real hard time keeping my mind off the walleye's that I knew were not far from where we were. But today I was to stay focused on with whom and what with, rather than what for. I dusted off those spoons I talked about in part one of this topic. "Back to the basics"  As we motored along the weed edges I found myself looking for the weeds with my eyes rather than relying on my electronics. I played the game much like my father did over 30 years ago. My Co-pilot and company for the day was my stepson Dylan. Still reminding me he is "Big" Dylan and not little Dylan as so many people call him. He turned 6 on the 6th of this month, and my goal today was to give him the dreams I once had after a all afternoon on the water playing with the pike.
For me, it ended up being much more than I expected. I went to the lake with a quest to see if those old spoon's would work just as good as they used to. Needless to say, I was expecting a little less from them than what we did find. The action was pretty good. Way more missed than landed, but I remember that happening the same to me over 30 years ago. Countless short battles with the fish winning the fight with a short run into the weeds. Six of them lost the battle, and will now find their way into the fryer for lunch tomorrow. 

 I do not think Dylan will loose track of where all of those spoon's are. They will not make it back to the junk box on a shelf in the garage. They have a new home in his tackle box. I just might have to borrow some from him the next time we are on the water.

What can you do about invasive species

Posted by: Kevin Winkler Updated: July 15, 2009 - 10:37 AM
 Over the past couple years we've been seeing it more and more. I don't think there is a way to stop invasive species, but we can slow them down. I've been wanting to make an impact myself. I wanted to do more about it. No matter how many times I pressure wash my trailer and boat after I leave a lake, no mater how many times I pull the plug on my boat, drain the live well and dump out my bait. It just never seemed as if I was doing enough. That's when I heard about Recycled Fish, and a event called the 24 Hour Fish-A-Thon. Right off the bat I jumped in head first. I figured here is my chance to make a bigger impact on the spread of invasive species and give others the chance to help out as well.

  You can click on the links above if you want to know more about the program. One of the things that I needed to do to get signed up to fish this event, was to provide my concerns and fish for a cause. Along with that I was asked to find a partner to fish with me and help document the fishing. I gave it some thought and decided to get the people who help with donations to go fishing with me. The top six sponsors will have their pick of times they can go on a 4 hour guided trip in the 24 hour time frame. Highest  paying sponsor gets first pick and the lowest of the top six gets last pick. Should the sponsor choose not to go fishing, I have several kids in the area that would love the chance to go and fish on the sponsors behalf. So here is your chance to make a difference. You can email your pledge to me at or if you would like to make your donation for a tax deduction, contact Teeg at  and tell him you want to sponsor me and the dollar amount you wish to donate. He has all of the Tax ID. info for you as well. Anyone can make a difference. You can sponsor $1.00 or $10,000.00 no donation is too big or too small when it comes to our resources.

Hunting for new water.

Posted by: Kevin Winkler Updated: July 7, 2009 - 11:32 PM
  If there is one thing I don't enjoy, that would be combat fishing. Sure put a little money on the line, and I might be willing to rub rails with other boats if they want to. But for the most part, I like to get out and away from the most popular areas on the lake. I like to fish away from the crowds if at all possible. That is why I try and spend several days on the water each year on different lakes, or just different areas of bigger lakes looking for new ground, or is that water. I was out for 6 hours on Monday looking over a lake I have been spending a little more time on this year. For the most part, I had my fishing pole set in the rod holder and was not looking at it very much, I could have just as well never even put the line in the water. My eyes were glued to the electronics.  I like to look for little spots not far from other known areas. For example not 50 yards away from a known reef there might be another small pile of rocks just barely noticeable on sonar. Maybe a bed of clams. something that changes the bottom, but is overlooked by most fisherman.  Most times I learn something new when out there marking new bottom not listed on any maps.  Here's one for you ... How many of you fished a spot for hours with the sonar lit up with fish trying to figure out what you might have in your box to offer them that might change their mind to eat. You try every form of live bait known to man, presented every way known as well, heck you try spinners, jigs, bobbers, spoons, but those fish just don't want to eat. Maybe it's that cold front? Maybe you're thinking it's the moon? (Back to Monday) As I zig-zaged on and off the edges and across the flats looking for these hidden little spot on the spot on the spot areas I was watching the other boats on the lake as well. everyone seemed to be moving from one place to the next like a cake walk.(Add music here) I eased up to one of those areas and dropped the camera down, set the auto-pilot, and watched the screen for details with my finger on the WPT button ... Suckers! hundreds of them! plastered to the bottom of one of the nicest rock piles in the lake. I eased back and forth marking the start and end of the pile on the GPS knowing this is also home to walleyes. I've caught them there. But it was right then and there that I realized that I did get some satisfaction from those fish. They did not even have to stretch my line to do it. I grinned at thinking how many people were fishing those fish thinking they were walleye. I left them alone uninterrupted for the time being. But I am wondering how a big gob of worms laying on the bottom in 23 foot of water might work ... If it's as much fun in the summer as it is in the spring, I see a boat full of kids tormenting those fish real soon.


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