Time to crank it up again!

Sorry for being gone so long!  I shut things down after the Championships and focused on deer hunting.  We did get out on Mille Lacs a few times in Oct., but the lake was not open to targeting walleye.

It is now that time a year again to start putting together the tournament calendar for the 2017 season.  The hard water is officially here, but obviously proceed with extreme caution.

Now is a great time to visit Tom’s Tackle for your ice fishing needs.  Clicking on the image along the right side of this page will take you directly to their site.

They are home to the pink Charmer, but they also have an assortment of tackle that any serious Ice angler needs to take a look at.

Things are also booking up fast at Wheelers Point for the winter season.  If you are looking for one of the best ice fishing experiences you should be calling Wheelers Point Resort.  Their prices are competitive, their service is awesome, and they have any type of package or sleeper house to meet your needs.

 

 

Tight Lines and I will be posting more frequently from now right on through the 2017 season.

 

Tight Lines

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MTT Championships

Go Time……About 3.5 hours and we hit the trail to LOTW to pre-fish.

BAM!

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BWCA & MTT on Winnie

It is good to finally be home after being gone for about the last ten days.  The first leg of the trip was a family trip to the Boundary Waters with family and friends.  This was my wife’s, son’s and daughter’s first time camping and canoeing.  With that being said, the trip went absolutely great.  We had good weather and enjoyed quality time with the friends and family we deeply care for.  I won’t spend much time talking about the fishing.  If you have ever fished from a canoe with a 4 and 7 year old you will fully understand why :) We did camp in Grassy Lake for a night, which afforded us the opportunity to clean up about 30 giant sunfish.

BWCA 1BWCA 3

After the family fun I hit the road to fish in the 13th and 14th stops on the Minnesota Tournament Trail.  These were the final 2 single day tournaments of the year.  I arrived at Tony and Jill’s on Thursday night.  Tony has been a co-angler of mine on the trail for the last several years.  Their place on Leech Lake would be base camp for the pre-fishing and tournament.  I feel very blessed to have such great friends that allow me to invade their little piece of paradise for a few days each year.  A special thank you to Jill who helped us with taillights that were out, getting bait, cooking meals, and making sure we had what we needed each day.  Greatly Appreciated!

We hit the water on Friday for a day of pre-fishing.  The day was a bit of a grind but we did find a few of the humps that were loaded up with fish.  We certainly didn’t whack and stack, but we also felt confident in that we had a couple of solid spots where the old marble eyes had the feedbag on.

We blasted out of the harbor at Denny’s on Saturday morning with nothing to slow us to our first spot.  The wind was little to nothing and the sun was high, but it didn’t stop us from having a great bite on Winnie.  We decided to pull bouncers, blades, and leeches on the deep humps and we had piled up 20 eyes by days end.  The key for us was a perch pattern blade trolled with a 2 oz bouncer at 1.3 mph.  Six of the 20 went in the box, two were smaller fish, and the rest were in the 18 to 23 inch slot.  We didn’t get the fish we needed to crack the top ten, but an inch or less on several fish would have done the trick.  We had four 22’s and several a bit over 18 that were unfortunately dumped right back into the lake.  I was disappointed that we only ended up 22nd out of 60, but I felt good about the great day of fishing we had.  Literally a game of inches.

Big WInnie 2Big winnie 1

After a few beverages and some brats we headed for the best resort on Leech Lake – Huddles.  It is always a pleasure to see Roy and Kay and this is a place you should check out if you are looking for a family oriented resort on Leech.  http://www.huddlesresort.com/  Roy and Kay do it right, and may be some of the best resort owners one could find.  I also had the pleasure that evening to meet many of Tony and Jill’s friends.  Good people, good times, and a pleasure to meet all of them.  One of these fine individuals is Randy Eastvold, operator and owner of Red Tail Tackle.  I enjoyed my walleye conversation with Randy as he is one of the best guides there is on Leech Lake.  I don’t chase Muskies, but it is also important to mention for those that do that Red Tail Tackle produces the best tackle on the market.  As the peak of Muskie season approaches, do yourself a favor and check out what he has to offer.  Every Muskie Head I know raves about what he has to offer.  https://www.facebook.com/Red-Tail-Tackle-1190409127651815/

Saturday night the Leech Lake area absolutely got pounded by storms.  We headed to the same deep hump only to have one bite in the first hour of fishing.  The storms made for a tough bite on Sunday.  We ended up leaving the deep hump and headed for the bars in the spots that had offered success in the past.  We traded the bouncers and blades for trolling some crawler harnesses.  We managed to scratch out 4 of 6 and ended up in 17th on day two.  Unfortunately we lost several fish that would have filled our basket, and we were forced to put back on 18.25 inch fish that would have made a huge difference for us.

Our goal was top ten both days, and unfortunately it didn’t happen either day.  However, we fished well with the conditions we had to work with.  A few breaks on either day and we were right where we wanted to be.  There is a ton of forage in this system and we found the fish to be very fat and healthy.

Smooth Move Seats The wind had Big Winnie rolling good on Sunday.  Thank god for our Smooth Moves Seats.  These are the best suspensions on the market and you are making a mistake if they are not in your boat.  Contact me if you have questions, want a test ride, or want to receive a 10 % discount.

http://www.smoothmovesseats.com/

 

Red SpinnerTom’s Tackle spinners took 90% of our fish.  Their color patterns and quality are 2nd to none.  A great time of year to be pulling jewelry.

http://www.tomstackleinc.com/

 

CONTOUR ELITE

I have literally only fished lake Winnie one weekend a year for the last three years.  I can’t even imagine learning a new system without having these lakes on my computer.  These downloads give you every detail that the chip in your boat gives you and more.  Do yourself a favor and take the time to really look at where the break lines, weed lines, and transitions actually are.  Contact me if you want to receive a 20% discount.

http://contourelite.com/

 

 

All that remains is the two day event in August, followed by the Championships on LOTW.

Hammer Down!

chris_meisch@rdale.org

 

 

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Lake of the Woods Recap

L-5Dad and I departed from Ramsey last Tuesday to start pre-fishing for the MTT Lake of the Woods tournament.  The ride up there is always one filled with anticipation, as we know what kind of fish that Lake can turn out if conditions are right.

We arrived at Wheelers Point Resort in plenty of time L-3for dinner, good conversation and a pre-game bump.  As always, Wheelers did not disappoint.  Good service, good food, and accommodations that are second to none.

As always, I spent a good amount of time on Contour Elite preparing for our pre-fishing.  On a body of water this big it is almost an essential tool to properly prepare yourself.  We hit the water on Wednesday morning and headed West from the river to our favorite reefs.   This time of year guys are primarily pulling blades, jigging with frozen shiners, or starting in with some crankbaits.  Our primary plan was to find numbers and check some of our big fish spots that have produced for us in the past.  The first three spots kicked out over 30 fish in three short hours.  I was super excited because the reef we fished was absolutely loaded with eyes.  It literally was lighting up my graph like I can’t even explain.  Although we could have sat there all day, we used our best judgement and went in search of other active fish.

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The plan was to fish the tournament with my brother-in-law Brent who arrived in time to join us for dinner on Wednesday.  Prior to dinner we put together a 3rd smooth moves suspension for my Crestliner.  My boat fishes three comfortably, but this lake can really beat you up if you do not have the seat suspensions.  L-1We decided to head north on Thursday for our second day of fun.  We put on lots and lots of miles in search of a back up plan in the event that our spot to the West did not pan out.  He was smiling ear to ear to join us in riding in comfort.

We didn’t find the fish schooled as thick as we did out west, but we found quality fish.  We caught one over 28 and several 18-19 inch fish to go with it.  In fact, our basket on Thursday would have won the tournament on Friday and had us in 2nd or 3rd on Saturday.  We closed out pre-fishing content and confident.  If you are headed up there soon, do yourself a favor and visit Tom’s tackle.
Their JB strobes are essentially all we use for jigging up there.  Pretty tough to beat a strobe on a Tooth Tamer Rod.  The color schemes on their blades are also perfect for LOTW.

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Our luck changed on the first day of the tournament as mother nature greeted us with nasty thunderstorms.  We sat in wind, thunder, lightning, and rain essentially all day.  The pre-fishing was all but useless, as the fish were essentially off of that reef.  I adamantly believe the lightning quickly drove them off the reef.  We scratched together a basket that afforded us a 12th place finish.

The second day of the tournament offered better weather but we didn’t find the right size fish.  We brought our four allowed to the scale, but unfortunately they were not the right four for us to do any good.

A big thanks to dad and Brent for a great time.  Next stop – Winnie!

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Memorial Day and Mtt on Mille Lacs

Memorial 9 Memorial 10Mille Lacs has a hot bite right now.  After all the gloom and doom this winter it is an awesome surprise.  I hit the lake with the family on Memorial day weekend and we had enough action all weekend to keep everyone happy.  The corking bite in the evening was rapid fire and we were catching fish of all sizes.  Now would be a great time to get up there and cork the evening bite that remains super strong.  We caught most of our fish in 18 feet anchored over some rocks while drowning a leech.

memorial 5 memorial 4 Memorial 8 Memorial 7Memorial 6 Memorial 2

This last Sunday I fished a tournament with Tony Nelson on Mille Lacs.  Our plan was to pull blades & crawlers and Super death rigs on a mud flat that we knew was holding fish.  I literally had a fish on 30 seconds into our first trolling run, and we had consistent bites the rest of the day.  Super death prevailed as the better of the two techniques and we trolled those rigs at about 1.2 mph for the majority of the day.  Most of our fish came on the top edges of the flat in 24 to 25 feet of water.  At times the wind would lay down, and we found it more effective to slide off the edge in 35 to 36 FOW.   The water temperature was right around 60 degrees and so the bite on the mud should really only get stronger and stronger in the next few weeks.  We stayed on one flat for the entire event and had a blast boating 24 walleyes.

We ended up with 23.45 lbs which was good enough for 10th place.  That should tell you something about the amount of big fish being caught right now.

Next stop for team shrimpy is Lake of the Woods.  Looking forward to fishing the Walleye Capital of the World!MILLE LACS 10THKind of fun when 5 of our 6 sponsors play a significant role in success.

1. Smoothmoves Seats — Wind was 20mph plus. Thank god I have them!http://www.smoothmovesseats.com/
2. Crestliner — Week in and week out – year in and year out the boat performs. https://www.crestliner.com/
3. Tom’s Tackle — We used their blades for a good part of the day! Your tackle box is lacking without them. http://www.tomstackleinc.com/
4. Contour Elite — We planned our day long before we got there.http://contourelite.com/
5. Tooth Tamer Rods — Landed all 24 eyes. Enough Said.http://www.biggametackleco.com/

Next stop is Lake of the Woods, so we look forward to staying at the best resort on the Rainy River. Wheelers Point Resort – http://wheelerspoint.com/

Tight Lines

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Mtt Mille Lacs Tournament

 

photo (1)Dad and I fished the Mille Lacs Tournament last weekend!  We arrived at Fisher’s resort on the west side to pre-fish on Thursday.  Please do yourself a favor and check out Fisher’s if you are headed up to the big pond.  They are set up as good as anyone to meet your needs, and they are family owned and run.  They will go out of their way to take care of you.  http://fishersresort.com/

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If you look at the results you can see the “dead sea” is not so dead.  Teams were catching big fish and lots of them.  I also heard very very good reports from the action that is being provided for the launches and the evening cork fisherman.  http://www.mntournamenttrail.com/2016_Results/521.htm

Water temps. were climbing to the upper 50’s and will be up o the lower 60’s by Memorial Day Weekend.  These types of temps. have the bugs hatching on certain parts of the lake, which have the fish on the move.  We were still finding fish on the first breaks in 15-18 FOW dragging shiners on 1/8 oz jigs, but there were also a lot of big fish being taken on the mud as well.  We rigged the mud with leeches, crawling along at .3 to .5 mph.  We are on the front end of a great bite on the mud that will only get better and better over the course of the next few weeks.

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The tournament was pretty solid for us on Saturday, as we weighed 19.97 lbs.  We lost a fish due to bad picture, which left us with 17.97 lbs and 20th place.  The fish we were on during pre-fishing and day one did not cooperate on day two, and unfortunately we did not make good adjustments.  We won’t bother discussing day 2.  Something worth discussing is the format though.  We absolutely love the PRT format, and hats off to Mike and Renee for making the change.   Sorry about the lack of pictures from the actual tournament days, but we end up submitting the SD card and we never take the time to take additional pictures.  It is pretty important to get those fish back in the water as quickly as we are able.

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Thanks again for all that are supporting us this year.  Each and every one of you help us to put more fish in the boat.  In this tournament alone Contour Elite helped with the preparation, Tooth Tamer rods are as good as any when it comes to rigging, and with the higher winds on Sunday – Smooth Moves Seats literally helped us get around the lake without killing ourselves.  Please visit their websites to learn more by clicking on the icons you see along the right side of this page.

I am headed back to Mille Lacs this weekend for some leisure fishing with the family.  We are also planning to fish the MTT event on June 5th!

Tight Lines

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2016 Shrimp Shack

new cabin 1Like anything Team Shrimpy started small.  Approximately 12 years ago we started our fishing operations out of a fish house on Mile Lacs.  We were stationed out of Barnachles Resort, followed by Castaways.  We used the fish house year round as our cabin.  I have very fond memories of that time because that is where it all started.  We spent several years there learning the Lake and enjoying the fact that we had a place to get away to.

We eventually out grew the fish house and purchased a cabin South of Garrison.  New cabin 14 We were learning to fish tournaments out of the Shrimp Shack and everything that goes into what it takes to stay competitive.  Again the place served us well for that part of our life, but we also were quickly realizing that we needed a bigger space.  As our children got bigger, the cabin we had grown to love seemed to be getting smaller.

I am writing this today because we have just signed a purchase agreement for the property you are seeing in pictures.  Our “home waters” will remain Mille Lacs, but we have a new central station for fishing operations.  Team Shrimpy and my family are starting a new chapter on 4.39 acres.  We have access to a smaller lake but are within minutes of the big pond.  I feel extremely blessed and I honestly believe it was meant to be.  I know for some this would not mean much, but to me it is HUGE!  We got extremely lucky to sell ours, find this one, and negotiate a deal that kept the property affordable for us.  I hope our luck continues right into the 2016 MTT Season!  I have a feeling this could be an epic year for us!  (19 days and it all begins)  I am more fired up this year because I have been busy selling, buying, and moving.  I have a few more weeks to wrap it up, but I will soon have my mind right for the Mille Lacs Tourney!  Time to get back to fishing!

New cabin 13 New cabin 12 New cabin 11 New cabin 10 New cabin 9 New cabin 8 new Cabin 7 new cabin 6 new cabin 5 new cabin 4 new cabin 3 new cabin 2

 

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Do you ever just feel blessed!

Pool four scratched my itch a little bit but sometimes time just seems to stand still.  I am very anxious to kick off my 2016 fishing tournament season.  I will wet a line on opener but things won’t really get cranked up until the following week on Mille Lacs.

As I wait I could not feel more blessed for the Team that has stuck with me.

preseason album 1JerseysDad Tourney  2

Brent Muilenburg                       Tony Nelson                                      John Meisch

I am so lucky to be able to fish with family and friends.  These guys are what make me cherish my time on the water.  Thanks for being the best co-anglers a guy could ask for.

I can also not say enough about sponsors.  Some anglers take on any sponsor that will offer them anything related to the fishing industry.  Makes no sense.  Team Shrimpy has a much different approach.  We know, use,  and  have had success with the products long before we seek sponsorship with any organization.  We are so blessed to be supported by some of the best products on the market.  We use everyone of them year in and year out and will continue to use them as long as we are on the water.

walleyerodlinekeeperSmooth Move SeatsGetter done face book

Tooth Tamer Rods                      Smooth Moves Seats                 Crestliner Boats

Tom's tackle for facebookOctsamrayburnmidfallbass

Tom’s Tackle                               Wheelers Point Resort                  Contour Elite

It is simple!  These folks help me be the angler I am.  Don’t miss out on allowing some great people and products assist you in putting more fish in the boat.

HAVE A GREAT SEASON!

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Red Wing

Red wing 2

Crankbaits on lead or long lines.

2.5 mph trolling down river

17 to 24 FOW

 

Here are the results from the MTT down in Red wing this weekend:

Saturday = http://www.mntournamenttrail.com/2016_Results/416.htm

Sunday = http://www.mntournamenttrail.com/2016_Results/results.htms

We didn’t fish this tourney but we did make it down to pool 4 on Sunday to do a little leisure fishing.  My dad, Jerry Driessen, and my brother in law Brent found some quality fish willing to cooperate on cranks.

Red wing 3Red Wing 1

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Go Time

satelite Image

2016 – Start your engines!

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