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Expert Tips for Catching Smallmouth Bass on Lake Minnetonka

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Join Bassmaster Open Pro Brad Leuthner as he takes you on a deep dive into fishing for smallmouth bass on his hometown lake, Minnetonka. Learn the best times to fish, where to find the best spots, and Brad's favorite techniques for catching these elusive fish. Whether you're an experienced angler or just starting out, this video has something for everyone.

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Lake Minnetonka, a renowned bass fishing destination, offers anglers a unique challenge and opportunity. Brad Leuthner, a Bassmaster Open Pro, shares his expert insights gained from years of experience on these waters. This summary highlights the key aspects of successful bass fishing in Lake Minnetonka, focusing on techniques, seasonal patterns, and preferred baits.

Smallmouth Bass in Lake Minnetonka

  • Size and Abundance: Smallmouth bass in Lake Minnetonka range from 2 to 6 pounds, with 3 to 4.5 pounders being abundant. Trophy class bass are typically around 5 to 6 pounds.
  • Best Seasons: The optimal times for targeting smallmouth bass are during the spring and fall. Summer fishing can be challenging due to the bass's elusive nature.
  • Ideal Locations: Begin on the clearer, east side of the lake, focusing on areas with deep boulders and rock transitions near coontail. Shallow waters near rocks and docks become productive later in the year.

Effective Techniques and Baits

  • Ned Rig: Pair a larger size flat minnow with a ned head for emulating small minnows or crayfish. Use a light leader (8 to 10 pounds) combined with 10 pound braid on a light action rod.
  • Drop Shot: Essential for smallmouth bass fishing, use a drop shot rig with a flatworm, adjusting the weight based on depth and wind. Equip with a high-quality fluorocarbon leader and a light action rod.
  • Diet of Smallmouth Bass: Their diet primarily consists of crayfish, shiners, and small perch. Choose baits that closely mimic these natural food sources.

Lake Minnetonka offers diverse and rewarding bass fishing experiences. By understanding the bass behavior, preferred habitats, and adapting your techniques to seasonal changes, anglers can significantly improve their chances of a successful catch. Remember to tailor your approach with the recommended baits and rigs for an effective fishing adventure in Lake Minnetonka.



Video Transcription

What's up everybody? This is Omnia fishing species. Deep dive. I'm Brad Leuthner Bassmaster Open Pro, we're out here on lake Minnetonka. This is where I grew up cut my teeth on bass fishing and learned everything I know about bass fishing. Smallmouth on Tonka aren't abundant, but there is a good size class to them. Uh, the typical smallmouth in here range from two to, you know, 6 pound. Like a trophy class is probably 5 to 6 pound but there is abundance of three and 4.5 pounders, generally the best time of year to fish them in spring and fall. Summer gets pretty hard. They get out chasing bait and they're pretty hard to track down. So if you're going to target smallmouth on Minnetonka, I'd suggest early spring or late fall chasing smallmouth on Tonka generally, you probably want to start off on the clear end of the lake.

So the east side of the lake and look for deep boulders. Deep rock transitions from coon tail seem to be the most productive areas later in the year. They can move up shallow as they do in the spring and when they're up shallow, they can be anywhere from rocks and actually docks are a good pattern late in the year for small mouth. The smallmouth on Tonka generally are eating crayfish or once in a while, they'll be chasing. We do have a good population of shiners. So most of the time if you're targeting smallmouth of Minnetonka you want, like a bottom bait something fish close to the bottom emulating a crayfish or a little minnow and you know, or a small perch. They also like eating small perch.

Some of my favorite techniques are chasing down the Tonka, smallmouth first is the ned head. And I'd like to pair it up with a bigger size flat minnow, like a four inch flat minnow. And this is on a, on a perfect ned from Outkast. It, it emulates small, you know, minnows or a crayfish crawling across the bottom. I like to pair it up with a light leader, like a 8 to 10 pound leader. I like to throw it on 10 pound braid Sufix with a Daiwa Ballistic reel and a light action rod. Another another go to for me it's the drop shot when you're fishing smallmouth, you always gotta be throwing a drop shot or have one tied up, you know, pretty basic. Just use a little hook with a flatworm, you know, depending on wind. Kind of depends on your weight size and how deep you're fishing. We're gonna be fishing pretty deep today. So I have a heavier weight on same thing, pair it up with a high quality floral carbon leader, 8 to 10 pound suffix braid.

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