Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Minnesota Fall Turn Over Muskies

(Photo by Chuck Beasley In-Fisherman)

Holy buckets did things change in hurry.  Last night I made a last minute dash to Wally World (Walmart) and I thought I was going to get blown away with the snow and wind.  It was awesome!  This kinda gets me pumped up for the ice fishing season ahead, but lets stay focused here, and remember this is the time the big ones decide to bit!  

Fall is a period when many changes happen with in the lake including the "Fall Turn Over" period.  Ok so I'm going to get a little sciency here and it might feel like you are in science class all over again but if you want to cash in on the fall bite this is important piece of the puzzle.

In most of our lakes in the Midwest there are three layers.  The first or top layer is called the Epilimnion, an upper layer of circulating warm water, usually no more than 20 to 30 feet deep, where dissolved oxygen concentration are moderate to high, then comes the Thermocline, a layer of rapid temperature and oxygen decreased with depth, often pretty thin, the thermocline separates the upper and lower layers, then we have the lower layer which is called the Hypolimnion, a cold, deep-water, non-circulating layer in which oxygen is low or absent.  

At some point during the fall the top layer, Epilimnion, starts to cool.  "Turn Over" starts when the surface water temp reaches approximately 50 degrees in which the surface starts to sink into the Thermocline.  As the air continues to cool the surface (epilimnion) temperature, a common temperature, between all the layers starts to occur.  With the wind the water continues to mix the full water mass.  Eventually the oxygen levels will be the same throughout the entire water column allowing fish to use deeper water.

So with most lakes turned over in our region most of the fish will utilize deeper structure for feeding areas.  Usually the number one location I look at are steep, wind blown, drop offs with deep water access.  Active muskies and walleyes will move from the deep water to feed on these steep edges.  When fishing for muskies in this situation it will require you to get down to these fish.  Two of my go to baits are the New Storm Giant Flat Stick and the New Storm Thunderbeast.  Both of the lures have specific triggering qualities for these types of situations.  
The Giant FlatStick (pictured above) is a bait imitating lure that can be used in a very aggressive manner with hard jerks and pauses, a straight retrieve, with slow soft jerks causing lure to work side to side and trolled.  The bait has flat sides that causes a super wide wobble, loud rattles, and is built tough so you can bang it on rocks, wood and through the weeds.

The Thunderbeast is a soft plastic with a large tail that gives huge vibration.  This is a lure you can cast out on these deep edges, let if fall, and with hard or soft jerks work it back to the boat.  The muskies just love to eat this lure up.  You can see more at Storm Lures.
So don't let a little snow or cold weather get you down!  Get out on the water, find a deep edge, and put one of these lures in the face of a giant muskie.

"Make a Memory"

Jeff "Breezer" Andersen


  1. Good information... and that Muskie is a PIG! Wow!

    The Average Joe Fisherman

  2. Hi Ryan! Thanks a bunch. Lots of good fish starting to move around. Hopefully we can put a real big one in the boat....

  3. Wow! I guess you weren't kidding when you left that comment on my blog. That fish is HUGE! I don't think I could hold it up for a picture...

    Sorry I'd love to leave a more intelligent comment here but I just can't get over the size of that fish...

  4. Hi Jeff,
    Came across your blog via Kari's, glad that I did. One of my ambitions is to catch a large pike over on this side of the pond but seeing the size of the Muskies over there only leaves me with two words - bloody hell. I may have to rethink my plans.