Temperatures in the 70s this week are chipping away on the ice on area lakes.  Glen Schmitt from Outdoor News joined me on WJON.  He says ice fishing in Central Minnesota is done and now we await the ice to melt on area lakes.  Schmitt estimates the ice will be gone within the next 10 days to 2 weeks.  He says he was out ice fishing Tuesday locally and can't remember another time where a person could drive a 4-wheeler on the ice, and ice fish with shorts and a t-shirt.

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Schmitt says the ice is already starting to erode from the shorelines.  He says in regards to the ice "it's going to go quick".  Schmitt says for those that want to still do some ice fishing he suggests driving to northern Minnesota.  For those looking for open water fishing he suggests going to southern Minnesota.  He says the ice could be out on southern Minnesota lakes.  Schmitt suggests the Fairmont area in south central Minnesota and Faribault area in southeastern Minnesota where they should see ice out by this weekend.

For those looking to open water fish Schmitt suggests fishing creeks and rivers looking for suckers and carp.  He says the next steps would be looking for panfish in shallow muddy bays. Schmitt indicates he's heard people fishing the channels on Lake Minnetonka despite the ice still on the lake there.

The stream trout "keep season" opens Saturday in Minnesota and Schmitt says this is a big deal in southeastern Minnesota.  Locations especially involved in this includes Lanesboro and Preston.  Schmitt says reports he's heard are the streams are running well and the streams are "real fishable."

Schmitt says this time of year is a great time to bird watch.  He says his son, Andrew has been taking pictures of ducks in the area.  He says the ducks are looking real good right now as they prepare to mate.

If you'd like to listen to my conversation with Glen Schmitt it is available below.



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