Fishing Sand Lake
Walleyes work the shallow drop-off areas where minnows run as soon as temperatures reach the mid-50 degree range, and they continue to use these shallow edges well into the summer. Weed edges, clam beds, and rocks are all good locations to fish walleye.
Walleyes are attracted to subdued and natural looking jig color or darker minnows like rainbows and dace. For technique, try fishing your jig with a light pumping or a slow swimming action. Another great pattern for early season walleye on Sand Lake is a slip bobber rigged with a small jig and a lively leech while fishing inner edges of weed flats and seeking out areas of cabbage weeds.
As the water warms in early summer, some walleyes stay in weed beds, but large numbers move to deeper edges of shoreline bars and points. Fish in deeper waters can be caught on any common walleye fishing presentations—for instance, live bait rigs with medium length snells, 4-6 feet, and tipped with leeches or crawlers will produce good catches of walleye.
Crappies are abundant in Sand and the surrounding lakes, and the quality is excellent. Early season crappies use the weed beds near deep water and remain in these areas for most of the summer. During late summer and fall, they use deep drop-off edges and areas where remnants of “crappie cribs”—place during the 1980s—continue to hold fish. There are several deeper rock bars located throughout the Sand Lake, and crappies frequently use the deep edges of these bars as well.
Sand Lake is loaded with northern pike, which are generally small in size and highly active during cool water periods. Northern pike are extremely aggressive and very tasty, making them a highly coveted catch. And, though it might be tempting to do otherwise, larger northern pikes should be returned to the lake to help control the huge population of smaller pike. We suggest you hunt weed bed edges, casting or trolling with crank baits, or jigging with live minnow bait for the most success in northern pike fishing.
Perch and pan fish
You’ll find perch and pan fish if you hunt the main lake bars and weed lines with a plain hook or small jig and night crawler. Vertical jigging and bobber fishing are your best choices for hooking theses fun-to-catch and tasty critters.
Largemouth and smallmouth bass are present in adequate numbers in Sand Lake, providing plenty of opportunities for anglers who like to explore the shallows and back bays
The early May Fishing Opener is a great experience on Sand Lake. The walleye congregate in the shallow water (4 to 8 feet), making them easy pickings. While the walleyes are holding to the shallows, you’ll find many crappie in the deeper holes, and bass will be holed up in the back bays feeding on just about everything—from crawfish to minnows.
Come summer, with the sun is high in the sky, you’ll want to hunt the deeper holes and shadowed bays. In early mornings and evenings, concentrate on deep holes, ledges, weed beds, and humps—any structure that provides a shaded place for fish to feed.
Our favorite time of the year is the fall fishing season. Nearly every species becomes more aggressive as they gorge themselves in preparation for the long winter ahead. Just remember one thing: Hang onto your line with both hands, because when they hit that lure, you're going to have a fight on your hands!