Welcome To LakeKabetogama.Org

News from Lake Kabetogama, Minnesota

Welcome to Lake Kabetogama.org, a place to share information on the Lake Kabetogama area.
Lake Kabetogama is one of four vast, interconnected lakes in Voyageurs National Park. Lake Kabetogama, Rainy Lake, Namakan Lake, and Sand Point Lake are part of the 14,900-square-mile Rainy Lake basin. Lake Kabetogama is about 25000 acres in size with about 200 islands and has a maximum depth of about 90 feet.


Lake Kabetogama has hundreds of island campsites (more...)

DNR Lake Kabetogama Info Including Test Netting Data

dnr lake kabetogama info

Status of the Fishery (as of 06/12/2010)

DNR Lake Kabetogama Info Including Test Netting Data

Spring came early in 2010 and while it was not a particularly warm summer it did provide an extended growing season and an early start for many of Lake Kabetogama’s fish species. Record early ice outs in the area and only one cold snap during the month of May allowed Kabetogama’s black crappie and smallmouth bass to spawn successfully. Low water levels in early spring deprived northern pike and
perhaps perch of the vegetation preferred for spawning which may have delayed or reduced the success of those species spawning efforts. Strong year-classes of walleye are not occurring as frequently as they once were. While at this time we are unsure of the cause, high juvenile mortality appears to be affecting walleye recruitment and therefore production of strong year-classes.
This high juvenile mortality has dropped considerably in the last two years, but the effects of that decrease may take several years to become apparent in the walleye community of Lake  Kabetogama. CLICK HERE FOR MORE

 

Winter Ice and Trail Conditions On Lake Kabetogama

Entering Voyageurs National Park on the Moose Grade snowmobile portage

Lake Kabetogama Winter Ice and Trail Conditions

Great Story

Updated: December 30, 2016

The entire Blue Route, east Namakan to Sand Point, is now open and staked.

The entire Green Track from Rainy Lake/Black Bay to Kabetogama to Ash River on to Crane is open and staked. Grooming with the small groomers on portages only has started but use caution as portages maybe rough at times.

Park staff is continuing to monitor ice conditions and have still not found sufficient load bearing ice to stake any more trails at this time.

In addition, use caution when traveling across the lake as some slush has developed along the trails and across the lake.

Snowmobile Trails

International Falls to Kettle Falls (Purple) – Not Open
Rainy Lake/Black Bay to Kabetogama to Ash River (Green) – Open, staked
Ash River to Crane Lake (Green) – Open, staked, portages groomed
Chain of Lakes (Dashed Black) – Not Open
Ash River to Kettle Falls (Yellow) – Not Open
East Namakan  to Sand Point Lake (Blue) – Open, staked
Rudder Bay (Orange) – Not Open

***Please remember the snowmobile speed limit within the park is 45 mph on frozen lake surfaces and 25 mph on all overland portages. Speed limit signs are posted at trail heads and overland portages.

Ice Roads

Rainy Lake Ice Road- Not Open
Kabetogama  Ice Road- Not Open

(more…)

Lake Kabetogama Walleye Through The Ice

Whether it’s summer or winter, walleye are generally found within a couple feet of the bottom. And not just any bottom, normally walleye hang close to some sort of lake structure like points, breaks, rock piles and humps. Kabetogama has an abundance of this type of structure. Walleye also like fast access to deep water so check out the steep breaks around points and bars.

During early ice walleye can be found in the same places they were just before ice up. Look for them in shallow water near points and shoreline bars. Combine these with other structure, like inside turns and rock piles, and it’s even better.

As winter progresses walleye move out toward mid-lake humps. Center Reef is a good example of this as is the areas around Cuculus Island.  Mouth of the Ash River can be outstanding all winter long.

As spring nears walleye begin moving shallower again into pre-spawn areas. Besides shoreline points and breaks, look for them near river mouths like the Ash River and up in Tom Cod Bay.

Before we switch gears and talk about presentation, remember locating the fish is half the battle. Don’t just drill one hole in 10 ft of water next to a point. Instead drill several holes in varying depths and find the fish.

Using modern electronics can also help you find fish faster. Depth, fish and structure can all be seen using a flasher (Vexilar or Marcum)

The most effective ice fishing presentation is jigging. Jigging is basically raising your rod tip about a foot, then dropping it back down to its starting position. Since Walleye are close to the bottom, insure you’re jigging within a couple feet of the bottom.

Don’t be afraid to touch bottom. Often this will stir up the bottom and attract fish. Don’t overdue it though. You’ll catch more fish by keeping your lure slightly above them rather than on the bottom of the lake .

Jigging attracts fish but unless they’re very active, a Walleye won’t take your bait/lure until it stops. So a very effective method is to raise and drop the tip, wait 3-10 seconds and repeat the raise/drop. Vary the amount of time you let you jig remain still.

Another jigging technique made popular by the pro ice fisherman Dave Genz is pounding the jig. Pounding a jig is basically jiggling your rod tip up and down just an inch or two very quickly.

Now that you’ve got the hang of jigging, lets look at the lure/bait you’re using. There are two main types of lures jigged while ice fishing for Walleyes. Flash spoons and swimming lures.

Swimming lures include the Jigging Rapala and Nils Master Jigging Shad.

Rapala Jigging Rapala Nils Master Jigging Shad

 

Swimming lures are great for more aggressive Walleye. Usually I put a minnow head on one of the treble hook barbs and start by fishing with one of these.

Northland Tackle and Lindy make lead head swimming jigs which can also be very effective.

Lindy Techi-Glo Flyer Northland Tackle Air-Plane Jig

Flash spoons, or vertical spoons, like the Swedish Pimple and Acme Kastmaster, are a couple of my favorites. They are easily identified by their vertical fishing position and a treble hook on the bottom. Spoons are great for moderately active fish. Put a minnow head on one of the hooks and you’ve got a dangerous combination.

Swedish Pimple Acme Kastmaster

In most places while ice fishing you’re allowed more than one rod. I usually set up either a tip up or a deadstick in either deeper or shallower water. Normally that set up just has a lead head jig and a sucker minnow on it while ice fishing for Walleye.

 

Voyageurs National Park Winter Ice and Trail Conditions Report 12/14/2016

 

 

International Falls, MN: Due to the lack of safe ice at this time, all snowmobile and ski trails are closed with the exception of the Echo Bay Ski Trail, which has been packed, but not tracked. Snowshoe trails are open but not packed.

Park staff has started checking ice conditions and found there is not significant ice to stake trails.  Please remember to think twice during this time of thin ice, when in doubt, stay off the ice.  For more information on general ice thickness safety guidelines, please visit the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources website at http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/safety/ice/thickness.html.

This winter season, the most up-to-date information regarding Voyageurs’ ice and trail conditions will be posted each Wednesday to the park’s Facebook page (VoyageursNPS) and on the park’s website at http://www.nps.gov/voya/planyourvisit/winter-ice-and-trail-conditions.htm.

Future winter ice and trail condition press releases will be issued only during major changes in trail conditions.

 

Snowmobile Trails

International Falls to Kettle Falls (Purple Trail) – Closed

Rainy Lake/Black Bay to Kabetogama Lake to Ash River (Green Trail) – Closed

Ash River to Crane Lake (Green Trail) – Closed

Chain of Lakes (Dashed Black Trail) – Closed

Ash River to Kettle Falls (Yellow Trail) – Closed

East Namakan Lake to Sand Point Lake (Blue Trail) – Closed

 

Rainy Lake Ice Road – Closed

Kabetogama Lake Ice Road – Closed

 

Ski Trails

Echo Bay Ski Trail – Packed, not tracked

Black Bay Ski Trail – Not open

Tilson Connector Trail – Not open

KabAsh Trail – Not open

 

 

Snowshoe Trails

Black Bay Beaver Pond Trail – Closed

Blind Ash Bay Trail – Open, not packed

Oberholtzer Trail – Open, not packed

Sullivan Bay Trail – Open, not packed

Rainy Lake Recreation Trail – Open, not packed

 

 

“STAKED TRAILS MAKE SAFETY SENSE”

ORANGE IDENTIFIES HAZARDS

 

Voyageur Country ATV

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Bruce Beste bruce@cabinsoncrane.com

We started a new ATV club – Voyageur Country ATV – in late April.  We had 66 people at an organizational meeting on April 25 where all 66 joined the new club.  We have had tremendous support and interest from the local ATV community.  To date we have over 500 adult members.  We are in the process to add approximately 60 children of family memberships to our member count.  Children between 12 and 16 who have ATV Safety Certificates will become family members (we also want to know children of members between 12 and 16 who are interested in a safety course because our club will sponsor classes).

Our membership includes folks from Orr, Leiding Township, Camp 5 Township, Crane Lake, Portage Township, Beatty Township, and Cook (plus other places).   Our mission is foremost to create an ATV trails system in Voyageur Country and promoting local business and commerce.  Then (secondly) to promote responsible riding on the system, and instruction for youth.

While there are many miles of ATV trails in the forests between Cook, Lake Vermillion, Crane Lake, Elephant Lake, Myrtle Lake,  Pelican Lake, and Orr, there is not a connecting system of roads open to ATV use.  Thereby, making it difficult to go from one trail to the other without trailering or loading machines onto trucks and trailers.  This method also creates a situation of several trucks and trailers parked along the forested roads. (more…)

Kabetogama Couple Killed in a Plane Crash

A Kabetogama couple killed in a plane crash Saturday in Washington were located Wednesday after they did not arrive at Orcas Island, Wash. Gail and Bob Nevalainen left in a small airplane last week from International Falls on their way to Orcas Island, Wash. They were reported missing by family members Tuesday night. Washington State Department of Transportation launched a search Wednesday morning in the remote wilderness of the northwestern mountains of Washington state. The wreckage of the plane was found about 40 miles east of Bellingham on Twin Sisters Mountain later that day.

 

Bob and Gail Nevalainen were joined in marriage on Feb. 17, 1979, in Chisholm, Minn., and passed away together on July 11, 2015, on the Twin Sisters Peak in the North Cascades Mountain in Washington State.

Bob, 62, was born Jan. 29, 1953, in Chisholm, to Richard and Gloria Nevalainen. He worked for St. Louis County for 39 years, retiring in 2010, and became the chairman of the Kabetogama Township where he helped accomplish many projects for the good of the community.

He was an outdoor enthusiast with a gift of gab, so whenever subjects of fishing, flying or hunting were brought up, the conversation usually ensued for hours. Bob was enthusiastic about including others in his passion for flying.

Gail, 58, was born March 11, 1957, in Sterling, Ill., to Harry and Blanche Stouffer. She was a stay-at-home mom until her three children entered school. Her love for children inspired her to become a paraprofessional for 17 years until she retired in 2014 to be “Nana” to her four grandchildren.

Gail loved her rock garden, the outdoors and expressed her artistic talent through extravagant, handmade greeting cards. She had a gift of making a complete stranger feel like family, and was an amazing and compassionate woman who would do anything for others. Her quick wit always brought a smile to your face.

As a couple, Bob and Gail were residents of Kabetogama since 1972 and both volunteered on the Kabetogama Fire Department and EMS, as well as being very active in the community.

They cherished their children, grandchildren, family, friends, and were equally admired and loved beyond words.

They will be deeply missed and their absence will leave a void in the many lives they touched.

Bob and Gail are preceded in death by their parents, Richard and Gloria Nevalainen and Harry and Blanche Stouffer.

Bob and Gail’s surviving family include their three children, Chad (Sarah) Nevalainen, Kari (Cole) Hraban, and Heather Nevalainen; grandchildren, Kali and Brielle Hraban and Hunter and Harper Nevalainen; Bob’s siblings, Terry (Tammy) Nevalainen, Cheri (Mike) Baron, Diane (Rick) Swearengin; Gail’s siblings, Marcia (Mark) Stouffer, Keith (Kathy) Stouffer, and Kenneth (Sophie) Stouffer; and many nieces and nephews.

Memorial services will be conducted at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, July 25, in the Falls High School gymnasium. Visitation will begin at 9:30 a.m. at the school. A celebration of life will begin at 3 p.m. at Ash-Ka-Nam banquet hall on the Ash River Trail.

In memoriam donations would be preferred to the Nevalainen Memorial Fund: Nevalainen Memorial Fund, Border State Bank, 1414 Hwy 71, International Falls, MN 56649.

Condolences may be left at www.greenlarsen.com.

Arrangements are with Green-Larsen Mortuary Inc., International Falls.

[WATCH]: Navionics Tutorial: Fish'N Chip & NavPlanner


Rating: 5
Ben Ellison, Electronics Editor of Power & Motoryacht and Sail magazines shows us the features & practical use of the Navionics Fish’N Chip & NavPlanner products.

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Kabetogama Snowmobiling

Lake Kabetogama is the “Gateway to scenic Voyageurs National Park”. Hundreds of miles of groomed marked trails through pine-filled northwoods forests and snow-covered lakes of Minnesota await you for a snowmobiling experience unequaled anywhere.Trails within the Park create a large loop that encompasses Rainy, Kabetogama, Namakan, Sand Point and Crane lakes. There are short portages between lakes, but it’s primarily lake top riding in the 110 mile network.A ride on the Chain of Lakes on the Kabetogama Peninsula is a MUST! This 13 mile trail winds naturally through the heart of Voyageurs and is barely wide enough for a snowmobile but will transport you back to the early days of the sport. The park isn’t the only area with exciting trails to ride, trails outside the park also provide their own scenic beauty and opportunities.The Arrowhead Trail is another must-experience trail, which stretches 75 miles from the town of Cook to south of International Falls. Riders can experience it all on this stretch. From International Falls, it starts with a six-mile jaunt of the flat, straight Blue Ox Trail. Halfway to Littlefork, the Arrowhead ventures eastward toward Kabetogama, and after fording a few streams, it dives south into the rolling, winding woodlands. The hills increase in size, and then slowly decrease into a flatter, lake-dotted terrain as one gets closer to Cook.  While exciting trails run throughout Voyageur country, the best part is the absolute quietness that one finds while stopped in the middle of one of the frozen lakes. It’s a place to take in the solitude and splendor of winter and the sheer beauty of an area where there are truly no roads. This is also a great place for those hardy enough to try winter camping, and campsites dot the shorelines and islands.

Some Tips Catching Smallmouth Bass with Flies

One of my favorite things in the world is bass fly fishing. There’s nothing quite like watching a bass attack a fly floating on the water at close range. Not to mention the thrill of watching a smallmouth bass do its tail dance across the surface as it tries to throw your hook, and the strength and fight in those smallies.

That’s why bass fly fishing, especially for smallmouths, is one of the greater, more fun challenges to freshwater anglers. But battling the pound-for-pound fighting champ isn’t easy. Before you get to battle the champion bass, you’ve got to get him on your hook.

Here are some tips on locating smallmouth bass:

•    Smallies have a different idea of ‘cover’. Unlike their bigmouth brothers, who never met a weed patch, dock or tree trunk they didn’t like,  smallmouth bass typically avoid such object. Instead, smallies look steep drop-offs where they can run to deep water ‘cover’.

•    Based on the above, try and locate smallmouths at rocky ledges and steep inclines that get deep quickly.

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Vince Barry
About the Author:

The author is an avid bass fisherman with over 30 years of experience, and a guest contributor at bass fishing fly, and many other bass fishing resources.