Everyone catches fish at Milton-some just catch more than others. Here are a few tips to get you started.
Milton is a great crappie/sunfish lake. As a matter of fact, the crappies on the wall in the Lady Slipper Lodge all came out of Milton. I suggest ultra light tackle and 4 lb test line. There are also many northern pike and large mouth bass. All of the basic fishing strategies apply to Milton. For example, low light conditions are the best. That includes before and after sunrise and sunset and also on cloudy and windy days. Points are good for crappies and bays with cabbage weeds are good for sunnies. Northerns can be caught trolling the very visible weedlines.
In early May we sometimes catch sunnies in 10" of water in open pockets between shore and the lilypads. In late May look for sunnies in 1' to 2' of water.You can catch a lot right off the floating dock. In June look for them in 3'-6' of water near the lilypads. By July 4th, you will probably find them in 12'-18' feet of water, but only fish them down about 6' deep. Wax worms work very good on orange and yellow tiny jigs. Earth worms also will catch a lot of fish. They bite light too, so a good way to catch them is to use a micro-light pole and fish with no bobber.
Springtime is crappie time at Milton. The action can be non-stop off the end of the floating dock until mid June. Fish 5' - 6' deep and tip a plain hook or a small jig with a crappie minnow. Many people use a small bobber and make a very slow retrieve. Let the bobber go down for a few seconds and then set the hook slowly and gently. After all, crappies aren't called Papermouths for nothing.
Winter offers excellent fishing for crappies and northerns. Its best in early and late winter and most people fish for crappies in the "crappie hole" straight out from the Lodge on Lower Milton. You'll be able to easily see where all of the action has been. For northerns, set your tip-ups off the grassy points in 8'-16' of water. Also, don't drive a car through the channel since the ice there can never be trusted.
There are many good places to fish in the lake and when the bite is on, it doesn't seem to matter a great deal where you are. But finding spots is half of the fun, so I'll leave you to discover your own hot spots. Some locals fish the lake though, so I'd keep an eye out for where the locals go.
There are plenty of northern in the lake too. All of the regular presentations work for them, but if I had to choose one method, I would troll with an orange and black buzz bait tipped with a sucker minnow. Use small baits early and larger baits later in the season. Also, In August, I would be very surprised if you don't have a number of northerns take your sunfish as you are reeling them in. I had one two years ago that would have gone about 10 lbs had I landed it. It hit a small sunny that I was reeling in off the end of the floating dock. I saw the torpedo of a fish shoot out from under the dock and hit the sunfish just as I was about to lift it out of the water. I played it for 10 minutes before my 4 lb test line broke.
I have to admit, I'm a poor bass fisherman, but others seem to do quite well casting the shoreline with crank baits.
I hope this gives you a little something to go on. Nothing is guaranteed though when it comes to fishing and even I have to sometimes move my boat many times before I find the hot spot of the day. Good Luck!
Tony and Denise Elfelt
Lady Slipper Lodge
316 East Main St. #120
Anoka, MN 55303
I hope that you may live to fish until your dying day
And when your final cast is made and life has swept away,
I pray that God's great landing net will catch you in its sweep,
and in His mercy, God will judge you big enough to keep.