The Inaugural Tullibee Tourney

Join us at The Red Door Resort on Saturday, March 5 for the inaugural Lake Mille Lacs Tullibee Ice Fishing Tournament. For a registration fee of just $25, you will fish from sunrise to 4pm. Payouts for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places – and for largest single Tullibee. Dinner included!


Tullibee: The Most Underrated Fish in the Lake

Mille Lacs is best known for world-class Walleye fishing during both the open water and ice fishing seasons. But the big pond in northern Minnesota also has a well-kept secret: some of Minnesota’s very best Tullibee fishing. This begs an important question: what are Tullibee?

The Tullibee, also known as Northern Cisco, is a silvery fish with grayish fins. It is one of the most prevalent whitefish species in Minnesota. They commonly live in the deep, cold lakes of the north, as well as in the Great Lakes. Tullibee are best fished in the winter, particularly in and around mudflats. In terms of taste, it’s often said that a smoked tullibee simply can’t be beat.

Fishing Tullibee for Money

Mille Lacs has plenty of Tullibee, so it’s high time we have a Tullibee tournament on our lake. And The Red Door Resort – the only major resort on the north shore of Mille Lacs and one of the lake’s most popular resorts for family and fishing – is excited to announce the inaugural Lake Mille Lacs Tullibee Ice Fishing Tourney!

The rules of the March 5th tournament are simple:

  • $25 registration fee, which includes dinner
    Note: fee is waived if you stay at The Red Door Resort’s cabins or motel for the weekend (two-night minimum)
  • Fish starting at sunrise 
  • Weigh in by 4pm
  • Harvest up to 5 Tullibee
  • Total bag weight of up to 5 Tullibee will be measured
  • Payouts for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place, and for the largest tullibee

Over time, this will become a can’t-miss late-winter ice fishing tournament. This is your chance to participate in the FIRST ANNUAL installment. Ten years from now, you’ll be bragging about being here from the beginning!  


Early March is the Perfect Time for Tullibee Fishing

If you’re an avid angler (or just any average Minnesotan), you already know that Walleye season ends in late February (2/27 in 2022). You ALSO know that there’s still plenty of ice fishing season left in March and that folks aren’t ready to just pack it in until the open water opener in May. After all, the world doesn’t stop just because we can’t fish for Walleye!

You may also know that fish houses and portables must be off Mille Lacs by midnight on March 7th. People grumble every year that the date is too early, but the DNR wants to keep us all safe. Here’s the thing: a Tullibee tourney on March 5 means you can still be in a house! Like we said: early March – after Walleye season but before houses must be off the ice – is literally the sweet spot for this tourney! 

What If My First Hole in the Ice is a Dud?

Ha! Nothing to worry about. If your first hole in the ice isn’t producing, you can (and should) move around – this is the perfect time of year to be mobile on the ice. Even if you start in a house, you don’t need to stay! You can fish off The Red Door Resort’s meticulously maintained ice roads OR… bring a snowmobile, ATV, or side-by-side and travel further afield without the limitations of a car or truck. 

And remember: this is early March, not mid-January, so the temps are usually pretty mild. If you have to spend an hour or two away from the shack, you’re not likely to freeze yourself to the bone like you would earlier in the season.*

*This is Minnesota, after all, so we can make NO guarantees. As the old adage says, wear layers! You can peel off as needed but you can’t put on what you didn’t bring.

Stay the Weekend

As mentioned, your registration fee includes dinner on Saturday night (something besides smoked Tullibee – you’ll be going home with plenty of Tullibee ready for the smoker). But that’s not all. We have an even better offer for you:

If you stay onshore at The Red Door Resort for the weekend (two-night minimum), your tournament registration fee – and of course the Saturday night dinner – are included in your stay. And don’t worry, we aren’t jacking our rates for that weekend – that’s not who we are.

Look, you know you need a late-winter weekend getaway anyway, so why not book it at The Red Door Resort and kill two birds with one stone: enjoy one last ice fishing experience for the  season and get your competitive juices flowing. 

Besides, you’re for sure going to want to tell your kids one day that you won the inaugural Lake Mille Lacs Tullibee Ice Fishing Tourney!




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