Go Super-Glo For More Early-Ice Walleyes 

Ice Pros Brad Hawthorne, Joel Nelson, and Brian “Bro” Brosdahl Share Their Experiences With Brand-New Northland Fishing Tackle® Super-Glo Spoons 

BEMIDJI, Minn. (November 30, 2023) – First- and early-ice can be an exciting time of year. But antsy anglers need to exercise a great amount of safety preparedness—like wearing a float suit, using a spud bar to check ice thickness with each step, carrying a throw rope, and fishing with friends.

Depending on your location—from the sloughs and potholes of the Dakotas to the lakes of Northern Minnesota (like Upper Red Lake) and farther to the east—we could be on hardwater in a few weeks. Yes, time to get your rods, reels, and tackle organized.

What do experts believe is going to be the hot bait of the season?

Actually, there are quite a few—many featuring Northland’s new proprietary Super-Glo paint finish—patterns ice pros like Joel Nelson, Brad Hawthorne, and Brian “Bro” Brosdahl put through the paces last winter, all with extremely positive results.

New for 2024, Super-Glo paint finishes span three of Northland’s most popular spoon families—the Buck-Shot® Rattle Spoon, Buck-Shot® Coffin Spoon, and Forage Minnow® Spoon. Adding to already extensive families of spoon colors, anglers can now choose from four Super-Glo colors, including: Super-Glo EXO WhiteSuper Glow EXO RedSuper Glow EXO Blue; and Super-Glo EXO Chartreuse.


“First, I’m a big fan of the fact that Northland brought these four Super-Glo colors to the time-tested Buck-Shot Rattle Spoon, which catches fish everywhere,” says ice pro, Joe Nelson. “That’s a bait I always have tied on at least one rod.”

Nelson continues: “Obviously, the new Super-Glo Red pattern will be a go-to for early-ice on Minnesota’s Upper Red Lake. But don’t overlook Super-Glo White or the other two new, Super-Glo colors, either.”

“For the dark, turbid waters I fish a lot, the original Buck-Shot is a no-brainer, made even better with the brighter glow,” offers Nelson.

“I’m convinced I caught more fish on these lakes and backwaters because the glow is that much brighter. In testing, the glow lasted at least 15 minutes. Remember when we used to use flash bulbs to get glow-painted lures to hold a charge, recharging them every couple minutes. Northland has solved that problem.”

Based on testing last winter, Nelson is also super-excited about the Super-Glo Forage Minnow spoon options.

“When fish don’t want a loud rattle or the exaggerated movement of a Buck-Shot Coffin Spoon, now you’ve got Super-Glo finishes in the Forage Minnow, too. In waters that have more clarity, sometimes you want something that’s a little more subdued than a Buck-Shot, but still with visual appeal.”

Nelson typically picks the spoon to match the water body he’s fishing.

“Given the clear water on Mille Lacs, last year I fished the Forage Minnow Spoon a lot—and during the lowlight hours of morning, evening, and after-dark, the new Super-Glo finishes definitely attracted walleyes.”


Mille Lacs Lake ice fishing guide, Brad Hawthorne, has seen slow improvements in glow-paint options over the past 15 years. There have been some advances, but anglers (like him) have always wanted something brighter and longer-lasting.

“Over past years, we’ve seen more anglers fishing walleyes higher up in the water column,” offers Hawthorne.

“So, we’ve been looking for something brighter and easier for walleyes to cue in on when they’re active. Looking for the brightest paint glow possible, Northland experimented with countless pigments and formulations before settling on the current Super-Glo.”

For Hawthorne—spending day-in, day-out on Minnesota’s Lake Mille Lacs—he found that regardless of the spoon style, both Super-Glo EXO Blue and EXO Chartreuse “bonked the crap” out of walleyes.

“You combine the long-lasting, bright charge with Northland’s premium hooks, and it’s the recipe for success.”

In terms of colors, Hawthorne mentioned his faves for Mille Lacs, but recommended Super-Glo EXO Red for Upper Red Lake and Lake of the Woods.

“Now, whether you’re fishing high in the water column or pounding bottom, you have that added glow with better visibility in stained waters and about twice the visibility of normal glow in clear waters.”

What both Hawthorne and fellow ice guide, Brian “Bro” Brosdahl have in common is they use the Buck-Shot Coffin Spoon in Super-Glo as their early-ice search bait.

“My #1 Northland spoon for finding active fish is the 3/16th Coffin Spoon in Super-Glo Chartreuse,” offers Hawthorne. “Functions almost like a rattle bait in that it draws in fish with both the internal brass rattle, kicker-tail fin, and now, added Super-Glo visibility.”


Like Hawthorne, Bro will use the Buck-Shot Coffin Spoon as his “first-drop” search bait. “You add the Coffin’s tumbling action with the new ultra-bright Super-Glo and it’s deadly,” says Bro. “Even with today’s technology for finding fish, it doesn’t hurt to drop down a flashy spoon, rip it a few times, and just see what’s there.”

Bro says he also caught “tons of fish” on both the original Buck-Shot and Forage Minnow spoon in Super-Glo patterns, too.

“Last winter the Super-Glo Buck-Shot was fantastic in darker water—but clear-water walleyes will gravitate to it, too. As for the Forage Minnow Spoon, that’s a winner on clear waters or anytime walleyes are finicky.”

“Super-Glo’s designer, Northland’s Sam Larson, was fishing just a short distance from me and had caught eight walleyes before I really got my groove. Finally, I asked him what he was using, and he was testing a new Super-Glo spoon, so early on I saw what difference it could make.”

Advice to anglers looking for good-bet first-ice walleye spots, Bro says he typically starts by fishing the edges of weed beds or steep, shore-connected breaks.

“With shore-connected structure, make sure the top isn’t too shallow. I typically look for the deepest spot on a long shoreline connected to a long, shoreline-connected bar that breaks into deep water. Add features like rocks, chara grass, and standing cabbage, and you’re good. Don’t go directly to the tip, look for the unique features along the way.”

And Bro says the after-dark bite in these areas can be dynamite with the new Super-Glo spoons.

“You charge them up and they create bites out of thin air. What I like to do is drill a bunch of holes on top of the structure during light—including the shallowest part and other features—and then, when the sun goes down, hop around with the Super-Glo Buckshot. Sometimes, I can catch as many walleyes after dark as I did during the sundown bite window,” concludes Bro.



ABOUT Northland® Fishing Tackle

In 1975, a young Northwoods fishing guide named John Peterson started pouring jigs and tying tackle for his clients in a small remote cabin in northern Minnesota. The lures were innovative, made with high quality components, and most importantly, were catching fish when no other baits were working! Word spread like wildfire, the phone started ringing… and the Northland Fishing Tackle® brand was in hot demand! For 40 years now, John and the Northland® team have been designing, testing and perfecting an exclusive line of products that catch fish like no other brand on the market today. Manufactured in the heart of Minnesota’s finest fishing waters, Northland® is one of the country’s leading producers of premium quality jigs, live bait rigs, spinnerbaits and spoons for crappies, bluegills, perch, walleyes, bass, trout, northern pike and muskies.

ABOUT Bagley Bait Company

The personality of any company comes from its founder. Jim Bagley was an inventive, fun-loving, passionate fisherman who became one the most respected legends in the fishing tackle industry. In late 2010, Jarmo Rapala and a group of investors bought Bagley Bait Company. As an admirer of Jim Bagley for his attention to quality and of his product ingenuity and innovation, Jarmo initiated significant changes in operations, enhanced production processes and quality control. Now in 2020, Northland® Fishing Tackle, along with Jarmo as its Chief Lure Designer, maintain the legacy of creating premium balsa crankbaits and topwater lures, as well as jigs and spoons for both freshwater and saltwater anglers.


Noel Vick

Traditions Media

(612) 708-7339

Jim Edlund

Traditions Media

(612) 481-7396