Northern Wisconsin Fishing Report – October 17th, 2013


Trees continue to show fall colors with some leaves already dropped. Fishing on the big lake continues to be good in deeper water, while shallower water becomes more littered with dead weeds, making it harder to troll without fouled baits. Duck hunting is picking up interest. Grouse reports are not good, with few birds being seen. Brule River fishermen are reporting that some steelhead are starting to be caught. The area open for fishing on the Bois Brule River is from Hwy. 2 to Lake Superior.
Angler’s All, (715) 682-5754.
River Rock, (715) 682-3232.


Shoreline anglers have been having some success catching muskies in excess of 40 inches on the Chippewa River downriver of the Dells hydro dam in Eau Claire. An angler went just upriver of Hobbs Landing to release a 48-inch muskie. Action will improve as cooler weather returns to the area. Hunters in the area haven’t seen many ducks yet because there hasn’t been any good, cold weather to get things moving. Hunters are still shooting a few teal and wood ducks. The woods are starting to open up a little bit, and grouse hunters are starting to find some birds. There is a good crop of acorns this year, and deer are concentrating on the oak ridges. Lake Wissota game fish action has been good. Bass action on leeches and small minnows has been good; walleye action has been good with live baits. Panfish have been fairly active.
Buroker’s Taxidermy and Bait, Eau Claire, (715) 835-0847.
Big Mama’s Bait Shop, (715) 231-0839, Menomonie.
Bill’s Sport Shop, Chippewa Falls, (715) 723-9033.


In Marinette County, salmon and trout have been seen at the dam in Peshtigo; fishing pressure has been light. Salmon and sturgeon are the story at Hattie Street, with salmon jumping. but not being caught. and most of the sturgeon being snagged and released. There is a fairly good walleye bite on the Menominee River before dawn and after sunset, with jigs and crawlers or plastics taking fish in the 17- to 22-inch range.
In Oconto County, some salmon have been observed up by the Stiles dam – pinks and kings. Anglers at the dam have been catching smallies, panfish, and the occasional rainbow trout. Anglers are using a variety of baits. One skilled angler caught a gorgeous 7-pound rainbow on a spinner. Anglers on Green Bay have been catching some nice walleyes in 15-plus feet of water while using jerkbaits. Perch are still biting on the bay in the 8- to 13-foot range on minnows. Some perch are starting to show up in the boat landings.
MBK Sport Shop, (715) 735-5393.
Hook, Line and Sinker, (715) 854-2073.


Pike action has been good. Use spinnerbaits over cabbage in 4 to 8 feet of water. Muskie fishing has been fair – surprisingly slow for what is usually prime muskie time. The fish are very shallow – 8 feet and less. Use shallow crankbaits, jerkbaits, and even topwaters. Largemouth bass action is good. Use spinnerbaits with double Colorado blades. Crappie action is good in wood in 8 to 14 feet. Walleye action is fair. Fish deep water (35 to 45 feet) with chubs or suckers on jigs or Lindy rigs. Flowage walleyes are in 10 to 14 feet of water near wood.
Island Sport Shop, (715) 356-4797.
Great Outdoors, (715) 356-6818.
J & J Sports, (715) 277-2616.


Walleye fishing has been good, with the fish moving more now to that fall pattern of more consistent daily action in deeper water. On the Eagle River Chain, the fish have moved to the holes in deep water on each lake. Jig and minnow action is by far the best in 15 to 18 feet around the edges of these holes. On the bigger, clearer lakes, the fish are on the breaklines and are hitting much better during the daytime than they have been all year. Northern action is still good, although the fish have moved a little deeper in the weeds. Bass action is slowing a little as the water temps decline. They too have moved deeper, but some muskie fishermen are reporting large smallies on muskie lures in the weeds. Muskie action has picked up significantly. Suckers have suddenly been great producers on the Eagle River Chain, with fish up to 49 inches being reported. Action as of last weekend seemed to be better on the smaller (under 500 acres) lakes.
Eagle Sports Center, (715) 479-8804.
Guides’ Choice, (715) 477-2248.


Muskie action is greatly improved. Look for fish shallow and deep, suspending on/along weedlines, cribs, rock bars, breaks, mid-lake humps, and over deeper water. Most baits are working, including Bull Dawgs, bucktails, topwaters, tubes, crankbaits, jerkbaits, and suckers on quick-strike rigs. Walleye action is improving, with fish holding in deeper water on weedlines, rock bars, brush, breaks, points, structure, humps, and holes in depths from 15 to more than 35 feet. The most productive baits are suckers, fatheads, crawlers, trolled crankbaits, and jig/minnow combinations. Pike action is fair to good. Fish are in weeds, weedlines, structure near baitfish in depths from 5 to 22 feet. For trophy pike, work bigger baits in the deeper water. Smallmouth anglers report only fair action, with fish on shallow rock bars and weed flats, mid-depth woody cover, breaks, points, and deeper brush and weeds. Crappie action is fair to good, with fish suspending over deeper water and near mid-depth weeds, cribs, and brush, as well as shallow weedlines.
Hayward Bait, (715) 634-2921.
Hayward Lakes Visitor and Convention Bureau, (800) 724-2992.


Muskie fishing has been bordering on excellent, with several anglers reporting multiple catches on a single trip. Artificial baits such as bucktails and large crankbaits have been doing OK, but the sucker bite has really turned on in the past week. Many of the muskies are being found suspended near mid-depth cover such as cribs and rock bars. Most of the muskies have been in the 32- to 40-inch range, with a few up to 45 inches. Walleyes also have begun to get more active, and anglers are having increased success with this species. Walleyes are starting to show up in shallow water and along weedlines.
Bridge Bait, (715) 762-4108.
Ross’s, Phillips, (715) 339-3625.

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