Cooler weather bringing mixed bag of opportunities
The first big wave of kings and browns invaded the Algoma harbor last week, but clear water has been a problem on most days. There are fish there, but not a lot of them are being caught. Trollers are fishing 40-120 feet down in 100-300 feet for salmon and trout.
Algoma Area Chamber of Commerce hotline, (800) 626-3090.
Billy Goat Bait & Tackle, (920) 487-9710.
Chinooks have been in Pike's Creek and Pike's Bay for about three weeks. Anglers are trolling for them in the bay, and fishing the streams. Trollers are using spoons, bait flies or squids. Lake trout fishing continues to be good anywhere from the flats to Outer Island to Houghton Point. Smallies, northern pike and walleyes are hanging in the deeper weeds in Chequamegon Bay. The Ashland shop registered 20 bears the first day of season, including a 419-pounder.
Angler's All, (715) 682-5754.
Outdoor Allure, (715) 373-0551.
BOULDER JUNCTION AREA
Muskies are hitting on the Manitowish chain. Try Island Lake. Fish off the weedbeds with jerkbaits and over deeper rock bars with crankbaits. Walleyes are in the deeper weeds at 12-18 feet, particularly in and around coontail patches. Use a big leech, or try a crawler. Smallies can be had around the biggest rocks you can find in 8-12 feet. Big crappies are in 6-12 feet of water, hugging cribs or brush piles.
Boulder Junction Chamber of Commerce, (800) 466-8759.
Northern Highland Sports, (715) 385-2134.
We Tie It, (715) 385-0171.
Trollers on Lake Owen are catching a few average-sized walleyes. Smallies are still going good around structure in 12-20 feet of water. Use crawlers or minnows. Bluegills running about 8 inches are in 12-15 feet of water around brush or weeds. Use waxies or worms. Muskie action is slow.
Cable Area Chamber of Commerce, (800) 533-7454.
EAGLE RIVER AREA
Walleye fishing has been more inconsistent than anglers would like. The two patterns anglers are seeing remain a deeper water daytime pattern on some of the clear lakes and a weed pattern on the darker, shallower fertile lakes. Walleyes are starting to hit the best on minnows now. This pattern will strengthen as water temps drop. The good bass fishing continues to hold on, especially for smallies. There has been good smallie fishing along shorelines, shallow rocks and over deeper hard bottom areas. Largemouths remain in the weeds. The good muskie fishing days have been few and far between. For the best results, use live bait and larger crankbaits and jerkbaits.
Eagle Sports Center, (715) 479-8804.
GREEN BAY AREA
Fishing from the Oconto breakwall was producing some brown trout and an occasional salmon on Cleos, Krocodiles and spawn sacs. With the recent rains, the Oconto River has come up slightly and is pulling in some bigger fish out of Green Bay. There are reports of some trout now being caught in the river. There were also some perch, smallmouth bass and walleyes being taken. A few rainbow and browns were moving up the Oconto River. North Bayshore Park (Oconto Park II) has been an active spot for salmon. The early goose season is under way with some hunters reporting success the first day.
Bob's Bait & Tackle, (920) 499-4737.
Chippewa Flowage muskies from 45-50 inches are being caught on bucktails and topwaters on the bars and weed edges in 6-15 feet. Some anglers are starting to use suckers, with mixed success. Walleyes are still active on the flowage over submerged bogs in 15-20 feet of water, or on the weedlines on the west side of the flowage. Use a leech or a crawler. Crappies are schooled around cribs or floating bogs in 12-25 feet. Minnows or tube jigs are working best. You'll get smallies on the east side of the flowage around the rivers in depths from 12-15 feet on into the shore.
Pastika's Sporting Goods, (715) 634-4466.
LA CROSSE AREA
Bluegills are biting on Lake Onalaska, but the Mississippi River is low and walleye fishing on the river has been a bit tough. The early September hunt for local giant Canada geese went well almost everywhere in this area. A moderate number of hunters were out, but relatively few geese were bagged on the first day.
Schafer's Bait Livery, (608) 781-3100.
R&L Riversports, (608) 783-3349.
Bob's Bait & Tackle, (608) 782-5552.