The Apple River is kicking out numbers of pike and bass. Large suckers have started producing good muskie action on the weedlines of Lake Wapogasset, Deer Lake, Bone Lake, and the Apple River. Walleye action has slowed, but crappies and sunfish can be had on the 8- to 12-foot weed edges on Pike Lake and Big Round Lake.
Lucky Baits (715) 268-6231
There are a few cohos and browns in the bay, a few in Fish Creek and a few in the Sioux. We are waiting for water temps to change, which could be any day now. The large numbers of cohos and browns are yet to come into the bay. As the weather moves into a cooler fall pattern, the fishing will be great. The next couple of weeks should bring in some nice sized fish. Anglers report fishing around Long Island has been really good. Trolling for trout has been great using spoons and spin-n-glows. Overall, the big lake is in good shape and fishing has been good. Walleye fishing has been good. On clear, sunny days, anglers are fishing the edges of the channel and into the channel to catch walleyes. Use crawlers or crankbaits in the early morning or evening and fish the shoreline and the edges of the weeds out in the bay. Inland lakes have had good reports on panfish, bass and northern pike.
Angler’s All, (715) 682-5754.
River Rock, (715) 682-3232.
Walleye and muskie reports have been slow, but there’s been a noticeable drop in the number of anglers. You will find crappies over 20 feet on Lake Vermillion, in 10 feet on Big Round Lake, and 6 feet at Staples Lake. Sunfish reports remain strong in 12 to 15 feet of water on most lakes. There were a couple of big bucks shot in the area.
Indianhead Sport Shop
DOOR PENINSULA AND ALGOMA/KEWAUNEE AREA
Wind, wind and more wind! It has been a very windy two weeks, making fishing a bit challenging. Perch fishing continues to impress the local enthusiasts. Though there are not the massive amounts of jumbo perch around like “back in the day,” the numbers of perch seem to be on the rise. The better areas have been right in downtown Sturgeon Bay along the shipping channel, in Sawyer Harbor, on the flats along with the Little Sturgeon area, and over the deeper mud south of Little Sturgeon down past Chaudoir’s Dock area. Pike fishing has been fantastic when trolling or casting crankbaits, spoons, spinnerbaits or drifting with suckers. Salmon fishing from Sturgeon Bay to Washington Island has been going pretty good for those nice salmon on flasher-and-fly combos in 100 to 180 feet of water. There are also plenty of opportunities for some 4-year-old fall run kings and some brown trout in the shallower waters in the Sturgeon Bay ship canal and the northern Door County harbors. The daytime walleye trolling bite has been a bit slow along the Door Peninsula, but the rip jig bite has been OK around the vast structure. The night trolling bite has also been going pretty good when anglers have used crankbaits. During the day, fishermen have been locating fish on their electronics, marking those spots and coming back and jigging those fish.
Howie’s Tackle, (920) 746-9916.
Algoma Chamber of Commerce, (920) 487-3090.
EAGLE RIVER AREA
It appears as if we aren’t going to be faced with any severe cold front in the next week or so, but when it does come expect the lakes to go green as part of turnover. That process is very late this year, along with everything else. Lots of rain has made the lakes higher than normal. Walleye fishing has improved, with the annual migration of walleyes on the Eagle River Chain of Lakes into the deep holes. They can be found in or around those holes on all the lakes on the chain at this time. We have numerous reports of good concentrations of these fish in those holes – they are just not biting on some days. This would indicate that there is still a lot of night feeding going on. Some days, however, they have been pretty active around the edges of the holes in the 12- to 18-foot range. On the bigger lakes we are also seeing fish deeper now, with fish being caught in the 15- to 30-foot range on minnows. As a bonus on some of these lakes, the walleyes and ciscoes are mixed together at the deeper edges of the drop-offs. There are still largemouths to be had in the weeds; smallies are still deeper, but will forage for minnows in any area at this point of the year. Muskie action has been all over the place, with bad days and good days equally divided. These pre-turnover fish will be everywhere in the lake, from the shallowest weeds to deep water. Watch the moon phases, looking for moon underfoot or moon setting periods for best results. All bait types are working. Sucker action is just starting now.
Eagle Sports Center, (715) 479-8804.
GREEN BAY/APPLETON AREA
In Brown County, fishing pressure out of Suamico was moderate, with most anglers targeting muskies with mixed results – one boat landed three fish longer than 45 inches one day while others struggled to land any. Anglers were trolling crankbaits around Long Tail Point and Little Tail Point. A few shore anglers tried their luck with smallies and yellow perch. Fox River anglers were targeting walleyes and muskies, with the walleye anglers having better luck. They trolled crankbaits in the Fox River and up to Long Tail Point. Other species caught were channel catfish and freshwater drum. Shore anglers were mostly targeting “anything that will bite” with mixed success. At Bay Shore Park, anglers targeting walleyes saw some success trolling crankbaits in 25 to 30 feet of water, with most of the walleyes being of legal size.
Smokey’s on the Bay Bait, Tackle and Guide Service, (920) 436-0600.
Muskies are hitting topwater baits or suckers on the Chippewa Flowage, Spider Lake, Teal Lake, Lost Land Lake, Round Lake, and Namekagon Lake. The muskies are somewhat scattered, but concentrate your efforts on flats, weeds, drop-offs, and bars from very shallow out to about 12 feet. Hit the 20-foot weeds with minnows for walleyes on the Chippewa Flowage, Lac Courte Oreilles, Grindstone Lake, and Namekegon. Pike are on the feed around green weeds, drop-offs, holes, and wherever you find concentrations of baitfish and panfish. Smallmouth fishing is good to very good, with fish moving to deeper rocks, weeds/weed edges, cribs, and other structure on most any lure type. Crappies are hitting in 10 to 15 feet on Nelson Lake, Windigo Lake, and Chippewa Flowage. Grouse hunters are having success.
Hayward Bait, (715) 634-2921.
Hayward Lakes Visitor and Convention Bureau, (800) 724-2992.
LA CROSSE AREA
Water levels are dropping on the Mississippi. Anglers are finding walleyes and saugers on the 5- to 8-foot current seams. A jig and minnow or three-way rig with plastics are working best. Hit the back channel and snags for panfish, while catfish and sturgeon are biting below the dam in 25 to 30 feet.
Schafer’s Boats, (608) 781-3100.
Bob’s Bait and Tackle, (608) 782-5552.
LAKE MICHIGAN/METRO AREA LAKES
In Sheboygan, there have been good days on the south pier. Many cohos were being caught on alewives; Chinooks with spawn sacs. Action on the Sheboygan River has been mostly pretty slow when it comes to catching. Many anglers reported bites, but only a few kings have been landed.
In Port Washington, the power plant discharge area in Coal Dock Park has been a consistently good spot to fish. Brown trout and Chinooks were caught on spawn sacs and alewives recently.
In Milwaukee, fishing pressure on the shoreline has been steady as trout and salmon continue to stage in the Milwaukee harbor for the fall spawning run. Some of the Chinook salmon are starting to move into the McKinley Marina. A large number of brown trout, a few kings, and a few rainbows have moved up the Milwaukee River over the past two weeks.
In Racine, only a few boats were went out last week. A few anglers reported catching fish in 20 to 30 feet of water or in the harbor and in the Root River. Boaters caught kings, cohos and browns. Most boaters had success with spawn sacs or skein. A few boaters also trolled crankbaits and spoons. Shore anglers fishing in the harbor have caught kings, browns and a few cohos. Most of the fish have been caught on skein or spawn sacs; however, some cohos and browns have been caught on tube jigs. Some kings have been caught on crankbaits and spoons, as well. Anglers fishing from the piers caught some cohos and kings in the early morning, late evening, or at night. Anglers have had the best luck using skein, spawn sacs, tube jigs, crankbaits, and spoons. There have been few “catching” reports from the Root River, but many anglers reported seeing salmon running upstream last week.
In Kenosha, a few boat anglers fishing near the mouth of the Pike River reported catching some kings and cohos on skein, spawn sacs, crankbaits, and spoons. Only a few pier anglers were out, and only a few brown trout were reported. Shoreline anglers have been catching kings from the beach near the Pike River, and kings, cohos, brown trout, and rainbows in the harbor. Most of the fish have been caught on spawn sacs and skein, however some have be taken on tube jigs, crankbaits, jerkbaits, and spoons. Pike River action has been very slow.
DNR hotline, (414) 382-7920.
Smokey’s Bait Shop, (262) 691-0360.
Dick Smith’s Bait, (262) 646 2218.
Water temperatures fell to about 65 degrees on the Madison chain last week. Anglers found some perch action in shallow water next to weeds and tight to the shoreline on Lake Mendota. Smallmouths were also tight to shore on Mendota where they were hitting plastics in the areas of Maple Bluff, Second Point and Fox Bluff. Muskies were hitting topwaters, plastics and jerkbaits on lakes Monona and Waubesa. Anglers were also catching Monona bluegills from shore in Monona Bay and along “the wall.”
D&S Bait and Tackle, (608) 244-3474.
Dorn Hardware, (608) 244-5403.
The Chinook run is now in full swing. Salmon can be seen at all area dams, including Clarks Mills, Shoto, and Mishicot. Some fish are being caught in the downstream stretches and the harbors, so more fish are still moving up. In the harbors, spoons, crankbaits, and spawn are producing a few fish. Further upstream and at the dams spawn has been the best bait. The action is often inconsistent, even though fish can be seen surfacing. Fly fishermen are having the most consistent action using egg patterns. A few brown trout have also been caught by lucky anglers.
WCUB Radio, (920) 683-6800.
Fishing action is heating up and salmon are running in the Menominee River. Fish up to 20 pounds have been caught on spawn, spoons and flies. Bass fishing also has been very good in the lower river. Perch are hitting in Lake Michigan’s Green Bay in 3 to 15 feet of water. Smallmouth bass, pike, and a few muskies are being caught around the mouth of the Peshtigo River, with anglers concentrating on structure and current breaks; spinners and cranks are working well. Bear hunting has been fair. Hunting pressure has been light for grouse and woodcock. Deer numbers are up.
In Oconto County, fishing pressure has been light thanks to the weather. Anglers below the dam at Stiles on the Oconto River are still catching bluegills and crappies. Live bait has been working the best. A few salmon and trout have been seen below the dam at Stiles. Walleyes are being caught from the Pensaukee River mouth to Oconto Park II with anglers concentrating on rock piles and shoal areas. Shiver Minnows, Zip Lures, Jigging Raps and jigs tipped with live bait have been working. Some fish are being caught while trolling with a crawler harness in 18 to 25 feet of water. Perch are also being caught in 3 to 12 feet of water adjacent to weed beds on minnows and crawler pieces. Smallmouths are being caught by the river mouths. Pike and muskie fishing is also going well. At Geano’s Beach, walleye anglers continue to have trouble finding fish and getting them to bite. Most anglers are still targeting walleyes by trolling crawler harnesses or crankbaits. Muskie anglers have been having a little more luck than the walleye anglers. Muskie anglers have been trolling crankbaits; speeds a little slower than usual seems to be the best presentation for the more lethargic fish (due to the inconsistent weather).
Hook, Line and Sinker
MINOCQUA/WOODRUFF/ LAKE TOMAHAWK AREA
Walleyes: Good to very good over deep gravel humps or along gravel/mud transition zones in 18 to 34 feet. Jigging Raps have been hot and produce the best “hard” hits. Jig and minnow and crawler combos, as well as Lindy-rigging chubs, are also working well. On the big flowages (Willow, Rainbow and Turtle-Flambeau) fish wood using slip floats or weedless jigs.
Muskies: Good to very good. High skies have shut down mid-day fishing, but action during the mornings, evenings and any cloudy times have been very good. Topwaters have proved to be the best choice and that pattern should continue until lakes turn over (around 53 to 55 degrees). The sucker bite is ramping up. Pike: Good to very good on No. 4 or No. 5 Mepps Aglias and Comet Minnows worked over weeds of 6 to 12 feet. Try spinnerbaits or chatter baits for a more weedless approach.
Crappies: Good. Not as good as usual, but, still good in timber in 15 to 18 feet using medium fatheads. Perch and bluegills: Fair to good on flowages around deep wood.
Smallmouth bass: Good. Try fishing over off-shore gravel humps topping at 22 to 28 feet.
Island Sport Shop, (715) 356-4797.
J and J Sports, (715) 277-2616.
Fishing in the area has been tough the past week due to rainfall amounts of up to 8 inches. High water flow and large amounts of floating debris are making fishing conditions unbearable. White bass are still hitting throughout the system with fathead minnows and flies working the best. Some legal walleyes are being caught on a jig and crawler in 6 feet of water in the Castle Rock Flowage. As water temperatures drop the muskie action is picking up. Topwaters and jerkbaits seem to be working the best for muskies below the Castle Rock dam early in the morning.
Area duck hunters are reporting mixed results with some bagging limits of wood ducks while others are reporting seeing a few. It seems like there are very few mallards in the area. Large amounts of rainfall has water standing all over the area and the ducks are not concentrated. The corn harvest has begun the geese are starting to show up in large numbers. Area bowhunters are experiencing good success, with a 21-point buck shot in the town of Springville.
Petenwell Sports, (608) 564 7707.
Castle Rock Dam Bait Shop, (608) 339-2967.
The 3- to 5-foot weeds on Spooner Lake are giving up crappies and sunfish. The deep weeds on Big McKenzie Lake are worth noting for walleyes and panfish. Waterfowl hunters are shooting more geese than ducks.
AAA Sports Shop, (715) 635-3011.
SUPERIOR / DULUTH AREA
Island Lake is giving up crappies in 15 feet and walleyes in 10 to 12 feet on minnows. The Highbanks area on Fish Lake is producing crappies over 15 to 17 feet. A few salmon are being caught near the river mouths over 25 feet on Lake Superior. Grouse hunting remains tough with cover persisting, but hunters are flushing birds.
Chalstrom’s Bait, (218) 726-0094.
AAA Sports Shop, (715) 635-3011.