Southern Wisconsin Fishing Reports

Southern Wisconsin Fishing Report - July 11th, 2014


Surface water temperatures on area lakes were reported to be in the 70s. Bluegill fishing was best in 12 to 18 feet of water near sand and gravel areas adjacent to weeds, especially for larger fish. Smaller bluegills were found in shallower water around weeds and piers. A slip-bobber rig or vertical jigging is the best presentation in deeper water, while a small bobber works best in shallow water. Crappies were suspended along outside weedlines in 12 to 18 feet of water or over deeper water. Perch were active along weedlines in 9 to 15 feet of water, near the bottom. Vertical jigging with a small fathead, giant red worm, or spike worked well. Jigging spoons baited with live bait also can produce fish. Northern pike action has been great! Fish the deeper weedlines or deep structure near baitfish. Largemouth bass are in their summer patterns. During early morning or evening hours, fish the weed flats in 5 to 10 feet of water and use swim jigs, spinnerbaits, crankbaits, spinners, or topwater baits. Anglers also had success fishing the slop with plastic frogs. Smallmouths were active on breaks and over shallow rock bars. Walleyes were active along weed edges in 8 to 18 feet of water, and along deeper structure in 20 to 30 feet. Use leeches, crawlers, fatheads, or golden shiners. A Lindy rig, jig, or slip-bobber rig are the best ways to present these baits. At night or early morning, cast crankbaits over the tops of weeds. Muskies will be found on breaks or deeper weedlines. Casting bucktails, spinnerbaits, or plastic baits triggered fish. Trolling crankbaits along breaks also can be effective. Catfish were caught from the Rock River, along with lakes Koshkonong, Mendota, and Beaver Dam.

DNR hotline, (414) 382-7920.

Smokey’s Bait Shop, (262) 691-0360.

Dick Smith’s Bait, (262) 646 2218.


Weather has been causing havoc for anglers, but the action has been good, with Lake Mendota smallies providing great action on bars in 12 to 18 feet water. There also is some walleye action on those same bars for anglers using leeches. There has not been a lot of bluegill action on Mendota lately, but guys are finding a few fish here and there. Trolling for white bass on Werner Bay has been good. Lake Monona bluegills are hitting at Hudson Park, Wild Haven, Squaw Bay, and over just about all weed edges. If you fish a little deeper in those areas you will find some perch down to 21 to 26 feet. Muskie action is kind of slow, but largemouth bass are shallow and active. They’re also on weed points. Things on Lake Waubesa were quiet, except for small walleyes on the weedlines. Kegonsa is giving up some bluegills, perch, and crappies, but not many.

D&S Bait & Tackle, (608) 244–3474.

Dorn Hardware, (608) 244–5403.


Panfish on Lake Noqubey are done spawning and have entered their summer patterns. Weed edges in 6 to 10 feet of water have been producing some nice bluegills. Start on the windward side, where the forage has been pushed to, and also look for insect activity on the surface. A slip bobber and worm or small leech has been producing some nice results. Small plastics like Mini Mites and small ice jigs tipped with wax worms also have been working. Bass fishing has been good on small crawlers, medium leeches, plastic worms, and 3⁄8-ounce spinnerbaits. Bass fishing on the upper Menominee River is still producing some nice catches on wacky-rigged 5-inch plastic worms.

MBK Sport Shop, (715) 735–5393.

Hook, Line and Sinker,

(715) 854–2073.


Water temps are rising as warm winds pushed surface readings to the low 70s. High winds made boat positioning difficult, making it tough to execute the precision needed for walleye fishing or to anchor for panfish. Largemouth bass fishing is very good. Winds were keeping action sub-surface. Use jig/pig or creature baits along deep weed edges. Wacky worms also are an excellent choice. Lots of 14- to 17-inch fish have been caught, but fish up to 20 inches, and longer, also were reported. Walleye-fishing action has been good. The wind is helping, yet hurting. The wind keeps walleyes up in weeds later into the morning. Larger fish are still being caught (24 to 26 inches) with most fish in the 16- to 20-inch range. Muskie action has been good with bucktails and smaller rubber baits producing the best. Water temps are great for topwater action, but the winds not! Smallmouth action has been good, and the action is beginning to pick up even more. Running X-Raps over rocky breaks and peaks of 8 to 12 feet has worked well. Try drop-shotting Craw Papis or small Jackals over deeper humps. Fish are just starting to show up in 14 to 18 feet of water. Northern pike action is good. Casting spinnerbaits over weed flats produced a 40-inch (released) pike last week. Bluegill action has been fair. Water temps are prime for bedding (72 degrees), but the wind is roughing up the water. Crappie action has been fair. Wind is making targeting this species tough, too.

Island Sport Shop, (715) 356–4797.

J & J Sports, (715) 277–2616.


The Wisconsin River is high, but things should start to settle down pretty soon. Lake Wisconsin walleyes are on the mud flats where guys are trolling medium-running crankbaits for the best catches. Largemouth fishing is good on Lake Wisconsin, where the bass are still shallow. The white bass fishing is just kicking in; just look for sea gulls or for fish blowing up on the surface. Use anything shiny. Wisconsin River action has been just so-so, with smallies on the current breaks. Trout are hitting on Devils Lake, and bluegills are just starting to spawn there. Look for them in 8 to 10 feet of water. Fish Lake bluegills are just leaving the beds; they are just off the spawning areas. Guys are seeing lots of fawns, and also lots of twins.

Wilderness Fish and Game, (608) 643–5229.



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