Wednesday, February 1st, 2023
Wednesday, February 1st, 2023

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

As water temps take tumble, fishing activity on rise


Chinook salmon are still being taken in good numbers, but
they’re still rather small. Mixed bags of rainbow trout, lake
trout, and coho salmon also have been taken. Anglers have had the
best success in 60-150 feet of water from the surface to 80 feet
down. As the sun comes up, follow the fish into deeper waters.
Dodger/fly combos, spoons, and J-plugs have all equally taken fish.
Pier fishing has been slow in Kewaunee and Algoma. A few chinooks
and rainbows have been taken, but anglers had to put in a lot of
hours while using alewives and spoons.

Algoma Area Chamber of Commerce hotline, (800) 626-3090.

Billy Goat Bait, (920) 487-9710.

Algoma Hardware and Sporting Goods, (920) 487-3374


Trolling in the islands has been good for catches of lakers,
browns, and splake. Dodger combos on any 60- to 80-foot sand flat
have been the ticket. The fish have been close to bottom, but
you’ll pick up a few stray high-riders on Dipseys and five colors
of lead out on boards. The flats have been producing. If the fish
aren’t at buoy 14, try by the sand cut shoal (rock pile) or toward
Madeline. There have still been a few reports of bigger kings
coming from the south channel, Chebomnicon, and Corny areas, but
just one here and there. In the Bay proper, fishing has been slow.
The water is muddy between Washburn and Ashland because of the big
flood. Walleye action is slow, and bass fishing has been spotty.
Northerns have been picking up the slack.

Inland reports have been mixed. Walleye fishing has turned to an
early morning, dusk, and after-dark affair. Muskie fishing has been
good. Bass and northern have gone deep, but reports have been good
on deep weed edges, and even for suspended fish over open

Angler’s All, (715) 682-5754.

Outdoor Allure, (715) 373-0551.


Anglers are still catching perch and some pretty nice bluegills
at daybreak on Beaver Dam. Walleyes are hitting in the evening, and
guys are picking up a few legals. Fox Lake bluegills are starting
to pick up. The crappies are just starting to bite out there.

Phil & Sons Tackle, (920) 885-6766.


Muskie action is picking up; anglers are seeing a lot of fish,
but not all are hitting. Fish the weeds in 6-8 feet with bucktails,
topwaters, or spinnerbaits. Walleyes are a low light-bite. The
leech bite is just beginning to fade, but is still working with
jumbos. Fish in and around rocks or on weed edges. Bass action is
still hot. Fish 5- 12 feet around structure. Use a small topwater,
spoon, or plastic for the largemouth, in addition to a bare hook,
split shot, and crawler combo. Smallies are in 7-15 feet over hard
bottom. Use tubes, crawlers, or plastics. Northerns are lively in
stump fields off deeper water. Crappies and bluegills are in deeper
weeds and cribs. Perch are in and around coontail and cabbage in
12-15 feet.

Eagle Sports Center, (715) 479-8804.

Guides’ Choice, (715) 477-2248.


The perch bite is still going in Oconto Harbor, but rough water
has been making things difficult. Anglers were still getting near
10-fish limits in 25-38 feet using small fatheads, but gobies still
were dominating much of the catch. Early morning to around 10 a.m.
has been the most productive time slot. Walleyes were being caught
from County Park II down to the Pensaukee River by anglers trolling
crawler harnesses and larger crankbaits in 7-12 feet of water, with
an occasional northern pike showing up as well.

In Shawano County, rivers and streams are very low. Smallie
action on the Wolf River has been excellent. Trout anglers should
use caution when releasing fish on streams due to warm water temps.
Panfish action has been good to excellent on small lakes.

In Brown County, the Fox River is producing sheepshead and
catfish on most days. Crawlers on the bottom pretty much guarantee
catfish. The mouth of the river was yielding some white bass and
white perch. Walleyes were still a pretty rare catch. Trolling
right down the middle of the channel with crawler harnesses or
crankbaits produced some action, with the best areas being between
the Hwy. 172 bridge and Mason Street. Some pretty large cats (up to
36 inches) continued to be caught at Voyager once in a while.
Suamico River perch action has slowed down a little, but perch
action has been good out on the west shore of the bay near the

Bob’s Bait & Tackle, (920) 499-4737, or (920) 499-6666.


Largemouth and smallmouth bass have been the main species of
interest lately, and action could be termed very good. Largemouths
seem to have set up shop near firm overhead cover such as logs,
stumps or bog edges, and fewer fish have been found cruising
weedbeds. All the major bass waters have been producing some great
action. Smallmouths also have been close to wood. The best action
has been on the larger flowages, with small plastics and
spinnerbaits catching most of the fish. Muskie activity has bumped
up a notch and anglers have been reporting some consistent action
along weed edges on bucktails and topwater baits. Walleye angling
has been slow. A few walleyes have been caught on crankbaits fished
along weeds edges after dark.

Pastika’s Sporting Goods, (715) 634-4466.

Hayward Bait, (715) 634-2921.


In Sheboygan, fishing off the piers has been slow. Trollers have
been catching chinooks 50-70 feet down in 70-110 feet of water.

In Port Washington, pier fishing has been slow. Trollers have
been catching mostly chinooks, along with a few rainbows, from
50-65 feet down in 70-145 feet of water.

In Milwaukee, shore fishing for perch has been hit or miss off
McKinley pier. Trollers have been catching good numbers of
chinooks. The best bite has been early in the morning, and fish
have been caught north of the harbor 40-60 feet down in 70-105 feet
of water.

Shore fishing in Racine also has been slow, but trollers have
been catching chinooks in 100-120 feet of water.

In Kenosha, a few perch have been caught from shore at daybreak
off the end of the south pier and on the lake side of the Southport
Marina breakwall. Trollers have been catching chinooks, mostly
early in the morning.

In Walworth and inland Racine and Kenosha counties, hot weather
has slowed fishing on the smaller lakes, but the deeper lakes like
Delavan and Geneva have been producing suspended bluegills and
other panfish. Northern pike were hitting suckers and chubs on the
bottom of Geneva. Lake Beulah has been good for largemouth bass and

In Waukesha County, bluegill fishing has been excellent. The
best catches are coming from Pewaukee, Pine, and Okauchee over deep
water. Look for suspended fish 11-21 feet down. Largemouth bass
also were providing excellent action at low-light times.

DNR hotline, (414) 382-7920.

Smokey’s Bait Shop, (262) 691-0360.

Dick Smith’s Bait Shop, Delafield, (262) 646 2218.


Walleye fishing has been pretty slow on Lake Winnebago. There
has been a little more success with jigs and crawlers than by
trolling. Walleyes appear to be feeding heavily on gizzard shad.
Perch action has been decent, with the bigger perch mixed in with
sheepshead near the bottom. You’ll catch a few sheepshead when
looking for bigger perch. On the upper lakes, there is still some
pretty good bluegill action in shallower water and the

Fox River Bait, (920) 233-7409.


Lake Kegonsa was yielding some nice bluegills last week, with
anglers catching fish in about 30 feet of water on the bottom,
drifting on the east side of the lake. Many of the bluegills were 9
and 10 inches long and were being caught on red worms. A few
crappies were taken, as well. Lake Monona bluegills have been
biting on Monona Bay and off of the Monona Terrace. Fish after 6
p.m. An unconfirmed report of a 59-inch muskie caught on the north
end of Lake Waubesa also was received. Lake Mendota white bass were
still biting.

D&S Bait & Tackle, (608) 244-3474.

Dorn Hardware, (608) 244-5403.


Anglers are still catching chinooks with some rainbows and lake
trout in the mix. North and east winds continue to scatter the
fish, making cool water hard to find. Fish were being caught in
65-200 feet on spoons and Dodger/fly combos and with J-plugs. A few
chinooks were being caught on the south pier in Manitowoc, and some
rainbows and chinooks were reported earlier in the week on the Two
Rivers piers. Fishing has been slow in both harbors, but some perch
were reported in the Two Rivers harbor.

CUB Radio report, (920) 683-6816.


Despite windy conditions, anglers were able to hook up with some
fish out on Lake Michigan from the Menominee, Little, and Peshtigo
rivers where they caught browns, rainbows, chinooks, and cohos.
Fishing was good out near Green Island, Trout Bar, and down to the
Peshtigo lighthouse. Most of the fish caught were smaller chinooks
with some smaller cohos, as well a bonus brown or rainbow. Most
fish were coming from 60 feet down or deeper. Best times were from
sunup to 9 a.m. Walleyes also were being caught by anglers trolling
crawler harnesses with bright blades, from the Little River down to
the Peshtigo River.

MBK Sport Shop, (715) 735-5393.

Pete’s Sport Shop, (715) 582-3681.


Walleye and smallmouth bass action is on the rise. Muskie action
continues to be good. Anglers are having good success finding
suspended fish in deep, clear lakes where they follow schools of
ciscoes and other baitfish. Topwaters and smaller bucktails were
producing some nice fish closer to shore on smaller lakes.
Largemouth bass, pike, bluegills, and perch strikes continued to be
steady. Walleye anglers were having moderate success fishing
weedlines with leeches in 12-20 feet of water.

Island Sport Shop, (715) 356-4797.


Catfish are biting on the Wisconsin River and flowages below
Nekoosa. Many anglers have been catching catfish from shore after

Sunrise Bait & Tackle, (715) 886-5440.

Petenwell Sports, (608) 564 7707.


Water levels are low on rivers and streams creating some
difficulties for paddlers. Water surface temps again climbed into
the 80s on most lakes. Fishing has slowed and success has been
mixed. Panfish continue to be found in deeper water. Walleye
success has been limited with most of the activity after dusk. Some
bass were being caught, but low numbers were being reported.
Anglers were catching a few muskies, but most were smaller

Bridge Bait & Tackle, (715) 762-4108.


Water levels remain low on the Mississippi and Wisconsin rivers
in spite of recent rainfalls. Bluegill anglers were commenting on
the lack of brush piles, snags, etc. Old fishing spots are dry or
in 1-2 inches of water. Catfish anglers reported catching several
nice channel catfish on stink baits early and late. Smallmouth bass
fishing has improved with many short fish being released along the
rock rip-rap by the railroad grade. Several bass anglers reported
catching catfish on crankbaits and jigs.

Stark’s Sport Shop, (608) 326-2478.


Muskie action is decent, but you’ll work for them. Fish the
weedlines from 6 feet and move deeper. Walleyes are biting early
and late. Fish structure or weed edges in 12 feet of water or
deeper. Use a jig and a leech, although leeches will soon start to
be less effective. There’s a good largemouth bite in deeper water
(8-10 feet) around structure. If you fish early morning, there’s a
topwater bite on poppers or plastic frogs or rats. Smallies are
over rocks and wood in 12-15 feet. There is good action for
bluegills and crappies near weed edges.

Rainbow Ace Home Center, (715) 234-8116.

J.C. Bear Paw Co., (715) 236-7300.


Largemouths are hitting very well around structure in 8-10 feet
on plastic worms and live crawlers, jigged or hooked up to a Texas
rig. There is some very good action for perch and bluegills, and a
few crappies, along the weeds in 10-12 feet. Perch will be somewhat
deeper than the ‘gills and crappies. Some average-sized pike are
biting in and around the weeds and sunken timber. Muskie are
active, and more and more follows are turning into hits. Use a
bucktail or topwater, and fish around weeds and off of structure in
6-8 feet of water. Walleye fishing is OK.

St. Germain Chamber of Commerce, (715) 477-2205.


The best bite right now is on Devils Lake for trout. Bluegill
and bass fishing also is pretty good on Devils. Bluegills are
hitting early and late in the day on Crystal Lake by anglers
drifting across the middle with ice jigs tipped with wax worms.
Fishing is picking up on the Lower Wisconsin, especially for
smallies on surface lures. Some really nice catfish are being
caught near the Prairie du Sac dam.

Wilderness Fish and Game, (608) 643-2433.


Bass have been providing the best action lately. Panfish action
has been in deeper water, at least 10-12 feet and mostly on waxies.
Catfish action is really rolling. A 26-pounder was caught last week
on the Clam River, where water levels are staying up nicely. The
water on the St. Croix near Grantsburg is way down, so watch out
for rocks.

Big Mike’s Outdoor Sports, (715) 349-2400.


Out on the big lake, both sides of the county were producing
good catches of chinooks and a few rainbows, along with the
occasional lake trout, brown, and coho. Baileys Harbor, Rowleys
Bay, and points north also were producing excellent catches. The
early and late hours continue to be the best times to fish.
Smallmouth action has slowed down, but a few fish were still coming
in all over the county. Out on the reefs, plastics, crankbaits, and
spinnerbaits, were producing the larger fish. Perch fishing
continued to be good on minnows, worms, crabs, and leeches in 20-40
feet of water near weedbeds, mud flats, and reefs. Northern pike
action continued steady in weedy areas of Sturgeon Bay. Walleye
action was fair at night for anglers bouncing a crawler and harness
off the bottom around Potawatomi Park, Sherwood Point, and Larson’s
reef. Be ready for a few more white perch here than at Bayshore,
but the gobies are not as severe. Little Sturgeon Bay has seen some
pretty heavy fishing. There has been some perch action off Squaw

Stevenson Pier Mini Mart, (920) 824-5222.


Smallmouth bass fishing remains good with crankbaits and tubes
producing action all day long. Muskie fishing is improving on
smaller bucktails, rubber baits, and weighted jerkbaits. Catfish
remain active from evening on through the night on fresh cut bait.
Panfish remain out deep and suspended fish can be caught on slip
bobbers or while vertical jigging a small jig.

Hooksetters, (715) 693-5843.

Wisconsin Angling Adventures, (715) 297-7573.

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