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Northern Wisconsin Fishing Report – July 13th, 2012

ASHLAND AREA

Last week’s weather was hot and rain-free, so lake and stream levels are on the way down. The bite was very slow. The Chequamegon Bay area of Lake Superior has cleared of heavy sediment suspension, and the near-shore fishing is starting up again. Temps in the high 80s and low 90s have kept boaters off the lakes during the heat of the day for the most part.
In Douglas County, the bass fishing has been fair, but a lot of the fish seem to be on the small side. Bluegill fishing has been good, but the bigger fish are in deeper water.
Angler’s All, (715) 682-5754.
River Rock, (715) 682-3232.

BOULDER JUNCTION AREA

Muskie action has been good on area lakes. Bass also are biting well and walleye action has been slow, with surface temps at 72 degrees or more. Walleyes have been caught on the deep weed edges of the bigger lakes in 20 to 24 feet of water.
Northern Highland Sports Shop, (715) 385-2134.

MARINETTE/OCONTO AREA

The heat and wind have kept fishermen off of the lakes. Noquebay and High Falls are still providing panfish in 10 to 20 feet of water, but the wind has made it difficult to stay on them. Deep humps in 20 to 40 feet are holding fish of all types. There was only one report of walleyes on High Falls. The fisherman was trolling crawler harnesses in front of the dam from the break line into 35 feet of water. There were reports of people seeing some nice muskies on Noquebay.
MBK Sport Shop, (715) 735-5393.
Hook, Line and Sinker, (715) 854-2073.

MINOCQUA/WOODRUFF/ LAKE TOMAHAWK AREA

Heat and high pressure have made midday fishing rather miserable, but the fish aren’t biting then anyway. The best has been very early – sometimes the bite is over by 7 a.m. – or toward dusk. Fish are being caught, but the window is sometimes small. The walleye action is good, but it’s very important to fish early (pre-dawn until 7 a.m.) or late on deep, large lakes. Jumbo leeches on lighted slip bobbers are accounting for the best catches. Flowages are giving up some fish on leeches and crawlers, but anglers have to work for them. The muskie action has been good. Evenings with topwaters has been the best.
Island Sport Shop, (715) 356-4797.
Great Outdoors, (715) 356-6818.
Captain Hooks, (715) 277-2405.
J & J Sports, (715) 277-2616.

EAGLE RIVER AREA

Water temps are in the mid-70s, but good fishing continues. Northern pike are on a tear. Use a jig and a fathead minnow, spinnerbait, No. 4 Mepps, or a crankbait. Everything’s working. The bigger northerns will be somewhat deeper. Both species of bass are providing very good to excellent action. For largemouths, go shallow in heavy weeds, lily pads, or under every dock in the area. Smallies are off of breaks over hard bottom in 12 to 15 feet of water on the clear lakes, and 9 to 12 feet on the darker water. Crappies, bluegills, and perch are biting in the very good to excellent range in 10 feet of water or less on weed edges. There has been good action on muskies in 8 feet of water or less on small bucktails or topwater lures.
Eagle Sports Center, (715) 479-8804.
Guides’ Choice, (715) 477-2248.

HAYWARD AREA

Walleye action on the Chippewa Flowage has slowed some with the higher daytime temperatures. Anglers are catching a few walleyes, with the early morning or late evening being the best time. Live bait seems to be out-producing artificials, with leeches and partial crawlers doing slightly better than minnows. Deeper wooded areas with weeds seem to be holding more fish than most other places. Magical depths seems to be 8 to 15 feet. Anglers fishing the depths also are picking up panfish. Muskies are providing action to those braving the afternoon heat. Topwater baits seem to be the choice of most muskie anglers, with bucktails and jerkbaits being a close second. There seems to be more fish looking than taking on most days. River fishing has been good for walleyes, bass, and muskies. Topwater baits were doing well for bass and muskies, while live bait was producing a few walleyes and catfish when they were concentrating in the holes. Land and release muskies as quickly as possible with minimal, if any, handling. Warm water and high temperatures can stress the fish quickly, resulting in dead fish, even though released alive.
Hayward Bait, (715) 634-2921.
Hayward Lakes Visitor and Convention Bureau, (800) 724-2992.

PRICE COUNTY AREA

The heat wave and high water conditions in the Park Falls area seem to have caused muskie-fishing action to pick up. Anglers were reporting catches of 40-inch-plus muskies coming off of the Turtle-Flambeau Flowage, Park Falls flowages, Butternut Lake, and the Pike Lake chain. Topwater baits were producing fish, as were jerkbaits and large tandem-blade bucktails. The South Fork of the Flambeau River is moderately low, and the North Fork is slightly low, but they’ve been great for paddling. Muskies have been biting, and smallmouth bass have been active on the rivers.
Bridge Bait & Tackle, Park Falls, (715) 762-4108.
Ross’s Sport Shop, Phillips, (715) 339-3625.

RICE LAKE AREA

Bass fishing has been erratic during the past couple of weeks, and many anglers have reported some slow days. Largemouths have yet to fully set up in their summer patterns and they still seem to be holding near dense weed beds and around deep-water cover. Smallmouth bass also have been tough to come by and have been picky. Some nice fish have been caught near mid-depth woody cover, and small finesse plastics have been the key in getting them to bite. Muskie action is good. Some decent catches were being made on many different types of baits, but topwaters, bucktails, and jerkbaits seem to be the favorites. For walleyes, the best action has been found in mid-depth weedbeds and the open pockets within these beds.
Rainbow Ace Home Center, (715) 234-8116.
J.C. Bear Paw Co., (715) 236-7300.

SIREN AREA

Fishermen are catching panfish, bass, and walleyes on Clam Lake. Smallies are hitting in the river, while catfish are biting at the dam and in the narrows between Upper Clam and Lower Clam. Panfish are hitting on Mud Hen and Little Butternut, and the bass action has been good on Warner Lake chatterbaits. Most anglers are fishing early and late in the day because of the heat, and they’re playing on the lakes during the day.
Big Mike’s Outdoor Sports, (715) 349-2400.
Fur, Fin and Feathers Sports, (715) 349-8445.

WAUSAU AREA

Fishing continues to be good with nice catches of walleyes and crappies coming in, along with some nice muskies. The walleyes have been holding in about 8 to 12 feet of water along sharp breaks. A few of the fish have been holding along the deeper wood edges, but most of the action has come from fish associated with rocks, and on jigs tipped with minnows and crawlers. The crappie bite has been good. Most of the fish are suspended in 12 to 16 feet of water, about 4 to 6 feet down. The catfish bite has been good and it just seems to get better every year. Lots of nice cats in the 3- to 5-pound range are being caught, along with fish up to 15 pounds. Just locate any deep pool or washout hole in the main Wisconsin River channel and set up above the hole. The muskie bite has really turned on. Most of the action is coming on bucktails and spinnerbaits, but anglers were seeing good action on topwater baits, too. Fish weeds in 6 to 10 feet of water, and wood-strewn breakline edges along the old river channel.
Wisconsin Angling Adventures, (715) 297-7573.

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