Northern Wisconsin Fishing Report – September 20th, 2013
Goose hunters seem to be few and far between, and even more rare is a dove hunter. Bear chasers are reporting slow going, with just a few bears being killed. Fishing is about normal for this time of year, with bass being the most active specie. Blackberries are ripe, and the moist weather has mushroom gatherers happy, too. Some boaters have already started to pull boats from the big lake.
Angler’s All, (715) 682-5754.
River Rock, (715) 682-3232.
CHIPPEWA FALLS / EAU CLAIRE / MENOMONIE AREA
New construction and improvements at Lake Altoona County Park have closed the boat access temporarily. Lower temperatures have greeted hunters scouting for deer. Early goose hunters have been finding some geese on cut corn fields south of Eau Claire.
Buroker’s Taxidermy and Bait, Eau Claire, (715) 835-0847.
Bill’s Sport Shop, Chippewa Falls, (715) 723-9033.
In Marinette County, crankbaits, plastics, and crawlers are producing nice smallmouths on the Peshtigo River from the dam to mouth. The Menominee River smallmouth bite is in full swing, with anglers reporting large numbers of big fish from the Hattie Street dam to the river mouth. The river’s walleye bite – early and late – has been producing fish in the 17- to 22-inch range on Twister tails and crankbaits. No salmon are being reported at this time.
In Oconto County, Geano Beach was busy last week with anglers looking for perch. Perch numbers were OK. Minnows were the main bait in about 10 feet of water. Smallmouth bass and panfish were still being caught on the Oconto River near Susie’s Rapids. Bay anglers from the Pensaukee Landing to Oconto Park II were still catching nice limits of perch (depending on the weather) in 8 to 14 feet of water. Walleyes also are being caught by trolling crawler harnesses and Raps in 10 to 20 feet of water.
MBK Sport Shop, (715) 735-5393.
Hook, Line and Sinker, (715) 854-2073.
EAGLE RIVER AREA
The cold nights have reduced the surface water temps enough to generate some turning of water. This green color will now stay on the lakes until it gets cold enough to allow these lakes to clear up. This is not an algae bloom; it is the true start of turnover. If we get warm fronts, the lakes will stay green until it gets cold. Walleye fishing has been good, with a lot of numbers, but not a lot of size reported. The fish are holding in the 9-foot range on the chain, give or take a couple of feet. They’ll go deeper as water temps decline. On the deep lakes, the fish have been more oriented toward night feeding. Bass fishing remains good, with largemouths still in the weeds but moving deeper. Smallies also move deeper in the fall, so look for deeper rocks for these fish. Muskie action is still spread out and even from day to night. Daytime action is best over weeds near deeper water. Larger bucktails and surface baits have been effective for fish in the weeds during the day. Night fishing remains good and will improve as we get closer to the full moon. The same baits work at night.
Eagle Sports Center, (715) 479-8804.
Guides’ Choice, (715) 477-2248.
Muskie action is fair to good, with the best fishing early and late in the day. The fish are in and around weeds and weed edges in 10 to 15 feet of water. The most productive baits have been big bucktails, gliders, topwaters, plastics, and jerkbaits. Walleyes remain scattered from 10 to 30 feet. Check weed edges, gravel, rock, brush, bogs, humps, and other structure. If you do not find them in one place, try another. Top live baits include crawlers, leeches, fatheads, and suckers. For artificials, try crankbaits. Northern pike action is improving with the cooling water. Look for them in thick weeds and on weed edges near panfish. Suckers are effective, but you can catch pike on spinners, spinnerbaits, spoons, and crankbaits. Largemouth action is fair to very good on shallow weeds, weed edges, slop, and brush on a variety of baits. Smallmouth fishing is good to very good on deeper gravel, rocks, points, and breaklines. Crappie action is fair to good, with best success early and late in the day on deep weed edges, bogs, brush, and cribs.
Hayward Bait, (715) 634-2921.
Hayward Lakes Visitor and Convention Bureau, (800) 724-2992.
PRICE COUNTY AREA
Sturgeon season is open and continues through Sept. 30. Opening weekend pressure was moderate. Quite a few anglers caught smaller fish. The best spots were the deeper holes on the North Fork of the Flambeau River. Bass anglers continue to enjoy good action on both species. Largemouths have been in thick weeds, woody cover, and bog edges. Smallies have been active in the rivers and channel areas of the flowages. Walleye activity continues to slowly improve. Quite a few walleyes were still being caught on leeches and crawlers near weeds. Muskie action has been fairly consistent, with a few larger fish showing up on deep weed edges.
Bridge Bait, (715) 762-4108.
Ross’s, (715) 339-3625.
ST. GERMAIN AREA
Grouse hunters will need to do a lot of walking to find birds this year. Bucks were still being seen in velvet last week and it is possible that an early season archery hunter may shoot a buck in velvet. A special tag is required to possess a buck that is still in velvet.
St. Germain Chamber of Commerce, (715) 477-2205.
Deer should be moving well this week if a predicted cold front arrives. White oaks should provide good hunting; there is a heavy acorn crop this year. There seems to be decent turkey production. Brood size seems to be five to six poults on average, with many poults being quite small, indicating late broods. There are many wood ducks on area streams, which should make for good shooting on the opener. Cooler weather should improve fall trout fishing, which can be excellent. It is hoped some precipitation will arrive and raise stream levels, which are very low. There are some ruffed grouse around, but it will take a lot of walking to find some flushes.
Backwater Sports, (715) 536-9056.
Gander Mountain, (715) 355-5500.