Northern Wisconsin Fishing Report – August 7th, 2015

MARINETTE/OCONTO AREA

Fishing on Lake Noquebay has improved lately. Bass have been hitting spinnerbaits and artificial worms, tubes, and frogs. Fish the 8- to 12-foot weed breaks and the lily pads for some nice action. Fishing for panfish has been deep – in 12 to 15 feet of water and tight to the bottom or halfway down. Plan on doing some sorting to get your limit of nice ones. Bass fishing up and down the Menominee River has been producing nice quantities of 2-pound and bigger fish. “Wacky-worming” is the best method for these Menominee River bass.

Hook, Line and Sinker, (715) 854-2073

MINOCQUA/WOODRUFF/ LAKE TOMAHAWK AREA

There has been lots of hot weather in the northwoods, raising water temps on the lakes and putting fish in some very typical bite patterns.

Largemouth bass: Very good. It’s hard to deny this species the top spot due to the action they are supplying. Mornings are finding good action on shallow-running crankbaits; switch to spinnerbaits and chatterbaits later in the mornings, and on cloudy afternoons. Otherwise use wacky worms, Carolina rigging, or creature baits. Evenings following the heat are providing great topwater action on winged hard baits.

Muskies: Very good. Stick to evenings on topwater baits such as PaceMakers and Whopper Ploppers. Bucktails along deep weed edges during early mornings and rubber baits (Alien eels) over open water late morning early evening also are catching fish.

Northern pike: Good bladed baits such as No. 3 and No. 4 Mepps Aglias, spinnerbaits, and chatterbaits, as well as 3.5-inch swimbaits, have been effective over weed tops. Topwater buzzbaits and small Whopper Ploppers are fun to fish along weed edges now – or just kick back and soak a sucker while you soak up some sun.

Smallmouth bass: Good. During the early mornings cast Shadow Raps, Scatter Raps, and X-Raps. During the midday hit deep rocks by drop-shotting plastics. Also, big leeches on jigs are tough for smallies to pass up. Big smallies have been reported up to 21 inches.

Walleyes: Good. They are setting up on classic structure – deep rocks or wood on natural lakes. They have been surprisingly shallow along weed edges on flowages. While leeches and crawlers are getting most of the attention, local guides are doing well on red-tailed chubs and black chubs.

Island Sport Shop, (715) 356-4797

J and J Sports, (715) 277-2616

PRICE COUNTY AREA

With the northwoods in the midst of the dog days of summer, angling success has hit the midsummer low point. Largemouth bass have been providing the most consistent action. The best success has been coming from the shaded areas and thick cover. Topwater baits and soft plastics have been the most productive lures, and the key has been to work them slowly through the cover. Smallmouth bass have remained a bit tough to find with just a few nice fish being caught on a slow presentation of plastic finesse baits worked near cover in the 6- to 12-foot depths. Muskie action has also slowed in the last week, with many anglers becoming frustrated with the variable success. The high temperatures seem to have pushed the fish to deeper water, and no consistent patterns have been found. Crankbaits, smaller bucktails, and Bulldawg-type baits have been the favorite lures. Walleye success has also continued its erratic trend. Some days have produced some fair catches in and around mid-depth weedbeds. Weedless jigs fished with leeches or crawler-halves have been the most productive baits.

Bridge Bait and Tackle, Park Falls, (715) 762-4108

Ross’s Sport Shop, Phillips, (715) 339-3625

ASHLAND AREA

Summer smallmouth fishing continues to be excellent! The fish have settled into their summer patterns and are using deep weeds, current areas, rock piles, and structure around Ashland. On the days when we have had winds from the south, a lot of the fish that are being caught are found in about 30 feet of water. Quite often brown trout move to the inside of the bay on such days, too. People are catching them along with walleyes while trolling the edges of the channel. Browns and lakers are being caught by trollers using mainly spoons, Spin-N-Glows, and mayflies.

It also sounds like the lake trout fishing has been pretty darn good out in the Apostle Islands. And there are still reports of “hex” hatching on the upper stretches of the Brule.

Angler’s All, (715) 682-5754

River Rock, (715) 682-3232

CUMBERLAND AREA

Crappies are being taken in the 10- to 12-foot cabbage on Beaver Dam Lake and Lake Vermilion. Muskies are being taken with bucktails on the weed tops of Rice Lake and by trolling crankbaits for suspended fish over deep water at Sand Lake. Largemouth bass are hitting topwaters on area lakes, while Silver Lake and Pipe Lake are kicking out smallmouth bass

Indianhead Sport Shop, (715) 822-2164

EAGLE RIVER AREA

Some hot weather has sat in the area for a while now, which means low-light fishing conditions are much better than midday. Water levels have held up pretty well, which means that most boat landings are in good shape. Weed growth is right to the top in most places.

Walleye fishing has slowed a little, and is much more inconsistent during the daytime than it has been. This is pretty typical for this time of year; most of the feeding is going on at night. There also has been a significant movement toward leeches and crawlers as the preferred bait. The walleyes, when they’re feeding, are still using the weeds, and sometimes surprisingly shallow weeds on the Eagle River chain. On the deeper lakes, look for those deep 12- to 13-foot weeds.

Bass fishing has been very good, with largemouths providing great action on all lakes. Look for heavy weeds and cover. Spinnerbaits have been working well for these fish, but plastics and surface baits also work on a daily basis. For the smallies, look for harder-bottomed areas with crayfish on them. Any imitation of crayfish will work. Some of the best are tube jigs in browns or oranges or brown or red crayfish colors. The fish will be in 8 to 15 feet.

Northerns are in the weeds. You can catch these fish on any kind of spinner or spinnerbait, or crankbait. They also will hit larger minnows. Just find weeds and start fishing for them. 

Muskie action has been better at night. This is the time of year that the bigger fish always seem to be caught in low-light conditions, and the experienced angler will stay out until 1 a.m. trying for these big gals. Daytime fishing can be good, as the fish do stage feeding runs up into the weeds. These feeding windows can be pretty short at this time of year, so if you have some action, fish hard and stay where you had the action. 

Eagle Sports Center, (715) 479-8804

HAYWARD AREA

Muskie fishing is good to great, and nearly all anglers report many sightings and follows. Concentrate on weed edges and deep weedlines, over/along/through cabbage, mid-lake humps, and gravel bars in 2 to 10 feet. The most productive baits include bucktails, Bull Dawgs, crankbaits, gliders, plastics, tubes, and topwaters. 

Walleye action is inconsistent (surprise, surprise!), but anglers are catching fish at all hours, though late evening into dark seems the best bet. Target mid-depth weeds and weed edges, wood, stump bars, gravel bars, and breaklines in 6 to 25 feet. Top baits include leeches and crawler pieces on jigs, Lindy Rigs, and slip bobbers, fatheads and suckers on jigs, and trolled crankbaits. 

Northern pike fishing is slow to fair, as is often the case in midsummer. Try fishing weeds and weed edges and wherever you find panfish out to about 15 feet with spinners, spinnerbaits, spoons, bucktails, crankbaits, and suckers. 

Largemouth action is good to very good, with the best action in the afternoon. Fish reeds, weeds, wood, cribs, brush, bulrushes, bogs, logs, stumps, and slop out to about 12 feet. Top baits include soft plastics, pre-rigged worms, jigs, spinnerbaits, buzzbaits, twitch baits, poppers, and frogs. 

Smallmouth fishing is fair to good on mid-depth wood, weedlines, rock bars, and humps in 7 to 22 feet. 

Crappie action is good to very good. Fish are scattered or suspending in 12 to 30 feet around weeds and weed edges, cribs, mid-depth brush, and bogs (especially in the evening). Bluegill fishing is good for fish suspending on the edges of shallow and mid-depth weedlines, wood, brush, and cribs. 

Hayward Bait, (715) 634-2921

Hayward Lakes Visitor and Convention Bureau, (800) 724-2992

IRON COUNTY AREA

Walleyes are hitting crawlers and leeches on the Turtle-Flambeau Flowage and surrounding lakes. Minnows are coming back into vogue early and late in the day, with crawlers and leeches working better during the midday. The walleyes have been in 14 to 18 feet of water. Crappie action also has been pretty decent. Muskies are hitting on surface baits and bucktails.

Turtle River Trading Co., Mercer, (715) 476-0123

MARINETTE/OCONTO AREA

Fishing on Lake Noquebay has improved lately. Bass have been hitting spinnerbaits and artificial worms, tubes, and frogs. Fish the 8- to 12-foot weed breaks and the lily pads for some nice action. Fishing for panfish has been deep – in 12 to 15 feet of water and tight to the bottom or halfway down. Plan on doing some sorting to get your limit of nice ones. Bass fishing up and down the Menominee River has been producing nice quantities of 2-pound and bigger fish. “Wacky-worming” is the best method for these Menominee River bass.

Hook, Line and Sinker, (715) 854-2073

MINOCQUA/WOODRUFF/ LAKE TOMAHAWK AREA

There has been lots of hot weather in the northwoods, raising water temps on the lakes and putting fish in some very typical bite patterns.

Largemouth bass: Very good. It’s hard to deny this species the top spot due to the action they are supplying. Mornings are finding good action on shallow-running crankbaits; switch to spinnerbaits and chatterbaits later in the mornings, and on cloudy afternoons. Otherwise use wacky worms, Carolina rigging, or creature baits. Evenings following the heat are providing great topwater action on winged hard baits.

Muskies: Very good. Stick to evenings on topwater baits such as PaceMakers and Whopper Ploppers. Bucktails along deep weed edges during early mornings and rubber baits (Alien eels) over open water late morning early evening also are catching fish.

Northern pike: Good bladed baits such as No. 3 and No. 4 Mepps Aglias, spinnerbaits, and chatterbaits, as well as 3.5-inch swimbaits, have been effective over weed tops. Topwater buzzbaits and small Whopper Ploppers are fun to fish along weed edges now – or just kick back and soak a sucker while you soak up some sun.

Smallmouth bass: Good. During the early mornings cast Shadow Raps, Scatter Raps, and X-Raps. During the midday hit deep rocks by drop-shotting plastics. Also, big leeches on jigs are tough for smallies to pass up. Big smallies have been reported up to 21 inches.

Walleyes: Good. They are setting up on classic structure – deep rocks or wood on natural lakes. They have been surprisingly shallow along weed edges on flowages. While leeches and crawlers are getting most of the attention, local guides are doing well on red-tailed chubs and black chubs.

Island Sport Shop, (715) 356-4797

J and J Sports, (715) 277-2616

PRICE COUNTY AREA

With the northwoods in the midst of the dog days of summer, angling success has hit the midsummer low point. Largemouth bass have been providing the most consistent action. The best success has been coming from the shaded areas and thick cover. Topwater baits and soft plastics have been the most productive lures, and the key has been to work them slowly through the cover. Smallmouth bass have remained a bit tough to find with just a few nice fish being caught on a slow presentation of plastic finesse baits worked near cover in the 6- to 12-foot depths. Muskie action has also slowed in the last week, with many anglers becoming frustrated with the variable success. The high temperatures seem to have pushed the fish to deeper water, and no consistent patterns have been found. Crankbaits, smaller bucktails, and Bulldawg-type baits have been the favorite lures. Walleye success has also continued its erratic trend. Some days have produced some fair catches in and around mid-depth weedbeds. Weedless jigs fished with leeches or crawler-halves have been the most productive baits.

Bridge Bait and Tackle, Park Falls, (715) 762-4108

Ross’s Sport Shop, Phillips, (715) 339-3625

SPOONER AREA

Spooner Lake is producing largemouth bass and small pike along most weedlines. Look for sunfish in the reeds of Shell Lake and Spooner as well.

AAA Sports Shop, (715) 635-3011

 

Categories: North (Central), Wisconsin Fishing Reports

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