Northern Wisconsin Fishing Report – November 13th, 2015
The only consistent fishing report has come off the Apple River, where large suckers are producing muskies. Duck and deer hunting reports have been favorable, and the bigger bucks really started to move during the past week.
Lucky Baits (715) 268-6231
This report is about the Ashland side of Chequamegon Bay. Well, we got that rain we wanted and then some! As soon as the water clears we should see some new fish, including brown trout, salmon, and steelhead in the area streams and rivers. The late-season warm weather provided for some noteworthy stream fishing. High skies, high temperatures, low and clear water: the perfect recipe for good steelhead fishing, apparently. Smallmouth bass were into their fall feeding patterns, frequenting their usual autumn haunts such as the breakwall and the marina. They are starting to school more and become more active. The walleyes are around in decent numbers, with people finding them in the same places they’ve been catching smallmouth bass. Walleyes have been out around the rock pile and on the humps in the bay. Suckers are a good bait to use for them right now.
Angler’s All, (715) 682-5754
River Rock, (715) 682-3232
EAGLE RIVER AREA
The delay in this year’s colder fall weather is the latest in memory. This has had a negative effect on the fishing, with especially the muskies slowing down or feeding at night. Colder weather will be very welcome for our fall anglers. We have had a lot of rain, which is welcome for the water levels, but it sure was miserable to be out fishing in. Water temps were in the mid- to high 40s and have been there for the past three weeks. They have been very reluctant to go down, and are unusually similar for all sizes of lakes.
Walleyes have been OK, but not great for the last week or so. The same conditions that are so negatively affecting the muskie anglers are slowing the walleyes down a little. These high water temps are just not triggering a fall spurt. The walleyes are not in the holes on the Eagle River chain as much as they usually are because the water temps are roughly 5 to 8 degrees higher than normal. There have been years when lakes (except North Twin and Long) were frozen in early November. We just have to wait for that last-gasp fishing to start after the weather has changed.
The big lakes like North Twin are suffering the same pattern. The bite had started in deeper water, but has slowed with the lack of change in the water temps.
Eagle Sports Center, (715) 479-8804
Muskies are hitting large suckers in 10 to 12 feet on the Chippewa Flowage and Lake Namakagon. Look for suspended crappies over 15 feet on Grindstone Lake, Lake Lac Courte Oreilles, and the Chippewa Flowage. A few walleyes are being taken with minnows in 15 feet on Lac Courte Oreilles, the Chippewa Flowage, and Grindstone. Duck and grouse hunting remains good for most parties, and archery hunters are starting to see bigger bucks during daylight hours. Muskie action is fair to inconsistently good, with mornings and evenings providing the best bite. Target weedbeds and deep weed edges. On other lakes, walleye fishing is fair, but showing improvement with the cooling water and fish moving into their fall patterns. Concentrate on water out to 25 feet and deeper, and fish near the bottom on breaks and in holes. On the rivers, fish rocky shorelines along the river channel. Northern pike action is good on shallow to mid-depth (5 to 18 feet) weeds and weedlines with northern suckers, spinners, spinnerbaits, spoons, and chatterbaits. Smallmouth anglers are having good success fishing rock, weeds, hard bottoms, and other structure in 12 to 20 feet with suckers, crawlers, and crankbaits.
Hayward Bait, (715) 634-2921
Hayward Lakes Visitor and Convention Bureau, (800) 724-2992
Bass fishing has been good in the Menominee River. Fair numbers of muskies and pike are being caught, too, along with light numbers of salmon and trout. Bowhunting has been good and should improve now that bucks are chasing does. Partridge hunting should improve, too, with less cover in the woods.
Hook, Line and Sinker, (715) 854-2073
MINOCQUA/WOODRUFF/ LAKE TOMAHAWK AREA
Water temps have dropped, with surface temps at 45 degrees to as high as 52 degrees.
Muskies: Good to very good. Most reports from anglers who are still working with suckers have been very good. Most of the fish were from 40 to 48 inches this past week. There have been multi-fish trips with enough action on slow-working gliders and jointed crankbaits to keep casting a viable option.
Walleyes: Good to fair. Action is slowing a bit as waters cool. There is a shallow bite on jigs and chubs or muds, but even that’s getting slower as the shallows cool. Success over deep water is all about being able to hover over fish during windows of activity. Larger chubs and suckers on Lindy-style rigs have worked the best.
Crappies: Fair. Fewer anglers are still going out. Slow-fish medium fatheads on slip floats around deep wood. It’s not easy on some windy days, but with good boat control on the light to moderate days, decent catches of nice slabs are still available.
Most smallmouth bass and northern pike have been incidental catches. Same thing with yellow perch.
Fishing hasn’t been bad when it’s not windy. There is still plenty of time to try and boat that big muskie of the year or add a walleye or two to the freezer.
Island Sport Shop, (715) 356-4797
J and J Sports, (715) 277-2616
PRICE COUNTY AREA
Windy, cool, and wet weather seemed to limit the fishing activity in the northwoods. Water temperatures have been holding in the upper-40s and muskie anglers have continued to provide most of the fishing pressure on our local lakes. Success for muskies has been inconsistent, and most anglers have reported somewhat slow fishing conditions with active muskies being a bit tough to come by. Some fishermen are still tossing artificial baits and their slow action is being echoed by many of the sucker anglers. But there have been a few positive reports with some mid-40-inch fish being caught during the past week. There has been a recent surge in crappie action with a couple reports of some decent catches. The crappies have been suspended over the deep-water areas, with a small minnow on a slip bobber providing the best success. Walleye fishing continues to be generally slow, with only a few reports of catches being made.
Bridge Bait and Tackle, Park Falls, (715) 762-4108
Ross’s Sport Shop, Phillips, (715) 339-3625
Muskie action has been very good on many area lakes with large sucker minnows, and crappies are being found suspended over 26 to 30 feet at Long Lake. Duck and grouse numbers remain spotty, and several large bucks were shot again this week by local archery hunters.
AAA Sports Shop, (715) 635-3011
Walleyes continue to hit minnows in 10 feet at Island Lake, and crappies are showing up in the Highbanks area of Fish Lake over 12 feet. Grouse hunters are offering favorable reports and there’s been an increase in the number of bucks shot by archery hunters.
Chalstrom’s Bait (218) 726-0094