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Tuesday, May 28th, 2024

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Tuesday, May 28th, 2024

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Steve Heiting

Want a giant walleye? Try fishing for muskies

Just as I had done a thousand times that week, I swung the big crankbait around in a figure-eight alongside the boat. As the crankbait hesitated in a turn, a fish flashed out from beneath the boat and T-boned the lure.
I set the hook and grunted “Fish!” to let my partner know I was hooked up to what I thought was about a 40-inch muskie, judging by the width of its head. But I was stunned to see a white tip on the fish’s tail waving much farther back in the water than it should have been.
I’m a muskie fisherman first, and all the walleyes that hit muskie baits were incidental catches. But when something occurs multiple times when fishing, you’ve discovered a pattern, and big walleyes on big baits is a great one.

Want a giant walleye? Try fishing for muskies Read More »

Catching muskies from the ‘wrong’ side of the boat

The muskie’s “shadow” on the side imaging electronics was unmistakable – and it appeared in the opposite direction of where we were casting. At my suggestion that he throw a cast at the fish to see what would happen, my friend Charlie Buhler lobbed a soft plastic bait.
As he worked the lure, a muskie appeared behind it. Buhler swung the multi-tailed lure into a big figure-eight, and the water exploded as the muskie grabbed on. What Buhler did to catch that muskie is what some anglers call “wrong way” casting. Let me explain.

Catching muskies from the ‘wrong’ side of the boat Read More »

Here’s how to self-film your fishing trips

Even if you don’t dream of being a social media influencer, you should consider filming fishing outings. Not only is it a fun way to relive the excitement of catching a big fish, but the camera is an impartial observer that can help you become a better angler. Cast a critical eye at the footage a camera produces and you will not only see what you did right but – more importantly – what you may have done wrong.

Here’s how to self-film your fishing trips Read More »

Does color really matter with muskie baits?

The term “every color of the rainbow” doesn’t apply to fishing lures, especially those designed for muskies. Lure manufacturers today offer far more options than even Mother Nature ever dreamed. A skeptic may say wild colors are simply an attempt to sell more lures, but an angler with a hot lure would argue otherwise. And a newcomer to the sport may find it all very confusing.
So, does lure color really matter?

Does color really matter with muskie baits? Read More »

Return to the river is a trip back to angling roots

Poets may say a brook babbles; writers will say a river murmurs. Those who truly understand the language of flowing waters know they whisper the voices of those who have gone before.
Driving many miles that still, rainy morning in June, I failed to recall the last time I had been there. But the river knew, and whispered “Where you been, boy? It’s been too long … where did you get the gray hair?”

Return to the river is a trip back to angling roots Read More »

Big tiger muskie caught for at least the third time in Wisconsin

Thanks to the practice of catch-and-release, the thrill of boating a big tiger muskie has been experienced by at least two visitors to Wisconsin’s Northwoods.
On June 10, longtime muskie angler Ken Williams, of Fishers, Ind., caught a 45 1⁄2-inch tiger muskie when it struck a Musky Innovations Swimmin’ Dawg. He caught the fish from a weed-covered, mid-lake hump. When I texted a photo of Williams’ tiger to lodge owner and guide Rob Manthei, he recognized the fish as one that has twice been caught from his boat.

Big tiger muskie caught for at least the third time in Wisconsin Read More »

Trempealeau County turkeys coy, but callable in Wisconsin

Had I spent another minute cutting prickly ash to create a spot to sit against a giant oak along a field edge, I may not have had a chance to kill a gobbler during Wisconsin’s second turkey hunting period. Let me explain.
The morning of April 26 dawned clear, cold and quiet as I sat on the edge of a field in Trempealeau County. No gobbling greeted the daylight, and the only turkey action I saw was the fly-down of two birds on the far side of the field.

Trempealeau County turkeys coy, but callable in Wisconsin Read More »

Avoid these five common mistakes made by muskie anglers

I pulled the line above the reel to check the drag and found it paid out easily, much too loose to get hooks into a big fish.
As the guide, I made the mistake of not checking my client’s drag before we started fishing. In my defense, my client was a veteran of dozens of fishing tournaments, so I figured he knew better. In the 30-plus years I have taught fishing schools and guided fishermen, I’ve seen them make a lot of mistakes. Following are the five most common. Fortunately, all are easily corrected.

Avoid these five common mistakes made by muskie anglers Read More »

Where to target muskies: Hard or ‘soft’ structure in warm weather?

One of the great mysteries in muskie fishing is where to find them, or at least where to find fish that will bite today. Should we fish hard structure or soft? There is no simple answer that will apply to every day – where you should fish varies with the day and the season.
Structure as defined in fishing lexicon is the bottom of the lake that doesn’t change, like breaklines and rocks. “Cover” on the other hand, is the stuff that changes or disappears with time, such as weeds, fallen trees, man-made cribs, etc. All fish species use structure and/or cover at some point every year.

Where to target muskies: Hard or ‘soft’ structure in warm weather? Read More »

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