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Friday, July 24, 2015

Fishing Report 7-23-15

The stable weather the last week really got things going. Even on the sunny days with limited wind, the fish were moving and biting very well.





I was out on Okauchee, Oconomowoc, North, Silver, Golden and Ashippun.

After the hot temps last weekend water temps are in the mid to high 70's. Most fish are still chasing baitfish, but it is obvious a few are starting to probe rocks and sand for craws.

Bass fishing was on fire this past week. Numbers of smaller fish were being caught, but as the weather pattern picked up, some bigger fish started showing up in steady numbers. Deep weedlines out to 20 FOW are still giving up solid numbers, but the story of the week is the piers, which are finally getting consistent. Texas rigs, Carolina Rigs and  live bait rigs with leeches, large shiners, chubs or suckers for the deep fish. Wacky, grubs, skirted grubs (HOT BAIT This week) jigworms, and smaller squarebills crankbaits are catching fish out of the shallow water. Open water top water fishing has been good on mainlake and secondary points, and the slop is finally getting to where one expects it for this time of year (although I put in just a limited amount of time fishing slop this week, I did better flipping and punching than topwater.)

Smallmouth fishing was better this week, but still slow compared to LM. Fish are cruising shallow bars and grades a couple times a day. Fish tubes, wacky and grubs, or bust out the small mid-depth crawfish immitating cranks. Drop shotting was still producing. Top water fishing was picking up, especially in areas where you see schools of pin minnows. Smaller profile baits seemed a better option.

Musky fishing was picking up with the stable weather and fish continue to be very active. Points and drops with weeds nearby is where I saw most fish this week, but I have been bass fishing more this week than last.

Walleye fishing is picking back up.. Slip bobbers, with live bait, jigs with plastics or lindy rigs, fished near the weeds are producing. At night, back troll with suckers on lindy/slip sinker rigs in 18-22 fow, targeting areas with healthy sandgrass or fish floating rapalas/minnowbaits around weedclumps after dark.

Bluegills are doing their summer thing. Look for them to suspend along the weedlines or out over deeper water. 12-18 feet deep over much deeper water is a great starting point. Drifting along the deep edges with bait suspended vertically is a solid presentation option.

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Okauchee:The Tie Up is this Saturday. Public launch remains closed. Bass are on the piers, in pads and slop and on the weed edges in deeper water/along mainlake structure. Panfish are suspending deep, but adjacent to the points.

Garvin: Musky have been active, bass bite has been off and on. Bluegills suspending over deep cover on east shoreline points. Bass biting awesome on live bait fished on deep weed edges.

Oconomowoc:  Bass are tight to visible weed clumps, panfish are on the deep weedlines (use a split shot or light lindy rig and a panfish leech). Musky fishing continues to be hot, with lots of fish moving over/around the tops of weeds at the end of points.

Fowler: No reports this week.

Lac Labelle: Walleye fishing was slow, but steady. Target weed edges along the 8-12 foot breaks and drop-offs in 10-18 FOW, but be ready to move out deep o 25+. Jigs and rigs with live bait, best action has been 6-8am and again just before dark. Keepers are strickly a nightime thing. Bass fishing was better, with plenty of smallmouths being caught.

Moose:  Bass feeding shallow early, then moving out deep. Look for baitfish, and work small areas hard.
 
Ashipunn: Bass and pike were better than most lakes, feeding actively in short spirts. Concentrate on the visible weed patches, and work them from a variety of angles with spinners or plastics. Piers holding some quality fish, but way underneath. Panfish are suspending in the deep part of the basin, about 18-22 foot down.

Golden: Bluegills in deep water, holding close to weed edges. Bass- Topwaters, plastics and spinners are all producing. Pike have been biting, especially on small suckers fished along the deep weedlines and on spinnerbaits or buzzbaits fished through the weedy areas.

Silver:  Crappies have been suspending over the east cribs, and keeper bluegills are holding in the deep sandgrass in 18-25 FOW. Bass fishing was slower than normal, and the larger fish have been increasingly harder to come by.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Fishing Report 7-16-15

Unstable weather cooled the fishing down this week, and with a hot (potentially the hottest) weekend on the way, things will be a bit tough on the water.

Water temps are in the low to mid 70's. Pin Minnows and Juvenile Perch are being targeted, but a few fish are starting to make foraging runs up onto the rocks....the molt is imminent.

Bass fishing slowed way down this week, both in terms of people our fishing and catches. Deep weedlines out to 20 FOW, piers-especially, slop and shallow bars near deep water continue to hold fish, but getting them to bite consistently has been trouble. Texas rigs, Carolina Rigs and  live bait rigs with leeches, large shiners, chubs or suckers for the deep fish. Wacky, grubs, skirted grubs jigworms, and smaller squarebills crankbaits are catching fish out of the shallow water. Open water top water fishing has been good on mainlake and secondary points, but only until mid morning, with a limited bite in the evenings.


Smallmouth fishing has been very tough, but you can catch fish by getting more precise and downsizing. Fish tubes, wacky and grubs. Drop shotting, especially along distinct weed clumps put some fish in the boat, but the strike zone was very small. Top water fish were very hard to come by consistently, but after the next batch of weather, that bite should pick up, especially in areas where you see schools of pin minnows.

Musky fishing was slow, but fish have been very active. Fish have really been using weed clumps on the end of long points as a feeding/ambush location and I've personally raised a couple using a smaller bucktail. (Thanks to Muskie Metal!)

Walleye fishing has remained slow. Slip bobbers, with live bait, jigs with plastics or lindy rigs, fished near the weeds are producing, but expect the bite to slow down in the heavy heat this weekekend. At night, back troll with suckers on lindy/slip sinker rigs in 18-22 fow, targeting areas with healthy sandgrass or fish floating rapalas/minnowbaits around weedclumps after dark.

Bluegills are doing their summer thing. Look for them to suspend along the weedlines or out over deeper water. 12-18 feet deep over much deeper water is a great starting point. Drifting along the deep edges with bait suspended vertically is a solid presentation option.

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Okauchee: Public launch remains closed. Bass are on the piers, in pads and slop and on the weed edges in deeper water/along mainlake structure.  Pike have been active, especially in deep areas with quick access to shallow weeds. Panfish are suspending deep, but adjacent to the points.

Garvin: Musky have been active, bass bite has been off and on. Bluegills suspending over deep cover on east shoreline points.

Oconomowoc:  Bass are suspending off the deep ends of the mainlake points, coming in for limited periods of high activity. Tight to visible weed clumps will produce some bass, panfish are on the deep weedlines (use a split shot or light lindy rig and a panfish leech). Musky fishing continues to be hot, with lots of fish moving over/around the tops of weeds at the end of points.

Fowler: Very slow the last 10 days. Bass are in the slop and in the river grass. No word on musky, buzzbaits taking some pike out of isolated weed clumps

Lac Labelle: Walleye fishing was slow, but steady. Target weed edges along the 8-12 foot breaks and drop-offs in 10-18 FOW, but be ready to move out deep o 25+. Jigs and rigs with live bait, best action has been 6-8am and again just before dark. Keepers are strickly a nightime thing. Bass fishing has been slow, and most fish are "incidental" catches to walleye fishing.

Moose:  Bass and pike both slow. Crappie and Bluegills are suspending deep and around swim platforms. Bass feeding early, then moving out deep. Look for baitfish, and work small areas hard.
 
Ashipunn: Bass and pike were better than most lakes, but also deeper. Concentrate on the visible weed patches, and work them from a variety of angles with spinners or plastics. Piers holding some smaller fish. Panfish are suspending in the deep part of the basin, about 18-22 foot down.

Golden: Bluegills in deep water, holding close to weed edges. Bass have been biting along inside weedlines but docks and the slop are still holding some fish. Topwaters, plastics and spinners are all producing. Pike have been biting, especially on small suckers fished along the deep weedlines and on spinnerbaits or buzzbaits fished through the weedy areas.

Silver:  Crappies have been suspending over the east cribs, and keeper bluegills are holding in the deep sandgrass in 18-25 FOW. Bass fishing was slower than normal.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Fishing Report 7-10-15

The cooler, but stable weather, has really improved the fishing, but being precise with presentations, and paying attention to the details is helping to pattern fish, which leads to better fishing.

Water temps are in the low to mid 70's. There was a smaller baitfish hatch this past week (pin minnows) and weeds are still behind, but things have improved dramatically over the last two weeks.



Anglers are catching a mixed bag of largemouths. Deep weedlines in 12-18 FOW, piers-especially with rock or sand underneath, slop and shallow bars near deep water are all holding fish. Texas rigs, slow rolled, spinnerbaits and crankbaits or live bait rigs with leeches, large shiners, chubs or suckers are catching the deeper fish. Wacky, grubs, skirted grubs jigworms, pre-rigged worms and smaller squarebills crankbaits are catching fish out of the shallow water. Open water top water fishing has been good along the deep edges of mainlake points, but only until abut 8am. (Hot tip-with the weed growth this year, areas on deeper sand or gravel which can be hard to fish are more open, and I've been working a carolina rig with some significant success.)

Smallmouth fishing has been very steady this past week with many smallmouth suspending just off the structure in the deeper water. By mid-morning, expect to start seeing wolfpack groups foraging in the shallow rocks, or rock/sand transition areas. Right now, keep it simple fish tubes, wacky and grubs. If the bite is tough, downsize a bit. (Always a solid bet, but it has been especially true this year) A wacky rig with a french fry in place of a senko style bait can convert some tough biters.  Floating rapalas, spooks and pop-r's are catching some topwater fish, and drop shotting is catching some of the deeper fish. Shades of watermelon or watermelon red seem to be the most productive... no science on that, just an observation.

Musky fishing has been on fire since the weather cooled off.  Trolling deep with big cranks and jerkbaits has been the primary pattern, but a few fish are being taken on topwaters, again early and late in the day. Gliders fished fast along turns in the deep weedlines has also been productive. Fish have really been using weed clumps on the end of long points as a feeding/ambush location.

Walleye fishing has remained slow. Slip bobbers, with leeches, fished over weeds is usually a pretty good daytime presentation this time of year,. At night, back troll with suckers on lindy/slip sinker rigs in 18-22 fow, targeting areas with healthy sandgrass.

Bluegills are doing their summer thing. Look for them to suspend along the weedlines or out over deeper water. 12-18 feet deep over much deeper water is a great starting point. Drifting along the deep edges with bait suspended vertically is a solid presentation option.  (Hot tip: crickets, panfish leeches and helgramites are producing the better gills.

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Okauchee: Public launch remains closed. Bass are on the piers, in pads and slop and on the weed edges in 8-12 feet. Musky are feeding in the shallows in the morning, and then moving out to 18-22 feet. Pike have been active, especially in deep areas with quick access to shallow weeds.

Garvin: Great spot for panfish. Look for the sunken wood in 10-15 feet.  Bass are using the weedline turns. Pike have come off the deep weedlines on the northwest and north east corners, and suspending over the deeper water.

Forest: Panfish and pike have been biting. Live bait over the deep holes on slip bobbers for panfish, inline spinners for the pike.

Oconomowoc:  Bass are suspending off the deep ends of the mainlake points, coming in onto to feed. Largemouths are still more active than smallmouth. Musky fishing was picking up with a fair number of l people reporting that they are seeing fish over the tops of weeds at the end of points.

Fowler: Small panfish are biting, a few LM were caught in the river and out of the deep slop. Pike are on the weedlines. Musky have been slow the last week.

Lac Labelle: Walleye fishing was steady, but a little slow on weed edges along the 8-12 foot breaks and drop-offs in 10-18 FOW. Best action has been 6-8am and again just before dark.

Moose:  Bass and pike continue to bite, and action has been steady. Target the breaks and weed clumps in deeper water with crankbaits or spinners.
 
Ashipunn: Bass and pike have been good. Concentrate on the visible weed patches, and work them from a variety of angles with spinners or plastics. Panfish are suspending in the deep part of the basin, about 18-22 foot down.

Golden: Bluegills have moved out to deeper water, holding close to weed edges. Typically, bass have been biting best on deeper weedlines but docks and the slop are both holding some fish. Topwaters, plastics and spinners are all producing. Pike have been biting, especially on small suckers fished along the deep weedlines and on spinnerbaits or buzzbaits fished through the weedy areas.

Silver:  Crappies have been suspending over the east cribs, and keeper bluegills are holding in the deep sandgrass in 18-25 FOW. Bass fishing has been very productive for the typical (under)sized Silver Lake Bass.


If you've got specific questions: Feel free to email me.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Openings

Hey gang,

I have a bunch of dates open in the second half of this month. I can do a special price on bookings for open dates in July.

Multispecies guiding or fishing lessons.

Email me for more details

Cheers,
CT

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Fishing Report 4th of July Weekend 2015

Hey gang,

Big Holiday Weekend Ahead, with lots of boats on the water. Be careful out there. Water temperatures are in the mid to high 70's. Weed growth is just behind average for the midpoint of the summer.

Panfish are largely done with the ritual, but there are a few fish still spawning on some area lakes. Out with the kids? - Action with bluegills can be found in shallow water areas where there is sand or gravel, but bigger gills can be caught out of spawning areas in as deep as 18 feet of water down 12-18' over much deeper water. Meanwhile, crappies are relating to weed edges between 8-12 feet or suspending over deeper water. For gills: hellgramites, panfish leeches, waxies or redworms are all good options, while crappie will be taken more frequently on small or large fatheads, plastics tipped with waxies or spikes or on small hair jigs. Best Bets: Upper Gennessee , Silver, Ashippun Upper and Lower Nashotah, Fowler, Garvin, Okauchee, Nagawicka, Forest.

Largemouth bass have been shallow, and making two feeding runs a day, so fishing has been both good and tough on the same day. Be ready to adapt to changes on the water. As for a strategy: Say it with me: Rocks and Rocks. Skipping piers is producing a few fish, but less than would be typical for the middle of summer. Slop has been decent, but only on the sunny and still days, and only around pads or slop where visible baitfish are present. Fish are feeding, but their strike zone has been tighter than I would normally expect...so I recommend a finesse approach: Wacky Worms, Shakey heads, flapper grubs and tubes in shallow water, with dropshot, jigworms, skirted grubs on a football head and Slider rigs catching the deeper fish (12-18 FOW). Don't be afraid to downsize if the bite is tough, or during the middle part of the day. If you're an early riser, topwater poppers, spooks and buzzbaits are catching some nice fish off the weedflats in 5-12 feet right now, but only consistently at first light, the topwater bite has been wrapping up around 8am. Best Bets: Pewaukee, Fox, Emily, Okauchee, Moose, Golden, Nagawicka, School Section and Kessus.

Smallmouth bass fishing has also been good, but most anglers are catching mixed bags of smallies and largies in the same areas. Do the same things for both species, but look for smallies suspending around the ends of rocky points and bars both early and later in the day. Grubs, tubes, wacky worms, shakey heads are catching some consistent bags of fish. Lindy rigging areas of deep sand with small suckers, large shiners or leeches can be the ticket for a tough bite, but my tip for this week: if you see lots of baitfish that are pin or shiner minnows around rock or rock weed transitions, use a suspending  jerkbait (like a Rouge) or floating Rapala. (That Shadow Rap they are hawking is good enough I'll give it a thumbs up without anyone even paying me to do so.) Best Bets: Nagawicka, North, Okauchee, the Oconomowoc River, Lac Labelle and Oconomowoc.

Walleye fishing has been very good. You'll need to be ready to move around. Fish are coming shallow (5-9 FOW) but are also in the deeper weeds (12-18FOW) but have also been in the sandgrass in 22-30+ FOW. Fish are being caught along shallow inside and outside weed edges or off deeper flats with sandgrass. Vertically jigging with live bait or plastics has been better during the day, while throwing cranks and minnow baits has been producing early and late. Suckers, backtrolled on lindy or a slip-sinker rig has been producing the larger fish Best Bets: Lac Labelle for action, Oconomowoc or North for keepers.

Pike fishing has been red hot  lately. Lots of smaller pike are using the shallow weedflats to feed on small gills and juvenile perch. Spinners baits, small bucktails or buzzbaits will produce when fished tight to weedclumps. Looking for something bigger? Move out to the weedline in 12-18 feet of water and fish with suckers or large shiners on a slip sinker rig with a heavy flourocarbon leader. Moose, Kessus, Golden,  Nagawicka, Garvin, Okauchee and School Section are your best pike lakes right now.

Musky fishing has slow, but steady. Look for them to be suspended around schools of cisco or bluegills over the deep water, along the deepest weed edges or adjacent to deep water structure, especially the deep end of long points. Most of the fish are being caught along the weed edges but a few are still coming on topwater around mid-depth rocks (8-12 FOW) during low light periods.  Please be careful with caught muskies this time of year. Give them plenty of time when reviving them, and don't keep them out of the water any longer than necessary.


Good Luck, and stay safe.
CT

Friday, June 26, 2015

Fishing Report 6-26-15

Hey gang,

I was out five days this week fishing on Moose, Oconomowoc, Lac Labelle, Silver, Golden and Ashippun. I did a mix of mornings, middays and evening outings.

Fishing has picked up a bit, but the unstable weather continues to make patterning fish difficult. Water is in the mid to high 70's. Weed growth has finally caught up, but baitfish remain hard to pinpoint consistently.

My basic advice...stick to the basics, and fish hard in high percentage areas. Keep it simple, and be ready to make some adjustments as conditions change throughout the day.

Panfish are still spawning (I saw fish paired up on nests laying eggs today), but some fish have already moved out and started to suspend. Crappie are hanging just off the deeper weedlines or over humps. Slip bobbers or vertically tightlining are your best approaches. Bluegills on the nests are finishing their ritual, but you can find some quality fish down 12-18' over much deeper water. Helgramites are in season, but waxies on plastics, panfish leeches on slip sinker/lindy rigs or split shotting are all producing. (Ashippun, Golden, School Section, Lower Nashotah, Garvin, Middle and Upper Genessee and Forest.)

Bass fishing really picked up this week, but you need to be ready to fish hard and adapt on the water. Docks and Slop have gotten better (for largemouths) in the shallows, and fish are starting to get caught off the deeper edges and shelves, but the hot bite has been the smallmouth on the mid-depth rockbars and off the deeper points. I'm catching lots of fish around, but not necessarily under docks and pads. Skirted grubs and tubes are catching some better fish off the rocks, especially along gravel/weed transitions, and dropshot, jigworms, flappergrubs and Sliders are all really delivering the deeper fish. Wacky, tubes and Flukes are catching fish in shallow. Topwater is producing some schooling fish until about 8am.
 
Tough Bite? Drifting with live bait has been surprisingly effective this year. Find a weed-edge or some deep sand in 12-18FOW, and fish with leeches or small suckers on lindy rigs.
(LM: Silver, Golden, Pewaukee, Okauchee, Golden, Kessus, School Section, Lower Nashotah)
(SM: Nag, Oconomowoc, North, Lac Labelle)

Walleye fishing has hit summer pattern. Weeds at various depths (8-12 or 15-26 FOW) will hold fish. Jigs with plastics or live bait fished tight to weed patches (especially along the outside edges) will produce, but on windy days, drifting with live bait on lindy or slow death rigs is the ticket. Early and late, try floating rapalas over the top of visible weeds. (Lac Labelle, Nag, North, Oconomowoc, Fowler)

Musky Fishing has really turned on before 1st light and close to/just after dark. Topwater fishing was really good this week, especially around isolated shallow rocks. Spinners/ Bucktails of various types, jerkbaits and gliders are grabbing some fish off the weededges in 12-15 FOW, but only where there is some baitfish. Swimbaits are starting to turn on. (Fowler (on fire!), Lac Labelle, North, Okauchee, Oconomowoc, Pewaukee)

Good Luck.
CT