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Friday, July 20, 2018

Fishing Report 7-20-18

Hey Gang,

I was out a bunch this week, but apparently I was about the only one. I didn't get my usual batch of reports in from my other "people" this week, so just a quickie update.

Water temps are solidly in the low to 80's around the area now. If the weather cools, expect it to drop back into the low 70's, but as long as it stays sunny and hot, you'll need to play the conditions. As always this time of year, you'll do better early and late in the day, but if you adapt your tactics during the day, you can catch fish essentially any time of day. Algae blooms are occurring on many area lakes, so expect dirtier than normal water as you head out.

Baitfish have been fairly plentiful, but concentrated to smaller areas than is common...find the food and you'll quickly find fish.

Bass fishing was a bit off in the early part of this week with the bright skies and high pressure, but fishing was slow and steady. I caught most of my fish this week out of areas I would expect to catch them, but I had to dig into the bag of tricks a couple of times to put fish in the boat consistently.

Primary pattern: weeds along transition areas or at the ends of points. This is where the active fish are/were. Working these areas with a topwater produced early, and I could go back to productive areas later on and catch fish by finessing them out of the weeds. Docks and slop were better mid-day, especially shady docks adjacent to deeper water. Between these things you'll need to cover water, and I caught some quality fish on both grubs (watermelon or green pumpkin) as well as smaller squarebill Norman crankbaits. Up shallow, nothing fancy...wacky, ned rigs, tubes or skirted grubs/jig and craw trailers. I will say this...I threw some different options this week to limited success. I ended up going back to the staples...jigworms and a light carolina-style rig each day to catch fish.

Panfish: About what you should expect for summer. There's "fun" fish around docks and swim platforms if you're heading out with the kids...a simple small bobber and ice fishing jig or #10 or #12 sized hook tipped with a waxworm or spike will produce. If you're looking for keepers...I have two suggestions: fish off the deep weed edges for suspended fish, or look for them in areas with the most current you can find. We caught a nice batch of keepers with the kids one afternoon this week in a very small spot by getting the bait through the smaller gills at the top of the school. I used a small, but reaasonably heavy tungsten jig to get the presentation to sink fast enough it passed the fish at the top of the school.

Pike: Nothing consistent to report. Caught some throwing lip less cranks as well as when I was throwing topwaters for bass. Had a couple nice ones in the boat on Monday morning on a buzzbait thrown over submergent vegetation where we saw some small bluegills in the tops of the weeds.

Musky: Been tough with the heat but if you play your solar lunar table and hit your windows, you can have some solid topwater or glider action, in some surprisingly shallow water. That's all I am going to say on this.

I didn't hear anything new on walleyes or crappie this week, so you can look back at my report from Monday (here) for the last bit of information I had.


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