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Thursday, August 4, 2011

Fishing Report 8-4-2011

Its a nice cool morning as I write this today. If this weather stabilizes some, expect fish activity to pick up. Right now water temp is as high as 87 degrees, practically a stir fry. The hot days we've been having mean that mornings and evenings, have been the periods of time of active fish feeding.

Anglers are still catching a mixed bag of largemouths, and there were some monsters taken in the Okauchee tournament on Sunday. Deep weedlines in 12-18 FOW, deep sand flats in 22-28 FOW, piers-especially with rock or sand underneath, slop and shallow bars near deep water are all holding fish at various points during the day. I'm not saying its gospel, but I would fish shallow early, and then move out to deeper structure as the sun gets up.

Texas rigs, slow rolled, spinnerbaits and crankbaits are your best options for catching the deeper fish.  10 inch power worms in black, red-shad and motoroil have been very good, as has swimming a heavy jig. Wacky, jigworms, pre-rigged worms, tubes, grubs and small crankbaits are catching fish out of the shallow water. Flipping the slop on florida rigged plastic craws isn't catching many fish, but the ones coming in have been top end for size. Personally, I continue to catch a nice batch of fish on flapper grubs fished over mid-depth weedflats in 8-12 FOW, including more than 30 caught in three hours in a little free fishing time after a guide trip this week.

Smallmouth are definitely suspending just off the structure in the deeper water. As the crayfish begin to molt over the next 15 days, expect to start seeing wolfpack groups foraging in the shallow rocks, or rock/sand transition areas. Right now, continue to fish a bit deeper, using tubes, wacky, skirted grubs and jigworms. If the bite is tough, downsize a bit. A wacky rig with a french fry in place of a senko style bait can be just the magic you need at this point in the season, and was a solid producer for me the last week.

Musky fishing slowed down with the last batch of hot weather. And let's not lie about it, this has been a tough season for musky overall. Trolling deep with big cranks and jerkbaits is still the primary pattern producing fish, 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. Speed trolling with shortlines has been catching a few smaller (35-40inch) fish that have moved in on the shallow weedlines.

Walleye fishing has been very tough. I'd go with slip bobbers, with leeches, fished over weed edges or deep sand flats with grass. At night, back troll with suckers on lindy/slip sinker rigs in 18-22 fow, targeting areas with healthy sandgrass. Longlining spinner harnesses around structure at the depth of the thermocline will also usually produce both day an night. You might find fish as deep as 35 FOW. For now, I'd continue to target other fish, but if the days cool off, the activity should pick up quickly.

Bluegills are in summer patterns. 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. I caught several keepers this week out of weed clumps at the end of mainlake structure.

Okauchee:  If you're going out, bass are on the piers, in the 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 very active in 15-22 FOW.

Garvin: Great spot for panfish. Look for the sunken wood in 10-15 feet or suspended around the springs in the deep part of the basin.  Bass are using the shallow flat on the south end and 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, bass have biting on leeches and large fatheads under bobbers, or on slip sinker rigs.

Oconomowoc: Mornings have been best, but a steady bite has been going all day. Fish are deeper than normal for this time of year. Bass are holding on the obvious structural breaks and suspending off the deep ends of the mainlake points. Largemouths are still more active than smallmouth. Northern pike are coming for those anglers who are back or slow trolling with slip sinkers baited with small suckers.  No report on Musky, which means the fishing was dead during the last stretch of hot weather.

Fowler: Small panfish are biting, a few LM were caught in the river and out of the deep slop. Pike are on the weedlines, a few trout were caught over the main part of the basin.

Lac Labelle: Walleye fishing was slow on weed edges along the 8-12 foot breaks and drop-offs in 10-18 FOW. Lots of fish are suspending about 15-18 feet down over the deepest water. Musky have moved out to suspend over deep water in the main basin, and fishing was at a standstill for them. Smallmouth have been active in the sand and rock areas in 6-10 and 15-22 FOW.

Moose:  Bass and pike continue to bite, and action has been best in the morning. Target the breaks and weed clumps in shallow water with crankbaits or spinners. Backtrolling with small suckers on a slip sinker rigs around the first major drop to deep water will produce if plastics or spinnerbaits aren't working.

Ashipunn: Bass and pike has been steady action. 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 15-18 foot down.

Golden: Bluegills are in deep water, suspending over the deep part of the basin, but holding close to weed edges and the major structure. Typically, bass have been on a deeper weedline bite. Topwaters, plastics and spinners are all producing. Pike have been biting, especially on small suckers fished along the deep weedlines and on buzzbaits fished through the weedy areas.

Silver:  Bass can be caught using plastics around the weed clumps in 4-15 feet or around piers and boat lifts. Crappies have been suspending over the east cribs, and keeper bluegills are holding in the deep sandgrass in 18-25 FOW. Water is very warm, and surprisingly cloudy with a heavy algae bloom right now.

Nagawicka: Largemouths are average, and in summer patterns so look to catch them off boat docks, in the slop and along the shallow weed edges. Pike have been average, especially on crankbaits or buzzbaits fished over weed edges at either end of the lake. No report on walleyes.

Pewaukee:Musky fishing is picking up, especially for the guides who have been trolling. Bass fishing has been very good.

Lower and Middle Genessee: Panfish have moved to the deeper water. Lindy rigging with live bait, especially dillys or leafworms or slip bobbering with plastics tipped with waxworms or spikes  has been very good for panfish. Night fishing is in full steam on Middle.

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

Good Luck Out There,