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Friday, April 27, 2018

Fishing Report 4-27-18 (Back in Action)


This sudden burst of warm weather really had my email filled up with questions, so I guess its time to get our weekly reports back up. After all, I got the boat prepped yesterday.

Water temps are in the high 40's to low 50's. With the cooler nights, the water is not warming up quickly, but if we get some of the stable warm weather they are predicting, expect things to happen quicklu.

To rate it: fishing is a little below average for this time of year, but is set to get good very, very quickly.

Crappies are startting to get active in the usual early spots. Look for them in shallow, protected areas with a north bank, boat channels, near areas with reeds or wood laydowns or adjacent to current.  Small minnows, tail hooked, and suspended under a bobber is the best way to catch crappies, but if the bite is tough, don't overlook waxworms on an icefishing jig or a small #10 or #12 red hook or ice fishing jig. I've heard from folks having mixed success on Okauchee, Oconomowoc, North, Pine, Garvin, Moose, Nag and Golden.

Bluegills are starting to move in, but it is still very early. Look for shallow, dark bottom bays with scattered weeds, woods or reeds. The fish may be very tight to shore. In areas with current, look for schools of fish in deeper holes and outside turns, even if these areas are very small. Remember the largest panfish will always be in the bottom of the school, so if you're catching fish, but they are small, try getting your bait a little deeper. Bluegills will hit on a variety of live bait, including redworms, waxworms and spikes. For active bluegills, plastics will outperform live bait, and will usually help keep some of the smaller fish off your line.

Walleyes, a few whitebass and some cats continue to bite on the Rock River in Jefferson. Fish are still being taken from shellbeds, rockpiles and in the channel swings. Three way rigs with live bait on a fly or casting with heavy jigs and plastics have both been producing. Look for whit bass at the mouths of feeder creeks or up the Crawfish and Bark Rivers. If you're on the main river, you may find some schools holding over shelves in slack water.

Gamefish opener is next weekend, and we'll have our usual preview post.

Note that: you can sign up for my fishing reports and have them delivered via email, as well as follow this blog. The links are in the column to the right. I'm going to try to do some new kinds of content this season, including some how to videos and maybe even some maps.

Finally, I have some openings in May, if you're interested in getting out...just email me.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Checking in: April 22, 2018

Hey gang,

The semester's almost over, and its time to start thinking about fishing.

Around the area, fishing continues, but a little behind schedule for most years. It looks like the weather is about to stabilize, so expect things to get going pretty quickly.

Area lakes are starting to see panfish moving into the traditional spots. Most reports have them still a bit spooky, but especially on warm, sunny afternoons, you can expect to get on them. Look for dark bottom bays or protected areas with a north facing shoreline. Areas with current or boat channels can also be productive. Go small with your presentations until you find some active fish.

River fishing has dropped off a bit in recent weeks. Water is still fairly cold for late April, but flows have been inconsistent and that has limited fishing. Close to home the Rock River is still giving up mixed bags of Walleyes and Cats, but the whitebass run hasn't really gotten started yet.

We're just two weeks out from the opener, which looks to be a bit on the chilly side this year. If you're starting to prep, my suggestion....think about fishing for post-spawn pike or very early pre-spawn bass on the local lakes. This year will be a fair bit different condition wise than the last couple of opening weekends, and you should plan accordingly.

Can't wait to be back and to hit the water.