Muskies and Bass!
Posted on June 20, 2012
Musky action is picking up this week. Witness the Curt Ebert Boom Lake Tournament held this past weekend where nearly 20 fish were registered including one in the 47” range. Musky fishing has been slow but if that 2-day tourney is any indication it’s picking up. The combination of steady weather and lack of cold fronts is probably the reason but whatever the cause this is good news for area anglers.
Musky fishing in summer is often very good under overcast skies and that was the case for the tournament. Look for similar conditions in the days ahead. We really like those days of heavy cloud, rising humidity and westerly or southerly winds and we’ve seen a few of them this week. Muskies can be very active during daylight hours on those days and it’s worth the effort to get out on the water. One cautions needs to be noted, that being the possibility of heavy storms in late afternoons. Keep an eye on the sky (weather usually moves in from the west or south) and if things look ugly get to shore. Heavy rains and strong winds can hit in a very short time.
We are seeing muskies take a variety of lures with top water lures doing well, especially on cloudy days or evenings.
Walleyes remain on the slow end of the spectrum and have been that way most of the season. We’d work the typical June areas of deeper weedbeds and use jigs tipped with leeches or crawlers worked along the edges of the thicker cover. Evenings are usually best but on a day of thick clouds we’ll see fish boated at all hours.
Bass season, the catch-and-keep season, opened last Saturday and early reports were good. Largemouth should be coming on strong in this warmer weather and the past days have confirmed that with decent fishing coming in the evening hours but also during the day on some of those cloudy days that are good for musky fishing as well. We saw largemouth taking some basic minnow imitations and that’s always a good idea. Work the Rapala or similar along the edges of lily pads or toss a weedless frog lure into the thick stuff.
Smallmouth bass have been in deeper water and we did not see as many this weekend as we did largemouth. In this hot weather fishing for them in the Wisconsin River down from Rhinelander is always an option. Wading the shallow stretches below Hat Rapids Dam and tossing a swimming jig is often very productive.
Panfish action has slowed some with the one exception being some hot action on bluegills. There are still some big bluegills acting pretty aggressive and there have been some good catches on them. We’ve heard of anything from small jigs and minnows to Beetle Spins and Mepps Spinners taking ‘gills. We would expect some good fishing for bluegills to continue into the weekend.