Wind, cold and snow kept fishing pressure down this past week. With those who did venture out, fair catches were reported. Downsizing and finesse fishing were the key for getting fish on the ice. There is good news though, with temperatures rising to the 30’s and overcast, this coming week should make for improved and comfortable fishing conditions.
Northern Pike: Fair – Nothing new here, tip-ups with big suckers, golden shiners or river shiners will do the trick. Just pick your flavor of choice for the toothy critters, 8-14’ of water seems to be the preferred depths.
Walleye: Fair – The last hour before dusk and there on after seems to be producing fish more than morning times. Get out on a deeper weed edge and scatter some tip-ups with suckers or shiners. Jig fishermen were picking up fish using jigging spoons like pimples, flyer spoons, or slender spoons tipped with a minnow head, as well as, Slab Raps, Jigging Rapalas and Rippin Raps. No overcast the past days made for tougher fishing, but look for it to improve as the weather changes.
Crappies: Fair – Those who set-up in a shack last week caught some decent Crappies. Fishing would have been better if one could set tip-downs out, but Mother Nature wouldn’t let it happen. This week’s weather will allow it so make sure you bring them. Small #14, #16 trebles tipped with rosies or small fatheads for the set-up. As for jigging, Little Cecils, Flash Champs, and Leech Flutter Spoons produced well tipped with a minnow head or 2-3 waxies. Small single hook jigs like Tubby Jigs or Pug Bugs tipped with a small plastic like a wedge and also Beavertail caught fish as well
Yellow Perch: Fair As the ice improves, anglers are venturing out more finding Perch over mud flats. Mobility is the key to keeping up with the schools of Perch. Fish have also been showing up if you can find deep sparse weeds in that 10-15’ range. Wigglers, waxies, spikes have been all taking fish, but larger fatheads and rosies have been catching the larger Perch. If you don’t want to mess with live bait, K-Rips have also been taking some decent fish of late.
Bluegills: Fair – Gills continue to be caught in that 8-14’ range. Small tungsten jigs, Flirty Girtys and moon jigs tipped with mousees or spikes are all producing. Plastics and beavertails are helping in catching the larger fish though
Ice conditions are staying stable. We did have 5-8” of snow on Saturday, the good new is we had a lot of wind to help blow some of it off the larger lakes. ATV’s and snowmobiles are going out on some lakes. Just use caution, I did hear of some slushy spots popping up on smaller lakes. As of now, no vehicle traffic on lakes yet.
Ice Fishing Events
Feb 1st – 15th Annual United Way Ice Fishing Jamboree – Lake Minocqua at Stack’s Bay
Feb 1st – Kids Ice Fishing Day – Big Arbor Vitae Lake at Mielke Bay
Feb 15th – 4th Annual Rob Lemmer Memorial – Lake Katherine in Hazelhurst