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Minocqua Area Fishing Report - 10/10/23

Looks as if we are into a typical October, unlike last year’s Augtober. Temps for the next two weeks forecasted to barely break fifty, mostly mid to upper 40’s. Lows in the mid-30’s to lower 40’s. We lost, on average, 8-10 degrees of surface temp since last week’s highs of 68 degrees, getting close to turn-over time on some lakes by this weekend. With these temps and the focus on certain fall species, the report is as follows…


Musky: Good-Very Good – With water temps dropping, the sucker bite has picked up. Fish still relatively shallow on suckers (8-14’). With all the wind (and rain) the top-water bite seemed to have fallen off (when turn-over hits I typically put them away) but bucktails were still scoring in water as shallow as 3’! Report from guide Jake Smith holding a low 40” fish caught on a Smity Large Jointed Crank, just this am (10/10) with reports of surface temp at 56 degrees shows just how close we are to turn-over. It will be gliders, jerks, twitches and suckers this weekend!


Walleye: Good-Fair – With noticeable thermoclines on many lakes about to break (due to turn-over) Walleye locations that have been relating to gravel/mud transitions of 18-30’ could break open into deeper depths. So far chubs and suckers on 1/4 – 3/8 oz jigs or fished Lindy rig style as well as Shiver Minnows and Jigging Raps have produced. Some Walleyes weed related, but could change for a while after turn-over. Check out deep mud of 30-40’, but be slow on presentation and especially bringing up fish from such depths. Flowage Walleyes relating to wood, but all are low. Even the Turtle Flambeau Flowage is lower than usual.


Crappie: Good-Fair – While some anglers on lakes have been reporting nice catches of very shallow cabbage 3-6’, using 1” Berkley Gulp Alive Minnows, that bite will probably peter out with cold. Drowned wood, cribs have been holding Crappies for anglers using medium fatheads.


Northern Pike: Good-Fair – Active with cooler temps. Mepps #4 spinners, spinnerbaits and live chubs or suckers on jigs. Keep eye on bays with green weeds of 6-10’


Yellow Perch: Good-Fair – Relating to outside weed edges taking medium fats or 1/2 crawlers on slip-float rigs or 1/16 oz weedless jigs.


Smallmouth Bass: Good-Fair – Gravel humps of 18-30’. Ned rigs, drop-shot rigs with 3” Gulp Minnows producing some decent catches.


Bluegill and Largemouth – No report


With turn-over approaching, anglers should not be afraid to continue fishing here in the Northwoods. All lakes don’t turn at the same time and there are always lakes that don’t (too shallow - less than 24’ or Flowages with moving water that won’t stratify) or haven’t (large lakes take longer).


It’s definitely sucker time for you Musky anglers. Action typically best when water is in 50’s to low 60’s so take advantage.

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