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Minocqua Area Fishing Report - 2/20/23

A great holiday weekend for ice anglers in the Northwoods. Last weeks rain froze up to create good, if not slippery, travel on most all lakes. Some lakes the snow had melted and refroze to a sheet of skateable ice. Cleats were a necessity for getting around. Combining the warm temps (upper 20’s to low 30’s), with a three-day weekend and a New Moon proved a winning combination.

Largemouth Bass: Very Good – Rarely targeted, and not typically as active in winter, but with the stars lining up just right lots of Bass action. Mostly on tip-ups and medium shiners, though jig anglers looking for Gills reported catching lots of “surprises” to 20”!

Yellow Perch: Very Good – Mud basin Perch were found in 25-35’ of water stacking up, feeding on Mayfly larvae (wigglers). Anglers using Pimples, Kastmasters, Halis and Buckshot Rattle spoons tipped with wigglers or spikes. Weed relating Perch taking Z-Vibers and T-Rips tipped with waxies in 6-10’ cabbage.

Crappie: Good – As with Perch, two different locales. Basin schools in 25-40’, roaming the open water taking #3 ultra light Rippin Raps or small Rattlin Kastmasters tipped with spikes. Anglers finding some nice Crappies in 10-12’ narrow leaf cabbage taking small rosies on tip-downs, but holding fairly tight to the bottom.

Walleye: Good – Best bite surprisingly in morning for some (New Moon!?). Mid-morning action on bars and saddles as loose schools roam from deep to humps to feed. Suckers, shiners on tip-ups (smaller better) and jigging spoons working well.

Northern Pike: Good – Had some mixed reports, but overall good action on tip-ups with large shiners.

Bluegill: Good-Fair – More of the action/sorting reports than anyone talking good overall catches.

While ice thickness continues to improve (22-24” avg), truck travel is becoming better across many lakes. Biggest concern is coming snow forecasted for this Wed/Thur – great for bubble heads – not for bucket butts! If right, we are supposed to see 12-14”+ snow. If this happens, ice travel will be relegated to snowmobiles, tracked UTV’s and trucks. Will wait and see!

Also…only two weekends left to the Wisconsin inland lake game fish season here, so try to get out while you can.

Upcoming Ice Fishing Tournaments

Feb 25th – Northwoods Chapter of Muskies Inc. – Kids Ice Fishing Day

Feb 25th – Newbold Fire Department – 2nd Annual

Mar 4th – KISS Highschool Ice Fishing Tournament


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