Minocqua Area Fishing Report - 2/28/23
Just one weekend left to the inland gamefish season here in the Northwoods. At the stroke of midnight, Sunday, March 5th, it’s time to pack up the tip-ups for the season (unless you’re headed to the U.P.)
Mixed reports from this past week. Some anglers did well, while others struggled. Few very good reports with the exception of Largemouth Bass, so let’s start there.
Largemouth Bass: Very Good – Always seems to be a correlation between warm (20 degrees +) weather and ice fishing Largemouth. Using medium shiners under tip-ups or jigging Shad Raps or Rippin Raps seemed to conjure up the most fish. Lots of action from 12-15” fish, but for the second week in a row, a 19 ½” LMB was caught and released!
Northern Pike: Good – Bite started late mornings, but improved throughout the days. Big, active shiners and suckers seemed to interest Pike the most. A few anglers using frozen smelt also reported success. Definitely feeding up, as many Pike caught showed signs of full gullets as egg production in full swing!
Yellow Perch: Good-Fair - Another species packing on the “ounces” as they are early spawners also and building up weight for ice out. Still two types of bites. Outside weed edges in 8-10” using minnow or fry shaped jigs, such as Z-Vibers or K-Rips tipped with waxies. Over mud flats of 18-26’, fast dropping Nils, Kastmasters, Bull Spoons and Pinheads tipped with wigglers or red spikes. Start with an aggressive jigging motion to draw them in, then watch on your flasher as Perch rise 6-8’ to meet your jig on the way down.
Bluegill: Good-Fair – Best along weeds of 7-10’. Small tungsten jigs in sizes 2.5mm – 3mm tipped with waxies, spikes or dark plastics. A few reports of deeper Gills in 14-18’ also, same presentation along coontail edges.
Walleye: Fair-Good – Best on 3” suckers along 12-14’ weed edges at dusk or 18-25’ humps depending on what the lake has to offer. Anglers reporting some success jigging Slab Raps and the new Jigging Shadow Rap.
Crappie: Fair – Bite seemed off. Basin fish scattered, tough to pinpoint. Weed fish seemed negatively affected by high pressure, so fish tighter to the bottom on days like these.
Despite Thursday’s snow (2/23), travel on the lakes remained good as snow was light and fluffy. What things will be like by the end of the week remains to be seen as snow on 2/27 and 3/1 with highs in the low 30’s could bring weight. Temps look good for the final weekend of gamefish with highs forecasted for mid to upper 30’s and some clouds to offset the coming full moon.
Upcoming Ice Fishing Tournaments
Mar 4th – KISS Highschool Ice Fishing Tournament