Minocqua Area Fishing Report - 4/11/22
Still lots of ice to contend with so far. Mix of rain, sun and some warmth, countered with some cold nights didn’t allow for a great loss of ice, but it’s diminishing!
Bluegill: Good – Weed Gills biting well in 4-8’ of cabbage. Waxies or plastics in red, purple, black and motor oil worked sometimes only a foot or two below the ice best. High fish a sign of low oxygen causing fish to rise higher in water column where parts per million higher making life more active. Anglers plying 14-18’ depths seeking Perch and Crappies finding suspended Gills (mostly 8”+) 6-10’ off bottom. On the windy days a #3 or #4 tungsten needed to buck breeze to keep lines taught, bait down.
Yellow Perch: Good – Best over mud flats 14-18’ using heavy spoons/jigs (Clam Bombs, Pinheads, Venom Inferno Spoons, Tungsten Kastmasters) baited with red spikes or wigglers. Nice average “eaters” of 9-10 ½” but enough “plus” 11’s to make things interesting. Perch filling up for spawn, good bite as they slowly migrate into shallower water for ice out.
Crappie: Good – While some good weed action in 7-10’ slow dropping rockers tipped with white, yellow or pink plastics or waxies, best fish deeper. Working mud flats and above sandgrass in 14-18’, use tip-downs to hold minnows 2-6’ off bottom. Action not as fast as previous week, but large Crappies to 14” being caught. Jigging flashy spoons (Pimples, Vinglas) tipped with waxies also productive.
Questions most asked…
How much ice? On average 24-28”. Top layer (6-8”) punky, rest very solid.
Vehicle travel? ATV and UTV, snowmobile, yes, but be cautious. Top layer can get messy.
Access? Mostly good, but check. Some lakes with steep, black topped launches have lots of water/slush, as much as 14-16” on top of ice, tough to maneuver.
Ice fishing this Easter weekend? Yes, but could be last on many lakes as forecasted rain could eat up shoreline access.
Will the lakes be ice free by opener, May 7th? I sure hope so! Lots of ice to lose (24-28”) in next 26 days.
Forecasted highs in 50’s, yet low in upper teen to low 20’s going to be a see-saw battle to losing ice.
As written earlier, sun, temps, wind and rain, as well as affects of ground warm up, should eat ice from both top and bottom. Cold nights will halt some melt, but overall safe fishing ice will probably last only two more weeks on some of the last accessible, north facing landings, around.