Thursday, June 13th, 2019
With the recent cooler temps, surface water temperatures on the area lakes were reported to be back in the upper 60’s to around 70.
Bluegills were spawning on most of the area lakes. Pick your favorite lake and go! Please practice selective harvesting during spawning time. Look for them around gravel areas near green weeds as shallow as 2 feet to as deep as 25 feet. Wax worms, giant redworms, leafworms, and panfish leeches were the preferred live baits. Spider Hellgrammites, small fathead minnows, or dilly worms produced larger gills. Bait these on a #8 hook or small jig and suspend under a small slip float for gills in deeper water. A long cast with a Rocket Bobber works best in shallower water. A tandem rig with a Dick Smith Panfish Grub and a bluegill bug or black ant fly worked as well. Bait these with a wax worm or spike for best results. Foam spiders or poppers produced in shallow water areas during calm conditions.
Crappies were in post spawn and fishing was best during early morning or evening hours where they were suspended near weeds or wood in 8 to 15 feet of water. A slip bobber rig with a #6 hook or 1/32 oz jig baited with a small fathead worked best. Casting a 1/32oz jig and plastic combo such as a Cubby Mini Mite, Dick Smith’s Panfish Grub, Gulp 1” minnow, Itty Bitty Swimmers, or Kalin’s Crappie Scrub also produced.
Largemouth bass were in post spawn and were most active near weeds, wood, or piers in 5 to 12 feet of water. Casting wacky worms, Ned Rigs, jig and craw chunk combos, Mepps spinners, Brovarney Swim Baits, and Texas rigged plastic worms have produced. A nightcrawler, leech, medium golden shiner, or small sucker or chub fished on a live bait rig or suspended under a slip bobber worked best for live bait. During early morning and evening hours, casting topwater baits over weed flats have produced explosive strikes. Fishing the slop, with plastic frogs, worked well during the later afternoons and evenings.
Smallmouth bass were also in post spawn and were caught near rocky areas, points, and along breaks. Casting tube jigs, skirted grubs, swim baits, drop shot rigs, and Ned Rigs produced. A leech, jumbo fathead, or small chub fished on a live bait rig or suspended under a slip bobber worked best for live bait.
Walleye anglers did best fishing along weed edges in 12 to 18 feet of water. A weedless jig or slip bobber rig baited with a leech, half a nightcrawler, jumbo fathead, or small chub produced best. Casting or trolling crankbaits, near structure, produced during dark hours.
Northern pike fishing was great along weedlines or drop offs in 12 to 18 feet of water. A medium sucker or large golden shiner baited on a circle hook with a heavy fluorocarbon leader and slip sinker worked best for larger pike. Casting around shallower weed flats using chatterbaits, Mepps spinners, spinner baits, buzz baits, lipless crankbaits or swim baits produced smaller pike.
Musky action has been relatively slow with many anglers reporting many lazy follows.
Catfish have been very active on the Rock River, along with Lakes Beaver Dam, Koshkonong, and Mendota. Stink bait, cut up suckers or chubs, or nightcrawlers has produced best.
Lake Michigan is starting to heat up in Milwaukee, Racine, and Kenosha Harbors. Some real nice Kings have been caught this week. Also, a mixed bag of fish including Coho, Rainbows, and Lakers have been reported. 00 Orange Flashers with Peanut Flies for the Cohos and larger flashers and flies for the Kings.
Please practice Catch and Release for the Future of Fishing.
Becky Smith & Mike Smith