Fished the Minocqua Chain off and on during the September 19 through 23 period. Wasn't really able to spend a lot of time on the water as we worked on enlarging an existing deck much of the time However, we did get out early on two mornings and twice late in the day. Fished three of the five lakes on the chain, but none of them proved productive. Fished mostly off humps and weed edges in 8 to 15 feet of water. Fished mainly with live bait, but also with jigs and small plastics. This was honestly the worst period of fishing that I have experienced in years. A party of 4 individuals staying at the same resort gave up on the chain and began hauling their boats to other nearby lakes, including Big Arb, Willow Flowage, Madeline, and others. They reported basically lousy fishing wherever they went. I presume the unseasonable weather, and accompanying high pressure were the main factors, and probably drove the fish deep. We looked deep, but couldn't find enough fish in numbers to warrant fishing there. Anyone have similar experience, or are we just off base in terms of our fishing know how????
Forecasting ice on April 3rd would be impossible, but I tell you a bit of history that might make your dreams of ice fishing good.
Average ice out for our area is April 15th + or - 4 or 5 days. Earliest iceout was 4 or 5 years ago where during a three year span one year it went out April1, then there was a cold year where it was iced up to almost the open water opener, then the year after that it went out like March 25th = or - 3 or 4 days. The 4/1 open water event was the earliest even the old timers had seen, the the 3/25 event set the record again.
So you should/could have ice on April 3rd, but what condition it is in, well that is another story...
MOON PHASE (16%)
51° - 55° F
Ice conditions continue to deteriorate but the bluegill bite has been strong. A buddy of mine and his grandson managed this catch over the weekend. Best to check with Kurt's Island Sports Shop in town or J&J's in Lake Tomahawk for the latest ice conditions. Good luck!
MOON PHASE (41%)
36° - 40° F