2003 Fishing Trips

By Robert Piorkowski - March 1, 2003
The 2003 fishing season has already started, yet I’m way behind on my planning for the year. This past January we made the trek up to Lake Poygan for the Lake-Link ice fishing outing. This was my second time attending the event, and each year its gets better and better. Make plans now to attend next year. As far as the rest of 2003 is concerned, there are many places that need to be fished, and we are just the guys to wet a line.

For March, this is the time to plan a steelhead trip on the St Joseph River in Michigan. Initially, we wanted to spend time with a guide to learn techniques, tackle and terrain, I would highly recommend Four Seasons Sportfishing Charters. With information gained by that trip, we now plan to venture back and try it on our own. By boat or by wading you can fish this river for 50 miles from Lake Michigan to the west and past South Bend, IN to the east. With its tremendous steelhead population, (and walleye in summer), and proximity to populated areas, the St Joseph River is a tremendous resource that needs more attention.

As May approaches, the walleyes and white bass pull us like a magnet up to the Fox River/Winnebago system in Winneconne, Wisconsin. Depending on the weather, the white bass will be running with the catch of an occasional walleye. (The main walleye season is earlier in March/April). Trolling river rigs, with minnows or flies or casting jig/minnows will full your live well with bass. Last year we found a few walleye hanging around grassy flats. These were caught using the same rigs the white bass were attacking. Dress for success because weather can be finicky.

Summer time brings an annual trip to the Arkansas Ozarks for Bass fishing on Bull Shoals Lake, and flyfishing for trout on the famous White River. Bull Shoals Lake boasts over 1000 miles of shoreline with great bass, panfish, catfish and walleye populations. With that much acreage for fishing, there are plenty of guides to put you on fish and places to stay. (http://www.bullshoals.com). The White River is a tailwater fishery created by the construction of Bull Shoals Dam.

What I haven't discussed were day trips on local waters. These are more termed, "grab-gear-and-go" outings, and don't necessarily need guides or lodging. We'll be hitting plenty of local waters this year. To help with your trip planning this year, check out the guide section on Lake-Link. You'll be able to read information about conditions for lakes/rivers, find lodging and a guide. It’s early in the season, so pick up the phone, write a letter or click a link to plan your next fishing trip. The more information you can find, will only help ensure your trip is enjoyable.

Author Robert Piorkowski
Robert Piorkowski
Rob is a Field Editor for Midwest Outdoors Magazine, Featured Columnist for BigfishTackle.com, Contributing Writer for Illinois Outdoors and works as a Environmental Project Manager near Chicago, Il. When not casting for bass out of his boat, you'll find him wading local rivers searching for bass with a flyrod. If you have any questions or comments regarding this article, contact Rob at rob_fishon@hotmail.com