Finally, a reprieve from the sub-zero cold of the past few weeks. Wind let up over the weekend and the thermometer finally read into upper teens and low 20’s. Anglers got out and enjoyed some more comfortable time on the ice and reports improved.
Northern Pike: Fair-Very Good – As the weekend hit (1/28 – 1/30) Pike went on the prowl and flags started poppin! Tip-ups and Jaw Jackers baited with golden shiners, river shiners and suckers took a lot of abuse as the warm spell seemed to be a dinner bell to Pike. Lots of fish in the mid 20” to low 30” range reported.
Yellow Perch: Fair-Very Good – Flats just outside heavy weeds with some scattered vegetation in 7–11’ of water is a good place to find lots of “action” Perch right now. Unfortunately, a lot of “sorting” needs to be done to “weed” out some keepers. Better to target deeper mud if a meal is your plan. Work Pinhead, Hali or Pimples tipped with wigglers or red spikes. Tip-downs with small rosies help 12-16” off bottom in 18-28’ also working.
Crappie: Fair-Good – Best over deep basins. Anglers finding suspended schools 4-15’ off the bottom in 18-40’ of water. Tip-downs action good when wind and temps allow.
Largemouth Bass: Fair-Good – Liking the warm up, Bass actively taking medium shiners on tip-ups.
Bluegill: Fair-Good – Getting more attention this weekend. Weed Gills require sorting through to get eaters. Waxies and mousees best. Look outside coontail edges of 12-16’ to find nicer Gills suspended 2-4’ off bottom taking tungsten jigs tipped with waxies
Walleye: Poor – A few anglers catching Walleye after dark, but as far as catching where you can keep (NOT the Lake Tomahawk/Minocqua Chain) Walleye fishing remains slow.
Ice conditions fairly good throughout. Most lakes have an average of 15-18”. There are areas of slush, some as deep as 10” on top of 14-16” of ice, so try to be aware. Watch for slightly darker patches of snow. Despite all the sub-teen temperatures we’ve had, snow drifts have insulated some areas from building more ice and freezing up slush.
Forecast for 1/31 and 2/1 looks good before more cold mid-week. Looks like a warming trend, not much, but back into teens and low 20’s for weekend.