Chequamegon Bay & Hayward, Wisconsin Ice Fishing Report 1-17-14

A little warm up last weekend sure felt good, but we’re quickly back to typical January conditions…  cold, snow, more cold, and more snow.  It hasn’t slowed the fishing however as action remains consistent both inland and on the bay.

IMG_0912 (450 x 600)On Sunday, Josh guided Tanan and Deano from Eau Claire for a “bring your own equipment” trip on Chequamegon Bay.  What a day they had…  Splake up to 18″, lakers up to 20″, a 23″ brown, and a whitefish were caught in a short period of time on Kastmasters tipped with minnow heads in 20′ – 60′ of water.  The gang had to move around a lot to find fish, but once they were located action was fast.  Tanan and Deano reported that they landed 10 more whitefish, a laker, and a coho after Josh had left them.  The bay continues to give up some great mixed bag catches if your willing to put in your time to move around and locate fish.  Don’t sit on one spot if your not getting bit.  Once you locate fish…  Hold on!!!

On Tuesday Josh, Acorn, Aaron Kastern, and Lacey Hill donated a few hours of their time to take 25 Washburn High School students out on Chequamegon Bay to show them the ins and outs of ice fishing.  They caught perch, smelt, and cohos during their outing, and they couldn’t have had better instructors.  Beats sitting in a classroom I’d say!  “Nice job” to the Washburn School District for getting these kids outside in the real world, and thank you to Josh, Acorn, Aaron, and Lacey for volunteering the time to give these kids a “hands on” educational experience.IMG_0914 (600 x 450)

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On Thursday, Tom Bauer and his buddies Dave and Mark from the Twin Cities joined Josh on an inland trip that was all about lots of walleyes and pike.  Big walleyes for that matter…  The pike topped out at 25″, but a 28″ walleye landed by Tom was definitely the highlight of the day.  What a giant fish!  Gotta love big walleyes…  All fish were caught in 15′ to 25′ of water fishing tip-ups with shiners along weedlines.  Congratulations to Tom on a great fish.  He currently has the “Big Walleye” of the winter.  Who’s going to take his title from him?  I can’t wait to see that fish!

Ice conditions on Chequamegon Bay continue to improve north of Houghton Pt. with a solid foot of ice in most areas.  We had some lake effect snow late in the week however, and you should continue to use extreme caution when venturing to new spots.  The ice road to Madeline Island is now open, and there are a few pretty good pressure cracks to deal with.  Washburn and Ashland have a lot of snow on the ice making ATV and truck travel difficult unless you are on one of the few plowed roads.  If fishing out of those areas, snowmobile travel is definitely best.  Inland lakes have plenty of ice, over a foot, and plenty of snow as well.  Unless you have a plowed road, snowmobile and foot travel is advised.  By the way…  this is the Wisconsin DNR Free Ice Fishing Weekend.  You don’t get anything free in this world folks.  If you haven’t bought a license yet, get out there and get after it.  Have a great weekend!

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