Chequamegon Bay & Hayward, Wisconsin Fishing Report 7-17-14
On Monday morning, we were greeted with 50 degree air temps, rain, and north winds. I guess I didn’t get the memo that October arrived early! Randy Bina from Rice Lake, WI received a trip with me as a gift from his wife through Relay for Life. I hope she didn’t pay extra for the added weather bonus! Well we put our rain gear to the test, sadly mine failed, and managed to put some fish in the boat as we were peppered throughout the day with wind and rain. Slip bobbers and leeches in 15′ – 18′ of water produced all of our fish as we landed walleyes up to 17″ and largemouth up to 18″. Water temps dropped to 69 degrees by the end of the day. We had one pretty good mid day flurry of action. Otherwise, it was one here and one there. We did spend a little time trying to drag crawler harnesses without success. We did have one good fish hooked for a bit on a harness but couldn’t seal the deal. High winds limited the areas we could fish, so we were pretty limited on what we could do with harnesses. We also missed a few fish on jigs and minnows with quite a few short hits and drops. Thank goodness for slip bobbers! Randy did a great job staying positive and keeping a sense of humor throughout the day, and I couldn’t have asked for better company. Congratulations on some well earned fish Randy, and thank you for supporting such a great cause!
North winds continued to blow on Tuesday, but we were finally on the backside of this nasty weather system. What a relief, and I think the fish agreed. My cousin Mark Evans from Indianapolis, IN and his good buddy Jerremy Neibert from Morgantown, IN joined me along with Mark’s uncle Jim (my dad) for a day of smallmouth fishing on Chequamegon Bay. The fish made it apparent early on that the mood had changed as Jeremy landed our first fish before everyone could get their lines in the water. This was more like it! We landed many nice fish throughout the day up to 21″ on plastic worms and minnows in 4′ – 10′ of water. Water temps warmed from 65 – 69 degrees throughout the day as summer decided to return. By afternoon we had fabulous conditions as winds died down and started to turn from the south. Mark gave us one heck of a show late in the day as he battled with a monster pike that smashed a swimbait. It was quite a tussle that unfortunately didn’t end well for us. As I explained to cousin Mark… It wasn’t that big, but quite possibly the lake record! No worries Mark, I’ll just have to continue working for a living!!! Thanks to Mark, Jerremy, and dad for a really fun day with lots of laughs. You guys did an awesome job, and I enjoyed every minute it. Mark, I’d say you did the Evans clan from Indy proud. Way to go brother!!!
Wednesday was perfect in every way. In fact, it was magic! Amy Magnor from Madison, WI reunited with her old friend Ed Armijo from Gallup, NM after 22 years apart and decided to surprise Ed with a smallmouth trip to Chequamegon Bay. Mother nature and the fish all read the script, and we had a day that was nothing short of spectacular. The fish were snapping right from the start as we caught them on plastic worms and minnows throughout the day in anywhere from 5′ – 15′ of water. Many fish have made the move to off shore structures now, and you can literally find them anywhere throughout the bay. The largest fish of the day was a 21.5″ tank landed by Amy that stands as her largest fish ever caught. She also landed two tagged fish, which even added to the experience. Ed also landed his personal best 20″ smallie, as we caught lots of fish in the 18″ – 20″ range. Water temps ranged from 62 – 70 degrees as we covered quite a bit of water. As these two caught fish after fish, I remember thinking that this couldn’t get any better. Wrong!!! Late in the afternoon they perfectly executed a double on 19″ and 20″ smallies. Awesome! Well, we certainly weren’t going to top that, so we ended the day with a tour of the Apostle Islands. Calm seas, sunny skies, and warm temperatures along with amazing fishing and really cool folks made for an incredibly enjoyable day that was a pleasure to be a part of. I can’t thank Ed and Amy enough for sharing that experience with me. Simply put, you guys rock!!!
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