Masen Miller from Bloomer, WI missed out on his annual spring trip this year, but his dad Jeff made sure we got one in the books before time ran out. It was good to see my old friend, and boy did he put some impressive fish in the boat on Sunday. We’ve been stuck in a bit of a tough weather pattern with high skies and very little wind. Don’t get me wrong… The weather has been fabulous, just not exactly what we need to get late summer inland fish in a feeding mood. In times like this, you have to constantly keep moving to put fish in the boat. Generally, you’ll only catch one or two on a spot before they scatter. Masen’s first fish of the day proved to be THE fish of the day! He did a super job landing a fat 40″ pike that looked like it had swallowed a basketball, and it stands as one of the largest inland pike ever landed in my boat. This has definitely been a year for the books! That fish came out of 28′ of water on a lindy rig and minnow combination. After some photos and release of his trophy, we turned our attention to smallies. It was tough sledding, but we managed to boat some nice fish including a 20″ fatty landed by Masen. We caught these fish on rock humps in 15′ – 22′ of water using slip bobbers rigged with crawlers and minnows. Water temps were nipping 80 degrees by the end of the day, and every fish we netted was well earned. A pit stop for lunch at Angler’s Haven topped off a successful trip. Congratulations to Masen on some awesome fish, and good luck on the football field this fall my friend. Thanks as well Jeff for more great memories. We’ve sure had some!!!
Tuesday morning was spent with Bill Adams from Trempeleau, WI along with his son Troy and 11 yr. old grandson Jude from Hanover, MN. We were on a fish catching mission, and had hot action right from the start. An east wind had kicked up to start the morning, and at this point I would take any wind I could get… It definitely put the fish in a cooperative mood as we caught several smallmouth up to 17″ on slip bobbers rigged with crawlers in 17′ of water. Bobbers were disappearing and the boys were busy. Just what we like! As we moved to our second spot, the wind laid flat, and our hot bite disappeared. Imagine that… As we hopped from spot to spot, the the action was predictably slow catching one here and one there. A light breeze eventually kicked up again, and I decided to check out some deep weeds in 18′ of water. We found some more active fish, and by the end of our trip Jude and the gang had caught 5 different species including smallmouth, largemouth, walleye, bluegill, and rock bass. Jude calls them shortmouth and longmouth bass, and I think I like his version better…. Shortmouth and longmouth it is!!! Water temps held pretty steady at 75 degrees, and the Adams crew did one heck of a job. Thanks for the great morning Jude. You were awesome!!!
Bill Noreus from Zachary, LA, Tom Kelly from Council Bluffs, IA, and Fred Power from Tampa, FL spend their summers in Duluth and joined me Wednesday morning in my boat chasing walleyes on the St. Louis River. Once again, we started the morning with high skies and flat water with very little action. By mid morning a good NE wind had started and the light switch turned on. The boys had their limit of eaters in relatively short order as we trolled crankbaits in 5′ – 7′ of water. Water temps had cooled from my last outing and ranged from 68 – 70 degrees. We caught several fish in the 17″ – 19″ range as well as a dandy 25″ fish landed by Fred. Once the winds picked up, we had pretty steady action which was encouraging after my last trip to the river. There’s obviously still plenty of fish to be had, and I think the bite is largely dependent on weather conditions at this point. I sure hope I don’t wake up the wind gods with all of this, but a little ripple on the water sure does help in August… Thanks to Bill, Tom, and Fred for a fantastic morning. Great guys and great fishing… Can’t beat it!
I can’t believe our open water season is half over… My girls and I are heading to Minnesota over the next few days for a little scheduled R & R. Yes, I’ll be taking the boat. Did you doubt it??? We’ll keep you posted!