Holy Hot!!! Northern, WI is in the grips of one of the most extreme heat waves in recent memory, and it’s made each day on the water an adventure. Mike Lee from Lakevill, MN returned for trip #2 of the year along with his good buddy Mike Yager from Woodbury, MN. We fished the Hayward area on Saturday in steamy conditions along with little to no wind as water temps spiked to 80 degrees by late afternoon. Tough conditions for sure, but the Mike & Mike show weren’t deterred and fished like champs throughout the day. It was a “one fish per spot” kind of day, and we weren’t able to dial in any sort of pattern as we exhausted a variety of live bait techniques along with drop shotting plastics. We caught fish with every technique but never more than a couple at a time, and big fish were hard to come by as we worked weed lines in 15′ – 20′ and deep rocks from 15′ – 40′. Our totals at the end of the day included a 19″ smallmouth, 18″ largemouth, and 17″ walleye. Mike & Mike couldn’t have had a better attitude about the whole situation, and did one heck of a job putting some fish in the net on a day that Mike Yager pointed out was “excellent for water skiing”. Thanks for the laughs fellas. I’ll bring the skis next time!!!
The heat wave continued on Sunday and Monday, and Josh Teigen and I teamed up on Chequamegon Bay to guide Corbin Shouse from Houston, TX along with his friends Ken Wittekiend (Burnet, TX), Rick Felder (Charlotte, NC), & Mike Efting (Frisco, TX). Corbin had scheduled a two day trip for he and his buddies, and they certainly brought some southern heat along with them. Corbin and Ken were in the boat with me for day #1 of the trip, and we had a productive morning as steamy conditions continued. We did have a decent wind however which makes all of the difference during mid summer hot stretches. We drifted live bait rigs in 15′ – 30′ of water and caught some really nice smallmouth up to 21″. Action was steady until noon, but the water laid flat once again in the afternoon as we spot hopped to catch one fish at each stop with water temps hitting 74 degrees. Kind of funny how that scenario translates to both inland waters and the big lake… No worries though. This is a really fun group to fish with, and we had caught more than enough fish to call it a good day. The catch of the affternoon came in Josh’s boat when Rick put a fat 38″ pike in the net. Way to go Rick!!!
Hot temps and flat water were once again predicted for Monday, and I was hopeful that we’d at least be able to repeat our performance from the previous day. Corbin and Rick had me laughing all morning as we had a very welcomed surprise. An unpredicted wind picked up and was just enough to put the fish in a feeding mood. We had a really good morning dragging live bait rigs in 12′ – 20′ of water. Corbin even landed our biggest smallie of the 2015 season to date. He battled a monster 22 1/4″ x 16″ beast into the net that will be tough to beat this year. I haven’t laid eyes on a 22″ since 2013, and I couldn’t have thought of a better guy to catch it. Even Rick was happy for him. Sort of… The pm shift included Corbin and Mike. Again, an unexpected afternoon breeze kicked in, and we got into a school of active fish as Mike and Corbin put some good smallies up to 20″ in the boat on minnows and plastics over 12′ – 15′ of water. Water temps hit 74 degrees again, and it was a great ending to a couple of fun days with some really fun guys. Congratulations on your trophy Corbin, and we’re looking forward to seeing you again in September. Safe travels back home fellas, and thanks to Josh Teigen as well for yet another job well done. As always!!!
Tuesday was scheduled to be back on Chequamegon Bay with Bill Noreus (Zachary, LA), Tom Kelly (Council Bluffs, IA), & Fred Power (Tampa, FL). An approaching storm system and high winds forced us to cancel. I enjoyed fishing with this crew last year and was sorry we couldn’t make it happen. We’ll get em next year boys!!! Stay cool out there everyone!!!