Yes… The fishing might be a bit better right now if it was cooler out and our water temps would drop, but you won’t hear me complain about fishing in 70 degrees at the end of September. Winter will be here soon enough and we’ve been catching plenty of fish despite the unseasonably warm weather. Tuesday, day #2 of my trip with George Pearson and Keith Green from Bainbridge, IN, was spent on Chequamegon Bay. We had spectacular weather, and really good fishing that started with a morning run on a pile of big smallmouth that included a 21″ monster landed by George. We used minnows in 12′ – 15′ of water, and had a good chop with a steady wind throughout most of the day. After a mid day lull, they lit up again in the afternoon, and we were busy until quitting time with lots of action and plenty of big fish. It was the best numbers day we’ve had on the bay in awhile, and it’s the best afternoon bite I’ve seen in over a month. I guess the fish just figured, “Heck with it. We’ve got to eat!” Water temps on the bay ranged from 59 – 62 degrees. One interesting thing to note was that the p.m. frenzy occurred as the moon was rising around mid afternoon. I’m sure there’s something to it… Great weather, great fishing, and great guys. That was one heck of a day!
George and Keith had one day left in their trip and wanted to give the walleyes one more shot. With overcast skies and a front moving through, I figured the bite would get going so we went back to the Hayward area on Wednesday. Well, it looked good on paper… No, they weren’t biting. At all… We spent most of the morning without a sniff after trying several different spots and marking fish in every one. I’ve seen it before and know better than to spin my wheels. We knew the smallies were biting, and it wasn’t hard to convince the guys that we had to make a switch. Away we went, and it didn’t take long to get the rods bending as we used minnows in anywhere from 7′ – 25′ of water. We had constant action throughout the afternoon, and there were very few moments when one if not both of the guys were into a fish with lots of 18″ – 20″ fish put in the net. A fat 21″ walleye landed by Keith was a nice bonus to wrap up the trip, and it was a super way to end a great three day stretch with these guys. Inland water temps continued to hold around 66 – 67 degrees. One thing is for sure… Our smallmouth aren’t looking forward to George and Keith returning any time soon. Nice job fellas, and safe travels home. That was a blast!
Cloudy skies and a little light rain continued on Thursday, and we worked out of Angler’s Haven as some of my favorite guys from Iowa returned for their fall trip. Jeremiah Andrews from Union, IA was back in my boat, and he brought along his friend Brian Groninga from Geneva, IA. It was good to have Jeremiah back, and Brian was a welcome addition. If you can’t have a good time with this crew, you can’t have a good time… We started out chasing walleyes, and got into a good bite in 30′ – 35′ of water on minnows. Jeremiah and Brian landed some nice fish up to 21″, but the “one here, one there” pattern continued as we had to move around a lot to stay on fish. After you pick one or two out of a school they seem to scatter in a hurry, and you have to keep moving to stay on top of them. We switched to weed edges late in the morning in 15′ – 18′ of water using jigs and minnows and found some really nice smallies up to 18″ as we ended the a.m. shift with a couple of doubles. With a good morning in the books and a couple of Jordan’s Italian Subs in our bellies, we decided to spend our afternoon on crappies and switched lakes. It didn’t take us long to get into some really good fish up to 12″ as we found them suspended over 25′ – 30′ of water using plastics. After a couple of hours we had all of the crappies we needed, and I asked the guys if they were up to checking out another lake. Of course they were! Our third lake produced as well, and we found some nice smallies up to 18″ over deep weeds in 20′ – 30′ of water using minnows. Water temps continued to hold around 66 – 67 degrees. Three different species on three different lakes in one day. That was fun Jeremiah and Brian. Thanks for an awesome day!!!
Dan Uniejewski from Nashville, TN returned on Friday to spend a half day with me fishing a Hayward area lake looking for walleyes. Warm temps continued, but a little fog kept the sun from popping out until late in the morning. We started working deep water and found fish in 32′ – 40′ using minnows. Man are they spooky right now though… They don’t stay in one spot for very long, and you’re lucky to get one out of a school before they move. After Dan landed a nice 20″ fish, we decided to check out the weeds in 15′ – 18′ of water and found them there as well using crawler harnesses. Walleyes on crawler harnesses at the end of September…. That might be a first for me! The crawler bite was slow though, and we switched back to minnows. That didn’t generate any more walleye bites, but it did put some smallmouth up to 18″ in the boat. Dan even insisted that I catch a few, and he was kind enough to net my fish and take my picture. What a treat, and what a great customer! Again, water temps held around 66 – 67 degrees on another very comfortable day to be on the water. It’s always good to have Dan in the boat, and we always seem to figure out a way to put a few fish in the net. Thanks for another good day Dan, and I’ll see you next spring my friend! Get on the water and enjoy this glorious weather everyone. Have a great weekend!!!