Happy Halloween everyone! It’s hard to believe this will be our last open water fishing report for 2015. Where does it go?… The last week of the season was spent with friends and family, and it’s always great to catch up with some good folks I haven’t seen in awhile. Long time friends Mark Hayman from Siren, WI and Steve Naglosky from Shell Lake, WI were with me on Sunday. Mark and Steve had a little revenge to take out on the muskies after our trip last season, and it didn’t take long for Steve to get us on the right side of the board when he put a nice high 30’s fish in the net on a sucker. We spent the morning working shorelines in 7′ – 10′ of water, and we were able to move one fish on a crankbait with a lazy follow. Water temps were 50 – 52 degrees on a warm and sunny day with very little wind. It was noticeable that the mood of the fish had changed from recent trips. The sucker grabs we had were not as serious, and we experienced a few drops throughout the day. Mark started our afternoon right however when he landed a nice mid 30’s musky as we started to work the main lake basin in 20′ – 30′ of water. Shortly after Steve had on a really good looking low 40’s fish that escaped just before it hit the net. The one that got away… Our day ended with another grab and drop on a sucker, but the boys had already accomplished what they set out to do. You won’t keep these guys down two years in a row! Thanks for a super day Mark and Steve. It’s always a pleasure and always a blast!
Jordan Gensmer from Angler’s Haven celebrated the end of his resort season by jumping in the boat with me on Monday. Jordan and I have had a pike curse on our recent trips, and we were way overdue to put a musky in the boat. We had a bit of a slow start on a cold and rainy day. Our first opportunity came late in the morning, and Jordan took full advantage putting a high 30’s fish in the net that ate a sucker. Not long after we had our second musky when Jordan landed another high 30’s fish on a sucker. Take that pike! After warming up a bit in the truck for lunch things got going pretty quickly in the afternoon when Jordan moved a decent fish on a crankbait, but it didn’t make any attempt to eat. Later in the afternoon fish # 3 chomped a sucker, and Jordan had his first three musky day. Way to go partner! All of our fish were caught along weed edges in 7′ – 10′ of water, and we did try working the deeper basin for a bit without any action. Water temps were 50 degrees, and a northeast wind put a pretty good chill in the air. We had to be extremely patient with every take on the suckers as the fish were once again in a goofy mood and not really serious about eating. Getting the angle right on the hookset was important, and you can’t mess around getting them to the net. I had just the man for the job with me, and those fish didn’t know what hit them! If you’re in the Hayward area this fall and winter make sure you stop in at Angler’s Haven for some great food and great company. They also have a rental unit available for ice fishermen and snowmobilers looking for a winter getaway. Thanks for a great day Jordan, and congratulations on your muskies. Now go shoot me an elk!!!
Thursday afternoon was spent with my father Jim. Rain and cold northeast winds didn’t stop us from making an attempt at finding some late season crappies. Luck was on our side, and we found a good school at our first stop. We never had to move the boat and caught plenty of really nice fish up to 12″ on plastics in 25′ of water. Dad used a slip bobber while I jigged a tight line, and both presentations seemed to produce equally. We saw our first 40 degree water of the season as temps ranged from 49 – 52 degrees. It’s amazing that it has taken this long to get water temps below 50 degrees, but the weather we had in August and September had a lot to do with it. Dad and I had a great time pounding some late season slabs and brought home one more bunch of fillets for mom. Thanks for another good trip dad, and enjoy those crappies. I’m looking forward to joining you on the water in a warmer climate a few months down the road. Heck… Why not sooner than that???
Our last day of the 2015 season was spent with Scott Roppe from Birchwood, WI and his new fishing partner Kala Mueller from Spooner, WI. Scott is no stranger to our boat, but this was Kala’s first experience. I can tell you that she’s welcome back any time… We spent the morning chasing crappies and found a bunch of slabs up to 13″ in 25′ of water using plastics. Again, slip bobbers and tight lines both produced. After a fun morning of catching lots of fish we decided to turn our attention to muskies in the afternoon. Well I’d say Kala must be a good luck charm as we ended up having one heck of a day pulling suckers and casting crankbaits along weedlines in 7′ – 10′ with 47 – 49 degree water temps. Kala landed her first two muskies ever on suckers, and Scott added a third to finish the trifecta. Kala’s fish were both in the high 30’s and Scott’s was a 40″ fish. Scott also moved a fish on a crankbait, and we had one grab and drop at the end of the day. Kala was outstanding, and did a perfect job following directions on her first musky adventure. As usual, Scott made it happen as well. I couldn’t have scripted a better ending to our season, and I couldn’t have asked for two better people to share it with. Thanks for an incredible day Scott and Kala, and congratulations on some super fish. You guys are awesome.
Thanks to all of you for following our reports this season. Your support is greatly appreciated, and I’m always humbled by the feedback I get. Good customers make good guides! Please enjoy the rest of your fall, and stay tuned for our ice fishing reports to come soon. Be safe and take care everyone!!!