After a week of scorching temps we finally got a cool down, and boy did it feel good… Bev and Otis Cobb from Menomonee Falls, WI returned on Friday, and we had one heck of a morning catching walleyes in the Hayward Lakes area up to 25″ in 5′ – 7′ weeds. I don’t ever remember having a shallow weed bite like this last into August, but I’ll take it! Leeches and minnows on jigs and slip bobbers all produced, and we even had a bonus 20″ smallie landed by Otis to add to the catch. Bev landed the big walleye of the morning however, and we had very comfortable conditions with water temps cooling back to the mid 70’s. With a walleye dinner in the bag, we switched lakes in the afternoon and found more eyeballs up to 23″ in 25′ of water bouncing Jigging Raps off the bottom. The bite slowed by mid afternoon, and we spent the last part of our day catching big smallies up to 20″ over rocks in 15′ – 20′ of water on minnows and leeches. The Cobbs put some tremendous fish in the net throughout the day, and I always look forward to having them in the boat. Congratulations on some tremendous fish Bev and Otis. Can’t wait until next year!!!
Saturday was another glorious day to be on the water with comfortable temps and light winds. Tracy Engstrand and his wife Joan from New Brighton, MN spent a memorable day with me on Chequamegon Bay a couple of falls ago when they braved miserable weather to put some big fish in the boat. The weather was a bit different for this trip… Tracy brought along his grandchildren Kallie and Evan Johnson from Almena, WI, and we were instantly into fish when Kallie put one in the net before I could even get a second rod ready. That trend continued throughout the morning as Tracy’s crew caught a bunch of nice walleyes up to 20″ on minnows and leeches in 5′ – 7′ weeds. We had a couple of big bonus fish as well that included a 19″ smallie landed by Tracy and a magnum 21″ smallie landed by Kallie. We switched lakes in the afternoon and targeted smallies. The bite was a bit slower, but we caught several fish up to 17″ over 15′ – 20′ rocks before quitting time. Water temps held around 76 throughout the day, and conditions were about as perfect as they could be. Job well done gang, and enjoy the rest of your summer. You’ve brought em up right Tracy!
George Hollow from Elmhust, IL returned on Monday and brought along his son Dan and grandson Jeremy (12 yrs. old) from Huntley, IL. It’s always good to see George, and it was an honor to have his family in the boat. We spent our first morning in the Hayward area fishing walleyes, and the shallow weed bite continued. Jeremy put one in the net on his first cast, and it was a steady bite throughout the morning. The Hollow boys landed some nice eyes up to 18″ along with a few bonus pike and smallmouth on leeches and minnows in 5′ – 7′ of water. We switched lakes and focused on smallies in the afternoon. The PM shift was all about Jeremy, and he put on one heck of a show catching fish at every stop. We’d catch one or two at every spot, and then it was time to move. Fish up to 18″ were holding in anywhere from 12′ – 20′ of water in rocks, and we used minnows and leeches. Smallmouth are definitely scattered right now, and a variety of locations and presentations will work as long as you don’t get stuck doing one thing too long. Water temps were in the high 70’s with sunny skies and comfortable conditions. Great job today Jeremy. You definitely taught the big guys a lesson!
We were back in the Hayward area on Tuesday with the Hollow gang, and it was strictly a smallmouth bass day. We started off hot putting a bunch of fish up to 17″ in the net on minnows as we fished weed edges in 12′ – 20′ of water with hot temps and a stiff south wind. Every fish the boys reeled in had a big dude following it to the net, but the big dudes didn’t want to participate. Our action slowed around late morning, and we decided to switch lakes in the afternoon. The P.M. bite was tough sledding as we bounced from spot to spot catching only a few fish and missing a few. I think they were all on the same page… Not hungry! Dan landed a really nice 19″ smallie, but that was as good as it would get. Jeremy did one heck of a job hanging with it again however, and every fish we put in the net was well earned. Water temps were in the high 70’s by the end of the day, and some cloud cover in the afternoon saved us from roasting. One more day with the Hollows… We’ll see what kind of trouble we can get into tomorrow!
Jeremy had crappies on his mind for the final day of their trip, and we were back in the Hayward area on Wednesday with the Hollow gang. Storms were looming, and I was hoping we could squeeze in at least half a day. We found crappies instantly, and it didn’t take Jeremy long to figure out the suspended bite as we used jigs and plastics in 15′ – 22′ of water. Water temps were in the high 70’s, and the Hollows landed a bunch of fish up to 10″ at our first stop. Just as we were getting warmed up the skies darkened and it was time to go. Quickly! We made it to shore just in the nick of time, and barely missed getting pummeled. That was close! It was a fast end to a great trip with some really good guys. We’ll get that musky next time Jeremy. You did a great job this week, and I’m proud of you. Good luck in Lacrosse this season. No goals allowed buddy!!!