Memorial Day weekend already?… That was fast. We finally got some sunshine! Paul Spaude (Colgate, WI) and his son Nick (Franklin, WI) returned to fish Chequamegon Bay on Thursday for a two day trip out of The River Rock Inn. Northeast winds and cool weather continued, but the clouds finally left. It sure felt good to see the sun! We started out hot at our first stop landing several smallies on plastics, jerk baits, and minnows in 3' – 6' of water. After that initial flurry, the bite got tough. We worked hard for every fish throughout the rest of the day and moved frequently to get bit. The only pattern we could dial in was finding warmer water, and whenever we did a few fish would hit the net. By the end of the day, Paul and Nick had landed a bunch of good Bay Footballs up to 20" including a fun double as time was winding down. Water temps ranged from 52 – 57 degrees, and there was no doubt active fish were looking for a little heat. We ended up putting a respectable day together, but it certainly wasn't easy. The Spaudes did well considering the conditions. Now we just need a little warm weather to get those fish fired up. Maybe tomorrow?…
When I met Paul and Nick at the landing on Friday, we had a completely different set of circumstances from the day before. Winds were light out of the south with warm temps and cloudy skies. Not surprisingly, the bite was hot right from the start. Paul and Nick started the day with a nice double, and the next couple of hours were filled with fast action and lots of fish in the net. It was the exact reason people come to fish Chequamegon Bay. Big pre spawn smallies were climbing all over plastics and jerk baits in 5' – 6' of water, and we had a hard time keeping three lines in the water without getting bit. Water temps were pretty consistent at 56 degrees. Unpredictably, the wind switched back to the NE around mid morning. Gotta love Lake Superior. Temperatures dropped significantly and the bite got a bit funky for a bit. We did a bit of lure experimenting and downsized our plastics. Bingo! The Spaudes finished up the day in good form, and Paul even landed a thick 30" pike as a bonus. Good couple of days with some really good guys. Same place, same time next year fellas!
A day without long underwear! After three straight weeks of wearing it, temperatures were more like normal for this time of year on Saturday. Sure felt good. A familiar gang was back for their spring trip, and we spent our day in the Hayward Lakes area chasing smallmouth. Our crew included Mike Lee and his son Aaron (Lakeville, MN), Dick Lee (Owatanna, MN) along with brothers Dane and Evan Loberg (Eagan, MN). The cool weather we've had has really set back our smallmouth spawn, and fish are just starting to set up on beds. Aaron and Evan had the morning shift with me, and we targeted spawning as well as pre spawn fish in 4' – 8' of water. The boys did well landing good numbers up to 19" on jigs and plastics. They were a bit stubborn though, and each bite took a lot of patience. Water temps were 54 degrees to start the day. In the afternoon, Dick and his grandson Dane were in my boat. Conditions deteriorated a bit with clouds and a steady wind moving in, and we started out slow. After sticking with it however, my crew ended up putting a very respectable PM shift together. It included a couple of 20' fish landed by Dane along with a super double landed by grandpa and grandson at the end of the day. It was a perfect way to wrap up another memorable trip with these guys. We always seem to catch a bunch of fish, and it's always a great time. Water temps at the end of the day hit 58 degrees, and the bite should just keep getting better if Mother Nature cooperates. As always, job well done by the Lee and Loberg men. Those fish never saw it coming!
More rain. Really…??? I'm not telling folks in northern Wisconsin anything they don't already know, but this has been one cold and wet spring. Terry Peterson and I teamed up on Sunday to guide an awesome crew from Fort Worth, TX. Larry Epperson and his wife Ann along with their friends Steve and Lynee Knapp joined us for the first of a two day trip in the Hayward Lakes area, and we began the day waiting out some passing storms. When all was clear it was time to get after some eyeballs! Larry and Ann were in my boat, and the bite was a bit tough. However, we were able to scratch out some nice walleyes up to 20" on jigs and minnows in 5' – 6' of water and weeds. We moved around a lot to locate feeding fish, and found them in small pockets. The unstable weather we've had over the past couple of weeks has definitely taken its toll, and you need to stay on the move if fiish aren't cooperating. Water temps hit 60 degrees. The Eppersons did well figuring out the weed bite, and got the job done. After a pit stop at Angler's Haven Resort, we switched lakes to target crappies in the afternoon. A fast start quickly ended, and we had to move around a bit to find more active fish in 5' – 6' of water. Ann offered moral support as Larry and I bounced around a bit before finding the sweet spot and landing a bunch of decent fish up to 11" at the end of the day. Terry's crew also did well, and we hit the boat landing just in time for more rain. Just what we needed! Fun day with a fun bunch, and I'm looking forward to day #2!
We hope you all had a fantastic Memorial Day Weekend. Please remember all of those who have given their lives for our great country along with those who have served past and present. We get to do this, because of them. Thank you!