Tuesday, January 21, 2014

January Blues!

It’s beginning to sound like a broken record.
Out off Merrit Street, white bass and perch but it seems to be the only game in town right now. The Gladwater Beach area is still producing white bass and perch on the east shore of Lake Winnebago with crappies mixed in.Walleye fishing remains slow system-wide. Many people are seeing walleyes high in the water column but remain uninterested in any offerings. Lake Poygan has had brief spurts of walleye action in low light and frontal conditions. The south end is extremely slow for some reason this year. Many people I have talked to can only muster a handful of perch per outing. This is the toughest part of the year, but fish certainly eat. Waiting them out and not looking for an active school will limit your success.The feeding window seems to be smaller in January so you need to be on top of the fish when they feed. Underwater cameras become a necessity to eliminate unproductive time on the hard water. The main basin of the lake seems to be the best areas to fish. It’s a comfort zone the fish seem to be looking for, water temperature and food, cause fish to suspend over the mud. The mud is usually considered to be at depths of 15- to 21-feet.
This is a great time of the year to switch up presentations and give the fish something they haven't seen a million times. I love tungsten and plastics this time of year, a little smaller and they fish fast, which gets you back down to the feeding fish. Crappies, whitebass and perch love them and you can change the color of plastic rapidly to help pattern the fish.The ice roads are in great shape with all clubs having their roads out and bridged if necessary. The general consensus is 20- to 22-inches of ice across the entire lake with bad spots in front of the river mouths as usual.The water is super clear, which is setting the stage for a great but short sturgeon spearing season.Remember, buy a road pass, it will help keep those ice roads plowed. Visit us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/Fishwinnebago or on http://www.fishwinnebago.com for more information on Lake Winnebago.

Until next time, good luck and tight lines!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

New Years Day

Despite the cold, ice fishermen are still hitting the Winnebago System looking for walleyes with limited success. 'You should have been here yesterday,' seems to be a reoccurring theme for Lake Poygan as the fishing continues to be hit and miss.

When people are having success, the bite seems to be nice size crappie, whitebass and walleyes ranging from 13- to 18-inches. There are a few hazard areas so stop in at the bait shop on Highway B and ask for a little advice.
A few trucks went in the lake to the west of Nofkes landing a few weeks back. Lake Poygan is not a lake to be making your own tracks on unless you really know the lake. Brutal temps are on the way, so things will really shape up nicely over there.
The snow on the lake is workable for a four wheel drive with many trails packed tight making travel very easyAccess is somewhat limited on Lake Winnebago with most of the lake traffic coming from the east shore. Brothertown has a 3 mile tree line and Pipe has a tree line out 5 miles. There have been a few holes remaining off Oshkosh and Quinney that are not freezing up at the same pace. Ducks and geese held up ice formation in two small areas in late December.
The Otter Street Fishing Club will not put bridges on the lake until there is a minimum of 12 inches of ice. It is part of the club's by-laws and the rule is in place to keep everyone safe. Paynes Point on the North end has a bridge and is reporting 12- to 14-inches of ice.

Wendt’s on the Lake has reported 10 inches of ice in areas as well which has delayed the bridging of their cracks. With the arctic blast on the way I’m sure things will change by the upcoming weekend. As always, just because there is a tree line in place, it doesn’t mean you shouldn't stop and ask about the ice. It is never safe or recommended to jump or cross an expansion crack without a bridge.

If you do encounter a bridge, enter it one vehicle at a time and keep a slow and steady pace until you cross. Please remember to buy a road pass from your local fishing club. Plow trucks are very expensive to run and this helps offset the cost of their operations.As for fishing on Lake Winnebago, white bass seems to be the hot ticket with some perch and tiny walleyes scattered in the mix. Fishermen have reported that the bluegill/perch bite has slowed dramatically in the bays with most action occurring with frontal weather changes and low light conditions.
Visit http://www.fishwinnebago.com for all your latest fishing information and navigation tips.

Until next time, tight lines!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Pipe: 12-28- 2013,

Pipe: 12-28- 2013,

After much deliberation on where to fish last night, I decided to give the south end of the lake a try and ventured out of Pipe on the East shore.  I entered the lake right at Jim and Linda’s and took the tree line out three miles and a little south where I gave my new Jiffy Pro 4 lite a work out.  I knocked out a good dozen holes and proceeded to drop the flasher down each hole, looking for signs of life. I knew there were some big schools of white bass in the area from a late fall scouting trip so I was hoping it wouldn't take long to narrow things down.  On my fifth hole, I caught a glimpse of some marks and decided to drop my favorite Rapala down the hole.  I had immediate chasers so I set up shop. It took about 6 hours to fill a 5 gallon bucket with white bass so all in all, it wasn't a bad day. Also caught 7-8 little walleyes that where riding high in the water column. Most of the high fish were running at the 10 foot mark in 16 foot of water. Travel was great with a four wheel drive and after today’s sun, the snow pack was knocked down a bit. I had to cross a bridge at about the one  mile mark and then picked my way through some ice chunks to get to the main basin.  When I crossed the bridge on the way back home, it had a lot of water standing around, so look for things to change in the morning. We are going to have some windy conditions tonight and some bitter cold on the way so hopefully by next weekend the west shore will be able to be bridged as well. Till next time ……… ~Tight Lines~

Thursday, December 26, 2013

East Side/ Calumetville Report 12- 26-13

 Today we fished between  Calumetville and Brothertown  and  bounced around in and between the 5 groups or so that where spread  from 1 and 4 miles off shore.  I checked ice at all the stops and 14.5 inches was max and 13.5 was the least amount of ice I measured . Travel is getting interesting with some major drifts in most areas we traveled.  No roads are plowed  so finding a path to get around was fairly important.  . At Gladwater Beach, the ice  is very  rough near the 1 mile mark with big ice shards sticking up in the air. Many are covered by snow, waiting to take a muffler or oil pan out so use extreme caution when traveling out there. We caught fish at every stop, White bass ,perch and walleyes.  Each school of fish seemed to be reacting a little bit different to the baits. Jigging Raps were the bait of choice fished with nothing on it or a waxie hung off the treble hook. I will be out all weekend so I will keep you up dated!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Christmas Report

Lake Winnebago bays are still kickin out panfish while the south end seems to be null and void of fish and fisherman. On a brief tour of the south end yesterday only a handful on shacks were visible on the ice. “Just a few marks and not much on the camera and I drilled 50 holes”, one fisherman noted. I’m holding out on hope as I’ve seen this in the past. Guys will slip in there after a while and just smoke um!
The bays from the wayside on Hwy 45 all the way to Blackwolf have been consistent for gills and perch action. Many I have talked with have mentioned it has slowed with all the lake traffic. The East side is reporting spotty activity for white bass and perch. There is a wide open hole off of Brothertown that is stacked with ducks and that is keeping the ice from forming. Extreme caution is advised on the east shore with reports of ice variations from 6 to 12 inches.
This will be the first time in many years that we will be navigating the lake with vehicles by Christmas. Parents, please have a 5 minute conversation on ice safety with your kids. Just because we have a foot of ice doesn't mean the safety rules go out the window. Travel in pairs, tell someone where you’re going and have a throwable and rope in the vehicle are just a few rules that will save a life. The ice is never 100 % safe and a little caution and knowledge goes a long way.

Better yet, Take your Kids Fishing.

Best Fishes on a safe and enjoyable Holiday Season!