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WI River fishing report 05/08/07

Fishing in and around the Great Lakes region including all tributaries and adjoining states.

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WI River fishing report 05/08/07

Postby JDeBoer » Tue May 08, 2007 11:04 pm

Opening weekend was a windy affair here in North-Central Wisconsin. For those anglers willing to tolerate the breezy conditions, a variety of species continue to be active. Smallmouth bass action continues to be very good as large numbers of fish are in spawning mode. Fish into the low 20” range have already been caught and released on the Wisconsin River this year. Fan casting rockier hard-bottomed shorelines with small spinner baits such as Mini Slopmasters in the 1/4oz. size or inline spinners such as a #2 or #3 Mepps Aglia will locate areas of active fish. Once concentrations of fish are found, soft plastics have been the ‘go-to’ presentation; 3-3 ½” tubes from Mr. Twister, Berkley, and Roberts Outdoors have been the most productive. Depending on water depth and current conditions, rig the tubes with an off-set VMC hook and 1/16 – ¼ oz weight and fish on a lighter, more limber line such as 6# or 8# Trilene XL.

The best walleye action has occurred from jigging or working live bait rigs either under a slip bobber or walking sinker rig. The size structure is excellent, with numbers of fish into the upper teens being caught on a regular basis. Deeper water areas, especially those containing structure, have been holding more fish as walleyes continue working into their summer haunts. Look for deeper wood or hard bottomed humps and spines to hold numbers of fish. Jigs in the 1/8 and ¼ size tipped with a large fathead will elicit strikes from these sought after predators. Fan casting crankbaits such as Flicker Shads and Wally Divers along deeper current breaks is producing walleyes as well as bonus smallies and pike.

Anglers looking to target the resident channel catfish population have also been scoring on some fine action. Often overlooked, the Wausau area is home to some impressive catfish specimens that will truly test your equipment. While fresh cut bait works well, many anglers are beginning to appreciate the convenience and effectiveness of commercially prepared products such as the Doc Chumley line from Frabill. Whether fresh or prepared, rig the bait using an egg sinker slip-rig and circle hook. It’s best to use a sturdy rod holder as aggressive channel cats will pull a rod into the water if given the opportunity.

Crappies continue to make their way towards spawning ground with some fish already being caught shallow. A finesse slip-bobber and tiny jig rigged with Crappie Nibbles or 1” Power Tube will produce fish in the shallows. For those anglers looking to score on fish holding in the staging areas, a slip bobber and minnow presentation has been most effective. Don’t be afraid to use walleye fatheads for bait; with the darker water, Wisconsin River crappies will often prefer the larger presentation to conventional crappie minnows. Some absolute slabs are there for the catching!

Anglers looking to tangle with Rainbow, Brook, or Brown trout in one of the many area streams should have a selection of inline spinners available. Casting spinners is an excellent way to locate and catch the most active trout in a section; the Aglia Long is an excellent choice as its willow leaf blade allows an angler to effectively fish it in current. To catch more pressured or less active fish, a Berkley 3” Power Trout Worm or Power Eggs either below a tiny float or on a simple split shot rig will tempt even the moodiest of fish into biting.

Although roughly 3 weeks away, musky angler should begin preparing and planning for the 2007 opener, Saturday May 26th. The North-Central Wisconsin area is one of the finest in the state for producing musky action from opening weekend throughout the season. Each year we see some very impressive muskies caught and released in our area during the first few weeks of the season. The Wisconsin River system has produced more 40 pound class fish in the past decade than any other system in Wisconsin; several of those trophies have come from the Wausau area! It looks to be a great season again in 2007.
Wisconsin Angling Adventures Guide Service
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Cabin Boy
Cabin Boy
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Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007 9:37 pm
Location: North-Central WI

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