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Midwest Fishing Report: Lakes/areas

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Salmon coming in, despite the winds and waves on Lake Michigan, lead this areas and lakes section of the Midwest Fishing Report.

This is the extended online version of the MFR, which appears on the Sun-Times outdoors page on Wednesdays. Well, it is the lakes and areas section.

If you have suggestions, post in the comments section or let me know at


In Chicago, Mike Repa at Park Bait reported at least 11 caught Tuesday morning, mostly near the mouth of Montrose Harbor on spoons and crankbaits. Steve Palmisano at Henry's said there were also a smattering caught at the mouth of Burnham Harbor and a 14-pounder, caught at 39th Street on Friday, leads the Richard J. Daley Sportfishing Derby. At Waukegan, Capt. Augie Ralph at the Salmon Stop said kings were "pretty consistent'' on Cleos and Krocodiles; the biggest one caught from shore and weighed was just under 26 pounds. Mik-Lurch reported kings starting to go into Salt and Trail creeks, before the blow they were stacked up in front of the Ditch and by the Hole-in-the-Wall. There are divergent reports from Kenosha, Wis. Tyler Harmon Facebooked that small kings have entered the St. Joseph River in Michigan.


Fall patterns should start to set up this week. I expect vastly different fishing by the weekend and I bet some guys will be back to targeting crappie by then.


For guide Mike Norton's report, go to, then click on fishing, then lake report.


From licensed guide and trapper Phil Schweik and guide Glenn Moberg of Hooksetters Guide Service:

(Head): Walleye on fire, with bass, bluegills and musky hitting strong, and
the bear hunting season has begun in and amidst the lakes and the Wisconsin
River of Wisconsin's Marathon and Lincoln Counties (near Mosinee and

Walleye in the central Wisconsin area have been putting on a fabulous bite
on the Wisconsin River and Lake Dubay; producing outstanding catches.
Limits of nice sized eaters from 15 to 20 inches have been common with a lot
of slot sized fish from 20 to 28 inches mixed in the batch. Work strong
current and neck down areas with Rapala Shad Raps and jig and minnow
combinations right on the bottom. Depth has really not been an issue as
fish are being caught anywhere from 2 to 8 feet of water.

Bass activity in the central Wisconsin area has been getting better and
better, and with the water temperatures starting to cool down the fish are
becoming more aggressive. Top water action has been very good with Chug
Bugs and Hula Poppers along with good action on spinner baits in yellow or
black. Target rocky shorelines and areas with wood or a combination of both
for the most consistent action.

Real sleeper has been the bluegill bite in the central Wisconsin area. If
anybody wants to get a kid introduced to fishing, now is the time to do it!
Anglers are catching bluegills almost as fast as they can toss their bait
into the water. Small jigs (1/32nd of an ounce) hooked up with a chunk of
crawler or a warm is all you need for bait. Work weed beds and downed
timber in 2 to 5 feet of water for these feisty bull gills. Don't be
surprised if you hook into a nice bass or perch while doing this as these
are good areas for them to be hanging out in as well.

Musky anglers are getting that 'fall itch" in the Central Wisconsin area.
Cooler temperatures in the air and with the trees just starting to turn mean
great musky action. Guides are boating fish on every outing, with one of
Hooksetter's guides putting four legal muskies in the boat in less than
three hours a few days ago (all muskies are released!). Large jerkbaits and
big bladed bucktails have been the best producers, but if you are looking
for a real giant trying running large topwater baits like the Weagle or the
big Hawg Wobbler. Big muskies, especially at this time of the year just
can't resist these large baits running slowly across the surface. For
action, start targeting areas with reduced current or areas with large
boulders and structure. Now is also a good time to start working deeper
water s the fish will start to migrate towards traditional fall/winter
staging grounds.

Bear hunting season in the central Wisconsin area has started. The
successful hunter will be prepared, with baited stands ready at the selected
hunting location. Watch for upcoming information and photos from this
season's hunt as we head into the woods in search of a big bruin.


Triangle reported excellent catfish on crawlers or roaches directly on the bottom; bluegill are good very shallow; muskie are best on bucktails or jerkbaits on Marie or Bluff; white bass are in 8 feet, Marie or Bluff are best; walleye are fair but improving, look around current areas, bridges or main lake points.

For more reports, see

More Chain info at


BRAIDWOOD/MAZONIA: Mik-Lurch reported some good bluegill at Mazonia. Close is 7 p.m. Final day of fishing will be Oct. 6, but Monster Lake at Mazonia South remains open year round.

HEIDECKE:Surprisingly, a reader sent a walleye catch worthy of FOTW, caught on Friday. Final day of fishing is Oct. 4.

LaSALLE:Through Sept. 30, the lake is open Wednesday through Sunday. Continue to hear multiple good reports of blues and receive some photos.


EMIQUON: Emiquon Preserve near Lewistown is open to fishing. Interested parties may request a permit (remember you need the new one for 2011) and list of rules between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. at the Dickson Mounds Museum in Lewistown. There is no fee. No gas powered motors are permitted, and bank fishing is not allowed. For more, call (309) 547-2730.

EVERGREEN: Any updated fishing report will be posted here.


For Ohio DNR report go to and or call (888) HOOKFISH.


For shoreline salmon, see top.

CHICAGO:: Before the blow, Capt. Bill Kelly of Leprechaun Charters reported great kings and some coho in 70-90 feet north and south of the Car Ferry, mostly kings and some lakers in 60-90 south of R4; bigger coho and rainbows in 140 east of the R4.

WAUKEGAN: Ralph also reported a few perch in 40 feet off Great Lakes, when weather allows.

NORTH POINT: Before the blow, fishing was outstanding. When boaters get out again, Capt. Bob Poteshman of Confusion Charters expects kings to be pushed out to the hill with other fish out in 180 and deeper.

CHICAGO NOTE: The fisherman's parking pass--$10 for two months and available at Henry's Sports & Bait--is needed to park south of the main building at Northerly Island.

CHICAGO'S FISHERMAN'S PARKING: The $10 parking passes for the small fishermen's lots at Burnham and DuSable harbors and now the south side at Northerly Island are available at Henry's.

RICHARD J. DALEY SPORTFISHING DERBY: Runs through Sept. 30. The species for September are carp and kings. Go to or call (312) 225-8538.


Click here for D&S Bait.


EAGLE RIVER: Creative Brilliance sent this report for the Chamber of Commerce:

(Head): Excellent panfish action, with a good bite for musky, walleye,
northern and smallmouth bass in the Eagle River, Wisconsin area.

Water temps are in the high 60s to low 70s in the Eagle River area.

Panfish (crappies, bluegills and perch) are on a tear in the Eagle River
area, particularly on the Eagle River Chain of 28 lakes (largest freshwater
chain of lakes in the world). Fish 6 feet of water or less in and around
weeds. Use a chunk of crawler or crappie minnow under a slip bobber. The
crappies and gills be a foot or so off the bottom with the perch tight to
bottom. All day bite with fun galore.

Musky in the Eagle River area are providing good action. Fish 5 feet of
water or less in and around weeds, using a bass style spinner bait,
bucktail, glide bait or crank bait. Use a small to medium size lure.
Medium retrieve is working best, and don't forget to always do a "figure 8"
at the end of your retrieve. Muskies are following lures to the boat. All
day bite with peaks in early morning and around sunset.

Walleyes are locating in 5 feet of water or less in and around weeds in the
Eagle River area. Use a 1/16th ounce jig tipped with a fathead minnow. All
day bite, with peaks in the early morning and late afternoon into early
evening. Good action.

Northern in the Eagle River area are in 7 feet of water or less in and
around weeds. Use a Husky Jerk in a minnow or walleye pattern, a bass style
spinner bait, or a #4 Mepps. Good, all day action.

Smallmouth bass are providing a good bite on the deeper, clearer lakes in
the Eagle River area. Fish break edges in 10-20 feet of water over
hardbottom areas, particularly with boulders, rocks and gravel. Use a 1/8th
ounce jib with a fathead or leech.

(Report for the Eagle River Chamber of Commerce based on Creative Brilliance
interviews with Eagle River guides "Muskie Matt" of Wild Eagle Lodge,
"Ranger Rick" Krueger of Guide's Choice Pro Shop, and Mat Hegy).
Contact info for Eagle River:
* Eagle River Chamber of Commerce; 800-359-6315; 715-479-6400; e-mail:; web:
* "Muskie Matt", 715-891-5980; e-mail:
* Mat Hegy, 715-571-7544, e-mail:
* Guide's Choice Pro Shop, guide/owner "Ranger Rick" Krueger 715-477-2248
* George Langley, Eagle River Fishing Guides Association, 715-479-8804.

MINOCQUA: Guide Kurt Justice of Kurt's Island Sport Shop sent this:

Water temps fell into the solid 60's this weekend. Changes are becoming more pronounced. Weeds dying back, fewer fish in shallows. Not strong bites over the weekend, but fall patterns sure to start developing.

Smallmouth Bass: Good to Very good. Finesse is the key. Drop shotting small plastics, Lindy Rigging leeches and crawlers. Deep gravel humps, some as deep as 38', key to catching smallies right now.

Largemouth Bass: Good. Creature baits in heavy weeds (live weeds). Some action on shallow cranks, spinnerbaits over weed tops.

Musky: Good. Action best on top-water tail baits, shallow jointed cranks (Smity Shallow Diver) and large fluted bucktails with water temps dropping into 60's, sucker action should start picking up.

Pike: Good. Liking cool down. Jigging chubs, suckers. Spoons, spinnerbaits, #4 Mepps worked along still green deep weed edges.

Bluegill: Fair. Best over deep water. Waxies, small leeches, worms as well as small plastics and Gulp Maggots. Suspended fish half way down in 14-24'.

Perch: Fair. 8-12' weeds. 1/2 crawlers, medium fatheads.

Crappie: Fair: Deep. Work base of weeds in 20-28'.

Walleyes: Poor-Fair. Can only improve from here. Deep bite very spotty, watch electronics, work base of gravel humps where it meets mud.

With fall patterns still not locked in, fishing has been unstable. Nice steady cool down should bode well for September bites.


For shoreline and stream salmon, see top. Mik-Lurch reported also reported some steelhead in the streams. Remember Willow Slough is closed to boat traffic through the early waterfowl seasons.


Lakeside reported another good weekend for muskies, up to 42 inches; some good catfish and bass moved to deeper breaks. Water is cooling quickly toward the ideal fall range.

For reports, click here.


The fresh report from the Wisconsin DNR wasn't posted yet, but click here to see it.



Fishing Headquarters



MICHIGAN DNR REPORT,1607,7-153-10364-34956--,00.html






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This page contains a single entry by Dale Bowman published on September 7, 2011 11:05 AM.

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