Fishing continues to improve on most waterways of the Northland. Currently we are seeing water temperatures anywhere from mid 60s to mid 70s. Which is much better than what we were dealing with just a few weeks ago. We have also started to notice some lakes are in the preliminary stages of what us fishermen call “turn-over”. This is where the cold water on the surface will start to mix into the deeper water columns. What has been exceptionally nice lately is we are starting to get away from common summer bite windows. Further meaning, you really don’t have to be the first one on the water to catch fish from here on out. Especially on those overcast days where the sun is being contained behind cloud cover. With that said, I still prefer to target mornings and later afternoons for peak fishing times. Any avid angler would agree that historically fishing is always best when the sun is coming up or going down. In other news, we are a very short time away from having hunters infiltrate the woods and waters. If you have been to a local sporting goods store lately and checked out the hunting aisles, you will know what we mean! Okay, lets check into this weeks fishing reports:
Lake Superior angling is starting to see a drop off of fishing pressure. At most public boat launches, you will now not have to endure long waits and bad parking spots. This time of year, for many Gitch anglers is known as “last call”. We have been hearing of good success for the boats getting out. Basic tactics and locations continue to be consistent with what has been producing the last few weeks. Best colors have been purples, blues and greens. Towing lead line, dipseys or riggers is still a thing, although some are once again getting fish in the upper halves of the water column. Lake Trout continue to dominate the catch, and most guys are getting good numbers when giving it full day efforts in and around Duluth/Superior. Same holds true for around the islands and into Chequamegon Bay. In the Ashland area, we are just starting to see an uptick of good Smally and Walleye action. Look for these bites to improve. In our local streams, anglers are reporting fresh Lake fish starting to return. Usually by end of September and into October, is the peak run of Steelhead, a few Brown Trout and Salmon. The streams will certainly start to more and more busy with each passing week until the end of the stream seasons.
On the St. Louis River Estuary we are still having some conflicts with shallow water and running around our vessels. If you have a deep drafting boat and a longer shaft motor, be especially cautious! Its best to take it slow. As far as fishing goes, Walleyes and good-sized Perch are starting to make a comeback and have been going well this last week. Slow drifting crappie minnows on long shanked hooks behind a couple of split shots have been taking some fish. Water clarity is not the best in some areas, more the reason to slow down you’re fishing. Smallmouth Bass have been on a terror around the channel edges where they are feasting on river shiners. Muskie anglers are reporting some sightings. Best tactic for a beefy Muskie or Pike is to speed troll long stick baits or spinners down weed edges. We are still waiting on a good crappie bite to form up, but jigging deep cuts with simple tough tubes or jig and minnows will be key.
Inland fishing has been good with continuing panfish bites located around dock areas, beaches and cabbage. Its hard not to use a small crappie minnow, worm chunk or small leech under a float. When you locate fish, try not to spook them out of the area! Pike and Bass have been in similar areas, but for the most part have been hanging deeper. Work the weed edges in the 10-20 feet. If your looking for a trophy, try even deeper. Walleyes have started to school up on basins of around 15 feet of water. On the no-wind/glass surface times of the day, it can be exceptionally fun to catch them using ice fishing tactics. I prefer to haul along my Vexilar and fish them using simple jig and minnow cadences. Fishing has been good and will only get better and better, buckle up!
All the best hooksets, Capt. Jarrid
Tight Lines & GoOd FiShN,