Hopefully, everyone had a great Halloween weekend filled with fun. As we make more headway into Fall, we are continuing to split our time with fishing AND hunting outings. Now that it is November, it can sure be really hard to decide what activity to do, most avid outdoorsmen and woman will agree. Deer are now into the annual mating season, grouse and woodcock are fluid in lots of area woodlands, waterfowl continue to be fair-game and fishing is on fire in a lot of area waters. One thing is for sure, it is finally starting to actually get cold. Jackets are finally mandatory when heading out into the field. Daylight hours are very short now, and as a reminder this next weekend is “daylight savings”. I suppose we have about 6 weeks until we are into tip-toeing onto first ice. Until then, lots of good open water fishing opportunities still exist, let’s talk about it:
Lake Superior is harboring very few anglers. Most of the reports are coming from the Smallmouth factory of Chequamegon Bay. Reports are not steady, but the anglers that area getting out are having success slow drifting live sucker minnows in the bay near Ashland. A good set-up includes a simple circle hook, dragged behind a bullet sinker and split-shot about 3-5 feet with a bead on each side of the sinker. Also remember to hook the sucker minnow through the upper lip (not both lips). This will ensure more of a lively minnow. As always, the case with live bait, don’t be surprised to hook up with a few Pike and the occasional Walleye utilizing this technique. Other popular fishing related to Lake Superior is no doubt the very late season tributary fishing (check regulations where legal). Still pretty busy on the weekends, but definitely slowing down. Lots of anglers are still finding some steelhead and brown trout utilizing center-pin and spawn set-ups. Hard-baits are also getting some fish to go as well. Remember to space yourself out and work the slack water. Although, you can get a good tug often when casting into the fast current.
St. Louis River is still putting out some good cold water Walleye action in many stretches. Regular 1/8 or 1/4 oz jig and minnow still continues to be a good tactic to get some fish. Continue to concentrate efforts on the areas that were productive in the Spring and you will find some success. If your boat is put away, you should “need not worry” as there are plenty of productive shoreline spots throughout the estuary. Not one is more dominant than the other this time of year. If you have the time, it can pay off to chuck out a oversized sucker minnow under a Muskie bobber in hopes of connecting with a big fish (either Pike or Muskie).
Inland waters have hosted some great fishing. Typical this time of year and very similar to the river, fishing springtime honey holes will be a best bet. Most inland fish are schooled up and putting on a pretty good feeding session if you can time it right. It’s been mostly a 9-11 or 2-4 O’ Clock bite, but as any angler will tell you, “you can’t catch them on the couch”. Live minnows continue to really be the way to go, but you can get diverse with a few other productive tactics. Jig rapping is one of the most fun ways to catch a fish. Target mi-lake humps. Also fan casting stick baits like rumble bugs toward shorelines will produce some fun bites. As always, trust your electronics.
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