Sunday, May 22, 2011

Lake Winnebago Comes Alive

After nearly 5 months under a frozen sheet of ice Lake Winnebago is back in full swing. The pelicans,ducks and  gulls are cruising above. The reefs are dotted with boats and did I mention the lake flies? Yes, the fly hatch has a firm grasp on the lake homes and its residents.Yesterday I could hear a low pitched buzzing noise as I put my boat in at the launch.The hatch might last into next week but with some wind they are far less bothersome . Oh yeah, walleyes are back too.
Yesterday we focused our efforts on small reefs on the the west shore. 1/16 ounce jigs cast over the tops of reefs put  a limit of walleyes in the boat in short order. I did notice that with all the flies  hatching the walleyes seemed to prefer the smaller leeches and very small  jigs. We bought jumbos and mediums and the mediums out fished the larger leeches 2-1. The thing about a fly hatch you have to keep in mind, walleyes have food in front of them 24/7 so the profile of your bait needs to be downsized a bit. Most all the fish had lake flies in their stomachs and the walleyes just needs to swim around with their mouth open to eat. They are not chasing the flies down so its an easy meal.


The other thing I will mention here is water clarity.  The water is stained so the tops of the reefs will hold fish but as the water clears they will vacate to shadier areas.  The way I tell if its too clear is  I look at my anchor rope. If  I can see down the rope into the water more than three or four feet I move deeper. Not all reefs hold fish at this time of year so remember to keep moving  until you find the fish. Now get out and enjoy Wisconsin’s FINtastic Outdoors!

8 comments:

  1. John nice walleye you lucky devils! Eating well tonight. My favorite freshwater fish for eats!

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  2. Great job, John! I agree with Mark. You should be eating well for a meal or two. Thanks for sharing.

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  3. Mark and Mel,
    Can you just smell one of those summer time fish fries with coleslaw and fries and a good German beer?

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  4. Oh to be out on a boat jigging for Walleye...then the fish fry afterwards.

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  5. Oh man can I also get a little potato salad with that summer time fish fry too? :) Just made my stomach rumble. Thanks for the tips and glad to hear the lakes are coming alive. Nice fish and pics too.

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  6. Gotta love Winnie! Haven't fished there in a few years...but looking at those walleye, makes me want to plan a trip soon! good eats.

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  7. One thing you don't see on the water here in Maine..pelicans.

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