Fishing with the Guides by George Langley. Week of 10/11 to 10/18.
It's getting cooler now after that warm spell, and that is good news for the fishing, especially the musky fishing. What a year it has been for the fishing, with warm spells and cold spells and most of all , wind. Water levels remain high on all lakes and the river. Weeds are down or getting there. Some lakes are still in the throes of turnover but will clean up quickly as the temps go down. As of Saturday, the median temperature on the water was 54 degrees. It is beautiful out there beyond words, but sadly the colors will be gone soon. We fully expect some serious cold weather within the next several weeks, and especially the musky anglers will welcome it.
Walleye fishing has been very good, with our guides reporting great numbers on the Chain. There is a good walleye bite in the fall – just as good as the musky bite but lesser known. Jigs and minnows are the best bait right now, and the secret in jigging is to get that bait near the bottom. All the lakes on the Eagle River Chain are producing well in or near the holes. On those few lakes without distinct holes, just fish the deepest part.
On the larger deeper clear lakes, there is some pretty good action right now, also. Again, jigs and minnows are the best bait to use. We have had some reports of guys getting some decent fish on crankbaits also. Fish these lakes deeper also.
Bass fishing is highlighted right now by smallies, and they too are deeper. The best action is in 20 – 30' with plastics. Jigs with minnows will also produce in this deeper water. The crayfish are gone by now, so the smallies move to feeding mostly on minnows. A few largemouth are being caught in the weeds, but few anglers are targeting them.
Northerns are hitting well mostly in the weeds. Flashy baits like Mepps Spinners or Johnson Silver Minnows are working well. Look for the deeper green weeds to hold the most fish.
This is the time for great musky fishing, and it will only improve as the water temperatures drop on all lakes. Musky anglers wait all year for this to happen, and they will persevere right through to the ice up on our lakes. This will produce the best sucker fishing of the year also. The biggest problem so far has been the wind, but we hope we'll get some days without a lot of wind. The best baits are jerk baits and twitch baits over the weeds and on the deeper weed edges. Out over deeper water, try some diving crank baits or plastics. Big baits and slow retrieves will work best.
Panfish action is very good for both perch and crappies. You will find crappie on the Chain mixed right in with the walleyes in deeper water. Small plastics or fathead minnows are best for these fish. Perch are basically moving to deeper water but tend to hold longer in the deeper weeds. We see a good number or perch anglers in the fall. Few people are bluegill fishing as they seem to be waiting to get on the ice for them.
It's beautiful out there – get out before it turns brown.
Good luck and good fishin!
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