Fishing with the Guides by George Langley. Week of 1/22 1/29.
A continuation of the absolutely weird winter weather has brought slush back into the picture locally. This warm front did drop the snow level on the lakes significantly, and when we get some colder weather it should be much easier to get around on those lakes. This is usually the coldest part of the winter, so it is really tough to figure out what we will get from here on out. A huge drop in the snow levels and icy trails have stopped the cross country skiing and snow shoeing activities, but we hope the predicted snow mid-week will bring some relief!
We're in the middle of that January lull in fishing in general, with just OK reports from throughout the area for all fishing. We always thought it was because of the cold weather at this time of year, but this year has proved us wrong.
Walleye fishing is OK for numbers, but we're not getting reports of much in the way of size from anglers at this point. Some decent fish are being caught on the Eagle River Chain in the evenings in and around the deeper areas, but as we said not much in the way of bigger fish. Medium shiners seem to be the best bait under tipups, with most set in the 8 – 10' range on the edges of weed beds and the holes. The larger lakes seem to be producing a little better, with some daytime jigging going on in deeper water also. These anglers are using mid sized vertical jigs tipped with parts of shiners or rosie reds. Then, in the evenings, anglers move in shallower on the weed edges with tipups.
Northern action is good, with decent numbers being caught on all lakes. Look for the deepest and greenest weeds you can find and set tipups with large shiners for best results. It's the time of year to do double duty – set two tipups with these shiners and fish with your jigging rods for panfish in the same areas.
Panfish have been doing pretty well, with bluegills in the weeds providing good action now. We're not getting reports of great size, but good numbers of these fish. Perch also are hitting in deeper weeds and over mud flats, with wigglers now providing good action for these fish. Fish with the wigglers right near the bottom. Crappie action is improving now, with anglers now finding some in deeper water on the Chain. You have to fish for these guys searching vertically also, as on some days they will be way off the bottom. Having good electronics helps greatly for these fish. Set tipdowns with minnows and jigging rods with small vertical jigs and waxies.
Take advantage of the warmer weather to get outside and do some fishing.
Good luck and good fishin'!
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