Variable conditions seems to be the trend this season. This past weekend we had yet another snow storm which dumped approximately 10-12 inches in the Remer, Longville, Outing, and Walker area. Travel has been best still with sleds or track machines. Colder temps the past few weeks have firmed things up on some bodies of water which were once heavy laden with slush, however there are still several lakes that unfortunately we would not advise to travel on until things improve, and with the “January thaw” approaching that might be a while. If you are planning on traveling to the area, call the area resorts or bait shops to get current conditions prior.
This past weekend was the Winter Inland Trout Opener. Stories of success were across the board. As some people had great success, others struggled. We ourselves definitely had noticed more lookers than takers on the Vexilar, but managed to get a few topside. Fighting the cold front that hit mid Saturday morning, being on the right body of water, and having the right presentation all factored in.
Lake Trout: Lakers are hitting tipped tubes and spoons in 35′-70′ of water. Look to the inside turns, points, and shelves. And the best advice I can give any fisherman targeting trout is STAY MOBILE. Keep moving until you get one on the graph, never spending more than 5-10 minutes in an inactive hole. And not only should you stay on the move, but keep that lure moving consistently, working the entire water column.
Stream Trout: Try searching around 4′-9′ of water on the stocked trout lakes. Small spoons like the Clam Speed Spoon tipped with a Maki Plastic or waxie have produced the best.
Panfish: Hit the shallow weedlines for those big Gills, and drill out over the deep basins in 22′-35′ feet of water to catch the Crappies. Tungsten jigs tipped with waxies have worked well. Again, the key to success is staying mobile.
Walleye: Still can be found on the shoreline points anywhere from 11′-26′ feet of water and on the sunken humps. Jigging using spoons tipped with a minnow head have been best when they have been aggressive. If your noticing them coming in yet seemingly shy of the jig, slow down your movement, and try a simpler presentation. Toss down a set-line with a plain hook tipped with a medium Shiner or small Sucker Minnow.