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from some of the BEST PLACES TO FISH !

24th May, 2011: FISHING REPORT:  Wausau, Central Wisconsin Area
by Joel DeBoer of Wisconsin Angling Adventures

Dare I say it – spring has truly arrived?! The fish appear to be thinking so at least, as smallmouth bass action continues to be solid in the greater Wausau area with large numbers of fish transitioning into spawning mode. Key on shallower hard-bottomed areas and explore them with in-line spinners until fish holding sections of shoreline are located. Fan casting rockier hard-bottomed shorelines on the Wisconsin River system with inline spinners such as a #3 copper or gold bladed Mepps Aglia will locate areas of active fish. Once concentrations of fish are found, soft plastics are the ‘go-to’ presentation; 4” Mister Twister FAT tubes in firetiger, grasshopper, and watermelon crawfish patterns have been productive. Depending on water depth and current conditions, rig the tubes with a Mustad KVD Grip-Pin hook and 1/16 – ¼ oz weight and fish on a tough but limber line such as 8# or even 10# Sufix Elite.

Good walleye action has occurred from jigging or working live bait rigs either under a slip bobber or walking sinker rig. The size structure is excellent in our area, with numbers of fish being caught on a regular basis. Deeper water areas, especially those containing structure, have been holding more fish as walleyes continue working into their summer haunts. Look for deeper wood or hard bottomed humps and spines to hold numbers of fish as well as stretches of river channel containing sharp irregular break lines, especially those containing submerged wood. Jigs in the 1/8 and ¼ size tipped with a large fathead will elicit strikes from these sought after predators. Fan casting or trolling crankbaits such as Rapala Shad Raps, Minnow Raps, and Tail Dancers is producing not only good catches of walleyes, but bonus smallmouth bass and pike as well.

Northern pike are aggressively attacking lures fished over and through the newly emerging weeds finally being found in many of the backwaters and bays of the Wausau area. Water temperatures are such that many of trophy female specimens are still shallow and active before making their hiatus for deeper water as surface temperatures rise to summer conditions. Sunny days, seemingly at a premium so far this spring, have been producing the best action, with the bite at its peak during mid-day hours. In-line spinners like the Mepps Comet Mino, Aglia, and Mepps Marabou and spoons such as the Mepps Syclops are all taking their fair share of fish right now, and should be worked over and through the newly emerging weed beds. In respect to color, bright patterns featuring oranges, reds, and chartreuses are producing the most action.

The bulk of the crappies have made their way towards spawning grounds with good numbers of fish already being caught shallow. With the continued warmer weather, the crappies will continue to slide shallow, frequenting downed trees, stumps, and log jams as they look to spawn. A finesse slip-bobber and tiny jig rigged with Berkley Crappie Nibbles or a 1 1/2” Atomic Tube will produce fish in the shallows. A slip bobber and minnow presentation is almost always effective for fish receiving heavy fishing pressure. Don’t be afraid to use walleye fatheads for bait; with the darker water, Wisconsin River crappies will often prefer the larger presentation to conventional crappie minnows. Some absolute slabs are there for the catching!

Less than 2 weeks away, musky anglers should begin preparing and planning for the 2011 opener. The North-Central Wisconsin area is one of the finest in the state for producing musky action from opening weekend through November. Each year we see some very impressive muskies caught and released in our area, even during the first few weeks of the season. Unlike many deeper, clearer lakes to the North, the Wisconsin River system in and around the Wausau area will have temperatures more conducive to the king of freshwater actively chasing down a variety of presentations. The Wisconsin River system has produced more 40-pound class fish in the past decade than any other system in Wisconsin; several of those trophies have come from the Wausau area. Reviewing our log books from last year, and judging from the size and numbers of fish, ALL caught and released - it looks to be a great season again in 2011! I’ll see you on the water…

For more information


Joel DeBoer
Wisconsin Angling Adventures
Tel: +1 715-297-7573
[email protected]
"Fishing's our business... and business is good!"




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