Well its fall, and I have some good news.
Water temps are peaking out below 60 degrees in the afternoons. Okauchee, Oconomowoc and Lac Labelle all clocked in the high 50's late today, which means now is the time to hit the water for some musky fishing. The bite has been a bit slow, but certainly steady. Two large fish were caught on Okauchee in the last week, and we've had numerous reports of high 30's and low 40's fish coming to the boat.
Some advice: The lack of rain this season allowed the weeds to grow deeper than is typical for our area. Likewise, a fair number of fish are being caught in deeper water than is typical for this time of year. Trolling has been producing, especially in areas with baitfish in 18-25 feet of water. Good use of your electronics is essential right now.
Look for the bite to move shallower and into the available green weeds, but don't over look rock bars adjacent to mid depth weeds, especially on warmer sunny afternoons, as fish will move up to warm up and digest food.
Fishing with suckers is never a bad idea this time of year. We have suckers and custom quick strike rigs in stock right now.
Smallmouth fishing will pick up on the area lakes, and now is the time to chase down a trophy sized fish with live bait. Slip-sinker rigs with walleye suckers or large shiners drifted or trolled very slowly around the deep edges of structure can surprise you. If you find fish, you'll very likely be over a good school of them. fish that area hard, and pay attention to your electronics. Subtle bottom changes will concentrate fish.
Walleye fishing has been slow, but is starting to pick up in the Dells and along the Jefferson Dam to Blackhawk Island stretch of the Rock River. Water is seasonably low this time of year, so watch your prop, but look for fish in the current, in the shallow water near deeper holes. They will likely be actively feeding, rather than holding in the deep water. Jig and Minnow, Lindy rigs or jig and twister are good producers.
The end of summer clearance sale continues. 30% off all tackle in the shop. Now's a great time to get that musky lure you've been eying up all season.
Last thing: Changes are afoot. I will continue to publish fishing reports, but look for them on the guide blog starting December 1st.