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  • Tuesday, February 13, 2018 3:25 PM
    The fishing has been pretty good, but the continued cold weather has seriously hampered anglers’ efforts to be comfortable out there and has kept the number of fishermen down considerably. 
    But it is expected to warm up this week and we hope that those forecasts for temperatures in the 30s are accurate. It is always nice to see families out on the ice and to see kids getting a chance at tip-ups. 
    Ice conditions are good now, with roads plowed out on many lakes. If you are going to venture your own way, be careful of the ice and snow drifts. These have formed because of the heavy winds of a week ago and
  • Tuesday, February 6, 2018 11:21 AM
    Once again the North Woods received a new snow load on the ice, but this one doesn’t seem to have created a lot of slush. 
    The North has had enough cold weather to freeze a lot of the slush, so it is not too hard to get around out there. Many of the lakes have “snow roads” also, so anglers can drive out with comfort. 
    As we get further into February, the sun will get stronger and the days longer, so we start thinking some of spring. There’s not a lot of time left in the game fishing ice season either, so soon we’ll be talking about that March panfishing.
    Snow cover is great now, so all the winter enthusiasts are
  • Tuesday, January 30, 2018 11:28 AM
    Anglers are once again blessed with that dreaded midwinter condition called lake slush. Most, if not all, lakes have slush at some level due to that heavy snow the North Woods received last week. 
    Warm weather last Friday followed by colder temperatures Sunday and Monday have since firmed up some of the lakes.
    It seems to happen at some point every winter, but it sure makes it tougher to get around on the ice. We would sure recommend some waterproof boots for anyone going out. 
    It is hard to believe that it is the start of
  • Tuesday, January 23, 2018 11:31 AM
    We finally got a good weekend for ice fishing and a lot of you took advantage of the weather to get out there. This is what winter is all about. It was great to see everyone enjoying themselves and great to see people also catching fish.
    In general, the fishing has been pretty good, with everything from walleye to panfish doing well. 
    The North Woods could use some snow for the trails, but we really don’t want a huge snowfall for the ice fishermen because that will mean slush on the ice. Lake conditions have been pretty good so far, with anglers able to get around well. Ice thickness is from 12 to 18 inches.
    There is
  • Tuesday, January 16, 2018 11:10 AM
    Once again, anglers have been confronted by difficult fishing weather as it has been too cold for most anglers to enjoy themselves on the ice. 
    Boy, this has been a difficult winter so far. We’ve got pretty good ice conditions now as the ice is thick enough to drive on pretty much everywhere. Do, however, watch for current areas on the Chain of Lakes.
    Despite the cold weather, there have been the hard-core people out there and they’re doing pretty well. Make sure your auger blades are sharp as the ice is getting thicker by the day.
    With some more snow, we’ve got
  • Warmer daytime temps to boost fishing effort
    Tuesday, January 9, 2018 11:48 AM
    The North Woods is finally getting some decent weather for a few days and this is the chance to get out and enjoy it a little. 
    That prolonged cold front was miserable and way too long. It did, however, build some great ice on the lakes. We’re not seeing cars on many lakes yet, but we are seeing snowmobiles and four-wheelers out there. This means that anglers can get out to anywhere they want on the lakes. 
    By the way, people should get to Eagle River to see the ice castle this year — it is great. 
    There were not a lot of ice anglers out during the cold front and those who caught fish were pretty secretive about where they were fishing. These severe cold fronts change the patterns of the fish and
  • Tuesday, January 2, 2018 11:53 AM
    We haven’t exactly experienced T-shirt weather for the last 10 days or so, but we’d sure appreciate seeing 20 degrees one of these days. 
    At the sport shop the past week, we were shocked at the number of people who went ice fishing during the holidays despite the frigid weather. Thank heaven for shelters! 
    The frigid cold has helped the ice build up during this period, with many lakes now having more than 10 inches of ice. This bodes well for the rest of the season as far as ice fishing goes. The slush on some lakes a couple of weeks ago is mostly frozen now. 
    With only
  • Tuesday, December 26, 2017 12:22 PM
    With this cold weather, we have much better ice thickness for both ice anglers and snowmobilers here for the New Year’s weekend.
    It seems we always get cold weather in January, so perhaps we’re getting that cold front early. At any rate, we do welcome the thicker ice for all users. 
    We are now seeing many more people on the ice in the usual spots and it is nice to see. That means that we are getting more reports of their “take” when out there and learning some patterns.
    As the ice thickens, soon it will be time for the power augers rather than the hand augers. Snow conditions are a little better also, so we are seeing a few families on snowshoes and
  • Anglers still waiting for good ice on lakes
    Tuesday, December 19, 2017 12:06 PM
    Anglers are finally getting into the ice fishing season with only OK ice reported on most lakes. 
    The North Woods is getting too much snow and not enough cold at this point to improve ice conditions and the forecast is ominous. Lakes have the one thing that anglers don’t want early in the season — slush. With more snow, especially a heavy snow, we could be cursed with this slush for the remainder of the winter. 
    Many skiers and snowmobile enthusiasts are delighted with this, but we need more ice out there. We all hope for some colder weather to make the lakes safer. While we’re at it, let’s have
  • Tuesday, December 12, 2017 11:20 AM
    While we are slowly but surely obtaining a snow pack, it is not good news at this point for ice anglers. We would prefer some more cold weather rather than snow to make more safe ice on the lakes.
    The cold weather has been helping, but that severe wind had an odd and negative effect on the ice. It even opened up a few lakes that had been closed. We’re looking at pretty iffy ice on many lakes. 
    Nevertheless, the ice fishing season has started in the area. Anglers are reporting ice thickness from 2 to 6 inches in the area and this is enough to start the hunt for walleyes. To be honest, we
  • Tuesday, December 5, 2017 11:38 AM
    There is a little ice fishing going on at this point, but not a lot. It sure has been a weird early winter, just as it was a weird fall period. 

    The weather continues to be inconsistent, with warm and cold intermixed consistently so that it doesn’t allow for development of good ice on the lakes. It’s early, so hopefully we will get some good ice development with cold temperatures predicted for this week followed by snow eventually.

    There have been a few ice anglers though, and they report decent northern fishing on the shallow weedy lakes where the ice development is going to be the best. Tip-ups with large shiners work best for these fish.

    A good piece of advice for this time of year is
  • Tuesday, November 28, 2017 10:37 AM
    We’re still in that transition period between the open water fishing and the ice fishing season. Calendar-wise, this is about the right time for transition.

    We sure would like some consistent cold weather now to thicken that ice cover. There are a few lakes that are still open but for the most part, the rest are all covered with ice but not necessarily safe to travel on. 

    Every time the North Woods gets some snow, it melts within a few days due to warmer weather. This is probably good for ice development, as we don’t want snow on top of it yet. If you venture onto the ice, wear ice grippers on your boots, as it is very slippery now.

    Believe it or not, there are
  • Anglers between seasons for fishing
    Tuesday, November 21, 2017 11:21 AM
    There is not a lot of fishing going on right now for several reasons. The first is that it is the gun deer season and most folks are concentrating on that. The second is that we are between seasons as far as open water fishing and the ice fishing season.
    The North Woods does have ice on many lakes, but the ice is not good enough for safe fishing. We keep having these warm days interspersed with the cold, so don’t trust that ice yet. There are a few small lakes that anglers have gone on. Take safety spikes and spuds along to test the thickness.
    Getting back to the open water fishing, there are a few walleye anglers still out, but not many. They are doing very well using jigs and minnows in deeper water and
  • Tuesday, November 14, 2017 2:25 PM
    In a dramatic turn late last week, the cold weather overcame most lakes in the area and most of them iced over. It seemed early, but that was mostly because it had been so warm before the cold front hit the area.
    With slightly warmer weather in the forecast this week a few lakes might reopen, but we think the ice fishing season is on the cusp before deer season is here — maybe. We’ve also had a lot of snow and that snow will help the deer hunters.
    Despite the cold weather, there are a few diehard muskie and walleye anglers still out on what open water we have left. Ryan Reynolds of Eagle River caught a monster muskie last week and that
  • Tuesday, November 7, 2017 12:23 PM
    We are sure getting to the end of the open-water fishing season quickly, as these water temperatures are dropping like rocks. Lakes had water temps down to 35 degrees last weekend, so unless we get a profound warming trend, ice fishing is not out of the question on some lakes in the next several weeks. We’ll see. 
    The big drop in those water temps did not bring the amount of muskie action that we hoped for, as it seemed like the fish were stunned by the rapid drop in those temps. The muskie fishing season runs through Nov. 30, but some lakes may freeze over before that.
    If you still have your pier or boat lift in on some of the smaller lakes, you
  • Cold temps improve walleye, muskie fishing
    Tuesday, October 31, 2017 11:18 AM
    Wow, what a reversal in our weather patterns! We went from early fall weather to late fall weather in one day last week, and that late fall pattern is sticking with us. 
    Virtually all the leaves are gone, giving the deer and grouse hunters good sight lines. The snow doesn’t stay at this time of year, but it sure makes a mess for a day or two. 
    Lakes remain high with all the moisture we’ve gotten and boat landings are in great shape. Water temperatures are now down well into the 40s and dropping on a daily basis. As these temps drop and we get into November, the next big item on the slate will be
  • Tuesday, October 24, 2017 3:21 PM
    With late fall on the horizon, the fishing is really good across the area for walleyes and crappies, and should get better for muskies. 
    The water temperatures took an unfortunate jump with that warm weather last week, but the fishing held up pretty well during that period. The water temps that were back to the mid-50s have started to fall rapidly.
    With much colder weather this week, the fishing should be in the very good range. Lake levels are very high. The days have become much shorter now, making it tough to get out with daylight left after working during the day.
    To top that off, we’ve got
  • Tuesday, October 17, 2017 11:14 AM
    We are sure seeing the weather make some moves toward late fall in the last week or so. The nights are now cold, no matter what happens during the daytime.
    When combined with the cold weather and rain, it really drops those water temperatures. Speaking of the water temps, we now have them solidly in the 50s on all but a few lakes. That rain Sunday also dropped a good portion of the leaves still on the trees. Now it also looks like late fall.
    Water levels remain high with all the rain we’ve had, so landings are generally in great shape. Many of the piers at the landing have been removed, so we’re on our own there. Many of the smaller lakes have
  • Tuesday, October 10, 2017 12:35 PM
    Well, it’s finally starting to feel and look a little like fall in the North Woods. It’s about time, as we’ve had periods of inconsistent weather for the last two months.
    The lake levels remain high with all the rain we’ve had, including more than 2 inches last weekend. To our knowledge, all boat landings are in pretty good shape with this high water.
    Weeds are
  • Tuesday, October 3, 2017 12:11 PM
    The North Woods is still not getting normal fall weather, as it seems to swing from too warm to too cold on a weekly basis. 
    We’ve only experienced one freeze so far, but many lakes have turned over recently with those two cold nights. For the sake of fall fishing, we’d like to see it get consistently colder and stay that way for the great fall walleye and muskie fishing.
    Weeds are
  • Tuesday, September 26, 2017 3:20 PM
    In the words of Vince Lombardi, “What the hell is happening here?” We’ve got falling leaves, some loons have left, the geese are flying south — and it is almost 90 degrees! 
    Many of us felt during the cold weather this past summer that this very thing would happen; that we’d get our fill of warm weather just when we didn’t really need or want it. 
    Cooler weather in the forecast this week will bring things a little closer to normal, but it sure has been a different fall. This warm weather we’ve had has resulted in a dramatic rise in the water temperatures. This has
  • Tuesday, September 19, 2017 12:28 PM
    Once again we are blessed with unseasonal, very warm weather for this time of year. While this is great for almost all activities, it is typically no good for our fishing. With water temperatures going up at this time of year, it is very confusing for the fish.
    The worst thing from a fishing standpoint about the warm weather is that it holds up the effects of turnover, so lakes that have started this process seem to stay green and messy until it gets cold again. It also delays the turnover process on the lakes that haven’t started because of the warmer water temps. We’d like the lakes to 
  • Recent weather patterns on a fall roller coaster
    Tuesday, September 12, 2017 1:14 PM
    The weather roller-coaster ride continues as we are being treated to some above-average warm temperatures this week. Last week, we started to think we were in for an early start to a cold fall, but this week summer has reappeared.
    With the 
  • Tuesday, September 5, 2017 3:21 PM
    With colder temperatures this week, fall weather is upon us. Where did the summer go? 
    It has been cool throughout the last few weeks and the nights have been downright cold in some cases. The water temperatures have dropped into the 60s through­out the area. The days are getting much shorter, so even when we have sunlight it is not raising those temperatures much. 
    Some lakes have had some turnover already, although that process will
  • Tuesday, August 29, 2017 2:48 PM
    What we need around here is a little rain. Just kidding. We’ve had a lot of rain and this rain was a cold one, dropping the water temperatures down to a point of being unusually low for this time of year.
    This has been a strange summer, with a few warm fronts, all interrupted by one cold front after another. It will be interesting to see what happens as we get into fall. My fear is that in September, when it is supposed to be cooler, we will have an extended warm period that will really mess up the fishing. We’ll see what happens.
    Notice that
  • Tuesday, August 22, 2017 11:00 AM
    The freight train that is fall is coming down the tracks pretty quickly now, with the cooler nights and colder water temperatures indicating its imminent arrival. 
    The days are getting shorter now, and while we are going to get some warm weather, the general trend will be cooler from this point forward. We’ll start thinking of that great fall fishing coming our way for walleye, crappie and muskie.
    The water temps are
  • Tuesday, August 15, 2017 2:41 PM
    As we head through August, we’re getting into that late summer fishing that can at times be a grind. 
    The lakes have never reached their normal summer temperatures this year, but they are still looking a little “worn” around the edges in many cases. You’ll see a fair amount of scum back in the bays which makes it hard to fish those lily pad areas. If we are going to get outbreaks of “green water” on whole lakes, this is the time. Fortunately, this year has been pretty good due to the colder water.
    Water levels remain high and boat landings are 
  • Tuesday, August 8, 2017 9:56 AM
    Midsummer fishing patterns are dominating the fishing news this week, despite the cold front that came through last week. 
    Maybe the fish are getting used to those cold fronts, as the water temperatures again went down measurably, with a drop of 5 degrees or so on the surface. 
    What a 
  • Tuesday, August 1, 2017 10:53 AM
    Midsummer fishing patterns are on tap for all who go out now, with those climbing water temperatures, more weed growth and high boating traffic.  
    The North hasn’t had much in the way of rain for going on a month now, so the lake levels are falling some. Weed growth is excellent on all lakes. Water temperatures are in the 70s throughout the area, with a few lakes even reaching the 80s. Cool nights have been great, but the daytime temps have been pretty high.
    We’re grateful to finally be rid of those
  • Tuesday, July 25, 2017 2:30 PM
    As you all know, it’s been a very unusual summer. We’ve had alternating cold fronts with warm weather, topped by very rainy periods along with dry spells.
    This weather has made the fishing difficult in many cases, as the fish are just not reacting well to this inconsistency in the weather. Water temperatures have reached the 70s finally.
    Lakes are still high due to
  • Tuesday, July 18, 2017 9:44 AM
    Well, once again we had a cold front go through and lower the water temperatures by 5 degrees or so. We just can’t seem to get normal weather this summer.
    The water temperatures are around the low 70s. It seems to be either hot and humid or cool, rather than that nice consistent 75- to 80-degree weather that we would like. Water levels remain high because of the rain we’ve had, so boat landings are in good shape. We’ve got a lot of summer left, so let’s hope for some consistency from
  • Tuesday, July 11, 2017 11:06 AM
    With the water temperatures finally warming into the 70s, lakes are now getting into closer-to-normal summer conditions throughout the area. 
    Water levels are still high, but falling a little. Weeds are growing and adapting to the higher water levels. Most boat landings are in very good shape despite the high levels. 
    You’ll be
  • Monday, July 3, 2017 1:40 PM
    Here we are in July and the water temperatures are still in the 60s. We have a lot of catching up to do on those temps and on the weed growth that comes with warmer temps. 
    Extensive rains have caused all lakes to be high — some at the highest level in anyone’s memory. Trout streams are equally high. One good thing: those streams are getting flushed out nicely. 
    Landings are in pretty good shape. There is still the
  • Tuesday, June 27, 2017 3:13 PM
    The weather sure has been stinky. We just can’t seem to get rid of the cold fronts this summer. These repeated cold fronts have had a massive effect on the water temperatures, as this last one dropped the temps by five degrees or so.
    Just about when we were heading into summer fishing conditions, we get slammed and water temps dropped into the
  • Tuesday, June 20, 2017 10:12 AM
    Water, water everywhere. The North Woods has been afflicted, again, by a bunch of rainy weather. 
    As a result, the water temperatures have yet again taken a drop due to the rain and the cold front that came with it. 
    If you drive around the area, you will see water where you have never seen it before, and the lakes and rivers are all very high. What a year so far!
    Water temperatures are in the high 60s and low 70s. With all the precipitation, the drought conditions of a few years ago are long gone. Weed growth is good, but 
  • Tuesday, June 13, 2017 1:47 PM
    Summer weather is finally here, with extremely warm weather that has brought the water temperatures up to almost normal. It happened so fast. 
    Of course, it also brought an epic mosquito hatch and that dreaded pine pollen attack for those of us who suffer from allergies. 
    But with the warm water temperatures, it allows swimming and other water activities. Water levels remain high and almost all boat landings are in good shape. Weed growth is now
  • Tuesday, June 6, 2017 11:56 AM
    The North Woods is finally getting some actual summer weather and it has been great for all of us. We’ve had enough rain to last for some time and you’ll notice that the ditches and streams are still quite full. 
    Unfortunately, this means
  • Tuesday, May 30, 2017 11:47 AM
    We certainly have had a spring of inconsistent weather here in the North Woods. This has had a major effect on our fishing, as the water temperatures are significantly below normal.
    In addition, with all the rain we have had, the lake levels are
  • Tuesday, May 23, 2017 11:42 AM
    Cold, windy and raining — what a crummy bit of weather! Once again, the North Woods received some really bad weather right through last weekend. This bad weather dropped the water temperatures by as much as 10 degrees on area lakes, and for the most part shut the fishing down over the weekend.
    The good news in this is
  • Tuesday, May 16, 2017 11:04 AM
    The weather has been gradually improving and the water temperatures should be on the rise if we get some warm nights.
    Water temperatures are getting better with a much stronger sun, and there is some nice weed development starting on many lakes. 
    The forecast is 
  • Tuesday, May 9, 2017 11:55 AM
    All spring now we have been bothered by inconsistent weather, with a few good days interspersed with cold and unpleasant weather. 
    That happened again over the opening weekend and it was both windy and cold, especially on Sunday. Despite that, a good number of anglers fished over the weekend and many of them reported 
  • Tuesday, May 2, 2017 11:32 AM
    What a spring, so far. We’ve had everything from 75 degrees and sun to multiple snowstorms — and rain, a lot of it. The lakes are high, full of water to levels we haven’t seen for years. 
    With opening day for the general game fishing season this Saturday, May 6, we would like 
  • Tuesday, April 25, 2017 11:28 AM
    Don’t put those snow shovels away yet, folks. It’s a spring with both cold fronts and warm fronts. There was even a little snow in the air Sunday morning keeping the water temperatures in the upper 40s. 
    As long as May provides more 
  • Tuesday, April 18, 2017 3:31 PM
    The North Woods is still on that spring roller coaster of weather, having experienced almost summer-like weather and significant snow in the last week. 
    With the recent rain and wind, the ice is gone on all lakes. Pretty early for that, but certainly welcome to most of us. We never got to do a lot of that late-season crappie fishing we like so much because the ice went out so quickly.
    Right now the grass is
  • Perch first to be tested by North Woods anglers
    Tuesday, April 11, 2017 11:51 AM
    We certainly had some nicer weather late last week and on the weekend. The warmer weather got rid of a lot of the ice on lakes in the area, although not all are ice-free at this point. Nevertheless, spring is here for anglers. 
    The loons are back and we’ve seen some geese and ducks in the area. When you go outside, there are birds we haven’t heard since last year. 
    The North Woods will
  • Tuesday, April 4, 2017 10:59 AM
    With our spring weather getting ever nicer, I have one piece of advice for everyone — don’t put those snow shovels away for the year just yet. The North Woods is just bound to have a big snow before May rolls around. 
    This nicer weather that many enjoyed over the weekend may 
  • Lakes have enough ice for those panfish anglers
    Tuesday, March 28, 2017 11:29 AM
    The waiting game before spring really arrives seems to be taunting us. It’s a tough time up here. The North Woods has had enough rain, wind and messy weather to last — it seems — a lifetime. 
    Lakes have
  • Tuesday, March 21, 2017 11:25 AM
    The weather is ever so slowly warming as we head toward the end of March, but it has been a tough month for everyone. We had that false sense of spring in February when it got so warm, but it has been cold since then. 
    This part of spring — that last three to four weeks — can be really
  • Tuesday, March 14, 2017 11:13 AM
    For the past week, at least in the fishing world, we don’t have a lot to talk about. That absolutely miserable weather we had in the last week kept people from getting out and enjoying our late-season ice fishing. 
    Does anyone remember
  • Time to pursue panfish as game fishing ends
    Tuesday, March 7, 2017 3:17 PM
    The game fishing season is over and anglers are limited to panfish for the rest of the winter and spring.
    All in all, it was an OK game fish season, with 
  • Tuesday, February 28, 2017 11:59 AM
    Well, anglers have only a weekend left in the game fishing season before they are limited to just fishing for panfish. The game fishing season comes to an end this Sunday, March 5.
    It is
  • Tuesday, February 21, 2017 11:17 AM
    The North Woods continues to have unusual winter weather, as we have lost much of our snow and some of our ice due to the unbelievably warm weather the past week.
    One can’t help but feel that we’ll 
  • Tuesday, February 14, 2017 2:04 PM
    The best way to describe the overall fishing at this point is to say that the fish are using feeding windows to the extreme right now. 
    Anglers can go out and see fish on their electronics or see fish on the bottom from their dark shacks, but the fish simply will not hit. Then, in a one-hour period they’ll hit like crazy, for reasons that most can’t understand. These feeding windows change daily, so anglers can’t get a good pattern on the fish. 
    What a winter it’s been weatherwise. It’s either raining/sleeting
  • Inconsistent weather leads to tough fishing
    Tuesday, February 7, 2017 2:18 PM
    Fishing remains somewhat inconsistent, as does the weather in the North Woods. We are looking at a week of temperatures varying from lows below zero all the way to highs into the 30s. 
    There is still a lot of winter left, regardless, and we might
  • Tuesday, January 31, 2017 1:25 PM
    The dreaded midwinter blues are upon us, which means fishing is more inconsistent and many people are longing for spring. 
    Well, face the fact that there is a lot of winter left and we might as well make the best of it with ice fishing and other winter activities. 
    There is a lot of good ice fishing left
  • Wednesday, January 25, 2017 1:55 PM
    A continuation of the absolutely weird winter weather has brought slush back into the picture on North Woods lakes.
    The warm temperatures did drop the snow level on the lakes significantly. When we get some colder weather later this week, it should be much easier to get around on the lakes. 
    We’re in the middle of that January

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