Who knows what the ice conditions are going to be this week, with the warmer weather having reduced the ice somewhat, but colder weather in the forecast.

To us, it still doesn’t seem like we will have a normal opener with the ice completely gone. The fishing opener is May 4. Looking at the 10-day forecast, we still have some pretty cool weather later into April, so we’ll need a significant warm front to get rid of all the snow and ice. 

On some of the landings, it has gotten difficult to get from the shore to the ice as those shorelines have opened somewhat. Many ice anglers will use waders to get out to the ice at this time of year.

We still have some decent ice and people are having some good action on crappies and bluegills especially. The crappies are still a little deeper on most lakes, with action from 8 to 15 feet seeming to be the norm. These fish will move shallower in the evenings as the water warms. Minnows are working quite well at this point, and rosie reds have been popular. For the ’gills, red spikes and waxies are the best baits, and look for the weedy areas on the lake you are fishing.

As we get further into April, many anglers will fish the rivers south of here, either going to Tomahawk on the Wisconsin River or to the Fremont area for the Wolf River and others to the southeast. 

We’re also not too far away from open water perch fishing up here. These fish will move in almost immediately after the ice goes out on most of our lakes. Waxies, worms or minnows under ultralight tackle work very well in shallow water for these fish. Look for the northern sides of lakes to warm up the soonest and also look for the back or inside of bays to be warm.

We’ve got a lot of fishing ahead of us now.

Good luck and good fishin’.