As we move through the fall, turnover is starting on many area lakes. This has happened because of the cold nights. The last thing we need now is warmer weather, which tends to keep the effects of  turnover longer. 

If the lake you want to fish is green, with some floating scum on the surface, it is in turnover phase and the fishing can be difficult during that time. When it cleans up, it can be some of the best fishing of the year for both muskies and walleyes. 

Lake temperatures are now in the 60s and hopefully falling. This is the beginning of the best time of the year for muskie anglers.

Muskie fishing is getting good, especially using larger and slower baits as the water temperatures fall. It is time to fish right at the weed edges and off the weeds for them. The feeding windows get longer as the water gets colder. Jerk baits like Suicks and twitch bait are starting to work well now. Live sucker fishing is already producing some bigger fish and will get even better as the temps drop.

Walleye fishing has been good and will get better as the cold sinks in on the deeper lakes. Jigs and minnows are definitely the best baits now, but through the fall we’ll see anglers catching them on crankbaits, especially in the evenings. The walleyes are moving deeper and will be caught well off the weeds in water as deep as 35 feet. On darker water like the Chain, walleyes are now 12 to 14 feet deep  and slowly moving deeper with the baitfish. 

Bass are still feeding in what is left of the weeds and cover structure. The largemouths have produced well all year on plastics, but surface baits are slowing down as the frogs go away. Smallmouths are deeper and can be surprisingly deep on clear lakes. t 

Panfish activity slows in the fall, mostly  because we don’t see many anglers out there as it gets colder. At this time, anglers are doing well for crappies near cribs on the Chain. As always, small minnows or small plastics are best. Some perch anglers are still fishing in the weeds. 

Get out this week and enjoy this great color and warmer fall days on the area lakes.

Good luck and good fishin’.