It’s getting cooler now and that is good news for the fishing, especially the muskie fishing. What a year it has been for the fishing, with warm spells and cold spells and most of all — through it all — wind. 

As of Saturday, the water temperature was 54 degrees. It is beautiful out there beyond words, but sadly the colors will be gone soon. We expect some serious cold weather within the next several weeks and the muskie anglers will welcome it.

Walleye fishing has been very good, with guides reporting great numbers on the Chain. There is a good walleye bite in the fall — just as good as the muskie bite, but lesser known. Jigs and minnows are the best bait right now, and the secret in jigging is to get that bait near the bottom. All the lakes on the Eagle River Chain are producing well in or near the holes. On those few lakes without distinct holes, just fish the deepest part. On the deeper, clear lakes, there is some pretty good action right now. Again, jigs and minnows are the best bait to use. There are some reports of anglers getting some decent fish on crankbaits.

Muskie fishing will only improve as the water temps drop. Muskie anglers wait all year for this to happen, and they will persevere right through to the ice-up. This will produce the best sucker fishing of the year. The biggest problem so far has been the wind, but we hope we’ll get some days without a lot of wind. The best baits are jerk baits and twitch baits over the weeds and on the deeper weed edges. Try some diving crankbaits or plastics over the deeper water. Big baits and slow retrieves will work best.

Panfish action is very good for both perch and crappies, with crappies on the Chain mixed right in with the walleyes in deeper water. Small plastics or fathead minnows are best for these fish. Perch are basically moving to deeper water, but tend to hold longer in the deeper weeds. We see a good number or perch anglers in the fall. 

It’s beautiful out there. There is still some time to enjoy that fall color.

Good luck and good fishin’.