There has been a bit of a slowdown in fishing success in the last week or so in response to the colder weather. Not as bad as usual, but still there. 

We are also getting a slightly heavier snow cover out there, but still lighter than normal. This has been causing some slush on a few lakes. Fortunately, nothing like last year. There have been thousands of anglers on the ice, especially on weekends. Anglers are driving on many lakes. As always, if you are going on the Chain, use caution.

Walleye fishing has remained decent. As usual, the fishing is best in the evenings and after dark. Catfish and Eagle lakes on the Chain have been productive. Most anglers are using medium shiners under their tip-ups, but a few prefer suckers. There are a few lakes, like Kentuck, where the suckers work better than shiners. The optimum depth on the Eagle River Chain remains 10 to 18 feet. On the deeper lakes, try some deep-water jigging during the afternoon. This is done with vertical jigs tipped with minnow heads. Look for some of the deep rock bars for good action.

Northerns are, as usual, active daily. They seemed to slow down during the cold weather, but you can usually get some on tip-ups in or near the weeds. Larger shiners work best. As we get nearer spring, many anglers will resort to jigging in these weeds with some success.

Panfish action  has been quite good in the last week, although the colder weather kept the number of anglers down. Perch action has been much improved, with anglers getting perch on wigglers or red spikes in soft-bottom areas. These fish travel in schools seeking wigglers in the mud. Lakes like South Twin and Kentuck have provided some good action. Crappie action in deeper water has remained good, especially on the Chain near those deep holes. Either setting tip-downs or jigging with vertical jigs tipped with waxies has been working well. Remember that these fish will suspend, so you should be searching vertically. Bluegills are in the weeds as usual, and hitting well on waxies or red spikes on teardrop jigs.

We still have a lot of fishing time left this winter. 

Good luck and good fishin’.