It is hard to believe that we are in September already and that the summer is gone. 

For anglers, we’d like a long, slow descent of the water temperatures. Things are looking more like fall as the weeds start to fall back and the water temps have fallen a little.

 We’ve had enough rain to keep the water levels higher. All boat landings that we know of are in pretty good shape. Water recreation levels are down. All in all, we look forward to a good fall season for fishing for walleye and muskie.

Walleye fishing has been good and bad. The good is that we are seeing good numbers of fish on the Eagle River Chain. The bad is that these numbers have been mostly smaller fish. It just hasn’t been a good year for larger fish on the Chain. We do expect that to change as the fall goes on and the water temps drop. We are presently seeing large numbers of baitfish in the holes, and the walleye will be following those fish. The same patterns are happening on the larger lakes, with movement to deeper water on these lakes. Jigs and minnows are the way to fish at this time, but anglers are still catching some fish on crawlers, especially on the Chain.

Bass fishing remains good throughout the area, with largemouths hitting daily on plastics in weeds, bulrush areas and piers. Morning and evening action on surface baits has been very good. Wacky Worms have been the best plastics. As for smallies, they can be surprisingly deep now and the best way to fish them is with jigs and leeches. We know of some guides catching them in 30 feet of water. Crankbaits will work well around rocks.

Northerns, as usual, are feeding in the weeds mostly. You can also find them on occasion around rock bars, wherever there is baitfish. These fish are daytime feeders. Larger minnows or baits like Mepps spinners or Daredevils are the best baits to throw for them. Or try minnows under slip bobbers and look for the deepest weeds you can find.

Muskie action has been somewhat in the up or down range. If it’s good, it is very good and if it’s bad, it is really slow. If you are going to fish the Chain, try some smaller baits like No. 5 Mepps retrieved very quickly. In deeper water, throw crankbaits or the big plastics. Soon it will be time for jerkbaits and suckers.

Panfish action is still good, with crappies being caught in weeds. Their population has been thinned out some, so move around in those weeds. Use baits like Cubby Jigs or crappie minnows under slip bobbers in the weeds. Bluegills are still in the weeds, and a good general rule is to try the deeper weeds for larger fish. Worms work best. Perch are in the deeper weeds. Try some leeches for them.

Time is running out. Get out there and enjoy the beauty of fall.

Good luck and good fishin’.