I don't claim to be an expert fisherman ... just a guy who loves to fish and has been blessed for his efforts. I learned a long time ago that in fishing, and in much of life, you get out of it what you put into it. I work hard when fishing, I study a lot, and always try to learn something on every outing. I hope you can use the information I post on this blog to learn something as well. Thanks for following along!

Friday, December 31, 2010

Another Beautiful Chrome Steelhead

Went 1 for 1 today fishing with my friend and taxidermist Tom Wendel. This gorgeous hen steelhead took about 10 minutes to land. Watch for the video to be posted shortly.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A Day of Flurries

Caught a pair of Steelies today ... went 2 for 6 with one break-off at the hole again. I need to look for new leader line! Fished for 9 hours (7 am to 4 pm) and had all of my bites in two different flurries ... one from 11:45 to 12:15 (2 for 4) and the other from 2:30 to 3:00 (0 for 2). Spawn accounted for 5 of the bites with the other coming on a small lake shiner.

Gorgeous day ... 30 degrees and sunny. Found all of the fish in the shade near pumps. I struggled today until I found that pattern on my 5th move of the morning. Sometimes you just have to keep working ... and your efforts will pay off. I drilled a lot of holes and just kept hopping until the pattern became evident.

Supposed to get rain and melting the next few days. Hopefully that will pick the bite up a little. Everyone seems to be struggling to some degree.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Tying up some sacs tonight

What could be more fun on a cold, snowy December night than enjoying a beer, watching your two least favorite football teams play (sorry to my friends from Chicago :-))on TV, and tying up a few dozen fresh spawn sacs? For those of you who aren't familiar with the process, it starts with this ...

and ends looking like this ...

I prefer to tie my sacs in orange and chartreuse mesh (bridal veil) using magic thread. I like them about the size of your thumb nail but will go smaller at time, specifically when fishing clear water.

Good, fresh spawn sacs are difficult to find, especially those made from Brown Trout spawn. When you find them in a bait shop they will usually cost about $.50 each. Fishing 3 lines for 10 hours and keeping fresh sacs on ... you can go through a small fortune in spawn if your buying it.

Here's an easy-to-follow guide to tying sacs.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Frustrating Day!

Did not lack for action today ... had 14 bites, 4 hook-ups, 3 broken lines, and caught one smaller steelie. Didn't end up fishing the virgin territory we hoped to because whitefish boats had opened up that stretch of river. Ended up traveling 90 miles south to more familiar territory. Unfortunately the water in that river was 2' lower than normal. Ended up in a marina where we had most of our action. The vast majority of our bites were extremely light ... they were tasting, not eating. Lost 2 fish on break-offs at the hole and another large fish on a strong run. Days like today remind you of why they call it fishing ... and not catching.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Ever see a 20 lb brown come through a hole in the ice?

A facebook friend sent me this pic he took this morning of a 20 lb brown he saw caught.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Three fish that highlighted my year ...

The year is quickly coming to a close. I might get one more ice fishing outing in ... but whether I do or not 2010 had some definite highlights!
January 9th ... my biggest Brown through the ice (Approximately 34" and 17 lbs)

September 16th ... My largest King Salmon (36", 18 lbs). One of four I caught that day.

October 21st .... My largest Brown (31", 20 lbs, 23" girth).

It was an awesome year for me in the harbors of Lake Michigan. My bass fishing was cut short by back problems.

My goals for 2011 ... 33" Steelhead, a 25 lb Brown, a 40" salmon, and a 7 lb largemouth. It sounds ridiculous, but I think they're all within reach.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Big Steelhead Caught Ice Fishiing in Wisconsin

Sorry, but I'm drooling a little just thinking about it!

The weather looks like it will allow me to chase some slob browns and steelies tomorrow. We might get the unique opportunity to fish both long and short rods at the same time. If you haven't discovered these yet for ice fishing predatory fish ... you need to!

The Automatic Fisherman allows you to fight fish with a short rod and reel as opposed to using the traditional hand-over-hand method through the ice.

The harbor I plan to fish has enough ice that we should be able to fish both Autos and long rods tomorrow. And THAT'S why I'm drooling! :)

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Snow, snow, go away ... so I can fish on Saturday!

Want to get fishing on Saturday ... but the forecast now calls for 3 to 5" on Friday night and 1 to 3" on Saturday. Of course it's beautiful all week while I'm working!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Friday, November 26, 2010.

Decided to venture out with my buddy Troy. Founds a place to hide from the wind below the harbor wall that was actually quite comfortable considering it was 18 degrees with 30 mph winds. Ended up with these 6 fish:

This was my first personal double. Caught the brown on a green and gold Cleo ... hit right at the dock as I was about to pull the bait out of the water. As I was taking the hook out we heard my other rod sliding across the dock. Grabbed it and landed this beautiful male steelie that inhaled a chunk of cured skein fished under a float.

Got this buck steelie on a spawn sack.

Hen brown hit a black/silver X-Rap as it paused between jerks. I was letting it sit in neutral buoyancy for 5 to 10 seconds ... then giving it a small twitch and letting it sit again. This fish just hammered it as it sat still.

Hen brown caught on spawn.

Seeferellon Brown caught while retreiving a spawn sack. It hit while I was cranking the spawn in to go home. Followed it like a muskie would a jerk bait, then grabbed it and turned. The fish swam this line into another float line. As the second line was being dragged along it got hit by ANOTHER brown. This one broke off as Troy tried to free the line / set the hook. Crazy experience you only see on those magical days!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Steelhead Double Ice Fishing in Wisconsin!!!!!!

It's ALMOST that time of year again! I can't wait for first ice!!!!!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Went 3 for 3 fishing a pump... 2 steelies and a whitefish. We'll see if they're any good to eat! Big steelie came on fresh brown skein. She hit as I was packing up ... and pretty much set the hook herself. Temp about 50, rain, E wind changed to S. Caught the first Steelie at about 7:00, the second about noon.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Took my brown down to Tom Wendel today. Stopped to fish on the way ... fished from 9 am to 1 pm. Went 4 for 7 wirth 2 buck Coho, one hen Steelie, and one hen Brown ... all on sacs. Lost a monster brown!!!!!!!! Broke me off under the dock in the corner with the pumps. Guy pulled the plug on the pumps at noon so I found another and got the brown there. Forgot the camera ... no pics.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Fished with my buddy Sean today. He got his first coho ... I got a chunky buck steelhead. Both on spawn. Lost a big male king that broke me off and a nice hen steelhead right at the net. Cold, windy, cloudy.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Got two browns and lost a dark king this morning. The smaller brown came on brown spawn, the big one came on salmon skein. Fish was 31" with a 23" girth! She's headed to the taxidermist! Caught her in the corner of the marina near the condos. The browns were stacked in the current produced by the pump.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Went 4 for about 15 ... all 4 year old kings. 3 bucks and a hen ... full of skein. 3 were still fairly chrome. Two came on firetiger J-13's and 2 on skein from last Saturday's fish. Just a blast fighting these fish. Weather was cool with SE winds when I got there at 5:00 am, then shifted to west at 10 am and north at about noon. Didn't seem to matter. Cranks worked better early and skein turned on about 11:00 am.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Fished the launch starting at 5:00. Nothing for 1 1/2/ hours, then they went nuts from 6:30 to 7:30. Ended up with 2 kings, one buck and one hen. Lost two others and had about 10 other hits ... all on firetiger J-13's. Weather was cool, rainy, and windy with wind out of the S.

Saw one other guy get 5 on skein in about an hour.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

August 11 and 12, 2010

Tried something new last night ... started fishing at the gap end of the south breakwall at 10:30 pm and fished until 7:00 this morning. Fought off the humidity, mosquitoes, and a raccoon. About 1:30 the baitfish started showing up. I grabbed my jigging rod and had a hit immediately on 4" gulp. Hook popped out, had another hit, then caught a 7 pound Brown. Beautiful buck, built like a football. Had a couple more hits on the gulp, then caught about an 8 lb king on a glow KO Wobbler. Had a few more hits on gulp just before sunrise. When the sun came up I couldn't believe the amount of bait in the area, but it was all small.

I really enjoyed the experience ... saw an awesome meteor shower and a gorgeous sunrise. Did not see another person around until 5:00 a.m. ... felt like I had the entire lake to myself. Can't wait to do it again!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Milwaukee Harbor - July 10, 2010

Matt and I fished Milwaukee today ... jigging Gulp for Chinook. Caught one about 11 lbs, and Matt and I both lost one. Had a few other bites.

We started at about 5:00 and we were late! Saw three fish caught while we pulled up to the middle gap. Fish disappeared about 8:00 am when the lake went flat. Water temp about 66 degrees in the gap. Had a blast!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Tuesday, July 7, 2010

Fished behind the bank for the first time tonight. It looks fantastc! We only got one, but the lake was flat calm and the sky was sunny. I want to hit this spot again on Saturday morning.

Running total - 318 largemouth

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Saturday, July 3, 2010

My back felt better today. Fished from 5:30 am to 1:15 pm ... Got 15 largies including 3 @ 16" and an 18". All came on Gulp sinking minnows wackey hooked from under docks and the N end. Most on natural worms and a few on Andy's green. Found most fish wanted it to sit for a while, and a few hit retrieving it. Warm and windy today ... 15 mph from the south. Tough worming in wind, but they were definitele active! Water's getting a little greener.

Running total - 317 largemouth

Friday, July 2, 2010

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Tested my back tonight ... and it failed. Got about an hours worth in and had to quit. Got two small bass on the north shore under docks. Both on sinking minnows rigged texas style.

Running total - 302 largemeouth

Sunday, June 20, 2010

June 20, 2010

I've got to stop fishing this lake on weekends. Way too many people to deal with. Went out with Andy tonight and ended up with 3, including the 20" in the pic. Saw it swirl after a baitfish, threw a creature at it and it hit right away. Thought it was actually bigger when its head first came out of the water.

Running total - 300 largemouth

Lake Waubesa - June 19, 2010

Got out from 7:00 to 9:30 tonight - fished the west shore. Saw schools of shad (?) surfacing on the inside edge of the weeds all night. Caught 3 largies and 2 snakes on DT-1's All small. Missed a few others but still slow! Water seemed cool, high, and clear.

Running total - 297 largemouth

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Skunked again! I had one small fish hit about 10' away, and that was it. Fished 2 1/2 hours from 7 to 9:30 pm. Conditions looked good - lake flattened out about 8:00 and yet nothing interested in DT-1's on the surface. Bluegill fisherman were getting skunked too. Water is very high after all the rain we've had.

Had a run-in with the guy that manages the apt. building next to the Beach House. Said I wasn't supposed to be fishing under private docks. Let's just say ... it stop me from doing it!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Monday, June 14, 2010

Not a good night. Andy got 7, I got the skunk! AND ... I had a snakey pike sink a pair of hooks into two of my fingers. Not good! Conditions looked perfect ... just didn't produce. Need some heat to color up the water a little.

Running total - 294 largemouth

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Sunday, June 13, 2010

Looked like it was going to be a good day .... drizzle, overcast, faily calm. Got this 20" in the first 1/2 hours. Fished 5 more hours and only ended up with 5. Got them all to the east of the Beach House on DT-1's.

Running total - 287 largemouth

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Saturday, June 12, 2010

Fished a few hours after Erin's graduation party. Only got 8, but Andy got a beautiful 20". Looked like it just ate a bluegill. Had a number of larger fish hit and miss, including 3 by the Beach House. Everything on DT-1's on the calm shoreline between 6:30 and 8:30 pm. Cloudy, warm but cooling off as the night went on.

Running total - 282 largemouth

Friday, June 11, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Thursday, June 10, 2010

Slow night tonight .... Cool NE wind. Fished the flat in front of the dock, got 5 largies and 2 decent pike onthe brown and yellow DT-1. One largie at 16" and 3 at 17". Nice average size, just not much action. Cold front came through before the heat expected this weekend.

Running total - 274 largemouth

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Got out for a few hours before dark. Caught 9 on the W shore, biggest @ 17". Started out good but died at 8:30 when a massive mayfly hatch began. Strong W winds were swirling. Everything on DT-1's.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Saturday, June 5, 2010

Got up early today - fished 5:15 to 11:00 am and got 23 largemouth and 3 northerns. One largie on a Trigger X frog, the rest on DT=1 in Bluegill colors. Had probably 8 legals with 4 @ 18". Then went back with Andy in the evening and got 8 more inluding an 18 1/2+ and 19" in the rain.

Running total - 260 Largemouth

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Thursday, June 3, 2010

FINALLY - a nice female. Caught this 21" on the flat tonight on a DT-1 at about 8:50 pm. Water was very calm and higher after the rain. Ended up with 5, included one on a senko in the docks. Fished fro 7 to 9.

Running total - 229 largemouth

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Wednesday, JUne 2, 2010

Got out from 7:30 to 9:30 pm ... got 10 largemouth, all cookie cutters at 13-14". One on a white jerk shad, 9 on a DT-1. Most came after 9:00 pm.

Storm came through at 5:30 - heavy rain and some lightning. Wind switched from NW to E after the storm and temps dropped about 10 degrees.

Running total - 224 largemouth.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Memorial Day 2010

Grrrrrrrrr ... Lost an absolute MONSTER tonight. Could have been 24". Hit on a DT-1 just as it hit the water. Got 10 cranks in before it jumped and tossed the bait.

Spent the evening on the west shore. Still fairly slow. Lake is all chewed up from the boats. I was told they mowed that shoreline 5 days ago. Ended up with 9 ... all on DT's. Had a few ticks on worms under docks, but that was it.

Running total - 214 largemouth

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Sunday, May 30, 2010

Really slow again today ... fished about 4 hours and got 3 largemouth - two on sinking minnows under docks and 1 @ 17" on a DT-1 on the flat at dark. A lot of torn up weeds blown in. Water was turning green already and very warm in the shallows.

Running total - 205 largemouth.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Saturday, May 29, 2010

Got out at 5:15 am only to find a bunch of boats already on the flats. Caught 3 small males ... had to quit by 8:00 because of pain in my hip. Got the feeling they fed all night with the full moon. They were not aggressive at all this morning. Calm, sunny, and hot today with a high in the upper 80's.

Running total - 202 largemouth

Friday, May 28, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Thursday, May 27, 2010

I thougth the full moon and warm water temps would get the females feeding after the spawn. It didn't. Fished McConnell and the Milfoil flat ... got 14 males on frogs and DT-1's. Fished from 5:30 to 9:30. Pretty disappointing. It's still fun to catch them using both of those methods!

Running total - 199 largemouth.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Fished for about 45 minutes tonlght before a storm hit. Caught 3 small males near the Green Lantern dock. Had a number of hits on the Chatterbait on the milfoil flat right before the lightning forced me off the lake.

Running total - 185 largemouth.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Saturday, May 22, 2010

Went out with Andy and Jeff in his boat. Boat traffic was NUTS! Temp was 76 and 10 mph winds out of the south. Found fish in the milfoil again .... very few under the docks. Andy got this 19 1/2 " female on a green sinking minnow in 4' milfoil. I got 6 on Chatterbaits, Andy got 5 , Jeff got 3. Tough conditions ... clear and sunny. Carp tore up the flat while spawning. Went out again in the evening alone. Caught 11 males, 3 about 15".
Running total - 182 largemouth - 2 @ 19"

Friday, May 21, 2010

Lake Waubesa - May 21, 2010

Got out for 3 hours tonight from 7 to 10 pm. Caught 23 smaller males, about half of those after dark on a Chatterbait. Lake was flat calm. Carp all over the shallows.

Running total - 165 largemouth, 1 walleye, 1 muskie

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Got 40 tonight with Troy. Warm temps (upper 70's) and calm. Slight breeze out of the NE. I caught 26, including 4 @ 17". Most in the milfoil. Bass appear to be spawning in holes in the milfoil. Saw several in the shallows as well. Caught everything on frogs again. Lake is starting to slop up. Some of the water is getting green. A lot of scum on the surface already. Cottonwoods are just starting to go to seed.

Running total - 142 largemouth, 1 walleye, 1 muskie.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Got 23 tonight from 5:30 to 8:30. Wind was calm on the weed flat. All came out of the milfoil again, most on the outside edge tonight. TONS of gills and crappie in shallow on the beds. Bass were spread out all over the flat. Probably had 50 bites. Bass included 2 @ 18", a 17", and 3@ 16".

Running total - 117 largemouth, 1 walleye, 1 muskie

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Lake Waubesa - May 15 and 16, 2010

Got 20 bass between the two days, most on a jig yesterday and all on weedless Trigger X frogs today ... all in te milfoil. Females are moving into the beds with water temps at about 61. Had two 18" and a 17". The rest were smaller males.

Running totals - 94 largemouth, 1 walleye, and 1 muskie.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Thursday, May 13, 2010

Got 20 largemouth tonight on the weedflats on the north end and west end by McConnell. Most came on either a bluegill colored Hollow Belly Swim Bait or jig and chigger craw. Strong wind out of the SW.

19" Largemouth
Running total - 74 largemouth, 1 walleye, 1 muskie

Monday, May 10, 2010

Lake Waubesa - Sunday, May 9, 2010

Got 17 by myself today. Mostly sunny - high of about 66. Winds fairly calm. Water temp about 60. Found fish on the north and west shores, most were in 1-2 feet of water. North shore had the warmest water and a lot of weed growth already. Cuaght fish on jigs and chigger craws, twitching rapalas, and hollow bellied swimbaits rigged weedless.

Running total for 2010 - 54 largemouth, 1 walleye, 1 muskie

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Lake Waubesa - May 3, 2010

Fished with Andy ... got 10 between 5:30 and 7:30 pm. Water still too cold for females ... except the chunky 18" in the photo. Caught a total of 30 between May 1 & 3. All males but this one. Caught most on a jig and chigger craw in very shallow water under docks. Also got a 34" muskie on May 2 at the trestle.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

March 30, 2010

Fished with Eric, Jeff, and Jim. Caught 18 to 20 Lakers, 2 walleyes, and a smallie. Very windy by 11:00 a.m.... needed to head to the river to hide. Biggest laker was about 18 lbs. All fish we caught jigging gulp.