Fishing & Outdoor Report

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Fishing & Outdoor Reports for Washburn County

12/3/18 - Reported by Washburn County Tourism

As December has blown in so have some cooler temps which is just what the ice fisherman like to see because that can only mean the ice just keeps on getting better. There have been reports of ice as thick as 6 inches in some areas. The fish really seem to be hitting hard that last hour or so before dark - especially the Pike & Walleye. Always remember to be safe and check the ice conditions before venturing out as some of the larger lakes won't have as much ice yet. Good luck out there & stay safe! 

11/27/18- Reported by Washburn County Tourism

The nine day Rifle Season has come to a close, and we saw some beautiful deer harvested. We are now a couple days into the Muzzleloader season which lasts until Wednesday, December 5th. Good luck to the hunters that are still out there. 

As for the fishing side of things - with the cold temps most Washburn County lakes have begun to make their first ice. There have been a few brave fishermen out there, but please be very cautious as this is the first ice and it may still be thin in places. WCTA loves to hear about what you're up to in the outdoors so feel free to send us photos, share your stories with us. You just might see it featured on the official Fishing & Outdoor Report! Good Luck out there!! 

11/12/18 - Reported by AAA Sports 

Even though it looks like early ice, ALWAYS use caution and know your area! The big gun deer season is upon us!  We will be open Friday night until 10:00 p.m. and Saturday at 5:00 a.m. to  help you with last minute scopes, bore sighting, etc. Make sure to dress for the below average temperatures.

 

11/8/18 - Reported by Jim Stroede Guide Service 

I’ve continued to take some folks out musky fishing this past week in Washburn County.  Fishing has been a bit on the slow side, it seems like we’ve been getting fewer chances at musky’s each time out.  We are getting the occasional fish to grab a live sucker, hooking them and landing them has proven to be quite an adventure here lately.  Water temperatures are in the low to mid 40 degree range depending on the lake. A forecast of daytime highs below freezing could keep us off the water, and/or end the season, we’ll just have to see how it plays out.
Good luck and good fishing,

 

10/1/18 - Reported by Jim Stroede Guide Service 

Musky fishing here in Washburn County is getting better with the onset of autumn. Lots of nice fish are being caught across the area. Cooler lake temperatures have musky's hitting live bait more and more this week. Big jerk baits and soft plastics are catching a good amount of fish too. Fall colors are starting to come on now as well, what a great time to be outdoors!
Good luck and good fishing, Jim Stroede 

9/24/19 - Reported by AAA Sports

 Fall weather gets the fish moving!  Bluegills are plentiful and a couple of nice Northerns were brought in.  Muskie fisherman are getting more active.  We had three different groups in for Muskie suckers over the weekend.  We still have leeches (small and regular).  Small game, bear and deer archery hunting are all in progress. Waterfowl hunting opens this weekend.  Our next "Conceal and Carry Class" is October 13th at 10:00 a.m. 

 

 9/19/18- Reported by Jim Stroede Guide Service 

Musky fishing has been improving here in Washburn County this week, and with the forecasted cool down starting tonight things should only get better on the big fish front!   In my boat we've seen increased action on topwater baits, really the only bait getting bit this week has been the prop baits.  We would have had a great week if we could have sealed the deal on a few big musky's, but hey, that's how it goes.  I took a group out for a multiple spieces trip early one morning and we did pretty well.  Big bluegills and a few crappies were most of the catch, but a few bass and a walleye also hit the net. 
I spent an hour filleting that day, so that was good!
 

9/10/18- Reported by AAA Sports

Fall weather is approaching, the foggy mornings are giving away to clear sunny days. Fish are moving again. We had 2 Northern brought in from Spooner Lake, 30" and 24", using northern minnow. And dandy crappie over 1 lb. from on the River, they were fishing for walleye with fatheads. Archery season is just around the corner. Bear hunters are out and waterfowl season is next. There are still antlerless tag available in Burnett and Washburn counties.

 

9/3/18- Reported by AAA Sports

The cooler mornings have the fish more active, the weekend was pretty productive and there were a lot of people out fishing. Nothing much to brag about but catching a few for the frying pan is always good. The Muskie fisherman are starting to move from lures to live sucker minnows. So much fun to have the kids come in for crawlers or waxies  and brag about the fish they have been catching. GOOSE SEASON: opened on Saturday, Grandsons Luke and Cade and another buddy got 15 on Saturday and Dawson Patrick said the they got 10 on Saturday. DEER:There are still antlerless tags available in  Barron and Washburn county on public and private lands. Burnett has private tags only left. Sawyer and Douglas counties were sold out the first week. BEAR:  Wednesday September 5th- Oct 9 - ZONE C bear hunting with aid of bait and all other legal methods EXCEPT DOGS. All other zones dogs are premitted, but check the dates. 

8/20/18- Reported by Jim Stroede Guide Service 

We have seen a nice improvement in the fishing here in Washburn County this week.  Musky fishing is getting better as we've had action on topwaters and bucktails early and late in the day.  Weed beds near deep water seen to be the prime location right now. The first big cool down of early fall should turn these fish on majorly.  A mixed bag of Walleyes, bass and panfish have been biting on the lakes I've been on. It's currently a surprisingly shallow bite, 6-10 feet.  Bait shops no longer have leeches available, so we've made the switch to nite crawlers. Lake temps are in the 75-80 degree range.
Good luck and good fishing!

 

8/13/18- Reported by Jim Stroede Guide Service 

Fishing has been tough this week around Washburn County.  We've picked up a few walleyes, a few pike, and a few smallmouth on area lakes.  Both jigging and trolling have caught fish, but overall its been tough going. The most consistent fishing has been for largemouth bass. Early in the day and again later just before dark it seems the bass get aggressive. We've done well on wacky worms and topwaters.  Musky fishing has been tough by and large also, however the evening bite is beginning to pick up a bit. I'm suspecting that when the hot weather breaks and waters cool fishing will pick up nicely.
Good luck and good fishing,
Jim Stroede 

7/17/18- Reported by AAA Sports

Hot weather has the fisherman out earlier in the day or into the early evening hours. Weeds on the lakes have us selling a lot of weedless hooks and lures such as the Johnson Silver Minnow or the Eppinger weedless spoons such as the Red eye. Also the 6" and 8" weedless worms. We just got in some new half head jigs for those of you who have asked. Also the Kalin "google Eye rattler". Not much for "show off" fish have come in but just a lot of fish for the dinner table. Don't forget our monthly fishing contest, good for $10.00 in bait! Coffee's on at 6:00 am!

7/10/18- Reported by Jim Stroede Guide Service 

Musky fishing is picking up here in Washburn County.  We've been getting bit with bucktails and topwaters mostly, rubber jerkbaits are getting a few looks from bigger fish too. Largemouth bass continue to be very aggressive both early and late in the day. Wacky worms are great at times but other times they prefer a scum frog or other type of topwater. 
Some of the smaller, off the beaten path kind of lakes are really turning on around here, so don't miss out on the action!
Good luck and good fishing,
Jim Stroede 

6/25/18- Reported by Jim Stroede Guide Service 

Bass fishing has been great all over Washburn County this week. Largemouth are in the pads early in the day and hitting wacky worms like crazy.  Smallmouth are more wood and rock oriented, and going good on jig and craw combos.
Good luck and good fishing,
Jim Stroede 

6/23/18- Reported by AAA Sports  

Rick was out on Lipsie with four guys on Sunday; they caught over 85 nice panfish/crappies. They were using waxies and occasionally throwing out some leech for bait. Another gentleman was out on McKenzie and caught a dandy walleye on Saturday morning using leeches and his favorite secret lure. We're selling lots of crawlers right now as well. Some guys are buying a flat and keeping them for the whole summer in crawler bedding and worm food. I had an uncle that fed them egg shells and coffee grounds. Assuming that the lakes "up north" are compromised by the rains and subsequent flooding, lots of fishing would be going downstream. 

 6/19/18 - Reported by Jim Stroede Guide Service

Even though it seems I'm always launching the boat into an east wind the fishing has remained good here in Washburn County this week.  We've been catching a mixed bag of walleyes, bass, pike and panfish on many of our lakes.  Water temps have held steady in the upper 60's for the most part, the cool rain has been a factor in keeping the temps down to the refreshingly cool place they are at, the fish seem happy!  Good green weeds are one of the best spots to fish on any lake right now, as lots of fish are hanging here. Slip bobbers or jigs and leeches are a good choice bait wise, also the largemouth bass are jumping on wacky worms like mad right now, which is a lot of fun too.  All in all things are going good and the bite has been strong most of the time.Good luck and good fishing,

6/4/18 - Reported by Jim Stroede Guide Service

Fishing has been very good around Washburn County this week. We've done quite well on Walleyes and bluegills in particular. For walleyes a jig and leech presentation is doing good. Look for good green weeds In 6 to 12 feet on area lakes.  Bluegills have been shallow and spawning this week. Many areas hold bluegills during the spawn, keep moving checking shallow shoreline areas until you find them. The 'gills should willingly bite a wax worm on a small hook suspended under a small bobber, no need to get fancy about it as they should be easy to catch most days.

5/29/18- Reported by AAA Sports  

It was a great Memorial Day weekend. Record number of people in the store. We literally ran out of some live bait on Saturday before the supplier came. With the weather being so hot, the fishing was better early morning and later evenings. There was some nice walleye off of Shell Lake with leeches, but really early ( like 5 AM) We got into some nice crappies and blue gills on Spooner both Saturday and Sunday night. (Jigs and waxies) Snagged a couple bass while moving to the hot spot. Depending on the lake the fish are spawning .Little later than usual, but the hot weather has the shortened the time frame. More people moving into the plastics and lures rather than live bait as this crazy hot weather continues.  Pro tour  5" trick sticks have been going well, and Berkley 7" powerbait. We have  all sizes of leeches, they last a long time if you keep them cold and clean. Coffee's on at 6 AM everyday, have a great week!

5/17/18 - Reported by Long Lake Bait, Tackle & C-Store

Let the Fishing Begin!!! Things are starting to pick up on Long Lake/Mud Lake this week. Water temps as of Wednesday night on Long Lake were between 60-62 degrees, Mud Lake coming in around 69 degrees. Fish are beginning their trek to the shallows but some still deeper. Nice Bluegills 8”+ seem to be liking red worms and waxies. Crappie are beginning to bite too and some nice ones at that 13”+! Crappie Minnows seem to be working.On the Bass side of things they are hopin as well! Word is the Largemouth seem to like clacking baits and the Small Mouth Jerk Bait. Walleye are still on the slow side, but a few are being caught. Walley size limit on Long Lake is 18” or larger to keep. Panfish still 25 in general. Public landing piers are in as well as a new addition at each of the landings: Picnic tables provided by the Long Lake Chamber of Commerce!

Fishing Report 5/16/18- Reported by  Jim Stroede Guide Service

Crappie fishing is just beginning to pick up as a good number of fish are starting to move into the shallows now.  We had a nice morning the other day boating lots of nice crappies and also a few big bluegills. The crappies seemed to like the small jig and plastic baits that we were throwing.  Water temperatures in Washburn County are in the mid 50's currently. Good luck and good fishing!

Fishing & Outdoor Report 5/9/18- Reported by Washburn County Tourism

Spring has sprung in Washburn County! The weather was absolutely beautiful for Opening Weekend! With a majority of the lakes having ice out, fishing was very good. Walleye that were anxious to spawn, were very hungry.  Anglers had good luck fishing with jigs and minnows. Walleye fishing should be excellent for the time being as they continue to spawn. Birds have flown back to the Northwoods and many of the trees are in the bud or flowering stages.  Bears and their cubs are out from hibernation and looking for food. Make sure to keep an eye on your birdfeeder. Spring turkey hunting is in its 4th week. Tom turkeys are gobbling and displaying for the hens. Elk Hunting tags are available from May 1st- 31st  for Wisconsin’s first ever Elk Hunt. Four tags will be given to four Wisconsin residents through a random drawing. A fifth elk tag will be rewarded to a Wisconsin resident through a raffle drawing held by the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.

5/2/18 - Reported by Long Lake Bait, Tackle & C-Store

Count Down to Fishing Opener!
Ice out update on Long Lake.
The first photo was taken this morning at 6:30 am in the narrows in front of the Rockford House Saloon.
 
 
The other two photos were taken at the Narrows Landing last night, May 1st. The left photo is looking off to the NE of the landing and the other is looking out toward Mud Lake. The channel to Mud Lake is open. Ross at Lincolnwood Resort was reporting in at 13" on some parts of Long Lake yet.
 
 
 

5/2/18 Reported by AAA Sports  

The ice is going off area lakes daily, Spooner was open off the Mann landing and dark ice off the golf course landing..maybe by this weekend it will be completely gone. Most river fishing is good to go.

5/1/18 - Reported by Shell Lake Marine

Small lakes and flowages are open but the larger last still haven't completely broke out. The shorelines are open but theres still ice in the middle of the lakes. 

4/27/18 - Reported by Long Lake Bait, Tackle & C-Store

Ice at the North End is coming in at 2+ feet Ross at Lincolnwood reporting in around 21"-23" Shore lines & Landing are beginning to deteriorate.Here are some pics from the North end and narrows taken today at noon. Fishing is picking up nice Bluegill's jigging on tungsten jigs and some nice crappies were being caught on tip-downs. 

Fishing & Outdoor Report 4/23/18- Reported by AAA Sports & Washburn County Tourism

This warm weather has started to break up the ice along the lake shores. On the small lakes it seems as if most of the ice is already out but the larger lakes still have brave fishermen venturing out. Starting getting ready for the spring fishing opener just over a week away!

The 2nd season of for turkeys starts Wednesday, April 25th. If you have harvest a bird feel free to share your photos with us! Use #WashburnCounty #HuntingWashburnCo on your photos, you just might see your photo on the outdoor report or one of our social media pages! 

 

Fishing & Outdoor Report 3/29/18Reported by AAA Sports

With this last big snowfall, there is not much to report as far as fishing goes. However, we do have an update on the availability of tags for turkey hunting: There are no tags left in Zone 6, but there are 2 tags left for the last two weeks of hunting in Zone 4. Fishing opener is only 2 weeks away! Time to get those rods and reels out and get them ready!

 

Fishing & Outdoor Report 3/29/18Reported by AAA Sports

The panfish are coming on again! After a couple of weeks of slow fishing, last Thursday the fish got hungry again. The fish are biting on  waxies, spikes and crappie minnows. There is still a lot of ice. However, the landings are starting to break up.

Fishing & Outdoor Report 3/16/18- Reported by AAA Sports

 The weather looks to be in the upper 30’s during the day and in the teens at night, so the ice should stay good for awhile yet.Fishing was really slow after those last two big snowfalls. It got really slushy on the lake and made it hard to get around. Starting last Friday, the fishing picked up. Waxies and crappie minnows seem to be working well right now. Some nice perch have been caught off Spooner Lake and bluegills in Dilly Lake. Be persistent and be patient!

 2/27/18- Reported by  Jim Stroede Guide Service

Washburn County recently received a foot of new snow, this has been great for skiing and snowmobilers but has made getting out on the ice a little bit of a struggle for atv and truck traffic. Walking out to good crappie and bluegill fishing is still very good and easy on Long Lake. Multiple locations are perfect for walk out fishing.  Tiny jigs and soft plastics are working well right now.  The use of a flasher and or underwater camera is a great help for catching fish.

 2/26/18- Reported by AAA Sports

The weather pattern from this past weekend made it difficult for fishing. The weather pattern for this weekend looks very favorable for fishing. Get out and enjoy the last weekend of game fishing!

  2/16/18- Reported by AAA Sports

There has been a lot of successful fishing out on Spooner Lake. Colder temps are keeping some of the fishermen (and women) off the lakes. But for those getting out and being persistent, it pays off. Game fishing closes on March 4th. Make sure you get out there before then!  

 

1/29/18- Reported by  Jim Stroede Guide Service

Ice fishing around Washburn County has been good this week.  Plenty of crappies and bluegills are biting on many area lakes.  Small ice jigs tipped with wax worms or soft plastics are producing action typically near bottom, in 10 to 16 feet of water, depending on the lake.Also of interest is the bass and northern pike bite.  These fish have really been aggressive lately.  Most folks are using tip ups baited with shinners, and placing them along weed edges or up on top of the flats for the best results.

 

1/22/18- 12/28/17- Reported by AAA Sports

What a great weekend it was to be outdoors. The Boy Scouts had their funday on Sunday on Spooner Lake which was a big success. Don't forget we host a monthly fishing contest! The winner for the largest northern, bass, crappie, perch, bluegill will get a $10.00 in store credit. Give us a call if you have any other questions about this contest!

1/22/18- Reported by Shell Lake Marine

Fishing has turned a corner for the better with this warmer weather but still not great. Smaller lakes have been recording better catches with decent northern and panfish bites. Walleyes are still extremely light even on normally productive ground.

 12/21/17 - Reported by Long Lake Bait, Tackle & C-Store

"Just coming off our 1st week of freezing temps, Long Lake is finally making ice! Remember it is still 1st and is inconsistent! The North End is reporting anywhere from 2" to 6", the South End is reporting anywhere from 2" to 8". Fishing is off to a great start! So far the best fishing time is in the late afternoon into the early evening. Most species are stacked at anywhere from 12' to 20' with the larger fish on the top layer in 20' to 0' of water. Some of the Crappie caught have eben around 10" to 15". There are also reports of bluegill and perch being caught. Fishermen have had some nice Northerns pulled through the ice, catches around 25" to 28" plus! Also some pretty nice Walleye caught 20" to 27"! Fishing folk have been having the best luck with tip-ups for the Walleye & Northern using shiners and suckers. Crappie and other panfish seem to be liking waxies and spikes righ tnow. Enjoy the fishing and be safe!"

12/28/17- Reported by AAA Sports

"This cold weather has really made some great ice. We are happy that we did not get the snowfall that was predicted this past week so the ice had a chance to deepen. Anglers have been out on most of the local lakes; snowmobiles & 4-wheelers are actively being used and some small shacks are starting to pop up on the lakes." Waxies seem to be doing the trick when it comes to jigging for panfish, mostly crappies & perch. The last week of archery season is quickly approaching, January 7, 2018 and there have been successful trappers so far. 

12/21/17 - Reported by Long Lake Bait, Tackle & C-Store

As of this morning, very inconsistent, as it is 1st ice, the Narrows Landing and Lucy's Bay are reporting in anywhere from 1-2", no one venturing out too far off the landing. Landing off Rockford road reporting in at 2"-4", the Z Bar 2-5". Woody's and Lincolnwood reporting in around 3 1/2" We have had mild temps making the snow that was on top now slush. Hoping the cold temps on the way will help us along and the snow misses us to get more consistent good ice going. However, the fishing is picking up, reports of nice sized Walleye and Northern. Crappie are starting and some Bluegill and Perch.

12/19/17 - Reported by Washburn County Tourism

Fishing weeds seems to be the common factor when catching fish this time of year around the Washburn County area lakes. There have been quite a few nice bass pulled through the ice as well as pike and after dark walleyes. When out on the ice still be using lots of caution as there are still some slushy, soft spots. For the most part there seems to be 3 to 7 inches of ice.

The lucky fishermen have been using shinners on tip-ups as well as jigging for crappies. Kyle Tyree let us know that he was jigging with a black jig that had a black plastic tail and was able to pull some fish through the ice with it. In the 12 feet of water areas fish were staying close to bottom. 

12/18/17 - Reported by Jim Stroede Guide Service

Although some people have been getting out on the ice here in Washburn County this week the conditions are still varied from lake to lake as far as safe ice is considered.  Always error on the side of caution, stay safe and follow other people's tracks on the ice.  Those who are fishing have been catching some pike and bass during the day, and a few walleyes after dark.  Tip ups with shinners are working well right now.  Fish shallow weeds with the best ice cover possible if you head out.
Good luck and good fishing!

12/4/17 - Reported by Washburn County Tourism

We heard from  Barb at AAA Sports over the weekend and she told us that Spooner Lake has 4-6" of ice near the Mann Road landing. Definitely only good for walking on at this point. Other lakes reporting good ice include Dilly, Whalen and Cable.The rain today is good, even if we don't get a lot of snow. So be hoping for COLD weather to give us even more of an ice base.

On the hunting side of things...The hunting season was pretty successful. Everyone in Barb’s hunting gang got a deer; two of which were really nice 8 pointers. But there were a lot of hunters who said they never saw a deer all season. “We are currently in the muzzleloading season that started last week and goes through this Wednesday, December 6th. Then it's the statewide antlerless hunt from Thursday to Sunday.  Archery/crossbow continues through January 7th.”

 For those who are looking for other hunting forms, beaver trapping is open through April 30, 2018 and fox & beaver trapping is open through February 15, 2018.

“We are still in a holding pattern here in between open water and ice fishing here in Washburn County,” says Jim Stroede of Jim Stroede Fishing Guide Service  The good news is that the weather forecast is for colder temperatures the next couple weeks. That should lock up area lakes once and for all, providing ice fishing opportunities all across the area.

11/30/17 - Reported by Washburn County Tourism

According to the Wisconsin DNR, another Wisconsin nine-day gun deer season is in the books. There was a slight increase in the statewide buck harvest, with 98,364 hunters fortunate in their quest of the antlered deer. Northern counties showed the most significant upsurge in both buck and antlerless harvest. Overall, preliminary figures show that 195,738 deer were registered down slightly from the 197,262 registered in 2016.

We wish the hunters good luck who are trying their luck this muzzleloader season and during the four-day doe season following. Share your photos with us by using #WashburnCounty #HuntWashburnCounty.

11/16/17 - Reported by Washburn County Tourism

Temperatures are trending up this week. The forecast is calling for temperatures in the mid to high 30’s during the day, with no major drops in the evening hours.  Towards the end of the week, there will be a chance for snow showers.

The Wisconsin DNR reports that the white-tailed deer rut is on and going strong, with many deer moving through the day. Harvest for the archery season is progressing and updated harvest numbers can be found on the DNR website. The traditional nine-day gun deer season is now just a little over a week away, so if you haven't sighted in your firearms yet time is running short. Check the DNR website for shooting ranges and for additional information about the upcoming season.

There's not much to report on this week, says Jim Stroede of Jim Stroede Fishing Guide Service. Ice is covering all but the biggest lakes in Washburn County. The trouble is it's not much for walking on, yet enough to block boat traffic. “Some brave souls are trying their hand at ice fishing for a few bluegills and crappies, but most of us are waiting for good solid ice before venturing out.”

With those few brave souls out fishing the very early ice, there have been reports of some beautiful crappies being pulled through the ice. As for the hunting side of things, Barb from AAA Sports says there have been lots of reports of nice buck being harvested by archers in the area.

11/6/17- Reported by AAA Sports

Well the weekend started out with some serious Muskie fishing people coming in. Tthey were dressed for the arctic! Not sure how well they did,  but they ordered more suckers for this weekend. Trapping season is underway: Beaver, mink, muskrat, raccoons, fox  and coyote. We've taken a lot of deer hides, so there has been a lot of successful hunters out there. There are still antlerless tags available in Washburn and Barron Counties.

 

11/6/2017- Reported by Jim Stroede Guide Service

The end of the open water season is approaching. Lakes in Washburn County are cooling at a fast rate.  A few small lakes have had their first skimming of ice in recent days.  Muskies are still biting fairly well. We've been catching them on live suckers and jigging most often. However as it gets colder, the trolling option will become the only way to fish effectively.  I haven't been out for walleyes in a month, but have heard of some recent success out on the bigger lakes using large minnows. Good luck and good fishing.