Looks like all the ice is off the lake, which means its about time to drop the boat in and chase some fish around! Since the ice went, most people have been fishing bridges and shorelines. Look to target areas with moving water (bridges, culverts, and channels). Many different presentations can be used in this time of the year to catch fish successfully. Pitching plastics can be a very successful method of catching Walleyes and Pike in the shallow areas. Live bait rigging is also another method to help produce fish. When targeting Walleyes, try using a Lindy Rig with a leech or crawler working just off the bottom or slip bobber with bait suspended a foot off the bottom. A jig head with a minnow attached being slowly pulled across the bottom is a great technique for the Walleyes as well. For Pike, look to use a bit bigger bait with a similar set up. Smelt, Herring, and Sardines are all good baits for pike.
As we start to get on the open water, make sure you start slow with these walleyes. Slip bobbers, jigging, and pitching cranks into the shallows will be key presentations for catching fish. My favorite way to catch walleyes is to pitch cranks. There are many different types of crankbaits to use for the early part of the year. Countdowns can be effective for hitting the edge of a weed line and allowing the bait to sink to the target depth before beginning the retrieval. Eskos can be great for staying above weeds that have not fully grown to top of the water column. #5 shad rap and flicker shad/minnow can be very effective for targeting an aggressive bite on these shallow dwelling fish. Finding these areas with warmer water, structure, and/or weed lines can help produce fish in the early part of year and can be successful throughout most of the summer.
With the lake levels dropping over the last year, remember to careful on your travels around the lake. Shallow areas and submerged trees can sneak up at the worst times.
If you need anything to help get yourself ready for the summer, don’t forget to stop in and check out our tackle selection. Check out our large clothing selection to get anything from swim wear and beach towels to t-shirts and sweatshirts. Along with your beach needs, we carry Yetti coolers and various cups/mugs. We also carry a selection to tubes and other pull behind equipment. We also carry boat batteries, tow/dock ropes, oil, and other boat products. Our marina can help get you rigged up and ready to get out on the water.
We plan to have our boat landing in by tomorrow afternoon, with all of our other docks soon to follow!
Have fun and be safe out there!