Summer in northern Wisconsin has arrived, along with a bumper crop of mosquitoes and wood ticks. This past week we enjoyed warm temperatures, relatively calm winds and high humidity. Several evenings during the past weeks, as the sun went down, the pesky mosquitoes made fishing a challenge. Once darkness took over, it seemed as though they left the area.
Anglers have noticed that frequently the fish bite best as the sun goes down or as the sun rises at dawn. We have noticed further that when fishing many of the lakes in the area with stained water, once the sun sets at a level where it shines through the tree tops, fishing action seems to stop. I cannot explain why that happens, but we have noticed this over the years.
Last weekend the Headwaters Chapter of Muskies Inc. held their annual Spring Musky Tournament in the Eagle River area. As usual, several teams caught more than one musky. During that same time, the Esox Musky University Instructional Program in the St. Germain area was held.
Those of us who acted as instructors found that the muskies were not very active. I enjoy participating in that activity each spring.
For the past several weeks, the crappies received the majority of attention from many area anglers. Last weekend, as we pulled into the resort on Big St. Germain Lake, we noticed that the parking lots at each of the boat landings were jammed with vehicles and empty boat trailers. Most of the anglers we were able to see were anchored and fishing for crappies.
The crappies had been in relatively shallow water to spawn. Now, as the water in our lakes has warmed beyond the 60 degree mark, they have completed the spawning process and returned to deeper water. Some crappies will hang out near cribs in lakes. Other crappies will school up under schools of baitfish. Since the bag limits for walleyes have become so restrictive, numerous anglers have concentrated on crappies.
This weekend marks the 35th annual Curt Ebert Boom Lake Musky Tournament. Anglers begin fishing Saturday at 7 a.m. and fish until 5 p.m. They will return to the water Sunday from 6 a.m. until noon.
This is a fun tournament with quite a few local anglers participating. Curt Ebert and Lee Bastian have fished this tournament from the first time it was held.
Unfortunately, Curt has passed away but his son, Mark, has taken Curt’s place and has finished in the money most of the years it has been held. The awards will be handed out at the Boom Lake boat landing about noon on Sunday.
I feel fortunate because our son, Craig, and his son, Jack, will be joining me in my boat for the weekend. This will be the second time that Jack has fished the Boom Lake event.
We have recently seen a few spotted fawns as their mothers escort them away from potential harm and we have heard from quite a few area persons that they have been seeing bears in and around their homes. The best advice one can give is to take food sources inside for the evening and night hours, including bird feeders.
Whatever you enjoy doing outdoors, now is the time to enjoy our part of the state. If you are bothered by bugs, you may want to look into clothing that has bug repellant in the fabric from which the garment is constructed.
Longtime Northwoods outdoors personality Roger Sabota writes a bi-monthly column for the Star Journal.