What a beautiful Fourth of July we had in northern Wisconsin this year. Temperatures were in the mid to high sixties without any rain for the entire week.
To make it even better, I had the opportunity to spend the week in our boat with our grandson, William Schroeder. Will lives in Somerset and does not get the opportunity to fish for an entire week very often. Thus far, the muskies have ignored his attempts. Fishing with him will certainly end up to be a highlight for the year.
One morning, Will and I went to Tom Cornelius’ home and fished on Lake George. As stated before, the weather was beautiful but not beautiful for fishing. We caught bluegills and perch, and Will landed a walleye that turned out to be the only walleye we had action from. Clear blue skies, calm winds and warm temperatures are comfortable for anglers, but made for tough fishing conditions.
The pursuit of fish and game are supposed to help a person relax.
Recently, there are some issues in the hunting and fishing circles of Wisconsin that cause some people extensive concern. The topic of deer hunting with a crossbow is one of those issues.
Presently hunters who have reached their 65th birthday may hunt deer in Wisconsin with a crossbow. Those hunters under 65 who have a physical problem may hunt with a crossbow if they have a statement from a medical doctor stating that they are not physically able to shoot a compound or recurve bow.
Hunters on one side of the issue want anyone who buys an archery license to be allowed to hunt deer with a crossbow.
Those on the other side of the issue do not want more hunters using crossbows. At times, this issue has become heated. Thus far, I have stayed out of the dispute.
Another issue that has drawn the attention of a large share of the musky anglers in Wisconsin has to do with motor trolling.
The governor’s office has requested that all branches of state government make an effort to simplify regulations that are under their jurisdiction.
To attempt to accomplish this, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources had recommended that anglers statewide be allowed to motor troll with three lines.
A number of anglers in Vilas and Oneida counties strongly object to this rule. Many musky anglers had asked for a rule that would allow them to control a boat with an electric motor while dragging a sucker, particularly during the fall months.
This issue has reached the governor’s desk and most anglers are waiting to see what action he will take.
I am bothered by the fact that outdoors folks are fighting among themselves. That sort of behavior has the potential to generate laws that may impede their activities. Let’s not give those who dislike hunting and fishing even a small advantage for their cause.
As the week-long fishing excursions with our grandson, Will, came to a close, he was already asking when he could return. On the last morning we were able to cast for muskies, he had a follow-up from a truly large musky. Will said that he intends to meet up with that fish again, hopefully in August.
We have noticed a large increase in boat traffic on our lakes since the beginning of July. Warm, sunny weather and the Fourth of July time period brings out the local people as well as the tourists.
Longtime Northwoods outdoors personality Roger Sabota writes a bi-monthly column for the Star Journal.