A wet weekend is in the forecast, breaking a string of mostly warm, sunny days. If that weather comes it may well bring some immediate changes to our outdoor scene. For one, a hard rain will knock down a fair number of leaves making better shooting conditions for upland hunters and archers. Rain will impact the Youth Deer Hunt this weekend. And rain and cooler temperatures will certainly impact lakes and water temperatures. So a lot is possible.
First off, the Youth Hunt. This is the most significant event this weekend, bringing hunters, as young as 10 in the Mentor Program, into the woods. It’s a great opportunity for them to get some quality hunt time in and if the rain comes it may well open up shooting areas if we get a significant leaf fall. This is a rifle season, same as the 9-Day in November. But it is important to note that any hunter (with the exception of waterfowl hunters) needs to observe the blaze orange dress requirements this weekend. That means, generally, 50 percent of clothing above the waist need be blaze orange. So, grouse and woodcock hunters as well as archers need to pay attention.
Upland hunters are seeing mixed success with shooting limited a fair amount due to heavy leaf cover. That will change this weekend as many leaves are close to falling and rain of any amount will hasten that. Woodcock have been moving in, slowly but there are some down. Grouse are there but scattered.
Fishing has been mixed as lake turnover has been completed on some lakes but not all. Musky action has actually been pretty steady with bucktails being a good choice to use and top-water lures bringing some fish, especially on dirtier water. After turnover things will be more predictable.
Walleyes and crappies are deeper now but we often see walleyes (and muskies for that matter) disperse some as water temperatures drop after some hard frosts.
Overall the next week will probably see some significant changes as fall weather comes on and conditions for much hunting and fishing improve.