Color change and shortening hours of daylight mark the end of the first week of October. Warmer weather than expected continues to hold and those factors set the stage for the next week. Historically the first killing frost in this area typically comes in the third week of September. Not this year; not even close.
As we look to the weekend ahead and the week that follows a few things stand out. First off is the Youth Rifle Hunt this weekend, the 8th and 9th. This will put young hunters, under adult supervision, in the woods for an early rifle hunt for deer. A couple things are notable. First off is that all hunters except for water fowlers need to comply with blaze orange requirements (basically 50 percent or more above the waist). But other outdoor enthusiasts really should consider wearing some blaze orange when they are out and about in the woods. Foliage is still very heavy and visibility shortened due to that. Blaze stands out! Be safe!
The no-frost temps have kept lake temperatures higher than usual for this late. Lake turnover has not happened and fishing remains more hit-or-miss than normal. We did get reports of some active musky days this week with fish still going after buck tails. Walleyes are scattered and success mixed. We did hear of some very good action on smallmouth bass. Overall fishing is near change and remains variable, more so than usual for early October.
The flat duck hunting opener carried over into the past week. A poor wild rice crop and abundant water has birds scattered. Jump shooting and sneaking up on potholes has had some success but overall it has been slow.
The same can be said for upland as heavy leaf cover still dominates the landscape. Best there is things will get better. Archers have had some success but a hard frost will still be the best thing to get deer on the move.
Ticks are in high numbers and tick repellants for humans and dogs alike are really a good idea.
The Outdoor Report is provided by the staff at Mel’s Trading Post, downtown Rhinelander.