Canoes and kayaks, jet skis and pontoon boats, all manner of watercraft put aside last weekend in weather seemingly better suited for arks. All outdoor pursuits were put on hold as a series of storms blotted the weather radar with orange and yellow and delivered up rainfalls that at times were near unmanageable. And in the aftermath it seems we were fortunate; the really big weather went more to the north where they will be dealing with the impact for a long time.
As such the weekend was mostly a washout. This week brings stable weather, moderate temperatures and a return to normalcy for the area. And as we draw down on the last days of June we should have a very nice set of days for anything out of doors.
The Summer Solstice June 21 marks the tipping point in the season with the longest hours of daylight for the entire year coming this week. Best to take advantage of them!
All water sports are now in prime time. Canoes and kayaks and stand up paddleboards, pontoon boats and ski boats, all watercraft now are in the best time of the year for using the northern waters. This week, and not too far off, the early days of July, will find perfect conditions.
Fishing should rebound after last weekend. Fish do not do well with active weather patterns and last week, even if people were on the water, would have been a bust if for no other reason than the rapidly moving fronts. This week will be better.
By now all spawning activity for fish is past; fish now move into more predicable summer patterns. For walleyes, that means fish will locate in weedy areas, 10 feet to 20 feet deep. Jigs with leeches or crawlers or good artificials will do the trick. Walleyes should be active with evening hours the best time.
Muskies should be drifting out to deeper waters after spending the past weeks cursing the shallows. Surface lures will be productive as will more traditional deeper running lures. Musky fishing can be very good under heavy daytime cloud cover and we may have that later this week.
Panfish have all moved into mid-depths as have bass. Use small jigs for panfish and deeper running lures, Rapalas and the like, for bass.
With the heavy rains standing water is again an issue and that, spurred by warm weather, can make mosquitoes a problem. Anyone heading outside should use common sense and carry a good insect repellant as well as sunscreen and, on hot days, extra liquids.
But it’s summertime in the Northwoods and the week ahead looks good for all.
The Outdoor Report is provided by the staff of Mel’s Trading Post, downtown Rhinelander, where a variety of outdoor products is available.