End of summer looms, limits outdoor activities
The common theme of conversations of late: Where has summer gone? The common lament: Summer went so fast this year. The calendar marks the end of summer: September 23. Nobody buys into that. Summer, in everyone’s mind, ends, at the latest, on Labor Day and Labor Day now looms large, closer every passing day. Summer, on any terms, is drawing down and with it the end of summer activities in the out-of-doors.
Now, granted, the past two years have seen balmy temperatures run into October, unseasonal fluctuations of higher than normal temperatures and autumn has been an unexpected treasure for late season cycling and boating and picnicking and camping, all traditional summer sports. But one can’t count on that. Come September and the season changes; hunting edges out fishing, short days and cooler weather make boating and riding less than desirable. One can’t bank on weather once September comes.
Now, in the waning days of summer we deal with the lingering heat which has kept lake water very nice for swimming and boating, not quite as favorable for angling (no surprise there; August is never a banner month for fishing). We will still have good weather; summer activities are not over and done with. But one must always be aware that the good days of summer are now limited.
The past few weeks have seen good weather, warm and dry (too dry for gardeners) and pleasant. But the days of heat have slowed fishing success noticeably of late. All fish have taken to deeper, darker, cooler water and none have fed voraciously in the past days. Walleyes will still take jig/crawler combinations but they are so tight to thick weeds that it is difficult to find the precise spot to drop the lure; miss it by a few feet and you’ll hang up in weeds. Thus walleye success has been spotty at best.
Muskies also have drifted into the depths on most lakes and have been very slow. Bass remain the bright spot, holding to deep water on most lakes and seeking out fast-moving current on rivers. But action there has been steady. Crappies, in deep water, have also been decent on some days. The best that can be said of fishing is that better days lie ahead.
What also lies ahead is fall hunting seasons and lest one need one more reminder hunting seasons kick off a week from this Saturday, Sept. 1. And that will certainly turn the tide of outdoor activities full-on into autumn.
The Outdoor Report is provided by the staff of Mel’s Trading Post, downtown Rhinelander, where a variety of outdoor products is available.