Outdoor Report: Longer days means more time to enjoy the outdoors
This week moves toward the summer solstice and the days with the most daylight of the entire year. Those long days bring more sun and that brings more accumulated heat. Lake temperatures are now pleasant for swimming and boating and warm days make for perfect camping and picnic times. Summer draws near and we are finally making up for the seemingly endless winter and cool spring.
All in all, we’re into the great summer season in the Northwoods and this year, after the miserable months we’ve just left behind, summer is very welcome.
With the warm weather has come a huge mosquito population. Good repellants are a “must have” for any outdoor activity and woe be to those who venture out without using some. Having noted that, there has been chatter in the past days that the mosquitoes may have hit their peak population and are now tapering off. If so, good news for all.
Fishing has been more consistent as water temperatures moderate. Walleyes have continued their “hot one day, cool the next” pattern. Overall they are now moving into slightly deeper water, looking for emerging green weed cover. On sunny days they’ll head for shadowy cover. Minnows are usually the best bet but we are seeing some action on leeches and crawlers. That will continue in the next weeks until by late June or early July it will be all crawlers and leeches.
The panfish bite is somewhat scattered with some crappies still in the shallows (but more and more rare) as well as bluegills. It does vary by lake but overall has been steady.
Panfish in the shallows often attract large predators, muskies and northerns, and action on those has been good to very good. Big fish are looking for big meals now and this time of the year the shallows are often very productive. We’re hearing of some good sized muskies moving pretty aggressively this week and they’re usually looking for a larger meal. With water temps rising the very slow retrieve needed two weeks ago can now be varied. This week should be a good one for musky action.
Bass have been strong but have shown some sign of tapering off this week (more with smallies than largemouth).
Weather forecasts for the upcoming week look very good and conditions should be about perfect to get outside.
The Outdoor Report is provided by the staff of Mel’s Trading Post in downtown Rhinelander.