I wanted to talk briefly about how to deal with the heat that we have had. This is a very touchy subject throughout the entire musky range right now. If you see 79 degree water temp or higher dont fish. Here are some things to consider before you go out fishing.......

-Early mornings are when the water temps are coolest.
-Afternoon and evenings are when the water temps are warmest.

-Lakes with less than 79 degree water temps.
-The larger lakes in the area are cooler than the smaller ones.
-DO NOT fish small lakes

-Fish have been eating baits hard with the warmer temps. Pinch the barbs on the back treble hook of all bucktails to help with the release.
-Use larger baits so the fish have less of a chance getting them deep.

-Very minimal handling should take place. Water releases are great and make for cool photos. Taking fish out of the water right now negatively impacts the health of the fish (depending on temps).
-I take one picture of a fish and it goes back.
-Measuring fish using a floating stick right now is less stressful for the fish than a traditional bumpboard.
-Do not fish alone. Another angler in your boat can help you net, unhook, and release a fish that is hooked.

-Knipex to cut hooks.
-2 pairs of long nose pliers.
-Boga style holder. I grab the bottom lip of the muskie and use it to force their mouth open.
-Jaw spreaders.
-Have all of these tools out and easily accessible.

Use your best judgement. Keep an eye on you temp gauge and talk to other anglers that are on the lake to get an accurate reading. If you think temps are too warm to fish than dont go out.