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Thread: Muskie Report

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Three Lakes, WI

    Default Muskie Report

    It has been a long…long time since my last fishing report. The reasons are many but as my friends and I like to say, “things just escalated!” It didn’t matter if I just finished fishing 10 hours on the water with clients…I had to go out myself and pound it for at least 4 more hours. I gave into my muskie addiction and this led to many nights of little sleep, lots of Jack’s pizzas and plenty of coffee. The excitement of watching a client set the hooks into a good fish or tying into one myself is what keeps me going. It is the anticipation of that “feeling” when the line tightens up on a muskie - it is one of the best feelings in the world! Some people have been wondering where I have gone…since early July I have been fishing a lot at night - even more than in previous seasons - and the action has been tremendous. No boat traffic or fishing pressure to deal with and some lucky customers and I have bagged some big fish on these night trips.

    The pattern has been consistent:

    Fishing shallow (and I mean very shallow) has been producing muskies consistently for my clients and I since opening weekend. I’m talking 3-7 feet of water up into the shallow sections of flats. Even during the hot muggy days in July, when water surface temps reached over 85 degrees, this shallow water bite was still producing and has also put 6 tigers in the boat this year. Spinnerbaits and single-hook inline spinners and bucktails have been producing very consistently. The topwater bite has just been OK for me this season. The GO-TO has been any lure with a spinning blade. Black/silver, black/orange and silver/silver blade and hair combinations have been working best for colors.

    The deep bite:

    Although I have concentrated on fishing shallow I have taken some very nice fish over open water - suspended in relation to some type of underwater structure (wood, cribs, rocks, etc). Jigging plastics and working deep diving crankbaits over this open water structure is been producing well. I have also taken some nice fish jigging a foot or two right off the bottom with lures like the Bondy Bait. Be prepared to cut and retie often and have a lure retriever with you because if you are getting your lures where the active fish are holding - you will get snagged or at least “hit” bottom often. It can be difficult to distinguish between a crib, log and muskie in the beginning, but the trick is to not set the hooks into this wood-type structure when you detect your lure has come into contact with it. Sometimes when your bull dawg or jig is initially sinking into or sliding into one of these snags the sensation can feel like a fish “sucked it in.” Again, instead of setting the hook just move your boat around 180 degrees and pull the bait out opposite the direction is was being retrieved. Most of the time you will get them back. Go deep when the shallow bite seems slow.

    Smallmouth bass:

    The smallie action has been consistent and excellent all throughout July and August. A 1/16th oz jig with a nice leech worked close to the bottom has been working well. The slip-bobber is an absolute MUST have when going after smallies and walleye at this time of the year. Slip-bobbers can really save the day when the action is slow on the more aggressive presentations. Focus on the deeper flats adjacent to the bars for the best action during the day or evening.

    I mentioned in a post a long time ago to look out for fishing footage to come - I have shot a TON of really sweet walleye and smallmouth bass segments with some great underwater fighting/action scenes…..but editing and putting it together has been much more difficult than I initially thought - especially during the peak months. Eventually I will have this stuff ready and I hope you will enjoy it as much as I have. The muskie filming has been a learning experience and difficult to do on a low budget - battery life and SD card memory issues - but I’m not giving up on shooting some quality scenes. Lots of good fishing to come as we enter this next phase of the season!

    Good luck and fish hard!


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    Chas Martin
    Musky Mastery Guide Service
    Web Site: http://www.muskymasteryguideservice.com

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