Panfish also starting to bite
IRON MOUNTAIN - With ice fishing in full swing, northern pike fishermen reported the best success this week.
"There's been some real nice northern," said Tom Bean of Crystal Bait in Crystal Falls. "Lot of walleye being caught right now. Some panfish were hitting, with guys getting some perch."
Bob Kennard at Channing's Midtown Bait and Tackle recommended southern Marquette County lakes for good action.
"Witch Lake and Squaw Lake were doing good," he said. "Gene's Pond is another doing well right now. Guys were catching some walleye and pike out of Way Dam along with a few big perch."
Patti Teske at Florence Sport and Bait also said anglers were getting some real nice northern.
"Panfish were starting to bite pretty good," she added. "Only a few reports came in on walleye. Guys were using minnows for those."
Just north of Iron Mountain, John Grier's Whispering Pines Outpost, very busy this week, mentioned some nice walleye being caught along with a lot of northern. Shiners and suckers were top choices for bait.
Bluegill and perch were also biting for those fishing wax worms.
A 30-inch northern was pulled out of Lake Antoine, according to Dean Lindblom at Country Bait and Tackle in Iron Mountain.
"They've been catching crappie and perch out there too," he said. "Crappie and northern were hitting at Cowboy Lake. Guys were also having success at Lake Mary and the mine ponds."
Don Ciochetto at The Sport Shop in Iron River reported anglers doing well on northern, but not so much on walleye.
Spring turkey applications are now on sale for Michigan hunters.
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources reported that snowmobile trails are open in about a dozen northern counties, with conditions ranging from very good in Iron and Vilas counties, to good in Oneida, to only fair in Lincoln County.
Ice depths now range from 7 to 12 inches across much of northern Wisconsin, with less on flowages. Some ice anglers have begun to take recreational vehicles and even some trucks on to frozen water, but wardens recommend against it. One truck went through the ice this week.
Fishing reports in Wisconsin have been mixed, with some good action for northern pike and panfish, but slower action for walleye.
Michigan DNR reported the following fishing conditions in the Upper Peninsula:
Little Bay De Noc: Anglers are fishing north of Gladstone only as there is little to no ice south of Gladstone. Walleye action was best just before dark along the north end of the bay however a few fish were still caught during midday. Jigging with stick baits produced the best results.
Big Manistique Lake: Has ice however anglers need to use caution because recent snow has created slush. Walleye fishing was fair with fish caught by those jigging minnows or by those using tip-ups with minnows. South Manistique Lake was also producing a few walleye and perch just off Curtis.