Fishing access challenging; two indoor events today

Outdoors Report

IRON MOUNTAIN — Perch have been biting for anglers able to get on the ice, but snow and slush continues to make access difficult.

John Grier at Whispering Pines Outpost said there have been reports of snowmobiles and four-wheelers getting stuck. “We haven’t had a lot of people going out because of that,” he said.

Earlier this week, perch action was good at Lake Antoine. A 21 1/2-inch walleye still leads the monthly contest at Whispering Pines.

For perch, Fay Whisler of Whisler Outdoors in Florence, Wis., recommends wonder bread jigs tipped with small minnows or waxworms.

Michigan anglers are reminded that current fishing licenses are valid through March 31. However, new licenses can be purchased as soon as March 1. Wisconsin licenses expire March 30.

There have been a few fishermen out on northern lakes enjoying limited success for walleye, crappie and perch, according to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

Indoor events today include the Boundary Waters Musky Club’s annual Expo from noon to 5 p.m. in the Antoine Banquet Room at Recreation Lanes in Iron Mountain. Family Baptist Church of Kingsford will host its annual Sportsman’s Seminar and Supper beginning at 3 p.m. today in the Iron Mountain Central Gym and Cafeteria. There is no admission fee for either event.

The Michigan DNR reported the following Upper Peninsula activity:

Little Bay De Noc: Heavy snowfall made travel on the ice very difficult. Under the deep snow is a foot or more of slush in the low areas. Those venturing off the trail were getting stuck so be warned if you plan to fish the low traveled areas. Best walleye areas were on the south side of the Escanaba River using tip-ups or jigging rapalas in 28 to 40 feet. This was also a good area for big northern pike. The other walleye area was near Gladstone and pushing toward the east bank using the same in 25 to 35 feet. Perch catches were spotty with most anglers targeting the Butler Island area in five to 10 feet with minnows and wigglers. Many were fishing much shallower than the weeks before mainly because of access. Whitefish anglers reported fair catches off Sand Point with minnows or spawn in 70 to 80 feet.

Munising: Deep snow one to two feet or more in areas has made travel on the ice difficult. Shoreline areas seem to have the most slush. The ice in Trout Bay was very “iffy” and had areas with pack ice. Catch rates were slow with only a couple coho and splake taken. Whitefish were caught near Powell Point, but many were small. Perch anglers had some luck however the fish were small. Lake trout were caught near White Rocks and Wood Island Reef. No reports on smelt but anglers are getting two to three burbot per trip.