Fishing should pick up after rough August

AARON PETIT OF North Ridgeville, Ohio gives a thumbs-up as he holds a lake trout that he caught while fishing with Mike Norton.    Mike Norton Fishing and Hunting Adventures photo

by Hannah Tetzlaff

Big Green Lake

What’s hot: Nothing

What’s not: Cisco and white bass

Guide’s Corner:

Mike Norton’s Fishing and Hunting Adventures, www., 920- 295-3617.

Fishing on Big Green enters a down swing as low fishing populations affect the consistency of catching fish.

According to Norton, lake trout are challenging fish to catch right now due to low numbers.

“Due to the fact the lake trout numbers are low, most of the lake trout that we’re catching are 12-25 year-old fish,” he said. “It’s going to be challenging to catch lake trout consistently, but they’re large fish, and if you have enough patience and perseverance, you can have some good days.”

He noted recently he and his anglers had such a day, catching a few lake trout and even cisco.

Though the numbers are low, lake trout may still be baited, hooked, and reeled in.

“We’re still trolling the deep water for the lake trout,” Norton said. “We’re catching them in a 100 to 150 feet of water and catching them down near bottom. We’re using a cowbell rig with ether a Sutton Spoon or minnow behind.”

Norton added he does most of his fishing from the city of Green Lake up to the big bar and some occasional fishing in Norwegian Bay.

Other fish such as the cisco and white bass are even more difficult to find and catch.

“We’re not having any luck with white bass; white bass seemed to be in very low numbers,” Norton said. “Several of the weeds have made it difficult to run a lot of lines, so we’re basically concentrating on the lake trout. There is some indication that the cisco are coming high enough up in the water column to jig for them, but we haven’t had a lot of success with that.”

Norton suggested if someone wanted to get out early in the morning and look for massive schools of cisco, then they could vertically jig for them and get some nice cisco.

He advises using a white Swedish Pimple No. 7, and if the schools are as high as 75 feet, then it indicates that they can catch a few.

Joel Baranowski, North Bay Sport and Liquor, 294-6462

Baranowski also considers fishing to have been difficult this August, but he believes it will pick up as September progresses.

“I wouldn’t say it’s been a great fishing month; I would say it was pretty tough,” he said.

He noted August had been one of the slowest in comparison to past years and attributes it mostly to hot weather and no shortage of forage, especially with numerous minnows in the lake.

Though the fishing was tricky last month, the guide foresees improvement.

“The bluegills should start coming in to the weeds with the cool nights, [smallmouth bass] should start picking up a bit because they’ll start feeding the fall and the northern [pike] are still going to be deep,” Baranowski said. “… Perch should start to pick up in the fall, there should be nice-sized fish in the shallows and then the lake trout usually pick up in September right before it closes.”

Little Green Lake

What’s hot: Largemouth bass and bluegills

What’s not: Crappies and perch

Guide’s Corner:

Todd Schulz, Landing on Little Green Lake, 920-398-2620.

Little Green has witnessed low fishing populations as well, which has affected some of the fishing.

Schulz noted fish like crappies and perch are low in number, but expects more in the future.

“Crappies have been pretty slow all summer, but I think they’re numbers are little depleted,” he said. “They cycle a little bit and we’re on the down cycle … Perch should be really good right now, but it’s slow. I think they’ve been eaten by the walleye.”

Other than perch and crappies, fishing on Little Green has been fairly steady.

“It’s pretty much just like [it has been]; maybe [with] this little difference in weather, it will start getting better,” Schulz said.

He added anglers fishing for musky are just starting to come back out and bass fishing is probably the best action on the lake right now.

According to Schulz, the best time to catch a musky is right before a storm rolls in.

“Get out in about 10 to 12 feet of water and use a deeper diving crank bait off the weed edges … before a storm is always the best on this lake,” he said. “A couple hours before a storm, the thermometer starts to move … We’re coming into September here, so it will really start to get good then.”

He added once the hot weather passes and the water starts cooling down, the fish will become more active, meaning September is a good time to go fishing.

Fun Fish Fact:

Hammerhead sharks can live in schools of more than 500 sharks. The strongest female swims in the middle. When she is ready to mate, she shakes her head from side to side to signal the other female sharks to move away so she is the center of attention.