BRAIDWOOD OPENER: The cooling lake near Braidwood reopens to
fishing Friday. Boaters should have
salt or sand with them. Hours are
6 a.m. to sunset daily. Despite the fish kill last July, fishing looks promising, including bass. The hybrid striped bass appear to be doing well, as do the blue catfish. REMINDER: Anchoring outside the restricted area on the north end and casting in is illegal.
WISCONSIN NOTE: Gamefish season ends at midnight Sunday.
CHAIN O’LAKES AREA: Channel has had the best bluegill fishing, but Petite is another good option. Staff at Triangle reported crappie still are being caught mornings and
evenings, and walleye fishing is picking up on tip-ups or jigging.
COOLING LAKES/STRIP PITS: For Braidwood opener Friday, see top. LaSalle reopens March 15 (details to come). Heidecke reopens April 1.
DELAVAN/GENEVA LAKES, WIS.: Brian Gates of Geneva Lake Bait & Tackle said bluegills and pumpkinseeds are being caught on west end of Geneva’s library park. On Delavan, bluegills and crappie — with a few northern and walleye thrown in — are being caught, primarily on the west end.
LAKEFRONT: Ice fishermen have spotty perch and panfish. Ice in some of the harbors should hold.
MADISON LAKES, WIS.: Gene Dellinger of D&S Bait reported perch a bit tougher on Mendota, but ice
remains good. Some deep crappie off the Bible Camp and a few bluegills off Lake Farm Park on Waubesa. Some bluegills in Squaw Bay.
NORTHERN WISCONSIN: EAGLE RIVER: Chamber of Commerce reported good-to-excellent pike around remaining weeds, good panfish and fair-to-good walleye (in 12 to 35 feet off break edges or adjacent mud flats). There’s 18 to 24 inches of ice. MINOCQUA: Guide Kurt Justice of Kurt’s Island Sport Shop reported a better bite heading into the final weekend for gamefish, but snow depths have made lake travel tougher. Pike are very good, walleye, crappie and perch are good and improving and largemouth are active again.
SOUTHEAST WISCONSIN LAKEFRONT: Arden Katz reported decent trout in Milwaukee harbor (better around dawn) on 1-inch tube jigs or 2-inch Berkley Power minnows. Whitefish schools pass through; use small baits (such as Rat Finkees) on the bottom.
SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN: Tyler Harmon messaged that spawn under a bobber or drift fishing continues to take steelhead in the rivers. Jigging is taking walleye.