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'Fishing Fever' in the Northland as Wisconsin Opener is Saturday

Eyewitness Sports
May 03, 2017 10:56 PM

Ashland, Wisc. - We are just days away from the Wisconsin Governor's Fishing Opener in Cable and opening day in the state. But as of late, Lake Namakagon hasn't been a warmest place for anglers to open the season.

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Flashback to just a few years ago, the opener on Lake Namakagon looked more like winter.

"As of a week ago, we were strongly considering turning this fishing opener into an ice fishing opener," said WI Public Affairs Manager Kevin Harter back in 2013.

Although snow hit areas of the Northland just this week, it seems like mother nature has plans for more pleasant temperatures this weekend.

"So that's going to help a lot I think in fishing success. the cold temps may have held down some of their movement and feeding activity, but as the temperatures pick up that should as well," says WI DNR Fisheries Biologist Scott Toshner.

With the rain we've had lately, trout anglers can expect higher water levels in their favorite spots. But with last July's flood, many stream channels have drastically changed so they may be found in slight different spots. With warming temperatures rolling in, expect the bite to be good for some other fish this weekend.

"I think the walleye bite looks pretty good. I think that we're looking for pan fish in shallow water bays dark water bays as those temperatures warm up and see movement there. the crappie bite should be truly decent enough for that too," says Toshner.

There has been a lot of customer traffic at the River Rock Inn and Bait Shop in Ashland as Jim Bertheaume bounces from customer to customer.

"They're anticipating where the fish will be and they're excited for the opener," says Bertheaume

A few came to the shop looking to renew their licenses, get some supplies, but Bertheaume said he's seen more come in for bait.

"Nightcrawlers mostly right now. We just got more leeches so we'll start selling more leeches."

He expects business to continue to stay busy the rest of the week leading up to the opener set for Saturday afternoon.


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