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River Rat
Wisconsin River muskies
4/27/2010 1:38:05 PM
Well, this is it. The musky season begins on Saturday. Kinda snuck up on me this year- caught my first two muskies on walleye jigs in the beginning of March then no action from the 'skis since. I watched our highlight film from last year three times this week in anticipation. This morning gave me lots of hope for the early opener- 2 muskies in the boat on walleye jigs and unbelievably had a 50 incher come snap a 16 inch walleye on my stringer. That's a good sign- so i'm taking a half day off work Monday. No matter how bad my muskie addiction gets, i'll always be on the trout stream opening weekend. 100 muskies this year? I am going to keep that goal in the back of my mind this time around and wait until after our summer slump to see where i'm at. Three years ago there was no slump, two years ago it was July, last year it was August. It won't help that i'm out of town for 8 weeks of the summer for work, but the musky fishing will happen.

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8/13/2009 1:27:26 PM
Muskies really do suck. I'm in the middle of the best year yet of muskie fishing and am currently riding the longest fishless streak i've ever had during muskie season. This morning, fished hard for a few hours then switched to walleye cranks after not seeing any muskies. Had a big muskie soak the three of us at boatside when it hit my walleye crank right in front of all of us and get away. That was the first fish i'd seen in weeks, things need to change if 100 fish is going to happen this year!

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7/12/2009 10:04:35 PM
numbers 49, 50, and 51 this evening. Going for it this year, and things are cooking, but what's with all the small fish lately? 16 fish in a row without a 40 incher, that's never happened before. Oh well, i'm sure thankful for them all! There are no "practice" muskies, but i am still waiting for the first 50 of the year.

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7/1/2009 12:33:28 PM
Getting some figures out on hundreds of WI river muskies by month.
May- avg length is 36.2 inches with 28.5% of fish over 40 inches.
June- avg length is 35.6 inches with 20.9% of fish over 40 inches
July- avg length is 34.5 inches with 12% of fish over 40 inches
August- avg length is 35.7 inches with 15.4% of fish over 40 inches
September- avg length is 38.2 inches with 39% of fish over 40 inches
October- avg length is 38.4 inches with 33.3% of fish over 40 inches
November- avg length 40 inches with almost 50% of fish over 40 inches.

overall avg length 36.4 inches, with 26.2% of all fish over 40 inches.

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6/2/2009 10:52:54 AM
This morning was pretty awesome. In an hour and a half got 6 follows, 2 missed hits and 3 in the frabill. It was a good time, and the count is at 19 muskies for the year, on the way to triple digits this time, just to say we did it. Will have a few first timers get muskies by the end of June i hope. Those are the best, aren't they? It should be a good season, after i get home June 12th it's on!

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2/2/2009 11:01:22 AM
Is it May yet?? It's back to donating plasma in order to pay for more muskie fishing stuff. I was blessed this past year to bring in enough cash from guiding to pay off the boat and all the stuff i "had" to buy. Now having an extra $60/week to buy gear is dangerous, because it's never quite enough. Got some more llungen tails, dawgs, eels, jigs, and leader making stuff this past week.
Got the new bag on the net, got 2 new rods, now the big thing is fixing the trolling motor. Days like today i'm sure glad we have something to do, or I would begin to think that 41 inches of ice will never go away... Anyone want to trade a tallywacker for a jake?

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1/28/2009 2:32:36 PM
I don't think anyon reads these, but at least they are a bit of a pacifier when i don't have money to spend for muskie equipment.
Ended the year with 94 muskies in the boat and 8 musky virgins getting their first fish. The worst was that in the process of getting these guys their first muskies, we lost over 20. Why are these things so hard to catch? Dang. Still, it was worth it to see lots of smiles. I'll take 8 newbs with fish over the first triple digit year any day. Next year will be triple digits.
6/26/2008 7:10:24 AM
21 muskies this year for Bob and I. This is going to be a good year, and i've barely begun to fish! Had a TANK of a muskie show herself today, one of those where i have to sit down for a while b/c my knees were shaking too bad. I want that fish; can anyone say "new moon on Wednesday???"
6/5/2008 11:43:12 AM
Boy, did we find a pile of muskies. It's barely June and bob and i have 14 muskies in the boat, and 4 first muskies for people. I'm well on my way to 15 for the year! I can't believe it! Musky fishing is not supposed to be this easy. Only one trip with a first timer saw us empty handed, though it took several trips without fish myself before we found a few. Congrats to Robert, Ben, Kyle, and TJ on their first ever fish! Twitch baits and jigs, short casts to structure. Haven't found them in weeds, rocks, or open water yet. I think the water is still too cold.

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5/11/2008 3:13:26 PM
First week of musky season is over, and it was great. It felt so good to be on the water, even if i did break 2 rods and one reel on the opener. Things got off to a slow start, fishing all day saturday and sunday with budktails, spinnerbaits, and gliders, and only seeing one tiny fish right at the end of sunday. BUT thursday morning saw 2 fish from shore-34, 36, in about 20 minutes. Also got to see a few spawners cruising. Then Friday morning came a nice chunky 39 from the canoe. 4 fish week- can't complain about that. I feel like we may have to wait a month before those 4 fish days come, but i think we're off to a good start. What's my goal for the year? I'm staying with 15 first muskies for other people, my own fish will come.

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4/30/2008 10:31:52 PM
Got to fish off shore for walleyes this evening. caught some nice 'eyes, and, of course, a muskie hit my last minnow on the floating jig head. Didn't make it to shore, but had the mid-thirty inch fish on for a while. JUST A FEW MORE DAYS!!!!!!!!!!

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4/12/2008 2:11:29 PM
More rain and snow. Good news is there's a huge puddle in my back yard that allowed me to run my new reels and a few topwaters in it this morning. Prop baits go through a thin layer of ice; walk the dog baits don't. I'm so bored, how much longer?

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4/8/2008 9:29:21 PM
Well, the ice fishing is over and the river is putting up some nice walleyes. Still haven't heard of the first muskie in the area, but every year a few are caught in April on walleye jigs. I'm content to wait it out for a few weeks. Well, maybe i'm more impatient than it seems, but the open water 'eyes are a great way to pass the time.

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3/24/2008 3:21:32 PM
This is the first year my wife will be fishing. I can catch walleyes and smallmouth and catfish one after another, but i'm wondering if anyone has any ideas for getting her hooked on muskies? Maybe it will take a while. Last fall she came for muskies with me once. She netted a 40 incher for me at dusk and when i started heading back in, she commented "just ONE?" I can't impress her, but maybe when she gets one of her own things will be different. Any ideas? Thanks in advance!
3/9/2008 3:40:38 PM
I'm wondering if many people have strong feelings about the color of the muskies they catch. I'm sure most would say any muskie is a good one to catch, but do you think some color phases are awesome while others are ugly? I fish central WI, and my absolute favorite colors on a muskie are a bronze colored clear phase. I've had people say that they think those fish are ugly, but i love them. Do you care what colors your muskie has? Do people fish just for spots, or just for barred? Obviously tigers are pretty sweet, but i'm talking about true muskies. What do you think?
2/25/2008 10:46:57 PM
Maybe this addiction is worse than i thought. I got out for some walleyes, and spent the whole time thinking about muskies and wondering if there was some way to watch Musky Madness on an Aqua-Vu. I even caught quite a few 'eyes, but it wasn't satisfying. I'm sure they taste better than a musky, anyway.

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2/23/2008 11:19:42 AM
I found great solace today in the realization that i get more hyped up about the deer hunting season than i do muskie fishing. Maybe this addiction isn't quite as bad as i thought...

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2/22/2008 9:57:40 AM
Watched the Badfish boys' "Muskie Town" last night for my date with my wife. She doesn't fish. The video was great, except i kept worrying about what she was thinking when they kept calling musky fishing an addiction. It's true, but in my house addictions are bad. I don't know how to explain it to her...any thoughts? My dream is for her to get psyched about muskies too, but i doubt that will happen.
My wife asked me if i thought guys went a little "over the top" when it comes to musky lures. I had to say yes, but to make matters worse my buddy told her that the way he figured it we caught 80% of our fish on 3 lures last year- jackpot, topraider, mepps musky killer. "We could get by with 1 walk the dog bait, 1 propeller bait, and 1 bucktail," he says. Thanks a lot, man.
But she is gracious, and let me drop a few hundred on a new rig two nights ago. I had to settle for the 7 foot St. Croix instead of the 8 i wanted, but it'll have to do. Man those new abu 6600C4 reels are nice. Thinking about taking a few casts with it if i can find some open water, i just have to convince Mr. DNR that i am walleye fishing with 65 pound braided line and XH triumph on an abu round reel. Won't be easy.

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2/20/2008 11:48:20 AM
We've gotten more precipitation than ever since December, so it looks like we won't have any muskie spawning this year with the fluctuating water levels. Stink. As long as all the muskies aren't washed downriver this spring we'll keep good numbers thanks to the record numbers stocked by local clubs this fall. Thanks guys!!
The past two weeks i've set 2 goals for the season because i'm so bored i have nothing to do but set goals. 1. Beat Crank and Pointer and ReefHawg to the first WI River 50 of the season, and 2. Get 15 people their first muskies ever.
I think #2 has a fighting chance, but #1 might take a miracle. 8inchcrank has caught more big 'skis here than anyone i know, and ReefHawg and caught more total fish here than anyone i know. Pointer seems to have the 50s raining down upon him, so perhaps all i can do is dream. I'll focus on getting some kids their first fish and maybe a big girl will end up in the boat. We'll have to wait and see.

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2/20/2008 11:37:19 AM
I started fishing the Wisconsin River when i was three for catfish. I've been a catfish and walleye guy my whole life because i fished the lower stretches where the sandbars and REALLY shallow water stretch as far as the eye can see. Since moving to central Wisconsin, however, the river is all rocks and dams and deep runs, and there are muskies here.
I still love catfish and walleyes (not so much smallmouth), but they've gotten too familiar and easy, so muskies are the only thing that really get me going now. Hopefully this blog will be a worthwhile endeavor to talk about fish and gear and ideas and other musings about the fish i've come to love and hate all at the same time.

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