What a holiday week we had……Brutally hot conditions and a surprisingly hot Lake Trout bite made for a tremendous week of fishing. We had all three boats out in full force and we were faced with five straight days of hot humid weather and light winds. What a treat?! Well, some may say so but with the lake like “a sheet of glass” as they say, you never know just how the fish are going to bite. I’m going to take you through the week and talk a bit about how we react to these conditions and how these fish tend to behave. If abnormal weather affects the way we feel you better believe it affects the fish to some degree as well.
What is the first thing I think of when we water temps spike ten degrees in a week and the lake is flat as glass?! Go deep or go home! These guys like cool water and with no wave action to break up the suns beaming rays they have no where else to go but down. We knew deeper areas of refuge were going to be the best bet for action and we were able to connect on a few big “mud donkeys” that were hunkered down in the mud, laying low and staying cool. Presentations were slowed down a bit and we are constantly making adjustments day to day to compensate for slight changes in weather. It may be a cold front or a just a long consistent seasonable weather pattern that usually keeps the fish feeding steadily. No matter what the case may be you need to know how to react to get the most out of your day. Controlling speed, down or up-sizing presentations, changing colors, adjusting leader lengths and targeting different areas in the water column are all variables to be considered every day you hit the water.
I love a long consistent front personally. It tends to set up a pattern and will hold true until something changes dramatically again. This week was a textbook warm spell that lasted about five days and had the fish doing pretty much the same thing and biting well throughout that period. We found an excellent bottom bite on day one and put some big numbers of nice Lakers in the net all week. The fish were inhaling the baits as they typically do on a big feed and in many instances the baits were completely engulfed, unlike many tough days when you miss a lot of fish or they come up with one prong just keeping them hooked. This is a good indicator to go ahead and select some larger baits that may work in your favor to entice a true giant. A ghost, an ancient relic of the past that may be actively feeding only during this short period of time!
OK, so we didn’t catch anything that big last week but we did get some big ones! During this magical window you can up-size the offering and usually connect with some quality fish. Work your bigger baits at the right speed and it can be a great time of year for numbers of fish and size. We found fish to be schooled but not too tightly and the larger fish were scattered in small pods across the flats in no particular fashion. Another hot weather bottom pattern that seems to hold true to conditions like these is no apparent activity on the fish finder. These fish show up out of nowhere it seems and I attribute that to inactive fish laying very close to bottom. This can be frustrating as you may have trouble finding them with no “hooks” showing up on sonar to reassure you that you’re digging in the right spot. When you do hit fish location should be noted carefully.
Pay close attention to changes in bottom composition! Mud transitioning to sand or rock can hold fish that are loafing as they are relating to the change in structure. You can easily detect these subtle changes by watching the bands of color change on your sonar unit as you are trolling. Take note of these areas and you will notice patterns where fish tend to concentrate, when at first glance it may seem to have little relevance to anything.
Thanks for reading anglers we will see you on water, tight lines!