The 2013 Season Review

For the best monthly review or full season review please use my REPORTS link and REPORTS HOME navigation section to read all the reports I have done over the last 13 years.

This past 2013 season was so different from the 2012 season. This Spring was cold and a very slow to warm up. The May action was slower than usual and the spawning process was going on most of the month of May. The large mouth bass and bluegills were the last to complete spawning just before Memorial Day. June was the start of the good casting because the water temps got into the low sixty's and the weather started to stabilize.

Most of June was good to great casting with multiple fish trips enjoyed by most clients. The muskies, pike and small mouth bass were very active and working the weed edges for a few weeks. By the end of June the trolling bite started to kick in as the game fish started to follow the bait fish out of the weeds and out on the flats. This is when I start trolling to contact as many fish as I can. Covering lots of productive water is the key to catching multiple muskies. Once I locate these areas I keep trolling them or start casting them. Either way it can be very productive and extremely fun.

This July pattern is very predictable and fun to take advantage of. July is one of the best months to catch the biggest fish in the lake. Most of my 50-inch plus muskies are taken during this transition from weeds to deep water. Multiple fish trips are more common than slow trips. There was a two week period last July where I put 47 muskies in the boat in 11 trips. The biggest was a 48-inch beast that came after dark. The trophy walleyes and small mouth were also hitting very well during this transition time from the weeds to deeper water. The flats and break lines were full of bait and game fish during this time. Multiple trolling patterns work during this transition and have worked consistently for the last ten years for me.

August was good all month for trolling and water temps stayed in the high 70's most of the month. This was perfect for action and water releases were quick and easy on the fish. I have to say "Thank You" to all my clients and other fishermen who have understood the importance of fast, low stress releases on fish during the high water temps. If the water temps get into the 80's and higher it's it's best to just quit fishing and let the fish deal with the heat and low dissolved oxygen levels with out the extra stress of being caught and released. The difference between netting and water release without using a net is huge. Believe me when I say it's much easier to just use a needle nose at boat side to release the fish rather than netting them. Becaues the fish will roll up in the net and cause way more work and stress on the fish. During this warm water fishing period the fish will be much more calm and tired as they come to the boat. Most can be released by a cutting of the hook or twist of a needle nose. Water release pictures are not as good as holding your catch but we all agree that what's best for the fish is what we should do. Water temps control almost everything in fishing if you think about it. Guides know and teach others different patterns all season long that are controlled by water temps not the calendar. So we should all understand how high water temps also control how we should handle fish during this time of the season.

September was the start of the migration of fish back to the weed lines, flats and large weed beds. By the third week in September we were having good success casting and trolling break lines and outside weed edges. Some great action was also found on the eastern end of Pewaukee Lake in the river channel areas and some isolated open areas. My bread and butter trolling action was again outstanding using three different patterns. The best part of this was if one of the patterns was not showing the action, we just moved on to the next pattern and got the action we were looking for. Knowing where the fish are coming from and where they are going just makes this easy every year. The patterns do not change much each year. The fish do the same things every year with a few variables that control how fast the patterns get established. After working this lake for over 35 years I have figured out and patterned most of the movements throughout the months on the water. September is one of those months that are the hardest to stay on the moving fish because so many variables that are involved during this month. Shorter days, falling water temps, moon phases, and wind all plays a big roll as the fish start moving back from deeper water. The weed bite starts to get much better as September ends and October starts. By the first week or two of October we are having great action casting all over the lake. The weed bite is as good as it's going to be for a few weeks then the weeds start to die off and the fish slide back deeper. November was ok at best this year for the sucker bite with good action one day and slow the next. By late November the water turned to ice and the ice fishing season started.

All in all this was a great season for most. This 2013 season was my best year for fish per hour on the water. I can't even remember how many trips I did this season where we caught 5 or more fish on a half day trip. I can remember 7 trips where we caught 6 fish in 5 hours. A few 8 and 9 fish trips stand out as best trips of this season. Biggest muskie was a 48-inch beast, biggest walleye was a 28.5-inch, biggest smallmouth was just over 22-inches, biggest largemouth bass was a 23-inch, biggest pike was a 38-incher and lots of other great memories in 2013 that I can smile about.

Due to my computer crashing early June I was not able to share the fishing reports I have always done on Pewaukee Lake. Now I am trying to get all my files and programs back working on my new computer. Since I do my web site myself without any help from anyone or service this will take some time. I am working on it every chance I can and will have it up to date by the start of the 2014 season.

I also want to give a huge "THANK YOU" to Mercury for adding me to the PRO TEAM. I purchased a 225 PRO XS motor for my 620 Ranger after my 1999 OPTI MAX got too tired and had to be replaced. 13 years and almost 1200 hours was a good run for that motor. Mercury is number one in my book because they are the most dependable motors I have ever used.