Although I took a little vacation up to Lake of the Woods for a few days over the Fourth to see some of my muskie friends, the lake was packed with boats when I got back. The access parking lots were full and had rigs parked out on the side of the roads on the Northwest side of the lake. At one point, I stuck my head above the water and counted 56 boats! Not all were fishing; some were just cruising around, and others were pulling tubes (not the smallmouth kind).
Johnson’s Portside reported: cover water and work the tops and edges of the mud flats early and late in the day. Or slide off the edges during mid-day. Live bait rigs and spinners are doing the trick. While there is also some evening slip bobber action in the mid-depth rocks, pike and muskie activity have primarily been on the weed lines. Smallmouth can still be found in the mid-depth rocks and on points using plastics.
The other day when the wind was blowing hard out of the south, I only saw one boat out on the flats. There had been lots of boats the day before. These diehards struggled to keep their feet in the big waves but went on to catch close to 40 fish in a 4-hour period with a double and a triple at one time! They were using slip bobbers and leeches right on top of the flat in the middle of the day. I tell ya, I was even tempted to sample one of those leeches. But sometimes, a fish has got to know his limitations!
Loose lines and tight lips, Wally