Well, it’s finally summer time, or at least the calendar says it should be, and with the harsh winter/viking apocalypse of 2013/14, the lake is taking longer than ‘normal’ to warm up. As a result, the fishing has been slow to make its way north and ports north of Milwaukee/Racine have been lacking fish with the slow warm up. Thankfully that has started to drastically improve over the past couple weeks!
This year finds team Poseidon with a new boat (new to us anyways), a Tiara 3100 open that we chose to keep in Racine until the Salmon-A-Rama is over.
You can call it ‘Lady Luck’ or Dumb A$$ Luck, but our new boat seems to have quite the good mojo to it as team Poseidon is off to a very good start this year. In the first tournament of the year, the Salmon Unlimited opener our of Racine, we took 6th place overall, 3rd place in the Southwest Salmon Series, and caught the biggest fish of the tournament (a 17.7 lb Laker)!
The second tournament of the year, the Kenosha Coho Classic, found team Poseidon taking first place overall with a total weight just shy of 95lbs.
What’s worked well this year isn’t anything out of the ordinary for us. We’ve been running our riggers down 30-80ft and wire divers our 70-120loc with flasher/fly combos, we’ve mixed a few spoons in on the leadcores. Speed at the ball for trolling has been between 1.8-2.2mph. The fish were out ‘deep’ for a couple weeks at the end of May/beginning of June, but have since started to settle into a more normal summer pattern in 65-120 fow.
The one main difference that we’ve noticed on our boat this year is that the Kings haven’t seemed to want the ‘standard’ go to white flasher with a Naughty Leprechaun or LBB. Now, I’m close to 100% positive that this will change, and there will be a time in the not so distant future where the Naughty Leprechaun will be hard to beat, but right now that has not been the case. The best fly for us by a long shot has been the Milwaukee Minnow, followed by First In’s Firefly, and Green Willy. Our best flashers with these flies have been chrome blades with some sort of UV pattern, like Black Friday, or the Salmon Flute, last weekend a chart/glow or green/glow flasher destroyed the Kings though so keep them honest. Biggest tip I can give is to keep playing with different FF combos as preferences change day to day and hour to hour with different sun/water conditions.
The fish size structure this year has been more typical of previous years, with Kings averaging between 10-15lbs and Coho in the 3-6lb range. The bait has been thick this year, and if anyone doubts this, they can just take a boat ride and see all the dead alewives floating on the surface. Hopefully with this much bait there should be some really good sized fish later this year but only time will tell. I know of a few 20-25lb fish caught in Milwaukee already this year, and it appears the further you go north on the lake the larger the Kings. This weekend will find us at North Point Marina near Winthrop Harbor fishing the 10th annual Geoffrey Morris Tournament and we’ll see if we can keep our hot streak rolling!
Good luck on the water and tight lines!