Northern bite is good to excellent, with walleye and panfish good; all in the Eagle River, Wisconsin area.
Ice conditions in the Eagle River area are good and improving. Lakes generally have 18 inches or more of ice. Travel conditions remain fair, as there is snow and slush in some areas. Trucks are going out in select areas (caution is still strongly advised), with one of our guide sources reiterating the absolute need to “know the water” before you venture out. Our best suggestion remains: Hire one of Eagle River’s excellent, licensed guides. You’ll catch fish, have a lot of fun and do so in safety.
Northern: Northern in the Eagle River area are in 10 feet of water or less in and around any remaining weeds you can find. Use a medium to large shiner or northern sucker under a tip up. All day action. Bite is good to excellent.
Walleye: Walleye in the Eagle River area are in 25 feet of water or less off of break edges. The walleye are tight to bottom. Use a medium shiner or walleye sucker under a tip up, or try a jigging spoon tipped with a minnow head. All day action, with peaks in the evening. The bite is good.
Panfish: Crappies, bluegills and perch in the Eagle River area are on mud flats in 20 feet of water or less. The perch are tight to bottom. The crappies and gills while suspending have changed their pattern a bit. Drop your line in the upper half of the water column (some days the crappies and gills are in the upper quarter of the water column). Depth is lake and day dependent. Use a “flasher” to locate the depth, as this will save you drilling a lot of holes that simply won’t produce. Use a waxie, spike, wiggler or crappier minnow either on a small jig, or under a slip bobber. All day action. Bite is good.
(This report based on Creative Brilliance interviews with Eagle River guides “Muskie Matt” of Wild Eagle Lodge, “Ranger Rick” Krueger of Guide’s Choice Pro Shop, and Mat Hegy).