The weather has been all over the chart the past few weeks, but it’s warming up and fishing is going to be a lot easier.

This time of year fish move into the shallow, warmer waters. Every species moves there: northern pike, walleye, bass and bluegills. The best areas to target are dark-bottom bays at the north end of a body of water because they warm up sooner. “Warm” enough to bring a fish into an area may only be a couple of degrees difference. The fishing activity is also usually better after lunch, when the sun has had a few hours to heat the water up.

Keep in mind that this time of year most waters are pretty clear, and the fish should be easy to see for fishermen wearing a good pair of polarized sunglasses. If you can see them, though, they can see you, so longer casts are required so the fish don’t get spooked.

Soft plastic swimbaits work really well this time of year because they can be fished a little slower but can still be effective in attracting strikes. With this in mind, the reports on fishing the area confirm Busse Lakes are producing some fair catches of bluegills and a few nice walleyes all from the north pool. The Chain-O-Lakes’ two northern lakes – Lake Catherine and Channel Lake – have been showing good catches as well. Those heading out should think after lunch and north shore areas.

Those not heading out might want to stop by the Evanston Ecology Center and Saturday, May 7, at noon. I’ll be doing a seminar “Hooked on Fishing in the ‘Burbs” that will cover the basics with rods, reels, fishing line, fishing knots, bait and of course where to fish. Just call the Ecology Center @ 847-448-8256, or stop by to register for this fun, informational event. This should be fun for everyone from the youngest anglers to adults. It will be enjoyable meeting with and talking to fellow anglers.

Until then, keep a tight line.

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