The weather has been absolutely terrible for fishing, with low pressure systems one after the other, thunder and lightning. It doesn’t get any worse than that. 

Low pressure is felt particularly hard by fish as it’s felt under water and puts them off their food for hours or days. Rain doesn’t bother the fish or affect fishing by itself, I have had some really good days fishing in the rain. Thunder and lightning are another story; both have a major impact on fish. 

With all the rain we have been getting recently, the rivers and their feed waters are at or near capacity levels. This means there are probably pretty muddy with water clarity down to inches, and current flow will be pretty strong on our area rivers.

The other factor that rain brings to the equation is a drop in water temperature, which has a strong impact, especially in the early part of the year, on fish location.  Put all this together and you have a pretty sad picture for those of us who like to fish. You can sneak in a day or two between the storms, if you’re lucky, and there were reports of some good fishing between the rain drops.

 A few hard fishermen were out on Lake Geneva the past few weeks and found the smallmouth bass were post-spawn and hungry. They were locating numbers of the bronze beauties in 15 to 20 feet of water using drop-shot rigs. The reports from Lake Winnebago were that the usual bit on the reefs was not happening, but if you were to try trolling a #7 Rapala behind a board, you would find plenty of walleye. 

On the Fox Chain with the water level up, the best efforts were for walleyes in good current areas like the channels and the bridges. Live bait, preferably minnows were doing the job. A report of a few muskie being caught was some more good news. We just need more good days and fewer rain outs for us fishermen.

Reminder: The Lovelace Park pond is open for all the younger anglers every Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The City of Evanston provides all they need to enjoy fishing – fishing pole, bait and a stocked pond at no cost. Get out and enjoy fishing. 

Until next time…keep a tight line.

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