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Jim Tait Real Estate

home : outdoors : fishing May 1, 2016

traveling trails less traveled: Hand lining
Buckshot Anderson photograph
Buckshot Anderson photograph

For a guy who has been wetting lines for over seven decades and was pretty sure he had "been there, done that" in just about every aspect connected with the sport of fishing, I signed up to try a method of fishing I had never heard about called hand lining, or as the old river anglers called it, "pulling wire."
Friday, April 22, 2016


traveling trails less traveled: Opening weekend memories, part one
As I begin putting this column together, the date is April 16 and the North Country is enjoying its third day in a row with above average temperatures

- finally! Some of our smaller lakes are open and the ice covered larger lakes are beginning to turn black with areas of open water along the north shores. It's a situation that puts a twitch in my casting arm!

Friday, April 29, 2016

Where's walleye? Major tagging project aims to find out
Where do walleye go to grow and do they prefer their natal streams when it's time to spawn?
Friday, April 22, 2016

The Lake Where You Live: Walleye spawn
These days on our lakes, under cover of darkness, there plays out a ritual of great biological and cultural importance.
Friday, April 22, 2016

Spring boat maintenance starts the season off right
Once the weather starts to warm and the ice starts to break up on the lakes, boats start to come out of storage. While most anglers and boaters take winterizing their crafts seriously, some forget all about spring maintenance. According to Boat US, every boater should take some time to take a look at their boat before hitting the water for the first time. The recommend checking over the motor, electrical system, hull and trailer before heading out the first time. (subscriber access)
Friday, April 8, 2016

Fishing Report: Kurt's Island Sport Shop
Despite cold temps (18 degrees this morning when I opened), lakes that opened up to some extent are not safe to access. Reports in our area show only the south end of Big Arbor Vitae having enough ice (approximately eight inches) to fish and even that should be approached with extreme caution.

Crappies: Good when conditions allow. Slow drop plastics or waxies, or try tip-downs with minnows.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission to survey 25 ceded territory lakes
In an ongoing effort to understand walleye population densities in lakes in the ceded territory, The Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission (GLIFWC) will be conducting surveys on several area lakes shortly after the ice comes off.

Biologists will collect data on walleye length, age, sex and abundance within the 1837 and 1842 treated ceded territories in a three state are on behalf of its member tribes. (subscriber access)

Friday, April 8, 2016

Panfish regulations change on 93 lakes in Wisconsin
In an effort to improve panfish size on 93 Wisconsin lakes, new regulations took effect on April 1.

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is putting the experimental regulations in place following a process that involved more than 3,500 survey responses, more than 30 public meetings, multiple questions on two spring hearing questionnaires before the Wisconsin Conservation Congress and approval by the Natural Resources Board.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Spring hearings part 8: Trophy musky, bass size limits, yellow perch and more
The DNR spring hearings are coming up next Monday. The hearings will be at 7 p.m. on April 11 in every county in the state. Forty-five specific questions will be asked of stakeholders across the state. The questions cover a wide range of topics of interest to hunters, trappers, anglers and outdoorsmen and women. Here are a few of the questions that will be asked at the hearings this year, as well as some background on why the questions are being asked...(subscriber access)
Friday, April 8, 2016

Invasive Impacts: Big Lake
Big Lake is a 827-acre lake in Vilas County near Presque Isle. It has a maximum depth of 61 feet and is moderately clear. Visitors can access the lake via two boat landings. One is on Highway K and the other at Big Lake Campground. The campground is very popular, especially on holiday weekends. There are 73 primitive campsites in the campground, making controlling invasive species there somewhat of a challenge. (subscriber access)
Friday, April 8, 2016

Fish like a girl: Rule changes provide sportsmen with more protections, a better future and improved ease of access
Gov. Walker signed a bill into law last weekend that has become known as the "Hunter harassment" law. While there was already a law in place protecting sportsmen in legal pursuit of their quarry, this law goes a bit further. It also outlaws photographing, video taping or using any other electronic means to record the legal movements and actions of hunters, anglers and trappers. Drones were also added to the list of items one may not use to harass or otherwise become involved with sportsmen. (subscriber access)
Friday, April 8, 2016

Fish like a girl: The April fools are among us
As anglers, we all remember the great days on the water from last year. We even remember the days we got skunked. But one thing that many anglers do not seem to remember is the problems their boat had when they stored it at the end of the year last year. Everyone knows one of these April fools - The guys who take their boats out in April, hoping everything works again. (subscriber access)
Friday, April 1, 2016

Fish like a girl: DNR now has a line recycling program
Almost everyone knows fishing is big business in northern Wisconsin. Whether we do it for fun, to put dinner on the table, or for the challenge of pitting our wills against a foe with the brain the size of a pea, hundreds of people fish in northern Wisconsin lakes every year. Many of those people go through several spools of monofilament line a year. (subscriber access)
Friday, March 25, 2016

DNR invites entries for trout and salmon stamp contests
Trout and salmon have been capturing the imagination of artists since at least the time of early cave paintings in France some 14,000 years ago, scholars say.

Will your fish art make modern history?

In celebration of Wisconsin's world class inland trout waters and productive Great Lakes fisheries, the Department of Natural Resources is inviting entries for an inland trout stamp design contest and a Great Lakes salmon and trout stamp design contest for the 2017 year stamps.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Fish like a girl: What would Tom Sawyer think?
It is something we've all at least seen if we haven't done it ourselves - a young angler with his or her spinning rod and reel, square plastic tackle box full of hooks and bobbers, and a container of worms walking over a railroad track on the way to the river's edge.

Reaching an age where it was OK to head to the fishing hole alone or with friends, rather than having mom or dad tag along, was a milestone for many kids in my day.

It's different today. (subscriber access)

Friday, March 18, 2016

Invasive Impacts: What is a DASH unit and does your lake need one?
Many lakes throughout the area struggle with invasive species. Eurasian watermilfoil (EWM) is a species so prolific that it can be difficult to contain. Even lakes with very active lake associations can have problems controlling EWM.

Hiring professional divers to pull EWM can be expensive. It can also be a logistical problem. Finding divers who are free at the time a lake association needs them can be difficult. (subscriber access)

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

the lake where you live: From egg to icebox: How fast do fish grow?
In the brutal winter of 2013 to 2014, one of my favorite northern pike lakes froze out. When a friend and I fished it the following summer, we caught just one pike, and a fair description of it would be anorexic - a pitiful sight to see.

I wondered then, if nature were left to its own devices, unaided by stocked fish from hatcheries, how long would it take to catch keeper-sized pike again? And for that matter, suitable perch, bluegills, smallmouth bass, crappies and walleyes, which also inhabited the lake.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Fish like a girl: Does 'Go Wild' go too far?
It seems as though things are about to get even more interesting in the woods. The DNR has introduced its new "Go Wild" initiative. Time will tell how it actually works out, but I just can't get behind the idea. Among other things, the program allows hunters and anglers to print not only licenses, but carcass tags, directly from their own computers. This goes hand-in-hand with back tags going away, all in an effort to make it easier to get into outdoor sports, according to the DNR. (subscriber access)
Friday, March 4, 2016

Local Fishing Report: The Angler's Choice Guide Service with John Andrew
Our fishing is doing well for panfish. Bluegills are biting well with wax worms. Two-pound test line around the weed lines. We've been doing well for some time now with this pattern and it is still holding.

Northern pike were biting with tip-ups and golden shiners, also around the weed lines with steel leaders. Steel leaders are very important. You don't want those pike cutting off your line.

Walleye fishing is maintaining a stable bite, but it is at sunset and into the dark. Some of the main lake humps or the very slow current areas are producing well. We have to be careful.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Big boat, little boat

I know the media often portrays outdoors pursuits as a redneck affair. But that's not really true. (Subscriber access)


(1 comments)

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

A kid again

I’ve been thinking about when I was a kid a lot lately. Maybe some of the simple joys lost, or no longer a part of life, are the reason. 

Subscriber access


Thursday, May 29, 2014


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