Getting crowded on the lakes
Delavan Lake 7/30/12 through 8/6/12
Delavan Lake has seen a lot of fishing pressure this week. John Gillespie was out the middle of this week, so I don’t expect it to let up anytime soon. On Saturday, the boat launch was exceptionally busy between 5 and 6 a.m., so plan accordingly. The good news is that the fishing remains consistent and most species have available action.
Bluegill fishing has been very consistent off the weed line in 15-20 feet of water. They can be caught on small split shots with a single hook. The best location has been by Assembly Park, just west of the Yacht Club or by Brown's Channel. The key to success is getting just outside the thick weed line and fishing straight beneath the boat. Most of the fish have been 7-8 inches, a nice size for keeping fish.
Largemouth bass have been on the weed points and are schooled up. You want to fish for them with either drop shot rig or a split shot rigged night crawler. For the drop shot fishermen, use a 1-foot drop and a small 4-inch Yum Hoodini worm. The best color is green pumpkin. The deep weed line bite has either been a split shot rigged night crawler or casting a swimming jig in black and blue with a black trailer. The best location has been the points like the Yacht Club, Willow Point or the Oriental boathouse. The fish are schooled up so if you catch one you should be able to catch four or five.
Northern pike fishing has been very slow for me. I’ve been catching a couple. Lakeside Bait and Tackle has been saying that a bunch are being caught on medium suckers, but I personally haven’t found much success. Most of my success on the suckers are largemouth bass fished beneath a Thill big fish slip bobber in 12 feet of water. The best location for the northerns has been by Belvidere Park or just west of the Yacht club.
Walleye fishing has been spotty. Most of the action is coming at dusk or pre-dawn. You can either troll medium diving crank baits in a crappie pattern or lindy rigging jumbo leeches. The best depth is about 22-24 feet of water. The floating weeds are a real problem for trolling so you need to constantly clear your line and lures. With perseverance you can catch quite a few.
Crappie fishing has been slow. Most of the fish are suspended 6-10 feet down in 30 feet of water. The best location has been by Willow Point or by the orange marina. The key is that you need to move off the weed line and with a good depth finder find the active fish. I’ve been throwing a 1/32-oz jig with purple plastic for the best success. With almost 80-degree water temperature, the crappies are very soft so I haven’t been keeping any.
Good luck and I hope to see you on the water. For guide parties, please call Dave Duwe at (608) 883-2050
7/28/12 Delavan Lake, 75 degrees and sunny, winds E at 5 mph, water temp 79 degrees. Caught 13 largemouth, two walleyes and a bunch of bluegills. We fished both shallow and deep today with equal success. The larger fish came on slip bobber rigged suckers in about 8 feet of water. The rest of the fish came off of split shot rigged night crawlers. We fished all over the lake, weed points with a hard bottom were the best locations.
7/26/12 - Delavan Lake, 70 degrees, winds 15 mph out of the West. Water temp 79 degrees. Caught 10 largemouth, two walleyes and a plethora of big bluegills. Most of the fish were caught in 15-20 feet of water. A split shot rigged nightcrawler produced most of the action. Fishing near the Oriental boathouse was the most productive.
7/25/12 - Geneva Lake, sunny, 80 degrees, SE winds at 10 mph. Water temp 79 degrees. Caught three smallmouth and two largemouth bass as well as many bluegills and perch. When we first started in the a.m., it was cloudy with a slight chance of rain and the fish bit very well, when the skies cleared the fishing slowed. All the fish were caught on split shot rigged night crawlers. The best location was the Military Academy.
Geneva Lake 7/30/12 through 8/6/12
Geneva Lake continues to be really good fishing but it also continues to be super busy with pleasure boats. Plan to fish early a.m. or late p.m. for a safer, more productive trip.
Lake trout continue to bite in the main lake basin. The best time to try for them is early a.m. as the sun in coming up. Look for the fish 90 feet down in about 110-118 feet of water. The best action has been on nickel/blue or nickel/green spoons. I’ve been placing the lures 40-50 feet behind the down rigger balls.
Walleye continue to bite decently at night. The best hours to try for them are 12 a.m. to 4 a.m. They tend to bite better when there is a slight chop on the water. Try a #13 Rapalas in fire tiger or chrome and black for the most action. The best location has been by Yerkes Observatory or Trinkes.
Largemouth bass are on the deep weed points in 20-25 feet of water. Look for the fish by the 700 Club, the west side of the narrows or by Colemans Point. With the fish so deep, the best presentation is Carolina rigging green pumpkin lizards or drop shotting Yum Hoodini worms. Some of the fish last week were over 5 lbs. A lot of fish are still shallow so the early morning top water bite is still productive. You want to use chrome/blue or chrome/black chug bugs.
Rock bass fishing has been excellent in 12-15 feet of water. The fish are biting on split shot rigged night crawlers or small white hair jigs. The best location has been by the Military Academy or by Colemans Point.
Smallmouth bass fishing has been improving. They are on the deep weed points like the Military Academy or the 700 Club. They are aggressively hitting night crawlers fished on a lindy rig. You want to fish a 24-inch leader and the lightest sinker you can get away with. I’ve also been using a heavy lindy rig with a small perch and catching several really nice fish. Both northern pike and smallmouth bass have been biting on the small perch. I’ve been fishing them almost exclusively in greater than 20 ft of water.
Northern pike action has been improving with the heat. Most of the action has been in 35-40 feet of water. The best location has been by Fontana Beach or the hump in Williams Bay. There aren’t the numbers as there were in recent years, so if you catch one in 15 to 20 minutes you are doing well. The good news is that the average size is quite a bit larger. Remember you need a 32-inch fish if you want a keeper.
Good luck and I hope to see you on the water. For guide parties, please call Dave Duwe at 608-883-2050
Dave Duwe has been a fishing guide on Delavan and Geneva lakes for nearly 20 years. Dave is a community blogger and is not a part of Walworth County Today staff. His opinion is not necessarily that of Walworth County Today staff or management.