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July 6, 2024

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Summer Delayed

The past week was dominated by another major weather system.  The week began with inches of rain, high winds and many days of cold weather.  Anglers were wearing toques and gloves.  The week ended on a nicer note, but that weather event marked a change in the fish location.

Lac Seul is so big and so diverse, that we must treat separate regions of the lake differently.  This week, the walleyes shifted deeper.  The problem is that deeper on the main lake basin sand, meant that we found many fish in 25 – 30 ft. of water.  On the same day and at the same time, deeper in one of the clay-stained regions meant that the walleyes shifted from 8 – 12 down to 12 to 20 ft.

Plastics pulled at speed were more effective when the eyes were shallower. The bigger 6.5 in. Gulp Nemesis were more effective earlier in the week and the smaller profile plastics turned more fish at the end.  Most of the guides were using 3/8 oz. jigs at 1 – 1.2 mph when pulling plastics.  Finding fish with electronics and fishing lighter jigs (1/8 and ¼ oz.) with minnows vertically became more and more effective as the fish moved deeper.

For the week, we caught and released 41 walleyes over 27 in., including 12 – 28s, and 4 – 29s.  Volume was very strong again with daily guide sheets averaging 45 over 18 in. per boat per day.  The highest daily total was 85.

Most years the main lake cabbage weeds top out by the 4th of July.  That is normally a marker we use to begin to focus on summer pike in the main lake weeds.  With rising water and cooler daytime temps, the weeds feel like they are behind by at least a week.  The pike fishing results were also a little quieter than expected.  For the week, we caught and released 9 over 37 in., including 1 – 38 and 1 – 39.  And some of those were caught while pulling Gulp for walleyes.  Some of the targeted big pike were caught off main lake rock near emerging weedbeds.

The mayflies are now emerging all over the lake and I am pretty sure that next week’s report will barely mention smallmouth bass.  We caught the tail end of that bite this week with 11 over 19 in., including 5 over 20.

The Take Away:

Yesterday and today were the first summer-like days that we have had this season.  Even though there was a significant shift of walleyes moving deeper this week, there was a spirited discussion at tonight’s round table as to whether there will be a walleye weed bite soon.  If we see multiple days of sunshine and light winds, then my bet is yes.

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Additional Photos for July 6, 2024