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Fishing Report July 2012

July 12 - July 16,2012

The hot weather continues and the bigger walleyes continue to be found relatively shallow (13-16 feet).  I would have expected to be catching walleyes deeper by now, but most of the action is still right at the weedlines.  We found nice walleyes in the 21-24 inch range, but rarely more than one or two fish each morning or evening, and the smaller walleyes seem scattered.  The jumbo perch however are schooled up on certain shoreline breaks and you can catch a bunch of great eating size fish (9-11 inches) using fatheads for bait.  The trophy bluegill have shown up at a couple favorite rock piles, but they will prefer leeches or crawlers with their small mouths.  The biggest bluegill we saw was just shy of 11 inches long and as thick as a 2x4 stud (gill-to-gill).  Both northern pike and walleyes are hitting crankbaits trolled along the mid-lake reef weedlines.

June 29 - July 6, 2012

The week of the Fourth of July holiday was about as hot and calm as I have ever seen the summer weather in Minnesota.  With temperatures in the mid-90s and high humidity, you needed to either be in the water or on the water to be comfortable.  While I suspected this hot blast would slow down the fishing bite somewhat, we regularly caught larger walleyes (20+ inches) as well as found plenty of keeper perch (10-12 inches) along shoreline sand breaks.  Fishing with fathead minnows about 14 feet deep will help you find the big perch.  Surface water temperatures almost reached 80 degrees during the mid-day sun and that is the warmest I have ever seen Woman Lake.  It is much cooler a couple feet down and is now perfect swimming temperature for those who enjoy swimming, skiing, tubing, etc.  It won't be long now before the big bull bluegills start to converge on the mid-lake rocks.  That is one of my favorite bites of the year.  I love hearing the sound of my reel drag and feel the power of a 1+ pound bluegill when they smack my offering.  I am always surprised by the raw strength of the real big ones.