I don’t think anyone can say they anticipated temperatures like this in mid November. There have been years we’ve had a significant amount of ice by now, but there are still boat lifts and docks out. Usually deer hunting week there are very few, if any boats out on the water. This year there were some accesses that were nearly full. Even though it looks like we will get a shot of winter later this week, there will still be anglers out for quite some time.
The walleye fishing is usually past its peak by now and the only anglers out are after that true trophy. This year the water is still so warm it’s leaving anglers wondering if we will ever get the typical fall walleye feeding binge? Sure we’ve had good days here and there but it’s been far from the fantastic fishing we are used to.
Typically in the Alexandria area the walleye bite gets hot in early October. The shallower lakes start first and by mid to late October the bite is hot on the deeper lakes. This year the deep lake bite has never really become consistent. I can’t complain though, the past few years the spring and summer walleye bites have produced record numbers of walleye. With the consistently warmer temps I have to wonder if this is our new normal?
The majority of the walleye that are being caught right now still seem to be coming from the shallower/smaller lakes. My best luck has been with a simple 1/4-3/8oz jig and a minnow in 14-22′ feet of water. I’ve had decent luck on quite a few bodies of water but very few outings that I would call excellent.
One thing to note is the past few years when the fall bite was less than I had hoped the winter bite was much better than I expected. So lets hope for a quick transition from boat fishing to ice fishing. Enjoy the nice weather while it’s here and get the ice augers ready!