Lake Wisconsin Area Calendar of Events for June

June 1st – Lodi Mammoth Fun Run and Hike.

5k and 10k run or a 5k hike on Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Register 8 – 8:40am at Doctor’s Park, 218 S. Main St. or 608-592-7817

June 2nd – Baraboo Pizza in the Park Annual Zoo Fundraiser. 11am – 3pm, all you can eat, Ochsner Park, 903 Park St., Children’s games, rides, live music, face painting, silent auction and arts and crafts fair.

June 7th – Lodi Friday Arts Walk.  5 – 9pm every Friday through Oct. 4th. Meet the Artists and view art at various shops in downtown Lodi.

June 7 – 9th, Lodi Harmony Grove Garage Sales

Map published in the Lodi Enterprise newspaper the week prior to event.


June 8th & 9th – Wisconsin Dells Taste of the Dells Arts and Crafts Show. Saturday 9 – 4pm. Sunday 9 – 3pm. Free admission. Event benefits the Historical Bowman House. Bowman Park, 714 Broadway 608-981-2321

June 11th – Lodi Public Library. Free family program with musician Duke Otherwise, 2pm at Habermann Park, Fair St.

June 15th – Lodi Ninth Annual Great Wiggly Worm Race. Bring your own worm or use one of the library’s highly trained specimens. 9:30am at Lodi Public Library, 130 Lodi St.  608-592-4130

June 15th – Wisconsin Dells Block the Sun Run. Help fight melanoma 5k timed run or 3k fun walk on scenic route in Wisconsin Dells. Music,

Food, beverages, silent auction and raffles. Registration 7am, race begins at 8:30am at Spring Brook Golf Resort, 242 Lake Shore Dr.

June 22nd – Baraboo Evening with the Cranes Fundraiser. Live Music, Wine Sampling, Appetizers, and Cranes. 5 – 8pm at the International Crane Foundation, E11376 Shady Lane Rd. 608-356-9462

June 22 – 23rd, Baraboo Annual Native American Artifact and Antique Show. Antique stone, copper artifacts, beadwork, potter, fossils, Civil War Antique Guns, and much more. Saturday 9am – 5pm, Sunday 8am – 2pm,  Free Admission. Sauk County Fairgrounds, 700 Washington Ave. 920-923-3842

June 23rd – Witwen Camp Meeting, 1:30pm – 4pm. Music by Four Wives Men and Cheddar Chicks at Witwen Park and Campground, 7 miles west of Sauk City, S9855 Hwy E

June 23rd – Baraboo’s Circus of Chefs Gala, featuring the area’s most talented chefs, vintners and brew masters. Sample appetizer, entress, desserts and beverages. Silent and live auction, live music, circus performance and more. 5-9pm at Deppe Wagon Pavilion at Circus World Museum, 550 Water St.

June 27th – 30th, Dane Fireman’s Festival week end in Bert Dean’s Park. Men’s softball tourney, music, and food. Saturday 5k fun run starting at the park. Sunday parade at noon.

June 29th – Portage Concert in the Park.

Parade 4pm in downtown Portage. The Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra will perform a salute to veterans at 6:30pm in Pauquette Park, Hwy 33 and Pierce St. Fireworks over the Wisconsin River at dusk approximately 9:30pm  608-742-6242

Lake Wisconsin Area Calendar of Events for Memorial Weekend

Looking for something to do in the Lake Wisconsin area during the holiday weekend?  Here are a few events to fill your calendar.  Wherever you happen to enjoy the weekend, please remember those who gave their lives to protect our freedom.  Thank you to all the Veterans.

May 25thMerrimac Fire Department Pancake Breakfast Fundraiser. 7 – 11am, at Merrimac Fire Station on School St. $7 for adults and $3 for under 12 years.


May 26thFly-In Breakfast at Portage Airport. 7am – 1pm. 1011 Silver Lake Dr.


May 26th – Memorial Day Weekend Shoot and Barbecue. 10am – 6pm. One mile west of Merrimac on Hwy 78 at Merrimac Conservation Club.


May 27th – Merrimac Fire Department Parade. 8am starting at Fire Department ending at Cemetery. Coffee and doughnuts will be served after parade at Fire Station.


May 27th – Lodi Memorial Parade. 10:30am on Main St. downtown Lodi. Ends at Veteran’s Park


Lake Wisconsin Walleye 5.21.13So far the story for spring 2013 has been the seemingly never ending high volume of water coming down from the Dells.   In plain English, that means really fast current in the Wisconsin River making many traditional spring locations such as below the Prairie du Sac Dam, virtually unfishable for much of the spring.

The cold also hung around longer than usual and we had a “late spring”. The walleyes did not wait for the traditional 40-45 degree water temps and were actively spawning in 38 degree water. This is yet another confirmation that day length and not water temp, is the primary factor in determining when walleyes spawn.

May started off slow with cold fronts and high winds but the sun came out, the weather got hot and so did the fishing.  The recent (temporary) drop in the river level and subsequent slowing of the current brought another big wave of fish down out of the river where they’ve been greeted by many happy anglers. Numerous limits of legal size walleyes have been achieved this week already and lots of slot fish too big to keep have been released to live and spawn again next year.

The slot limit works like this:  The daily bag limit is 5 walleyes and saugers (any combination). Walleyes and saugers between 15” to just under 20” are legal to keep and eat.  Walleyes and saugers from 20” to 28” must be released as they are the prime spawners that allow this fishery to thrive. One fish over 28” may be kept as a “trophy” but counts towards the daily bag limit of 5.

As far as presentations go, pretty much everything has been working lately. Fish are scattered and walleyes are being caught in depths from 2’ to 18’. I believe that the high percentage play is to focus on the shallow bite. Most folks are simply drifting 1/8oz – 1/4oz jigs tipped with night crawlers downstream with the current in depths anywhere from 3’-11’. Many anglers are scoring in these same areas trolling shad raps (long lining) slowly upstream and back down. I personally have been having success dragging jigs & plastic such as B-Fish-N Tackle’s 3” Moxi Ringle downstream slightly faster than the current and pulling stick baits on bottom bouncers. Both crank baits and jig & plastics have the tendency to produce a better average size fish, so keep this in mind if you’re struggling to catch legal size fish on a plain jig & minnow or jig and crawler combo. If you are on fish shallow and they stop biting, move out a few feet deeper, slow down and Lindy-Rig them with a minnow or crawler. Many of these Lake Wisconsin walleyes will stay shallow for a while longer before transitioning into their summer patterns where they will move into the main lake channel and spread out on the flats (stump fields) where they will remain for the summer gorging themselves on mayfly larvae and shad.

If crappie fishing is your preference, fishing for them has been very good as well. Look for wood in calm, shallow bays and crappies are likely to be nearby. Usually finding water where the surface temp is just a couple of degrees warmer can help you narrow down likely locations. Simple presentations such as a slip bobber and minnow or small tube jigs are effective right now. I’ve heard that the average size being caught seems to be improving over the previous few years.

Gary Sanders

Lake Wisconsin Walleyes, LLC

Lake Wisconsin Fishing Report 3/11/13

Ice Fishing on Lake Wisconsin

Ice conditions on Lake Wisconsin have been good this winter for those few that ventured out. February gave up good numbers of big white bass on small blade baits and Jigging Rapalas and those same areas are now producing crappies.

We’ve been finding crappies fairly consistently over the past several weeks in 18-22 feet of water within a short distance off the break from the 13 foot flats. The best bite has consistently been late afternoon into the evening. The schools of crappies once located, tend to hang around for relatively long periods as long as a bait is down the hole to keep their attention. Two presentations have been effective depending on the day – keeping the baits just above the fish and slowly teasing them up and dead-sticking.

I’ve had the best luck with size 10 Northland Tackle Hexi-Flies in tiger beetle tipped with 2-3 spikes and also size 12 Lindy Glow Worms in techni-glow red tipped with plastic. Other colors will certainly produce as well. Note these are both horizontal presentations as that as had the most success. Minnows have taken some crappies on certain nights for some local anglers in on this action as well.

The Wisconsin River at the Dells below the Kilbourn dam has been open for weeks now with reports of lots of walleyes and saugers being caught and there is open water below the Prairie Du Sac dam as well. The rain opened up a landing on the Fox River at DePere and the Wolf River at Fremont should be open within the next couple weeks. If the weather does not get to cold, the Wisconsin River above Lake Wisconsin should be ice-free by the end of March as well. Panfish action in areas such as the grade, Okee Bay and Gallus Slough should all soon be turning on for March late ice action. With the recent rains, the warmer weather, increased current and runoff will all work to erode the ice rapidly so use caution.

Lake Wisconsin White Bass

It looks like 2013 will be a more typical spring walleye run with plenty of snow melt which is great news as the 2012 walleye spawn was largely a bust due to exceptionally warm weather last February and March and lack of flow. If you haven’t already, it’s time to go through your gear, re-spool your reels and get the boat ready.

Gary Sanders

Lake Wisconsin Walleyes, LLC

Lake Wisconsin December Fishing Report

The bulk of Wisconsin’s archery and gun deer seasons are behind us and my freezer is full, but if you either haven’t tagged a deer yet, or would like a crack at more, no worries – there are plenty of opportunities left. In our area, deer hunting continues until Jan 6, 2013. The Lake Wisconsin area offers exceptional hunting opportunities for both waterfowl and deer with plentiful public access in both Columbia and Sauk Counties. Many of those who elected to take advantage of the mild days during the hunting season to fish instead, were rewarded with some nice catches as November 2012 provided some pretty good sauger fishing on Lake Wisconsin.

During the last week of November, Those who braved the cold and at time’s, dense fog and skim ice at the landings to be on the water during the short, yet productive peak feeding windows were often rewarded with limits of fish. Vertical jig & plastics was the best presentation with hair jigs coming in a close second. The keys to success for many were finding baitfish over deep water with electronics and either vertically presenting a jig/plastic or hair jig & minnow combo by holding the bait still 4”-6” above the bottom or slowly dragging the combinations along the bottom.

As it is now December, many of Lake Wisconsin’s walleyes and saugers have already moved up the lake and into the Wisconsin River as they do every fall and winter. This seasonal migration is the precursor to the spring spawn, where the majority of the walleye population in Lake Wisconsin makes the 25 mile swim up the Wisconsin River to spawn below the Kilbourn Dam at the Wisconsin Dells. I just tried out the new public access next to the River’s Edge Resort on December 8, and it worked great. The same is true at the other end of Lake Wisconsin where numerous walleyes and saugers travel more than 85 miles up the lower Wisconsin River from the Mississippi River to spawn below the Prairie du Sac Dam. Both dams offer excellent open water fishing opportunities in the winter and if you already put your boat away, good catches can be had with just a pair of waders below the dam at Prairie du Sac.

Gary Sanders

Lake Wisconsin Walleyes, LLC

Lake Wisconsin Fishing Report 11/5/12

The weather we experienced so far through October, is what I would categorize as a “classic fall”. This is a seemingly rare event lately, as in recent memory we have had a number of years with unusually warm periods in autumn that continually warm up the water that had just cooled off and thus affecting the bite. In the fall, warm fronts are great for watching football games or raking the yard, but have a similar affect on fishing as a cold front does in the summer. I won’t say fish stop biting, I don’t really believe fish ever really do – we just sometimes don’t effectively react to environmental changes and struggle to do well when rapid changes occur.

Fishing has been incredibly consistent for some of us, as a catchable population of walleyes and saugers in Lake Wisconsin have been pretty much in the same locations for a month now, and more are showing up all the time. If the weather during the month of November follows suit with October, it is only going to get better. We have had significant rains on a regular basis that creates current and I believe, stimulates ongoing movement up the lake and into the river to wintering locations. The river was up to 6190 CFM at the Kilbourne Dam on October 30 which is the most significant flow we’ve had in many months. Walleyes and saugers should be moving into the deep holes in the river and turning on now so if you need a place to get out of the wind, keep that in mind. As for the lake, focus on the deep break lines from 15’ to 20’ (generally) within a half mile of either side of the trestle, specifically the “tongue” areas that look like underwater points along the channel edge (the spot on the spot). The 3″ & 4″ Authentix Moxi Ringle from BFISHN Tackle on a 1/4oz to 3/8oz Precision Jig has been out fishing EVERYTHING else 5 to 1 the last couple weeks. Tip it with a minnow or fish it plain, or try adding scent like Smelly Jelly to the plastic (old guide trick). One thing to note from the recent brief warm-up is that fish are not biting all day long. It will be slow and then a flurry for an hour and then slow again. When the leaves are all gone and the water temps stabilize in the low 40’s – that’s hammer time!

Contrary to what I’ve just wrote, I have been frequently contacted recently by fisherman grumbling about not having much success. We all struggle finding active fish at times, it’s why it’s called fishing and not catching, but I suspect the issue is likely one of three things for most of these folks:

1. A timing issue (e.g.) choosing to fish in the morning when the major feeding window was in the afternoon. Often success in fishing is not an all day long event, it is short periods of increased activity that you have to capitalize on, and attention to the details such as feeding windows impacted by the sun and moon (moon phase, sunrise, sunset, moonrise, moonset) can make all the difference on some days. Some days it’s like magic, some days it’s not, but you can try stacking the odds in your favor by looking up this information when you plan your trip.

2. Lack of the proper tools such as a GPS with a detailed lake map chip. If you haven’t already, and you’re serious about wanting to do well more consistently, you really should consider making the investment in a GPS device with an updated lake map. This can mean the difference between catching a fish and catching a bunch of fish.

3. Boat control. Controlling your boat’s position and speed relative to the cover or structure you’re fishing whether you’re trolling, drifting or position fishing is critical to success and a GPS with a map chip helps enormously.

I will add that it is critical to have CONFIDENCE in what you are doing as well as be FOCUSED on what you are doing. You can direct someone to exactly the right location, tell them the best presentation, color etc… But they still have to pay attention to the innumerable variables like wind, weather, boat control, moon related feeding windows, and on and on. If you are jigging and happen to catch a nice walleye or sauger, were you paying attention to what you were doing at the time? Do you remember how you were jigging? Were you snapping it off the bottom, dragging the jig, or just subtly lifting it 2″? Did you glance at your GPS/graph to note the depth and location before the wind blew you off the spot as you took your foot off the trolling motor foot control to reel in and net the fish so you can go back and repeat what you just did? Attention to these details will increase your catch.

Tight Lines,

Gary Sanders

Lake Wisconsin Walleyes, LLC

Lake Wisconsin Fishing Report 10/18/12

The fall colors around Lake Wisconsin are spectacular right now and the fishing for Lake Wisconsin’s walleyes is getting pretty good also. Some of the same patterns that were effective in late September, are not only still working, they are improving. The declining water temps to the high 40’s, as well as the increased current from the recent heavy rains, have caused some fish to move up the lake into more predictable locations. This is a natural progression that occurs annually and is triggered by a number of factors to include day length, water temperatures, flow or current and sometimes forage. The best is yet to come, however, when the water temperature gets down to 40° – 45º and stabilizes, fish will concentrate even more in deeper water and provide the classic “fall bite” everyone desires.

A wide variety of presentations are effective right now and that is the easiest variable to control. Location is much more critical – if you find them, chances are you can get some to eat what you’re offering. Numerous color combinations are effective and while I’ll concede that on some days color can be critical, I believe you should choose colors that you have confidence in, whatever they may be. Confidence in what you’re doing keeps your head in the game, you’ll be more focused, and put more fish in the boat.


Fish have been scattered along the channel edges from the 13′ – 15′ flats to 20′ as well as scattered along the bottom in 18′ – 23′. If you’re marking fish deeper, well, then fish deeper of course. Fish the more complex break lines near deep water, keying on “tongue” areas or the bends and irregularities along the break lines that resemble small points. It’s not just walleyes and saugers occupying these areas either, expect to run into the occasional crappie, pike, catfish and plenty of white bass as well.


• Northland Tackle Fireball jig and (jumbo fathead) minnow in 1/4 oz – 3/8 oz sizes vertically jigged with a subtle motion near the bottom. Use big minnows now if you can get them.

Colors: Firetiger, Parrot, Parakeet & gold are favorites of mine but others work equally well.

• Blade baits – A variety of them get bites, but the 1/4 oz B-Fish-N B3 blade gets my vote for the one that consistently hooks fish the best as the hooks are both sharp and appropriately sized. These are fished vertically with a snap-jigging motion and most hits come on the drop, so it is critical to maintain contact or feel with the bait as it is dropped down. In other words, don’t let the blade fall on slack line after you snap it up. Additionally you’ll want to choose a medium-heavy rod that has a fast action for good hook sets. Baitcasting rod/reel combos work great for this.

Colors: – Glow green tiger, orange glow tiger and gold plate all work, but feel free to customize yours with your own favorite color or combinations – a couple cans of spray paint in contrasting colors are cheap and fish are not too critical of art skills. Simply mask off the area you don’t want painted and spray.

• Hair jigs – A variety of materials work but plain old bucktail jigs are my favorite. Tip with either a minnow or gulp alive if desired as it can help on some days but is not always necessary.

Colors: Contrasting combinations light and dark colors such as chartreuse, orange, blue, white, green, black, purple and yellow work well and if you tie your own, try adding some strands of mylar tinsel for added flash.

• Jig & plastic – The old standby twister tails work, but new designs that have more of a shad-like profile such as the 4” Authentix Moxi Ringle from B-Fish-N on a 3/16 oz, 1/4 oz. or 3/8 oz B-Fish-N Precision jig head can be pure magic. It’s a bigger offering but hungry walleyes are looking for a meal this time of year. If the bite is slow try adding some scent or tip with a minnow.

Colors: (jigs) Green tiger, orange/chartreuse, orange tiger, sour apple, pyro-keet, black and ford blue and (Moxi’s)chartreuse/orange core, chartreuse/green core, chartreuse pepper, goldcracker/chartreuse & firecracker/chartreuse have all put Lake Wisconsin walleyes in the boat recently.

• Lindy Rig – The old stand-by Lindy Rig can be an excellent choice either with a jumbo fathead hooked through the lips or tail or tie on a Northland Tackle Gum-Drop Floater in your favorite color. (Try hooking the minnow through the head upside down to make it struggle more)

• Dubuque Rig – This is a big sauger killer! This variation of the Wolf River rig, substitutes the pencil sinker drop weight with a big, heavy 5/8 oz, ¾ oz, or 1 oz jig dressed with either hair, plastic, live bait, Gulp Alive – really whatever you want. Simply tie your main line to a three way swivel, add a 6” – 8” drop line from the three-way swivel to the jig and an 18” – 36” leader from the remaining eye on the three-way swivel to a floating Rapala or a Gum-Drop Floater/minnow combination. You’re fishing two presentations at once and big saugers love the big thump of a big jig! Drop the rig to the bottom and slowly work your way along the break line with the electric motor while lifting and dropping back.

Gary Sanders
Lake Wisconsin Walleyes, LLC

Lake Wisconsin Fishing Report 10/4/12

As summer on Lake Wisconsin and the Wisconsin River comes to a close, we look forward to fall fishing. In between, there is a period of transition, where the days are getting shorter, nights cooler, and the average daytime temperatures are lower. This September’s trend of steadily declining water temperatures to the mid 50’s came to an abrupt halt with the recent warm spell.  This time of year, one hopes that water temps fall quickly, bottom out and stay cool, as that accomplishes both the triggering of the urge to feed in anticipation of winter, as well as to provide some stability in their environment. Stability leads to patterns that can be discovered, learned and repeated. Nature seldom cooperates however, and we deal with what we get.

The full moon definitely helped for the last weekend in September on Lake Wisconsin. Several patterns have been effective depending on what day you fished recently, and being versatile is key. I have had some success recently, vertical jigging with a Northland Fireball jig & minnow on the channel edges. The most fish, were found right on the break from the 13′ flats to the 20′ river channel with 17′-18′ being the best depth. Additionally, some legal saugers were caught pulling Storm Thundersticks behind 4 colors of lead core. Work baits up and down the break and note what depth contact is made. Mid-lake humps topping out at 10′-13′ also held many white bass that readily take a jig & minnow combo or a Lindy rigged minnow.

With September 2012 behind us we look forward to October. As the fall progresses, note that calm, sunny days this time of year often trigger movement to shallower water of 10′ or less. Keep in mind that “shallow” is a relative term and “water of 10′ or less” can also refer to the top 10′ of the water column over deep water.

Gary Sanders
Lake Wisconsin Walleyes, LLC

5th Annual Lodi Valley Annual Brew-B-Que – Saturday Sept. 29th

5 Recent Lake Wisconsin Listings

Below is a link to 5 recent listings on Lake Wisconsin.  

One vacant lot with a paved driveway, awesome sunset view and sandy beach frontage.

4 fabulous homes.

One lake home with a fantastic boat house and numerous upgrades throughout.

One newer lake home with room for expansion and abutting a large wooded tract of land for privacy (and amazing views too)

One lake home with almost 3,000 sq. ft. of living space, dual fire places, and long range views.

And one lake home in a highly sought after area with sunset views and includes the vacant lot next door.  150′ of frontage too.

5 Recent Lake Wisconsin Listings