Published September 20, 2018 by the Central Office
View current conditions for Wisconsin State Parks, Trails and Forests
Check out the Wisconsin Department of Tourism (exit DNR).
For current statewide information on statewide fall color, log onto the Wisconsin Department of Tourism's Fall Color Report (exit DNR).
The official start of fall comes on Saturday with the autumnal equinox, followed by this year's full Harvest Moon on Monday night. Northern Wisconsin is reporting 25-30 percent color on the Wisconsin Department of Tourism Fall Color Report (exit DNR).
However, the weather was anything but fall-like last weekend as a heat wave hit across the state with temperatures into the high 80s even in northern Wisconsin. Fall has since moved back in with a cool down the last few days.
A decent walleye bite is starting on the Wolf River. With the progression into fall there has been a transition from mostly walleye fishing to a healthy split between the walleye and musky anglers on Green Bay. Both groups struggled to find any consistent success in the heat.
Shore anglers are still catching some bass from Door County but action seems to be slowing down. Perch action has also slowed down but a few fish have been caught in the Sturgeon Bay canal.
The heatwave increased the water temperature on Lake Michigan and in tributaries slowing down the fall salmon runs that had started. Anglers numbers have been increasing on the Kewaunee and East and West Twin rivers as chinook salmon have begun to make their way up rivers and the number of fish being caught has increased as well. Anglers fishing the Manitowoc, Milwaukee, Menomonee Root or Pike rivers have had little success yet.
Folks have continued to crowd the Kewaunee pier for chinook with a couple king salmon coming in both silvery or brown colors. Salmon could be seen jumping at the Algoma pier but catch rate remained low during the heat wave. Anglers fishing out on the lake were getting chinook and some brown and rainbow trout but surface temperatures were high and people were fishing deep to find cooler water.
It's walleye stocking time at the Art Oehmcke State Fish Hatchery in Woodruff. Hatchery staff earlier this week started moving large "extended growth" walleye fingerlings with a goal of measuring at least 6 inches for stocking in Florence, Fond du Lac, Forest, Langlade, Oconto, Oneida, Shawano, Sheboygan, Vilas, Washington and Waupaca counties.
Grouse hunters are reporting finding a few birds. Small game hunters last weekend reported seeing a high number of woodcock just in time for the upcoming opener on the Sept. 22.
Mosquitos are still out in full force and will probably continue to be through the weekend. Because of the mosquitos many archery deer hunters are taking a break and waiting for cooler weather, but a few are reporting decent success and have begun to fill tags.
Those who took part in the youth hunt reported seeing large numbers of local mallards, wood ducks and teal while afield. Hopefully cooler weather will draw a few more down from the north just in time for opener on Saturday Sept. 29. Duck hunters that plan to head out into Horicon Marsh by boat opening day should use extreme caution as recent heavy rains have dislodged many cattail bogs which are free floating and creating blockages and potential hazards.
On September 17, northerly winds supported large numbers of southbound broad-winged hawks. Look for kettles of soaring groups of broad-wings across the state over the week ahead as their migration peaks. A diversity of other raptors will also be on the move, such as sharp-shinned and Cooper's hawks, ospreys, American kestrels, and more.
It's a great time for birding! Warbler numbers are near peak in the south and beginning to decline up north, except for ubiquitous palm and yellow-rumped warblers. Likewise for ruby-throated hummingbirds, rose-breasted grosbeaks, and both Swainson's and gray-cheeked thrushes. In their wake lies the vanguard of short-distance migrants as more white-throated sparrows and dark-eyed juncos have moved in. Other sparrows to look for now include song, white-crowned, Lincoln's, savannah, and swamp. The first rusty blackbirds, Lapland longspurs, and American pipits have trickled in, while southern birders in wet meadows report marsh and sedge wrens, bobolinks, various sparrows, and migrating soras. Keep an eye to conifer stands and backyard feeders for red-breasted nuthatches, which continue to flood southward in numbers well above-average. Monday, September 17, saw a big southward flight of Canada geese in many areas. A few cackling, snow, and greater white-fronted geese were reported among them. The day's favorable northerly winds also supported large numbers of southbound broad-winged hawks. Look for kettles (soaring groups) of broad-wings across the state over the week ahead as their migration peaks. A diversity of other raptors will also be on the move, such as sharp-shinned and Cooper's hawks, ospreys, American kestrels, and more. Also look for departing American white pelicans and groups of sandhill cranes gathering for their exodus next month. Many birders are gathering now for the Wisconsin Society for Ornithology's annual "Jaegerfest" event in Superior, which runs through Sunday, September 23. True to its name, multiple parasitic jaegers have already been seen, along with possible Pomarine jaeger, arctic tern, Franklin's gull, great black-backed gull, surf scoters, and a wide variety of other species. Additional Franklin's gulls were found in Dodge and Eau Claire counties, as well as a lesser black-backed in Dane. Surf scoters were also reported from Harrington Beach, where a dedicated waterbird counter also reported good numbers of both teal species this week. Make your observations count for science by submitting them to www.ebird.org/wi. Good birding! - Ryan Brady, conservation biologist, Ashland
This Saturday join the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin, Friends of Point Beach State Forest, The Fund for Lake Michigan, and Wisconsin State Parks as we celebrate the completion of a $100,000 storm water runoff project, which will help make Point Beach's 6 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline cleaner and healthier for future generations. Staying with the water theme, Lakeshore State Park continues its Lake Michigan Education Series with a program on lake invertebrates and on Friday visit Interstate Park on Wisconsin's "West Coast" for a program on water quality measuring. With all the water this summer this has been a great season for mushrooms and other fungi and Willow River will be holding a Fungi in the Forest Program. Universe in the Park will be at Kohler-Andrae and Mirror Lake Saturday night. On Sunday, Kettle Moraine South will hold a Birds of Prey Program and Lakeshore will be celebrating the autumnal equinox with a hike. Click on the links below for highlighted programs this weekend or click on "Get Outdoors," for a complete listing of events.
And don't forget to visit #OutWiGo and sign the pledge to stay active in Wisconsin's outdoors.
Friday, September 21, 2018
Saturday, September 22, 2018
Sunday, September 23, 2018
Saturday, September 22 & Sunday September 23, 2018
For all events search Get Outdoors
Sept 27, 9 a.m.-noon - Kettle Moraine Oak Opening Workday: Removing oriental bittersweet and collecting seed - Come help volunteers during the weekday version of Southern Kettle Moraine SNA workdays. We'll remove invasives by spraying and collect seed. This work will follow up on efforts in previous years to continue to restore the native plant community.
No skills needed you will be trained onsite. Check the State Natural Areas Volunteer Program page of the DNR website for details. - Jared Urban, conservation biologist, Dane. - Jared Urban, conservation biologist, Dane
Superior DNR Service Center area
Brule River State Forest - Last weekend's summer-like weather moved out in a hurry, and fall has moved in. The last few days have been cool with highs in the 50s, and rain is on the way. But this weekend should be a bit warmer and sunny. The official start of fall comes on Saturday with the autumnal equinox, followed by this year's full Harvest Moon on Monday night. We have not seen frost yet this season, but that isn't far off now. The change in seasons bring quickly changing conditions in the fall colors. Check out www.travelwisconsin.com/fall-color-report to find information on the estimated leaf color stage for different areas around the state. The river is running fast for this time of year, and more rain will keep the flow higher than normal for a while. Fishermen are having some hit and miss luck with fishing. Be sure to check the river flow at www.waterdata.usgs.gov/usa/nwis/uv?site_no=04025500 before heading out for fishing or canoeing. - Diane Gobin, visitor services associate
Spooner DNR Service Center area
Crex Meadows State Wildlife - Groups of warblers are beginning to move through the Grantsburg Area, including blackpoll warblers, black-throated green warblers, black-throated blue warblers, and more. Ducks, geese, and sandhill cranes are also becoming more visible. We are seeing blue-winged teal, green-winged teal, mallards, wood ducks, and ring-necked ducks. Signs of fall behavior were seen in small groups of cranes as they flew out of Grettum Refuge toward the fields south of Grantsburg. We are still seeing late shorebirds moving through and hanging out in the drawdown area on Phantom Lake, including black-bellied plover, buff-breasted sandpiper, baird's sandpiper, pectoral sandpiper, and more. Other highlights from this week include great egret, merlin, osprey, and red-breasted merganser. - Lauren Finch, wildlife educator
Governor Knowles State Forest - The Fall riding season is in full swing at the Trade River Equestrian Campground. Reservations for weekends at the Equestrian Campground are filling up fast. Keep in mind, the Trade River Equestrian Campground has 20 first-come, first-serve sites that do not show up on the reservation system. Electrification of five sites in the St. Croix Family Campground has started. The project is expected to continue through October. - Brandi Buchholz, ranger
Woodruff DNR Service Center area
Art Oehmcke State Fish Hatchery - It's walleye stocking time at the hatchery in Woodruff. Hatchery staff started moving walleye earlier this week for stocking in Florence, Fond du Lac, Forest, Langlade, Oconto, Oneida, Shawano, Sheboygan, Vilas, Washington and Waupaca counties. The walleye are large fingerlings, or "extended growth", with a goal of measuring at least 6 inches. The fish are part of the Wisconsin Walleye Initiative that upgraded walleye hatcheries and provides DNR additional operating funds to help raise walleye to the larger size before stocking. Staff can harvest one pond per day, which they do by using a seine net to gather fish to be vacuumed up by a fish loading machine. The fish are transferred into a DNR stocking truck for delivery to waters lacking healthy self-sustaining walleye populations. There are 11 walleye ponds at the hatchery with a total of ~125,500 fish. The hatchery also raises musky and staff will begin that harvest in early October.
Northern Lake Michigan fisheries team report
Marinette County - A huge heatwave hit Wisconsin this past weekend. The water temperature of the Menominee River started out at 69.8 degrees but as the week progressed it lowered then rose over the weekend ending on a high of 68.4 degrees. Overall, the fishing pressure remained relatively constant despite the heatwave that occurred this past weekend. Fishing pressure remained high at Menekaunee Harbor, a few walleyes were caught by boat. Low fishing pressure was observed at Little River Ramp this past weekend but earlier in the week, anglers reported catching good numbers of perch but having to sort through lots of smaller fish for a few keepers. Sightings of salmon beginning to stage near the mouth of the Little River have also been reported though no salmon reported caught yet. The Peshtigo River had a high of 73 degrees. Additionally, the discharge of water decreased from 1,700 cubic feet per second earlier in the week to a low of 400 cubic feet per second by the weekend. There was also a decrease in gage height which started at 4 feet earlier in the week to an average of 1.75 feet by Sunday Sept. 16. Fishing pressure remained relatively low this weekend at the Peshtigo Dam area, a small handful of anglers were reported. Fishing pressure remained high over the past weekend at the Klingsborn's Ramp. Anglers reported catching yellow perch which has remained constant over the past few months according to anglers.- Tammie Paoli, fisheries technician, Peshtigo
Oconto County - As the week progressed, flows decreased and water temperatures increased up to 74 degrees by the weekend. There are no reports of trout or salmon yet, but hopefully cooler weather and rain predicted later this week will help. Fishing pressure was high a the Oconto Harbor but catches were generally low during the hot weather. Anglers reported an occasional walleye, as well as some yellow perch, catfish, and sheepshead being caught. Stiles Dam fishing pressure was moderate and anglers reported catching plenty of undersized smallmouth and largemouth bass, with some anglers successfully targeting bluegill. Fishing pressure was low at other access points along the Oconto River including Susie's Rapids at Copper Culture State Park, Holtwood Park ramp, the Oconto Municipal ramp and the Pensaukee River.- Tammie Paoli, fisheries technician, Peshtigo
Brown County - As we continue our progression into fall there has been a transition from mostly walleye fishing to a healthy split between the walleye and musky anglers. Both groups over the past week have struggled to find any consistent success. The few walleye anglers out of the Metro launch were lucky to catch a couple of fish for half a day out on the water. On the musky side of things there was only one fish was reportedly caught. Anglers attribute this to the warmer water (surface temp around 70 degrees). There was also one catfish angler who caught over a dozen fish for a couple hours out. The rough fish catch is down as well for walleye anglers with only a few freshwater drum being caught. There were a few walleye and musky anglers out at the Fox Point /fairgrounds launch but no fish were reported harvested or caught. Over the past week there have been very few anglers out at Voyager compared to recent weeks. The majority of the fishing effort was on whatever they could catch with a few people targeting catfish. At Duck Creek fishing effort was primarily on yellow perch with no one reporting catching fish. Musky anglers were out in force over the past week at both Suamico and Geano beach. Despite the large increase in effort only a few fish were reported to be caught. Sizes of fish caught were told to be in the low to mid 40s. Anglers believe as the water temps decrease they will have more consistent luck landing these large fish. - Adam Garlie, fisheries technician, Peshtigo
Many boaters were out of Bayshore this week but very few fish were harvested as compared to weeks prior. The highest number of yellow perch harvested this week was in the low 20s from two different groups; however most anglers harvested fewer than five perch per person with a few groups not getting a single bite. The same went for the walleye fisherman, with only one group the entire week harvesting their limit while most other walleye anglers only harvested one or none. - Megan Radtke, fisheries technician, Green Bay
Door County - Shore anglers are still catching some bass from Stone Quarry Shore and Anderson Dock but action seems to be slowing down. Wacky worms, ned rigs, tube jigs and crawlers under slip bobbers are productive. Boat anglers report finding good action in deeper water over 20 feet. A few big walleyes have also been caught but catches are far and few between. Perch action has also slowed down but a few fish have been caught in the canal. Angling pressure remains low. Water temps remain in the upper 60s and fish have not yet transitioned to fall patterns. Angling pressure in Gills Rock, Rowleys Bay and Baileys Harbor has been low. Pier fishermen in Rowleys Bay have had some success at first light for smallmouth. Salmon fishing boats out of Baileys Harbor have not had any luck but some chinooks have been spotted in the marina. All Door County streams are low and some are even blocked preventing fish passage. In Sturgeon Bay most anglers have been trolling the canal from Strawberry Creek to the piers with mixed success. Some nice fish have been caught but watch out for logs, old pilings, break walls and other boats.- Ben Thome, fisheries technician, Sturgeon Bay
Several boats were out earlier in the week from Chaudoir's Dock, with reports of success harvesting a limit of yellow perch within two hours using minnows at depths of 22 feet. The walleye bite has been slow at Little Sturgeon Bay with most anglers catching one or none. The yellow perch were slow with most anglers harvesting less than 8. Smallmouth bass have been relatively slow with most boaters catching less than 4. Those that were musky fishing did not catch any. Very few fisherman were out this week out of Sawyer Harbor. Those that were out reported fishing was slow with very few fish being caught and those that were being caught were small or were not the fish they were targeting. - Megan Radtke, fisheries technician, Green Bay
Kewaunee County - There was light to medium fishing pressure picking up in the evenings this weekend at the ramp. The heatwave increased the water temperature to 65-67 degrees from the shore and out past 200 feet of water. Most folks were getting their king salmon within the harbor. Shoreline fishing pressure was high this weekend with catch rate being relatively low during the day and a higher in the evenings. Some king salmon was coming in with good luck using silver blue spoons. Folks continued to crowd the pier for chinook salmon this week and weekend with a couple king salmon coming in both silvery or brown colors. Late in the evenings from midnight to 2 a.m. there were runs reported and good catch rates with a couple folks reaching their limit. Most of the fish were reported to stop biting around 7:30 a.m. Kewaunee River fishing pressure was low early in the weekend though later anglers numbers began to increase the chinook salmon began to make their way up to footbridge and fishing picked up. Water has been a milky brown and salmon have been spotted before rapids or in holes. Good luck was had using spawn sacs. This weekend out of Algoma folks were getting chinook out in 80-150 feet of water. Temperature at the surface was reported to be 66 degrees closer in and cooled to 62 degrees out in 400-500 feet of water. Rainbow trout was coming in from folks out in the 350-450ft of water range. There was medium fishing pressure thoughout the week at the Algoma shoreline with most anglers casting in the early mornings or evenings. There were very few reports of chinook salmon or brown trout coming in. Northern pike was a more frequent catch. King salmon could be seen jumping at the pier but catch rate remained low during the weeks heat wave. Folks were out on the Ahnapee River getting a few yellow perch and small largemouth bass near Olson Park. Water temperature was reported to be high 60s early in the week and increased to mid 70s by late week. Dark salmon were spotted near Blahnik Heritage park. Fishing pressure remained light for the most part.- Aeden White, fisheries technician, Sturgeon Bay
Manitowoc County - The number of anglers fishing the East Twin River near Mishicot has increased over the past week. In addition, to the anglers increasing the number of fish being caught has increased as well. Some salmon are being caught by the dam, but most of the fish were caught downstream from the fire station. Spawn sacs was the ticket for the anglers fishing Mishicot. Salmon are still being caught on the West Twin River in Shoto by the dam. The smaller dam has produced more fish so far compared to the larger dam. Spawn is the ticket here as well. Anglers fishing by Shoto Conservation club have not had any luck this fall for salmon or browns. The water flow at Shoto has decreased dramatically compared to two weeks ago and some rain would be beneficial. Anglers fishing on the piers in Two Rivers had a tough week. The numbers of fish caught decreased as well as the number of anglers fishing. The few fish that were caught this week seemed to come off of Little Cleo's, which is different compared to last week when everything was on the bottom on spawn and bait. Northern pike have been caught off both the north and south piers on the lake side. The northerns were caught while casting for salmon. Fishing on the lake out of Two Rivers slowed down this past week. Anglers were marking fish steadily outside the pier heads but couldn't get them to bite. The few fish that did decide to hit anything came on j-plugs and early in the morning, just at sun-rise. Anglers that tried out in deeper water did not have any success either. Bullheads are still being caught at will in the Two Rivers harbor. No reports of salmon being caught in the harbor this past week. Anglers fishing throughout the Manitowoc River have had little success over the week. Smallmouth bass are being caught by Manitou park on white jigs. Chinook salmon were seen surfacing up by Manitou Park with one chinook being caught there. Anglers fishing across from the sub and by the 10th street bridge didn't have any luck this week. Fishing on the lake out of Manitowoc has slowed down with most boats coming in with zero or one fish, despite marking fish all over the place outside the pier heads. The fish that were caught came in on j-plugs chrome in color. Anglers going out deeper and trying their luck on younger chinooks and rainbows did not have any luck either. Manitowoc pier fishing is still slow with some chinooks being caught while casting spoons. Most of the fish were caught on the south pier. Smallmouth bass were also caught along the south pier jigging on the bottom. Northern Pike are still being caught in the harbor casting spoons. Rainbows have been spotted inside the harbor, but none were landed. No perch were caught in the past week.- Cody Flavionl, fisheries technician, Mishicot
Peshtigo DNR Service Center area
Marinette County - Fall colors are starting to show in Marinette county. Geese and cranes have begun to flock up. Hummingbirds are making their last visits to backyard nectar feeders as potential frost looms in the weekend forecast. Hunting seasons will be in full swing this weekend with woodcock season opening on the Sept. 22. This is the time of year when Marinette county residents and visitors have many more options than time! Salmon are beginning to stage near the rivers, waterfowl are beginning to migrate, small game seasons are open including squirrel, rabbit, turkey, grouse, dove etc., mushrooms are popping up following rain events, apples are ready for picking...the list goes on and on! Grouse hunters are reporting finding a few birds. A few bow hunters have begun to fill tags. Please remember that Marinette County now has a positive CWD sample and is now under a baiting an feeding ban county wide. CWD samples are being collected from within a 10-mile radius of the known positive in northwest Marinette county. If you are hunting in Marinette county in the area west of county highway U/Old A and north of approximately Benson lake Road then you are likely in an area that CWD samples are being requested. Donating a CWD sample is voluntary but highly encouraged to help us determine the extent of the disease. Hunters are allowed to keep the antlers with skull plate and can even take a deer to the taxidermist and bring us a sample later. There is a freezer at the North Country Inn in Dunbar that is setup for hunters to drop off a sample. There are other sample drop-off points in the area as well. Please search CWD SAMPLING on our DNR web page to learn more. Mosquitoes are bad in some areas of the county, but virtually absent in others.- Aaron McCullough, wildlife technician, Wausaukee
The leaves are slowly beginning to change color and the weather for the upcoming weekend looks to be beautiful with temps in the low 60s and upper 50s. The areas off-highway vehicle trails are still in great shape and many riders are still enjoying the trails. If you plan on ATV riding this weekend please obey speed limits, ride responsibly, and always wear your helmet. Small game hunters last weekend reported seeing a high number of woodcock in the area. Just in time for the upcoming opener. As a reminder to all those deer hunting in Marinette County, BAITING is NOT PERMITTED. Please refer to the deer hunting regulations regarding rules and regulations related to baiting. As always feel free to contact 1-888-WDNRINFo (1-888-936-7463) or your local Conservation Warden with any additional questions. - Tim Werner, conservation warden, Crivitz
Green Bay DNR Service Center area
Manitowoc County - The county received 1-2 inches of additional rain again over the past two days. The East and West Twin Rivers are up much higher than normal. Salmon fishing on those rivers have picked up and with the cooler weather predicted the fishing activities will continue to increase. We are at the beginning of the annual fall fish run. Mosquitos are still out in full force and will probably continue to be through the weekend. Because of the mosquitos many deer hunters are taking a break and waiting for cooler weather. The marsh at Point Beach State Forest is flooded making it hard for hunters to get back to some of the remote hunting spots. If you venture out this weekend make sure to grab mud boots and mosquito spray. That will help you enjoy the great outdoors just a little bit more this weekend. - Conservation Warden Alyssa Neff-Miller Manitowoc County- Alyssa R Neff-Miller, conservation warden, Mishicot
Sturgeon Bay DNR Service Center area
Newport State Park - Rain has not been as big a factor up in northern Door as it has been in the rest of the state, but we sure have had our share. After a 4-week drought, the mosquitos are making a comeback just in time for the start of fall colors. We are bracing for a spectacular color year here. The rain came at just the right time, followed by warm days and cool nights; the perfect recipe for leaf change color. We are just starting to see a spattering of color here and there, glimpses of what is to come. The warms days have brought out some big snakes, namely western fox and garter. The eagles that nest in the park, along with their young ones, have been sighted regularly. Porcupines have been sighted, as well as a red fox. A few monarchs are still passing through on their way south, with the highest concentration over Labor Day weekend. The warm days had the meadows in the park dancing with orange and black as our winged friends fueled up for their long trip to Mexico. Nights are getting cool, a perfect reminder that fall is here. Time to enjoy the warm days and cooler nights. - Beth Bartoli, naturalist
Wautoma DNR Service Center area
Waupaca County - A decent walleye bite is starting on the Wolf River. There is decent water levels and the evenings are starting to cool down. Keep an eye out for the walleye fishing to improve as we go further into the fall months. Bowhunters are reporting decent success with good numbers of deer seen. But many early hunters are not attempting to go out due to the incredible number of mosquitos! Take precautions for these biting insects, they are very numerous. Fall colors are just around the corner - take a drive to look around. - Ted Dremel, conservation warden, Wautoma
Fall colors are at 40-50 percent in Northern Waupaca County, Waushara/Marquette more like 20-25 percent. This is going to be a very brief report as a massive mosquito hatch has driven most people indoors most hours of the day. Far northern Waupaca Co. is the exception, the skeets are tolerable. Pray for drier, cooler weather or better yet - a killer frost. - Karl Kramer, wildlife technician, Wautoma
Milwaukee DNR Service Center area
Southern Lake Michigan fisheries team report
Sheboygan County - Fishing out on the lake was very slow for many anglers this weekend. Although the water was much calmer, surface temps were averaging in the low 70s and most anglers did not see any action on the water. Anglers stuck mostly to the South Pier and tried their luck with spawn sacks and spoons, but little success was seen throughout the day. Surface waters temps were measured at 71 degrees and all of the anglers that were interviewed reported no hits. Little effort was seen on the Sheboygan River over the weekend. A handful of anglers gave spawn sacks a try near Sprecher's and the 8th St. ramp, but no fish were caught. - Jessica Jenkins, fisheries technician, Plymouth
Ozaukee County - Many of the boats coming back to the Port Washington ramp reported no success on the water. Warm surface temperatures hurt anglers' ability to catch fish this weekend, but many were still able to enjoy the last week of warm weather. The only angler that reported fish caught during the survey was using meat rigs, while other anglers attempted to use J-plugs, spoons, flashers, and flies. It was a very quiet weekend fishing on the piers. Although the water was much calmer and clearer, surface temps in the low 70s made fishing extremely difficult. Anglers mainly stuck with spawn sacks and spoons, but very little success was seen.- Jessica Jenkins, fisheries technician, Plymouth
Milwaukee County - Morning boaters targeting salmon out of the McKinley ramp were very hit or miss with quite a few returning by late morning/early afternoon with little action. Although nowhere near limiting out just yet, there were 15-20 pound kings with the occasional lake trout landed near the crowded north and south gaps using mostly spoons. A few boaters also found success heading out to deeper water, 180-plus feet, reporting fish hitting lines in the colder water 70 feet down using spoons, J-plugs, or flies. Higher fishing pressure occurred through the weekend at the McKinley Pier. Those anglers targeting salmon or brown trout found little success at the end of the pier near the gap and harborside, using a variety of baits including spoons and spawn. Surface water temperatures lakeside, range between 67-69 degrees. Low fishing pressure continues shoreside. Those few anglers targeting salmon observed by the Summerfest grounds and Lakeshore State Park continue to see little to no action. Estabrook and Kletsch Parks on the Milwaukee River are seeing higher fishing pressure, however few anglers are finding success catching salmon or trout. Those anglers targeting smallmouth bass are seeing small undersize fish as well as the occasional northern pike biting lines. Water levels are lower with normal flow and clearer waters. Water temperatures range between 69-72 degrees. The Menomonee River has low, clear water levels and normal flow in the tributary. Temperatures range between 68-74 degrees. Low fishing pressure throughout the week/weekend. The few anglers trying their luck for salmon and trout around MMSD saw little action. A few panfish were caught further upstream using live bait. Low fishing pressure continues at the Oak Creek Power Plant. Those handful of morning anglers trying their luck for salmon or trout saw very little action. Anglers fishing the discharge landed the occasional catfish or sheepshead using live bait. According to locals, the discharge at this location may be secured for the next handful of weeks. Temperatures at the end of the pier are around 66 degrees.- Reni Rydlewicz, fisheries technician, Milwaukee
Racine County - Most boaters having luck trolling spoons and J-Plugs near the mouth of the river. Others are still having luck with silver fish in 100-150 feet of water. Most fish reported are chinook with the occasional coho. Most pier anglers were having luck floating spawn and casting spoons. Some chinook have been caught with a brown or two in the mix. Chinook seem to be changing color pretty fast and seem to be staging and starting to run up the river. Not many anglers fishing the Root River but the ones who were reported a slow bite. River was pretty high throughout the week but seems to have gone back down. - Zak Feest, fisheries technician, Racine
Kenosha County - Lots on boaters are staying in the harbor jigging spoons and casting spawn sacs. Lots of Chinook have been reported caught but seem to be a day to day bite depending on wind. Lots of pier anglers were casting spoons and floating spawn. The Chinook bite seems to be pretty sporadic. Water temps warmed up a little with the east wind but seem to be dropping back down with the last report at 61degrees. Only a few anglers have been fishing the Pike River with most luck coming around the mouth. Anglers having the most luck are floating spawn on a slip bobbers or just off the bottom with a river rig. - Zak Feest, fisheries technician, Racine
Horicon DNR Service Center area
Horicon Marsh State Wildlife Area - The Horicon Marsh is just starting to see the beginning signs of migration. The folks that took part in the youth hunt reported seeing large numbers of local mallards, wood ducks and teal while afield. Mosquitoes continue to be problematic in the area. Hunters that plan to head out into the marsh on opening day are reminded to use EXTREME CAUTION while motoring up the main ditch and surrounding areas. Recent heavy rains have dislodged many cattail bogs which are now free floating and creating blockages and potential hazards. September 22, is National Hunting and Fishing Day and Horicon will host activities for kids who are interested in bowhunting and fishing from 10-11:30 a.m. Shoot a bow and arrow, safely climb into a tree stand or practice your casting. All equipment will be provided. No prior training is needed. All ages are welcome and no registration required. We hope to see you at many of the events that the education center has to offer. All events are subject to change. Free and open to the public. The Horicon Marsh Education and Visitor Center is located on Hwy. 28 between the cities of Horicon and Mayville. For more information please call Liz Herzmann at 920-387-7893 or e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org. - Jennifer Wirth, visitor services specialist
Black River Falls DNR Service Center area
Monroe County - The weather is looking pretty good for the upcoming weekend. The cooler temperatures should get the deer moving. Also with the cooler temps many are hoping the mosquito population goes down. There were some hunters out and about last weekend but with the warmer temps the deer just were not moving. The geese can still be found making their rounds in the county with a few hunters still bringing home some birds. We have seen a few ducks flying around but hopefully this cooler weather will draw a few more down from the north just in time for opener on Saturday Sept. 29. We have also been seeing a lot of monarch butterflies and caterpillars. The forests are starting to change all across the county with some maples showing off their bright red colors. Fall is going to be here officially shortly and the trees definitely are showing it! - Kyle Ziembo, conservation warden recruit, Fort McCoy