Southeast Region: Sheboygan County - Catch rates remained low at the ramps in Sheboygan, with around two fish per boat. Lakers and rainbows were most common, with one or two chinook mixed in. Most fishermen seemed to be fishing more shallow water than the previous two weeks, anywhere from 60-100 feet of water was most common. Spoons remained the most popular lure, notably in either orange or green glow. Catch rates off of north pier increased throughout the week. Rainbows were most common, followed closely by chinook. The vast majority of these fish were caught using alewives on the lake side. Unlike previous weeks, no lake whitefish were reported. On south pier, the majority of fish caught were browns, but a few chinook were reported off of the end of the pier during the early morning. The browns averaged 5 pounds, and most were caught during the early to late morning. The harbor side had produced the majority of fish during previous weeks, but the lake side produced an equal amount this past week.
Ozaukee County - Fishermen at the piers in Port Washington reported higher catch rates off of the breakwall than reported last week. A mix of chinook, coho, and rainbows were caught, with one or two browns mixed in as well. Both the harbor side and lake side produced these fish, and alewives were just about the only bait used. Very few fishermen targeted perch this week, and none were reported. The fishing inside the harbor remained very slow, but as usual some small trout around 10 inches were caught near the utility discharge. Only one nice sized brown around 6 pounds was reported from this spot for the whole week, and it was caught on spawn. Surface water temperature inside the harbor was down to 61 degrees on Sunday, two degrees colder than last week. The ramp was closed down most of the weekend for Fish Day. Just a little north at the Amersterdam Road ramp, a few fishermen reported two fish per boat on average. It was an equal mix of chinook and coho, and most of the fish were caught in shallow water around 50-70 feet.
Milwaukee County - Scattered thunderstorms, heavy rain, and 10-15 mph north/northeast winds (gusting to 22 mph) kept fishing pressure low at the start of the week. Small craft advisories were in effect Tuesday night with waves building to 4-6 feet. The water along the lakefront was cloudy Wednesday morning with visibility less than 6-8 inches. The most productive day on the pier during the week was Friday. At least a dozen brown trout (6-10 pounds) were landed during the early morning bite. The browns were taken with spoons and alewives fished on the bottom. Both sides of the pier were loaded with alewives Friday morning. Approximately half the anglers on the pier during week were registered in the Salmon-A-Rama fishing tournament. The winning coho in the Salmon-A-Rama shoreline division was caught on McKinley Pier. The coho weighed 5.5 pounds and was caught with an alewife. Some nice catches of perch were landed from the rocky areas on the harbor side of McKinley Pier but the catch rate has been spotty. Anglers used fathead minnows, night crawlers, and jigs & plastic to land some of the perch. Small rock bass, bluegills, and northern pike were landed in McKinley Marina near the old Coast Guard Station along with a couple of keeper size perch. Small shiners and night crawlers under bobbers worked well for a couple of anglers. A few small crappies were caught and released in Lakeshore State Park during the late evening bite. Boat traffic at the McKinley ramp tapered off this week due to several days with strong winds, thunderstorms, 4-5 foot waves, and lightning. The majority of fish caught were lake trout with the numbers chinook starting to increase. Most of the boats trolled in shallower water than last week. A kayak angler landed four kings while trolling 25 feet down with glow-in-the-dark spoons in 40-55 feet of water on the opening day of Salmon-A-Rama. Some of the brown trout measured this week had spawning colors and the males were starting to develop a kype. A 25.58-pound lake trout won the 2015 Salmon-A-Rama grand prize on the final day. Another cold front with strong northeast winds and heavy rain moved through the area at the start of the week. The water along the shoreline was cloudy/turbid up to a half mile offshore. A couple of 2-3 pound brown trout were landed on the Cupertino pier this week by perch anglers. A couple of smallmouth bass were landed on the long pier at the Coast Guard station this week. The boat harbor and the mouth of the Oak Creek are loaded with large carp. Anglers on the Oak Creek Power Plant fishing pier have been targeting warm water fish (perch and bluegills) with night crawlers and minnows but the catch rate has been low. Large numbers of carp and gobies have moved into the shallow water around the pier over the past 4-5 weeks. The carp are in the power plant discharge chute and have been cleaning the green algae off the sides of the pier. Fishing pressure on the South Metro Pier continues to be low with the majority of anglers looking for perch. The majority of boats out of Bender Park have been targeting perch on the south side of the Oak Creek Power Plant and on the boils at the South Shore Water Treatment Plant. Boaters out of Bender had good luck targeting kings Sunday morning. The boat launch at South Shore Park reopened on Tuesday, July 14. The boats out of South Shore averaged 2-3 fish per boat during the week. One boat landed five kings while trolling with white and gold spoons, straight out from South Shore, 25-30 feet down, in 60-90 feet of water on Saturday. All five of the kings were landed before 6:45 a.m.
Racine County - Salmon a Rama is over and boating traffic is returned to normal. As well as the fleets of anglers, large numbers of pleasure boaters were out over the weekend in order to escape the July heat, leading to very high boating traffic. Boats are still reporting a wide variety of species caught, with many of the anglers fishing in less than 150 feet catching browns, rainbows, coho and chinook occasionally. The most fish per hour was clearly the anglers who were willing to travel at least 4 or 5 miles out in the lake to target lake trout. Boats staying closer to shore reported the best success catching fish while trolling under 100 feet early in the morning, and then following the fish out to deeper water as the sun comes up. Fishing has been best very early in the morning, with bites coming sporadically throughout the rest of the day. Orange on spoons appeared to be an effective color and a favorite of many boats, while flies and spoons of blue or green mixed with silver have been popular as well. Fishing pressure at the piers in Racine was very high throughout the past week, although catch rates appeared to change little from the past month or so. By far the most common fish caught off the pier this past week has been brown trout, biting in the evening. Anglers have reported the most success on casting artificial bait such as spoons and flicker shads and by soaking alewives, with slightly more fish biting on live bait. Fishing pressure along the shoreline inside the harbor and on north pier is still at typical levels. Perch fishing has also changed little with most anglers reporting no perch, and only a few fish biting extremely early in the morning. The best fish per hour rate while fishing in the harbor seems to be from the small wooden pier behind the north pier, where some anglers have reported success while targeting northern pike.
Kenosha County - Fishing pressure from the Kenosha boat ramp has been steady throughout this week, and large numbers of pleasure boaters escaping the July heat over the weekend produced a good deal of boat traffic. Almost every boat coming back in is still reporting catches under their limit. Anglers have reported success with a large variety of species, although the most productive fishing appears to be coming form the boats traveling into deep water and targeting lake trout. Other species have been biting intermittently throughout the day, although action has been steadier in Racine, where the majority of anglers have been launching. Fishing inside the Kenosha harbor has been rather hit or miss this week, with decent numbers of fish biting one night, and nothing biting another. Most angler pressure and success has been recorded along the rocks behind Best Western, where browns and a few rainbows have been biting in the evening. Anglers have reported bites on a variety of bait such as casting spoons, flicker shads, and using tube jigs. Perch fishing has changed little over this past week as most caught fish requiring an angler putting in a few good hours of fishing. The best time for perch has been reported to be around 5 a.m., just before the sun comes up.