What an awesome christening to our open water season on Vermilion. Squeezing into opener at the edge of our seats has made things interesting but I anticipate normal patterns to be setting in for good now. As of today, surface water temps sit between the 58-63 degree range and will continue to climb.


As many ways as you can think of, you can surely catch them right now. Live bait rigging is always a staple, but don’t shy away from the shallow water opportunities this time presents, especially with the rapid warmth of water temps due to late ice off and beautiful days. Fish will be mostly on your primary structure. Jig/minnow combos and lindy rigs in the 18-26ft depths have put good numbers of eater-sized fish in the boat. But my favorite bites have come shallower with some wind. I prefer to run live bait rigs in the 9-13ft range, and on low pressure or lower light, cast stickbaits in the really shallow stuff.


Fishing has really turned on this week for northerns. Casting jerkbaits or small glide baits in shallow reeds will catch larger fish, especially on warm and clear days. Casting suckers or larger chubs in cabbage beds of 5-7ft will also catch plenty of pike! Trolling stickbaits along shorelines has also been very productive.


Your northernmost coves and bays are the fastest warming, and are holding the majority of your crappies at the moment. Casting plastics under pencil floats and slowly jigging them back is deadly when the ultra shallow water bite starts to emerge as the lake warms.
Jarek Wujkowski
Rodsbent Guide Service