Breaking down a Lake

Lake Basics

When fishing a lake there are many factors to take into consideration. Lakes provide the opportunity to fish both shallow and deep water depending on the species of fish you are after. The state of Wisconsin offers thousands of lake fishing opportunities. Lake Michigan, one of our great lakes offers a diverse fishery that many people take advantage of. We are truly blessed with the amazing fisheries we have here in Wisconsin. As a fishing guide and competitive bass angler, I’ve spent countless hours on the water weekly. I primarily fish southern Wisconsin lakes and have seen many situations. It’s also important to realize there are different scientific names to each lake you fish. Generally, before fishing a new lake, I like to have a map of the contour and break down of a lake to help me get a visual beforehand. Electronics also play a critical role when locating fish and finding structure within a lake.

Inland Lakes

One of my favorite inland lakes to fish here in southern Wisconsin is Lake Geneva. Lake Geneva continues to produce some amazing fishing for multi-species action. I have been fishing Lake Geneva since I was a child and continue to learn to allot about the lake to this day. As one of the deepest lakes in Wisconsin, Lake Geneva offers the chance at catching lake trout and brown trout. This lake reaches depths of around 100-140 feet of water. This lake is full of springs and cold water discharges making for a healthy ecosystem for fish to thrive. Lake Geneva has been known for its smallmouth bass population and thriving northern pike fishery. Wisconsin offers many great fishing opportunities when it comes to fishing an inland lake. By doing a bit of research online you are sure to find a few lakes near you capable of producing solid fish. Breaking down the lake is just half of the fun when it comes to catching fish.

Lake Formats

When fishing a lake the first thing I ask myself is; what are the species of fish that I choose to target. From there I can decide the structure that I want to locate to find that particular species of fish. When targeting walleye out of a typical lake system I want to locate sand, rock, and gravel bars. Walleye seem to hold tight to this type of structure in most lakes. Depending on the lake, weeds or rocks can consume the majority of the water making fishing difficult. Some lakes I have fished in the past have been totally choked with weeds during the late summer months, narrowing your focus to weed-less lures. On the other hand, I have fished lakes that are deep, clear, and cold making for a finesse fishing format. Every lake presents a different opportunity and fishing approach. It pays to utilize your electronics and do your homework before entering a lake to be prepared for what to expect on the water.


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