Despite cooler than average temperatures trying to hang on to winter here in Northeast Wisconsin, the Fox River from Depere to Green Bay has opened up for boat traffic. The Fox Point Launch in the City of Depere is still iced in, but that isn't stopping Walleye anglers with spring fever from getting on the river. The Metro Boat Launch at the mouth of Green Bay is wide open, so anglers are putting in there and making the journey upriver to Depere to cash in on some of the hottest Walleye action of the year for shear numbers of fish!
During the next week or two, make sure to have someone keeping an eye out for floating ice chunks, as hitting one of these can ruin a day on the river. Ice can be hard to see in the water, so I suggest going slow in the river until the ice has a chance to melt. Another thing to keep in mind when launching from the river mouth and heading upriver, is that ice can at anytime break away and stack up at the bridges. Make sure to bring a chisel or other tool that you can use to push ice away from your boat!
Fishing right now on the river is fast and furious, with 50+ fish days common, and even 100 fish in a day can be accomplished! The water clarity is good now, which is a main factor that is leading to the hot bite, as the spring rains and runoff enter the river, water clarity will become an issue, which slows the bite some because the Walleyes cannot find your bait as easily. To combat the dirty water, I recommend using bright colored jigs and gaudy plastics, and even adding a rattle to your presentation. This will help the hungry Walleyes key in on your lure in the quick moving dirty waters of the Fox River.
I expect the Fox Point Launch in Depere will be ice free sometime this week, which is much more convenient for anglers, and will also cause more pressure on the River. When fishing on the Fox River during a busy day, please be courteous to other anglers, and pay attention to what everyone around you is doing. May I also suggest that anchoring in the middle of the boats that are drifting is a bad idea, and just not necessary. There are plenty of places to anchor if you wish to fish that way, so try and avoid throwing the anchor in when there are others drifting through that area.
Fishing on the Fox River will be good for the next several weeks, as thousands of Walleyes will be congregating in the river to carry out their annual spawn near the dam in Depere. Make sure to check back here for updates on the fishing on the river!