Mid Summer update

July 29, 2014
Dam 7/28/2014

Dam 7/28/2014



July 27, 2014… the past month we have had some great weather and excellent fishing.  water levels have dropped ..Although still higher than past years for late July. Walking out on the Dam is not recommended for the people who enjoy doing that this time of the year for the strength of the water flow over the Dam could take you off-balance. Overall the higher than normal water levels have not impacted fishing with exception of the later opener.

The late opener delay the water temps from warming up which in turn delayed fish from getting into their summer patterns.  So the only impact if any is fish were still being caught in shallow areas that are normally associated with spring fishing. So far this year we seen some big Northern ( up to 42 inches) caught over shallow water until about the last week of june .  Once the mayflies started their annual hatch ( around the first  week of July)  fishing over deep open water took off with Cisco schooled up tight feeding on the Mayflies so that meant the larger predators ( Musky and Pike ) were concentrated also in those same areas cashing in on the unlimited food source.  Guests fishing with large shallow running crank baits and running them right below the  surface over deep water in Niles and Frazer Bay were catching big Northern and Musky consistently.

One the largest Musky of the season was caught trolling by Nolan Spregeler.  His Fish measured 55 inches. Nolan is an experienced Musky fisherman and caught several musky the week he was here.  Guests fishing right in front of the Dam/Lodge for smallmouth and Largemouth bass have enjoyed some good action. One family( Lou Oine family from Elgin Illinois) had an afternoon where they caught and released over 40 bass right in front of the Dam. Guests that come up in early July to target musky had excellent fishing.  Rick Becker and son Sammy from Illinois,  caught 8 muskies and several large Northern during their week. Sammy broke his personal best with a 50 inch musky.photo

In addition he caught a 42 inch Northern…he and his dad put their time in fishing and it pays off for them. Another Father/son team Jim Bolman/Jackson Bolman had a great week of catching limits of walleye, Bass and northern.

Matt Modleski

Matt Modleski

Bob Bronke and crew from Downers Grove , Illinois also caught 8 musky. One guy their group was up on his first trip to Vermilion and caught 2 muskies both 51 inchers.

Bronke Crew

Bronke Crew

Jim Smith from St. Paul Mn…was up for their annual family trip both of his sons Robbie and Danny caught 49 inchers.  In addition, they also boated several large Northern. Bass fishing for both Smallmouth and Largemouth seems to be getting better and better. The Rusty Crayfish which we ( Resort Association) have concerns over is actually providing a great source of food for the smallmouth. We hear from everyone that the smallmouth are full of Rusty Crayfish when they catch them. The good news it seems ( my observations only) the Rusty are being kept in balance by the healthily Bass population for we are seeing good weed bed growth in the bays that we had concern the Rusty might be taking out.  It still warrants watching in the years to follow but right now it seems to be ok.  Walleye fishing has really picked up in the last two weeks . Walleyes  are being caught on standard Crawler harnesses and slip bobbers with Leeches.  Key areas this past week were mid lake rock humps and channels with gravel. Perch population is Walleye are full of 2-3 perch.

Nancy Welsch

Nancy Welsch

Nancy Welsh from Williams Bay WI. caught a beautiful 27 inch walleye fishing with her son and grandson.   This summer fishing off the docks  has been excellent..Kids can catch nice Sunfish  anytime of the day. Lots of nice Bass are being caught in front of the Dam for the  water levels

remain higher than normal which means more water flow /current over the Dam which the Bass love.   Last week the fishing remained good.. John and Sue Haydek  and their son Chris from  Knoxville TN), came up fished each day with guides. They had an excellent week…limited out on walleyes with Guide Tim Lescarbeau

Sue Haydek

Sue Haydek

They also made a trip into Trout Lake with Rob Bryers and caught walleye, smallmouth and enjoyed a great shore lunch… They caught and released a  bunch of  nice smallmouth with Guide Mike Estrin and ended their week fishing with Tim Lecarbeau ( Bucky) and

caught some trophy walleye. The highlight of their trip their son Chris caught and released a 41 inch Northern that grabbed a perch he was reeling back in.

Chris Haydek

Chris Haydek


Summer is flying by and we look forward to another busy fall.  Thank you again to all our guests that provide us the business that allows us the opportunity to keep the tradition of  Vermilion Dam Lodge going .


Spring/Early Summer Update

June 19, 2014


After a long.. and I mean Looooong  winter we finally lost our ice around

the opener (May 9th). Water levels started high with periods of rain on and off for weeks.

As of today the water levels remain higher than normal. The high water has only

impacted our ability to get in out of the boathouse with 2 inches of water covering the concrete.

Overall I would guess to say the water level is a foot above normal averages for this

time of the year.

Spring projects for us was completion of our shop for boat repairs, boat renovations and several cabin upgrades.

One long overdue project was expanding /upgrading our fish house. One group of fisherman from Dubuque Iowa ( Tommy Ball Crew)

that have been coming Up for 17 years have requested a larger fish cleaning house for several years and

we were excited to surprise them when they showed up the first weekend of June. The new fish house is

now double in size and can accommodate several fisherman cleaning at the same time.008


Walleye fishing started slow for the opener, but picked up by the first week of June.  We have

not seen Mayflies so far but several bug hatches with the high amounts of rain.  Mosquitos have been

rough right at dark…definitely have to wear your bug spray if going out in the evening.  Walleyes are now taking crawlers and leaches

in the their normal summer locations ( weed edges sand bars). Best bait still remains a

single lindy rig (number 6 red hook) and half a crawler.  Bass fishing has been excellent since

Memorial weekend. Both largemouth and smallmouth still are hot. Best baits are tube jigs and the old

standard Sinko..in Pearl Color.  Fisherman reporting seeing large schools of perch so perch colored lures are doing

well. photo

Northern Pike fishing has been excellent this year with several 40 inch class fish taken.  Dave Olson and friends from Minneapolis caught

several large pike Memorial weekend including a beautiful 41 incher.  With the late ice out fishing in shallow water remained excellent from

about May 23- until the middle of the first week of June.  Smallmouth bass have finished spawning with water temps now into

The mid 60s. Both smallmouth and largemouth fishing was excellent last week. Three different groups of fisherman from Indy(Roy and

Crew, Cain , and Neese family)  All reported fantastic Bass fishing for both Smallmouth and Largemouth.  Most of the fish taking tube jigs

spinner baits and Sinkos.


Last Monday morning we had a special guest stop by the resort….Al Linder (Angler’ s Edge  and In Fisherman)   stop in for Breakfast with

one of the local guides Bill Rosner.  Bill was shooting a show with Al on the Vermilion River.  It was an honor to meet him giving what

he has contributed to the sport of fishing over the years.  His personality is just what you see on the TV shows… very open, friendly and

willing to share his knowledge with anyone that walks up to ask him a question.  Everyone here really appreciated the opportunity to meet

and talk with him.


On a sad note we lost a very close friend this past week…Steve Eisentrager from Blane Mn, .  Steve and his wife Mary have been guests

at the resort since 2007. Steve died last Friday after a battle with A rare form of cancer. We have had the pleasure  getting to know Steve

and Mary very well over the last several  years. Following his retirement a few years back he asked me if we could use help in

the spring to get open and again in fall during our larger events like the Walleye School and Musky outing. For the next years

they would come up for up a month at a time to help with whatever we needed. Both Steve and Mary are great people and they

really fit in great here at the resort. Steve always had a great sense of humor and was always willing to help anyone that needed

help.  We will miss him and really appreciated the opportunity to have got to know him.  2803248




Next blog update ..will be come much quicker….. Ed


Summer recap/fall update

October 10, 2013

June…fishing remained good through the month… the hot crappie bite in early June ended about the second week as water temps rose. Overall weather was stable most of the month and water levels normal . Walleye fishing was consistent on the common spots close to the resort using lindy rigs and crawlers.  The week of June 22-29th we had several trophy walleye caught including a 29 incher caught by guest Brad Wetzell. Musky fishing did not pick up until mid July but we had one very nice musky( 53 inchers) caught by  16 year old guest David Cluchey. David was fishing with his dad ( Joe Cluchey).  Bass fishing started great in June never slowed down for both Smallmouth and largemouth. . Many large Smallmouth around 18-20 inches caught throughout the month.  Largemouth seem to be averaging around 3.5 pounds and very agreesive.  Soft baits like rubber crayfish in red or orange and the standard fat rubber worms hooked wacky style continue to produce tons of  Bass ( both Smallmouth and Largemouth) . The rusty Crayfish have become a key source of food for the bass..which we love to hear for Rusty Crayfish in large numbers can be harmful to the lake for they destroy weedbeds.

 July…Walleye patterns remained consistent with June…fish were being caught along weedlines with adjacent sand drop offs .  Leeches not used much this season for they were hard to get this year anywhere in Minnesota due to the late ice out. Night Crawlers were used more than anything by Guides and VLD Guests. Largemouth fishing was excellent thoughout july with most of the fish being caught close to the resort in the thick weedbeds of  Dago Bay and along the north shore of Wolf Bay. My cousin Scott Tausk of Western Springs, Illinois was up for a visit and caught a 53 inch musky below the damPic 121….on a Sinko ( Rubber worm). Scott released it. He also reported seeing a larger fish in the same area ..we suspect/hope it’s the musky released by Marty in 2010 at which time that fish was 55 inches. If that is the same fish…it tells us there is pleanty of food in that little one mile section of river and that 55 incher might be 57 plus and still living. The first week of July a huge 56 inch Musky was found dead on the surface by a VDL Guest in Head-of-the Lakes Bay. The fish was still fresh with not a single mark on it ..(including no hook marks in its mouth). The guest brought the fish back to the resort. I had contacted our local fisheries Manager to see if they could age the fish and get an idea of how long it takes for a fish to grow to trophy size in Vermilion . Here The email response from our Fisheries Mgr. D. Williams :

From: Williams, Duane G (DNR)

To: Ed Tausk

Sent: Monday, September 30, 2013 9:51 AM

Subject: Muskie age

Hi Ed, I finally got around to cleaning up and looking at the muskie backbone and clithera bone you sent me from that 56 inch muskie.  As close as I can tell, it is around 14 years old.  The problem is that older large fish grow so slowly the age rings are very close together and you sometimes lose them on the outside edge.  So that might be off a year or two.  I will see if the DNR muskie guru in Bemidiji wants to take a look.  Thanks for getting these for me.  I have never looked a cross section of vertebrate before so that was pretty interesting.  Good luck fishing this fall.


 The Largest Musky caught by a VDL guest this summer was a 56.75 inch fish caught by VDL guest Ben Rohan. 57-2Ben told me he caught that fish in a shallow weedbed area. Ben comes up often and is an excellent Musky Fisherman. July 17th  We had our annual take a kid fishing day on Lake Vermilion.  This year we had close to 100 kids participate. This a great local event that provides an opportunity for kids to get out fishing for the first time for no cost.  Our local Guide League, Sportsman Club, Fortune Bay Casino and Golf Course, Resort Assocation and many other local Businesses and organizations all pitch in to make this happen.  In addition, it requires voulunteers to provide their time and boats to get kids out fishing.  VDL had four boats with VDL guests/staff participating by taking kids out fishing.  This event supports getting kids introduced to fishing for there is very disturbing trend across the country where younger generations are not getting into fishing and hunting.  Fishing and hunting licenses revenues have been dropping and combined with Federal cuts in fish and wildlife funding..puts a lot the states in a position to have no choice but cut programs that supports our natural resources.  Minnesota raised the cost of fishing licenses last year for the first time in many years to address this issue….so our local /annual take a kid fishing event is a  great way for our lake community to do their part in addressing the problem.  

 August was a excellent month overall for fishing.  The first two weeks we usually see a lot returning families for the weather and fishing are usually both very good at this time..  This year was no  Exception .  Darin and Jenny Mullikin came up for two weeks and  again had great walleye fishing on Night Crawlers.   They know the lake well and never have a problem finding walleye.  We seen some big northern pike caught in august including Sammy Becker’s 40 incher. Sammy and his dad caught several big Northern trolling in the early evening  over open water for musky.    Smallmouth Bass continued to be hot all of august.  

 September ..Early September we had several groups of musky fisherman. One group of four flew over from Sweeden for a five night stay dedicated to only musky fishing. They had hired two Local guides and boated three nice musky  51, 47 and 41 inches.  Another group ( Mark Lazare) and friends tried Vermilion for musky for the first time.  Mark on the second day caught 45 and 48 incher.   Walleye fishing was average to good for most of the month. The second week of September seemed to be the best week for walleye with several guests getting their limits and reporting good fishing.  September 26 we held our second annual WalleyeSchool featuring instructors /walleye pros  Johnnie Candle and Doc Sonar ( Bruce Sampson). vdl10We had 31 attend the class . Weather was warmer with some high winds..but a lot of nice fish caught. The class improved this year even more with Doc and Johnnie adding more one-on –one time with the students in the student’s boats ( dockside) to help  demonstrate proper use of electronics. Water temps today ( oct.9th) are mid to high 50s. Getting ready for our annual fall musky outing starting on Thursday. This year expecting 50 people to attend. We have several great speakers lined up including the local DNR Fisheries Mgr.   Walleye fishing this week has been excellent..fish being caught on crankbaits ( perch colored) along the weedlines.  Large schools of perch are up against the weeds and the walleye ( especially larger older fish) are right in their feeding on them. Last night my son Austin home from College for a break caught and released several large walleye with the largest a 27 incher.

Crappie gone wild

June 9, 2013

June 8th, 2013

DSC05846Water temps today around 59 degrees. Fishing this past week really improved with the warmer water. Crappie action exploded with several groups going home with their limit of crappie that ranged from 12- 16 inches. It seemed only a couple of bays were producing all the fish.  Most of the fish were caught on slip bobbers and minnows fishing right up against the bank.DSC05844  As the water temps got up in the higher fifties the smallmouth have started moving in shallow for the spawn.  Brenda and Mike Schurhamer of St. Paul Mn caught and released a hugh smallmouth 20 inch/ 5 lb . OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Musky action was fantastic last week with over 20 muskies being caught by resort guests. One group ( Dan Starmach) caught and released 8 muskies during their week stay with the largest 48 inches.  Several resort guests reported shallow water encounters with musky.  Most of the musky being seen and caught were within a 1 mile of the resort.  Clayton Stover ( age 10) from Indiania caught a 49 inch Musky .DSCN0445  Northern Pike fishing was excellent with the largest of the week being 39 inches.  Both the Pike and Musky were hitting small baits ( spoons and spinners) in water less than 6 ft. The weed beds have not started coming up in most areas due to the late\ice out and lack of sunny days.  Walleye fishing was hit and miss the last two weeks . Some of the guest caught limits of walleye fishing the local Guides. One group of  long time repeat guests ( Pat Blackburn group) caught a variety of sized walleye during their stay with the largest 27 . 5 incher.  They spent most of their time fishing the channel/pinch ( 1 mile south of the resort). Pan fish are now showing up around the docks and for some reason this year we are seeing guests catch a lot of Jumbo Perch.  Normally we see Jumbos late in the fall when the walleye fisherman are fishing deep holes…but the last two weeks several guests were catching perch 7- 11 inches.  The next week we are expecting some great smallmouth action as they move into the shallow rock areas to spawn.

May 24,2013…..Memorial Day update

May 24, 2013


 After a very long winter and a ton of snow..the lake finally shed it’s Ice just after the fishing opener may 14th.  Fishing started out slow for walleye given the very cold water and walleye spawn still underway.  The first week of fishing was overall very slow. Many of the fisherman at the resort were fishing shallow water and found limited success. One group that comes every year in early may ( Novak/Bickford crew)  found walleyes in deep water and caught several limits.  One group pulled their boats and jumped into another local lake which was warmer due to being shallower and had some great Largemouth Bass action. Last Saturday a long time guest ( Ed Smith) took his two son-in laws into a local portage lake and found 52 degree water. The fishing was excellent they caught pike up 14 pounds, smallmouth up to 4 lbs and several walleye from 14 to 20 inches.  All the fish were caught casting Rapalas .  Today May 24th…our water temps are about 51 degrees and after the first two days of continuous Sunshine we are expecting fishing to really pick up.  If I had to guess we will see a good crappie bite starting in the next week and will last for at least two weeks. Water levels are up but not at a level for concern ( no water coming into the boat house).  The month of April we had record snow fall and this month a lot of rain so we should not expect much fire danger for the woods during that critical spring period between winter melt off until trees green  up again.  This week we have a lot of fisherman coming in and looking forward to the start of busy season.



November 14th update

November 14, 2012

Water temps in the channel right in front of the Lodge around 36 degrees. Every am we are running boats tied to the docks in gear to move water to keep the channel open so the fisherman can get out on the lake. Last weekend we had a good number of musky fisherman with only a couple finding success.  One group ( Andy Hutter and friends) caught three nice musky ( 55.5 , 53.5 and 49.5).

Andy Hutter with a 53.5 incher

Several other groups spent some long hours trolling from am to dark with only pike hitting.  This time of the year is not easy fishing..its very cold, usually windy and you put some long hours in with hope of connecting with one of the Giant Muskies that lurk in Vermilion .  A great example is a group that comes up from Wisconsin ( Chris Tritt and freinds) There are six hard core ‘good’ musky fisherman in their group. Last year here they boated several large musky. These guys fish a lot of lakes close to their home and catch a lot of musky. They come to Vermilion for a shot at catching a fish of a lifetime.  This year they did not boat any musky for the their group..had several hooked..but  nothing boated. One of the three boats had the opportunity to see a follow from a  monster musky that was so big that they could not even guess its size and weight only could say it was the largest musky they have ever seen.  They said seeing that fish makes it all worth the effort of coming to Vermilion.  My estimate of the lake freezing over by Nov. 14 was way off…the weather forcasted this week should provides another week of fishing. Marty and I are closing up cabins and getting some fishing time in before ending the season.

57 incher caught by VDL guest

November 5, 2012

November 5th….water temps in the wolf bay section near the resort is down to 39 degrees..skim ice formed yesterday am ..boats leaving the resort had to break through 1/8 inch of ice to get out.  Whitefish spawn is in full swing on this end of the lake. Cisco are just starting to show up in the nets.  We have had several nice musky caught by VDL guests the last week.  One group of four musky fisherman caught a 54 incher and 57 incher…both fish were caught casting.  The 57 incher was caught by Justin Caslavka. The day he caught the fish his fishing partner had to run to town so Justin went out on his own for a few hours. When he hooked the fish he was near the resort and our employee Marty happen to be right near him…Justin not only landed the fish himself.. but  was wearing a small video camera on his head  and filmed the entire boatside hit, fight and netting. Marty came over to help measure the fish and take a few photos before release. Congrats to Justin for such a great job landing the fish..clean release . This week we have musky fisherman all week…our hope is the channel stays free of ice and allow at least another week of fishing during this prime period.

Justin Caslavka with his 57 incher

October update

October 30, 2012

September weather and fishing was consistent with other years.. The first two weeks were mild with a couple of cold fronts. Walleyes were caught most of the first part of the month with summer tactics…( crawler harnesses and lindy rigs) by mid month water temps dropped quickly and fish were being caught on minnows in deeper late fall spots. Great bass fishing continued through September. Smallmouth season did closed on September 9th but many were still caught and released by walleye fisherman as they moved deeper to the mid lake deep reefs and rock piles.  Musky fishing was slower than years past for mid to late September. Even though we had several groups of dedicated, experienced musky fisherman…only a few fish were caught the last two weeks of the month.  

Sept. 20-23 rd we had our first walleye school  featuring walleye pros Bruce Samson ( Doc Sonar) and tournament pro/educator Johnnie Candle. Doc is well known for his DVDS and classes he teaches around the country on electronic use.. He specializes in Loworance Products. Doc’s holds classes throughout the country teaching basic understanding of sonar principals to advanced use of the side imagining and down scanning.  Johnnie Candle top tournament pro who also teaches for Scheel’s Sporting Stores classes on walleye techniques. Doc and Johnnie teamed up to provide an excellent school that combined classroom with on-the-water fishing..  The theme of the school was to provide the class with the process of how Walleye Pros approach any given body of water to tournament fish. That included collecting information about the lake before you get there ( DNR, maps, Bait Shops, etc) combined with using your electronics to identify key areas and develop a plan to catch more walleye.  One of the highlights of the school was when Doc and Johnnie dedicated time on the dock  where Doc and Johnnie got into the boats of the students and provided one-on-one instruction of proper use of the student’s boat electronics and equipment.  The School went great, everyone seemed to love the classes, meals and gained a lot of knowledge. Also Doc and Johnnie provide bags of tackle from their sponsors in addition to the raffle prizes we had  donated with Tackle, and Equipment.  We are planning to have this same school again in 2013 the weekend of September 26th-29th.  Doc and Johnnie are true Professional walleye fisherman who both have a gift to teach. We are honored to work with them and look forward to the 2013 school.

 October 12-14 we had our 11thannual Larry Ramsell Musky Outing.

Ben Peterson 54 incher

We had another excellent turnout with over 50 people partipating.  Again we had a mix of very experienced musky fisherman to people that are new to the sport. We always encourage sharing information and make this outing  a non-competive event.   What really makes this event is the guides that participate are not only excellent fisherman but willing to share techniques and help people gain more knowledge. The guides this year were Luke Ronnestrand, Bob Benson, Dusty Carlson, Matt Seifert, Ben Olson, Brett Erickson ( Throne Brothers)  plus Larry Ramsell.  The conditions were better than past outings with water temps already into high 40s . There were 20 Musky caught( four over 50 inches)

JB Ellis with a 52 incher

  over the outing and two large Northern.  The Nightly presentations were excellent following dinner. The first night Luke Ronnestrand talked about how to get ready before fishing..talked about using Electronics to locate bait fish before even throwing a cast..he also spent time talking about late fall bait fish movements and how to fish any given spot thoroughly.

Clay Heller 41 incher


name   date length wind time of day structure lure comments
Phil Lieven   11-Oct 38 nw 11:20   point jake musky
Jay Lievan 11-Oct 32 nw 12:20   rock shore jake Northern
bob Benson 11-Oct 44 nw 8:00 AM   18′ flat bull dawg musky
Robie F   12-Oct 44 sw 10:45 AM   Island/reef madussa musky
Robie F   12-Oct 47 ssw 3:00 PM   Island/reef madussa musky
Rauno   12-Oct 46 sw 6:15 PM   rock shore black dawg musky
Morgan   12-Oct 49.5 sw 1:00 PM   shallow rks white dawg musky
D. Reilly   12-Oct 42 sw 2:00pm   reef dawg musky
J.B. Ellis   12-Oct 52 sw 2:10 PM   point jake musky
C. Heller   13-Oct 41 se 12:30   rock shore dawg musky
B. Peterson 13-Oct 54 se 6:15 PM   rock shore dawg musky
Stephan   13-Oct 46.5 se 8:00 AM   east end dawg musky.
P.lieven   13-Oct 37 se 4:00 PM   big bay jake Northern
B. Bronke   13-Oct 41 se 1:00 PM   rock shore dawg musky
Dan Reilly   13-Oct 44 se 11:20   big bay dawg musky
B.Benson   13-Oct 40 se 5:30   east end dawg musky
Matt Seifert 13-Oct 51 se 12:15   Saddle dawg Musky
Patrik   13-Oct 50.5 se 10;00   rock shore dawg musky
Patrik   13-Oct 45 se 6;30   reef madussa musky
Stephan   13-Oct 48.5 se 12:15   rock shore dou.dawg musky

 The second night we had a guide panel that opened up questions on late fall fishing. Everyone loved that format for they could ask questions at will and get answers from four top guides that spend a lot of hours on the water.  The last night LarryRamsell gave an excellent presentation on what truly is the current World Record Musky. Larry has countless hours researching this subject for his books so his presentation was full of facts and information and kept everyone’s interest for the entire discussion. Larry also spent time discussing the proper way to measure fish and proper calculations on weight. We raffled off four guide trips and  raffles of lures, rod, reels and equipment.Today October 30th  we have water temps still hanging around 43 degrees.  Over the weekend ( oct 26-28th) we a lot of musky fisherman. The largest was a 52 incher….one fisherman/guide Ben Olson boated six mid 40 fish in one day.    The whitefish Spawn has started and we expect excellent fishing until ice up. If I had to guess we won’t see ice until around Nov 14th.  Here is a photo I took this am of a couple whitefish that were netted…vs…a 2 lb Bull Dawg..this photo makes it very clear why we use such large baits in late fall…the Whitefish on the right is a 21 incher….

2 lb Bull Dawg vs average spawing sized Whitefish

Late Summer/Early Fall update

September 9, 2012

 Early Fall  Update  

 Overall the summer weather has been warm and stable…We had a big storm on July 4th bringing the heaviest rain of the summer. Since then we have received isolated periods of rain just enough to keep the trees greened up and the lake levels normal.   Lake temps today (Sept 9th)  are 70  degrees.  The lake has taken on an algae bloom but nothing out of the normal for this time of the year. The channel in front of the resort has been producing nice walleyes for the guests trolling jointed and rattle type lures in 10 of water.Several of the local guides are reporting catching walleye off deeper flats in Frazer and NilesBay in 18-25 ft. some are using lead core line with crank baits. Bass fishing has been excellent for both smallmouth and largemouth.  Rubber baits that imitate Crayfish continues to work well (especially the baits that are red in color).

Northern Pike fishing has been a little out of the normal. We are just not seeing the Northern in the weed beds where we usually do…could be the Northern are feeding on the rusty Crayfish like the bass on rock structures. We have seen some big Northern caught again this summer with several in the 40 inch class. The largest reported was caught yesterday with a 45 inch Northern caught by Vermilion Dam guest musky fishing.

 In Early August Russ Kobel and crew from Illinois came back and had a great week including one monster walleye of 32 inches…(The largest walleye to date at VDL) .

Musky fishing has been excellent all summer…one noticeable difference this summer is the pattern seems to be smaller bladed spinner baits. This may not hold true as we transition into fall but most of the fish reported are smaller bladed spinner baits like a Shumway Flashers.  

 Fall colors have already started showing…The temps at night are dropping into the low 40s and leaving fog on the water in the morning. Water levels have dropped some for lack of rain but water is still flowing over the dam. We are expecting full fall colors within the next 10 days. 

Update 9/12/….Guide Luke Ronnestrand had a party out today…boated 51 inch in the afternoon…came in went back out just before dark and boated a 55.5 inch Monster….

July 25, 2012

Mid summer update

Joe Cluchey and family catching bass just above the Dam

Unlike most of the country our area experienced good amounts of rain in June bringing up the lake level above normal levels and allowed everything to green up nicely.  Fishing has been excellent so far this summer.  June started with limited crappie action for the window seemed very narrow ( only lasting about two weeks) but walleye and bass fishing was great in June. Several trophy walleyes were caught in June including several pushing 30 inches. Mid to late June following the mayfly Hatch provided some great open water trolling for Muskies. Guide Luke Ronnestrand who stays at the resort all summer had several fantastic days including one evening his guests caught two 51 inchers and one 55 inch Musky.  The bite over open water was mostly trolling large crank baits just below the surface.  The far west end of the lake seemed to have the most action.  Several VDL guests caught trophy musky during this period trolling. One monster 53 inch musky was caught by Hunter Burchfield on June 24 fishing With Guide Luke Ronnestrand.  Bass fishing has been excellent again this year for both largemouth and smallmouth. The Rusty Crawfish that are now showing up on this end of the lake are providing great food for the bass because many of the guests are reporting the bass are spitting up crawfish but also the bass are very healthy in size. If I had to guess I would say the ‘average’ largemouth on Vermilion is 17 inches and around 3 lbs.  The mayfly hatch never really had a huge impact on the walleye fishing in June..the hatch was early this year around the second week they started showing up but fishing remain consistent.  July fishing so far has been excellent for walleyes with a lot of harvestable fish ( under 18 inch slot )  being caught right near the resort. The usual summer pattern of fishing sand drop offs adjacent to weed edges with crawler harnesses is working well.  The second week of July Bob Bronke from Downers Grove was up a group of  10 musky fisherman…they did very well catching 8 muskies from 38 to 50inches.

Bob Bronke with a nice 50 inch musky




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