Regional Reports-Midwest

Lake Michigan

Along the shorelines and in the harbors of Lake Michigan, browns upward of 15 pounds are becoming common, and fish exceeding 25 and even 30 pounds are making the bragging boards each fall. Key to this surge is the introduction of a unique strain of Salmo trutta, the seeforellen, found originally in Eastern Europe. Boat fishermen troll stickbaits such as Rapalas and Smithwick Rogues. Harbor fishermen prefer Crocodile, Kastmaster, Little Cleo and Mepps Syclops spoons along with stickbaits. If all else fails, try baby alewives, smelt and spawn. Among the top tributaries for monster browns are the Root, Sheboygan and Milwaukee rivers. Big browns also roam the shores of Algoma, Manitowoc and Two rivers. Contact: Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (414-263-8500).