Editor’s note: Following is a report from Rice Lake Tourism, with fishing tips provided by Jordan Marsh of Marsh Outdoors.
Cool temps at night have been letting us know that summer has come to an end. Some leaves in the area have started to show a little color, and the lake temperatures are slowly dropping. September is a great month to get on the lake fishing as the fish start to group back together and put the heavy feed bag on.
The walleye slowly vacating the soft bottom areas and are being found back on the hard bottom structure again. You can still find fish over the mud chasing big schools of baitfish, but most of these fish are now relating to some type of structure. Right now is still a good time to be aggressive with these fish on your presentations. Trolling small shad baits, jigging with plastics, or using jigging raps are go-to tactics to cover water and find the most aggressive feeding fish in the area. The fish have been holding in 18 feet of water and deeper and are holding close to the rocks on those structures. If you find sand, keep searching until you run across a good area of rock on that sand and the fish will be there.
Smallmouth bass are being caught on the tops of rocks on mid-lake humps. Casting tube jigs in green or brown have been catching fish. As we are experiencing some cooler water temps, increase the size of the lead jig head to work these baits faster and get a reaction bite. These fish are feeding very heavily so be aggressive with them to trigger them into biting. Off the edges of these mid-lake humps and over the soft bottom you can find suspended crappies. Using small lightweight jigs and a plastic tube or twister tail is a go-to for catching them. Fish the highest fish in the water column to catch the most active ones.
Good luck fishing and remember, introduce someone new into the outdoors. They will appreciate it for a lifetime.