By Ben Gruber
In between going to work and getting the farm ready for the cattle to come home, I managed to sneak away for a day of fishing last week. I called up my buddy Josh and told him of a friendly fishing tournament some of the guys from work put together. Josh is never one to miss out on a fishing tourney, and since he has two boats, he is my first choice for a partner.
The tournament is not until Thursday, but since neither of us have ever fished the Biron Flowage before, Josh wanted to get out there. Apparently he wants to take home the giant prize money, all of $270. So I put aside the ever-growing list of things I need to get done, and we headed out to the flowage.
Biron Flowage is the Wisconsin River flowage created by the Biron Dam just above Wisconsin Rapids, so it is close to home. At just over 2,000 acres, it is a relatively small lake. Typical of the flowages of the Wisconsin River, it is a multi-species fishery, home to largemouth and smallmouth bass, pan fish, muskies, northern pike, and plenty of catfish. Weeds, rocks, flooded timber, and the river channel all provide structures that hold fish.
The tournament has a six-fish limit, which can be either smallmouth or largemouth bass. The team that brings in the heaviest total wins with a penalty for any fish that are not alive at weigh-in.
We covered a lot of the water in a hurry, wanting to get a feel for the lake in the short amount of time that we had. We found some fish, especially the smallmouth. We searched high and low and did not find too many largemouths. Hopefully on tournament day we can change that, with bragging rights on the line that are far more important than the prize money.
We had to dodge a few storms that rolled through. It is always fun dodging lightning while in a metal boat on the open water. We did manage to make it to Rusty’s Backwater Saloon and wait out one downpour while enjoying a burger.
Josh tied into a monster crappie tossing a bass jig, and I managed a few decent smallmouths on a spinner. I am not too confident that we would have finished near the top with our catches on that day, even though we did manage six legal fish. Hopefully come Thursday we can improve a bit and take home the title.
I was impressed at the flowage and the fishing that it offers. I will have to spend some more time out there and learn the water. It is close to home and not too busy. I will let you know next week how we do.
Ben Gruber can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.