Sheboygan Wisconsin Charter Fishing Reports
Provided by Captain James Schlegel of Sea Dog Sportfishing Charters of Sheboygan, with contributing reports from other area anglers.

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2014 Fishing Reports

SHEBOYGAN CHARTER FISHING REPORT - by Captain James Schlegel, April 1, 2014

Last year Sheboygan witnessed one of the best fishing seasons ever for catching big fish. The Wisconsin DNR charter fishing harvest report was just released recently and confirms that fact. Sheboygan charters caught 14,654 fish during the 2013 fishing season on 2375 trips. The majority of those fish being good sized chinook salmon. Sheboygan charter bookings were also up a modest 3% over the previous year considering most ports witnessed a slight decrease due to a colder than normal spring. The 2013 fishing season was considered one of the most successful ever here in Sheboygan for catching big fish of all species. It was also my busiest year as I added a second boat to better serve all of our customers needs. The charter fishing season is now just around the corner and all indications look promising for another great year. Sheboygan is still one of the best ports in Wisconsin for Lake Michigan charter fishing. This should not be a surprise considering how busy the port was with fishermen all season long. For many years I've provided a detailed report of the area's charter harvest to the local fishing club for review. I am again pleased to be able to submit a report that verifies a healthy, productive and sustainable sport fishery. The Lake Michigan salmon fishing here in Sheboygan is still a Great Lakes success story and the envy of most sport fisheries in the world. Over the past 31 years as a Sheboygan fishing guide, it's been my pleasure to meet and visit with the thousands of fishing visitors to our area and wish all a very successful fishing season.

APRIL 27, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

The weekend may have been cold & wet but the fish didn't seem to mind. Fished just out of the harbor and to the south in 20 feet of water all morning long. Caught 13 trout Sunday morning using a variety of spoons and stick baits. Every rod on the boat had a bites but two. Water was cloudy and the temperature ranged between 44 and 46 degrees. It looks like another great start to the fishing season here in Sheboygan.

View a short video of our fishing trip

MAY 4, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

The fishing was a little tougher this week than the previous for us. This weeks weather most likely being a major factor, but we still managed to boat some nice fish. We were on the water the past several days mainly fishing the harbor area in 20 to 30 feet of water. We also tried north of town near the Pigeon River with similar results. We caught a few brown trout, lake trout and chinook salmon. The brown trout generally hit a variety of stick baits trolled behind planner boards, while the lake trout and kings took standard sized pro-kings trolled on downriggers and diver rods. The shoreline water is still cloudy and cold from 39 to 43 degrees. All the kings were caught near the harbor area for us. The Sheboygan Area Great Lakes Sport Fishing Club will again be sponsoring the annual Ride a Charter Boat Day scheduled for Tuesday May 20th beginning at 6:00 pm on the boardwalk (weather permitting). Area charter captain members will be offering free boat rides to the public all evening long as well as a variety of grilled and smoked salmon recipes for you to try. This is a great opportunity to visit with area guides and enjoy a fun evening along our boardwalk.

View a short video of our fishing trip

JUNE 9, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

The fishing here in Sheboygan is slowly improving each week with slightly warming water temperatures. I have been out on the water for the past several days fishing from 90 to 150 feet of water straight out of the harbor. We have been coming back to dock with a variety of nice sized fish. On Saturday afternoon we picked up everything but a lake trout. The brown trout topped the scale at 22.42 pounds. There's still plenty of alewives around our harbor making it easy for our area's fish to find plenty to eat. As a fishing guide we have to work extra hard to get these fish to bite consistently.

View a short video of our fishing trip

JUNE 14, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

I've been on the water everyday now for over a week and starting to see more action by the day. This mornings trip we fished in about 120 feet of water just to the north of the harbor and caught some nice kings and lake trout. Our best action was on our wire diver rods trolling flasher/fly combinations. There were more boats fishing out of Sheboygan today then I've seen all year long. The colder then normal winter has had an impact on keeping anglers away from Lake Michigan early. The steadily improved fishing will change things in a hurry as salmon are now caught consistently every day.

View a short video of our fishing trip

JUNE 16, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

Fished again all day Monday and had some success landing some kings and rainbow trout. One of the best weather days all year, we fished around 120 feet of water straight out of the harbor and hooked fish from the surface to 80 foot down. We only boated about half the fish we fought during our morning trip and landed a nice 14.5 pound rainbow trout during the pm trip. The best set up was a wire diver running a silver flasher with a green fly. Surface water warmed up the last few days to the lower 50s.

View a short video of our fishing trip

JUNE 20, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

Ive been on the water now for days and catching a good variety of kings, rainbows and lake trout. The best action for me has been fishing straight out of the harbor and to the north in 80 to 120 feet of water. Flat lines trolling silver or red rattlesnakes and wire diver rods with flasher flies have been the most productive. We are also now seeing some good sized Kings weighing up to 20 pounds daily.

View a short video of our fishing trip

JULY 7, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

Ive been on the water everyday and fishing 120 to 200 feet of water. Were catching some nice kings and rainbows every trip. I've been having some success with wire divers for kings using dodger flies, and spoons on the surface for the rainbow trout. Pictured is our catch of from the 4th of July.

View a short video of our fishing trip

JULY 13, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

Weve fished from sunrise to sunset the past several days and experienced a variety of weather and fishing conditions. The fog has been a reoccurring issue all year with our colder than normal water temperatures. We caught a number of kings, rainbows and lake trout this weekend. Most of the fish were taken in the top 60 feet of the water column, fishing from 100 to 160 feet of water. This weekend we experimented with herring strips trolled behind flashers on copper line rods and had some good results on most days. Pictured below is the catch from a 2 boat group we ran this Saturday.

View a short video of our fishing trip

AUGUST 1, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

Weve fished from sunrise to sunset the past few days and today tried the harbor area. Had some good succuss catching some kings and brown trout. Caught our two person limit this morning in just a couple of hours. Also caught some big ones during our evening trip with the biggest king weighing in at 22.6 pounds.

View a short video of our fishing trip

AUGUST 4, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

Some of the fastest paced fishing action this year. The big king salmon are now close to our shoreline as well as some rainbow trout in 60 to 80 feet of water.

View a short video of our fishing trip

AUGUST 7, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

Great fishing arrives just in time for this weekends annual Coho Derby! The weather forecast looks favorable all weekend long. We fished all day in 50 to 70 feet of water just north of town and caught a variety of kings and rainbow trout. The rainbows were taken on old school rattlespoons trolled behind planner boards and diver rods. The kings were taken all over the water column, but the best action was using rotating flashers on wire diver rods. All the best of luck on this weekends fishing tournament!

View a short video of our fishing trip

AUGUST 12, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

This has been one of the best weeks of weather and fishing we had all year. The lake water has warmed up in a hurry producing some fast paced fishing action. Thanks to all that participated in this weekends annual Coho Derby and all the volunteers to make this great event possible. I've been fishing every day in 60 to 100 feet of water and and catching all age classes of kings as well as come rainbow trout. Pictured below is our catch from Saturday.

View a short video of our fishing trip

AUGUST 24, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

This has been a good week for catching big king salmon. We have been fishing 100 feet of water straight out of the harbor. The surface water has warmed up, but the deeper water is still cool and holding the fish near our port. Pictured is our catch from this week Tuesday.

View a short video of our fishing trip

AUGUST 27, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

Its been another great day on the water here in Sheboygan. We caught all Great Lakes sport fish except the brown trout today. We fished the morning trip in 70 feet of water where our diver rods did most of the damage. We fished with a couple of seniors that had an exciting experience battling our sport fish one after another. Our afternoon party caught their limit in 120 to 130 feet of water in less than 4 hours. The surface water is still warm but down deeper it is as cold as the mid 40s.

View a short video of our fishing trip

SEPTEMBER 1, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

After the strong blow on Friday and Saturday the cold water moved back to our shoreline. Weve fished the harbor area all weekend long from sunrise to sunset. We treated our guests to catching some nice king salmon in shallow water. This is our favorite way to fish these salmon on basic monofilament line using small spoons and some smaller plugs. Working in and out of the area where the lake and river water meet seem to be the most productive. Not only are the larger king salmon staging around our harbor, Weve also noticed many jumping in the river.

View a short video of our fishing trip

SEPTEMBER 5, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

I've been fishing the harbor area now everyday for over a week. Same old story of catching some nice sized kings fishing in and out of the river water exiting the harbor. Cold lake water has brought these fish close to our shoreline. The weather has been changing several times a day lately making fishing the harbor a challenge at times. Despite the weather I've been consistently catching some good numbers of salmon as well as some brown trout. . I've been using a variety of spoons and plugs.

View a short video of our fishing trip

SEPTEMBER 22, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

We've been fishing offshore for the past few days and catching a variety of trout and salmon. Double digit catches are now common as long as the weather cooperates. On Sunday we put a 17.22 pound rainbow trout on board. Most of the fish have been caught fishing the top 50 feet of water using a variety of spoons.

View a short video of our fishing trip

OCTOBER 12, 2014 - Captain James Schlegel

We've been fishing offshore for the past couple of days in 110 to 160 feet of water. We had the opportunity to introduce a number of young anglers to this Great Lakes sport fishery here in Sheboygan on a number recent trips. Water temperature has been in the low fifties and some nice 2 and 3 year old salmon have been taken on downriggers and wire diver rods. Although our season is winding down, we will still be charter fishing for at least another week here in Sheboygan to take advantage of the decent weather forecast.

View a short video of our fishing trip


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