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Chitown-Angler
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Joined: 01:32pm - Jun 19,04
Posts: 1432
Location: Joliet, Illinois

Post Posted: 10:07am - Jan 29,18 
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We made the annual trek up to SB this past weekend for Whitefish. Arrived on Saturday morning and headed out to the shack with all our gear in tow. Hitched a ride with Captain Bob from Fin-Fanatic charters, and rented two of his ice houses for the day. Although we didn't slay them, fishing was pretty consistent on Saturday. The standard two-hook sliding rig worked the best. All hooks were tipped with Wax worms. We took 47 on Saturday, with an average size of about 16 to 19 inches.

Sunday, we hit the water with Capt JJ Malvitz. Again, because we have done this many times, we rented two ice houses for the day and brought our own gear. It really is the most economical way to go because they provide you the transportation to and from the heated permanent ice house. Fishing was a little slower on Sunday. But both shacks caught fish. We ended the day with 31. Came off the ice about 3. Sunday produced some nice fish with about 6 fish at 19 inches which is a nice sized Whitefish.

For us, this is an annual trip. For anyone interested, this is a pretty simple, straight forward set up. Fishing is almost always consistent, nothing complicated to the gear, and it can be done in two-days, or one if you want to put the drive time in. Sturgeon Bay is about 4.5 hours from the Chicago area. Plenty of lodging available in various price ranges, as well as a variety of guide services to get you what you need. Everything from fully guided at an average of $100 to $125 a day per person, or you can go with a modified semi-guide, or self-guided for less. You can also rent a shack from most places for an average of $50 per person which includes transportation to and from the ice shack. You can also check on Groupon for some great deals on packages from a few guides in the area. If you're interested in more information drop me a PM. Always willing to share info.

Lt.


Last edited by Lt. on 03:58pm - Jan 29,18, edited 1 time in total.
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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 02:57pm - Dec 18,13
Posts: 167
Location: LakeFront

Post Posted: 10:45am - Jan 29,18 
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Thanks LT, sounds lime a great trip, well recommended to everyone. Its hard to think of a 4hr drive fromChi area wher you catch 10 2lb, hard fighting fish from 60-80ft deep. Just a ton of fun.

Can you tell us where you launched from? Rileys, sand bay or perhaps sherwood point? Also, are there any vehicles on the ice yet?

Any info will be great. Thanks.

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Chitown-Angler
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Joined: 01:32pm - Jun 19,04
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Location: Joliet, Illinois

Post Posted: 03:40pm - Jan 29,18 
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GrandSlammer,

We left out of Sherwood Point near the launch at the old Sherwood Bar and Grill which is now called CJ's. It is almost at the end of County Road M. That seems to be the best location if you're fishing the North end of the reef. There are certainly other access points depending on ice conditions, and fishing locations. I didn't see any vehicles out where we were, and there is really no reason to drive out that far. Ice shoves, and cracks are always a safety concern there due to the shipping channel and large unprotected areas. Strong winds have the potential to cause issues with moving the large ice flows around. The USCG also runs ice breakers along the shipping channel as well. I think if anyone went, they could arrange some transportation with a guide service for a reasonable fee. Access to the ice with an ATV is pretty easy as well in the right places.

Lt.

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Chitown-Angler
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Joined: 01:32pm - Jun 19,04
Posts: 1432
Location: Joliet, Illinois

Post Posted: 03:56pm - Jan 29,18 
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I should also add that we fished in about 80 feet of water on the North end of the reef. Ice conditions were good. At our location, we were on about 15 inches, or more of ice. If anyone is going, bring ice cleats. There is very little snow on the ice. Walking around out there is pretty precarious and if you take a spill you're likely going to hurt yourself.

Lt.

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Joined: 05:18pm - Sep 9,12
Posts: 1992
Location: South Elgin

Post Posted: 04:50pm - Jan 29,18 
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Sounds like a great time and definitely on my bucket list. Thanks for all the useful information.

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Chitown-Angler
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Joined: 07:52am - May 22,06
Posts: 78
Location: Northwest Burbs

Post Posted: 09:02am - Jan 30,18 
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I have fished open water on Winnebago with Capt. Bob. Great guy answers all questions and catches fish.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 10:37am - Dec 3,11
Posts: 115
Location: Northern Il

Post Posted: 02:01pm - Feb 15,18 
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Going up Friday. Fishing Saturday and Sunday. Anyone ever walk out and catch whitefish? I seen a lot of people last year right off shore. Wondering if anyone has done this, thanks.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 10:20pm - Jan 18,07
Posts: 250

Post Posted: 10:01pm - Feb 15,18 
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Contact a guide and buy a ride out, should have better odds of getting into fish. Use your own stuff, should be around $20 for a ride out & back. Ive done this a few times with success.

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Chitown-Angler
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Joined: 01:32pm - Jun 19,04
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Location: Joliet, Illinois

Post Posted: 06:35am - Feb 16,18 
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Biotroller,

Although it is true that you will see many people fishing in close, the majority of those fishing Whitefish are in much deeper water. Not to say that you might not catch any in close, but your odds are better out deep. Most fish on, or around the edges of the reef in that area. You would need to walk quite a distance to reach the more productive areas. That would be quite a chore with all your gear. Also, should the weather or wind kick up, you would be in a precarious position to return from that far out. Most guide services would transport you out and back for a small fee. Most also rent heated permanent shacks in the range of $50 a person and they take you out and return you safe and sound.

Weekends there are very busy, with most guide services at capacity. If you make a few calls, I’m sure you could work something out with one of them.

Lt.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 10:20pm - Jan 18,07
Posts: 250

Post Posted: 08:46am - Feb 17,18 
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Sorry if I wasnt clear, I was suggesting hiring a guide for transport out to the deeper water & using all of your own equipment. Shack, rods, bait etc. for around $20 a guy you will fish in the same area as the guides, like you said, deeper water being more productive. Hope to go one more time this year. A flooded basement ruined my plans this weekend....

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Chitown-Angler
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Joined: 01:32pm - Jun 19,04
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Location: Joliet, Illinois

Post Posted: 02:59pm - Feb 17,18 
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For anyone heading up that way on your own. It would be prudent to either make a call, or stop and speak to someone about the condition of any pressure cracks in the immediate area. The bay can have some movement for various reasons that I
the ice flow. There are some man made basic bridges, but error on the side of safety and check before you head across any of them. No fish is worth injury, or loss of life.

Lt.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 10:37am - Dec 3,11
Posts: 115
Location: Northern Il

Post Posted: 10:01am - Feb 19,18 
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Hired a guide to bring us out and use own gear. $120 it was white out and windy Saturday. We managed 17.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 10:20pm - Jan 18,07
Posts: 250

Post Posted: 09:53pm - Feb 20,18 
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How many guys were in your group?

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 10:37am - Dec 3,11
Posts: 115
Location: Northern Il

Post Posted: 06:49pm - Feb 23,18 
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Me and my 7 year old

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