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Todd Wendorf/For


Everyone seems to have the itch to hit the open water right now and the spots to fish walleyes in the rivers can be crazy with boats!

Want to try something different this year? Head to the Lake Michigan harbors for brown trout, steelhead, and lake trout action now!

Fishing can be great along southeastern Wisconsin's shorelines. The best access and all-around fishing this time of the year tends to be found in Milwaukee.

McKinley Marina was still covered with ice last week, but the rest of the harbor is wide open. Boat launches on Water Street and at the South Shore Yacht Club are open and available.

Fish can be caught trolling smaller crankbaits like Flicker shads or by jigging 4-inch pearl Gulp minnows in the main and south gaps, at the warm water discharge at the Metro Milwaukee Sanitation District (just south of the mouth of the river entering the harbor, and in the Summerfest Lagoon). Look for culverts and other sources of current along the shorelines, especially in the Summerfest lagoon. The view from a satellite image source like Bing Maps can show you current sources that you can't see from ground level.

More on fishing: Fishing news from around the state | Your fishing photos | Build a map | Read fishing reports

Boat traffic is lighter in the harbors than it is in the walleye rivers, but I would encourage you to still get there early. If you're looking for an advantage don't be afraid to give Captain Nolan Koepp of Top Gun Charters a call at 262-305-3938. Nolan will put you on the fish!

Good luck folks and hang on tight!

Read more posts from Todd Wendorf.

Todd Wendorf specializes in wading and shore fishing throughout Wisconsin. Having grown up in northern Wisconsin, he now resides in the Madison area.

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