Waneta Lake 10/20


The forecast was calling for sun and light south winds – perfect smallmouth weather, but I couldn’t get up early – so I decided on heading over to Waneta Lake for a try at some muskies. I fished this lake once before, around 16 or 17 years ago. We had tough conditions back then and didn’t do well on bass. I’m only around 35 miles away from Waneta and Lamoka Lakes, but don’t get over there much, so I was looking forward to the trip.

I arrived around 11:30 am and found the new launch to be narrow, but not bad at all. I was the only boat at the ramp/parking lot. Once I got launched, I used the trolling motor to get out. The channel is very shallow, but navigable with the big motor if caution is used. There were some perch, small bass and pickerel (or very small muskies) around. I spent a good hour or more just cruising around the lake perimeter taking mental notes and putting in a few waypoints of areas to try later.

There wasn’t much to see on the lake. Water clarity was around 1 1/2′ to 2′ max. The lake association’s weed eradication efforts via chemicals and mechanical harvesters are successful and there’s about 5 to 10% of the weed growth that used to be there. I worked some large spinnerbaits, inline spinners and plugs for muskies for around 3 hours. Never saw a fish. No bass or pickerel either. I’m not a very experienced musky fisherman, but I’d bet many fish are out over deeper water. I marked a lot of bait or panfish in around 25′ of water – I didn’t see much life in shallow. Musky action was good over the summer from what I heard. I’ll be back here likely with some large tubes and other assorted plastics and deeper running plugs. Water temp was around 55 degrees. The wind blew 10 to 20 mph with gusts to around 30 – not a pleasant day out there, though the colors were nice.