When guests arrive at Eagle Falls Lodge one of the first things they want to know is, “Where are the fish biting?” We’re happy to mark points on maps that typically hold fish, but the short answer is to go where the wind is blowing.
Why chase wind? Wind creates an entire food chain feeding frenzy that culminates with you catching loads of fish. When the wind starts blowing, microscopic plant-like organisms in the water called phytoplankton move closer to the surface. The sunlight they require for photosynthesis is broken up by the waves. Next come zooplankton, microscopic animals, to feed on the phytoplankton. Minnows arrive to eat the zooplankton, perch come to eat the minnows, walleyes are next to eat the perch, and then you have pike swallowing all fish smaller than themselves. Wind also oxygenates the water and can spur light-sensitive fish like walleyes to bite on sunny days.
Mudlines in the water like these are great indicators of a windswept shoreline and usually an active fish zone.
On a calm day, it can payoff to fish areas where the wind was hitting 1-2 days before as there could still be fish feeding. Know your limits though. On really rough days be smart about what you and the boat are capable of doing. Those are the days when we really enjoy having a sheltered lake like Parker to fish. You can still find windswept areas to fish that don’t involve whitecaps.
It is certainly more comfortable to fish out of the wind, but that’s not where the best fishing action is. It can take practice to maneuver the boat and fish in the wind, but it will be worth it. As a guest, I would always start my day by boating out to the main lake to assess the wind direction and then check the map to pick points, bays, and other structure where the wind will be blowing into or hitting. This is especially helpful when you don’t know the lake or body of water you are fishing. Start chasing wind and you will find plenty of “hotspots”.