The fishing season opener in Wisconsin happened on May 2, but people have been fishing for weeks since we have been quarantined. The opener covers species of fish from bluegill all the way to Bass and Northern Pike. But certain species are considered “rough” and have no closed season, so you can fish for them year-round. These species include Redhorse, Carp, and Eelpout. Once the nation, and the world, went on shutdown, these types of fish provided the perfect opportunity for people who would otherwise have no reason to leave their house to get outside.
Fishing these “rough” fish is a great way to have fun while fishing and is also a great reason to be outside. Sophomore Emma Sislo has been out on Wisconsin Point on multiple occasions, in search of Eelpout, or Burbot. These fish are comparable to the Atlantic Cod and can grow to be upwards of 5 pounds. Sislo says she enjoys fishing because “I get to be outside and it is a great way to calm down and chill out”. This is consistent with statements from another person who has been fishing the point recently, senior Riley Rehnstrand.
Fishing on Wisconsin Point is not always easy. Some of the challenges that a fisher-person could be confronted with are strong winds, chilling cold, or overcrowding on the fishing pier. Senior Riley Rehnstrand has been braving the elements for the past few months in search of smelt, a small game fish that can be caught in large quantities. Rehnstrand says “you only need a few things to start smelting, a good net, some waders, and a few buddies to do it with”. The process for catching smelt is simple, as they run close to shore during the spring months. Rehnstrand described the process as “you walk out to about waist-deep in the water, then you wait for a little bit, then quickly wrap the net around and see what you got.” Smelt are anywhere from 8-12 inches long and provide a great meal.