"Fishing/Boating on Winnebago and the Fox River" Top 5 Page for this destination Appleton Things to Do Tip by babybird
Appleton Things to Do: 13 reviews and 10 photos
I have done plenty of fishing and boating on Lake Winnebago, The Fox River, Lake Poygen, and Lake Buttes Des Morts in my 10 years here. Winnebago is about 30 miles in length and roughly 5 miles wide and offers many scenic areas for life afloat. There are Walleye and
White Bass runs throughout the season and fishing can be excellent at times.
Just being out on the water is relaxing for me, whether or not I am keeping a lure wet that particular day. The boating set is generally a close-knit and friendly bunch. You will see everything from simple aluminum fishing boats to some spectacular houseboats and cruisers. During major events like 4th of July, many people view fireworks from their boats in a flotilla-style arrangement.
A couple of things to keep in mind about these lakes. They are ALL deceivingly shallow. The deepest point of Winnebago is a mere 19-20 feet, and there are numerous shoals just below the waterline. A depth sounder is a must and GPS is a very good idea. Because of the combination of size and lack of depth, these bodies of water tend to roll with fairly respectable waves much more quickly than deeper waters. Know the limitations of your vessel before venturing out. It can be a very rough ride when a strong wind comes up or one of the spring and summer thunderstorms hit.
Most people on the lakes know the rules of the water, but you will always have a few boozed up "hot dogs" with 70 MPH capability and no handling skills who ruin it for others. Every now and then, somebody does something stupid and a life is lost.
There is an ongoing campaign to reopen the entire Fox River lock system (most of which was closed in the 80's) and this could be huge for serious cruisers who want to venture out into Lake Michigan. However, at this point, the furthest you can go is through the Menasha locks into "Little Lake Buttes Des Morts."
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