One of the best places in Wisconsin to enjoy river fishing is Rusk County, home to four wild rivers and numerous flowages and lakes. Don’t know where to start? Here’s a handy guide on where to go and what to fish for in Rusk County’s rivers and lakes.
Where to fish in Rusk County
We’d be remiss to talk about fishing in Rusk County without mentioning the area’s most famous rivers: the Jump, Chippewa, Thornapple and Flambeau. These waters teem with fish, and the Chippewa and Flambeau, in particular, are known for their trophy stocks of musky and walleye. Anglers will also find great opportunities for panfish, bass and northern pike.
In addition to Rusk County’s four wild rivers, anglers can explore more than 250 lakes and flowages of all sizes. Notable lakes and flowages include:
- Potato Lake: Travel to southwestern Rusk County to find this small, scenic lake that can be accessed by two public boat launches. Don’t miss out on more recreation opportunities at Potato Creek Wildlife Area, a 1,000-acre site that sits at the outlet of Potato Lake.
- Lake Flambeau (Dairyland Flowage): A popular fishing spot among locals and visitors alike, the Dairyland Flowage covers more than 1,800 acres. Put your boat in at one of five public landings and cast your line for musky, bass, panfish and even catfish.
- Ladysmith Flowage: Did you know you can discover outstanding fishing smack dab in the middle of Ladysmith? The Ladysmith Flowage, which covers more than 250 acres, bisects the city of Ladysmith and tempts fishermen with a robust population of panfish, bass and musky.
- Holcombe Flowage: At 4,000 acres and 10 miles long, this flowage is one of the best fishing destinations in Wisconsin. Widely regarded as a premier spot for trophy musky, anglers will also find panfish like bluegill and crappie, as well as a healthy population of walleye and bass.
- Big Falls Flowage: Head six miles north of Tony in central Rusk County to find this 281-acre flowage, accessible via a public boat landing. In the flowage, anglers will find musky, panfish, bass, pike, walleye, sturgeon and catfish.
Get the right gear (or a guide)
Several Rusk County businesses provide anglers with everything they’ll need for a successful fishing trip. Visit Ace Home Center & Sportsland and Flambeau River Outfitters in Ladysmith for fishing gear, live bait, tackle and more.
If you’re looking for some real insider information for your fishing excursion, consider hiring a local guide. Guide services are available through Chippewa River Custom Rods (which also manufactures high-quality fishing rods) in Holcombe, Jerry Gunn Guide Service in Bruce and at Flater’s Resort in Holcombe.