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Musky waters teeming with trophy and action potential

Are you hoping for a trophy musky or just some musky action? Look close-to-home for plenty of waters to choose from.

"Wisconsin has 711 lakes and more than 1,600 river miles that support musky," says Tim Simonson, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources fisheries biologist who chairs the agency's musky team. "And about 90 percent of those waters are in the northern region."

On top of that, nearly 50 percent of the northern waters are Class A or premier musky waters which can provide some of the best trophy or action musky fishing in the nation.

Trophy or Class A1 waters are best known for their ability to produce musky 48 inches and longer.

"The waters that are known trophy producers will often have lower musky populations, resulting in less angling action, but in return, they also have a higher potential to put out that big fish," says Simonson.

"Your best bet is to look for the larger and deeper, clear-water lakes or large flowages."

Action or Class A2 waters are best known for providing the most consistent angling.

"Action waters will provide faster fishing, but the chances of reeling in a big fish are lower, although it does happen," says Simonson. "Action waters are normally smaller, shallower lakes with abundant vegetation."

Classified musky waters aren't set in stone and you still could find yourself with a trophy fish in action waters.

A list of Wisconsin's musky waters and their classification is available on the DNR Web site.

The northern zone musky fishing season is open now through Nov. 30 and includes inland waters north of Highway 10.

Current regulations for most waters are a daily bag limit of one and a minimum length limit of 34 inches.

DNR fisheries supervisors recommend the following statewide waters::

The top five waters with trophy potential -- Green Bay, Marinette, Oconto, Brown and Door counties; Lake Monona in Dane County, Chippewa Flowage in Sawyer County; Okauchee in Waukesha County; and Petenwell and Castle Rock lakes in Adams County

The top five waters for musky action -- Little Green Lake, Green Lake County; Lake Wingra, Dane County; Eagle River Chain of Lakes, Vilas County; Pewaukee, Waukesha County and Biron Flowage in Wood County.

The musky was named the official state fish in 1955.