Fly Fishing the Totagatic River in Wisconsin


Each year I get several emails regarding rivers, lakes, etc….where viewers think I should fish; I appreciate each and every one of them…but when Andrew Jacobsen told me that the Totagatic River was a spot I should research and fish…well, this time I hit the ‘old-jackpot’. That was some great advice…thanks Andrew!

I left my home heading directly to Nebraska where I would spend a few days visiting my best friend…Norm Lorenz. Norm lives in northeast Nebraska and is at 87…one of, if not the…most amazing guy I have known. Our history is long…let’s just say he and I have shot a few pheasants together over some good bird dogs these past 30 years. While in Nebraska my big concern was weather; would I get to fish in Wisconsin or would the ongoing deluge of the Midwest be my undoing?

After checking the St. Croix National Waterway website a few days in a row, it was evident that the water was on its way down and more than likely I’d be able to put my blue Voyager in on one of the three rivers I planned to fish; The St. Croix, The Namekagon and the Totagatic Rivers.

We, Vickie and I, deadheaded for the Totagatic County Park just a few miles west of Minong (My-Nong). After finding an awesome camp-spot I talked Vickie into driving me down to the dam and then picking me up later at Nancy Lake Road.

As I pulled away from my gal…I had a feeling that this black water (tannic water) was going to give up a few nice smallies tonight. As you can see by watching the video…it certainly did! After about 30 minutes the river and I got into a rhythm and the fish started to flow!

The first section (dam to Nancy Lake) had riffles and runs along the way…all but let’s say the middle most half hour. It was in this moving water that I found the smallies lurking close to the cover…maybe 1-5 foot at the most. A confident casts and a nice strip would result in a hit, take or a ‘fish-on’ at many points of the river.

In less than 2 hours I neared the bridge take-out and took a moment to reflect on the quality of what I had just experienced; I had landed about 20-25 fish…several of which were over 15 inches and did so while meandering down one of the most beautiful and enjoyable rivers I have had the honor to fish. My Creek Company Voyager had allowed me to drift, hop out and walk…and ‘Fred Flintstone’ my way along casting to hungry smallies. If you have any questions not answered by the video you can email me at

(NOTE: I spent 3 days fly fishing Totagatic River and you can click here to read more about it and check out the additional video.)

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