St. Louis River Shines during PMTT Event

The Musky Hunter Magazine Fall Showdown Qualifier conducted by the PMTT at the Superior, Wisconsin, proved to be a great surprise. The St. Louis River showed its true colors in a very large fashion. Forty-nine muskies were registered by the anglers with at least 17 fish over 40 inches being caught and released. 

The field of anglers had to contend with high west winds both days, which made boat control a challenge. Air temperatures were between 50 and 70 degrees, with some drizzle in the morning turning to clear skies. The water temperature was 64 degrees which made the fish feed preparing for the long winter ahead.

The tournament was won by two Wisconsin anglers, Jeremy VanErt of Clintonville and Greg Majka of Wausau, who caught an astounding five muskies measuring 35 1/2, 40 3/4, 42 1/2, 44 1/2, and 44 3/4 inches. They enticed the muskies with orange baits which included Bull Dawgs, jerkbaits and bucktails. They found their muskies holding near the main river channel where it came into a weed flat. The anglers took home the first place trophies and over $7,680 in cash.

Right on the winning team’s heals in second place were Spencer Berman of Spring Park, Minnesota, and local fishing guide James Gotham of Superior, Wisconsin. They also caught five muskies that measured 38 1/4, 38 1/4, 38 3/4, 39 1/2 and 41 1/2.They found their muskies in isolated patches of cabbage and used a white Shallow Invader, Suicidal Suckers and glide baits. The anglers found that their fish would strike the bait as they would pause during the retrieve. 

The third place winners caught three muskies that were 37 1/2, 42 1/2 and 45 1/4 inches. Ross Korpela and John Adkins of Carlton, Minnesota, used pink Double Cowgirls to catch their fish. In fourth place with 43- and 47 1/4-inch muskies were two Twin Cities anglers, Troy Zuelzke and Josh Borovsky. The two anglers also said their fish hit as the bait was stalled during the retrieve. They caught their fish on a Phantom jerkbait and a TopRaider in shallow weeds.

In fifth place with muskies that were 37 1/2 and 52 1/2 inches was Mark Lijewski and Clay Schroeder of Minocqua, Wisconsin. Mark fished alone both days of the event and managed to net the big fish of the day for Saturday. He used Bull Dawgs and Double Cowgirls as his lure choice. The main thing he found was warmer water that attracted muskies and baitfish to the area he was fishing. Mark and Clay are currently leading the Top Gun/Team of the Year standings. 

Lijewski’s big musky was the largest of the tournament and for Saturday. The big fish of the day for Sunday was caught by David Brown of Ashland, Wisconsin, and Scott Johnson of Racine, Wisconsin. Their fish was caught on a Bull Dawg and measured 46 1/2 inches.

For more information on becoming a member of the 2011 PMTT, or to view the event photo album, visit or call PMTT office at (815) 478-4351.

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