Musky Shop Northwoods Lake of the Month: Boom Lake
It’s time again for another Lake of the Month here in Northern Wisconsin and any “to fish” list wouldn’t be complete during ice season without a line for Boom Lake in Rhinelander. Hodag Country has dramatically labeled itself “the ice fishing capital of the world”. If you’re like me, you might be a little suspicious of this title with Canada to the North, but for the purposes of highlighting our local lakes, we’ll let this slogan live another day.
With ice fishing jumping off in a major way this December, it’s important for travelers to find their way to safe and comfortable lakes when wanting to experience ice fishing in all of its glory. Boom Lake delivers in all aspects. If you’re a local, this might not be your favorite place to go because of the weekend population, hype, or closeness to town, but for tourists and townies alike, I promise you it is a fantastic experience. It may not have the biggest numbers or largest panfish, but there is a sense of comradery on the lake and they welcome visitors with open arms.
Rhinelander has everything you need for accommodations, meals, and shopping, and Boom Lake is not too far to travel. There is public access to get you onto the water and if you want to make a new friend or ten, stop by on the weekend when you might find a pop-up shanty every 30 feet (ok, that’s a bit exaggerated, but it can get busy). This is an excellent place to begin your ice fishing journey as there will be plenty of people with knowledge of the ice and spots to catch a bucketful.
As far as layout of the lake, Boom Lake is about 365 acres situated within the Wisconsin River Flowage. The Southeast end of the lake hosts the public access and many find the fishing to be good at the 12-foot break line around the Northern End of the lake. The lake itself maxes out at 30 feet deep a mostly sandy, mucky bottom. And despite its overall bowl shape, if you can find some of the 17–20-foot holes, Boom will offer up some excellent species. Boom is home to musky, pike, crappie, walleye, and bluegill, so make sure you keep a good spread for your target fish.
As its relative location is close to the more sizeable Rhinelander, there will be plenty of places to get out of the cold, so there aren’t any special pointers for food and beds. Rhinelander has a small airport as well so convenience is key if this is your first time visiting Northern Wisconsin and taking in some ice fishing. Side note: if you don’t want to be super crowded, make sure to avoid tournament times as Boom Lake does host some ice fishing tournaments during the winter months and the crowded lake can be a bit less forgiving. Stay warm and enjoy beautiful Wisconsin.