Kings Sailing into Port   « Back

Sauk Creek flows in natural splendor through the nature preserve on the northern outskirts of Port Washington.
Author: John Luthens
Source: On Wisconsin Outdoors

Oct. 16, 2018

Round about harvest time, when the late-season flowers blossom along the streets of Port Washington, Wisconsin, and the Lake Michigan mists of autumn rise from the cold waves to shroud Church Hill in their blankets; a venturing angler would do well to wander up the streets of the harbor town and peek into the rocky shadows of Sauk Creek.

Fogs and flowers aren’t the only thing rolling into Port Washington with the colors of the season. King salmon has heeded the annual summons and sailed into town. Leaping and spawning in the tributary shallows of Sauk Creek, without the deep shroud of Lake Michigan to cover him up – king salmon is an autumn sight that’s well worth catching.
Tumbling over waterfall drops as it passes through a nature preserve along the town’s northern edge, Sauk Creek winds like a watery snake and crashes beneath bridges on the borderline of the village streets, blending its wild waters seamlessly into the urban charm of the village. And during the height of the salmon run, every angle comes complete with the slapping tails and dorsal fins of mighty fish.

The deepest holes and bends are not, exactly, well-kept secrets, lined with salted fishermen plying spoons and spawn from morning till night when salmon are on the move. Still, there are plenty of tucked-away pockets where an angler can find a piece of solitude: Autumn leaves drifting into the pounding froth, sunlight sneaking through the rocks and crawling along the banks, if it weren’t for the distant hum of cars along the streets and the array singing of reels in the distance, Sauk Creek would be perfectly comfortable river in a pristine wilderness.

Sturgeon spawning in the weed-lined bays of the Wolf River, spring walleye running thick in the rivers of Green Bay, mighty steelhead running the icy banks of Lake Superior in a northern snow squall: all of these sights are apt to stir the soul of Wisconsin anglers.

The kings sail into the harbor town of Port Washington for a once-a year showing. Put it on your list.