Anyone who normally fishes for the monster Bluegills and Crappies on the Madison chain of lakes is loving the heavy snow and rain over the past 4 months. The last couple of winters the government has lower the lake levels to reduce the effects of above average precipitation, which has caused some shoreline erosion for the water front home owners. Lake levels are rising and are currently above summer minimum levels. This hopefully will allow the large panfish to return to their normal early spring areas. The past couple of springs the water levels were too low for the panfish to move in right after ice out. Look for areas that will warm quickly right after ice out. Small rivers and streams that run into any of the Chain of lakes will hold panfish early in the year. Lagoons and shallow bays also hold fish.
I personally use a small ice jig with a wax worm. Clear water I will use a black and purple or black and red tear drop. Stained water firetiger tear drop, fished under a small bobber.
Lake Mendota water level
10.5 inch Lake Mendota bluegill on a early summer spot.
14 inch white crappie on the same early summer hole.