Iowa fishing report 4-23-09
Big Spirit Lake: When dock fishing in Templar Lagoon not all docks are public. Permission from home owners must be acquired to fish on the east side of the lagoon. Bluegill fishing is good. Use a pink and white ice jig tipped with a waxworm around boat docks in Templar Lagoon. Crappie fishing is good. Use a small jig or minnow below a small slip bobber at Templar Lagoon, the Grade or along bull rush beds in Angler’s Bay. Largemouth bass fishing is fair. Fish at Buffalo Run with live bait or jerk baits along rocks extending into lake. Northern pike fishing is fair. Use spoons or live bait in Hales Slough or along the bull rush beds in Angler’s Bay. Smallmouth bass fishing is good, Use blade baits, jerk baits or a black hair jig tipped with a minnow at Little and Big Stoney points on calm days. Yellow perch fishing is good. Use jigging lures tipped with live bait and vertical jig in boats or slip bobber fish with minnows at Marble Beach.
East Okoboji Lake: Yellow bass fishing is fair. Use small jigs tipped with live bait along wind blown shorelines.
Minnewashta Lake: Use ice jigs tipped with live bait around boat docks for bluegills. White bass fishing is good. Use a twister tail or slip bobber and minnow at the Sawmill Bridge on the north shore.
Silver Lake (Dickinson): Walleye fishing is good. Use a jig and minnow or twister tail at the Trapper’s Bay Bridge or wader fish along shorelines.
West Okoboji Lake: Fishing has been slow, with some bluegills being caught at Triboji along boat docks.
Five Island Lake: Walleye fishing has been good. Use a jig and minnow or twister tail after sunset along shorelines.
Lost Island Lake: Walleye fishing is good. Use a jig and minnow or twister tail while wader fishing on the east shore after sunset.
Schmerse W.A. Pond: Bluegills are biting on small jigs fished below a small bobber along shore.
Little Sioux River (state line to Linn Grove): Walleye fishing is good on twister tails or a jig and minnow fished in holes below riffles.
West Fork Des Moines (state line to Emmetsburg): Use twister tails in slack water areas below riffles or bridges for northern pike. Walleye fishing is good. Use a jig and minnow or twister tail in holes below riffles in Esterville.
West Fork Des Moines (Emmetsburg to Humboldt): Northern pike fishing is fair. Use twister tails in slack water areas below large holes and bridges. Walleye fishing is good. Use a jig and minnow or twister tail in holes below riffles or behind bridges.
Kids Corner fishing report this week is Schmerse Pond located in Clay County 3.5 miles east of Fostoria on B14. Use a small micro jig or hair jig beneath a small bobber for bluegills and crappies. Cast out from shore and slowly jig the bobber back towards shore. For more fishing report information contact Fisheries Management at Spirit Lake (712)-336-1840
Clear Lake: Water temps are running in the lower 50s. Channel Catfish are biting on dead chubs and crawlers fishing from the jetty. Crappie fishing has been fair fishing the canals. A few small walleyes are being caught fishing at the grade and the outlet. Yellow bass fishing is slow.
Lake Cornelia: Fishing has been excellent for 8- to 9-inch bullheads on crawlers fished on the bottom. Walleye fishing has been fair fishing the north end of the lake using a jig and minnow.
Rice Lake: Fishing has been excellent for 7- to 8-inch bullheads on crawlers fished on the bottom.
East Fork Des Moines (state line to Algona): Catfish are biting on dead chubs and crawlers fished off the bottom. Walleye fishing is good on jigs and minnows.
East Fork Des Moines (Algona to Humboldt): Catfish are biting on dead chubs and crawlers fished off the bottom. Walleye fishing is good on jigs and minnows.
For more information on fishing in the area lakes and rivers, call us at the Clear Lake Fisheries Office at (641) 357-3517.
Brushy Creek Lake: Fishing is still slow. As the warm weather arrives things should pick up.
Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake): A few walleye are being caught with jigs and twisters while drifting. White bass fishing has been good, especially off Starr Park on the west side. Fish wherever it’s calm and use jigs or twisters. A few catfish are being caught while drifting. Remember that Storm Lake has a 17 to 22 inch slot length limit. All walleye in that range must be released.
Black Hawk Lake: Fishing is still a bit slow. Anglers are catching a few catfish. Panfish should pick up with the arrival of warm, stable weather.
Fishing is generally slow, but should improve with the arrival of warmer, more stable weather. For more information about the above lakes and rivers call Lannie Miller (712-657-2638) at the Black Hawk District Office in Lake View.
For more information on fishing in northwest Iowa, call the regional office in Spirit Lake at 712-336-1840.
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City): Walleye and smallmouth bass fishing have remained steady in the Cedar River. Fishing has slowed some with the recent cool temperatures and rain showers. Occasional catches of northern pike are being reported. Numerous smallmouths are being caught by anglers fishing for walleyes. Concentrate on the same areas and tackle for smallmouth bass as well. Anglers are still catching a few walleyes using jigs and plastics tipped with a minnow or crawler. The spawn has pretty well ended so fish have dispersed throughout the river. Try fishing current breaks or drop-offs as well as rocky shorelines or those lined with rip-rap.
Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills): Anglers have been successful taking catfish in shallow back water areas using cutbaits fished on the bottom. Anglers have reported good catches of smallmouth bass using jigs tipped with a minnow or crawler. Concentrate fishing near current breaks or eddies and rocky shorelines. Walleye fishing has slowed some, but catches are still being reported.
Maquoketa River (above Monticello): The walleye spawn has ended but anglers are still catching a few walleyes throughout the river. Crappies should be picking up on Lake Delhi as water temperatures warm through the end of April and into May. Anglers are still catching walleyes using jigs with plastics tipped with a minnow or crawler. Try fishing current breaks or drop off areas. Lake fishing has still remained slow as air temperatures and recent showers have kept water temperatures cool. Crappies will be the next in line to spawn in area lakes and river backwaters as water temperatures increase throughout the end of April and into May. Crappies generally spawn when water temperatures are between 56 and 64 degrees.
Contact the Manchester field office for more information at 563-927-3276.
Mississippi River Pool 9: Freshwater drum fishing is fair. Try night crawlers on the bottom. Some bass are being caught in the Minnesota Slough area by New Albin.
Mississippi River Pool 10: Anglers are catching drum on the bottom using night crawlers. Anglers are catching many largemouth and some smallmouth bass in Harpers Slough, Big Swift and Mud Hen Lakes. A few sauger are being caught on jig and minnow in the tailwaters.
Mississippi River Pool 11 Tailwaters: Anglers are catching small bluegills near boat ramps on bobbers and worms. Anglers are catching freshwater drum on simple hooks baited with a night crawler and an egg sinker for weight. Sauger can be caught, many are smaller, but some of them are keeper size also. Smallmouth bass fishing is good near the dam and in the spillway. Walleye fishing is slow, but some bigger walleye are being caught in the tailwaters on jig and minnow. White bass fishing is fair on small white jigs or small spinners.
River gauges: Lansing- 8.6 Lynxville- 16.9 Guttenberg- 8.1 Water temperature at Guttenberg- 51 degrees. The water levels in pools 9-11 steadily falling. Water has returned within the banks. Gates are back in operation at Guttenberg. Call the Guttenberg Fisheries Station for current conditions at (563) 252-1156.
Volga Lake: A few people have been out on the lakes but angling has been slow. This time of year can be good for catching channel catfish. When the wind is blowing hard toward a shallow cove, the catfish will gorge themselves on dead fish that are being pushed into those areas.
Lake Hendricks: With the warmer weather predicted for the weekend, fish should be more active. Bluegill and catfish fishing is slow. Try angling for catfish using dead chubs. Nice size crappies are being caught using Mr. Twisters and fake minnows. Largemouth bass fishing is slow. Anglers have been catching bass using jigs tossed along the shoreline.
Lake Meyer: The crappie, bite has slowed a bit due to the cooler, windy weather. Nice size bass are being caught on crankbaits and rattletraps.
Upper Iowa River (above Decorah): Water quality on the Upper Iowa is excellent and flows are normal to low. Water temperatures are on the rise. Smallmouth bass fishing between old airport bridge and city prairie has been good. Try using natural colored jigs and fish in the evening when insects are hatching. Sucker fishing is slow. A few walleye are being caught on a jig tipped with a twistertail or minnow.
Upper Iowa River (below Decorah): Water quality on the Upper Iowa below Decorah is excellent and flowing normal to low. Water temperatures are rising. Smallmouth bass fishing is slow. Anglers continue reporting catching suckers using a hook and a worm. Walleye fishing has slowed below the lower dam but fish 14-plus inches are still being caught.
Yellow River: Trout fishing has been good in the deeper holes and around log jams. Try using a wooly bugger for rainbows.
Turkey River (below Clermont): Water conditions are excellent but levels are low. Water temperatures are 50 degrees and on the rise. Trout fishing is fair from Elkader upstream. Northern pike fishing is slow. Rainbow trout fishing is fair. Try using a 1/32 ounce jig tipped with a twister tail. Walleye fishing is slow.
Cedar River (above Nashua): Water quality continues to improve and temperatures are on the rise. Channel catfish fishing is good. Anglers should try using dead chubs, cutbaits or minnows. Try going early evening for those 3 to 3.5 pounders. A few crappies are starting to show up in the anglers creel. Northern pike fishing is slow, but anglers have been picking up a few nice northerns around Nashua. Anglers report spotty catches of walleyes.
Decorah District Streams: Hatchery staff are reporting excellent stream conditions. After stocking for several weeks, the streams are full of trout. Stocking calendars are available on the Iowa DNR website at http://www.iowadnr.gov/fish/news/stockrep/trout.html For b.rown trout, try casting upstream and let your lure float down along rocks or bankhides to the bottom end of the riffle. Try using beaded black nymphs for those wiley browns. Use more natural looking jigs and spinners with clearer water for rainbow trout. Warmer weather and a chance of rain are forecast for the weekend. For general fishing information, contact fisheries staff at 563-382-8324. For information on trout stocking, please call 563-927-5736.
Mississippi River Pool 12: River stage at Dubuque is 10.35 and falling. Water clarity is fair. Water temperatures are in the low 50s. Channel Catfish are being caught on minnows and crawlers. A few crappie are being caught in the backwaters on minnows. Key in on woody structure. Sauger fishing has been slow in the tailwaters. A few are being caught on the wing dams by walleye anglers. A few walleyes are being caught off of wing dams and near the mouth of Catfish Creek. It has been mostly a minnow bite, but a few are starting to bite on crawlers.
Mississippi River Pool 13: River stage at Bellevue is 8.94 feet and falling. Water clarity is fair and water temperatures are in the low 50s. The crappie bite has been slow but should improve as water temperatures increase. Bass are starting to bite on spinnerbaits in the backwaters and sidechannels around stumps, snags, and rock. Sauger fishing has been slow in the tailwaters. Walleye are being caught off of wing dams with three way rigs or crank baits. Anglers are also picking up fish around Pleasant Creek and Sand Prairie.
Mississippi River Pool 14: River stage at Camanche is 11.73 and falling. Water temps are in the mid 50s and water clarity is fair. Bluegill fishing has been slows but should get better as water temperatures increase. A few cats are being caught on shad guts or dead minnows. Crappie fishing has been slow, but should get better as water temperatures increase. Bass are starting to bite, mainly on spinnerbaits. Walleye fishing has been fair using jigs, three way rigs, and crank baits. Most fish are being caught along rip rap shorelines, but a few are starting to bite on the wing dams. Beaver Slough has been producing some numbers.
For information about fishing Pools 12 - 15 of the Mississippi River, call the Bellevue Fish Management and Research Station at 563-872-4976.
For information on fishing in northeast Iowa, call the regional office in Manchester at 563-927-3276.
Lake Wapello: The lake is completely drained. Now would be a good opportunity to check out the new habitat that has been added while the lake was drained.
Lake Miami: The boat dock at the east ramp has been installed. Channel catfish have been biting on dead minnows or night crawlers. Some largemouth bass have been hitting on soft plastics and spinnerbaits.
Lake Sugema: Bluegill fishing has been fair. Try using small jigs tipped with a night crawler. Try a variety of depths. Crappie fishing has also been fair. Try using small jigs tipped with a minnow or waxworm. Try different locations until you find active fish. Walleyes have started biting on jigs tipped with minnows along the rocky shorelines.
Rathbun Reservoir: Lake Rathbun water temperature is in the upper 40s. The lake level is currently at 905.4, which is one and a half feet above regular pool. Some boat ramps are being repaired so they will be closed. Currently work is being done at the Buck Creek marina ramp and the Bridgeview ramp. There is also some road work being done, so detours are set up to reroute traffic. Currently County Road J5T is closed going across the dam. Use night crawlers or cut bait to catch channel Catfish, back in the coves and bays. Some crappies are being caught drifting or trolling small jigs tipped with a minnow.
Rathbun District Farm Ponds: Water is warming up, and the fishing is turning on. Be sure to ask permission before fishing private farm ponds. Crappie and largemouth bass fishing is good.
For any further southeast Iowa fishing reports call the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406.
Kent Park Lake: Warmer days have made for better fishing. The dam has been producing fish best. Warmer weather has pushed some crappies in tighter to the bank. Try fishing jigs tipped with minnows or minnows under a bobber on the face of the dam or around shallower brush. Largemouth bass fishing is fair. Try throwing slower moving artificials on the dam or around shallow structure on warm days.
Lake Macbride: Water temperature is around 50 degrees. Crappie fishing is slow, but warming water should start pushing males in tighter to shore. Look for more fish on brush near break lines or on flats adjacent to shallow water. A few walleyes had been caught last week near the spillway, but the spawn is winding down and the fish should be moving out to deeper water.
Coralville Reservoir: The lake level is normal at 679 feet and is expected to hold at this level. The water remains dirty due to high wind/wave activity. Some channel catfish are still being caught on cut bait. Keep moving around until you find fish.
Water temperatures are finally starting to warm up, but the fishing has still been slow. Warmer weather should start pushing more fish in shallow and get the bite going. For more information, contact the Lake Macbride Fisheries Station at 319-624-3615.
Geode Lake: Nice weather has brought the anglers back out. The bluegills are in the shallow areas in the afternoons looking for the aquatic insects brought in by the sunlight warming the water. Look for the Largemouth to be in the shallow bays where the bluegills and warmer water temps will be.
Belva Deer Lake: The warmer weather has started to bring the anglers back out, but they haven’t been having much luck. Water temps are still in the upper 40s low 50s most of the time except on those sunny afternoons in the shallows.
Lake Darling: The lake is drained.
Lake Darling District Farm Ponds: Water is warming up, and the fishing is turning on. Be sure to ask permission before fishing private farm ponds. Crappie and largemouth bass fishing is good.
For more information on the above lakes call us at the Lake Darling Fisheries Office at (319)
Mississippi River Pool 16: River stage at Lock and Dam 15 is 9.67ft. Bluegill, crappie and channel catfish fishing is slow. A few channel catfish are being picked up around Sunset Marina on night crawlers and shad. A few saugers are being caught on jigs and minnows in Sylvan Slough. A few walleyes are being caught in Sylvan Slough on jigs and minnows. A few white bass are being caught in Sylvan Slough on in-line spinners or casting jigs and twisters.
Mississippi River Pool 17: River stage at Lock and Dam 16 is 8.57ft. Fishing for all species is slow.
Mississippi River Pool 18: River stage at Lock and Dam 17 is 10.07ft. Bluegill fishing is fair. Some channel catfish are being caught on shad, liver, and night crawlers. A few crappies are being picked up around brush piles and stump fields on jigs and minnows. Sauger and walleye fishing is slow.
Mississippi River Pool 19: River stage at Lock and Dam 18 is 6.45ft. Bluegill fishing is slow. Some channel catfish are being caught on shad and shad guts. Some crappies are being caught in the backwaters on minnows. Sauger and walleye fishing is slow.
Mississippi River Pools 16-20: River levels are forecasted to begin falling by the weekend. These forecasts could change with rain in the forecast. Main channel water temperatures are around 53 degrees. For more information on fishing Pools 16-20 of the Mississippi River contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.
For more information on fishing in southeast Iowa, call the regional office in Brighton at 319-694-2430.
Binder Lake: Largemouth bass fishing is good, with several fish in the 10- to 14-inch range being caught from the dam during the evening.
Lake Icaria: The lake is at normal level and water clarity is good. Some fish are moving shallower into the rocky areas of the dam and fish mounds. Bullhead, channel catfish, crappie and walleye fishing has been fair. Walleyes are getting more active in rocky areas in 6 to 10 feet of water. Jigs and diving lures have been the most successful. A few crappies are showing up in 6 to 8 feet of water. Bullheads are biting on night crawlers fished on the bottom, and catfish are hitting stink bait in the upper end of the lake.
West Lake Osceola: Water clarity is good and the lake level is near normal. Largemouth bass fishing is good in 3 to 6 feet of water on spinners and crankbaits. Several 12- to 20-inch fish have been caught.
Three Mile: Water clarity is good, with temperatures in the mid-60s. Some larger catfish have been caught in the upper end of the lake on stinkbait. Crappies are just starting to bite. They are still in deeper water, but are moving into about 8 feet of water by late afternoon. Some walleyes are being caught in 20 to 30 feet of water off the creek channel.
Twelve Mile: Water temperatures are in the low 50s and clarity is very good. Channel catfish and walleye fishing has been fair. The upper end of the lake has produced several channel catfish Walleyes are still deep, in 20 to 30 feet of water, but will move shallower after dark. Jigs or a jig and minnow fished off the bottom are producing the best.
Mt. Ayr District Farm Ponds: Waters are warming up and the fish are turning on. Be sure to ask permission before fishing a farm pond. Anglers are reporting good fishing for crappies and largemouth bass. Water temperatures have warmed considerably over the past week. Most area lakes and ponds should be in the mid-60s range, so fishing should really start turning on this weekend. Fore more information about area ponds, contact the Mt. Ayr Fisheries Station at 641-464-3108
West Nishnabotna River: Channel catfish fishing has been good on shad sides for 4- to 5-pound fish.
Nodaway Lake: There is a boat ramp for smaller boats, and shoreline access is limited. Crappies are being caught along the dam casting chartreuse twister tails.
Lake Anita: Warming temperatures are bringing crappies to shore. Fishing is good using small jigs along rocky shorelines and around the main boat ramp and pontoon area. A few bluegills are being picked up by crappie anglers.
Lake Manawa: The lake is full with water coming in from Mosquito Creek. Crappie fishing has picked up in the canals casting tube jigs or white twister tails around docks. A few wipers are being caught on twister tails by the outlet.
Anderson Area Pond 1: Anglers are catching crappies in 8 feet of water using minnows fished under a bobber.
Cold Springs District Farm Ponds: Ask permission before fishing private farm ponds. Crappies are being caught in the larger farm ponds using small jigs. Faces of dams are always good places to start.
Don Williams Lake: Crappies are starting to bite. Most are being caught in 10 to 15 feet of water, but they should start moving to shallower, warmer water.
Rock Creek Lake (Jasper): Some catfish are being caught on shrimp, cut bait and night crawlers. Crappie fishing has not picked up yet, but with the warmer weather, they should be starting soon.
Hickory Grove Lake: Boat anglers are doing well on crappies using small plastics or minnows under a bobber. Fish are suspended on brush and pallet piles or along drop-offs. They are being caught above and below the tubes.
Lake Ahquabi: Bluegill and crappie fishing is slow on small tube jigs, but fishing should pick up with rapidly warming waters.
Red Rock Reservoir: Crappie fishing is slow, with a few being picked up in 3 feet of water or less. The fish that are caught are good sized, from 10 to 12 inches.
Blue Heron Lake (Raccoon River Park): Shore anglers are catching decent numbers of bluebills and crappies on the north and east sides of the lake. Small jigs or wigglers are working for bluegills, while small hair or tube jigs or minnows fished under a bobber are working for crappies.
Des Moines River (Saylorville to Red Rock): White bass fishing is good below the Saylorville spillway on jigs or small spinners. Crappie fishing is slow, but some nice fish up to 14 inches have been caught along the north side of the tailwaters below the Red Rock spillway.
Contact Bryan Hayes at (712) 769-2587 for information on the above area lakes.
For more information on general fishing in southwest Iowa, call the regional office in Lewis at 712-769-2587.