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Iowa fishing report 8-26-10

August 26, 2010 at 02:08 PM

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources issues a weekly fishing report on Thursdays in an effort to provide the latest information heading into the weekend. The weekly fishing report is compiled from information gathered from local bait shops, angler creel surveys, and county and state parks staff. For current information, contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at the end of each district report.

NORTHWEST
Nelson Park Lake
Catfish are biting.  Remember to clean vegetation off boat trailers when leaving Nelson Park Lake because the invasive plant brittle naiad is present.  Channel Catfish - Good: Many channel catfish have been caught from the face of the dam.  Anglers are having the best luck using stink bait and fishing fairly close to shore in 5 to 10 feet of water.  Bluegill - Slow: 7 to 8-inch bluegill have been caught on small jigs and a wax worm.  If you have a small boat, try drifting with a jig set at about 6 to 10 feet down.

Yellow Smoke Park Lake
Water clarity is excellent.  Remember to clean vegetation off boat trailers when leaving Yellow Smoke because the invasive plant brittle naiad is present.  Bluegill - Slow: Yellow Smoke has 8.5 to 9.5-inch bluegill.  Because the water is so clear, try using really light line and small lures.  Fish deep around submerged trees.  Also, try drifting the open water 5 to 10 feet down.  Try small black jigs tipped with a wax worm, a piece of night crawler or a piece of crawdad tail.  Anglers report that they can catch big bluegill, but don’t expect to catch more than seven or eight per trip.  Largemouth Bass - Fair: A fair number of largemouth bass are being caught, but most are sub-legal fish.  There are a lot of bass around 14 inches in length that make for great catch and release fishing.

Crawford Creek Impoundment
A lot of 10-inch crappies are being caught.  Remember to clean vegetation off boat trailers when leaving Crawford Creek because the invasive plant brittle naiad is present.  Channel Catfish - Good: Anglers are still doing well for channel catfish.  Catfish are biting on just about anything, but night crawlers are working best.  Night time fishing has been popular the last couple of weeks.  Bluegill - Fair: Try using small jigs and a piece of night crawler.  A good technique has been drifting the open water and fishing about 6 to 10 feet down.  The bluegills are 7 to 8.5 inches.  Largemouth Bass - Good: Many largemouth bass are being caught, but very few are over the legal limit (15 inches).  Crappie - Good: Crappie were being caught on small minnows.  Try drifting the open water and fishing about 6 to 10 feet down.

Badger Lake
Catfishing has been good, but fishing for other species is still slow.  Channel Catfish - Good: Anglers are catching catfish on shrimp, cut bait and dip bait.  A wide variety of sizes are being caught.

Brushy Creek Lake
Fishing has picked up a little since last week.  While there has not been much fishing for channel catfish, there are a lot of 8-plus pound channel catfish present.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Try fishing for channel catfish in the north end of the lake.  Bluegill - Good: Bluegill are just off the bottom of the lake in 10 to 15 feet of water.  Use very light fishing gear and live bait.  Largemouth Bass - Good: Bass can be found on the drop-offs with nearby structure.

Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)
Boaters use caution:  There is an ongoing dredging project at Storm Lake and boats should stay at least 100 feet away from the dredge pipe.  The dredge pipe is marked with buoys.  Small gizzard shad (2.5 to 3.5 inches) are abundant in the lake right now.  Daily bag limit at Storm Lake is three walleye:  all 17 to 22-inch walleye must be immediately released, only one walleye over 22 inches may be kept.  Channel Catfish - Good: Anglers have been using mostly shrimp for bait, but stink bait has also been working.  White Bass - Good: White bass are being caught on white twisters or picked up while walleye fishing.  Try fishing white bass with top-waters on hot, calm evenings.  Look for bait fish breaking the surface and cast for white bass there.  Walleye - Slow: Try fishing the deep holes in the dredged areas and the rock piles in deeper water.

North Twin Lake
Yellow bass and freshwater drum are abundant and anglers have been catching decent numbers of them.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Fish with stink bait, cut bait, chubs, night crawlers or crawdads off the bottom.  Freshwater Drum - Fair: Freshwater drum are plentiful; try using live crawdads or night crawlers and fish near the bottom.  Yellow Bass - Good: Yellow bass fishing has been good.  The yellow bass are about 7 to 8 inches long, but there are lots of them.  Some yellow bass in the 9 to 10-inch range have been caught.  Try casting near shore using small, bright colored lures tipped with a piece of crawdad or a little piece of yellow bass meat.  Anglers have been picking up two or three bass at each dock on the east side and then move on to the next.

Swan Lake
Water clarity has improved since the last couple of weeks.  Bluegill - Good: Fish about 10 feet off shore and two feet down with a bobber and a worm.  Anglers are catching them almost as fast as they can reel them in.  Largemouth Bass - Fair: A few bass are being picked up while panfishing.  Crappie - Good: Fish about 10 feet off shore and two feet down with a bobber and a worm.  Anglers are catching them almost as fast as they can reel them in.

Black Hawk Lake
Walleye must be 15 inches or longer to keep and anglers are allowed three walleye per day.  The Ice House Point picnic area and handicapped accessible pier will be closed for the next 30 days or until further notice.  The road is still open to the boat ramp there, but the remainder of the area will be closed due to the construction of a paved bike trail.  Channel Catfish - Good: Fish the windward shore with cut bait or stink bait.  Whole crawdads make excellent catfish bait.  Hook the crawdad through the tail and crack the shell so the juices can put out scent in the water.  Anglers from boats have been catching fair numbers of catfish averaging two pounds.

Browns Lake
Fishing has been slow.  Small bass and catfish are being caught.

Snyder Bend Lake
Fishing has been slow.  Small bass and catfish are being caught.

Southwood Conservation Area Pond (east)
Fishing is slow.  Small bass and bluegill are being caught.

The Black Hawk district has received little rain this past week.  Water temperatures are in the mid 70s.  Catfish are still biting at most of the lakes.  For more information about these lakes and rivers call Ben Wallace or Don Herrig at the Black Hawk District Office in Lake View at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Largemouth bass are biting on minnows fished from the causeway. Channel catfish are biting on chicken liver and night crawler below the dam.

Lower Pine Lake
Channel catfish are biting on crawlers.

Upper Pine Lake
Largemouth bass are biting on top-water baits. Channel catfish are biting on crawlers.

Lake Smith
Channel catfish and bluegills are biting on worms.

Lake Catherine
Largemouth bass and bluegill are being caught fishing near the trees. Channel catfish are biting on crawlers fished on the bottom.

Clear Lake
Yellow bass fishing is fair, try fishing live bait or cut bait near the reefs and in the little lake.  A few walleyes are being caught using the same technique. Channel catfish are biting on crawlers and chicken liver fishing the windswept side of the lake. Sunfish are biting on worms from shore.

Little Wall Lake
Largemouth bass fishing is fair using crankbaits or minnows. Channel catfish are biting on chicken liver and cut bait.

Rice Lake
Yellow perch and bullheads are biting on minnows fished from shore.

For more information on fishing in the area lakes and rivers, call the Clear Lake Fisheries Office at 641-357-3517.

Lake Pahoja
Bluegill - Fair: Fish the brush piles with small jigs tipped with live bait.  Crappie - Slow: A few fish have been caught by anglers while bluegill fishing.

Mill Creek (Lake)
Mill Creek Lake would be a great place to take a child fishing for bluegills.  Use a small bobber and hook baited with a piece of worm along the boat docks and shoreline.  There is plenty of parking and easy access along the south shore.  Bluegill - Excellent: Use a small bobber and hook baited with a piece of worm along the docks.

Big Spirit Lake
Water temperature is 74 degrees.  White Bass - Good: Fish at sunrise or sunset with top-water lures.  Look for surfacing fish on the outside and inside weed edges.  Bluegill - Fair: Fish are scattered on the weed beds use small jigs tipped with live bait.  A few fish are also being caught at the Grade on the fishing pier using a small bobber and crawler.  Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Fish rock bars with jigs during the day or top-water lures at sunset (look for surfacing fish).  Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use soft plastics along boat docks and weed beds.  Yellow Perch - Fair: Fish with small jigs tipped with wigglers in 18 to 22 feet of water or around weed beds in 8 to 10 feet of water.  Walleye - Slow: A few fish have been caught along the edge of weed lines with jigs tipped with live bait. Some fish have been caught from shore on the Grade at the fish barrier with jigs.

East Okoboji Lake
Channel Catfish - Fair: Use crawdads or chubs fished on the bottom near moving water at the bridges or on the north shore near the spillway.  White Bass - Fair: Fish at sunrise or sunset at the bridges with top-water lures or jigs.  Bluegill - Fair: Fish weed lines or docks with small jigs tipped with live bait.  Yellow Bass - Good: Fish around boat docks or weed lines with small jigs tipped with wigglers or crawler.

Minnewashta Lake
Bluegill - Fair: Fish around boat docks and weed lines with a small jig tipped with live bait.  Yellow Bass - Good: Fish either of the bridges early or late in the day or boat docks with small jigs tipped with live bait.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Channel Catfish - Fair: Use chubs or other bait along boat docks, brush piles, or near the Trapper’s Bay Bridge.  White Bass - Good: Use jigs or top-water lures at sunrise or sunset near the Trapper’s Bay Bridge or troll crankbaits.  Walleye - Fair: A few fish are being caught drifting spinner rigs tipped with a crawler or trolling crankbaits at sunrise or sunset.

West Okoboji Lake
Water temperature is 74 degrees.  White Bass - Fair: Look for surfacing activity early and late near points.  Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs or a slip bobber with live bait along weed edges and rock bars.  A few fish are being caught around docks as well.  Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Look for surfacing activity in the mornings or evenings near rock bars.  Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use jigs along weed beds and boat docks.  Yellow Perch - Fair: Use a small jig or slip bobber with live bait along weed beds.  Muskellunge - Fair: Fishing has picked up using large buck tails in the mornings or evenings.  Yellow Bass - Fair: Use a small jig or slip bobber with live bait along weed beds.

Five Island Lake
Channel Catfish - Good: Use stink bait or cut bait at the train bridge.

Lost Island Lake
Channel Catfish - Slow: A few fish are being caught by walleye anglers.  Walleye - Slow: Drift fish with spinner rigs tipped with a crawler or troll crankbaits.

Big Sioux River
The river is still high but slowly dropping.  Channel Catfish - Good: Fish are being caught near brush piles with stink bait or chubs.  Flathead Catfish - Fair: Fish near large brush piles and deep holes with large live bait.

Rock River
The river is still high but dropping.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Use liver or live bait near brush piles and holes.

Little Sioux River (state line to Linn Grove)
The river is still high but dropping.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Use stink bait or live bait in holes or near brush piles.

West Fork Des Moines (state line to Emmetsburg)
Channel Catfish - Good: Fish near brush piles and eddies with crawdads or chubs.  Walleye - Fair: Fish deep holes with a lead head jig and crawler.

Fishing has picked up with cooler weather.  For more fishing information on the Spirit Lake area call 712-336-1840.

NORTHEAST

Volga Lake
We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week. 

Lake Hendricks
Anglers have reported fishing as slow this week, but are still managing a few catfish.  Channel Catfish - Fair: A few catfish are being caught using chicken liver.  Largemouth Bass - Slow: Bass have been slow this week.

Lake Meyer
Fishing has picked up for smaller bluegills.  This is a good time to take a child or first time angler.  Northern Pike - Slow: Anglers are catching a few small northerns along the weed lines using a variety of cast and retrieve baits.  Channel Catfish - Slow: The catfish bite has slowed this week.  Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are being caught in 10 to 12 feet of water on small jigs or slip bobbers.  Most fish are in the 5 to 6-inch range.  Largemouth Bass - Slow: Bass have slowed this week.  Crappie - Slow: The crappie bite has slowed.

Charles City Impoundment
The river is looking very good this week and fishing has picked up.  Channel Catfish - Good: Reports are that catfish are biting on crawlers and chicken liver.  Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Anglers are catching smallmouth on jigs and crawlers.  Walleye - Fair: Anglers are reporting catching small walleyes on jigs and crawlers.

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)
Water levels have dropped and are now at normal flow for this time of year.  Smallmouth and walleye are being caught all along the river above Decorah.  Smallmouth Bass - Good: Anglers are catching smallmouth bass.  Most fish have been 10 to 14 inches.  Try using twister tails with a slow retrieve.  Walleye - Fair: Anglers are reporting a few walleyes being caught while fishing for smallmouth.

Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)
Water levels are good this week.  Smallmouth bass are being caught from the Ellingson Bridge to the Hwy. 76 Bridge.  Anglers are also having luck around the lower dam.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Anglers have been having some success using stink bait and chicken livers around the Lundy Bridge area.  Smallmouth Bass - Good: Smallmouth bass are being caught with a twister and jig.  Most of anglers have been using white twister tails.

Yellow River
We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week. 

Cedar River (above Nashua)
The river is back to normal and is looking really good.  Channel Catfish - Good: Anglers have been using cut bait, chubs, minnows or stink bait. Anglers having the most luck have been fishing the Nashua Lake.  Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Smallmouth bass are being caught, but with no regularity using a jig with a crawler.  Crappie - Slow: Anglers are catching a few crappies in the lake at Nashua.

River levels are back to normal and remain clear.  Fishing has picked up on the rivers this week.  Trout streams are in good condition.  The district lakes are still catching fish as well.  For more information about a specific stream, call the Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 

Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)
Catfish, largemouth bass, and bluegills are being caught at Casey Lake but not in great quantities.  Channel Catfish - Good: Try stink bait in shallow water around dusk or early in the morning.  Bluegill - Slow:  Largemouth Bass - Fair:

Big Woods Lake
Some smaller crappie being caught along with some occasional northern pike.  Northern Pike - Good: Try casting large spinner baits or crankbaits from the shore or trolling crankbaits from a boat.  Crappie - Fair: Try small jigs tipped with minnows

Brinker Lake
Reports of some smaller walleye and crappie are coming in.  Crappie - Fair: Troll or drift below schools of shad with minnows in 12 to 15 feet of water.  Walleye - Fair: Try trolling crankbaits in 15 to 25 feet of water.

George Wyth Lake
The water is higher than normal.  You will have to wade to get on to the fishing pier.  Fishing has been spotty overall but a few anglers have been catching some crappie and largemouth bass.  Largemouth Bass - Fair: Cast top-water baits early morning or late evening. Mid-day try casting spinner baits or plastic worms.  Crappie - Fair: Minnows under a slip bobber or on a small jig

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
Anglers are reporting a mixed bag when fish are biting.  Fishing has been good overall with the best action coming from catfish, smallmouth bass and walleye. As we approach September and river levels remain steady, angling should really improve on most all species.  Channel Catfish - Good: Try stink bait, cut bait, or small panfish fished on the bottom. With recent cool temperatures, try fishing shallow near riffle areas or fallen logs along the shoreline.  Flathead Catfish - Fair: Try live panfish or bullheads fished below floats or on the bottom.  Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Use crayfish patterned crankbaits or plastics resembling crayfish around rocks or logs.  Walleye - Good: Concentrate in areas where the current is broken by fallen trees along shore in 4 to 6 feet of water.

Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock)
Smallmouth, walleye and northern pike action should be picking up as the weather and water temperatures cool.  Smallmouth Bass - Fair:  Walleye - Good: Try casting jigs tipped with a night crawler along current breaks or rocky shorelines.

Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)
Angling has really improved for many species.  Reports have improved for walleye, smallmouth bass and channel catfish. Recent surveys show good numbers of both smallmouth bass and channel catfish in the Wapsipinicon River.  Channel Catfish - Good: Stink baits, cut-baits and chicken liver have been working well on channel catfish. Try fishing riffle areas this time of year also.  Smallmouth Bass - Good: Both live bait and artificial baits work well this time of year.  Walleye - Fair: Look for break lines in the current or drop-offs near sandbars using artificial or live baits.

Maquoketa River (above Monticello)
The Maquoketa River looks in excellent condition.  Reports have been good for both walleye and channel catfish. Use caution when boating due to recent flooding.  Channel Catfish - Good: Try night crawlers or cut baits near fallen logs dropping your bait into the upstream end of the structure.  Walleye - Good: Jigs tipped with a night crawler has been working well.

Interior river levels are in excellent condition for angling opportunities. With the recent cool weather, area lakes should begin to pick up again as we approach the month of September. Contact your local bait shops for the most up-to-date reports on area lakes and rivers. Trout streams still maintain good flows creating excellent angling opportunities on area streams. For more information contact the district office in Manchester at 563-927-3276.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER
Mississippi River Pool 9
Water level at Lansing is 10.1 feet, and is predicted to continue to fall more than one foot this week.  Water temperature is near 73 degrees. Water clarity is fair with the absence of rainwater runoff.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Try fishing along the shoreline or edges of flooded vegetation for best results.  You do not need to cast far out to catch nice catfish.  Stink baits or chicken liver are the baits of choice. There have also been reports of good catches above the dam.  Bluegill - Good: Bluegills have been reported in Desoto Bay being caught on a worm and bobber in 4 feet of water under the lilies.  There have also been good reports from Minnesota Slough.  Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Try fishing areas with rock and good current, especially near a good back-eddy.  Some nice fish earlier were being reported at the entrance of Big Slough and near Village Creek.  Largemouth Bass - Good: Anglers report good catches of bass in the Lansing area along main channel weed lines using crawdad crankbaits.  Yellow Perch - Fair: good numbers of yellow perch have been caught fishing off the bottom in 5 to 6 feet of water near New Albin.  Sauger - No Report: With the past week’s floating vegetation, few anglers went out drifting/jigging for sauger.  The amount of vegetation has decreased. Walleye fishing should start to pick up.  Walleye - No Report: With the past week’s floating vegetation, few anglers went out jigging for walleyes.  The amount of vegetation has decreased. Walleye fishing should start to pick up.  Freshwater Drum - Fair: The drum fishing has slowed a bit, but they can still be caught off the bottom with a crawler. Drum are excellent eating fish especially if prepared fresh.  Remember to take ice with you if you plan on keeping drum and other fish fresh especially with the warm temperatures.

Mississippi River Pool 10
Water level at Lynxville is 17.8 feet, and is expected to continue to fall this week.  Water temperature is near 73 degrees. The amount of floating vegetation coming down the river has decreased.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Try fishing along the shoreline or edges of flooded vegetation for best results.  You do not need to cast far out to catch nice catfish.  Stink baits have been working well here.  White Bass - Good: Some schools of active feeding white bass have begun to show up near the wing dams in Harpers Ferry.  Look for jumping minnows and cast a small white minnow imitation or spinner.  Bluegill - Excellent: Anglers have reported catching large bluegills along rocky areas like near the edge of the spillway, near wing dams, and along the edge of the weed lines in the backwaters.  The majority are being caught floating a night crawler.  Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Smallmouth are hitting well along rocky areas with current.  They can be seen chasing minnows along with the white bass.  Largemouth Bass - Good: Bigger largemouths are being caught right now. Fish near bank areas along the weed line using top-water or spinner baits for the best success.  Crappie - Slow: Some nice crappies have been caught near woody structure using minnows and small jigs.  The problem is that they have been hard to find, but if you do the size has been good.  Walleye - No Report: With the decreased amount of floating vegetation, the bite should start to pick up.  Freshwater Drum - Fair: Some drum are being caught right now fishing a worm on the bottom, especially out of Noble’s Landing.  Drum are excellent eating fish especially if prepared fresh.  Remember to take ice with you if you plan on keeping drum and other fish especially with the warm temperatures.

Mississippi River Pool 11
Water level at Guttenberg is 10.6 feet.  It is expected to remain high but begin to fall by early next week.  Water temperature is near 82 degrees.  With changing water levels anglers will have to deal with a lot of floating vegetation.  Northern Pike - Fair: A few nice pike being caught.  Look again at cold water inputs such as spring areas or tributary streams.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Try fishing along the shoreline or edges of flooded vegetation for best results.  You do not need to cast far out to catch nice catfish.  Stink baits or crawlers are the baits of choice.  Flathead Catfish - Fair: Some nice flathead catfish have been caught below the dam jigging heavy spoons or one-eyed jigs.  Bluegill - Excellent: Larger bluegills and other sunfish are being caught right now along the bank with bobber and worms. The DNR fishing walkway in Guttenberg has been a popular location.  Edge of weed lines throughout the pool especially in areas of brush piles has also been popular.  Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Some smallmouth are being caught fishing near rock in good current.  Try drifting night crawlers or using artificial lures such as in-line spinner.  Largemouth Bass - Good: Largemouth can be caught along shorelines with woody debris. Small spinners or jigs will work best.  Some places to try bass fishing in Pool 11 are Mud Lake by Dubuque, Bertrum Lake by Cassville and Swift Slough by Guttenberg.  Many anglers are using plastic frogs and worms to eliminate problems with floating weeds.  Crappie - Fair: Some Crappie are being caught on minnows in Mud Lake and Sunfish Lake in Lower Pool 11.  Yellow Perch - Fair: There have been some reports of good catches of yellow perch in the sloughs around Guttenberg.  Some very large yellow perch can be found in the Mississippi River.  Sauger - Slow: There have been some reports of sauger being caught in the tail waters and out on the wing dams.  Walleye - Slow: The walleye fishing should start to pick up.  Wing dams are a little too deep with the high water.  Hopefully anglers can start to concentrate on fall wing dam walleye fishing.  Freshwater Drum - Fair: Some drum are still being reported in the upper part of pool 11.  During high water fish will often be found near shore in eddy area but away from the strong current. One-eyed jigs or night crawlers have been working well.

Water temperature at Guttenberg is right around 71 degrees. River levels are expected to continue to fall over the next week.  Water levels are: Lansing 10.1, Lynxville 17.8 and Guttenberg 9.3. Floating vegetation should be becoming less of a problem now.

Mississippi River Pool 16
River stage at Lock and Dam 15 is 10.80 feet.  Channel Catfish - Good: Channel catfish are being caught on dip baits and crawlers fished around brush piles and logjams along the main channel and side sloughs.  White Bass - Slow:  Bluegill - Slow: Some bluegills are being caught at dark in Sunset Marina casting tube jigs.  Crappie - Slow:  Walleye - Slow: Walleye fishing on the wing dams has been slow due to high and muddy water.

Mississippi River Pool 17
River stage at Lock and Dam 16 is 9.99 feet.  Channel Catfish - Good: Some channel catfish are being caught on dip baits, green worms, crawlers, and shad fished around brush piles and logjams along the main channel and sloughs. Channel catfish are also being caught at GPC.  White Bass - Slow:  Bluegill - Slow:  Crappie - Slow:  Walleye - Slow: Walleye fishing has been slow due to high and muddy water. There is some debris in the water that makes trolling difficult.

Mississippi River Pool 18
River stage at Lock and Dam 17 is 11.87 feet.  Channel Catfish - Good: Channel catfish are being caught on dip baits, crawlers, and shad fished around brush piles and logjams along the main channel and side sloughs.  Bluegill - No Report:  Crappie - No Report:  Walleye - No Report:

Mississippi River Pool 19
River stage at Lock and Dam 18 is 8.40 feet.  Channel Catfish - Good: Channel catfish are being caught on stink baits, crawlers, and shad fished around brush piles along the main channel and side sloughs.  Bluegill - No Report:  Crappie - No Report:  Walleye - No Report:

Mississippi River Pools 16-20: River stages are still above normal throughout Pools 16-20. Water clarity is poor. Fishing has been slow due to high and muddy water conditions. Main channel water temperature is around 77 degrees. For more fishing information on pools 16-20 of the Mississippi River contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.

SOUTHEAST
Lake Geode
Fishing is starting to pick up a bit.  The cooler weather is bringing out a few more anglers to enjoy the lake.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Try along the face of the dam and up at the upper end for the catfish.  Stink baits or chicken liver is working the best.  Bluegill - Fair: Look to the edge of the weed beds in 6 to 8 feet of water to find some nice bluegills.  Small jigs tipped with worm will be your best bet.

Lake Belva Deer
The road paving project continues in the park.  Boaters need to use the north ramp as the south ramp continues to be closed.  Channel Catfish - Good: Look for the catfish to be in the bays and around the rock jetties.  Bluegill - Good: The bluegills are suspended at a depth of 10 to 13 feet.  They are shallower during the early morning hours.  Crappie - Good: Crappies are at about 10 to 13 feet of water in the trees.

Lake of the Hills
The cool nights are starting to bring the water temperature down.  Channel Catfish - Good: Catfishing has been good early and late using chicken liver and stink baits. Anglers fishing along the old creek channel have been having some luck.  Bluegill - Fair: The bigger bluegills are suspended in the deeper water.  The smaller ones are in shallow if you want some nonstop action for the kids.  Crappie - Slow: Crappies are being caught off the deeper brush piles.  Vertical jigging with a jig and minnow is working. Expect to pick up four to six when you find a school and then have to move on.

Railroad Lake
Channel Catfish - Good: Look for these fish to be around the stumps and the old creek channels in the early morning and late evening.  Largemouth Bass - Good: Look for bass to be in the flooded timber along south side. Spinner baits and top-water early and late.

Skunk River (Rose Hill to Coppock)
The river is still above flood stage but it is almost to back full level. But at least it continues to drop.

Iowa River (Columbus Junction to Mississippi River)
The river is a couple of feet below bank full and is forecast to continue to drop, but at a slow rate. Look for it to be a couple of feet lower by this time next week.

For more information on the above lakes and rivers call the Lake Darling Fisheries Station at 319-694-2430.

Lake Wapello
The lake has refilled after last year’s fish population renovation.  Red ear and channel catfish were stocked last fall and largemouth bass and bluegill this spring.

Red Haw Lake
Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish have been biting on stink bait.  Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs tipped with a chunk of night crawler.  Try areas along the aquatic vegetation and in pockets within the vegetation.  Largemouth Bass - Good: Try plastic worms fished around submerged structure or around the rock jetties.  Another good lure selection would be brightly colored spinner bait.  Try white or chartreuse.

Hawthorn Lake (aka Barnes City Lake)
The lake renovation project has begun and the lake is being drained.  The boat ramps are not usable as the lake is approximately 20 feet low.  Shore fishing is still allowed however the lake bottom is still quite muddy.

Lake Keomah
Channel Catfish - Fair: Try using stink bait or cut bait.  Fish in areas where the water is between 8 and 12 feet deep.  Largemouth Bass - Good: Use spinner baits or rubber worms along the shoreline and around the jetties.  Another good spot to try is along the outside of the aquatic vegetation.

Albia (lower)
A boat ramp has been constructed on the lower reservoir.  Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs tipped with a chunk of night crawler.  Try areas along the dam between the upper and lower reservoirs.  Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use spinner baits fished along the shoreline and around areas with submerged structures.  Try top-water lures in the mornings and evenings.

Lake Sugema
Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs tipped with a chunk of night crawler.  Try areas with edges such as the shoreline or the weed lines.  Largemouth Bass - Good: Use plastic worms and spinner baits around areas with submerged structure.  Top-water action can be good in the mornings and evenings.

Rathbun Reservoir
The current lake level is 920.89 feet with normal pool being 904 feet.  The water temperature is ranging in the lower 80s.  Boat ramps are open at Honey Creek State Park and the high water ramp at Buck Creek.  Use caution when boating.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish are biting on cut bait and dead chubs.  Crappie - Slow: Try trolling crankbaits.  Try different depths until you find active fish.  With the higher pool levels the fish may be in different depths when compared to prior years.  Walleye - Fair: Try trolling or drifting night crawler rigs along underwater reefs and islands.  Jigging spoons have also been productive.  Crankbaits are also a good choice this time of year.  Try using baits that mimic gizzard shad.  Please be wary of tagged walleyes and if these fish are harvested please call the hatchery with the tag number.  The phone number for the hatchery is 641-647-2406.

For additional fishing information in south central Iowa call the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406.

SOUTHWEST
Roberts Creek Lake
Crappie - Good: Anglers trolling or drifting minnows are picking up decent catches of crappie.  Most of the fish are not large, but are cleanable 8 to 9 inchers.

Big Creek Lake
There is currently a walleye harvest study taking place.  Anglers who catch a walleye should look near the tail of the fish for a small yellow tag.  The tags can be removed from harvested or released fish of LEGAL size and returned with a survey for a cash reward.  The surveys can be picked up at the marina, park office, Polk City Bait and Tackle, or Johnston Bait and Tackle.  There are also signs posted at the boat ramps with instructions.  Channel Catfish - Good: Channel cats are biting well in the upper arms using fresh cut bait.  Fish in depths 15 feet and less.  White Bass - Good: Big Creek currently has a large population of white bass.  They are biting aggressively, especially just before and just after sunset.  Casting or drifting small jigs or spinners is working well.  Trolling lip-less crankbaits is also a good option.  Concentrate on the points and jetties on the windblown side of the lake.  Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills remain suspended.  Drift fishing small pieces of crawler in 6 to 14 feet has produced good catches in the upper half of the lake in both the east and west arms.  The roadbeds in the west ramp bay and out from the 100th Street boat ramp continue to produce bluegills, white bass, and few crappies.  Bluegills and crappies are suspended from 8 to 12 feet on either side of the roadbeds.  The lake is stratified so avoid fishing depths greater than 12 to 15 feet.  The bluegills have been good.  Walleye - Fair: The walleye bite has been a little better over the past week.  The fish being caught are still coming from the east and west arms at their very upper ends using night crawlers, leeches, or shallow diving crankbaits.  Crappie anglers drifting live minnows are also picking up a few walleye. 

Hickory Grove Lake
We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week. 

Red Rock Reservoir
White Bass - Good: Good reports are still coming from anglers that are trolling near the bridges, fishing above the mile long bridge and up the Teter Creek arm.  White bass are being picked by covering water and trolling crankbaits.  Sunny days seem to be far more productive.  There was excellent shad reproduction this year.  On calm days look for gulls and/or shad breaking the surface.  Crappie - Fair:  Crappie are being caught early in the morning at the Roberts Creek dam using minnows or small tube jigs.  Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) - Good: Anglers fishing white bass that are busting shad are also hooking into good numbers of wipers.

Saylorville Reservoir
White Bass - Excellent: White bass are hitting good right now by trolling silver or chrome colored spoons or lip-less crankbaits.  The best areas have been the north shore of the marina cove around to Sandpiper beach, the pump station in the marina, and the Big Creek spillway due to the high flow.  If the water is calm look for schools of shad breaking the surface.

Des Moines River (Stratford to Saylorville Lake)
Channel Catfish - Good: With the Des Moines River finally at good fishing levels there are good numbers of channel catfish being caught using fresh cut baits and stink baits.

Middle Raccoon River (above Van Meter)
Walleye - Good: Anglers floating or wading in the Middle Raccoon are having success catching walleyes.  1/8 to 1/16 ounce jigs with half a crawler and shallow diving crankbaits are the choice baits.

Fishing conditions are good right now.  Central Iowa rivers are at fishable levels.  The large reservoirs are continuing to drop.  For questions about central Iowa lakes and rivers contact Ben Dodd or Andy Otting at 515-432-2823.

Greenfield Lake
Greenfield Lake has one concrete boat ramp and is trolling motor only.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish are being caught around jetties using liver or cut bait. Fish are in the 1 to 3 pound range.  Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills up to 8 inches are being caught drifting small jigs in 6 to 8 feet of water.  Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth bass are being caught early morning and late afternoon along weed edges casting crankbaits and small spinners. Large percentage of bass are in the 15 to 17-inch range.

Mormon Trail Lake
Mormon Trail Lake has excellent water clarity. There is one concrete boat ramp available.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish are being caught around jetties using liver.  Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth bass up to 19 inches are being caught using plastics along weed edges.

Nodaway Lake
Nodaway has one concrete boat ramp.  Channel Catfish - Good: Channel catfish in the 1 to 2-pound range are being caught on night crawlers and liver.

Orient Lake
Orient is full with one concrete boat ramp.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Anglers are still using leeches to catch channel in the 14 to 16-inch range.

Lake Anita
Lake Anita has two concrete boat ramps to choose from.  Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are being caught drifting small jigs across the main lake and around underwater reefs. It helps to tip jig with crawler or Berkley baits. Fish average 8 inches.  Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth bass are being caught casting the shoreline with spinner baits early morning and late afternoon. Crankbaits and plastics are good baits around underwater reefs and roadbeds later in the day.  Crappie - Fair: A few crappies can be picked up drifting jigs or casting around underwater reefs. Fish average 9 inches.  Later in afternoon and evening is best.

Viking Lake
Viking Lake has three concrete boat ramps and three feet of water clarity.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Viking has a good population of channel catfish in the 1 to 3-pound range. Sonny’s dip bait or night crawlers have been working well.  Largemouth Bass - Slow: Largemouth up to 18 inches are being caught casting spinner baits or plastics along weed edges and around structure.

Lake Manawa
Water temperature is in the mid 80s.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish are still being caught on the south and west side. Shrimp has still been the number one bait. Liver and crawlers have also been good. Fish are 2 to 6 pounds.

Cold Springs District Farm Ponds
Many farm ponds hold good populations of bass, bluegill, crappie and channel catfish. Remember to always ask permission before fishing private ponds.  Channel Catfish - Good: Channel catfish are active with warmer water temperature. Try night crawlers, liver, or stink baits around structure.  Bluegill - Fair: To catch bluegill in midsummer cast jigs around deep cover. Night crawlers under a bobber work well for post spawn bluegill.  Largemouth Bass - Good: Largemouth bass are aggressive this time of year. Top-water baits work well during low light conditions and plastics during the day.

Water conditions on southwest Iowa lakes are improving and interior rivers are becoming fishable. For information contact Bryan Hayes or Mark Boucher at the Cold Springs District Office at 712-769-2587.

Lake Icaria
The lake level is normal.  Clarity is about 3 to 4 feet at mid lake and a little more near the dam.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Several catfish are being caught from shore on liver or stink baits.

Little River Watershed Lake
Water levels are normal and clarity is around one foot.  Channel Catfish - Slow: A few channel catfish are being picked up from the shallow areas using stink baits or liver.

Mt. Ayr Old Reservoir
Water quality is good.  Crappie - Fair: Several mid-sized crappies can be caught during the evening hours from the dam in about 5 to 6 feet of water using small black jigs tipped with crawler pieces.

Lake of Three Fires
Water clarity is about three feet.

Green Valley Lake
The lake level has been lowered to allow for sediment removal from the upper end.  The fish have been restocked and some catfish are being caught.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake
Water temperature is above 80 degrees and clarity is average.  Some days algae can be a problem.  Bullhead - Good: A lot of big bullheads are being caught from shore using crawlers on the bottom.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Several catfish are being caught from shore using liver, bluegill sides, or stink bait.

Grand River
Flows fluctuate but are usually near normal.  Channel Catfish - Good: A few mid-sized channel catfish are coming from the holes near bridges.  The stinkier the bait, the better.

Water levels at southwest Iowa lakes and rivers are normal and clarity is good.  Water temperatures are in the middle 80s.  Most lakes stratify with no oxygen below at the deeper depths.  The stratification depth can be as shallow as five feet.  Dying algae blooms can cause very low oxygen levels at some lakes.

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