Crawford Creek Impoundment
Ice is off Crawford Creek, but no fishing to report.
Oldham is open, but fishing has been slow.
Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)
As of Wednesday, Storm Lake was still partially frozen, including all three boat ramps. Some reports of anglers fishing from shore, but no reports of walleye being caught. Lake level is 32 inches below crest.
Swan Lake is free of ice. Lake level is 43 inches below crest.
Arrowhead Lake is open.
Black Hawk Pits
Black Hawk Pit is ice free. Some anglers have been fishing from shore, but nothing to report.
Little Sioux River (Correctionville to Missouri River)
Little Sioux is flowing fast with turbid water. Fishing is slow.
North Raccoon River (above State Hwy. 175 Bridge near Auburn)
Some anglers have been fishing, but walleye have been hit or miss.
Most lakes are open in the Black Hawk district. Lakes that are still partially frozen over have extremely poor ice conditions.
Most of the ice is gone from the silt dam to the causeway. It won’t be long before some catfish will be feeding in the shallow open water. When the current opens cuts in the causeway, try for catfish, bass and crappies.
Lower Pine Lake
Ice is unsafe on Upper and Lower Pine lakes.
Ice is about 1/2 out at Smith Lake, so ice fishing unsafe.
The ice is out at Humboldt.
Ice is out at Rutland.
Ice is unsafe on the main lake. The shoreline around both the main lake and the little lake is starting to open. Yellow Bass – Good: Yellow bass are scattered. Anglers have been doing well. Some fish may be moving into 8-9 feet of water.
Cornelia still has ice but anglers need to use caution. Channel Catfish – Fair: Bluegill – Slow: Yellow Bass – Good: Yellows are biting well; most are 7 inches. Anglers catching some a little larger on jigging spoons.
Little Wall Lake
Little Wall is about half free of ice.
Ice is starting to deteriorate on the shoreline. Anglers should use caution if venturing out this weekend. Fishing success at Crystal has been consistent. Bluegill – Good: Bluegills were biting in 15 feet. Anglers are still catching 7-9 inch bluegills on spikes. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Largemouth bass and an occasional walleye and northern pike are being caught on minnows.
There isn’t a lot of fishing lately. Rice Lake will be lowered four feet ahead of a plan to eliminate the fish population later this spring. Lowering the lake level will help to re-establish beneficial aquatic plants that provide fish habitat and improve water quality. Rice Lake will be restocked with sport fish.
Rainbow trout were stocked Jan 19.
Iowa River (Iowa Falls to Marshalltown)
There is some activity below Steamboat Rock for walleye and northern pike.
Shell Rock River (above Greene)
Anglers might try below some of the dams on the Shell Rock for walleye, northern pike, or catfish.
The Winnebago water levels are stable. Anglers might have success at some of the dams in Mason City, Fertile, or Forest City. Anglers might have success looking for eddy areas, where the current is slower, and fishing with minnows or cutbait for northern pike, walleye, or catfish.
East Fork Des Moines (Algona to Humboldt)
Anglers are starting to fish the East Fork but no reports have come in. Fishing should pick up soon, if we can get a little sunshine. Try with a jig and minnow retrieved slowly or left on bottom for walleye or catfish.
Be mindful of warming weather and changing ice conditions on area lakes. Ice on many of the area lakes is unsafe. For ice condition updates and fishing information in the north central area contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.
Big Spirit Lake
Walleye season is closed until May 4. Ice is going out. Bullhead – No Report: As the ice continues to go out and the water starts warming look toward the grade for some early bullhead action.
East Okoboji Lake
Walleye season is closed until May 4. Channel Catfish – No Report: Once the ice has all melted look for some early season cat action on a few of the drop offs and rock piles in the lake.
West Okoboji Lake
Walleye season is closed until May 4. Ice fishing is not advised as the ice is going out.
With the sun gaining more power, the ice continues to weaken with some areas beginning to honeycomb making all but foot travel unsafe. For more information contact the Spirit Lake Hatchery at 712-336-1840