Crawford Creek Impoundment
Bluegill – Fair: A few fish are being caught in the afternoons on wax worms. Anglers using cameras have stated a lot of fish are still not very active.
Brushy Creek Lake
Ice conditions are between 16-22 inches and anglers should frequently check depth when moving around. Anglers with the most success have been moving if not finding active fish along the creek channel and submerged trees. Bluegill – Slow: Use small ice jigs tipped with wax worms or plastics around submerged trees and brush piles. Keep moving to locate active fish. Best fishing has been early morning and evening. Crappie – Fair: Crappie fishing picked up some this week. Anglers are reporting fish in 20-25 feet of water on live minnows. Yellow Perch – Fair: A few perch have been caught by crappie anglers using live minnows in 20-25 feet of water. Walleye – Slow: Walleye fishing has slowed this week. Sunrise and sunset are probably still the best times to find fish along creek channel edges and road beds.
Bacon Creek Lake
Trout were stocked Jan. 18. Rainbow Trout – Fair: Fish are suspended and anglers are using minnows or small jigs tipped with wax worms.
Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)
Ice conditions range from 20-24 inches. There are two open holes on the lake: one is between the islands and the other is on the north side of Scout Island. Walleye – Fair: Fish are being caught on small spoons tipped with minnow heads. Most are 7-10 inches with a few fish in the 15-16.5-inch range. The area of the Chautauqua Park jetty and High bank seem to be best. All walleye between 17-22 inches must be immediately released and no more than one over 22 inches may be kept per day. The daily limit is three.
Swan Lake has 23 inches of ice. Bluegill – Slow: A few fish have been caught on small tungsten jigs tipped with a wax worm. Crappie – Slow: A few fish have been caught on small tungsten jigs tipped with a wax worm.
Very little angler activity has been reported.
Snyder Bend Lake
Very little angler activity has been reported
Trout were stocked on Jan. 10. Ice thickness was reported as 12 inches or more. Rainbow Trout – Fair: Trout are being caught with small jigs tipped with plastics or live bait suspended just under the ice.
Little Sioux River (Linn Grove to Correctionville)
Ice conditions are highly variable and extreme caution should be used if going out. Channel Catfish – Slow: A few fish have been caught in deep holes while walleye and sauger fishing. Sauger – Slow: A few fish have been caught fishing deep holes with minnow heads or live minnows/chubs. Walleye – Slow: A few smaller walleye have been caught in deeper holes with jigging lures tipped with a minnow head or a dead stick rod baited with a live minnow or chub.
Little Sioux River (Correctionville to Missouri River)
Ice conditions are highly variable and extreme caution should be used if going out. Channel Catfish – Slow: A few fish have been caught while walleye fishing. Sauger – Slow: A few have been caught while walleye fishing. Walleye – Slow: A few fish have been caught in wintering holes using minnows/chubs on dead stick rods or tipping a jigging lure with a minnow.
Tigges Pond Willey
Bluegill – Fair: A few fish have been caught with wax worms. Largemouth Bass – Fair: A few bass have been caught while bluegill fishing. Crappie – Fair: A few fish have been caught with wax worms.
Check ice depth regularly if venturing out on ice.
Lower Pine Lake
Activity remains steady with crappies averaging seven inches and bluegills averaging six inches plus on Lower Pine.
Ice thickness is 18-20 inches. Not much fishing activity.
Ice thickness is 20-23 inches. Anglers should avoid driving through the channel that runs from the little lake to the big lake as that area can be unsafe; take the highway around instead. Bluegill – Slow: A few bluegills and crappies have been caught on the edge of the reeds on the north shore of the main lake. Crappie – Fair: Anglers are still getting some in the deeper areas of the little lake around dark. Look for them suspended quite a ways off the bottom if you’re in the deeper water in the little lake. A few crappies also have been caught near Baptist Camp/Farmers Beach areas, and by the island in deeper water. Most are 8-11 inches. Yellow Perch – Slow: Some small perch being caught; 10 inchers are not very common. Walleye – Slow: An occasional keeper is being reported near the Baptist Camp, or near the aerator on the west end (14-inch minimum). Yellow Bass – Fair: Most of the action is coming from the main lake near the Baptist Camp and Farmers Beach. Yellows on the little lake seem to be around 12 feet of water. Most yellow bass being caught are around 7.5-8 inches with a few 9-9.5 inchers.
Ice thickness is 20 plus inches. Reports indicate the bite has slowed. Use a minnow head or piece of cut bait on a small jig. Some have had luck using just the tail end on a light jig.
Little Wall Lake
No fishing activity seen.
Ice thickness is 20-23 inches. Bluegill – Fair: Fishing has slowed over the past few weeks. Bluegill fishing has been good using small jigs tipped with wax worms. Anglers are reporting better success in the shallower water 8 feet near the edge of the dredged basin. Crappie – Fair: Crappie fishing has been fair using minnows at dusk in the deeper water near or on the drop-off of the basin. Walleye – Slow: An occasional walleye may be taken in the deeper water using minnow.
Rainbow trout were stocked on Jan. 18. Use a small ice fly and a wax worm or a small spoon and start fishing shallow near shore.
Ice thickness is 18-20 inches. No reports lately; earlier anglers were having some success catching perch, bluegill, and some largemouth bass on spikes and wax worms fished near sunken cedar tree clumps.
For lake updates and fishing information in the north central area contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.
Big Spirit Lake
There is 22-24 inches of ice. Walleye season closes Feb. 15. Bluegill – Slow: Anglers Bay has put out a few bluegills all winter. The numbers are not great but they are quality fish. Most activity is early and late in the day. Crappie – Slow: Like the bluegills crappie activity has been best early and late in Anglers Bay. Yellow Perch – Slow: Adult perch numbers are low but many perch in the five-inch range have been observed with underwater cameras. Walleye – Slow: Walleye season closes Feb. 15. Walleye fishing at this time has been very slow with only a handful of fish being caught.
East Okoboji Lake
Walleye season closes Feb. 15.
Silver Lake (Dickinson)
There is currently 22-24 inches of ice.
West Okoboji Lake
There is 18-22 inches of ice. Walleye season closes Feb. 15. Northern Pike – Slow: Tip-ups fished near weed beds have provided some action. Bluegill – Slow: Most fishermen have been targeting Emerson and Millers Bay and weeds have been a key factor. The fishing has been hit or miss with some days being much better than others. Yellow Perch – Fair: Fish have been in 40 plus feet of water and lots of small fish have been caught. Keep in mind that fish coming out of deep water have a higher mortality rate.
Five Island Lake
There is 20-22 inches of ice. A few crappie and catfish have been caught toward the north end.
Lost Island Lake
Oxygen levels in Lost Island Lake were tested Jan. 28 and were excellent for this time of year. The Spirit Lake Office continues to receive concerns regarding a walleye kill on Lost Island Lake last fall. Although many of the walleyes in this kill were older large fish, the number of dead fish was not a concern to the overall population. Fish kills like the one on Lost Island Lake are not uncommon in natural lakes especially during times of high water temperature. Walleye – No Report: There is very little fishing pressure at this time.
Rainbow Trout – Fair: Panfish tackle is all that is needed to fish for trout. The key is not to fish too deep. The most active fish cruse just under the ice or are willing to come up to take a bait.
For more information contact the Spirit Lake Hatchery at 712-336-1840.