Nelson Park Lake
Channel Catfish – Fair: Anglers have picked up a few using traditional catfish baits (e.g., dip baits, cut bait, chicken liver).
Yellow Smoke Park Lake
A hoop netting survey designed to collect catfish was conducted on 7-24-15. Nice sized channel catfish ranging from 9 – 28 inches and 6-9 inch bluegill were collected. Target catfish using leeches, cut bait, or dip baits fished on or near bottom in areas 5-10 feet deep. Fish for bluegills using crawlers, minnows, or leeches in 3-10 feet of water.
Brushy Creek Lake
Surface water temperatures have likely dropped a few degrees due to cooler air temperatures and high rainfalls. Walleye – Slow: A few walleye have been picked up in about 20 feet of water. Bluegill – Fair: Varying reports; some anglers are catching limits of bluegill on crawlers and leeches in about 10-15 feet of water while others are picking up a few. Fish areas 10-20 feet deep with drop-offs and submerged structure. Black Crappie – Slow: The crappie bite is hit or miss; successful anglers are fishing in 15 feet of water. Look for crappies near suspended mid-water structure or the flooded creek channels by submerged structure. Yellow Perch – Slow: Fish for yellow perch along edges of vegetation or structure suspended in 15 feet of water.
Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)
Boaters should use caution around the dredge barge, booster pump barge, and pipeline. Walleye regulations for Storm Lake are three fish per day, all fish between 17 and 22 inches must be released and only one over 22 inches may be kept. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been caught while trolling shad colored crankbaits in 7 to 10 feet of water. Successful anglers are fishing the dredge cuts. Channel Catfish – Fair: Anglers are catching catfish using dip baits, cut bait, and chicken liver from boat and shore. White Bass – Fair: White bass are being caught on crankbaits while fishing for walleyes.
North Twin Lake
A hoop netting survey designed to collect catfish was conducted the week of 7-20-15. Nice sized channel catfish ranging from 8-25 inches were collected, with most falling in the 12-18 inch category. Target catfish using leeches, cut bait, or dip baits fished on or near bottom in areas anywhere from 3-8 feet deep.
Swan Lake experienced a substantial fish kill the weekend of August 15th. The fish kill was likely caused by a large diurnal swing in dissolved oxygen levels that dropped to lethal levels during the night or early morning hours. Swan Lake was experiencing a strong algae bloom, which can cause big swings in dissolved oxygen. The fish population will be sampled this fall to determine if additional stocking is needed.
Black Hawk Lake
Lake level is 10.5 inches above crest. Surface water temperature is 67 F. Bluegill – Slow: Fish for bluegill out deeper near rock piles. Use crawlers or leeches. Walleye – Fair: 14-19 inch walleye have been picked up near rock piles in the east end. Some have been caught trolling in the east end. Best luck is mornings and evenings. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers are catching largemouth bass using spinners, crawlers, or minnows and jigs. Most fish are below the 15 inch minimum length limit for largemouth bass.
Largemouth Bass – Fair. Bluegill – Slow: Anglers have caught a few bluegill with crawlers fished under a bobber.
Snyder Bend Lake
Channel Catfish – Fair: Anglers have picked up some channel catfish using crawlers and stink bait. Shortnose gar – Good: Anglers are picking up gar fishing from shore.
Southwood Conservation Area Pond (east)
Channel Catfish – Fair: Some catfish are being picked up using dip baits and crawlers.
Little Sioux River (Linn Grove to Correctionville)
As of Thursday, discharge around Linn Grove is 1440 cfs (94th percentile) and around Correctionville is 3600 cfs (98th percentile).
Little Sioux River (Correctionville to Missouri River)
As of Thursday, discharge around Turin is 7810 cfs (98th percentile).
North Raccoon River (above State Highway 175 bridge near Auburn)
As of Thursday, discharge around Sac City is 2000 cfs (98th percentile).
Des Moines River (Humboldt to Stratford)
As of Thursday, discharge in the Fort Dodge area is 5700 cfs (98th percentile) and 7260 cfs (92nd percentile) in the Stratford area.
Water temperatures have dropped a few degrees in the Black Hawk District due to cooler air temperatures and large rain events. River levels are high. For more information on the Black Hawk District, call 712-657-2638.
Upper Pine Lake
Bluegill – Good: Bluegills are being caught on crawlers from both lakes. Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth bass are being caught from Upper Pine with deep diving crankbait.
Walleye – Slow: A few walleyes have been reported in the early morning from docks around the outlet. Walleyes have been caught in the submergent vegetation outside of the reed beds. Muskellunge – Good: Successful anglers are fishing the docks and weed lines. Yellow Bass – Good: Anglers are catching yellows in a variety of locations. Some are being caught on the main lake rock reefs, Gilmores Reef, the Baptist camp area, or in the little lake in 5-6 feet of water. Use a small jig tipped with a piece of worm. The outlet on the main lake has also been producing lately. Early morning bite is best.
Channel Catfish – Good: A few catfish are being caught along small bluegill and yellow bass.
Little Wall Lake
Channel Catfish – Good: A few catfish are being caught in the early morning and evenings using stink bait or chicken liver. A 46 pound flathead was caught a couple weeks ago.
Largemouth Bass – Good: Successful anglers are using top-water baits. Channel Catfish – Good: Catfish are biting on live bait fished on the bottom.
Iowa River (above Iowa Falls)
Fishing near Alden access has been good for smallmouth and walleyes.
Iowa River (Iowa Falls to Marshalltown)
Smallmouth Bass – Good: The Iowa River at Steamboat Rock is producing a few nice smallmouth bass. Channel Catfish – Good: Catfish are biting on livers.
Shell Rock River (above Greene)
Smallmouth Bass – Good: River levels are good, smallmouth should bite well.
Smallmouth Bass – Good: River levels are good, smallmouth should bite well.
For lake updates and fishing information in the north central area, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.
Bluegill – Good: Bluegills are schooled up off the jetties. Bluegills are very large with many 7-8 inch fish. Fish a worm and bobber. Largemouth Bass – Good: Throwing spinner baits or soft plastics for the aggressive males will produce bites.
Big Spirit Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Fish are being caught under boat hoists around the lake. Fish jigs, wacky worms, or spinner baits. Fish the inside and outside edge of weed lines with Texas rigs, drop shots, swimbaits, or crankbaits in 8-9 feet of water Smallmouth are hitting top-water along the west shore in the evening. Walleye – Fair: Anglers are catching walleye around 7:00 till dark at the North Grade. Fish above and below the slot are being caught and creeled. Successful anglers are using jigging raps, bobber and leech, or just jigging a leech. Walleyes are also being caught along the weed line in Anglers bay in 16-17 feet of water. This weed line runs east to west and larger walleyes are swimming along this edge. Fish jigs tipped with a leech. Yellow Perch – Good: Yellow perch are biting on the south end in 12-20 feet of water. Use small jigs and wigglers. Black Bullhead – Slow: The bullhead bite at the north grade is slowing. Creeled anglers are taking home single digits of 12-14 inch fish. Successful anglers are leaving worm on the bottom and fishing around submerged vegetation. Northern Pike – Slow: Anglers using weedless frogs or surface lures in the north grade in the dense weeds are catching smaller northerns. Bluegill – Slow: A few bluegills are starting to show up on anglers’ hooks with all the rain lately. Anglers fishing at the north grade are reporting catching a few 8 inch bluegills.
Bluegill – Fair: 6-8 inch bluegill are being caught in low numbers along the north bank. Fish were harvested using small lipstick jigs tipped with a nightcrawler. Crappie – Good: Smaller crappies are being caught on the north and east side of Center lake. Anglers are using jigs tipped with wax worms.
East Okoboji Lake
Yellow Bass – Good: Large numbers of yellow bass are being caught near East Okoboji beach near the boat docks. Fish vary from small to a few larger 8-9 inch fish. Throw soft plastic shad for them. Anglers fishing under the highway 9 bridge are catching fair numbers of yellows using small plastic minnows. Yellow Perch – Fair: Numbers of smaller yellow perch are being caught while fishing for yellow bass. Pulling similar baits near the bottom will force more perch into your bucket. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Fish near the inlet to upper gar along the rocks to find a fast paced bass bite. Anglers are seeing bass bedding up in upper gar then swimming into East Okoboji. Walleye – Fair: Parks Marina and Lone Tree point are reporting a hot bite for walleye. Anglers are drifting minnows along the bottom before dark. Larger walleye are being caught in 10-12 feet of water. Bluegill – Fair: Anglers are catching low numbers of 8 inch bluegills while fishing docks throughout East Okoboji. Fish small jigs under docks tipped with wax worms. Crappie – Fair: Large numbers of crappie are being caught on the north side of the narrows. 10 inch fish are being caught using pilkies, small jigs, or minnows.
Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye – Good: Anglers are catching limits of walleye on Silver Lake in Lake Park using leeches, crankbaits while trolling, or slip bobbers with minnows. Yellow Perch – Fair: While setting hoop nets 10+ inch yellow perch were seen in the west end of Silver Lake. Higher numbers of 8-9 inch perch have been seen in nets in the north bay. Channel Catfish – Fair: Over a dozen 5-6 pound channel catfish were caught along the west shore of the south bay while setting hoop nets.
West Okoboji Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Fish football jigs, crankbaits, or Texas rigs under boat hoists, near weed lines, and on the drop offs. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Smallmouth have moved off beds and are headed towards the rocky drop offs. Fish the rock points that shoot out into the main basin of West Lake, Pillsbury, Fort Dodge, or Gull Point. Use jerk baits, football jigs, or swimbaits. Walleye – Fair: Many anglers fishing off Manhattan point after dark are reporting an increase in quality non-slot walleyes. Anglers are trolling deep diving crankbaits and are picking up these walleyes as they come up the point. Yellow Bass – Good: In Smiths bay just north of the amusement park anglers are reporting a high catch rate of large yellow bass. Anglers using orange twister tails or plain hook with worm and split shot are catching yellows on every cast. Yellow Perch – Fair: A perch bite is going on in Millers and Emerson bays with 9-11 inch fish caught in 12-18 feet of water. Crappie – Fair: Crappies are starting to bite on West. Fish the bays with 22-24 feet of water. Crappies are suspending at 5-10 feet in the deeper waters. Fish a small white jig with light line to catch 10-12 inch fish. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills can be caught in 25 feet of water off the points using pilkies tipped with red worms.
Five Island Lake
Walleye – Fair: Anglers fishing just north of town bay are catching 14-17 inch walleye. Anglers using bottom bouncers are stumbling upon numbers of walleyes as they approach the shallows.
Lost Island Lake
Yellow Bass – Good: Large yellow bass can be caught under the overhang at the outlet of little lake. A large number of smaller fish can be caught near the bridge where Lost Island dumps into little lake. Black Bullhead – Excellent: A large number of bullhead are being seen at the mouth of little lake just west of the bridge while crews are electrofishing on Lost Island.
Panfish activity continues to be slow but catfish activity is excellent. Volga Lake is one of the best catfish lakes around. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small piece of worm near brush piles along the dam and other rocky shoreline. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Fish over brush piles or rock reefs. Crappie – Good: Drift along open water using a small tube jig. Channel Catfish – Good: Fish stink bait or worms off the bottom near submersed logs or along a rocky shore.
Lake Hendricks has a lot of great shoreline access. Fishing for catfish is great on a hot summer day. Bait your hook with a piece of worm or stinkbait and wait for the pole to bend. Stay hydrated while you’re waiting. Bluegill – Slow: Bluegills can be found spread out along the weed beds. Use a hook tipped with a small piece of night crawler fished under a bobber. Channel Catfish – Fair: Fish have been active about mid-day around the jetties and rock reefs. Stink baits and night crawlers work well for finicky catfish. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass can be found around the rock reefs. Pitch a jig tipped with a twister or worm alongside or over the reefs.
As of 8/20, water levels continue to be about 9 feet below normal. The siphons have not been restarted but this may change if water levels begin to impact retention basin construction. The boat ramp is unusable and will remain so until water levels are allowed to return to normal. Water retention structure construction should be completed by November 1, 2015 when water levels will be allowed to return to normal. Bluegill – Slow: Anglers willing to brave the rocks to get to water can find bluegills. Successful anglers are using a hook tipped with a small piece of night crawler under a bobber. Largemouth Bass – No Report. Channel Catfish – Slow: Little angling is being attempted due to low water levels but fish can still be caught.
New Hampton Pond (Garnant)
Renovation to rid the pond of nuisance fish was completed on August 19. The fish toxicant was applied to the entire pond and all shallow water areas. The park will be closed through September 2, 2015. Do not consume dead fish or swim or wade from the treated area. The pond will then be restocked with bluegills, largemouth bass, and channel catfish. This combination assures an excellent fishery for all to enjoy. Dewatering is scheduled to take place at a later date. Common Carp – Slow.
Split Rock Lake
Split Rock Lake experienced a complete fish kill in 2014. It was stocked with 7000 inch bluegill in the fall of 2014 and 700 two inch channel catfish and 490 two inch largemouth bass this spring. Bluegill – No Report.
Ringneck Haven had a partial winterkill in 2014 and is now overpopulated with green sunfish. The Iowa DNR is currently in the process of rebuilding the fishery. This spring it was stocked with 200 fingerling northern pike, 400 two inch channel catfish, 280 two inch largemouth bass, 5,000 inch long yellow perch, and 100 eight to ten inch largemouth. Anglers are asked to release any bass, pike, perch, and catfish if caught until the sunfish population is under control. Green sunfish – Fair.
Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)
Water levels have stabilized with improved clarity. The best spots to fish this time of year are where the tributaries empty into the river and log jams. Many types of fish can be caught here including trout. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Smallmouth bass are hitting jigs tipped with twister tails. Crankbaits imitating crawdads should turn a smallie head.
Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)
Paddlers are catching quite a few fish from lower dam down to Wilde Bottoms. Fish are hanging out near the mouths of the tributaries and log jams. Smallmouth Bass – Excellent: Successful anglers are using a jig tipped with a dark twister tail with a flash of color or crankbait. Cast around log jams and other woody structure. Walleye – Good: Successful anglers are using a minnow imitation crankbait. Fish mid-day to late afternoon. Several fish > 25 inches have been caught.
Turkey River (above Clermont)
Summertime water levels and temperatures are concentrating fish in deeper pools. Anglers can wet wade many areas to find hidden gems. Rock Bass – Excellent: Goggle eye are hitting small crawdad imitation crankbaits below Vernon Spring near Cresco. Walleye – Slow: Patient anglers will catch a walleye using crankbaits in the pools above riffles.
Turkey River (below Clermont)
Use care when paddling around obstructions. Water temperatures are in the low 70’s. Water levels are stable with improved clarity. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Fish a jig tipped with a twister tail along seams and eddies.
Cedar River (above Nashua)
Water levels have stabilized and clarity improved. It’ll be a great weekend to get on the river and wet a line. Channel Catfish – Good: Fish chubs and chicken liver around brush piles and log jams. Smallmouth Bass – Slow: Fish a jig tipped with a twister tail or nightcrawler in eddies below the dams and off current areas. Walleye – Slow: A few anglers are catching walleye but you have to be patient.
Decorah District Streams
Trout streams are in excellent condition after this week’s much needed rain. Spin fishers using silver spinner baits with a variety of shiny blades should catch fish. Look for more frequent Tricorythodes and Ephoron (mayfly species) hatches through August. Ants, beetles and grasshoppers will become more prevalent as summer progresses. Brown Trout – Good: Off color or slightly turbid water is a great time to catch brown trout. Use a flashy spinner to antagonize finicky browns. Rainbow Trout – Good: A good quality trout stream will typically have trout, sculpins, and white suckers but outstanding insect diversity. Brook Trout – Good: Seven coldwater streams in Northeast Iowa have consistent brook trout natural reproduction.
Water levels on area rivers are relatively stable with improved clarity. Reminder to trout anglers, during the heat of the summer, a few trout streams are not stocked in July and August. Abundant opportunities to catch trout continue. For more information, please call the Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.
Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)
Bluegill – Good: Float a small piece of worm or crawler under a slip bobber near the edge of weed beds around the lake. Fish early morning or later evening. Channel Catfish – Good: Catfish are biting well during all hours of the day. Fish shrimp, cut bait, stink baits or chicken livers on the bottom. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Fish weedless spinner baits off the dam and near and around jetties early morning and late evening.
Big Woods Lake
There have been good reports of anglers having success fishing for largemouth bass in Big Woods Lake.
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
The Cedar River has provided some great angling opportunities for channel catfish, walleye and smallmouth bass this past week, particularly in Bremer County. Walleye – Good: Artificial crankbaits or half a crawler tipped on a light jig can be deadly for walleye this time of year. Fish near woody structure, tail ends of riffles and off current breaks and eddies. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Fish artificial crankbaits and spinner baits or live bait tipped on a jig around rocky shorelines and tail ends of riffles. Channel Catfish – Good: Catfish have been taken on a variety cut baits, night crawlers, chicken livers and stink baits.
Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock)
Smallmouth Bass – Good: Fish artificial crankbaits and spinner baits or live bait tipped on a jig around rocky shorelines and tail ends of riffles. Walleye – Good: Fish artificial crankbaits or half a crawler tipped on a light jig near woody structure, tail ends of riffles and off current breaks and eddies.
Wapsi River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)
The Wapsipinicon River has been providing some great smallmouth bass angling. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Fish artificial crankbaits and spinner baits or live bait tipped on a jig around rocky shorelines and tail ends of riffles.
Maquoketa River (above Monticello)
Creel information on the Maquoketa River reflects anglers are having good success on walleye and smallmouth bass. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Fish artificial crankbaits and spinner baits or live bait tipped on a jig around rocky shorelines and tail ends of riffles. Walleye – Good: Fish artificial crankbaits or half a crawler tipped on a light jig near woody structure and off current breaks and tail ends of riffles and eddies.
Interior river levels are in good condition as most of the heavy rain went south of us. Reports have been good for many gamefish species on the interior rivers. Fishing reports for the inland lakes in and around Black Hawk County have been slow this past week. Trout streams in N.E. Iowa have cleared from the recent rains and are in excellent condition. It should be a great weekend to get out and wet a line. For further information, contact the N.E. Iowa District Office at 563-927-3276.
Water temperatures are in the low 80’s degrees. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills and most of the rest of the fish are about 7 to 8 feet down around the willow bats and other flooded habitat.
Lost Grove Lake
Water temperature is in the low to mid 80’s. The thermocline is down at about 10 feet. Lost Grove Lake has an 18 inch minimum size limit for bass. Bluegill – Fair. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers are catching mostly short bass along the flooded timber. Channel Catfish – Good: Anglers are picking up a good number of 12-14 inch catfish using night crawlers.
Odessa water levels are at their usual summer levels. There is flow through the system as the pipes at the inlet have been cracked open to let water from the river flow through Odessa. Channel Catfish – Good: Catfishing by the outlet gates has been pretty good. Black Crappie – Fair: When the inlet pipes are open the crappies congregate in the flows looking for food.
Water temperatures are starting to cool and will hopefully continue. The thermocline has set up at 5 to 7 feet. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill fishing remains fair; early in the morning is the best time to find them in numbers. Work the ledges and along the habitat in 5 to 7 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Good: Anglers are catching some nice bass in the shallows towards dark. A mix of top-water and soft plastics work best.
Lake Belva Deer
The thermocline is between 8 and 10 feet, fish any deeper than that and you are wasting your time. Bluegill – Fair: Anglers are picking up some bluegills down about 8 to 10 feet deep. Redear Sunfish – Fair: Found good numbers of redears while netting last week in 6-7 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Good: Good numbers of bass are being caught in shallow water along the edges of the weed beds, mostly coontail now that the curlyleaf died out for the summer last month.
Skunk River (Coppock to Mississippi River)
Water levels continue to drop. The North Skunk is holding steady but it looks like there is a big jump in water level working its way down the South Skunk.
Iowa River (Columbus Junction to Mississippi River)
The river has been coming down this week and is holding fairly steady.
Big Hollow Lake
The thermocline has moved up to 6 to 7 feet of water. Bluegill – Good: Work your way around the algae and duckweed and you can find some pretty nice fish. Largemouth Bass – Good: Anglers are picking up good numbers of bass using soft plastics around the flooded timber in 3 to 4 feet of water.
For more information on the above lakes and rivers, call the Lake Darling Fisheries Office at 319-694-2430.
Bluegill – Fair. Channel Catfish – Fair.
There is a 10 horsepower maximum (and 5 mph speed limit) on outboard motors. Walleye – Slow: Troll live bait or crankbaits. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or stinkbait.
Central Park Lake
Channel Catfish – Good.
Pleasant Creek Lake
The lake is slowly beginning to lower for the lake restoration project. As of 8/20, it is only a few inches low. Bluegill – Fair: Fish with worms in 10-15 feet of water. Yellow Perch – Fair: Fish with worms in 10-15 feet of water. White Bass – Fair: Look for feeding schools at the surface towards sunset. Try top-waters, spoons, jigs, or crankbaits.
No minnows are allowed here. Channel Catfish – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Crappie – Fair: Fish around deeper brush piles.
Otter Creek Lake
Yellow Bass – Good: Use spinners or live bait. Channel Catfish – Good: Evening fishing with cut bait or stink bait is working well.
Union Grove Lake
The lake is currently de-watered for the lake restoration project.
The lake is dirty, but it is at normal summer pool of 683.4 feet. Channel Catfish – Fair: Anglers are having luck drifting cut bait in the channel.
Cedar River (Cedar Rapids to Moscow)
Channel Catfish – Fair: Anglers fishing in the Cedar Rapids area have been doing well below the dams.
For more information, contact the Lake Macbride Fisheries Station at 319-624-3615.
Largemouth Bass – Good: Fish top-water lures in the mornings and evenings. Look for areas where the cedar trees are sticking out the water for the best action. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a chunk of night crawler. Target areas along the shoreline and around aquatic vegetation.
Red Haw Lake
Bluegill – Fair: Anglers are catching bluegill on night crawlers. Try areas along the shoreline. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use a rubber worm or a spinner bait along the fishing jetties. Work the face of the dam with the same presentations. Channel Catfish – Fair: Fish night crawlers or chicken liver around the fishing jetties.
Hawthorn Lake (aka Barnes City Lake)
Hawthorn Lake has a slot length limit for largemouth bass and all 12 to 16-inch bass must be released immediately. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Fish spinner baits or crankbaits in areas with rock. Bluegill – Fair: Fish small jigs or chunks of night crawler under a bobber. Some sorting may be required for larger fish. Black Bullhead – Fair: Recent surveys show good numbers of 9-11 inch bullheads. Fish night crawlers on the bottom in about 6 feet of water.
Lake Keomah State Park is undergoing a road construction project so access to the park is limited. The boat ramps are still accessible by using the entrance to the north and east of the park.
Lake Miami is full. New jetties and cedar tree piles were installed during a lake renovation project. Anglers are catching largemouth bass and a few bluegills. Channel catfish have been stocked.
Lake Sugema has a 12-18 inch protected slot length limit for largemouth bass. Anglers are encouraged to harvest largemouth bass less than 12 inches in length to improve overall largemouth bass growth. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Fish crankbaits around the jetties and the rocks along the dam. Try top-water lures in the early mornings and evenings. Bluegill – Fair: Fish a chunk of night crawler about 12 inches below a bobber. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use liver or crawdads.
The current lake level is 918.87. The water temperature is 79 degrees. Lake Rathbun contains zebra mussels so make sure to properly drain, clean, and dry boats before transporting to another water body. Spray boats and trailers with high pressure hot water (above 104 degrees) or let them dry for at least 10 days (5 days in the sun). Crappie – Fair: Anglers have had some success trolling crankbaits and catching suspended crappies. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or chicken liver in places where water is flowing into the lake. Walleye – Slow: Try areas around submerged points. Crankbaits that mimic shad are good this time of year. Drifting or trolling night crawlers in these same areas can also produce some fish.
Take your trash with you so your favorite fishing spot is clean and litter free. Contact the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406 with questions regarding angling in south central Iowa.
Mississippi River Pool 12
The water level is near 5.2 feet at Dubuque Lock and Dam and 7.8 feet at the Dubuque RR bridge. This is down around six inches from last week. The river will be stable to slightly rising this week. The water temperature in the main channel is 81 degrees. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Some smaller bass are being reported in the tailwater areas. Some nicer bass are being caught in the side channel areas. These fish have been pulled out of the now shallow backwater locations. Walleye – Good: The walleye bite seemed to pick up a bit this week in the wing dams. Bluegill – Good: Some gills are being taken out of brush piles in the side channels and along vegetation lines in the lower pools. Try the insides of the wing dams. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Fish stink bait or cut bait above the wing dams or on big fallen trees in the major side channels. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Lots of sub-legal smallmouth bass are being caught along the rock lines using spinners or floating worms. Northern Pike – Good: Lots of reports of pike, especially anglers fishing for bass. The last few seasons the pike spawns have been fantastic and the fishery for pike is responding. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: A simple egg sinker rig fished in 6 to 10 feet of moving water is all that is needed to catch drum. Bait with crayfish or worms. The larger crayfish you use the larger drum you will catch.
Mississippi River Pool 13
The water level is around 5.0 feet at Bellevue and may rise slightly. The main channel temperature is 81 degrees. The water is generally clear. Anglers report mixed fishing but the rain seemed to have triggered a bite in some species. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Look for clearer water especially in weed bed locations. Bass are not moving quickly out of the shallow backwaters this year. Usually low water makes them vulnerable along the rock piles near the channel border. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Smallies are biting on small spinners or crankbaits along the rock shorelines. Walleye – Good: Lots of activity again fishing for walleyes on wing dams. We have had good reproduction the past two years for walleye and these fish might still be short of the 15 inch length limit. The bite seemed to pick up a bit by anglers using worms on the wing dams. Bluegill – Fair: Finding good consistent bluegill fishing is a challenge now but it could pick up soon. Try the insides of wing dams as the water recedes. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Fish stink bait above the wing dams or on big fallen trees in the major side channels. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: A simple egg sinker rig fished in 4 to 10 feet of moving water is all that is needed to catch drum. Bait with crayfish or worms. Northern Pike – Good: Strong northern pike populations are evident throughout Pool 13. Most came off of flashy spinners and crank baits.
Mississippi River Pool 14
The water level is 5.6 feet at Fulton, 9.9 feet at Camanche, and 4.7 feet above the dam at LeClaire. All water level readings are up from last week. The water temperature in the main channel is at 80 degrees. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Good populations of bass exist in Pool 14. Some bass have moved into the bigger backwater areas and clearer waters. Use frog imitations in the weed lines. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Fish stinkbait above the wing dams or on big fallen trees in the major side channels. Move often if not catching channel catfish. Use cut bait to catch bigger channel cats. Bluegill – Fair: With the water receding most bluegills are moving out to the channel border. Fish along rock or bush piles in the major side channels. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Fish spinners or jigs close to exposed rocky areas. Northern Pike – Good: Pike were caught this week in good numbers in Pool 14. Most people who catch pike are generally bass fishing throwing white spinners or crankbaits. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum can be caught easily in areas of modest current and depths in 6 to 10 feet of water. Boat ramp areas often have good access to freshwater drum fishing. Simple egg sinker and worm rigs work best. Walleye – Fair: A few “short” walleyes were caught on the wing dams.
Mississippi River Pool 15
The water level is 5.7 feet at Rock Island. The water temperature is around 80 degrees. Eagles Landing and Leach park are two nice areas to put in and enjoy fishing on Pool 15. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Launch at Eagles Landing in Bettendorf and fish near smaller tributary mouths above and below the park. Use worms or stink bait but move often if you are not successful. Catfish will bite within the first 15 minutes or so. If you do not catch any in that amount of time, move on. Cut bait works best for catching larger catfish. Flathead Catfish – Fair: Some flatheads were caught mixed in with the channel catfish by anglers using worms or live bait. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum are a consistent biter this time of year. A simple rig with worms and an egg sinker works best. Use large crayfish to catch larger drum. Some are being reported on crankbaits too.
Significant rains were experienced in the district and it clouded some of the tributary streams. It also seemed to trigger a bite with some species. Conditions for fishing the river are excellent so get out and enjoy the late summer/fall fishing on America’s River.
Mississippi River Pool 16
Tailwater stage is 5.22 feet at Lock and Dam 15 in Davenport is. The river has muddied some with recent rains. Fishing is being reported as slow. Largemouth Bass – No Report: With the low water conditions look for bass in areas with some current. Fish flowing sloughs around brush piles and logs. Walleye – Slow: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Cast or troll crankbaits. Using three-way rigs with night crawlers or jigs with night crawlers on the wing dams works too. Walleye fishing has been slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel catfish are being caught around the mouth of the Rock River and in Sylvan Slough. Fish on the bottom with night crawlers, shad, or stink bait. Try fishing above the snags and log jams along the main channel and side channels. Smallmouth Bass – No Report: Look for smallmouth around rock and current. Cast crankbaits to the rock.
Mississippi River Pool 17
Tailwater stage is 4.06 feet at Lock and Dam 16 at Muscatine. Fishing has been slow. Channel Catfish – No Report: Look for channel catfish in brush piles and snags along the main channel and in side channels. Use stink bait, cut bait, or night crawlers. Some channel catfish can also be caught fishing on the wing dams. Walleye – No Report: Look for walleyes on the wing dams casting or trolling crankbaits or pulling three-way rigs with crawlers. Some walleyes can be caught trolling crankbaits along GPC. Largemouth Bass – No Report: Look for largemouth bass in the backwaters and sloughs around brush piles and stumps. Cast shallow running crankbaits or spinner baits. Pitching plastics to brush works too.
Mississippi River Pool 18
Tailwater stage is 4.73 feet at Lock and Dam 17 above New Boston and has fallen the past week. We have not received any fishing reports for this pool. Channel Catfish – No Report: Look for channel catfish in the side channels and along the main channel. Fish above brush piles and snags with stinkbait, cut bait, or night crawlers. Walleye – No Report: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Troll or cast crankbaits or pull three-way rigs with crawlers. White Bass – No Report: Look for white bass by the Lock and Dam, the outlet of Lake Odessa, or on the wing dams. Cast crankbaits, in-line spinners, or jigs and twister tails.
Mississippi River Pool 19
Tailwater stage is 2.62 feet at Lock and Dam 18 above Burlington. We have not received any fishing report information for this pool. Channel Catfish – No Report: Look for channel catfish in brush piles and snags along the main channel or side channels. Fish above the snags with stink bait, cut bait, or night crawlers. Channel catfish can also be caught fishing the wing dams.
Mississippi River Pools 16-20. With the recent heavy rains the river has muddied some. Main channel water temperature has fallen to 76-77 degrees. Fishing has been slow this past week. If you have questions on fishing Pools 16-19, contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.
Rock Creek Lake
Crappie – Good: Crappie are being caught drifting panfish jigs or minnows mid-lake on the lower portion of the lake.
Big Creek Lake
Walleye – Fair: Walleye are being caught in good numbers with more fish over 15 inches. Concentrate on the upper half of the lake in less than 20 feet of water trolling crank baits or spinner rigs with crawlers or minnows. Shore anglers can pick up walleye as well fishing minnows under slip bobbers off the jetties. Bluegill – Fair: Drift a split shot and hook with crawler over roadbeds in the west boat ramp bay and at the 100th St. access. Fish the outside edges of vegetation beds in shallow water with small hooks, crawler pieces and a bobber.
Red Rock Reservoir
White Bass – Good: White bass action has slowed after the cool start to the week, but normal temperatures returning for the weekend should help the bite. Find areas where gizzard shad are concentrated and busting on the surface. Areas that have been better recently include Ranger Point and the beach area by the dam. Cast or troll spoons and shad imitating crank baits. Shallow diving chrome or firetiger colored baits work well.
Channel Catfish – Good: Drift cut bait above the mile long bridge. White Bass – Fair: White bass are in their summer pattern and being caught trolling spoons and crankbaits out from Sandpiper beach, the Oak Grove Recreation Area, around the mile long bridge and along the face of the dam.
Des Moines River (Stratford to Saylorville Lake)
Channel Catfish – Good: Water levels have bumped up again making for good conditions to get boats back on the river. Good catches of channel catfish have been coming out of the Des Moines River above Saylorville using stink baits and cut bait.
Bluegill and crappie are being caught drift fishing in many lakes while white bass action is cycling from slow to good in Red Rock and Saylorville. For information on central Iowa lakes and rivers, contact Andy Otting or Ben Dodd at 515-432-2823.
Fish surveys indicate a large crappie population. Panfish can be caught drifting. Greenfield also has good largemouth bass and catfish numbers. Crappie – Fair: Crappies averaging 9 inches can be caught drifting twister tails. Bluegill – Slow: Drift with black jigs tipped with a night crawler or power bait. Fish will average 8 inches. Channel Catfish – Fair: 2 pound channel catfish can be caught around the jetties and close to rock with shrimp.
Anglers can expect to catch 8 inch bluegills and 9 inch crappie. Crappie – Slow: Drift with white twister tails and cast to sunken trees to catch crappie up to 12 inches. Late afternoon bite is best. Bluegill – Slow: Drift or slow troll small jigs tipped with a crawler. Fish are 6 feet deep. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfish are being caught with cut bait in the upper end of the lake. Fish will average 18 to 20 inches.
Catfishing has slowed this week due to heavy rains. Channel Catfish – Fair: Successful anglers are using shrimp or crawdads. Average size catfish will be 18 to 20 inches.
Water clarity is good after heavy rains earlier this week. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass anglers are catching good numbers of bass casting the edges of vegetation and vertical jigging the roadbeds for larger fish. Black Crappie – Fair: Drift around the roadbeds and cast along vegetation edges to catch crappie up to 12 inches. Afternoon bite is best. Bluegill – Slow: Bluegill can be caught drifting small jigs tipped with a crawler or power bait. Fish can also be found in the upper ends of the lake around jetties and sunken trees.
Viking has a good largemouth bass population. A few crappies can be caught drifting. Anglers have reported catching channel catfish north of the beach. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Largemouth of all sizes are being caught casting small spinner baits with a slow retrieve or plastics around the shoreline and jetties. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfish can be caught in the campground arm of the lake and south of the beach using cut bait. Fish average 2 pounds. Crappie – Slow: Drift open water areas of the lake with small jigs or twister tails. Fish will average 9 inches.
Prairie Rose Lake
The fishery at Prairie Rose is doing well. Bluegill growth has been good with fish over nine inches being caught this spring and summer. The crappie fishing is still a couple of years away as they were just stocked last fall. Largemouth bass are growing quickly with many 8 to 10 inch fish. The initial stocking of catfish are in the 14 to 16 inch range. Bluegill – Fair: Anglers are catching quality size bluegill around the underwater reefs casting small jigs tipped with power bait. Boat anglers are drifting or slow trolling in open water areas. Largemouth Bass – Good: Many 8 to 10 inch bass are being. Channel Catfish – No Report: Channel catfish are in the 14 to 16 inch range.
Channel catfish are close to shore on the south and west side of the main lake. Channel Catfish – Fair: The night bite is best using Sonny’s dip bait or cut bait.
Hacklebarney East has good water clarity with a nice ring of aquatic vegetation. The lake has a new concrete boat ramp. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills can be caught drifting or slow trolling with black jigs tipped with a crawler. Fish average 8 inches. Black Crappie – No Report: Fish early morning or late afternoon for crappies averaging 10 inches.
Cold Springs District Farm Ponds
Some farm ponds may have turbid water after heavy rains earlier in the week. Panfish are in deeper water during the summer. Largemouth bass hang around structure and along weed edges. Catfish are close to structure. Always get permission to fish privately owned ponds. . Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast along vegetation and around structure to catch bass in their summer pattern. Bluegill – Fair: Fish small jigs and a crawler 4 feet under a bobber with a very slow retrieve. Crappie – Fair: Crappie will be in 4 to 6 feet of water around structure. Cast jigs or minnows under a bobber. Channel Catfish – Fair: Fish cut bait around sunken logs and along vegetation edges.
The southwest district experienced heavy rains earlier in the week. Water temperatures have dropped below 80 degrees. For more information, call the Cold Springs District Office at 712- 769-2587.
Crappie – Slow: Crappies up to 10 inches have been caught using jigs or minnows fished near the fish mounds. Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel catfish of all sizes have been caught near rocky shoreline areas and the fish mounds.
West Lake (Osceola)
The marina has reopened to the public.
Little River Watershed Lake
Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel catfish up to 22 inches have been caught using liver or night crawlers fished near rock reefs. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Largemouth bass up to 17 inches have been caught using crankbaits fished along weed lines.
Green Valley Lake
Largemouth Bass – Fair: Largemouth bass up to 18 inches have been caught using crankbaits fished near the cedar tree piles.
Twelve Mile Creek Lake
Yellow Perch – Slow: Yellow perch up to 11 inches have been caught using jigs and worms fished near the road bed.
Water temperature in most Mount Ayr District lakes is approximately 80 degrees. The district includes Page, Taylor, Adams, Union, Ringgold, Decatur, Clarke and Madison counties. For more information, call 641-464-3108.
Missouri River (Sioux City to Little Sioux)
Channel Catfish – Fair: Anglers are catching channel catfish with worms and stink bait in the mouths of incoming rivers, creeks, around brush piles, and below wing dikes. Flathead Catfish – Good: Flathead fishing is good on trotlines/rod and reel using live baits. Chubs work; try bluegills/green sunfish if that isn’t working. Blue Catfish – Fair: A few blue cats have been caught in this stretch. Fresh cut bait works well.
Missouri River (Little Sioux to Council Bluffs)
Channel Catfish – Fair: Successful anglers are using stinkbait and worms. Try cut bait for larger fish. Fish below wing dikes and in slower portions of the Missouri. Catfish are also being caught in the mouth of tributary streams and rivers. Flathead Catfish – Good: Flathead catfish continue to be caught on trotlines and rod and reel using chubs, green sunfish and live baits. Blue Catfish – Good: Blue catfish are being caught on fresh cut bait and live bait.