Northern Pike and Walleye are Good in the Saturday Morning Fishing Report

This 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.

Make your next fishing trip an overnight stay. Take advantage of state park cabins and campgrounds near many of these bodies of water. Make your reservation now. For more information on availability and rates, visit iowastateparks.reserveamerica.com.

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature was 44 degrees on Thursday. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with crawler or waxworm fished below a bobber. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers have had good luck fishing from Ice House Point, the floating dock, the stone piers, and the inlet bridge. Walleye – Fair: Some walleye have been picked up last week. Expect shore fishing for walleye to pick up later next week as water temperatures warm and fish move shallow. Try in Town Bay, Ice House Point, North Shore, Gunshot Hill, and near the outlet as water temperatures climb into the upper 40s. Fishing anywhere with gravel and sandy bottom near shore can be productive. Muskellunge – Fair: Several muskies have been picked up this last week. The largest fish are around 38-inches long. 

Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)
Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers are picking up crappie in the Marina and near the inlet. Walleye – Fair: Shore fishing for walleye will pick up next week as water temperatures warm and fish move into shallower areas with sand and gravel bottoms. 

Water temperatures in Black Hawk District lakes were around 44 degrees on Thursday. More reports will be available as more favorable weather brings anglers back out. Shore fishing will pick up next week as temperatures warm. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.


Clear Lake
The water temperature is 40 degrees. The courtesy docks at the Island, McIntosh and Lynne Lorenzen boat ramps are in. Yellow Bass – Fair: Use minnows and cut bait off the jetties. Walleye – Fair: Walleyes are starting to bite. Try a jig and minnow off the jetties or wade near the outlet in the evening. 

Shell Rock River (above Greene)
Walleyes and northern pike are biting. Use live chubs or crankbaits below the dams. 

Winnebago River
Northern pike and walleye are biting. Try live bait or crank baits and twister tails in the slack water below the dams. 

For information in the north central area, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517. 


East Fork Des Moines (state line to Algona)
East Fork Des Moines River is currently below flood stage. Walleye – Good: Walleye activity has picked up dramatically with increased water temperatures. 

East Okoboji Lake
There is limited fishing activity at this time. Most of the public docks are in. Channel Catfish – Good: Channel Catfish are active; use cut baits or other traditional baits. 

Little Sioux River (state line to Linn Grove)
Little Sioux River is currently below flood stage. Walleye – Good: Walleye activity will continue to pick up as the water temperatures increase. 

Lost Island Lake
Good amounts of panfish are being caught. Bluegill – Good. Black Crappie – Good. Smallmouth Bass – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
The dock at the West boat ramp is in. Walleye – Fair: Walleye activity will pick up as the water temperatures increase. 

Spirit Lake
There is limited fishing activity at this time. The majority of state docks have been put in. Bluegill – Good. Black Crappie – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Fishing for panfish has picked up in the canals on West Okoboji. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair.

Expect fishing activity to pick up as temperatures increase. Try fishing in shallow areas around weed beds. For more information throughout the week, contact the Spirit Lake Fish Hatchery at 712-336-1840. 

NORTHEAST

Cedar River (above Nashua)
Flows remain high for this time of year. Rainfall amounts may cause the river to rise. Visit the USGS Current Water Data website for more information. Walleye – Excellent: Try a jig tipped with a minnow or nightcrawler below dams in the pockets. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Shore anglers using dead chubs fished or crawlers under a bobber will find success. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Catch good numbers of 9 to 12 inch smallies with an occasional fish over 18 inches. 

Decorah District Streams
Catchable trout stockings start April 3; check the trout stream stocking calendar for the proposed schedule. Streams are in good condition, but flows remain high. Catch nice trout with jigs tipped with twister tails or feathered spinner baits. Brook Trout – Fair: Use flies or lures that look like sculpins, dace or suckers. Brown Trout – Good: Off color water from run-off turns the browns on. Try critters imitating small caddis fly larvae or gnats hatching off the water. Rainbow Trout – Fair: Try in the head end of riffles. Slowly pull a black bead head fly with a light colored scud or midge dropper through the upper and lower ends of pools for trout in deeper water. 

Lake Hendricks
Few anglers have been out. Stay off jetties until further notice; County Conservation Board staff are establishing grassed walkways. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use a dead fish on a hook in shallower water along windblown rocky shorelines. Black Crappie – Slow. 

Lake Meyer
No one has been out on the lake. Channel Catfish – Slow: Try a dead chub or some other minnow along a rocky windblown shoreline. 

Turkey River (above Clermont)
Water levels are falling, but flows remain up. Water clarity is improving.  Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Try a jig tipped with a minnow around a current break. 

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)
Predicted rainfall may raise water levels. Visit the USGS Current Water Data website for more information. Walleye – Fair: Try a blade bait or bigger crankbait near coldwater tributaries. Brown Trout – Fair: Use spinnerbaits near the mouths of coldwater tributaries. 

Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)
Predicted rainfall amounts may cause levels to rise. Catch a nice trout near cold water tributaries. The sucker bite is just starting. Walleye – Good: Use jigs tipped with twister tails or nightcrawlers. Yellow Perch – Good: Good shore angling on the lower end of the Upper Iowa. Perch 10-inches are common. Smallmouth Bass – Fair. 

Wapsipinicon River (state line to Tripoli)
Popular areas to fish are around North Washington, Frederika and Independence. Northern Pike – Fair: Use spoons or jigs tipped with a twister tail. 

Volga Lake
Few anglers have been out this week. Channel Catfish – Slow: Use dead minnows or other dead fish along windblown shores to attract a cruising cat.

Temperatures will be in the mid to low 50’s. Rain is in the forecast. You must get a landowner’s permission to fish private property, even if it can be accessed through public property. For current fishing information, please call the Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.


Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
Walleye – Good: Use jig and minnow combinations in eddies or slack water areas off of main flow. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Try jig and minnow combinations in rip-rap or rocky shoreline areas. Many anglers will catch smallmouth while angling for walleye. 

Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock)
Walleye – Good: Try jig and minnow combinations in eddies or slack water areas off of main flow. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Use jig and minnow combinations in rip-rap or rocky shoreline areas. Many anglers will catch smallmouth while angling for walleye. 

Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)
Northern pike fishing has been good on the Upper Wapsipinicon River in Bremer County. Walleye and smallmouth bass should be biting well in Buchanan County. Walleye – Fair: Use jig and minnow combinations in eddies or slack water areas off of main flow. Northern Pike – Good: Cast bucktail spinner baits or float a live shiner or chub under a bobber for some great pike action. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Try jig and minnow combinations in rip-rap or rocky shoreline areas. Many anglers will catch smallmouth while angling for walleye. 

Angling reports remain good for both walleye and smallmouth bass on the interior rivers.  Area trout streams are in excellent condition, contact the N.E. District Office at 563-927-3276 for more information.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 9
River level is 8.5 feet at Lansing and is expected to remain stable this week. The boat ramp at New Albin is now open. Water temperatures are in the low 40’s. Walleye – Fair: Walleyes are beginning the spawn. Some nice walleyes have been caught in the tailwaters over the past week mostly on jig and minnow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are spawning; the bite will drop off until after the spawn. Fish minnows under a bobber in structure off side channels with little or no current. Bluegill – Slow: Bluegill are becoming more active. Check shoreline brush in backwaters using a slow presentation as the water is still cold. 

Mississippi River Pool 10
River level is 17.1 feet at Lynxville and is expected to reach 17.6 feet and then stabilize. Water temperatures are in the low 40’s. Walleye – Good: Walleyes are beginning the spawn. Some nice walleyes have been caught in the tailwaters over the past week mostly on jig and minnow. Sauger – Good: The sauger bite has been good vertical jigging in tailwater areas. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are spawning; the bite will drop off until after the spawn. Fish minnows under a bobber in structure off side channels with little or no current. Bluegill – Slow: Bluegills are becoming more active. Check shoreline brush in backwaters using a slow presentation as the water is still cold. 

Mississippi River Pool 11
River level has risen to 9.1 feet at Guttenberg and will rise slightly before leveling off. Water temperatures are in the low 40’s. The gates are down now at Lock and Dam 10, but may be raised later next week. Walleye – Good: Walleyes are beginning the spawn. Some nice walleyes have been caught in the tailwaters over the past week mostly on jig and minnow. Sauger – Good: The sauger bite has been good vertical jigging in tailwater areas. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are spawning; the bite will drop off until after the spawn. Fish minnows under a bobber in structure off side channels with little or no current. Bluegill – Slow: Bluegills are becoming more active. Check shoreline brush in backwaters using a slow presentation as the water is still cold. 

The Upper Mississippi River levels are predicted to remain stable this week. Cooler temperatures have brought a slight drop in water temperature to 41 degrees in the main channel. Fish may not be feeding as actively with colder temperatures this week. 


Mississippi River Pool 12
River levels are 8.2 feet at the Dubuque Lock and Dam and 10.6 feet at the RR bridge.  These are down slightly from last week, but will rise a bit this coming week. Some of the smaller boat ramps in Pool 12 may still have debris on them from the high water. Sauger – Good: Some tailwater angling is taking place. High water is making it difficult to find fish. Conditions improved this week. Walleye – Fair: Walleye tailwater angling is underway. A gig and minnow rig is the most common rig used. Yellow Perch – Good: Find yellow perch in tailwaters near shore, but out of the main current. 

Mississippi River Pool 13
River level is 9.3 feet at Bellevue. This is down a foot from last week, but water will rise slightly this coming week. Some of the smaller boat ramps in Pool 13 still have debris on them from the high water. Paddlefish – Slow: Find paddlefish in the deeper holes in the tailwaters.  High water is making paddlefish snagging difficult, but conditions are improving. Sauger – Good: Use jigs and minnow. Yellow Perch – Good: Find yellow perch in tailwaters near shore, but out of the main current. Walleye – Fair: A few slot fish were caught with jig and minnows. 

Mississippi River Pool 14
River level is 8.6 feet at Fulton, 11.8 feet at Camanche and 6.4 feet at Le Claire. This is down over one foot from last week, but levels will rise this week. Some of the smaller boat ramps in Pool 14 still have debris on them. Paddlefish – Slow: Find paddlefish in the deeper holes in the tailwater areas. Please review paddlefish rules before you venture out. Sauger – No Report: Sauger fishing conditions are improving greatly as water recedes. 

Mississippi River Pool 15
River level is 9.0 feet at Rock Island. This is down one foot from last week and levels will rise this week. Some of the smaller boat ramps in Pool 15 will have debris on them. No fishing was reported to us from Pool 15.  

The main channel water temperature is 44.5 degrees; this is up three degrees from last week. Water levels are still high, but have come down a bit from last week. Paddlefish season is underway; please review snagging rules before you venture out. Many boat ramps are now back in operation, but may have debris on them. If you have any angling questions, please contact the Bellevue Fisheries Station 563-872-4976. 


Mississippi River Pool 16
Tailwater stage is 9.21 feet at Lock and Dam 15 in the Quad Cities and is forecasted to rise. Forecast may change with the recent rains. The docks are not in at the Marquette St. landing. There had been some tailwater fishing for walleye and sauger below the dam and Sylvan slough before the rains. Sauger – Fair: Some saugers have been caught below the dam and in Sylvan slough. Vertical jig with minnows or pull three-way rigs with minnows or stickbaits. Walleye – Fair: Some walleyes were caught below the dam and Sylvan slough before the recent rains. Vertical jig with minnows or pull three-way rigs with minnows or stickbaits. 

Mississippi River Pool 17
Tailwater stage is 7.90 feet at Lock and Dam 16 in Muscatine and forecasted to rise. The forecast may change with the recent rains. Tailwater fishing has been slow for walleyes and saugers. Docks are in at the Muscatine ramp. As of March 29th, the gates at the dam were in the water. The ramp at Big Timber is open. Walleye – Slow: Vertical jig with minnows or pull three-way rigs with minnows or stickbaits. Sauger – Slow: Fishing below the dam for saugers has been slow. Vertical jig with minnows or pull three-way rigs with minnows or stickbaits.

Mississippi River Pool 18
Tailwater stage is 9.85 feet at Lock and Dam 17 at New Boston. Tailwater stage is forecasted to rise. The gates at the dam are being reported as out of the water. Tailwater fishing has been slow. Sauger – Slow: Fishing has been slow below the dam. Walleye – Slow: Fishing has been slow below the dam.

Mississippi River Pool 19
Tailwater stage is 6.35 feet at Lock and Dam 18 and is forecasted to rise with the recent rains. We have not received any fishing report information for this pool this week. 

Recent rains has the river rising. Main channel water temperature is around 46 degrees. Tailwater fishing has been slow with the recent rains. If you have questions on fishing Pools 16-19, contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.

SOUTHEAST

Big Hollow Lake
Angler activity has been quiet this week, mostly because of the weather. 

Environmental Discovery Park North Pond
The trout went in the water at 10 am last Saturday. They were biting slowly at the start, but after about 45 minutes they started catching trout faster. Rainbow Trout – Good: Super dupers and rooster tails worked the best last Saturday. The trout have calmed down some by now; use worms and power baits. 

Lake Belva Deer
A few anglers were out last Saturday, but the wind was a problem for them. 

Lake Darling
The water temperature is 47 degrees. The weather has kept most anglers away.  

Lake Geode
Water temperature is trying to hit 50 degrees, but is still a little short of that. Very quiet around the lake this week. 

Lake of the Hills
The trout were released last Saturday. There are plenty of trout left in the lake. Rainbow Trout – Good: Look for the trout to have settled down; use live bait and power bait. 

Wilson Lake
The trout were stocked shortly after noon last Saturday. Super Dupers and panther martins work the best. Rainbow Trout – Excellent: These trout will have settled down; look for them in the brush piles out around the sunken habitat at 3 to 4 feet deep. 

For more information on the above lakes, contact the Lake Darling Fisheries Office at 319-694-2430.


Central Park Lake
The lake is mostly drained for an upcoming renovation project. There is still a small pool of water with fish. The relaxed fishing regulations have been extended to take advantage of these fish. There are no length or bag limits for fish in Central Park Lake. Normal regulations still apply to the new pond in Central Park. Contact the Jones County Conservation office at 563-487-3541 for more questions. 

Coralville Reservoir
The water level is at normal spring pool of 679.4′ Boating above Lake Macbride State Park is difficult to impossible for most boats at this level. The boat docks are in at Lake Macbride Park ramp and Mehaffey Bridge ramp. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfish are being caught on cut bait; most of these catches are in areas above Lake Macbride State Park, so specialized boats are often needed. Shore anglers are catching some fish under/around the 380/965 bridges. 

Diamond Lake
No minnows are allowed here. Black Crappie – Fair: Use small jigs or waxworms around/off the jetties. Most fish were 8- to 10-inches. 

Hannen Lake
No minnows are allowed here. Bluegill – Fair: Nicer sized fish are being caught suspended over deeper brush piles. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Some bass are being caught around the brush piles. 

Kent Park Lake
Fishing regulations are relaxed for Kent Park Lake only. There is no length or bag limits for fish in the lake to take advantage of the fish before the lake is drained later in the year for a scheduled renovation project. Contact the Johnson County Conservation Board at 319-645-2315 for questions about the project. Bluegill – Slow: Anglers were catching some fish on waxworms around brush. Black Crappie – Slow: Anglers were catching some fish on waxworms around brush. 

Lake Macbride
All boats may run at no wake speed at this time. All Boat docks are in. Water temperatures were around 45 degrees this week. Black Crappie – Fair: Some fish are being caught over/around brush in 15-20 feet of water. The causeway has been popular for shore anglers. Most fish are 8- to 9-inches with some bigger fish available. Walleye – Slow: Some fish were caught over structure in 15-25 feet of water on minnows. 

Pleasant Creek Lake
The lake is still down 11-12 feet from the restoration project. The in-lake construction is completed and the valve has been closed since this winter. The main boat ramp is open, but it is extremely shallow; use caution should at these water levels. Some anglers have been fishing by boat and off shore. A new lake map with the new habitat structures will be added to the DNR website soon. Muskellunge – Fair: Some nice fish were caught over the last week. The dam has been the best area. 

Terry Trueblood Lake
Trout were stocked here on March 25. You must have a fishing license and trout stamp to fish for and/or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Fair: Use small jigs/spinners or small worms/minnows. Try also other Berkley Powerbait products (dough, nuggets, eggs). Brook Trout – Fair: Use small jigs/spinners or small worms/minnows. Try also other Berkley Powerbait products (dough, nuggets, eggs). 

Fishing slowed down this past week due to the cold weather. For more information, contact the Lake Macbride Fisheries Station at 319-624-3615.


Hawthorn Lake
Channel Catfish – Fair: Try nightcrawlers along windblown shorelines. Largemouth Bass – No Report: Use spinner baits or rubber worms in the shallows as the water warms. 

Lake Keomah
Channel Catfish – Slow: Try cut bait or nightcrawlers along windblown shorelines. Bluegill – No Report: Use small jigs in the shallows as the water warms. 

Lake Sugema
Channel Catfish – Slow: Try cut bait along shorelines. Black Crappie – No Report: Use live bait presentations and different depths as the water warms. Try different colors, too. 

Lake Wapello
Channel Catfish – Slow: Try cut bait or nightcrawlers around the jetties. Largemouth Bass – No Report: Use spinner baits or crankbaits as the water warms up. 

Ottumwa Park Pond East (Trout Pond)
Trout were stocked on March 25th. Try jigs tipped with a chunk of nightcrawler or in- line jigs. 

Rathbun Reservoir
The current lake level is 904.15 msl. Normal operating elevation is 904.0 msl. Lake Rathbun contains zebra mussels, so make sure to properly drain, clean, and dry equipment before transporting to another water body. Channel Catfish – Good: Use shad or shrimp along windblown shorelines. 

Red Haw Lake
Channel Catfish – Slow: Try cut bait or nightcrawlers along shorelines. Bluegill – No Report: Use small jigs in the shallows as the water warms.

Contact the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406 with questions about fishing in south central Iowa.

SOUTHWEST

Ada Hayden Heritage Park Lake
Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout were stocked here on Feb. 9th. Use spinners, panfish jigs and waxworms or minnows under a bobber. 

Des Moines River (Saylorville to Red Rock)
Anglers interested in snagging big head and silver carp should try below the Red Rock spillway. The fish are there in high numbers and anglers are doing well. Walleye – Slow: Fishing below the dams from Saylorville through Des Moines is slow right now; test the waters for walleyes and white bass when warmer weather returns. Slowly retrieve jigs tipped with twister tails, paddle tail swimbaits or live minnows.

Lake Petocka
Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout were stocked here on Feb. 3rd. Cast small inline spinners, spoons, panfish jigs and waxworms or live minnows under a bobber. 

More fishing reports will resume when warmer weather brings anglers back to the water. For information on Central Iowa lakes and rivers, contact Andy Otting or Ben Dodd at 515-432-2823.


Big Lake (Including Gilbert’s Pond)
1000 rainbow trout were stocked on Feb. 16th. Rainbow Trout – Slow: Cast small spinners or minnows under a bobber. 

Greenfield Lake
Greenfield Lake has a good fish population. It’s a good destination for early spring channel catfish fishing. 

Lake Anita
Lake Anita will provide good fishing this spring. Find a large crappie population in the lake averaging 9-inches and bluegills up to 9.5-inches. The pontoon area is a hotspot for crappie this time of the year. Largemouth Bass – Slow: A few early season anglers are having success in deep water around trees. Largemouth bass in Anita are all sizes. 

Lake Manawa
Crappie fishing the canals can be good on warm sunny days. Manawa has a decent population of 10- to 12-inch white crappie. It’s also a good destination for early season catfish. White Crappie – Fair: Cast twister tails or minnows under a bobber in the canals. Sorting is needed for the larger fish. Black Crappie – Fair: Manawa has a large year class of 5- to 7-inch black crappie. This big group of fish will provide good crappie fishing over the next couple of years. Walleye – Slow: Cast twister tails tipped with a minnow on the south shoreline.

Littlefield Lake
Littlefield Lake has quality size black crappies and bluegill. 

Mormon Trail Lake
Expect good fishing at Mormon Trail in 2017. The lake has a good panfish population with 10- inch black crappies. Largemouth bass and channel catfish also have good numbers of large fish. 

Orient Lake
Orient lake has a good population of 10-inch crappie that will provide good fishing this spring. Bluegills will average 7-inches. The lake also has a good catfish population. Black Crappie – Fair: Cast minnows under a bobber to sunken trees in the lake to catch 10-inch black crappie. 

Prairie Rose Lake
Expect to catch quality size bluegills again this spring. The crappies stocked in 2014 will reach an acceptable size to harvest in 2017. The lake also supports a good population of channel catfish and largemouth bass will provide good catch and release fishing

Water temperatures in the southwest district are in the mid 40’s. Cool temperatures and rain have slowed fishing activity. Fishing reports will resume as angler reports come in. For more information, call the Cold Springs District Office at 712-769-2587.


Green Valley Lake
Largemouth Bass – Fair: Largemouth bass of all sizes have been caught with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or along windblown rocky shorelines. Channel Catfish – Good: Catch channel catfish up to 10-pounds with cut bait or shrimp fished along windblown points and shorelines. 

Lake Icaria
Channel Catfish – Fair: Catch channel catfish of all sizes with cut-bait fished along windblown shoreline areas. Walleye – Fair: Catch walleye up to 20-inches using jigs or crankbaits fished near cedar tree brush piles.

Little River Watershed Lake
Largemouth Bass – Fair: Catch largemouth bass up to 20-inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or windblown rocky shoreline areas.

Summit Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth bass of all sizes have been caught using jigs or crankbaits fished along rocky shoreline areas or along the HWY 25 bridge. Black Crappie – Good:  Catch crappies up to 10-inches with minnows under a bobber fished near cedar tree brush piles. Bluegill – Slow: Catch bluegill up to 9 inches using nightcrawlers under a bobber fished near cedar tree brush piles.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth bass of all sizes have been caught using jigs or tube jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles. Walleye – Fair: Walleyes of all sizes have been caught with crankbaits fished along the dam. Channel Catfish – Slow: Catch channel catfish up to 10-pounds with cut bait fished along windblown points or shoreline areas. 

Water temperature in Mount Ayr district lakes is in the low to mid-40’s. For more information, contact the Mount Ayr Fisheries office at 641-464-3108.

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