Saturday Morning Fishing Report: Angling is Rated Fair on Area Lakes

High heat index temperatures and possible rain are forecast for the weekend. Saturday there is a 30% chance of showers and thunderstorms before 2pm. Partly sunny, with a high in the mid 80s. Winds will be out of the south around 7 to 10 mph. That will lead to a 20% chance of evening showers on Saturday night with lows near 70. Rain will return on Sunday afternoon with the high near 90. Be prepared for heat index values near 100 as you venture out onto the lake or river.

Stay safe when fishing this summer with these tips:

  • Try a new fishing spot — if your regular fishing location is popular and busy, try out a new one that is not so crowded.
  • Once you find your spot, keep at least 6 feet of distance between you and other groups.
  • Stick with your immediate family, but keep groups to fewer than 10 people.
  • Bring lures from home instead of buying bait to minimize your interaction with other people.
  • Bring hand sanitizer and wash your hands often.
This weekly fishing report is compiled from information gathered from local bait shops, angler creel surveys and county and state parks staff. You can check the activity of your favorite lake or stretch of river within each district, including which species are being caught, a rating of the bite (slow, fair, good or excellent), as well as a hot bait or lure pattern.

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Water clarity is good. Bluegill – Fair: Cast a small jig fished under a bobber near submerged structure along shore in 5-10 feet of water. Try small popping plugs on a fly rod on calm evenings. Cast plugs around downed trees along the shoreline. Try drifting down the middle of the lake with a 1/16 ounce leadhead to find suspended fish. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast traditional bass lures near submerged woody structure throughout the lake and along weed lines in the southern part of the lake.

Black Hawk Lake
Surface water temperatures are around 78 degrees.Water level is a few inches below crest. Yellow Perch – Slow. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast traditional bass lures and plastics along shore and near docks. You can catch fish anywhere around the lake, but some of the best areas are Ice House point shoreline, inlet bay and bridge area near the outlet, and along Gunshot Hill. Walleye – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use natural baits like nightcrawlers, crawdads or shrimp fished around deeper rock piles. Try drifting at night to cover a lot of water. Target catfish around the inlet bridge, especially if there is some flow following a rain event. Bluegill – Fair. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers are picking up crappie around and inside the fish house. Many of the crappie are 8 to 9-inches, but a few bigger ones are mixed in. Use a small white jig or a small live minnow under a bobber.

Browns Lake
Channel Catfish – Fair: Look for channel catfish along the outside bend of the lake in deeper water. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Look for largemouth bass along the edges of the lotus patches and the deadfalls along the outside bend of the lake.

Brushy Creek Lake
Brushy Creek is currently being drawn-down four feet for a construction project. Launch boats at the north ramp or the west ramp; docks have been adjusted at the west ramp to make them easier to use. Black Crappie – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler or minnow on a jig either drifting or fished under a bobber near submerged woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Throw traditional bass lures, plastics or weedless lures near submerged structure and along weed lines. Yellow Perch – Slow. Walleye – Slow. Bluegill – Fair.  Channel Catfish – Fair: Brushy Creek Lake has a low-density population of larger channel catfish. Target these larger fish near shore with rocky structure using a variety of cut baits and crankbaits.

North Twin Lake
Surface water temperature is around 77 degrees. Water clarity is around 16 inches. Water levels are about 4 to 6 inches below crest. Yellow Bass – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a piece of crawler or waxworm fished under a small bobber in 3-6 feet of water near shore. If fishing from a boat, you may need to move around to stay on top of fish. Yellow bass are 6-10 inches long. A lot of yellow bass are hanging out around the dead falls and woody structure in Muddy Bay and along the wooded shoreline just south of Muddy Bay. Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel catfish are numerous in North Twin Lake. Use natural baits like nightcrawlers, crawdads, or shrimp fished near shore. If fishing from a boat, try drifting at night over deeper water. Bluegill – Slow: Try small jigs tipped with a crawler fished under a bobber along shore near vegetation edges. Walleye – Slow: Try trolling walleye in the middle of the basin using crankbaits or crawler harnesses. Recent surveys show a lot of big walleye along the wooded shoreline just south of Muddy Bay.

Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)
Water clarity is 2 to 6 feet, depending on location in the lake. Storm Lake has a daily limit of 3 walleye, and all 17- to 22-inch walleye must be released; no more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Walleye – Fair: Drift with leeches or crawlers along the dredge cuts and troll crankbaits in the main lake. White Bass – Fair: Pick up white bass from shore and in the main like while trolling. Use twisters, crawlers or crankbaits in the marina, near the inlet and north and east shores in the main lake. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try a variety of dip baits, cut baits and crankbaits fished near shore and anywhere with rocky structure or rock piles. Bluegill – Slow: Find panfish around patches of vegetation. Yellow Perch – Slow: Look for panfish around patches of vegetation. Black Crappie – Slow: Find panfish around patches of vegetation.

Water temperatures are in the upper 70’s in the Black Hawk District. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.


Beeds Lake
Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber near the shore. Black Crappie – Good: Drift fish a minnow or small tube jig. Yellow Bass – Fair.

Clear Lake
The water temperature is in the mid-70’sWalleye – Fair: Anglers are catching walleyes drift fishing a jig and crawler near vegetation. Try slip bobber fishing or jigging a leech on the rock reefs. Best bite is early morning and late evening. Yellow Bass – Fair: Try drift fishing a small jig and minnow. Channel Catfish – Good: Try cut bait or crawler fished on the bottom after dark.

Crystal Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Drift fish a minnow or small jig near the dredge cut. Largemouth Bass – Fair.

Lower Pine Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Best bite is in the evening. Bluegill – Good: Lots of 3 to 6-inch fish.

Upper Pine Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Best bite is in the evening. Bluegill – Good: lots of 3 to 6-inch fish.

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


East Okoboji Lake
The walleye season is open. The water temperature is 73 degrees. Bluegill – Good: Find schools in deeper water. Black Crappie – Fair. Yellow Perch – Good. Yellow Bass – Good.

Lake Pahoja
Bluegill – Good: Use small jigs tipped with waxworms. Black Crappie – Good: Try small jigs tipped with waxworms. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use rubber worms or other slow-moving jigs.

Lost Island Lake
Yellow Perch – Fair. Walleye – Fair.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye – Good.

Spirit Lake
The walleye season is open. A great walleye bite was seen in June, but has slowed due to warm water conditions. A great yellow perch bite has slowed down, with many yellows over 10 inches caught. As temperatures continue to drop, bites should pick up again. The water temperature is 72 degrees. Bluegill – Good: Schools are starting to move deeper off shore post-spawn. Walleye – Fair: A fairly good bite lately can also be seen from shore. Try bottom bouncers or crankbaits to cover more water. Black Bullhead – Fair: Anglers have been successful at the north grade. Yellow Perch – Fair: The bite has really picked up; fish are a little deeper than what can be easily fished from shore. Try small humps in the main basin or weed edges.

West Okoboji Lake
The walleye season is open. The water temperature is 73 degrees. The panfish bite has been great.The ability to anchor or use Spot Lock is very useful to stay on fish. Bluegill – Excellent: Schools are deeper off shore. Try fishing in about 16 feet of water in the weeds or weed lines. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Find smallmouth bass on rock piles or on the points.. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Find largemouth bass on the weed lines. Yellow Perch – Fair: Schools have started to move deeper off shore. Yellow Bass – Excellent: Easily find yellow bass while fishing for bluegill.

Iowa Great Lake water temperatures have cooled down a bit and are currently around 72 degrees. This week’s extended forecast calls for temperatures ranging from the upper 70’s to lower 80’s. The area walleye bite has slowed considerably due to very warm water conditions. The panfish bite has been excellent in deeper water, especially on West Okoboji. The overall bite should pick up as temperatures go down. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

NORTHEAST

Cedar River (above Nashua)
Repairs to the Nashua dam continue as water levels and flows drop. Water levels are falling with good water clarity. Use caution; underwater hazards may have moved. Go to the USGS Current Conditions website for more information on water levels. Channel Catfish – Good: Use chicken liver and stinkbaits or dead chub fished on the bottom in slow water. Walleye – Good: Try a jig tipped with a bright plastic tail for quick action. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Use a jig tipped with natural colored twister tails or nightcrawler in the brush piles. Black Crappie – Fair: Find crappie in brush piles or around woody structure. Use a minnow under a bobber.

Decorah District Streams
All trout stream stockings are unannounced due to COVID-19 precautions. A small number of trout streams are not stocked in July and August due to marginal water temperatures; this is an annual occurrence. To check which ones, please visit our trout fishing websiteRainbow Trout – Excellent:Try a worm or cheese bait floated through a pool under a bobber. Use an ultra-light pole and reel for fun action. Try small crappie or bluegill jigs. Brown Trout – Good: Hoppers, beetles and bugs are plentiful. Use flies imitating terrestrial insects fished along grassed edges. Use hair jigs or spinners for aggressive fish. Brook Trout – Good: Please respect private property open to angling; pick up trash and be considerate. Bead-headed midges and pheasant tail nymphs work well.

Lake Hendricks
A green algal bloom continues to limit visibility. Early morning and evening bite are best. Bluegill – FairTry a small piece of worm on a small hook under a bobber. Find fish along rocky shoreline in deeper water. Channel Catfish – Good: With warmer water temperatures, try cheese or stinkbaits. A fat juicy worm will also work. Best bite is late evening. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use topwater lures or weedless hooks fished along weed edges.

Lake Meyer
Water clarity is excellent at 7 feet. Filamentous algae mats are covering vegetation in shallow water. Fish early morning and evening when shadows aren’t cast on the water. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of worm fished under a bobber along a rocky shore. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use a jig tipped with a twister tail or worm fished along vegetated edges. Also try using a topwater lure. Channel Catfish – Good: Try chicken liver or nightcrawlers fished on the bottom :near stumps or other structure.

Turkey River (above Clermont)
Water levels are falling. You might have to walk through some riffles. Clarity is excellent. Go to the USGS Current Conditions website for more information on water levels. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Try a jig tipped with a ringworm or twister tail fished along a current break or rock ledge. Walleye – Good: Find walleye in deeper holes around brush piles. Toss a jig tipped with a twister tail near a brush pile.

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)
Water levels are falling with excellent clarity. Water hazards may have moved and sandbars are appearing. Walleye – Good: Flip a jig with twister tail along a brush pile or deeper pool. Smallmouth Bass – Slow: Toss a small crankbait along a current break or rock ledge.

Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)
Water levels are falling with excellent clarity. Sand and gravel bars are appearing. You might have to walk in a few places. Walleye – Good: Find walleye in deeper pools or around log jams. Try a jig with natural colored plastics. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Use a jig tipped with brightly colored plastics or a crankbait imitating crawdads fished in current breaks and deeper holes. Channel Catfish – Good: Anglers using nightcrawlers fished on the bottom towards dark in slower water are catching catfish.

Volga Lake
Best bite is early morning or just before dark. A green algae bloom is causing poor water clarity. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small hook tipped with waxworm or small piece of nightcrawler fished around brush piles and rocky shores. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use a jig tipped with a ringworm or twister tail. Channel Catfish – Good: Try a nightcrawler, cheese bait or chicken livers fished on the bottom. Best catfishing lake around.

Area rivers and streams water levels continue to fall. Water clarity is excellent. Expect a hot humid weekend with temperatures in the upper 80’s for highs and 60’s for lows. Pop-up thunderstorms are possible. For current fishing information, please call the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.


Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)
Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast crankbaits and topwater artificial baits. Bluegill – Excellent: Try a piece of nightcrawler under a bobber. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Try stinkbaits or leopard frogs fished on the bottom of the lake.

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
Reports for walleye has been good in Bremer County. Channel Catfish – Good: Try fishing above fallen tree snags with stinkbaits or fresh chicken livers. Walleye – Good: Cast crankbaits or a jig tipped with a nightcrawler.

Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock)
Walleye
 – No Report: Cast crankbaits or a jig tipped with a nightcrawler. Smallmouth Bass – No Report: Cast crankbaits or a jig tipped with a nightcrawler.

Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)
Reports of channel catfish being caught on the Wapsipinicon River. Channel Catfish – Good: Try fishing above fallen tree snags with stinkbaits or fresh chicken livers.

Interior rivers continue to drop and are providing excellent angling opportunities. Lakes in and around Cedar Falls/Waterloo area have been good for largemouth bass. Trout streams remain in excellent condition. All three trout hatcheries remain closed. Call the Manchester Hatchery at 563-927-3276 for more information.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 12
Water levels are expected to recede this week. The water level is near 9.2 feet at the Lock and Dam and 11.3 feet at the RR bridge.The water temperature is around 77 degrees. The water clarity is good. Northern Pike – Good: Flashy spinners in eddy areas or along weed lines will take this toothy predator. Bluegill – Slow: Bluegills are still being reported in shallow backwater areas near brush piles. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Lots of anglers are using prepared stinkbaits. Try floating worms along rock lines.  Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on an egg sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Largemouth Bass – Excellent: Lots of bass are being taken off lily pad areas on spinnerbaits or frog imitation lures. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Some smallies have moved in along the rock piles; use flashy spoons or crankbaits. Walleye – Slow: Some walleyes were being taken off the middle of wingdams in the lower water, but the recent rise in water level have hampered some anglers. White Bass – Good: Many white bass are being caught in the Dubuque tailwater on white jigs. Look for feeding schools elsewhere.

Mississippi River Pool 13
Water level is near 10.2 feet at the Bellevue Lock and Dam. The water temperature is 77 degrees. The water clarity is fair. The recent water rise hampered fishing, but it is picking up again. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Catfish are along rock lines and brush piles in moderate current. Most anglers are using prepared stinkbaits. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on a sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Northern Pike – Good: Try flashy spinners fished along old weed edges and rock shorelines. Largemouth Bass – Excellent: Bass are being taken off lily pad areas on spinnerbaits or frog imitation lures. Some are also being caught off the rocks in the tailwater. Bluegill – Fair: Try fishing around brush piles in larger sloughs with reduced current. Flathead Catfish – Good: Use live fish for bait. Lots of trot lines are being set; make sure you follow trot lines rules, especially having a tag with your name and address attached to the lines. White Bass – Good: White bass are being reported in the tailwater; use flashy small spinners.

Mississippi River Pool 14
The water level is near 9.5 feet at the Fulton Lock and Dam, 12.4 feet at Camanche and 7 feet at LeClaire. Water temperature is 77 degrees. Water clarity is fair. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Anglers are using prepared stinkbaits along rock lines. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on a worm sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Largemouth Bass – Good: Lots of bass are being taken off lily pad areas on spinnerbaits or frog imitation lures. Some are being taken off of exposed rock piles. Northern Pike – Good: Use flashy spinners along backwater shorelines or in the tailwaters for this aggressive fish. Flathead Catfish – Excellent: Try live fish for bait. Lots of trot lines are being set; make sure you follow trot lines rules, especially having a tag with your name and address attached to the lines. Bluegill – Fair: Find bluegills near the mouths of large backwater areas, usually around brush piles. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Try spinners or crankbaits along rip-rap areas. White Bass – No Report: Expect white bass to be hitting in the tailwaters and elsewhere. Look for feeding schools of fish; use flashy small spinners.

Mississippi River Pool 15
Water level is around 9.5 feet at Rock Island and is receding. The water temperature is 78 degrees; water clarity is fair. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on a worm sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Channel cats are readily biting on cut bait and prepared baits. Flathead Catfish – Excellent: Try live bait around brush piles or in the tailwater area. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Fish the rocky habitats along the channel edge.

Water level is expected to slowly recede. Water temperature is near 77 degrees. If you have any fishing questions, please contact the Bellevue Fisheries Station 563-880-8781.


Mississippi River Pool 16
Tailwater stage is 9.46 feet at Lock and Dam 15 in the Quad Cities and has risen close to a foot since last week. Tailwater stage is forecast to start falling over the weekend.   Channel Catfish – Good: Use chicken livers or dip baits around brush piles and snags along the main channel and side channels. White Crappie – No Report: Look for crappies in the backwaters. Try jigs and plastics or minnows fished in Sunset Marina or Andalusia Island Complex. Bluegill – No Report: Try pieces of worm under a bobber in Sunset Marina or Andalusia Island Complex. Walleye – Fair: Look for walleyes on the wingdams or Sylvan Slough. Try trolling crankbaits or three-way rigs with pieces of crawler. White Bass – Fair: Some white bass are being caught in Sylvan Slough. Cast jigs and twister tails or crankbaits.

Mississippi River Pool 17
Tailwater stage is 8.06 feet at Lock and Dam 16 in Muscatine and has been rising the past few days. Tailwater stage is forecast to start falling over the weekend. The ramp at Big Timber is open. The Kilpeck Landing is also open. Channel Catfish – No Report: Use chicken livers or dip baits around brush piles and snags in the main channel and side channels. White Bass -Good: Look for white bass by the dam or by GPC. Cast jigs and twister tails or crankbaits. Bluegill – No Report: Look for bluegills in the backwaters. Try pieces of worm under a bobber fished around brush piles in Big Timber or Cleveland Slough. Walleye – No Report: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Try trolling crankbaits or pulling three-way rigs with crawlers.

Mississippi River Pool 18
Tailwater stage is 9.12 feet at Lock and Dam 17 at New Boston and has been rising the past few days. Tailwater stage is forecast to start falling over the weekend. The Toolsboro ramp is open. Channel Catfish – No Report: Use or chicken livers or dip baits around brush piles and snags in the main channel and side channels. White Bass – Fair: Cast crankbaits in Belle Pocket. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Some largemouth bass are being caught in Boston Bay.

Mississippi River Pool 19
Tailwater stage is 5.60 feet at Lock and Dam 18 has been been rising the past few days. Tailwater stage is forecast to start falling over the weekend. River stage is 11.08 feet at Burlington.  River stage is 526.46 feet at Ft. Madison. We have not received any fishing report information for this pool this week.

River stages have been rising the past few days, but are forecast to start falling over the weekend. Main channel water temperature is around 77 degrees. Water clarity is fair. If you have questions on fishing Pools 16-19 contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.

SOUTHEAST

Big Hollow Lake
Cooler nights have lowered the water temperature to the upper 70’s. Water clarity still isn’t the best since the last big rain. A lot of the duckweed got washed out of the lake. Bluegill – Fair: Thursday morning (8/7) some of the bluegills were in shallow. Work the brush piles in 6 feet of water. Try worm and bobber or a small jig tipped with live bait jigged vertically. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Toss soft plastics rigged weedless into the flooded timber. See just how far back into the trees you can get your boat. Channel Catfish – Fair: Work the shallows back in some of the bays where the deeper gullies drain into the lake.

Iowa River (Columbus Junction to Mississippi River
The Iowa River dropped another 1/2 foot since Monday (8/3). Some of the big sandbars above Wapello are showing up. Channel Catfish – Fair: With the reappearance of the big sand bars. use stinkbaits or chicken liver fished just off the back edge of the sandbars where they drop off into a deeper back eddy.

Lake Belva Deer
Water temperature was 78 degrees on Wednesday (8/5). Water clarity is 20 inches. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Early morning back in the flooded timber and around and over top of the mounds at the upper end. Bluegill – Good: With the cooler weather the bluegill bite picked up, especially over the mounds at the upper end of the lake. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie fishing has picked up some this week. Try slow trolling at at the usual spots down at the lower end of the lake. Channel Catfish – Good: Catfishing has picked up over the last several days. Try along the face of the dam and around the rocks on the jetties.

Lake Darling
Water temperature has dropped back into the upper 70’s. Water clarity is 15 inches. Too many hard rains to allow it to start to clear up; water is more brown than green.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: The bite is lasting longer in the mornings with the cooler nights. Use a lure that makes some noise to catch their attention with the poor water clarity. Bluegill – Fair: Try a jig tipped with live bait fished in the rock piles out in 6-8 feet of water. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use chicken liver; work the culvert piles at the base of the rip rap around the point and back around to the jetty over by the beach.

Lost Grove Lake
Water temperature is back into the 70’s. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Early morning bite is best; the evening bite is picking up with the cooler weather. Bluegill – Fair: Work small jigs tipped with a trailer or live bait in 12 -16 feet of water. Cooler weather might bring them in a little shallower.

Skunk River (Rose Hill to Coppock)
The Skunk River water level dropped this week. Water levels are low enough that anything bigger than a canoe will have problems getting around. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try stinkbaits and cut baits; the slower currents transmit their scents much better than fresh baits.

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


Central Park Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Try soft plastics on dirt/rock transitions. Most fish are under legal size yet.

Coralville Reservoir
The lake level is at normal summer pool of 683.5 feet. Channel Catfish – Fair: Drift/troll cut bait in the channel.

Diamond Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try small jigs over deeper brush or suspended over the basin. Bluegill – Fair: Use small jigs or worms around brush piles. Channel Catfish – Good: Try stinkbait or crawlers.

Lake Macbride
The 10 hp outboard maximum limit is in effect. White Bass – Fair: Look for surface activity towards evening; throw topwater baits or small plastics. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Look for surface activity towards evening; throw topwater lures or small plastics. Walleye – Slow: Troll shad colored crankbaits or worm harnesses in 7-13 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Target shallow cover or deeper rock piles. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try stinkbait or crawlers.

Otter Creek Lake
Channel Catfish – Good: Nice-sized fish are hitting on crawlers or stinkbait. Morning and evening bite is best. Bluegill – Slow: Target brush piles or PVC structures with jigs or worms. Yellow Bass – Slow: Try small jigs, spinners or live bait fished in the shallows.

Pleasant Creek Lake
Bluegill – Fair: Some fish remain around shallow brush and vegetation. Channel Catfish – Slow: Try stinkbait and crawlers. Walleye – Fair: Some fish have been caught in the evenings. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Some fish are being caught shallow. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Look for surface activity, especially at sunrise and sunset.

Sand Lake
This is the quarry on the east side of Marshalltown. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait and live bait.  Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Look for surface activity early in the mornings. Catch fish up to 20 inches.

For more information, contact the Lake Macbride Fisheries Station at 319-624-3615.


Hawthorn Lake
Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use spinnerbaits or crankbaits along rock piles and rip-rapped shores. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try liver or stinkbait in 4-8 feet of water.

Lake Miami
Bluegill – Fair: Try small jigs tipped with a chunk of nightcrawler around the fishing jetties. Drift fishing from a boat can produce some bluegills this time of year. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use topwater lures early and late in the day. Try crankbaits around the cedar trees and along the rip-rapped shorelines. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use nightcrawlers or liver in 4-8 feet of water.

Lake Sugema
Black Crappie – Slow: Drift jigs tipped with a minnow in 6-10 feet of water for suspended crappies. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use topwater lures along the shorelines; fish deeper with crankbaits or rubber worms.

Lake Wapello
Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try topwater lures early and late in the day; target cedar tree piles. As the day warms up, try plastics fished deeper around tree piles. Bluegill – Slow: Drift nightcrawlers on small jigs for suspended bluegills. Target areas in 6-8 feet of water. Channel Catfish – Slow: Use nightcrawlers or stinkbait. Don’t fish too deep; lakes will stratify this time of year. Black Crappie – Slow: Drift jigs tipped with minnows for suspended crappie.

Rathbun Reservoir
The current lake level is 904.27 msl. Normal operating elevation is 904.0 msl. Lake Rathbun has zebra mussels, so make sure to properly drain, clean, and dry equipment before transporting to another waterbody. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Try trolling crankbaits around schools of shad. Look for the shad to break the surface as they are being chased from below by the hybrids. Walleye – Fair: Troll gizzard shad imitating crankbaits around rock piles submerged points and areas with depth changes. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try nightcrawlers or chicken liver in 6-8 feet of water.

Red Haw Lake
Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try topwater lures early and late in the day. Use spinnerbaits and crankbaits during the hotter parts of the day. Target submerged structure and rocky shorelines. Bluegill – Slow: Try drifting with nightcrawlers in the main part of the lake. Channel Catfish – Slow: Use chicken liver or stinkbait in 4-8 feet of water.

The district includes Appanoose, Davis, Lucas, Mahaska, Monroe, Wapello, Wayne and Van Buren counties. Contact the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406 with questions about fishing in south central Iowa.

SOUTHWEST

Big Creek Lake
Walleye – Slow: Troll live bait rigs or crankbaits at depths of 15 feet or less in the upper half of the lake. Black Crappie – Fair: Drift or troll jigs with twister or paddle tails in the upper half of the lake. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Cast or troll shad imitating spoons, crankbaits or plastics. Look for schools of young shad breaking the surface of the water to find feeding wipers.

Des Moines River (Saylorville to Red Rock)
Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel catfish and flathead catfish are being caught. Try live bait, stinkbait and crawlers.

Don Williams Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Drift or troll panfish jigs in the middle half of the lake. Start just out from the docks in the boat ramp area. Most crappies are 8.5 to 10 inches.

Red Rock Reservoir
White Bass – Fair: Troll or cast shad imitating spoons and shallow diving crankbaits. Look for schools of small shad busting on the surface to find feeding fish.

Roberts Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Drift or troll jigs with twister or paddle tails in the lower half of the lake.

Rock Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: The crappie bite has been slow to fair. Drift or troll jigs tipped with minnows. Crappies larger than 9 inches are uncommon. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catch catfish from shore with stinkbaits and cut bait.

For more information on Central Iowa lakes and rivers, call Ben Dodd at 641-891-3795 or Andy Otting at 515-204-5885.


Lake Anita
Bluegill – Slow: Drift or troll small jigs tipped with berkly or nightcrawlers in 6 to 8 feet of water. Black Crappie – Fair: Best bite is early morning around tree piles and along the two road beds in the lake. Largemouth Bass – Good: Anita has a good bass population. Find fish along vegetation edges and around tree piles. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfish are being caught on top of the two roadbeds in the lake.

Lake Manawa
Zebra mussels were found in Lake Manawa; clean, drain and dry your boat when leaving the lake. Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel catfish are close to shore. Fish are all sizes in the lake. White Crappie – Fair: A few large white crappies are being caught on the west shore. Walleye – Fair: A few anglers are having good success trolling crankbaits using planner boards. Don’t overlook running a crawler through the dredge cuts. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Catch wipers where water is entering the lake.

Littlefield Lake
Littlefield has a good ring of aquatic vegetation. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills have moved around the cedar tree piles in the lake. Largemouth Bass – Good: There is a large number of 12 to 14-inch fish in the lake. Channel Catfish – Good: Cast cut or stinkbait along the dam to catch 2-4 pound channel catfish.

Meadow Lake
Water clarity is fair. Bluegill – Fair: Anglers report catching bluegills slow trolling and drifting. Fish average 8 inches. Largemouth Bass – No Report: There is a good population of largemouth bass up to 18 inches in the lake.

Prairie Rose Lake
Water temperature is 80 degrees. Bluegill – Fair: Anglers report good bluegill fishing in the mornings trolling or drifting small jigs. Black Crappie – Slow: There is a small population of large black crappies in the lake. Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel catfish are being caught around the jetties and underwater reefs. Fish average 2 to 4 pounds. Largemouth Bass – Good: A large population of 12 to 14-inch bass offer fun catch and release fishing. 

Viking Lake
Viking Lake is six feet low. Black Crappie – Good: Slowly troll jigs over humps and drop-offs in the lake. Fish average 9 inches. Largemouth Bass – Good: Anglers are catching bass in tree piles using plastics. Channel Catfish – Fair: Cast stinkbait around tree piles to catch fish up to 6 pounds.

For more information on lakes in the Southwest District call the Cold Springs office at 712-769-2587.


Green Valley Lake
Largemouth Bass
 – Slow: Use jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles to catch largemouth bass up to 20 inches. Black Crappie – Slow: Catch crappie up to 9 inches with jigs tipped with live bait fished near cedar tree brush piles. Bluegill – Slow: Catch bluegill up to 7.5 inches with jigs tipped with live bait fished near the fishing jetties or cedar tree brush piles.

Lake Icaria
Bluegill – Slow: Catch bluegill of all sizes with nightcrawlers fished under a bobber along the fish mounds. Channel Catfish – Good: Use nightcrawlers fished along rocky shoreline areas to catch channel catfish of all sizes.

Little River Watershed Lake
Bluegill – Slow: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished near cedar tree brush piles to catch bluegill up to 8.5 inches. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Catch largemouth bass up to 20 inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or along weed lines.

Three Mile Lake
Walleye – Slow: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished along the creek channels to catch walleyes up to 22 inches. Bluegill – Slow: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished near creek channels and the dirt mounds to catch bluegill of all sizes.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Slow: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished along cedar tree brush piles or creek channels to catch crappie up to 11 inches. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Catch largemouth bass up to 20 inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles. Bluegill – Fair: Catch bluegill of all sizes with jigs tipped with live bait fished along the weed line or cedar tree brush piles.

Water temperature in most Mount Ayr district lakes is in the low to mid-80’s. For more information, contact the Mount Ayr Fisheries office at 641-464-3108.

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