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Saturday Morning Fishing Report: Area Fishing Rated Fair

The weekend may be a wet one for area anglers. The National Weather Service is calling for intermittent showers and thunderstorms which means those on or near the water should keep an eye out for approaching storms. Lake water temperatures are averaging between 75 and 80 degrees. Rivers are around 75 degrees.

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.

For current information, contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at the end of each district report.

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Try minnows on a small jig fished in deeper water near structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try a variety of bass baits along weed edges. Also try topwaters on calm evenings. Bluegill – Fair: Look for bluegills in deeper water near structure or try drifting down the middle to find suspended fish.

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is around 80 degrees. Lake level is about 2 inches below the crest of the spillway. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Slow: If fishing from boat, try near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point, along the dredge shelf out in front of Denison Beach, and the steeper contours out from shore near Lakewood Point. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try traditional bass baits fished along shore in areas with rocks or vegetation or along docks. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or dip baits around the inlet bridge.

Brushy Creek Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Try weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures anywhere with woody structure. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch– Fair: Use a small jig and crawler or minnow near structure in 10-15 feet of water Bluegill – Fair: Pick up fish in 10-15 feet of water. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in about 15 feet of water.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water temperature is around 80 degrees.  Water clarity has lessened this week due to an increase in algae growth. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom along shore and near rocky structure. Walleye – Fair: Pick up walleye mid-lake while trolling along the dredge cuts using crankbaits or bottom bouncers. If fishing the dredge cuts that have vegetation on the bottom, use planer boards to pull crawler harnesses along or just above the weed lines. If fishing from shore, try a leech or crawler fished under a bobber in areas with a rocky substrate.  White Bass – Fair: Troll along the dredge cuts with crankbaits and spinners with crawlers.  Anglers are also picking up fish from shore with crawlers fished under a bobber. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Pick up largemouth bass along shore in areas with vegetation and along docks with traditional bass lures or weedless lures.

Swan Lake (Carroll County)
Water temperatures are in the low 80’s. Bluegill: Fair: Fish are 7- to 8-inches. Use a small jig fished under a bobber in areas around the fishing shelter and jetties.  Also drift in deeper water with a small jig to target suspended fish. Black Crappie: Fair: Fish are 6- to 10-inches. Try in 4-6 feet of water in rocky areas near the jetties and along vegetation edges. Largemouth Bass:  Fair.

Water temperatures are around 80 degrees in most district lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie – Slow: Drift fish a small minnow or tube jig. Best bite is early morning. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber near shore.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-70’s. The lake is 5.6 inches low. Water clarity is 25 inches. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a minnow on the rock reefs. Best bite is at first light or after sunset. Yellow Bass – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a piece of crawler or cut bait fished on the rock reefs or near vegetation. Shore anglers are having success fishing from the jetties. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler below a bobber in open areas of vegetation or near the rocks by the jetties. Channel Catfish – Good: Use stink bait or chicken liver on the wind swept shore after sunset.

Lake Cornelia
Channel Catfish – Good: Try crawlers and chicken liver. Best bite is after sunset. Yellow Bass – Fair.

Lower Pine Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Use small tube jigs from the jetty. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Use a kayak to access open areas in the vegetation. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished in open areas near shore. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use topwater lures.

Upper Pine Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Use your electronics to find suspended fish or drift fish a tube jig or small minnow. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try topwater baits.

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 water temperature is 78 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. A great bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Many anglers have observed high catch rates with a lot of sorting. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are hard to target specifically, but can be caught mixed with other panfish. The bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill have been biting like crazy recently. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Pumpkinseed – Good: Fun and easier to catch from most docks. Use a small hook, bobber and piece of worm.

Lost Island Lake
Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 76 degrees. Fishing has been hit-or-miss lately. Perch and panfish bites have been good. The walleye bite is improving. Yellow Perch – Fair: Best bite is morning till 11:00 and mid-afternoon. Depths vary depending on the time of day. Walleye – Fair: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 76 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill have been biting like crazy recently with fish up to 10 inches seen. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers are working well. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Black Crappie – Good: Have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species.

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent lately. The extended forecast calls for higher temperatures again, with highs in the 80’s and lower 90’s. Fish are under more stress with warmer water temperatures; if you plan to catch and release, try to release the fish as quickly and gently as possible. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

NORTHEAST

Cedar River (above Nashua)
Water levels are very low. Fish are concentrated in deeper holes. Walleye – Slow: Walleye angling from shore or by paddle crafts to find holes works best. Black Crappie – Fair: Find crappies near submersed fallen trees and backwater areas with good depth. Channel Catfish – Good: Try stink and cut baits fished near bottom in back eddies or calm areas.

Decorah District Streams
Take time to enjoy and keep cool on one of Iowa’s many trout streams. Trout stream stocking continue to be unannounced, but streams are stocked regularly with lots of fish. Wild Parsnip is in full bloom; use care around this plant, it can cause skin to blister. Brook Trout – Good: Eleven streams have naturally reproducing populations with public access; learn more on our Trout Fishing webpageBrown Trout – Good: Streams are full of brown trout; a wide variety of terrestrial insects are hatching. Try flies imitating grasshoppers, crickets, and ants. Rainbow Trout – Good: 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 the trout fishing website. Rainbows are easy to catch on a hook tipped with a worm, cheese, or bread fished under a bobber. They will also come to a variety of flies.

Lake Hendricks
The lake remains pea green. Try fishing in the upper water column. Bluegill – Good: Find fish from shore using a small hook tipped with a small piece of worm. Channel Catfish – Good: Catch nice catfish near shore at night with cut or stink baits. Your pole might disappear into the lake if you forget to hang on to your pole if a big one hits. Largemouth Bass – Good: Find bass suspended around rocky structures.

Lake Meyer
Water clarity remains excellent with an abundance of submersed aquatic vegetation making shore fishing difficult. Best access to fish is by watercraft. Evening bite is best. Bluegill – Fair: Try trolling or fish lure or bait just above vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Good: All size bass are taking a jig tipped with twister tail running over top of aquatic plants.  Channel Catfish – Fair: Find fish in woody structure. Use cut bait, worms, or stink bait.

Turkey River (above Clermont)
Water levels are at summer time lows. Walleye – Fair: Find walleye in pools around brush piles; use a jig and twister tail. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Find smallies in rocky pools and rocky seams.

Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)
Water levels are low. Paddlers should use caution around log jams and narrow sections in the river. Water is off-color. Walleye – Slow: Shore and paddle anglers are finding fish. Deeper holes and off-channel eddies hold fish. Try a jig and night crawler. White Sucker – Good: Suckers are providing fun action for anglers. Use a jig or hook tipped with a worm. Smallmouth Bass – Excellent: Find fish along rock ledges and eddies; use spinnerbaits or jigs tipped with plastics.

Volga Lake
The green algae bloom continues on Volga Lake. Channel Catfish – Excellent: This is an excellent time of year and place to catch a trophy catfish. Find fish in late evening cruising the shallows. Use cut or stink baits for best luck. Bluegill – Fair: Find gills near shore in the evening. Use a small jig and twister tail or small piece of worm. Black Crappie– Fair: Crappies are moving near shore in the evening to feed. Use a jig tipped with a twister tail.

Chance of thunderstorms or rain possible through the weekend. High temperatures in the mid-80’s to upper 60’s. Area rivers and streams remain low. For current fishing information, please call the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.


Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)
Channel Catfish – Good: Try stink bait, dead cut baits or fresh chicken livers fished off the lake bottom. Largemouth Bass – Excellent: Cast spinnerbaits or crankbaits off of the jetties or face of the dam. The old beach area is a popular spot for anglers. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of worm under a slip bobber.

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
The Cedar River is producing catches of smallmouth bass and channel catfish in Black Hawk County. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Cast spinnerbaits or crankbaits in and along rocky shorelines. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try stink bait, dead cut baits or fresh chicken livers fished off the lake bottom.

Lake Delhi
Anglers are catching some bluegill on Lake Delhi. Fish early morning or later evening to avoid boat traffic. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of worm under a slip bobber fished near fallen tree structure.

Maquoketa River (above Monticello)
Anglers are catching some smallmouth bass on the Maquoketa River in Delaware County. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Cast spinnerbaits in and along rocky shorelines.

Silver Lake (Delaware)
Anglers are catching some bluegill on Silver Lake in Delaware County. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of worm under a slip bobber.

Interior rivers continue to drop with the lack of rainfall in the area. Fishing has slowed as we are in the middle of summer doldrums. Black Hawk county lakes are providing some largemouth bass angling opportunities. Interior rivers are producing some catches of smallmouth bass and channel catfish. Call or stop into your local bait shops for local fishing information. Call the Manchester Hatchery at 563-927-3276 for more information.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 9
Lansing water level is 7.9 feet this week and is receding. Water temperature is 77 degrees. Notice: Village Creek and Heytman’s Landing boat ramps are very shallow. If you can not launch in shallow conditions avoid using Heytman’s Landing. Both ramps are scheduled to be dredged out in the near future. Yellow Perch – Good: Jig a minnow or piece of worm in areas of vegetation. Many small fish are being taken; larger yellow perch usually start hitting better in the fall. Northern Pike – Good: Try a spoon with steel leader fished near cold water springs or incoming tributary streams. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are seeking deep water. Try a crappie minnow under a bobber fished in areas with moderate to slow current of side channels. Walleye – Good: Find walleye on the wing dams. Troll crankbaits along structure in side channel and main channel current breaks. Worm rigs work best. Bluegill – Good: Try a small piece of worm under a bobber fished in areas with some current. Channel Catfish – Good: Use stink bait fished in areas of moderate current in side channels. Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast plastics along the weedlines of deep cuts in backwaters or fish the edge of side channels with slight current. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Use spinners or crankbaits fished in main channel rock piles along the tips of islands. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum fishing is picking up in the main channel areas; use a crawler fished off the bottom. Flathead Catfish – Good: Lots of trot lining for flatheads. Make sure you place the trot line on bank and have your name and address clearly visible.

Mississippi River Pool 10
Lynxville water level is 613.4 feet and is receding. Boaters are urged to use caution when backing trailers on the ramps due to shallow water conditions. Water temperature is 79 degrees at the Lynxville dam. Walleye – Good: Find walleye on the wing dams. Troll crankbaits along structure in side channel and main channel current breaks. Yellow Perch – Fair: Jig a minnow or piece of worm in areas of vegetation. Northern Pike – Good: Try a spoon with steel leader fished near cold water springs or incoming tributary streams. Black Crappie – Good: Some nice crappie reported this week. Try fishing in areas with moderate to slow current amongst the trees in backwaters. Bluegill – Good: Panfish have moved to areas with some current. Use a small piece of worm under a bobber. Bluegills have been running a bit smaller lately. Channel Catfish – Good: Try stink baits in areas of moderate currents.  Move often if you are not catching cats. Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast plastics along the weedlines of deep cuts in backwaters or fish the edge of side channels with slight current. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Use spinners or crankbaits fished in main channel rock piles along the tips of islands. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum fishing is picking up in the main channel areas; use a crawler fished off the bottom. Flathead Catfish – Good: Lots of trot lining for flatheads. Make sure you place the trot line on bank and have your name and address clearly visible.

Mississippi River Pool 11
Water level is 5.0 feet at Guttenberg and is expected to recede this week. Boaters are urged to use caution when backing trailers on the ramps due to shallow water conditions. Water temperature is 79 degrees at the Guttenberg dam. Walleye – Good: Find walleye on the wing dams. Troll crankbaits along structure in side channel and main channel current breaks. Yellow Perch – Fair: Jig a minnow or piece of worm in areas of vegetation. Mostly small perch are being reported; expect the size to increase by this fall. Northern Pike – Good: Try a spoon with steel leader fished near cold water springs or incoming tributary streams. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are seeking deep water. Try a crappie minnow under a bobber fished in areas with moderate to slow current of side channels. Bluegill – Good: Panfish have moved to areas with some current. Use a small piece of worm under a bobber. Channel Catfish – Good: Try stink bait fished off the bottom in areas of moderate current. Move often if not catching any fish. Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast plastics along the weedlines of deep cuts in backwaters or fish edge of side channels with slight current.  Smallmouth Bass – Good: Use spinners or crankbaits fished in main channel rock piles along the tips of islands. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum fishing is picking up in the main channel areas; use a crawler fished off the bottom. Flathead Catfish – Good: Lots of trot lining for flatheads. Make sure you place the trot line on bank and have your name and address clearly visible.

Upper Mississippi River levels remain low and are receding.  Boaters are urged to use caution to avoid backing off the end of ramps. Water temperatures are in the upper 70’s. Walleye slot length limits now apply on the entire Iowa border of the Mississippi River. All walleyes less than 15 inches long and between 20-27 inches must be immediately released. One walleye over 27 inches may be kept.  Combined walleye/sauger daily limit 6/possession 12.


Mississippi River Pool 12
The water level is expected to recede this week. Water levels are currently 5.3 feet at the Lock and Dam and 8.1 feet at the RR bridge this week. The water temperature is around 80 degrees. Water clarity is good. Be careful boating as there are many obstructions in the Mississippi due to low water. Be careful not to back off the ends of any ramp. Use the minimum amount of water necessary to float your boat off the trailer.  Walleye – Fair: When water has cooled, the walleye bite picks up. Use worm rigs. Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass have moved to the opening of major backwater complexes with the low water. Try to find deeper water in sloughs near the backwaters and you will find largemouth bass stacked up. Northern Pike – Good: Cast gaudy spinnerbaits near the mouths of cooler water streams; pike will seek out cooler water. Channel Catfish – Good: Try targeting wing dams and rock lines along the main channel. Move often if they do not hit quickly. Bluegill – Good: Bluegills have moved out of the backwaters and are along channel edges and the inside parts of wing dams. Black Crappie – Good: Some black and white crappies are being taken near tree snags in deeper moderate flowing sloughs; use a small jig and minnow. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum are on the bite. Use an egg sinker and worm rig in moderate current areas; areas around boat launches can be productive. You will catch a lot of other species as well on an egg sinker rig. Use large crayfish for bait to catch large drum. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Try fishing along rock lines or day markers with strong current. Fish are running a bit on the smaller side this year. Flathead Catfish – Good: Lots of trot lining for flatheads. Make sure you place the trot line on bank and have your name and address clearly visible.

Mississippi River Pool 13
The water level is 5.5 feet at the Bellevue Lock and Dam and is rising. Water temperature is near 80 degrees in the main channel. The water clarity is stained. Water level is  low; be careful when boating as there are many obstructions. Be careful not to back off the ends of any ramp. Use the minimum amount of water necessary to float your boat off the trailer. Paddlefish – No Report: Paddlefish season is closed for the year.  Walleye – Fair: The bite picked up some when the river water temperatures cooled.  Try crankbaits fished on exposed wing dams. Northern Pike – Good: Cast gaudy spinnerbaits near the mouths of cooler water streams; pike will seek out cooler water in the summer. Spring areas like Lainsville Slough or along the sand dunes area can cool water enough for northern pike. Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass have moved to the opening of major backwater complexes with the low water. Try to find deeper water in sloughs near the backwaters and you will find largemouth bass stacked up. Bluegill – Good: Some bluegill catches are being reported on the inside edges of wing dams. They can also be found along main channel rocky areas. Channel Catfish – Good: The bite has slowed, but you can still catch cats on wing dams and rock piles. Move often if you are not catching catfish. Bowfin – Excellent: Bowfin are readily being taken in backwater areas on small spinners or worms. They are a hard fighting fish and can be fun to catch. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum are still on the bite.  Use an egg sinker and worm rig in moderate current areas or areas around boat launches. You will catch a lot of other species as well on an egg sinker rig.  Use large crayfish for bait to catch large drum. Black Crappie – Good: Some black and white crappies are being taken near tree snags in deeper moderate flowing sloughs; use a small jig and minnow. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Find places with strong current around rocks and you will find Mississippi River smallmouth bass. Flathead Catfish – Good: Lots of trot lining for flatheads. Make sure you place the trot line on bank and have your name and address clearly visible.   White Bass – Fair: Find white bass in the tailwaters using flashy spinners or small spoons. Not many white bass are being caught, but the size has been good.

Mississippi River Pool 14
The water level at the Fulton Lock and Dam is receding and is 5.1 feet, 9.5 feet at Camanche and 4.8 feet at Le Claire. Water temperature is around 81 degrees in the main channel. Water clarity is good. Water level is low; be careful when boating as there are many obstructions. Be careful not to back off the ends of any ramp. Use the minimum amount of water necessary to float your boat off the trailer. Paddlefish – No Report: The paddlefish season is closed for the year. Walleye – Fair: Most anglers are targeting walleyes on wing dams using crankbaits or worm rigs. The walleye bite will pick up when the water temperatures cool off. Northern Pike –  Fair: Cast gaudy spinnerbaits near the mouths of cooler water streams; pike will seek out cooler water when the river temperatures get this hot. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are concentrated in some areas and have been hit-or-miss. Try along rock lines or vegetation lines. Channel Catfish – Good: Try fishing for catfish on wing dams and rock lines along the main channel. Anglers are mostly using stink bait. Move often if you do not get bites.  Bowfin – Good: Bowfin are on the bite in backwater areas and can readily be caught on small spinners or worms. Bluegill – Good: Bluegills have moved to the main channel border areas with some current flow. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum are still on the bite.  Use an egg sinker and worm rig in moderate current areas or areas around boat launches. You will catch a lot of other species as well on an egg sinker rig.  Use large crayfish for bait to catch large drum. White Crappie – Good: Some black and white crappies are being taken near tree snags in deeper moderate flowing sloughs; use a small jig and minnow. Flathead Catfish – Good: Lots of trot lining for flatheads. Make sure you place the trot line on bank and have your name and address clearly visible. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Throw small crankbaits up along rocky shorelines with strong current flow.  Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Some nice 5- to 7-pound hybrids are being caught in the tailwater area by anglers using inline spinners. White Bass – Fair: Reports of white bass working sandy shorelines in the tailwater;  use spinners or white jigs.

Mississippi River Pool 15
The water level is 5.0 feet at Rock Island and is rising The water temperature is near 81 degrees. Water clarity is good. Water level is low; be careful when boating as there are many obstructions. Be careful not to back off the ends of any ramp. Use the minimum amount of water necessary to float your boat off the trailer. Channel Catfish – Good: Try fishing the wing dams or rock lines along the main channel.  Most cat anglers use stink bait this time of year. Move often if you are not catching fish. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum are still on the bite.  Use an egg sinker and worm rig in moderate current areas or areas around boat launches. Use large crayfish for bait to catch large drum. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Find areas with strong current along rocky shorelines and that is where you will find Mississippi River smallmouth bass. Flathead Catfish – Good: Lots of trot lining for flatheads. Make sure you place the trot line on bank and have your name and address clearly visible.  Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – No Report: Try a shiny spoon or spinner fished in the tailwater pocket for this hard fighting fish. White Bass – Good: Look for schools of white bass feeding in the tailwaters.

Water temperature is in the upper 70’s. The water is receding in most areas. Water clarity is good in most areas. River levels remain low; use caution when boating as there are many obstructions. It is easy to back your trailer off the ends of ramps at these levels. Try to put the trailer in the minimum water needed to float the boat. If you have angling questions please call the Bellevue Fisheries Station at 563-880-8781.


SOUTHEAST

Big Hollow Lake
Water temperature is about 84 degrees. The thermocline is set up at 5-7 feet deep. Don’t try fishing much below that; there is little to no oxygen below 7 feet. Largemouth Bass- Slow: Find bass at the lower end of the lake around the flooded trees in 6 to 7 feet of water. Bluegill – Fair: Most anglers are finding bluegill back in the trees (in the shade) in 3 to 5 feet of water. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfish don’t mind the hot weather as much as the other fish do.  Drift cut bait along the face of the dam.

Iowa River (Columbus Junction to Mississippi River)
Iowa River water levels are holding steady with a very slow drop of less than a couple of inches every few days. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfishing is decent right now. The best bite is after dark or just at first light. Use stink baits and cut baits.

Lake Belva Deer
Water temperature is around 82 degrees. The thermocline is set up at 6-7 feet. Water clarity is at 24 inches with a brown green color to the water. Bluegill – Slow: Bluegills have moved out to deeper water for the summer.  Look for them in 6-7 feet of water as they adjust to the changing thermocline to stay cool with plenty of oxygen. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Bass are out in the thermocline trying to stay cool.  Slow drift/troll crankbaits down 6 to 7 feet below the  surface to find them. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfishing is improving. Catfish don’t mind the hot weather as much as the other fish do. Try chicken liver and cut bait in above 8 feet of water. Redear Sunfish – Slow: Work along the old creek channel running down through the lake where sunfish are hunting snails to eat.

Lake Darling
Water temperature is 84 degrees. The scum on top of the water is a mix of dust, planktonic algae, and pollen. The thermocline is set up at 5-7 feet. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Bass are taking it easy in the heat and don’t seem to be very hungry. Most bass remain out in 6 to 7 feet of water. Bluegill – Slow: Try slip bobbers and worm or vertically jigging in the brush piles and rock piles in 5-7 feet of water. Black Crappie – Slow: Look for crappie to remain in deeper water around the brush piles and rock piles down about 6-7 feet.  Channel Catfish – Good: Switch from the stream inlets to the culvert piles near the bank; where the catfish can avoid the heat in the shade. Chicken liver works best. Picked up with the flood waters bringing in new food.

Lost Grove Lake
Water temperature is about 82 degrees. The thermocline is set up at 6-8 feet; concentrate your efforts in this zone. Largemouth Bass – FairBest bite is after dark or near it. Look for bass near the drop off to deeper (6-8 feet of water). Bluegill – Fair: The bite picked up a little bit the past few days. Best bite is towards late evening. Bluegills are keeping to the flooded trees and brush in 6 to 8 feet of water. Channel Catfish – Fair: Slow troll cut bait along the face of the dam and out around the deeper brush piles in 6 to 8 feet of water.

Skunk River (Coppock to Mississippi River)
The Skunk River came up a little bit on August 4. It is forecast to hold steady the next few days. Water is a little too shallow in spots for the bigger flat bottom boats. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfishing picked up a little the past couple of days. Find catfish in the brush piles and log jams.

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

Central Park Lake
Bluegill – Good: Try small jigs or worms to catch 4- to 8-inch fish. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Many artificial baits are working. Most fish are 8- to 15-inches. Redear Sunfish – Fair: Use small jigs and worms to catch fish up to 7-inches.

Coralville Reservoir
Channel Catfish – Fair: Drift or troll cut bait in the channel. The upper half of the lake is best. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use crankbaits on tapering rock banks. The lower half of the lake is best.

Diamond Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Most crappie are around 8-inches. Look for suspended fish throughout the basin in 6-9 feet of water. Bluegill – Fair: Try fishing the shallow pockets. Channel Catfish – Fair: Chicken livers and stink bait work best.

Iowa Lake (Iowa County)
Bluegill – Fair: Find bluegill along the shoreline and in pockets of the weeds. Largemouth Bass– Fair: Try jigs fished along shallow structure and crankbaits in 8-10 feet of water. Black Crappie – Good: Crappies are suspended 5-9 feet down over deeper water. Channel Catfish – Good.

Lake Macbride
There is a 10 hp maximum in effect at this time; these may be run at 5 mph or less. Black Crappie – Fair: Try fishing over brush piles in 3-8 feet of water. Walleye – Slow: Try trolling or jigging in 7-15 feet of water.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try crankbaits, topwaters and soft plastics fished in shallow rock and wood. Bluegill – Fair: Try fishing in shallow pockets and around on rock reefs. White Bass – Fair: Look for surface activity at sunset.

Otter Creek Lake
The lake will be drained and restored this fall/winter. Relaxed fishing regulations started on June 15. There is no limit to poles and harvest sizes/numbers are eliminated. The boat ramp, boat usage of any kind, and the west side of the lake is closed. Bluegill – Slow: Try small jigs or worms in shallow pockets and around brush. Yellow Bass – Slow: Bass are out in open water.

Union Grove Lake
Bluegill – Fair: Use jigs or worms fished from shore. Many fish are 7- to 9-inches. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try fishing around rock jetties or troll crankbaits in 10-12 feet of water.

Wapsipinicon River (Troy Mills to Oxford Junction)
Channel Catfish – Good: The bite has been good on cut bait.

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

Hawthorn Lake
Largemouth Bass– Fair: Use spinnerbaits and crankbaits fished along rocky shorelines and fishing jetties. Bluegill – Slow: Use small jigs tipped with live bait fished around the rip-rapped shorelines. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try night crawlers in 6-8 feet of water.

Lake Miami
Largemouth Bass– Fair: Use spinnerbaits and rubber worms fished along the dam and around the fishing jetties. Bluegill – Fair: Use small jigs around the jetties and the submerged structure. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try night crawlers or cut bait.

Lake Sugema
Black Crappie – Slow: Use small jigs with live bait. Keep moving until you find active fish. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use spinnerbaits and crankbaits fished along the fishing jetties and other rocky shorelines. Bluegill – Fair: Try small jigs fished along the edge of the vegetation.

Lake Wapello
Bluegill– Fair: Try small jigs around the shorelines and the submerged structure. Black Crappie – Slow: Use jig and minnows around the submerged structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use spinnerbaits or crankbaits fished around submerged structures. Try topwater lures in the mornings and evenings. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use nightcrawlers or cut bait along shorelines in 4-8 feet of water.

Rathbun Reservoir
The current lake level is 905.83 feet msl; recreation pool is 904 feet msl. Lake Rathbun has zebra mussels so make sure to properly drain, clean and dry equipment before transporting to another waterbody. Channel Catfish – Good: Target windblown shorelines and areas with rip-rap with shad sides or night crawlers. Black Crappie – Fair: Try trolling for suspended crappies over rock piles using small crankbaits.  Walleye – Good: Troll crankbaits or night crawler rigs over rock piles and near lake depth changes such as the old river channel. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Good: Try minnows and jigs fished over rock piles or trolling crankbaits.

Red Haw Lake
Largemouth Bass– Fair: Use crankbaits or plastics or topwater lures in areas along the shorelines and the dam early and late in the day.  Bluegill – Slow: Use small jigs under a bobber. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try nightcrawlers around the fishing jetties.

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

SOUTHWEST

Big Creek Lake
Walleye – Fair: Try jigging or trolling a crawler and leeches from the marina around to the beach, the East Boat Ramp bay and the West Boat Ramp bay. Black Crappie – Fair: Troll or cast jigs with live minnows in 5-15 feet of water. Best bite is early morning and just before dark. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Troll or cast shad imitating crankbaits or spoons. Look for fish breaking the surface chasing shad.

Boone District Farm Ponds
Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast topwater baits, crankbaits, and soft plastics.

Des Moines River (Saylorville to Red Rock)
Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Catch white bass and hybrid striped bass below the dams casting shad and shiner imitating plastics or jigs tipped with shiners. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Anglers are catching channel catfish and flathead catfish below the dams (Saylorville, Center St., and Scott Ave) on cut bait, crawlers, and live bait.

Don Williams Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try live minnows fished near submerged trees or troll twister tail jigs. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill fishing is starting to pick up. Tip a jig with a small piece of night crawler and fish near trees or any woody structure.

Hooper Area Pond
Hooper Pond is almost completely drawn-down.  Access to the remaining small pool of water is difficult.

Lake Ahquabi
Lake Ahquabi is being drawn-down. The remaining pool is accessible by foot off the campground ramp, but access may be difficult.

Red Rock Reservoir
White Crappie– Fair: Drift and troll plastics in coves off the main lake and Whitebreast arm. Channel Catfish – Good: Cast crankbaits around rock or drift cut bait. White Bass – Fair: Schools of young gizzard shad are being fed on by white bass. Cast or troll shad imitating plastics, spoons and hard baits. Casting topwater poppers into surface feeding white bass is another exciting option.

Rock Creek Lake
White Crappie
– Good: Drift jigs or minnows offshore in 5-15 feet of water on the bottom half of the lake. Bluegill – Fair: Tip a jig with a piece of crawler and fish near wood. Channel Catfish – Good: Catch catfish in the upper end of the lake with cut bait, livers or stink baits.

Saylorville Reservoir
Channel Catfish
 – Good: Drift or slow troll cut creek chubs or gizzard shad in the upper end of the lake.

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


Greenfield Lake
Greenfield Lake will offer good bass fishing this summer. Anglers are starting to find acceptable-size crappies in the lake. Channel Catfish – Slow: Try cut bait or stink bait fished around the jetties. Anglers have the opportunity to catch a trophy-sized channel cat. Bluegill – Fair: Troll or drift small jigs to catch 7.5 inch bluegill.  Black Crappie – Fair: Fish tree piles in the lake to find 8- to 9-inch black crappie. Sorting is needed for the larger fish. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Greenfield has a good bass population with a high percentage of 14- to 16-inch fish.

Lake Anita
Water clarity remains good. Fish will stay in 8 to 10 feet of water during the heat of the day. Black Crappie – Fair: There is a large year class of 6-inch crappies. Sorting is needed for the larger fish. Bluegill – Fair: Find bluegills around the roadbeds and slow trolling the creek channels in 8 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Good: Find largemouth bass in the tree piles and along vegetation edges.

Lake Manawa
Channel Catfish – Fair: Try stink bait fished early in the morning. Walleye – Fair: Troll crankbaits on the west side of the lake. Cast a leech or crawler under a slip bobber around Tin Can dyke. The dredge cuts will also hold walleyes. Freshwater Drum – Fair: Freshwater drum are not targeted often. They are very good to eat, easy to catch and put up a good fight. Cast a night crawler on the bottom with a small split shot or slip weight.

Meadow Lake
Meadow has a good fish population. Bluegills will average 8-inches and black crappies 10- to 12-inches. Largemouth bass and channel catfish are also doing well. Black Crappie – Slow: Find black crappies around the deeper tree piles in the lake. Fish average 10-inches. Bluegill – Fair: Try fishing the tree piles to find 8-inch bluegills. Channel Catfish – Good: Anglers report catching catfish out of tree piles with cut bait. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers report catching bass casting the shoreline and in the tree piles.

Prairie Rose Lake
Water clarity is good. Anglers are catching bluegills slow trolling. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills are associated with the thermocline during the middle of the day. Anglers are slow trolling 8 feet of water with small jigs tipped with a crawler to find fish. Black Crappie – Slow.   Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast the shore line and the tree piles to catch 14- to 16-inch largemouth bass.

Viking Lake
Viking Lake is 7 feet below full pool. Access is compromised. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegil – Fair. Channel Catfish – No Report: Catch channel catfish from shore with stink bait. Largemouth Bass – Fair.

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

Green Valley Lake
Largemouth Bass– Fair: Catch largemouth bass up to 21-inches with a jig fished near cedar tree brush piles. Bluegill – Fair: Catch bluegill up to 8.5-inches with jigs fished under a bobber near cedar tree brush piles.

Lake Icaria
Channel Catfish
 – Good: Catch channel catfish of all sizes with night crawlers fished along rocky shoreline areas.

Little River Watershed Lake
Courtesy docks are in at the main ramp and bait shop ramp. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or weedlines to catch largemouth bass of all sizes.

Three Mile Lake
Courtesy docks are installed at the main boat ramp. Walleye – Slow: Try jigs tipped with a night crawler or leech fished along creek channels in 8-10 feet of water in the flooded timber to catch walleye of all sizes. Bluegill – Slow: Try jigs fished along creek channels in the flooded timber in 8-10 feet of water to catch bluegill up to 8.5-inches.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake
The dock is in at main ramp. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Catch largemouth bass up to 21-inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles and along weedlines. Bluegill – Slow: Try jigs fished along the creek channel in the flooded timber to catch bluegill up to 8-inches.

Water temperature is in the upper 70’s to low 80’s in most Mount Ayr district lakes. For more information, call the Mount Ayr Fisheries office at 641-464-3108.

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