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Saturday Morning Fishing Report: Area Fishing Rated Slow to Fair

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

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature has dropped to 60 degrees. Water level is about 11 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Try along Ice House Point shore and in or on the fish house in Town Bay. Keeper-size fish are 8- to 10-inches. Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore or near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use traditional bass lures fished along shore in areas with rocks, fallen trees or docks. Ice House Point shoreline near the outlet and near the inlet bridge are good areas to target bass. Walleye – Slow: Try along Ice House Point and near the outlet in the east end of the lake. Throw twisters or fish live bait like minnows or leeches under a bobber. Walleye fishing usually picks up around late October into November on Black Hawk Lake.

Brushy Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try along shore and near woody structure. Yellow Perch– Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a crawler or minnow in 10-15 feet of water

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water temperature is around 60 degrees. Most of the lake is free of vegetation. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks. Walleye – Slow: Water temperatures are cooling down; shore fishing for walleyes should improve as they begin to increase feeding behavior. Cast twisters or crankbaits from shore.  Also try live bait like minnows or leeches fished under a bobber along shore during evenings or mornings. White Bass – Fair: Cast twisters along shore or use crawlers fished under a bobber in areas along shore.

Water temperatures in most lakes are around 60 degrees. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.


Beeds Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Largemouth Bass – Fair. Yellow Bass – Good: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Shore anglers are having success jigging a piece of crawler on the bottom.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the low 60’s. The lake is 5 inches low. Water clarity is 23 inches. Black Crappie – Slow. Walleye – Fair: 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 and around the island. Shore anglers are having success fishing minnows off the lighted dock after sunset. White Bass – Slow. Yellow Bass – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a minnow or piece of cut bait fished on the edge of the vegetation. Use your electronics to find and stay on fish.

Rice Lake
Any water west of the north boat ramp is a waterfowl refuge and is closed to all activity from Sept. 1st through the final day of the duck season.  Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber in open areas of vegetation near shore. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow in the deeper water along the homes on the south shore.

Silver Lake (Worth)
The vegetation has opened up some. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished along the edge of the vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Slow. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Upper Pine Lake
The Upper Pine Lake boat ramp is closed until further notice. Black Crappie – Fair.

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 60 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. Many anglers have observed high catch rates with sorting needed to limit out on various fish. Black Crappie – Good: Catch is picking up; crappie are moving in shallower and hanging out around pockets of vegetation. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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
Bite has started to pick up with many anglers fishing off the southern stony point and eastern shore. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Good: Good catch rate with some sorting needed.

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 60 degrees. Fish are moving in shallower. Use lead core and tadpole baits. The perch bite continues to slowly pick up as water temperatures fall. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Walleye – Good: 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. Yellow Perch – Good: Perch are moving in shallower allowing for great catch with some sorting. Try mini jigs and minnows; bring plenty of minnows as smaller fish will strip you of your bait.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 60 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie 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. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Try a shucks jigger and bobber fished in 10-15 feet of water. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try trolling with twister tails and ripple shads or shucks jiggers with a bobber. 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. Most boat ramp docks are still in. Area lake levels are low, making launching and loading boats more difficult. The forecast calls for highs in the upper 50’s to 70’s and even cooler nights which have lowered lake temperatures to the lower 60’s and upper 50’s.

For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

NORTHEAST

Cedar River (above Nashua)
Water levels are low, but relatively stable. Use caution when boating; submerged hazards may have moved. Clarity is good. Visit the USGS Current Water Conditions website for more information. Black Crappie – Fair: Use light-weight tackle tipped with a crawler or minnow under a bobber in deeper holes, backwaters or eddies. Channel Catfish – Good: Chubs and crawlers fished on bottom under a bobber work well. Two to three pound catfish are common. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Find smallies in a variety of habitats; try along current breaks, eddies or subtle depth changes.. Walleye – Good: Find deeper holes. Walleye are taking a variety of baits.

Decorah District Streams
Community trout pond stockings start this month with dates and times unannounced to help reduce the crowd size at stocking locations and minimize the spread of COVID-19. Check the Trout Fishing website for more information as it comes available. All stream stockings occurring unannounced through October. Clarity is good to excellent on most streams. All stream stockings are occurring unannounced through October. Trout anglers using any kind of light-weight rods and reels with spinnerbaits or a hook tipped with small piece of crawler, cheese, or dough can be just as successful as fly anglers. Brook Trout – Good: Hoppers, beetles and anything that looks buggy work well this time of year. Be respectful of private property open to fishing; pick up trash. Brown Trout – Good: Off-color water is a great time to catch a brownie. Try along grassed edges, undercut banks and around boulders. Rainbow Trout – Excellent: Use hair jigs, spinnerbaits or small shallow water crankbaits for aggressive fish. Thank a landowner for allowing access on private land.

Lake Hendricks
Water clarity is improving. Water temperature is in the mid-60’s. Black Crappie – Good: Try a small spinnerbait fished mid-depth. Bluegill – Good: Use a small hook tipped with a small piece of worm under a bobber fished near rocks. Channel Catfish – Good: Try worms or cut baits fished on the bottom. Nice fish are available for the taking. Largemouth Bass – Good: Find bass suspended around rocky structures or along vegetated edges. Use a jig tipped with twister or ring worm.

Lake Meyer
Water clarity is excellent. Aquatic vegetation is very thick, but is starting to die back. Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Good: Try fishing shallow over vegetation with a slow retrieve. Channel Catfish – Good: Use bait or worms fished on the bottom around stumps or other woody structure.  Largemouth Bass – Good: Try jigs tipped with a twister tail or spinnerbait fished over vegetation.

Turkey River (above Clermont)
Water levels up 2 feet from last week, but are stabilizing. Clarity is improving. Flows remain elevated. A variety of lures work well. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Find smallies in deeper pools around rocky seams and eddies. A quick hook set is best for these playful fish. Walleye – Good: Try fishing slack water eddies and deeper pools; use a heavier jig with a twister to get you lure near the bottom of the hole.

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)
Water levels are stabilizing with elevated flows. Clarity is good to excellent. Use caution when paddling; submersed hazards may have moved. Check the USGS Current Water Conditions website for more information. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Try spinnerbaits or jigs tipped with plastics along rock ledges, seams and eddies. Walleye – Good: Find walleye in deeper holes. Try a jig tipped with crawler. Anglers report 10- to 13-inch fish common.

Volga Lake
Clarity is improving with cooler temperatures. Water temperature is in the mid-60’s. Black Crappie– Fair: Crappies are moving near shore in the evening to feed. Use a jig tipped with a twister tail or spinnerbait. Bluegill – Good: Find gills near shore in the morning. Use small jigs tipped with twister tails. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Trophy catfish are plentiful. Find fish cruising the shallows in the evening. Use cut baits and worms fished on the bottom. Largemouth Bass – Good.

Fall-like feel in the air this weekend with temperatures in the 60’s to upper 30’s. Area river levels are stabilizing and clear due to minimal rainfall. Water temperature for most waterbodies is in the low 60’s. For current fishing information, please call the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.


Brinker Lake
Reports of anglers catching largemouth bass. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast and retrieve spinnerbaits or crankbaits.

Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)
Anglers are catching crappie. Black Crappie – Good: Try a minnow under a slip bobber fished near cover or along weedline edges.

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
Anglers are doing well on smallmouth bass and walleye. Smallmouth Bass – Excellent: Cast a jig and plastics, spinnerbaits or crankbaits. Walleye – Excellent: Try a jig and plastic tipped with half a crawler or casting crankbaits.

George Wyth Lake
Reports of anglers catching largemouth bass. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast and retrieve spinnerbaits or crankbaits.

Manchester District Streams
Area Manchester streams remain in excellent conditions providing many angling opportunities for rainbow and brown trout.

Maquoketa River (above Monticello)
Anglers are catching smallmouth bass and walleye. River levels have bumped up with recent rainfall. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Cast a jig and plastics, crankbaits or spinnerbaits. Walleye – Fair: Use a jig and plastic tipped with half a crawler or cast crankbaits.

Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock)
Anglers are doing well on smallmouth bass and walleye. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Cast a jig and plastics, spinnerbaits or crankbaits. Walleye – Good: Try a jig and plastic tipped with half a crawler or casting crankbaits.

Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)
The Wapsipinicon River is producing some smallmouth bass, walleye and northern pike opportunities. Northern Pike – Good: Cast and retrieve larger spinnerbaits. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Cast a jig and plastics, spinnerbaits or crankbaits. Walleye – Fair: Use a jig and plastic tipped with half a crawler or cast crankbaits.

Interior rivers may likely bump up with recent rainfall. Conditions remain favorable and are providing great angling opportunities. Fishing should improve during autumn. Reports of good walleye and smallmouth bass fishing on the interior rivers. Black Hawk County Lakes are providing catches of largemouth bass. Call the Manchester Hatchery at 563-927-3276 for more information.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 9
Lansing water level is 8.1 feet and is stable. Water is stained from recent rains with a lot of floating weeds. Water temperature is 67 degrees. Expect the bite to improve with cooling water temperatures. Notice: Dredging is expected to begin at Village Creek this week. There is only one courtesy dock due to one lane closed for dredge equipment. Two lanes will remain open for use. Boaters are urged to use caution around dredge equipment. Alternate ramps are Big Slough and Winneshiek Landing on the Wisconsin side. 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 are moving away from areas with  current. Try a small piece of worm under a bobber. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfish bite has slowed. Use stink bait fished in areas of moderate current in side channels. Flathead Catfish – Fair: Lots of trot lines for flatheads. Make sure you place the trot line on bank and have your name and address clearly visible. Freshwater Drum – Good: Drag a crawler fished off the bottom in any areas with moderate current. Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast plastics along the weedlines of deep cuts in backwaters or fish the edge of side channels with slight current. Northern Pike – Good: Try shad colored baits attached to a leader along backwater weedlines. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Use spinners or crankbaits fished in main channel rock piles along the tips of islands. Walleye – Good: Find walleye on the wing dams. Troll crankbaits along structure in side channel and main channel current breaks. Worm rigs work best. White Bass – Good: Cast inline spinners in areas of current. Look for schools of white bass feeding on minnows. Yellow Perch – Excellent: Yellow perch bite is picking up with some sorting needed for larger fish. Drift hair jigs with a piece of crawler in 6 to 8 feet of water.

Mississippi River Pool 10
Lynxville water level is stable at near 613 feet. Boaters should use caution to avoid backing off end of ramps. Water is stained from recent rains with a lot of floating weeds. Water temperature is 68 degrees at the Lynxville dam. The bite is picking up with cooler water temperatures. Sny Magill ramp has reopened after completion of concrete work under the railroad underpass. Black Crappie – Good: Try fishing in areas with moderate to slow current amongst the trees in backwaters. Bluegill – Good: Panfish are moving away from areas with current. Use a small piece of worm under a bobber. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try stink baits in areas of moderate currents.  Move often if you are not catching cats. Flathead Catfish – Fair: Lots of trot lines for flatheads. Make sure you place the trot line on bank and have your name and address clearly visible.  Freshwater Drum – Fair: Drag a crawler fished off the bottom in any areas with moderate current. Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast plastics along the weedlines of deep cuts in backwaters or fish the edge of side channels with slight current. Northern Pike – Good: Try shad colored baits attached to a leader along backwater weedlines. Smallmouth Bass – Excellent: Use spinners or crankbaits fished in main channel rock piles along the tips of islands. Walleye – Fair: Find walleye on the wing dams. Troll crankbaits along structure in side channel and main channel current breaks. White Bass – Fair: Cast inline spinners in areas of current. Look for schools of white bass feeding on minnows. Yellow Perch – Excellent: Yellow perch bite is picking up with some sorting needed for larger fish. Drift hair jigs with a piece of crawler in 6 to 8 feet of water.

Mississippi River Pool 11
Water level is near 5 feet at Guttenberg and is expected to remain stable. Water temperature is 61 degrees at the Guttenberg dam. Boaters should use caution to avoid backing off the end of ramps. The fall bite is picking up with cooler water temperatures. Water is stained from recent rains with a lot of floating weeds. 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 are moving away from areas with current. Use a small piece of worm under a bobber. Channel Catfish – Good: Try stink bait in areas of moderate current. Move often if you are not catching any fish. Flathead Catfish – Fair: Lots of trot lines for flatheads. Make sure you place the trot line on bank and have your name and address clearly visible. Freshwater Drum – Fair: Fish the main channel areas with a heavy weight with a crawler fished off the bottom. Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast plastics along the weedlines of deep cuts in backwaters or fish the edge of side channels with slight current. Northern Pike – Fair: Try shad colored baits attached to a leader along backwater weedlines. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Use spinners or crankbaits fished in main channel rock piles along the tips of islands. Walleye – Fair: Find walleye on the wing dams. Troll crankbaits along structure in side channel and main channel current breaks. White Bass – Good: Cast inline spinners in areas of current. Look for schools of white bass feeding on minnows. Yellow Perch – Good: Yellow perch bite is picking up with some sorting needed for larger fish. Drift hair jigs with a piece of crawler in 6 to 8 feet of water.

Upper Mississippi River levels remain stable. Check boat ramp conditions before you go; water levels are low. Water temperatures have dropped into the 60’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 steady. Water levels are 5.2 feet at the Lock and Dam and 8.0 feet at the RR bridge. Water clarity is good. Water temperature is around 66 degrees. At these low river levels, use caution to avoid backing off the ends of the boat ramps. Use the minimum water as necessary to launch boats. Black Crappie – Good: It has been a good year for crappie fishing. With the low water, crappie moved in the deeper sloughs and brush piles. Use a small jig and minnow. Bluegill – Good: Find bluegills along the channel border areas, especially in eddies behind wing dams or brush piles. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Some anglers are just using worms, while other are using stink bait. Flathead Catfish – Good: Some anglers are targeting flatheads at night, mainly using live green sunfish as bait. Walleye anglers are catching some on the wing dams. Flatheads are feeding heavily on sunfish and crappies still along the main channel areas. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: 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. Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass are feeding on gizzard shad. Expect angling to continue to improve as we move into the fall season. Northern Pike – Good: Cast gaudy spinnerbaits along weedy edges. Pumpkinseed – Good: Try fishing in lower pool 12 for this colorful panfish species; usually mixed in with bluegill and caught on a bobber and worm. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Look for smallies along rocky habitat with strong current flow. Crankbaits and spinners work best. Find the areas of the strongest flow along rock. Lots of little smallmouths indicate an excellent year class coming on. Walleye – Fair: Try crankbaits on the wing dams or three way rigs with a small nightcrawler. Expect better fishing as we move into the cooler fall season. Yellow Perch – No Report: Expect to see more yellow perch in the creel during the autumn months. Usually that is when the bite picks up.

Mississippi River Pool 13
The water level is near 5.2 feet at the Bellevue Lock and Dam and is steady. Water temperature is near 68 degrees in the main channel. Water clarity is good. At these low river levels, use caution to avoid backing off the ends of the boat ramps. Use the minimum water as necessary to launch boats. Black Crappie – Good: Use a small jig and minnow.  Crappie fishing has been fairly good this year as fish have been concentrated due to the low water levels. Bluegill – Good: Find a brush pile in a side channel that is blocking most of the current flow and bluegills will be abundant. Channel Catfish – Good: Most anglers are using stink bait, but bigger fish might be caught on cut shad bait. Flathead Catfish – Good: Anglers are targeting flathead catfish mainly using live green sunfish for bait. Walleye anglers are catching some on wing dams. Flatheads are feeding heavily on sunfish and crappies still hanging along the main channel with the warm temperatures. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: 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. Largemouth Bass – Excellent: Find bass chasing small shad. Try jigs or chatterbaits fished along weedy edges and rock and brush piles. Northern Pike – Good: Cast a gaudy white spinnerbait in shallow weedy edges. The bite has picked up. Paddlefish – No Report: Paddlefish season is closed for the year. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Look for smallies along rocky habitat with strong current flow. Crankbaits and spinners work best.  Walleye – Fair: Use crankbaits on the wing dams or a three way rig with a night crawler. Expect the bite to improve as we move into the cooler fall season. White Bass – Good: Find white bass in the tailwaters using flashy spinners or small spoons. They have been abundant at times in the tailwater, but the size has been small. Yellow Perch – No Report: Expect to see more yellow perch in the creel during the autumn months. Usually that is when the bite picks up.

Mississippi River Pool 14
The water level at the Fulton Lock and Dam is steady and is 5.4 feet, 9.9 feet at Camanche and 4.8 feet at Le Claire. Water temperature is around 67 degrees in the main channel. Water clarity is good.  At these low river levels, use caution to avoid backing off the ends of the boat ramps. Use the minimum water as necessary to launch boats. Bluegill – Good: Bluegills have moved to the main channel border areas with some current flow. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Use stink bait or cut shad. Still a lot of channel catfish being caught. 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. Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass are feeding heavily on shad.  Use shad colored crankbaits along channel border rocks and brush piles. Northern Pike –  Fair: Cast gaudy white spinnerbaits in shallow vegetated areas. Paddlefish – No Report: The paddlefish season is closed for the year. Pumpkinseed – Good: Try the Rock Creek backwaters for this very colorful sunfish species. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Look for smallies along rocky habitat with strong current flow. Crankbaits and spinners work best. Walleye – Good: Some reports of walleye being caught in very shallow water feeding on shad. Other anglers are targeting them on wing dams using crankbaits. White Bass – Good: Look for schools of feeding white bass in sandy areas and in the tailwater. Spinners and white jigs work best.  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.  Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – No Report: Hybrids should start feeding again now that the water is starting to clean up. Yellow Perch – No Report: Expect to see more yellow perch in the creel during the autumn months. Usually that is when the bite picks up.

Mississippi River Pool 15
The water level is 5.6 feet at Rock Island and is steady. The water temperature is near 68 degrees. Water clarity is good.  At these low river levels, use caution to avoid backing off the ends of the boat ramps. Use the minimum water as necessary to launch boats. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Use stink bait or cut shad near brush piles or along rock lines. Simple worms and egg sinker rigs also work well. 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: Look for smallies along rocky habitat with strong current flow. Crankbaits and spinners work best. Pool 15 can be surprisingly good for smallmouth bass as it typically has more rock and stronger currents than most  Mississippi River pools. White Bass – Fair: Look for schools of white bass feeding in the tailwaters or along sandy beaches. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – No Report: Try shiny spoons or spinners fished in the tailwater pocket for this hard fighting fish.

Water temperature is in the upper 60’s, which is uncommonly warm for this time of year. The water is low and clear; use caution to avoid backing off the ends of ramps. If you have angling questions please call the Bellevue Fisheries Station at 563-880-8781.


Mississippi River Pool 16
Tailwater stage is 5.56 feet at Lock and Dam 15 in the Quad Cities. Tailwater stage has risen close to a foot the past few days. Channel Catfish – No Report: Look for channel catfish around brush piles and snags along the main channel and side channels. Some channel catfish can also be caught fishing the wing dams; use crawlers or stink bait. Largemouth Bass – No Report: Look for largemouth bass around woody structure along the main and side channels. Sauger – Fair: A few small saugers are starting to be caught in Sylvan Slough on hair jigs. Walleye – No Report: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Try trolling three-way rigs with crawlers or casting or trolling crankbaits. White Bass – Fair: Some white bass are being caught in Sylvan Slough. White Crappie – No Report: Look for crappies around brush piles in the back water and side channels. Try minnows under a bobber or jigs and plastics.

Mississippi River Pool 17
Tailwater stage is 4.48 feet at Lock and Dam 16 in Muscatine and has risen close to a foot the past few days. Bluegill – No Report: Look for bluegills in the backwaters around brush piles. Use pieces of worm under a bobber. Channel Catfish – No Report: Look for channel catfish around brush piles and snags along the main channel and side channels; use dip baits or night crawlers. Some channel catfish can also be caught fishing the wing dams. Largemouth Bass – No Report: Look for largemouth bass in the backwaters and side channels around brush piles and logs. Try spinnerbaits or plastics. Sauger – No Report: Look for saugers in the tailwaters as water temperatures start to drop. Try vertical jigging with minnows. Walleye – No Report: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Try trolling three-way rigs with crawlers or casting or trolling crankbaits. White Crappie – Slow: Look for crappies around brush piles in the backwaters and side channels. Use minnows under a bobber or jigs and plastics in Big Timber and Cleveland Slough.

Mississippi River Pool 18
Tailwater stage is 4.53 feet at Lock and Dam 17 at New Boston and has risen close to a foot the past few days. Channel Catfish – No Report: Look for channel catfish around brush piles and snags along the main channel and side channels. Try stink bait or crawlers. Largemouth Bass – No Report: Look for largemouth bass around woody structure along the main channel and side channels. Sauger – No Report: Look for saugers in the tailwater as water temperatures starts to drop. Try vertical jigging with minnows. Walleye – No Report: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Try trolling three-way rigs with crawlers or casting or trolling crankbaits.  White Crappie – No Report: Look for crappies in the backwaters and side channels around brush piles. Try minnows under a bobber or jigs and plastics.

Mississippi River Pool 19
Tailwater stage is 2.10 feet at Lock and Dam 18 above Burlington. Tailwater stage has risen close to a foot the past few days. Channel Catfish – No Report: Look for channel catfish around brush piles and snags along the main channel and side channels. Use stink bait or crawlers. Largemouth Bass – No Report: Look for largemouth bass around woody structure along the main channel and side channels. Sauger – No Report: Look for saugers in the tailwaters as water temperatures starts to drop. Try vertical jigging with minnows. White Crappie – No Report: Look for crappies around brush piles in the backwaters and side channels. Try minnows under a bobber or jigs and plastics.

Tailwater stages have risen close to a foot the past few days. Tailwater stages are forecast to stay steady the next few days, but there is rain in the forecast. Main channel water temperature is 63 degrees. Water clarity is fair. Use caution when boating on the river due to low water conditions. If you have questions on fishing Pools 16-19 contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.

SOUTHEAST

Big Hollow Lake
Big Hollow was still stratified at the beginning of the week, but the cooler rains may have changed that. Still lots of duckweed. Bluegill – Slow: Most bluegill are still out in 4-6 feet of water.

Lake Belva Deer
Water temperature is in the upper 60’s. Water clarity is about 3 feet. Black Crappie – Fair: Find some crappies in shallower water at the upper end of the lake. Most crappie are still out in deeper water. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills are still hanging out a little deeper. Try slow trolling in 5-6 feet of water. Redear Sunfish – Good: Redears have moved into the shallows. Use a small jig tipped with live bait fished just off the bottom.

Lake Darling
Water clarity is about two feet. Water temperature is between 68 and 69 degrees. Black Crappie – Fair: A good number of 10-inch crappies are working the 3-5 feet of water feeding up for the fall. Bluegill – Good: Bluegills are in shallow out to the rock piles in 4-5 feet of water. Worm and bobber or small jigs tipped with a piece of worm work well. Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass are in fairly shallow feeding on crawdads and green sunfish hiding in the rocks.

Lost Grove Lake
Water clarity is 36 inches. Water temperature is 69 degrees. The lake finally turned over Sunday night/Monday morning. Black Crappie – Slow: A few crappies have made their way in shallow; most are still be out in deeper water in the trees. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegiils haven’t yet come in shallow, but they are starting to. Redear Sunfish – Good: Redears are in shallow feeding on the snails getting fattened up for winter. Yellow Bullhead – Good: Bullheads were in shallow, especially near the flooded timber. Good numbers of 10- to 12-inch fish. A nightcrawler fished on the bottom works best.

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


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

Lake Miami
Bluegill – Fair: Drift small jigs in deeper water to catch suspended fish. Bluegills should start to move shallower as the water cools  Channel Catfish – Fair: Use night crawlers or cut bait. Largemouth Bass– Fair: Try spinnerbaits and rubber worms fished along the dam and around the fishing jetties.

Lake Sugema
Bluegill – Fair: Use small jigs fished along the edge and in openings of the vegetation. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try night crawlers in about 4-6 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use spinnerbaits and crankbaits fished along the fishing jetties and other rocky shorelines. Topwater lures can also be good early and late in the day.

Lake Wapello
Black Crappie– Slow: Look for suspended crappies in 6-8 feet of water. Try drifting or slow trolling in these areas. Crappies will move into shallow water as the water starts to cool. Bluegill– Fair: Use small jigs around the shorelines and the submerged structure. Channel Catfish– Fair: Try night crawlers or cut bait along shorelines in 4-8 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use spinnerbaits or crankbaits fished around submerged structures. Plastic worms or lizards also work well around structure.

Rathbun Reservoir
The current lake level is 904.22 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. Prairie Ridge is closed for the season. Black Crappie – Good: Try trolling for suspended crappies over rock piles using small crankbaits. Jigging around submerged structure can also be productive. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use chicken liver, cut bait or night crawlers. Walleye – Fair: Troll crankbaits or night crawler rigs over rock piles and near lake depth changes such as the old river channel. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Try minnows and jigs fished over rock piles or trolling crankbaits.

Red Haw Lake
Bluegill – Slow: Try small jigs under a bobber. Look for submerged structure; these areas should hold fish. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use night crawlers around the fishing jetties. Largemouth Bass– Fair: Try crankbaits, plastics or topwater lures in areas along the shorelines.

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

SOUTHWEST

Big Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Cast small plastics or fish live minnows under a bobber to catch crappies off the rock jetties. Walleye – Fair: Troll or jig live bait rigs over shallow humps and points in the upper half of the lake in 4 to 8 feet of water. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Troll or cast shad imitating crankbaits or spoons. Look for fish breaking the surface chasing shad.

Des Moines River (Saylorville to Red Rock)
Channel Catfish – Excellent: Catch channel catfish and flathead catfish below the dams (Saylorville, Center St., and Scott Ave) on cut bait, dead shad, crawlers, and live bait.

Red Rock Reservoir
Channel Catfish – Good: Drift cut shad or cut creek chubs in 4 to 10 feet of water in the upper end of the Reservoir near the mile long bridge.  White Crappie– Fair: Catch crappies in the fall jigging or trolling panfish plastics and live bait in bays off the main lake, especially the Whitebreast arm.

Rock Creek Lake
Channel Catfish – Good: Catch catfish in the upper end of the lake with cut bait, livers or stink baits. White Crappie– Fair: Drift jigs or minnows offshore in 5-12 feet of water on the bottom half 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 has a good bass population; anglers are finding acceptable-size crappies in the lake. Black Crappie – Fair: Catch 8- to 9-inch black crappie with minnows under a bobber fished in the tree piles. Bluegill – Fair: Concentrate on deeper structure to find bluegill.  Channel Catfish – No Report: Anglers have the opportunity to catch a trophy-sized channel cat. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Greenfield has a good bass population with a high percentage of 14- to 16-inch fish.

Lake Anita
Black Crappie – Fair:  Find 8- to 10-inch black crappie in the deep tree piles and points and drop-offs. Bluegill – Fair: Find bluegills around tree piles in the lake and slow trolling the creek channels; keep your bait in 8 feet of water. Use small jigs tipped with a crawler. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Find largemouth bass in the tree piles and along vegetation edges.

Lake Manawa
Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers reports catching crappie with minnows under a bobber in the canals. Walleye – Fair: Cast a leech or crawler along the dredge cuts. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – No Report: Cast or troll crankbaits.

Meadow Lake
Anglers report finding panfish in the tree piles. Black Crappie – Fair: 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.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers report catching bass casting the shoreline and in the tree piles.

Orient Lake
Water clarity is fair. Black Crappie – No Report: Target the tree piles in the lake to find crappies this fall season. Bluegill – Good: Catch 8-inch bluegills around the tree piles in the lake. Shore anglers are catching fish with worms under a bobber. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or shrimp.

Prairie Rose Lake
Water clarity is good. Black Crappie – Slow.  Bluegill – Slow: Anglers are finding bluegills around the underwater reefs and cedar tree piles in the lake. Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast the shore line and the tree piles to catch 14- to 16-inch largemouth bass. Don’t overlook the underwater reefs and rock piles in the lake to find largemouth bass.

Viking Lake
Viking Lake is 7 feet below full pool. Access is compromised. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Channel Catfish – Fair: 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
Black Crappie – Good: Catch crappie up to 9.5-inches with jigs tipped with minnows fished near cedar tree brush piles. Bluegill – Good: Catch bluegill up to 8-inches with worms under a bobber fished near the fishing jetties. Largemouth Bass– Fair: Catch largemouth bass up to 21-inches with a jig fished near cedar tree brush piles.

Little River Watershed Lake
Courtesy docks are in at the main ramp and bait shop ramp. Black Crappie – Good: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished near main lake points to catch crappie up to 10-inches. Bluegill – Fair: Catch bluegill up to 8-inches with worms under a bobber fished near shallow coves. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or rock piles to catch largemouth bass of all sizes.

Three Mile Lake
Courtesy docks are installed at the main boat ramp. Bluegill – Good: Try jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or along the flooded timber to catch bluegill up to 8.5-inches. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use jigs fished near rock piles or along the flooded timber to catch largemouth Bass of all sizes. Walleye – Slow: Try jigs tipped with a minnow or worm harness fished in 20 feet of water.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake
The dock is in at main ramp. Black Crappie – Slow: Catch crappie up to 9.5-inches with jigs tipped with live bait fished along cedar tree brush piles or rocky shoreline areas. Bluegill – Good: Try jigs tipped with a worm fished fished in shallow coves to catch bluegill up to 8-inches. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Catch largemouth bass up to 21-inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or rock piles. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use minnows fished along the fishing jetties to catch yellow perch up to 10-inches.

Water temperature is in the low to mid-60’s in most Mount Ayr district lakes. For more information, call the Mount Ayr Fisheries office at 641-464-3108.

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