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NewsOutdoors

Saturday Morning Fishing Report: A Cold Weekend for Fishing

Weather may be a little cold over the weekend. Water temperatures will actually be warmer than the air. Saturday will be mostly cloudy, with a high near 29. North northwest wind 8 to 14 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph. Sunday will not be much better as cold Canadian air will keep the skies mostly cloudy and highs will only reach 30 degrees.

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Water levels are about 14 inches below the crest of the spillway. Most courtesy docks have been removed for the season, except for the floating courtesy dock for the ramp at the Marina on the northeast side of the lake. This dock stays in the entire winter season. Black Crappie – Fair: Fish are 8- to 11-inches. Try along Ice House Point and around the fish house in Town Bay. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try crawlers on the bottom, minnows or cut bait along shore. Walleye – Fair: Anglers are picking up walleye from shore and by boat. Throw twisters or crankbaits or fish crawlers or leeches under a bobber from shore. Anglers have picked up fish along Ice House Point, near the Ice House Point boat ramp and along the inlet bridge. Yellow Perch – Fair: Anglers are picking up perch on jigs, crawlers, and minnows under a bobber. Fishing from shore has been productive; try along Ice House Point shoreline and the inlet bridge.

Browns Lake
Water levels remain low; use caution when launching boats.

Brushy Creek Lake
Boat ramp courtesy docks have been removed for the season. Bluegill – Fair: Drift jigs tipped with crawlers in 5-15 feet of water anywhere along weed lines or near submerged trees. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try plastics and traditional bass lures along submerged woody structure and weed lines near shore.

North Twin Lake
Water levels are nearly 3 feet below the crest of the spillway. The boat ramp courtesy dock for the south ramp has been removed for the season.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
All walleye between 19 and 25-inches must be immediately released unharmed at Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day. Black Crappie – Fair. Channel Catfish – Fair: Storm Lake has a good population of 4-6 pound catfish. Try cut bait, liver or crawlers fished on the bottom along shore. Walleye – Fair: Try live bait, twisters or crankbaits along shore in mornings or evenings. White Bass –  Fair: Use crawlers, crankbaits, or twisters along shore. Yellow Bass – Fair: Fish are 5- to 11-inches long. Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber.

Surface water temperatures are dropping rapidly with the changing weather. Most boat ramp courtesy docks have been removed for the season. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.


Clear Lake
All courtesy docks have been removed for the season. The lake is 9.8 inches below crest. Water temperature is in the mid-40s. Water clarity is about 90 inches. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. The daily limit is 3 with no more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Walleye – Good: Evening fishing near vegetation, sand beach areas, and the Ventura Grade has been good. Use plastics and live bait. White Bass – Fair: Anglers are catching white bass while targeting walleye and yellow bass. Yellow Bass – Fair: Warmer afternoons are best to find schooling yellow bass. Use small jigs, live bait, or cut bait. Yellow Perch – Fair: Try live bait and small jigs near vegetation beds.

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 – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Try a piece of nightcrawler or small plastic jigs in the deeper water along the south shoreline.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Bluegill: Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Vertical jig in mid-lake areas with small jigs tipped with a piece of nightcrawler.

Winnebago River
Smallmouth Bass – 
Fair: Try a jig in the deeper holes and near woody habitat. Walleye – Fair: Use live bait in deeper holes. Best bite is after sunset.

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
Lake temperature is in the upper 40s. The water level is 10 inches below crest. Walleye fishing is picking up from shore early morning and later at night using live bait, jigs with live bait, or crankbaits. Try fishing under structure or over the top of vegetation. Black Crappie – Good: Try small jigs tipped with a minnow or tube jig and bobber. Bluegill – Fair: Use tube jigs, plastics, or other small jigs. Walleye – Fair: Try crawler harnesses, crankbaits, and minnows. Yellow Perch – Fair: Minnows work well; some sorting may be needed.

Lost Island Lake
Walleye – Good: Try spinners, crankbaits, and shallow shad raps. Evening bite is improving as the water cools.

Minnewashta Lake
Bluegill and crappie fishing has been good; some sorting may be needed. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
The walleye bite has picked up as water temperatures cool.  Walleye – Good: Use spinners, crankbaits, and long and shallow shad raps.

Spirit Lake
The lake is 13 inches below crest. The walleye season is open. The water temperature is in the upper 40s. Walleye fishing is picking up from shore early morning and later at night using live bait, jigs with live bait, or crankbaits. Muskellunge – Good: Try crankbaits, buck tails, and rubber baits. Walleye – Good: The 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. Try spinners, crankbaits, and long and shallow shad raps; look for weed lines to troll or jig off of. Yellow Perch – Good: Use small jigs tipped with a minnow. Sorting may be needed.

West Okoboji Lake
Water temperature is in the low 50s. The water level is 10 inches below crest. Black Crappie – Fair: Try small jigs tipped with a minnow. Bluegill – Good: Use tube jigs, plastics, or other small jigs. Muskellunge – Fair: Try crankbaits, buck tails, and rubber lures. Walleye – Fair: Crawler harnesses, crankbaits, and minnows work well. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use small jigs tipped with a minnow. Sorting may be needed.

Area lake temperatures are dropping consistently lately with many in the upper 40s. The walleye bite around the area is picking up. Almost all docks, hoists, and courtesy docks have  been removed for the season. Most vegetation is completely laid down; finding structure to fish around may be harder. Lake levels are lower, making launching a boat in some areas more difficult. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

NORTHEAST

Cedar River (above Nashua)
Water levels are very low, limiting some boat accesses. Try fishing in the deeper pools as the water cools. Channel Catfish – Good: Dead chubs fished on the river bottom work well for a hungry catfish. The bite is light, so let them work it a bit before setting the hook. Northern Pike – Fair: Find pike in pools. Use a steel leader with a shiny lure. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Smallie bite is variable. Try artificial lures or a lure tipped with a minnow around rocky outcroppings or ledges.  Walleye – Good: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or worm near the bottom of deeper holes at dawn and dusk.

Decorah District Streams
2022 catchable stream trout stocking concluded October 31. Staff would like to thank all our trout anglers and supporters for making this season one of the best. Streams are in good condition. Hunting seasons are in full swing. Be visible to hunters. Brook Trout – Fair: Brookies are colored up for spawning. Look for small areas of freshly cleaned gravel; these are trout nests or redds. Please avoid walking on these. Brown Trout – Fair: Fall is brown trout spawning season. Walk carefully around freshly cleaned off gravel; these are trout nests or redds. Good hatches of midges on sunny days. Rainbow Trout – Good: Community trout stockings continue. Check the DNR website to find out when and where. Try fishing along grassed edges, undercut banks, pools, and around boulders.

Lake Hendricks
Water clarity is about 1 to 2 feet. Best bite is in the evening as the water near shore warms. Black Crappie – Fair: Use a small minnow or lure in deeper water. Bluegill – Fair: Find gills along rocky shorelines. Use a small piece of worm fished under a bobber near shore. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try a jig tipped with a plastic worm or nightcrawler.

Lake Meyer
Water clarity is improving. Black Crappie – Slow: Find crappie suspended in 10-13 feet of water. Use a jig tipped with a minnow or spinnerbait. Bluegill – Slow: Find bluegills along rocky shorelines in the evening. Try a small jig tipped with a small piece of worm. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use a jig tipped with a plastic tail or nightcrawler.

Turkey River (above Clermont)
Water levels are low, but clear. Fish are moving to deeper water as the temperature drops. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Bass are taking a jig tipped with a variety of plastic tails. Run your lure along vegetated edges or woody debris. Walleye – Good: Find walleye in deeper pools or eddies. Use live bait.

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah) 
Water levels are low, but clear.  Find fish in deeper pools as temperatures drop. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Find smallies in eddies or near rock ledges. Use jigs tipped with a variety of plastics. Walleye – Good: Find walleye in deeper pools or near log jams or other woody debris.

Volga Lake
Water clarity is much improved. Try fishing at dusk and dawn. Black Crappie – Fair: Use minnows or small jigs in 5 to 8 feet of water. Bluegill – Slow: Find gills along rocky shoreline. Use a small jig tipped with a small piece of worm under a bobber. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use a dead chub, worm, or squished minnow fished on the bottom in 10 feet or less of water near stumps or other woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try crankbaits or jigs with plastic tails.

Rain forecast for Thursday. Temperatures falling from the 70s to 30s overnight with lows in the 20s. Rivers and streams are low with excellent clarity. Depending on rainfall amounts, streams may rise and turn off-color. Many streams remain low, limiting boat access. For current fishing information, please call the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.


Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)
Anglers report catching crappies. Black Crappie – Good: Try a minnow under a slip bobber around structure in 8-12 feet of water.

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers are catching some crappie on the river. Find brush piles or armored banks with a crappie minnow under a slip bobber. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Smallmouth bite has picked up. Cast crankbaits or jig and crawler rigs near rocky or rip-rap shorelines. Walleye – Good: Try a jig and crawler or cast crankbaits.

Heritage Pond
Heritage Pond was stocked with rainbow trout recently. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Fair: Cast and retrieve flashy spinnerbaits.

Maquoketa River (above Monticello)
Anglers report catching walleye and smallmouth bass on the Maquoketa River in Manchester and below the Lake Delhi Dam.

North Prairie Lake
North Prairie Lake was stocked with rainbow trout recently. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Fair: Cast and retrieve flashy spinnerbaits.

Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock)
Smallmouth Bass – Good: Smallmouth bite has picked up. Cast crankbaits or jig and crawler rigs near rocky or rip-rap shorelines. Walleye – Good: Try a jig and crawler or cast crankbaits.

Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)
Smallmouth Bass – Good: Smallmouth bite has picked up. Cast crankbaits or jig and crawler rigs near rocky or rip-rap shorelines. Walleye – Good: Try a jig and crawler or cast crankbaits.

Interior rivers remain low and are in excellent condition for angling opportunities. Walleye and smallmouth bass are biting well on plastics. The lakes in and around Black Hawk County have been slow. Trout streams are in excellent condition. Contact your local area bait shops for the most recent hot spots. For more information, contact the Manchester Hatchery at 563-927-3276.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 9
Water level is 8.1 feet at Lansing and is expected to rise to 8.4 feet this week. Water temperature is 49 degrees. Fish are biting to prepare for winter. Live minnows work well on a variety of species. Black Crappie – Fair: Catch bigger crappie on crappie minnows and hair jigs. Bluegill – Good: Bluegills are moving to less current. Use light tackle tipped with piece of worm along the weed edges in backwaters. Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast jigs or jerk baits in woody cover in the shallows of backwaters. Sauger – Good: Sauger are starting to bite as water temperatures cool. Try vertical jigging with a minnow in side channels and near Lock and Dam tailwaters. Walleye – Good: Walleye are moving into the Lock & Dam tailwaters. Bounce a jig and minnow off the bottom. Best bite is in the evenings. Yellow Perch – Good: Use a jig and minnow fished in the backwaters.

Mississippi River Pool 10
Water level is 613.5 feet at Lynxville and is expected to rise about a foot next week. Water temperature is 51 degrees at the Lynxville dam. Water clarity is good. The bite has picked up as fish are feeding to prepare for winter. Live minnows work well on a variety of species. Black Crappie – Good: Catch bigger crappie on crappie minnows and hair jigs. Bluegill – Good Bluegills are moving to less current. Use light tackle tipped with piece of worm along the weed edges in backwaters. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast jigs or jerk baits in woody cover in the shallows of backwaters. Sauger – Good: Sauger are starting to bite as water temperatures cool. Try vertical jigging with a minnow in side channels and near Lock and Dam tailwaters. Walleye – Good: Walleye are moving into the Lock & Dam tailwaters. Bounce a jig and minnow off the bottom. Best bite is in the evenings. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow fished in the backwaters.

Mississippi River Pool 11
Water level is 5.4 feet at Guttenberg and on the rise, reaching 6.7 feet next week. Water temperature is 50 degrees. Fish are feeding to prepare for winter. Live minnows work well on a variety of species. Black Crappie – Fair: Catch bigger crappie on crappie minnows and hair jigs. Bluegill – Good: Bluegills are moving to less current. Use light tackle tipped with piece of worm along the weed edges in backwaters. Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast jigs or crankbaits in woody cover in the shallows of backwaters. Sauger – Good: Sauger are starting to bite as water temperatures cool. Try vertical jigging with a minnow in side channels and near Lock and Dam tailwaters. Walleye –  Good: Walleye are moving into the Lock & Dam tailwaters. Bounce a jig and minnow off the bottom. Best bite is in the evenings. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow fished in the backwaters.

Upper Mississippi River levels are expected to rise this weekWater temperature is in 40s to low 50s. Panfish are moving into over-wintering backwater areas.  Boaters are advised to use caution to avoid backing off the end of ramps with the extreme low water levels. 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. Walleye/sauger combined daily limit 6/possession 12.


Mississippi River Pool 12
The water level is 5.7 feet at Lock and Dam 11 and 8.2 feet at the RR bridge. Use caution to avoid backing a boat off the ends of the boat ramps with the low river levels. Water temperature is around 51 degrees; the water is clear.  Black Crappie – Good: Use s small jig tipped with a minnow in areas around fallen brush. Bluegill – Slow: Try fishing the deeper sloughs around brush piles and rock lines. Rock lines in the tailwater has also been good. Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass will start to feed heavily on shad; try minnow imitation plastics and crankbaits. Lotus pads around 4 feet deep can be ideal. Bass will feed on shad right up to ice-up conditions. Look for wind-swept backwater areas with lots of sun. Northern Pike – Good: Pike are chasing shad, just like bass are doing. Use gaudy white spinnerbaits. Fall is a good time to target pike. Sauger – Good: The walleye and sauger bite has been up and down all year. Some anglers are targeting walleyes with cranks on the edges of the wing-dams or on rock piles. One-eye jigs also have been very popular. Nice-sized sauger are being reported in the Dubuque Tailwater. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Target smallmouth in moderate current areas with lots of rock. White Bass – Good: Look for feeding schools hitting the water surface. Use white jigs or small spinners. Yellow Perch – Fair: Lots of yellow perch are being caught in nearly all habitats; worm and bobber works best. Mostly small fish are being caught.

Mississippi River Pool 13
The water level is 5.5 feet at Lock and Dam 12 at Bellevue. Use caution to avoid backing a boat off the ends of the boat ramps with the low river levels. Water clarity is excellent. Water temperature is 50 degrees. Black Crappie – Fair: Use small jigs and minnows in brush piles in the larger sloughs. Some good reports with other anglers having difficulty and moving often. Some anglers are using slip bobbers to fish deeper sloughs. Bluegill – Good: Try a floating bobber and worm along rock lines. Fish will start to move to over-wintering sites when the water temperatures hit the lower 40s. Freshwater Drum – Fair: A simple worm rig fished on the bottom in moderate current areas will produce plenty of drum. Largemouth Bass – Excellent: Bass fishing will heat up as they start to feed heavily on shad. Bass can be caught right up to ice-up. When it gets cold, try fishing in the wind-swept warmer water that gets a lot of sunlight. Northern Pike – Good: Use gaudy white spinnerbaits in backwater areas. They will bite right up to ice-up as they are feeding heavily on shad. Rainbow Trout – Excellent: The Kids trout pond is stocked; it’s a nice safe spot to fish on a warmer fall or winter day. The problem duck weed will start dying back, so the pond will become easier to fish. Please limit yourself to two trout per kid if you plan to eat them. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Try fishing rock lines with moderate current or out to the tips of the wing-dams. Walleye – Good: Walleye and sauger angling has been up and down. Try cranks on the edges of wing-dams and rock piles. Many anglers are also using one-eye jigs in the tailwater. White Bass – Good: Use small white jigs or spinners. Look for the feeding gulls and you will often find white bass.

Mississippi River Pool 14
The water level  is 5.3 feet at Fulton, 9.8 feet at Camanche and 4.6 feet at LeClaire. Water clarity is excellent. Water temperature is in the low 50s. Use caution to avoid backing a boat off the ends of the boat ramps with the low river levels. Black Crappie – Good: Hit areas like Rock Creek backwaters near Camanche; try fishing in brush piles with deeper water near them. Bluegill – Good: Bobber and worms work best along old vegetation beds. Bluegill will be moving to deeper backwater areas.  Largemouth Bass – Excellent: Bass fishing will heat up as they start chasing gizzard shad in the backwater lakes. Northern Pike – Good: There are a lot of pike in Pool 14; target backwater areas with large gaudy spinnerbaits. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Try crankbaits and spinners fished in rock lines in moderate current areas. Walleye – Good: Use crankbaits on the wing-dams. Some anglers are starting to move to the Lock and Dam to target walleyes on jigs and one-eye jigging spoons. White Bass – Good: Find white bass feeding mainly in the tailwater areas. Use small white jigs or small spinners. Yellow Perch – Good: Lots of yellow perch are being caught; many are small.

Mississippi River Pool 15
The water level is 4.6 feet at Rock Island. Water clarity is excellent. Water temperature is 52 degrees. Use caution to avoid backing a boat off the ends of the boat ramps with the low river levels. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Try crankbaits and small spinners along rock lines with moderate current. Walleye – No Report: Expect anglers to be fishing the tailwaters, mostly using a jig and minnow. White Bass – Good: Look for feeding schools of white bass, especially in the tailwater areas. Some hybrid striped bass can be caught within the white bass schools.

Fishing conditions are excellent on the Mississippi River. Water levels are low and stable throughout the district. Water temperature is in the low 50s, but expecting a dramatic change. Water clarity is good. Use caution when backing off boat ramps with the low river levels. Use the minimum amount of ramp to float your boat to avoid backing off the ends of short rampsIf you have angling questions, please call the Bellevue Fisheries Management Station at 563-880-8781.

SOUTHEAST

Trout left after a recent stocking are the smarter ones that are better at hiding. Don’t expect to see them when they strike your bait. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Bluegill – Fair: Trout anglers are picking up nice bluegills. Rainbow Trout: Good – Trout have made themselves at home; look for them around the fishing pier and off the points and corners of the dam. Those are the places they like to hide in every year.

East Lake Park Pond
Still plenty of trout left after a recent stocking. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow trout: Good – It took them a little while to get use to there new home. With the more turbid water, use something with a little flash to get their attention.

Lake Belva Deer
Water temperature is in the mid-40s. Water clarity is about 6 feet.  Black Crappie – Slow: Crappies knew what they were doing last week, saved them the trip back out to deeper water last weekend. Bluegill – Fair: Anglers out slow trolling for crappies are also catching some bluegills as they head out to deeper water. 

Lake Darling
Water temperature is in the low to mid-40s. Water clarity is about 5 feet. The rain didn’t effect anything. The pumps have been pulled off the fish cleaning stations and the campground docks have been pulled. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers are catching crappies over the cedars in 10-12 feet of water. They weren’t fooled by last week’s warmer weather. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills are staying out in 6-8 feet of water. Try jigs tipped with a worm or slip bobber rigs in rock piles in 4-5 feet of water if the weather stays warm.

Lost Grove Lake
Water temperature is in the 40s.  Bluegill – Fair: Find bigger bluegills in 6 to 7 feet of water around the flooded brush. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Still picking up 10- to 12-inch bass in 4 to 5 feet of water around the rock piles and trees; most have moved to deeper water along the old creek channel.

Wilson Lake
Trout  don’t mind the dropping water temperatures. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow trout: Good – Look for them around the trees and cedars in 4 to 6 feet of water.

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


Coralville Reservoir
The docks have been removed. Black Crappie – Fair.  Channel Catfish: Fair. Walleye – Slow.

Diamond Lake
The lake is reported as 3 feet low. Restrooms and fish cleaning station are closed. The boat dock stays in year-round. Black Crappie – Good: Most fish are 8- to 9-inches. Bluegill – Fair.  Channel Catfish – Fair.

Lake Macbride
Water temperatures have been in the low 50s, but will drop fast.. Any size motor may be operated at no wake (5 mph) speed. The boat docks have been removed. There are permanent slips at main ramp and Opie ramp, and a plastic dock will remain at main ramp. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Slow.

Liberty Centre Pond
2000 rainbow trout were stocked recently. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good.

Pleasant Creek Lake
The main ramp docks will remain until ice-up; the other docks have been pulled. All water facilities are closed. Bluegill – Fair: Try fishing the shallow structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: There are lots of smaller fish around shallow structure. Walleye – Fair: A few walleye are being caught after dark.

Sand Lake
2000 rainbow trout were stocked recently. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good.

Union Grove Lake
The docks have been removed for the season. Bluegill – Fair. Largemouth Bass – Fair. Walleye – Slow.

Wapsipinicon River (Troy Mills to Oxford Junction)
The boat dock at Pinicon Ridge was removed due to low water, but the ramp will be open until snowfall. Black Crappie – Good: Use jigs or minnows over brush.  Bluegill – Fair: Try jigs or worms over deeper rock or wood. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use artificials around wood or deeper rock edges. Northern Pike – Fair. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Try crankbaits or plastics along rock edges. Walleye –Fair: Use plastics or live bait in deeper holes.

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


Lake Miami
Bluegill – Slow: Use small jigs around the submerged cedar tree piles and along the shoreline. Channel Catfish – Slow: Try dead chubs around the jetties and shoreline. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Use plastics around the jetties and cedar tree piles.

Lake Sugema
Black Crappie – Slow: Try small jigs or minnows fished around structure. Bluegill – Slow: Use small jigs around shorelines and on the edge of vegetated areas. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try plastics around the rock jetties and along the face of the dam.

Lake Wapello
Black Crappie – Slow: Look for crappies to be close to structure. Try small jigs and minnows. Bluegill – Slow: Use small jigs around the cedar tree piles and rock jetties. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Try rubber worms or other plastics fished around the cedar tree piles.

Ottumwa Park Pond South (Trout Pond)
Trout were stocked recently. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Try small spinners or jigs. Rainbow Trout – Fair: Try small in-line spinners or small jigs.

Rathbun Reservoir
The current lake level is 903.73 msl; recreation pool is 904 msl. Water temperature is in the mid-50s. Prairie Ridge boat ramp and campground is closed. Bridgeview and Island View campgrounds are closed. Lake Rathbun has zebra mussels, so make sure to properly drain, clean and dry equipment before transporting to another waterbody. Black Crappie – Slow: Try jig and minnow combos around docks and over submerged structure. Walleye – Slow: Troll nightcrawler rigs or crankbaits over underwater rock piles. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Slow: Try vertically jigging around rock piles or trolling crankbaits near the old river channel.

Red Haw Lake
Red Haw State Park has partially reopened. Visitors can access the beach and north boat ramp area, but are asked to avoid the campground. Bluegill – Fair: Try small jigs along the shoreline and around structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use plastics near structure and the rock jetties.

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

SOUTHWEST

Ada Hayden Heritage Park Lake
Trout were stocked recently. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Use small inline spinners, spoons, 1/8 ounce or smaller twister tail jigs, or live bait under a float.

Big Creek Lake
The Williams Drive Ramp dock will remain in until just before ice-up. Walleye – Fair: Try jigging or trolling live bait rigs or shad imitating plastics and crankbaits over humps, near points, and where shallow flats drop off to deeper water. A good starting area is out from the marina around to the beach. Target depths of 10 to 20 feet during the day and as shallow as 5 feet after sunset.

Des Moines River (Stratford to Saylorville Lake)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try slowly retrieving jigs tipped with twister tails, paddle tails, or live baits. Find areas of slow current with depths greater than 3 feet.

Lake Petocka
Trout were stocked recently. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Use small inline spinners, spoons, 1/8 ounce or smaller twister tail jigs, or live bait under a float.

Terra Lake
Trout were stocked recently. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Use small inline spinners, spoons, 1/8 ounce or smaller twister tail jigs, or live bait under a float.

Triumph Park West
Trout were stocked recently. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good:, Use small inline spinners, spoons, 1/8 ounce or smaller twister tail jigs or live bait under a float.

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


Big Lake (Including Gilbert’s Pond)
Trout were stocked recently. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Try similar size tackle used for bluegill and crappie; nightcrawlers and minnows are good live bait options.

Greenfield Lake
Black Crappie – No Report: The lake has a good population of  9- to 10-inch black crappie. Largemouth Bass – No Report: Greenfield has a high percentage of 14- to 16-inch largemouth.

Lake Anita
Black Crappie – No Report: Look for crappies drifting the roadbeds and around deep tree piles. Fish average 9-inches. Bluegill – No Report: Look for bluegills around deep structure and along creek channel edges. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Lake Anita has a good bass population. Try fishing the cedar tree piles.

Meadow Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Vertical jig or cast minnows under a bobber to the cedar tree piles in the lake to catch 10-inch black crappie. Bluegill – Slow: Look for 8-inch fish around cedar tree piles.

Prairie Rose Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Prairie Rose has a good population of 10-inch black crappie. Anglers are having success fishing brush piles with jigs under a bobber. Bluegill – No Report: Try fishing the deep cedar tree piles to catch 8.5-inch bluegill.. Largemouth Bass – Fair: There is a high percentage of 14- to 16-inch bass in Prairie Rose.

Viking Lake
Black Crappie – Slow: Minnows and slip bobbers work well around tree piles. Fish average 9-inches. Channel Catfish – No Report: Channel catfish are in shallow water, especially the upper ends of coves. Cast cut bait close to flooded terrestrial vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Fair.

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


Little River Watershed Lake
The dock is in at main ramp. Black Crappie – Slow: Catch crappie up to 10.5-inches with jigs fished along rocky shorelines. Bluegill – Fair: Try nightcrawlers under a bobber fished in shallow coves to catch bluegills up to 8.5-inches. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Catch all sizes of largemouth bass with finesse plastics fished near cedar tree brush piles or rocky shoreline areas.

Three Mile Lake
Courtesy docks are in at the main ramp. Bluegill – Slow: Catch bluegill up to 8.5-inches with  nightcrawlers under a bobber fished in shallow coves. Walleye – Fair: Try trolling crankbaits along the dam or fish the mounds to catch all sizes of walleye.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake
The dock is in at the main ramp. Black Crappie – Fair: Catch black crappie up to 11-inches with small jigs tipped with live bait fished near cedar tree brush piles or rock piles. Bluegill – Slow: Use small jigs tipped with a nightcrawler fished near brush piles or shallow coves to catch bluegill up to 8.5-inches.

Water temperature is in the low 50s at most Mount Ayr district lakes. For more information, call the Mount Ayr Fisheries office at 641-464-3108.

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