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Rick

Iowa Fishing Reports

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DES MOINES, IA - The weekly Iowa fishing reports from 1/14/13 are gathered from local bait shops, angler creel surveys, and county and state parks staff. They are compiled by lake and species then given a rating as to how good the fishing is on each lake by species. There are always current Iowa Fishing Reports in this forum. Enjoy.

For Current Iowa Fishing reports - Click Here

NORTHWEST IOWA FISHING REPORTS

Yellow Smoke Park Lake

Yellow Smoke still has around 7 inches of good ice. Water clarity is excellent. However, fishing has been very slow.

Crawford Creek Impoundment

Anglers are doing well for nice sized bluegill and crappie. Most anglers are using wax worms and fishing off the Christmas tree south of the boat ramp in about 13 feet of water.

Oldham Lake

Oldham has 7 to 10 inches of ice depending on location. Fishing has been very slow. Anglers are marking a lot of fish, but are having difficulty getting them to bite. Recent surveys show an abundance of 7.5 to 8.5-inch bluegills.

Badger Lake

Ice is between 8 to 10 inches depending on location. Anglers are reporting decent bluegills.

Brushy Creek Lake

There is around 10 inches of ice in the near shore areas and in the upper end of the lake. Avoid the main body of the lake as ice conditions can be quite variable. There is open water east of the beach. Most anglers are targeting the north end. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are biting, but most are on the small side. Crappie - Fair: Crappies are biting, but most are on the smaller side.

Bacon Creek Lake

Bacon Creek has about 7 inches of ice. Trout fishing has been good with waxies on a small jig head or a Kastmaster spoon. Trout will be stocked between 1:30 and 2 p.m. on Jan. 12.

Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)

Fishing for walleye seems to have picked up over the last couple weeks. However, many of are 12 to 14 inches. The mornings and evenings have been the best with anglers fishing in 4 to 5 feet of water.

North Twin Lake

North Twin has around 10 inches of ice. Anglers are doing okay for yellow bass. Target the south west portion of the lake.

Black Hawk Lake

Black Hawk Lake was renovated in November 2012 so there is no fishing to be had. Ice is around 8 inches thick. Waterfowl are keeping a small area open in the Town Bay.

Browns Lake

Browns Lake has about 8 inches of ice. Anglers have been catching some bluegill and crappie, but there hasn't been a lot of size to them.

Southwood Conservation Area Pond (east)

The east pond has around 9 inches of ice and the fishing has really turned on. Bluegill - Good: A lot of 8 to 9-inch bluegills are being caught using waxies and spikes on a jig head. Most fish are being picked up between 8 and 18 feet of water. Fish in the middle of the water column and raise or lower your bait to the fish when located on the fish finder. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Some largemouth are being picked up fishing closer to shore. Crappie - Good: A lot of 10 to 12-inch crappie are being caught in the same manner as the bluegill. The crappies have been preferring waxies and spikes over minnows.

Southwood Conservation Area Pond (west)

The west pond has around 8 inches of ice. Fishing in the west pond is slower than the east pond. Some bluegills and crappie are being caught, but a lot of sorting is required.

Arrowhead Lake

Arrowhead Lake has around 7 inches of ice. Anglers reported catching some 7.5 to 8.5-inch bluegill and a few large yellow bass.

Black Hawk Pits

Black Hawk Pit has around 7 inches of ice. Anglers have been fishing it pretty hard, but are having difficulty locating fish. Keep moving as the fish are likely stacked into a small area of the pit.

Moorland Pond

Moorland Pond was stocked with trout in mid-November. Anglers should experience good trout fishing through the ice there right now. The next stocking is scheduled for Jan. 18.

For more information or questions contact the Black Hawk Fish Management Office in Lake View at 712-657-2638.

Maynes Grove Lake

6 to 8 inches of ice.

Briggs Woods Lake

The ice thickness is around 6 to 8 inches.

Interstate Park Lake

8 inches of Ice.

Lower Pine Lake

Good sized bluegills are being caught in fair numbers. Bluegill - Good:

Upper Pine Lake

Upper Pine Lake is seeing minimum activity however a few smaller crappies have been caught.

Lake Smith

Ice depth is 10 inches plus. Bluegill - Good: Anglers having good success on bluegills, but some sorting required.

Lake Catherine

Ice thickness is 12 inches. Bluegill - Good: Large bluegills still biting late afternoon at Thorpe Park.

Clear Lake

Ice thickness on the little lake area is 14 to 18 inches. Main lake is around 10 to 15 inches. The bite is slow in midday. Best bite is in the morning or evening. Crappie - Good: Most of the crappies are ranging from 9 to 10 inches with a few being reported at 12-13 inches. Some anglers are reporting good success for crappies well past sunset. Most are being caught on minnows. Fish in deeper water; 15-20 feet, or near the drop-offs to those deeper areas. Yellow Perch - Fair: Anglers are catching modest numbers and an occasional 12-13 incher. A few of the bigger ones have been taken by the Lynne Lorenzen access or close to the deeper water northwest of McIntosh Woods State Park access. Walleye - Slow: Anglers are catching a few under 14 inches but the larger ones seem to be hard to come by. Yellow Bass - Good: Anglers seem to be doing better for numbers on the west end of the little lake and by the aerator mid-lake. Yellow bass are being caught around 8 to 15 feet of water.

Lake Cornelia

10-12 inches of ice. Walleye - Fair: Some reports of small walleyes being caught. Yellow Bass - Good: Lots of 6 to 8-inch yellow bass.

Little Wall Lake

Ice 8 to 10 inches. Fishing has been slow. Try fishing in the deeper pockets of the lake with wax worms.

Crystal Lake

Bluegills and an occasional Walleye or Largemouth Bass. Fish near the dredged area 8 to 12 feet of water. Bluegill - Good:

Bluebill Lake

11 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: Yellow Perch - Good: Yellow perch still biting good at in 12 to 15 feet of water.

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

Big Spirit Lake

Expect to find 10 to 13 inches of ice across most of the lake with ATVs currently being the best means of travel. Northern Pike - Fair: Most pike are being caught by accident on walleye tackle but setting tip-ups with chubs around structure has been producing. Bluegill - Slow: A few gills are being caught in Little Anglers Bay and off the grade. Try small jigs and being very quite as they are spooky. Yellow Perch - Slow: Look for perch off the ends of structure as well as in the main basin. Moving to find active fish may be necessary to catch any numbers. Wigglers, waxies, and minnow heads on either spoons or small jigs seem to be the go to lures. Walleye - Slow: Action seems to be restricted to dawn and dusk without much of a pattern. Try spoons and jigging raps tipped with a minnow head.

West Okoboji Lake

There is 6 to 10 inches of ice and ATVs are driving on much of the lake. Be aware: geese kept holes of open water in a few areas, avoid discolored ice and when in doubt turn back or test the ice with a spud. Northern Pike - Fair: Setting tip-ups in or near weeds is producing a few pike as well as setting them on drop-offs. Bluegill - Slow: Look for bluegills in the bays (Emerson and Millers seem to be the best) in or near standing weeds. Sight fishing has been the most popular method but a few choose to hole hop. Try small jigs tipped with wax worms or wigglers but don't overlook some of the finesse plastics. Yellow Perch - Fair: Look for perch in 20 feet plus of water along drop-offs or on mudflats. Try spoons tipped with live bait such as wigglers, wax worms, or minnow heads.

Lost Island Lake

A few yellow bass, walleye, and perch are being caught but fishing has slowed from earlier in the year.

For more information contact the Spirit Lake Hatchery at 712-336-1840.

NORTHEAST

Volga Lake

Volga Lake has 10 inches of clear ice. Lots of folks have been out and are scattered over the lake. Fish seem to be hanging around structure in deeper water. Bluegill - Fair: Crappie - Good: Anglers are finding fish near structure. Try small teardrops tipped with wax worms.

Lake Hendricks

The lake has 8 to 10 inches of ice. Anglers are fishing in the bay by the pier and off the point with great success. The bite has slowed some but should pick up by Saturday. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills have been found in 8 to 9 feet of water. Small jigs tipped with wax worms continue to work well. Crappie - Good: Anglers are catching crappies up to 10 inches in about 8 feet of water using small jigs tipped with wax worms.

Lake Meyer

The bite should pick up by the early part of the weekend. Fish can be found at variable depths. If you don't find fish in one spot, don't be afraid to move. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers have been fishing in a variety of depths on small jigs tipped with wax worms. Crappie - Fair:

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Yellow River

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Turkey River (below Clermont)

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Cedar River (above Nashua)

Reports of 4 to 9 inches of ice on some of the backwaters and slack water areas are coming in. Be sure to check ice depths as you go to the spot you want to fish. Current can make ice depths vary. The bite has picked up a bit this week. Bluegill - Fair: Fish are being found about 6 inches off the bottom. Crappie - Fair: Anglers are using a small jig tipped with a wax worm or spike.

Decorah District Streams

Morning midge and afternoon baetis hatches still occur occasionally even as colder weather approaches - #24 dry fly patterns have been successful for trout rising to small surface flies. Spin fishers using spinnerbaits and roostertails are reporting excellent catches of trout on area trout streams.

Don't forget to buy your new fishing license and trout stamp for the year. Thursday, January 10 is the last day Iowa Resident licenses are valid. Much of the snow on open ground has melted or will melt with rain forecast for Thursday/Friday. Ice conditions on area lakes remain good and are averaging 9 inches. Trout streams remain in excellent condition and are accessible in many instances. For more information or to let us know what's been biting, contact the Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.

Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)

Ice conditions are as 8 inches of good ice across the lake. Fish near structure towards deeper areas of the dam especially during early morning or late afternoon hours. Bluegill - Fair: Try a wax worm on a small ice jig near sunken brush piles for decent bluegill.

Big Woods Lake

Some crappie are being caught but be cautious of uneven ice on this lake. Bluegill - Fair: Wax worm tipped on an ice fishing jig has been fair for bluegill. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing a wax worm or small crappie minnow under a jig, fish heavier jigs in deeper water.

Brinker Lake

Anglers are keying in on habitat structures. Bluegill - Fair: Wax worm tipped on an ice fishing jig has been fair. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing a wax worm or small crappie minnow under a jig, fish heavier jigs in deeper water.

George Wyth Lake

Anglers are reporting 7-8 inches of ice. Fishing has been fair for crappie and bluegill. Bluegill - Fair: Try a wax worm on a small ice jig near sunken habitat. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing a wax worm or small crappie minnow under a jig, fish heavier jigs in deeper water.

North Prairie Lake

North Prairie Lake was stocked with 1,800 trout on Jan. 5. Rainbow Trout - Fair: Use small, flashy lures jigged under the ice, or ice fishing jigs tipped with a wax worm.

South Prairie Lake

Bluegill fishing has been fair near submerged structure. Decent sized bluegills are being caught. Bluegill - Fair: Try a wax worm on a small ice jig near sunken habitat.

Martens Lake

The northwest portion of the lake has been good for fishing, especially for the early morning and late afternoon bite. Bluegill are anywhere from 6.5-8.5 inches. Bluegill - Good: Wax worm tipped on an ice jig in 3 to 4 feet of water near weeds or structure has been good. Crappie - Fair: Wax worm or minnow tipped on an ice jig fished just under the ice has been fair.

Plainfield

Nice sized bluegills are being caught. Move often or locate structure for some good bluegill fishing. Bluegill - Good: Wax worm tipped on an ice fishing jig has been good.

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)

There have been reports of walleye and crappie being caught on the Cedar River in Black Hawk and Bremer counties. Use extreme caution when venturing out onto river ice as conditions may vary greatly and most often not recommended.

2012 fishing licenses expire Jan. 10. Be sure to check out the new fishing license options available for 2013. Black Hawk and Bremer County lakes are reporting anywhere from 6-8 inches of good ice, use caution as ice thickness can vary on lakes. For more information contact the northeast district office in Manchester at 563-927-3276 for any additional information.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 9

Lansing river stage is 7.9 feet and expected to remain stable over the next week. Backwater ice thickness is 6 to 10 inches. Bluegill - Good: Nice sized bluegills still being caught in Shore Slough and Village Creek boat ramp but bite is inconsistent. Crappie - Fair: Some nice sized crappies caught in Shore Slough but bite is inconsistent. Yellow Perch - Fair: A few smaller yellow perch being caught.

Mississippi River Pool 10

Lynxville river stage is up slightly to 12.7 feet and expected to remain at this level over the next week. Ice thickness in 6 or more inches in most areas. The boat ramp at Lynxville is blocked by ice. Depending on how much rain and warm weather we get, crossing Johnsons Slough in the Sny Magill area may become dangerous. Northern Pike - Fair: Pike still being caught on tip-ups in Norwegian and Bussey Lake. Bluegill - Good: Nice sized bluegills still being caught in Joyce Lake by Harpers Ferry, Norwegian and Ice Lake in the Sny Magill area, Greymore Lake by Prairie Du Chien and Bussey Lake, but bite is inconsistent. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Bass hitting tip-ups in Bussey Lake. Crappie - Fair: Some good catches of crappie reported in Sand bar slough in the Sny Magill area as well as Bussey Lake.

Mississippi River Pool 11

River stage at Lock and Dam 10 in Guttenberg is 4.2 feet and expected to remain stable over the next week. The DNR boat ramp in Guttenberg is still open but the city ramps are blocked with ice. Ice thickness is 5 or more inches in most backwaters. Bluegill - Good: Nice sized bluegills biting well in the Mud Lake marina and Zollicofers slough as well as the lower part of Sunfish lake on the Wisconsin side but bite can be inconsistent. Crappie - Fair: Some nice crappie reported in Zollicofers slough and Sunfish Lake but bite is inconsistent. Yellow Perch - Fair: A few smaller perch being caught in Mud Lake Marina and Sunfish Lake. Sauger - Fair: Vertical jigging with a minnow for sauger in the tail waters has been successful. Walleye - Slow: Walleye are biting on jig and minnow fished along drop-offs in the tail water areas.

Although solid ice still remains, warm weather and rains may weaken ice, especially along shorelines and any areas that may have current. Warm weather and rains will also remove the snow cover making ice conditions very slippery. Ice cleats are recommended until snow returns. Ice thickness is 6 or more inches in most areas but anglers should always use caution in any areas that may have current. Most boat ramps are blocked with ice limiting tail water fishing access. Water levels remain low on the Mississippi.

Mississippi River Pool 12

The Dubuque Lock and Dam water level is 4.9 feet and slightly rising. The tail water is completely socked in with ice. Boat ramps are unusable right now. For ice fishing, good ice should occur in most stagnant backwater areas but take care and never go on any ice if unsure of the thickness. White Bass - Fair: Small white bass are mixing in with the gills being caught at O’Leary’s Lake and various other backwaters. Bluegill - Good: Many folks report catching small fish mostly from the various harbors on Pool 12. Some activity is being reported also on Frentress and O’Leary’s lakes. Fish Trap was reported to be slow. Crappie - Fair: Some crappies are being caught with the gills but they too have tended to be small. In some place very small 3-inch type fish are pestering anglers. Sauger - No Report: As of Thursday it was not possible to launch a boat as all ramps were frozen in. Rain may change that situation.

Mississippi River Pool 13

Water Level at Bellevue dam is at 4.3 feet which is very low. The tail water ramp at Bellevue is open. Please take care and not back off the end of this ramp due to low water levels. Ice fishing is taking place at many locations on Pool 13. Most popular spots have been Michelson’s Landing and Sabula lakes. Bluegill - Good: A lot of bluegills are being reported from various places on Pool 13 but the size has been small. Most anglers using various tear drop type lures tipped with grubs. Crappie - Fair: Crappie fishing has been excellent all year in Pools 12 to 14. A few are being taken by ice anglers but most of the reported fish are small. Yellow Perch - Good: Some yellow perch are showing up in the tail waters and the size has been pretty decent. Sauger - Good: The sauger bite is good with many small fish being reported mainly by anglers using a three-way rig tipped with a minnow.

Mississippi River Pool 14

A water level at Fulton is low at 4.2 feet. Ice fishing is occurring at Rock Creek and Cattail Slough. The tail water ramps at Clinton have re-opened as ice has receded. Bluegill - Fair: Some bluegills are being reported out of Rock Creek and Cattail slough area. Many of the fish are small and you have to catch 50 to keep 12. Crappie - Slow: A few smaller crappies are also biting at Rock Creek by anglers using wax worms and teardrops. Sauger - Good: A few boats are being reported in the Pool 14 tail water and catching some small sauger on a jig and minnow and three-way rigs.

Mississippi River Pool 15

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

One of the best ice fishing seasons in recent history is taking shape on Pools 12-15 so get out and enjoy it. Please take care on the ice and never cross into places where you are uncertain of the ice depth. Low water conditions persist in the district. Expected warm up will play havoc with some spots with current flow. Ice will be very slick at times; some anglers are putting short stove pipe screws in the soles of their boots to help walk on the ice.

Mississippi River Pool 16

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 15 is 3.74 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions from the recent warm temperatures. A few anglers have been getting out to fish the tail waters and in Sylvan Slough for walleye and saugers.

Mississippi River Pool 17

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 16 is 2.84 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions from the recent warm temperatures. As of Thursday morning the boat ramps in Muscatine are open. Sauger - No Report: We have received no tail water fishing information for this pool this week but anglers have been able to launch boats in Muscatine to access the tail waters.

Mississippi River Pool 18

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 17 is 2.54 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions from the recent warm temperatures. Anglers have been able to launch boats at the Toolesboro ramp this past week. Sauger - Good: We have received reports that anglers have been catching some saugers at the dam this past week. Try vertical jigging with minnows or plastics.

Mississippi River Pool 19

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 18 is 0.77 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions from the recent warm temperatures. Anglers have been able to fish the tail waters for walleye and sauger but fishing is being reported as slow.

Mississippi River Pools 16-19: With recent warm temperatures there are unsafe ice conditions throughout the pools. There is also rain in the forecast that could further deteriorate ice conditions. Ice fishing is not advisable at this time. Some anglers have been getting out to fish the tail waters for walleyes and saugers. For more fishing information contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.

SOUTHEAST

Lake Geode

Thin ice, won’t hold anybody. Don't try.

Lake Belva Deer

Ice is 6 + inches thick. Expect to see water on the ice, especially with the forecasted rain and expected 40-50 degree air temps for the next couple of days. Bluegill - Good: Go early. The bite seems to kind of wrap up by about 10:30 a.m. Come in the middle of the day and the bite will be really slow. Crappie - Fair: Anglers are picking up a few while fishing for bluegills in the morning. There is a better bite for them around dark.

Pollmiller Park Lake

Lake has about 5 inches of ice. The warm weather has made the top of the ice kind of sloppy. A forecasted return to cold weather next week should fix that. Bluegill - Good: Work the brush piles out in deeper water.

Lake of the Hills

Ice about 5-6 inches thick. Use caution there are some thinner spots. Stay clear of the aeration system hole around the boat rental and beach area. Lake of the Hills is the only lake in West Lake Park where you can use live minnows. Rainbow Trout - Fair: Trout catches are sporadic but if you keep moving and find a spot where they are staying you still should be able to catch a limit. Bluegill - Good: Fish the deeper brush piles and you'll find the bluegills. Sorting is required for larger fish. Wax worms are the popular bait. Crappie - Good: Expect to find crappies mixed in with the bluegills.

Wilson Lake

Ice is about 5 inches thick. Rainbow Trout - Good: Anglers are picking up a fair number of trout. I would work some of the cedar tree piles in the deeper sections of the lake.

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

Hannen Lake

Ice thickness is about 9 inches. Remember, no minnows are allowed here. Bluegill - Fair: Look for submerged brush piles. Most fish are 6 to 8 inches. Best results have been in water less than 15 feet. Crappie - Good: Fish around submerged brush piles in 15 to 20 feet of water. Generally the fish are suspending 10 to 15 feet down. Most fish are about 9 inches.

Iowa Lake

There is about 8 inches of ice on the lake. Bluegill - Fair: Fish around submerged brush with a small jig/waxie. Crappie - Fair: Look for suspended fish around deeper brush or just out roaming the basin.

Kent Park Lake

The lake has about 8 inches of ice. Bluegill - Good: Fish early and late in the day around submerged brush piles.

Lake Macbride

The majority of the lake is covered with 8 inches of ice. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills can be caught on most structure but size is usually 4 to 6 inches. Crappie - Slow: A few anglers are finding the right brush piles and catching some 10 to 12 inches crappies. Depths of 10 to 15 feet seem to be producing best.

Pleasant Creek Lake

Most of the lake has 8 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: Fish along the dam in 15 to 20 feet of water with small jigs/waxies. Yellow Perch - Slow: A few perch are also being picked up by bluegill fishermen along the dam. Walleye - Fair: Most walleyes are being caught along the dam in 15 to 20 feet of water. They can be caught on bluegill tackle but small spoons are working as well.

Diamond Lake

The lake has about 9 inches of ice. Remember, no minnows are allowed here. Bluegill - Good: Fish brush piles or the creek channel with small jigs/waxies. Most fish are 7 to 8 inches. Crappie - Fair: Fish around deeper brush piles with small jigs/waxies. Most fish are about 9 inches.

Union Grove Lake

Ice thickness is about 9 inches. The aeration system is turned on so caution should be used towards the south end of the lake as there will be open water. Bluegill - Fair: Fish along the bottom next to brush piles. Crappie - Fair: Look for suspended fish near deeper brush or roaming the basin.

Coralville Reservoir

Ice depths are variable but some areas have up to 8 inches. Crappie - Slow: Most fish have been small at this point. Look for fish around submerged trees, pallet structures, or suspended along steeper rock bluffs.

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

Red Haw Lake

Ice conditions are variable across the lake so use caution if venturing out. The area of open water by the beach and dam has gotten larger with the warmer temperatures and the wind. There is about 7 inches of ice in the campground bay. Use small jigs to catch bluegill.

Albia (lower)

Ice thickness is about 4-5 inches. The area of open water near the dam has gotten larger with the warm temperatures and the wind. Use small jigs tipped with a wax worm for bluegills.

Rathbun Reservoir

The lake level is 902.95 feet with 904 feet being normal. There is still some open water so use caution. Most of the fishing so far has been in the Honey Creek area and other bays and coves. Crappies have been biting on small jigs but sorting is required for larger fish. Don't forget Lake Rathbun contains zebra mussels so make sure to clean, drain, and dry equipment before transporting to another water body.

For questions regarding fishing in south central Iowa, call the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406.

SOUTHWEST

Beaver Lake

Bluegill - Good: Anglers are finding actively feeding bluegills and crappies near the wood structure.

Rock Creek Lake

Crappie - Fair: Crappie are being picked up in 10 to 12 feet of water. The better sized fish are running 10 to 12 inches.

Roberts Creek Lake

Crappie - Good: Ice anglers after crappie are doing well on the lower portion of the lake.

Big Creek Lake

Bluegill - Good: Anglers are catching good sized bluegills over brush piles. Crappie - Slow: Some anglers are having fair nights on crappie fishing 30 feet of water using minnows.

Hickory Grove Lake

Bluegill - Good: Hickory Grove has about 8 inches of ice. Ice anglers fishing over pallet and brush piles are doing well on good size bluegills from 7 to 9 inches with an occasional crappie mixed in.

Lake Ahquabi

Bluegill - Fair: Some good size bluegills are being caught on the brush piles. Good ice fishing brush piles and rock piles can be found out from the steep north shore.

Lake Petoka

Rainbow Trout - Good: Rainbow trout that were stocked can now be caught through the ice using wax worms on jigs and jigging spoons or small live minnows.

Banner Lake (south)

Rainbow Trout - Good: Rainbow trout can be caught through the ice using wax worms on jigs and jigging spoons or small live minnows.

Good ice fishing conditions continue in central Iowa. Ponds and lakes in central Iowa are averaging 10 inches of ice. For questions on central Iowa lakes and rivers contact Ben Dodd or Andy Otting at 515-432-2823.

Greenfield Lake

Greenfield has 8 inches of ice. The lake is 6 feet low. Use extreme caution when venturing out as geese are keeping a portion on the west side open. Bluegill - Good: Small jigs and wax worms are catching 7 to 8 inch fish. Crappie - Fair: Sorting is necessary but anglers are catching crappies up to 10 inches.

Meadow Lake

Meadow Lake has 8 inches of ice. Bluegill - Slow: The bluegill bite was slow this week at Meadow. Fish average 8 inches.

Nodaway Lake

Nodaway is 7 feet low. The lake has 8 inches of ice and a good bluegill and crappie population. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are being caught using wax worms in 8 to 10 feet of water. Fish range from 7 to 8 inches. Crappie - Fair: The best crappie bite is in the evening just after dark. Fish minnows in 10 to 13 feet of water. Sorting is necessary for the 9 to 10-inch fish.

Littlefield Lake

Littlefield has 8 inches of ice. Bluegill - Good: The bluegill bite was good last week using wax worms. North of the beach in 10 feet of water was a good location for 7 to 8-inch fish. Crappie - Slow: A few crappies have been caught with wax worms. All sizes are being caught up to 10 inches.

Lake Anita

Anita has 8 inches of ice. Geese are keeping a large area of open water near the dam. Anita has 9-inch bluegill and 10-inch crappie. Bluegill - Slow: Bluegills bite has been slow. The best success has been in the campground arm of the lake. Crappie - Slow: A few crappies have been caught in the late afternoon on minnows.

Willow Lake

Willow has 9 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are catching 8-inch bluegills on wax worms.

Big Lake (Including Gilbert's Pond)

Rainbow trout will be stocked on Jan. 18. A youth fishing event is scheduled for Jan. 19, pending ice conditions. Rainbow Trout - Slow: Trout can be caught on a variety of ice fishing jigs tipped with wax worms or minnows.

Lake Manawa

Manawa has 9 inches of ice. Channel Catfish - Fair: Catfish can be caught on wax worms north of the beach. Crappie - Fair: Crappies up to 12 inches are being caught on minnows. The best locations have been Tin Can dyke and north of the beach.

Hacklebarney East

Hacklebarney has 8 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills can be caught using wax worms. Fish average 8 inches. Crappie - Fair: Crappies are being caught in 18 feet of water using minnows.

Farm Creek Lake

Farm Creek has 8 inches of ice. The lake supports a good panfish population. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegill are being caught on wax worms in 15 feet of water. Fish average 8 inches. Crappie - Slow: Fish late afternoon with minnows to catch 8to 10-inch crappies.

Cold Springs District Farm Ponds

Farm ponds in the southwest district have 7 to 9 inches of ice. Remember to always get permission to fish private ponds. Bluegill - Good: The deepest part of the pond is usually the best location to start fishing for bluegills. Crappie - Fair: Larger ponds that support crappie populations have been good. Late afternoon has been the best time to target crappies.

Ice conditions are good in the southwest district. Lakes have 7 to 9 inches of ice. For more information call the district office at Cold Springs at 712-769-2587

Lake Icaria

Most of the lake is ice covered. Anglers are using the area just to the north of the beach and the old roadway under the main arm. Ice condition will deteriorate over Friday and Saturday. It should get better after Sunday. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are finding some good bluegills just north of the beach in the old creek channel. Crappie - Good: The old roadway on the main arm and creek channel in the lower portion of the lake is producing some crappies. The fish are suspended at various times of the day.

Little River Watershed Lake

The water level is down about 12 feet to allow completion of a shoreline stabilization project. The fish have been restocked and are growing fast.

Fogle Lake S.W.A.

The water level is down about 6 feet to allow boat ramp repairs and crowd the fish to increase predation. The repairs are complete. The water level will be allowed to rise as run-off occurs. Anglers are fishing the flooded trees and sub-merged brush piles for panfish. Bluegill - Fair: A few medium sized bluegills are coming from the creek channel and flooded trees.

Lake of Three Fires

Most of the lake has 4 inches of ice but is getting weaker. Check often. Bluegill - Good: Several bluegills are being caught from the tree pile 150 yards north of the center of the dam. Crappie - Good: Some nice crappies are biting from the cedar tree pile just north of the center of the dam. Wax worms are working but minnows are best.

Sands Timber Lake (Blockton Reservoir)

The lake has been drained to allow the construction of a wetland and shoreline stabilization to be completed.

Green Valley Lake

Most of the lake is ice covered. Some areas will be too thin or too weak to support people. Check the ice thickness frequently. Bluegill - Fair: Some nice sized bluegills can be caught from the deeper cedar tree piles located just south for the main ramp and immediately north of the center of the dam.

Summitt Lake

The spillway replacement project is complete but run-off has not refilled the lake. Restocking and boating will occur when water levels rise.

Three Mile Lake

The water level is down about 4 feet. The lake is mostly frozen. It is possible a few areas will have ice too thin or too weak to support people. Check ice thickness frequently. Crappie - Fair: A few nice sized crappies are coming from the creek channel edges in the upper portion of the lake and from around the deeper tree piles in the mid and lower portion of the lake.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake

The water level is down about 3.5 feet. Ice has formed over the most of the lake. Some areas will still be too thin or too weak. Check thickness frequently. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are finding some bluegills near the flooded trees near the creek channel. Start around 10 to 16 feet down. Crappie - Good: Anglers are finding some nice crappies from around the creek channel of the west shore and the deeper edges of the fish mounds. Start around 12 to 16 feet down.

Most lakes are covered by 4 inches of ice. The warm temps and rain have deteriorated the ice quality. By Friday and Saturday many areas will be too weak to hold anglers. The forecast calls for very cold conditions next week. Activity is strong and anglers are finding a lot of fish. Check thickness often and be very careful.

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DES MOINES, IA - The weekly Iowa fishing reports from 1/18/13 are gathered from local bait shops, angler creel surveys, and county and state parks staff. They are compiled by lake and species then given a rating as to how good the fishing is on each lake by species. There are always current Iowa Fishing Reports in this forum. Enjoy.

For Current Iowa Fishing reports - Click Here

NORTHWEST IOWA FISHING REPORTS

Yellow Smoke Park Lake

Yellow Smoke has around 8-9 inches of good ice. Water clarity is excellent. Fishing has been pretty slow, but the few bluegills that anglers are catching are big.

Crawford Creek Impoundment

Fishing has been good. Ice conditions are good. Channel Catfish - Fair: Some decent sized catfish are being harvested while fishing for other species. Bluegill - Good: Anglers have been doing very well for bluegill. The mornings until noon have been the best. Most anglers are fishing just southeast of the center of the lake and some are fishing over the Christmas trees. Anglers are using wax worms and fishing a few feet off the bottom, but fish finders are also helping to pick up suspended fish when they move through. Bluegills are very nice sized. Crappie - Fair: Some nice crappie are being picked up while bluegill fishing. Yellow Perch - Fair: Some nice perch are also being picked up while fishing.

Oldham Lake

Oldham has 7 to 10 inches of ice depending on location. Fishing has been very slow. Anglers are marking a lot of fish but are having difficulty getting them to bite. Recent surveys show an abundance of 7.5 to 8.5-inch bluegills.

Brushy Creek Lake

There is around 10 inches of ice in the near shore areas and in the upper end of the lake. Avoid the main body of the lake as ice conditions can be quite variable. There is open water east of the beach. Most anglers are targeting the north end. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are biting, but most are on the smaller side. Crappie - Good: Crappies are biting, but most are on the smaller side.

Bacon Creek Lake

Bacon Creek has around 8 inches of ice. 1,500 trout were stocked on Jan. 12 and fishing has been excellent. Try fishing about 2 to 3 feet below the ice with bright/shiny lures. Later in the season switch to baits, like Berkeley Power Bait.

Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)

Fishing for walleye has been sporadic. Anglers are spread out in search of fish. A few white bass are being picked up while targeting walleye. Ice is around 14 inches, but there was some open water near the north shore earlier in the week, likely from a pressure seam. Water clarity is still poor.

Southwood Conservation Area Pond (east)

The east pond has around 9 inches of ice and the fishing has really turned on. Bluegill - Good: A lot of bluegill are being caught in the 8 to 9-inch size range. Waxies and spikes on a jig head fished in 8 and 18 feet of water is working best. Fish in the middle of the water column and raise or lower your bait to the fish when located on the fish finder. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Some largemouth are being picked up fishing closer to shore. Crappie - Good: A lot of 10 to 12-inch crappies are being caught. Target the crappie in the same manner as the bluegill. The crappies have been preferring waxies and spikes over minnows.

Southwood Conservation Area Pond (west)

The west pond has around 8 inches of ice. Fishing in the west pond is slower than the east. Some bluegills and crappie are being caught, but a lot of sorting is required.

Arrowhead Lake

Arrowhead Lake has around 7 inches of ice. Anglers have reported catching some 7.5 to 8.5-inch bluegills and a few large yellow bass.

Black Hawk Pits

Black Hawk Pit has around 7 inches of ice. Anglers have been fishing it pretty hard, but are having difficulty locating fish. Keep moving around as the fish are likely stacked into a small area of the pit.

Moorland Pond

Moorland Pond will be stocked with trout on Jan. 18 around 1:30 p.m. Fishing for trout should be excellent as soon as the trout are stocked.

For more information or questions contact the Black Hawk Fish Management Office in Lake View at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake

Anglers are saying that action is slow; a few bluegills.

Maynes Grove Lake

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Briggs Woods Lake

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Lower Pine Lake

Bluegills in good numbers, average size are being caught deep. Fish right on the bottom.

Upper Pine Lake

Not much activity on Upper Pine. There is 7 inches of good ice.

Lake Smith

Ice thickness is 13 inches plus. Bluegill fishing has been fair with the best bite later in the day.

Lake Catherine

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Clear Lake

Ice depth is 11-14 inches. Some anglers are doing okay on the main lake. Warning: Be cautious around the pressure ridges that have developed near shore on the main lake. Crappie - Fair: Crappies are mostly being found in 15-20 feet of water and are being caught on minnows or wax worms. Yellow Perch - Fair: Perch are being caught in the little lake. A few of them are over 10 inches. Try a small spoon and a minnow or minnow head. Walleye - Slow: Yellow Bass - Fair: Yellow bass are scattered. Move till you find numbers of them. They seem willing to bite whole minnows, cutbait, or wax worms.

Lake Cornelia

Lots of 6 to 8-inch yellow bass along with some small walleyes.

Crystal Lake

Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are still biting well. Some sorting will be needed. Anglers are finding an occasional walleye or largemouth bass. Fish near the dredged area 8 to 12 feet of water.

Bluebill Lake

Yellow Perch - Good: Perch have been caught in 12-15 feet of water.

Interstate Park Lake

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Little Wall Lake

Ice thickness is 8 to 10 inches. Fishing has been slow. Try fishing in the deeper pockets of the lake with wax worms.

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

Big Spirit Lake

Expect to find 12-14 inches of ice across most of the lake with travel by ATV the preferred means. Be aware a few trucks have put tires through the ice the biggest area of concern is between Marble Beach and Templar Point. Northern Pike - Fair: Most pike are being caught by accident on walleye tackle but setting tip-ups with chubs around structure has been producing some results. Bluegill - Slow: A few gills are being caught in Little Anglers Bay and off the grade. Try small jigs and be very quite as they are spooky. Yellow Perch - Slow: Look for perch off the ends of structure as well as in the main basin. Moving around looking for active fish may be necessary to catch any numbers. Wigglers, waxies, and minnow heads on either spoons or small jigs seem to be the go to lures. Walleye - Slow: Action seems to be restricted to dawn and dusk without much of a pattern. Try spoons and jigging raps tipped with a minnow head.

West Okoboji Lake

There is currently 8-12 inches of ice. ATVs are driving on much of the lake. Be aware there were goose holes in a few areas so avoid discolored ice and when in doubt turn back or test the ice with a spud. Northern Pike - Fair: Setting tip-ups in or near weeds is producing a few pike as well as setting them on drop offs. Bluegill - Slow: Look for bluegills in the bays (Emerson and Millers seem to be the best) in or near standing weeds. Sight fishing has been the most popular method but a few choose to hole hop. Try small jigs tipped with wax worms or wigglers but don't overlook some of the finesse plastics. Yellow Perch - Fair: Look for perch in 20 plus feet of water along drop-offs or on mudflats. Try spoons tipped with live bait such as wigglers, wax worms, or minnow heads.

For more information contact the Spirit Lake Hatchery at 712-336-1840.

NORTHEAST

Volga Lake

Volga Lake has 10 inches of clear ice. Lots of folks have been out. Fish seem to be hanging around structure in deeper water. Bluegill - Good: Crappie - Good: Anglers are finding fish near structure. Try small teardrop shaped jigs tipped with wax worms.

Lake Hendricks

The lake has 8 to 10 inches of ice. Anglers are fishing in the bay by the pier and off the point with great success. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills have been found in 8 to 9 feet of water. Small jigs tipped with wax worms continue to work well. Crappie - Good: Anglers are catching crappies up to 10 inches in about 8 feet of water using small jigs tipped with wax worms.

Lake Meyer

The bite has picked up. The best times to fish are early in the morning or toward evening. Fish are hanging toward the bottom this week. If you don't find fish in one spot, move. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are finding fish near the bottom using small jigs tipped with wax worms. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Bass have been caught while fishing for crappie. Crappie - Good: Crappie have been hitting small jigs tipped with wax worms fished off the bottom.

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Yellow River

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Turkey River (below Clermont)

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Cedar River (above Nashua)

Ice depths vary so be sure to check often heading out to fish. Bluegill - Fair: Fish are about 6 inches off the bottom. Crappie - Fair: Anglers are using a small jig tipped with a wax worm or spike.

Decorah District Streams

Fly fishing has been superb in January. Streamer patterns such as wooly buggers and light spruces have been successful. Pheasant tail, prince and GRHE nymphs have produced fish, as well as a variety of wet flies including red badgers and partridge and oranges. Try your smallest dry flies for the occasional rising trout. Spin fishers using spinnerbaits and roostertails are reporting excellent catches of trout on area trout streams.

Ice conditions on area lakes are in excellent condition and are averaging 9 inches. Trout streams are in excellent condition and accessible in many instances. For more information or to let us know what's been biting, contact the Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.

Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)

Ice conditions are reported as 8 inches of good ice across the lake. Locate efforts near structure towards deeper areas of the dam especially during early morning or late afternoon hours. Bluegill - Fair: Try a wax worm on a small ice jig near sunken brush piles for decent bluegill.

Big Woods Lake

Some crappies are being caught. Be cautious of uneven ice on this lake. Bluegill - Fair: Wax worm tipped on an ice fishing jig has been fair. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing a wax worm or small crappie minnow under a jig, fish heavier jigs in deeper water.

Brinker Lake

Anglers have been concentrating efforts near habitat structures. Bluegill - Fair: Wax worm tipped on an ice fishing jig has been fair. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing a wax worm or small crappie minnow under a jig, fish heavier jigs in deeper water.

George Wyth Lake

Anglers are reporting 7-8 inches of ice. Fishing has been fair for crappie and bluegill. Bluegill - Fair: Try a wax worm on a small ice jig near sunken habitat. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing a wax worm or small crappie minnow under a jig, fish heavier jigs in deeper water.

North Prairie Lake

North Prairie Lake was stocked with 1,800 trout on Jan. 5. Rainbow Trout - Fair: Use small, flashy lures jigged under the ice, or ice fishing jigs tipped with a wax worm for some good action.

South Prairie Lake

Bluegill fishing has been fair, concentrate efforts near submerged structure. Decent bluegill of size are being reported. Bluegill - Fair: Try a wax worm on a small ice jig near sunken habitat.

Martens Lake

The northwest portion of the lake has been good for fishing, especially for the early morning and late afternoon bite. Bluegill are anywhere from 6.5-8.5 inches. Bluegill - Good: Wax worm tipped on an ice jig in 3-4 feet of water near weeds or structure has been good. Crappie - Fair: Wax worm or minnow tipped on an ice jig fished just under the ice has been fair for crappies.

Plainfield

Nice size bluegill are being caught. Move often or locate structure for some good bluegill fishing. Bluegill - Good: Wax worm tipped on an ice fishing jig has been good for bluegill.

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)

There have been reports of walleye and crappie being caught on the Cedar River in Black Hawk County. Use extreme caution when venturing out onto river ice as conditions may vary greatly and highly not recommended. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing a small jig or spoon tipped with a minnow under the ice.

A friendly reminder, 2012 fishing licenses have expired, be sure to check out the new fishing license options that are available for 2013. Black Hawk and Bremer County lakes are reporting anywhere from 8-10 inches of good ice, use caution as ice thickness can vary on lakes. For more information contact the district office in Manchester at 563-927-3276 for additional information.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 9

Lansing river stage is 7.9 feet and expected to remain stable over the next week. Backwater ice thickness is 6-10 inches. Bluegill - Good: Nice sized bluegills still being caught in Shore Slough and Village Creek boat ramp but bite is inconsistent. Crappie - Fair: Some nice sized crappies caught in Shore Slough but bite is inconsistent. Yellow Perch - Fair: A few smaller yellow perch being caught.

Mississippi River Pool 10

Lynxville river stage is up slightly to 12.7 feet and expected to remain at this level over the next week. Ice thickness is 6 or more inches in most areas. The boat ramp at Lynxville is blocked by ice. Depending on how much warm weather we get, crossing Johnsons slough in the Sny Magill area may become dangerous. Northern Pike - Fair: Pike still being caught on tip-ups in Norwegian and Bussey Lake. Bluegill - Good: Nice sized bluegills still being caught in Joyce Lake by Harpers Ferry, Norwegian and Ice Lake in the Sny Magill area, Greymore Lake by Prairie Du Chien and Bussey Lake, but bite is inconsistent. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Bass hitting tip ups in Bussey Lake. Crappie - Fair: Some good catches of crappie reported in Sand Bar Slough in the Sny Magill area as well as Bussey Lake.

Mississippi River Pool 11

River stage at Lock and Dam 10 in Guttenberg is 4.2 feet and expected to remain stable over the next week. The DNR boat ramp in Guttenberg is still open and the north ramp at the south city ramp has opened up. Ice thickness is 8 or more inches in most backwaters. Bluegill - Good: Nice sized bluegills biting well in the Mud Lake marina and Zollicofers Slough as well as the lower part of Sunfish Lake on the Wisconsin side but bite can be inconsistent. Crappie - Fair: Some nice crappie reported in Zollicofers Slough and Sunfish Lake but bite is inconsistent. Yellow Perch - Fair: A few smaller perch being caught in Mud Lake Marina and Sunfish Lake. Sauger - Fair: Vertical jigging with a minnow for sauger in the tail waters has been successful. Walleye - Slow: Walleye are biting on jig and minnow fished along drop-offs in the tail water areas.

Most backwater lakes have a good 8-10 inches of solid ice. Warm weather may weaken ice, especially along shorelines and any areas that may have current. Warm weather will also remove snow cover making ice conditions very slippery. Ice cleats are recommended. Anglers should always use caution in any areas that may have current. Colder weather may ice up boat ramps early next week limiting tail water fishing. Water levels remain low.

Mississippi River Pool 12

At the Dubuque Lock and Dam the water level is 4.8 feet and steady. For ice fishing, the best ice should occur in most stagnant backwater areas but please take care and never go on any ice if unsure of the thickness. Always drill test holes and never assume the ice is safe. White Bass - Fair: Small white bass are mixing in with the gills being caught at O’Leary’s Lake and various other backwaters. Bluegill - Good: Very few reports this week as warm spell discouraged many ice anglers. Anglers who fished Pool 12 are reporting small fish mostly from the various harbors on Pool 12. Some activity is also on Frentress and O’Leary’s lakes. Fish Trap and Keogh was reported as slow. Crappie - Fair: Some crappies are also being caught with the gills but they too have tended to be small. In some place very small fish are pestering anglers.

Mississippi River Pool 13

Water Level at Bellevue dam is at 4.5 feet and dropping. The tail water ramp at Bellevue is open. Take care to not back off the end of this ramp due to low water levels. Ice fishing is taking place at many locations on Pool 13 but take caution as last week’s warm up changed ice quality. Never assume the ice is safe, and drill test holes. Bluegill - Good: A lot of bluegills are being reported from various places on Pool 13 but the size has been small. Most anglers using various tear drop type lures tipped with grubs. Crappie - Fair: Crappie fishing has been excellent all year in Pools 12 to 14. A few are being taken by ice anglers but most of the reported fish are small. Yellow Perch - Good: Some yellow perch are showing up in the tail waters and the size has been pretty decent. Sauger - Good: The sauger bite is good with many small fish being reported mainly by anglers using a three-way rig tipped with a minnow. Anglers should understand that when fishing in water depth below 35 feet, the deep water hooking mortality of walleye and sauger increases greatly.

Mississippi River Pool 14

Water levels at Fulton are low at 4.4 feet. Last week’s warm up played havoc with ice anglers on Pool 14. Many spots became unfishable due to poor ice conditions. Better conditions are creeping back but please exercise extreme caution. Bluegill - No Report: Before the recent warm spell bluegills were being reported out of Rock Creek and Cattail Slough. Many of the fish are small and you have to catch 50 to keep 12. Take caution as ice has deteriorated greatly. Sauger - Good: A few boats are being reported in the Pool 14 tail water and catching some small sauger on a jig and minnow and three-way rigs.

Mississippi River Pool 15

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Ice conditions radically changed thanks to last week’s warming. Please take care on the ice and never cross into places where you are uncertain of the ice depth. Take materials needed to get out of the water if you do fall through. Ice will be very slick at times; some anglers are putting short stove pipe screws in the soles of their boots to help walk on the ice.

Mississippi River Pool 16

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 15 is 4.00 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions from the recent warm temperatures. A few anglers have been getting out to fish the tail waters and in Sylvan Slough for walleye and saugers. Sauger - Slow: There have been some reports of anglers fishing the tail waters for saugers but fishing has been slow.

Mississippi River Pool 17

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 16 is 3.15 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions from last week’s warm temperatures and rain. Big Timber appears to have some thin ice conditions where there was some open water areas that have recently begun to freeze over again. Ice fishing is not advisable at this time. As of Wednesday morning the boat ramps in Muscatine are open. Sauger - Fair: Anglers have been catching a few saugers in the tail waters at Muscatine vertical jigging with minnows. There is some free floating ice at the upper ramp at Muscatine that may refreeze and cause some difficulty loading and unloading boats.

Mississippi River Pool 18

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 17 is 2.84 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions from last week's warm temperatures and rain. Sauger - Good: We have received reports that anglers have been catching some saugers at the dam this past week. Try vertical jigging with minnows or plastics.

Mississippi River Pool 19

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 18 is 1.04 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions from last week's warm temperatures and rain. Sauger - Slow: Fishing has been slow but a few saugers are being caught below the dam. Try vertical jigging with minnows.

Mississippi River Pools 16-19: There is unsafe ice conditions throughout the pools due to last week's warm temperatures and rain. Ice fishing is not advisable at this time. Some anglers have been getting out to fish the tail waters for walleyes and saugers. For more fishing information contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.

SOUTHEAST

Hannen Lake

Remember, no minnows are allowed here. Bluegill - Fair: Look for submerged brush piles. Most fish are 6-8 inches. Best results have been in water less than 15 feet. Crappie - Good: Fish around submerged brush piles in 15-20 feet of water. Generally the fish are suspending 10-15 feet down. Most fish are about 9 inches.

Iowa Lake

Bluegill - Fair: Fish around submerged brush with a small jig/waxie. Crappie - Fair: Look for suspended fish around deeper brush or just out roaming the basin.

Kent Park Lake

Bluegill - Good: Fish early and late in the day around deeper submerged brush piles.

Lake Macbride

The majority of the lake is covered with 8 inches of ice, but there are some thin spots along the boat ramps. There is open water down towards the dam on the north side, including the two bays closest to the dam. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills can be caught on most structure but size is usually 4-6 inches. Crappie - Slow: A few anglers are finding the right brush piles and catching some 10-14 inches crappies. Depths of 10-15 feet seem to be producing best. The first hour or two of sunlight has been the most productive.

Pleasant Creek Lake

Most of the lake has about 8 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: Fish brush or along the dam with small jigs/waxies. Walleye - Fair: Most walleyes are being caught along the dam in 15-20 feet of water, but some are being caught off the main ramp. They can be caught on bluegill tackle but small spoons are working as well. Most fish are less than 15 inches.

Diamond Lake

Remember, no minnows are allowed here. Channel Catfish - Slow: A few catfish are being caught by panfish anglers. Bluegill - Good: Fish brush piles or the creek channel with small jigs/waxies. Most fish are 7-8 inches. Crappie - Fair: Fish around deeper brush piles with small jigs/waxies. Most fish are about 9 inches. Walleye - Slow: A few walleyes are being caught by panfish anglers.

Union Grove Lake

Ice thickness is about 9 inches. The aeration system is turned on so caution should be used down towards the south end of the lake as there will be open water. Bluegill - Fair: Fish along the bottom next to brush piles. Crappie - Fair: Look for suspended fish near deeper brush or roaming the basin.

Coralville Reservoir

Ice depths are variable. There are some thin spots along some shores and most boat ramps. There are even open water areas, with the biggest one being between Bobbers and Sandy Beach. Crappie - Fair: Some nice fish are being caught at times. Look for fish around submerged trees, pallet structures, or suspended along steeper rock bluffs.

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

Red Haw Lake

There is about 6-7 inches of ice reported in the bay with the boat ramps. There is an area of open water by the beach and the dam so use caution if venturing out of the campground bay. Some anglers have had some success using small jigs tipped with wax worms for bluegills.

Albia (lower)

There is an area of open water near the dam so use caution in that area. There is approximately 4-5 inches of ice at the upper end of the reservoir. Use small jigs tipped with a wax worm for bluegills.

Rathbun Reservoir

The lake level is 902.93 feet with 904 feet being normal. There is still some open water so use caution. Ice thickness varies across the lake. Most of the fishing so far has been in the Honey Creek area and other bays and coves. Crappies have been biting on small jigs but sorting is required for larger fish. Don't forget Lake Rathbun contains zebra mussels so make sure to clean, drain, and dry equipment before transporting to another water body.

For questions regarding fishing in south central Iowa, call the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406.

SOUTHWEST

Beaver Lake

Bluegill - Good: Anglers are finding actively feeding bluegills and crappies near the wood structure.

Rock Creek Lake

Crappie - Fair: Crappie are being picked up in 10–12 feet of water. The larger fish are running 10 to 12 inches.

Roberts Creek Lake

Crappie - Good: Ice anglers after crappie are doing well on the lower portion of the lake.

Big Creek Lake

Bluegill - Good: Anglers are catching good sized bluegills over brush piles. Crappie - Fair: Some anglers are finding the evening and night bite crappie fishing 25 to 30 feet of water using minnows or glow jigs with wax worms. Crappies will be suspended 4 to 8 feet off the bottom.

Hickory Grove Lake

Bluegill - Good: Hickory Grove has about 8 inches of ice. Ice anglers fishing over pallet and brush piles are doing well on good size bluegills from 7 to 9 inches with an occasional crappie mixed in. Crappie - Fair: Crappie fishing has been fair to slow. Crappies are being caught in the evenings using minnows.

Lake Ahquabi

Bluegill - Fair: Some good sized bluegills are being caught on the brush piles. Good ice fishing brush piles and rock piles can be found out from the steep north shore.

Red Rock Reservoir

Crappie - Good: Ice anglers have been doing well on crappies in the marina bay around the docks and in the dredge area.

Lake Petoka

Rainbow Trout - Fair: Fall stocked rainbow trout are still being caught with wax worms or small live minnows. The next trout stocking will be through the ice on Jan. 26.

Banner Lake (south)

Rainbow Trout - Good: Rainbow trout that were stocked can now be caught through the ice using wax worms on jigs and jigging spoons or small live minnows.

Good ice fishing conditions continue in central Iowa. Ponds and lakes in central Iowa continue to average 10 inches of ice. For questions on central Iowa lakes and rivers contact Ben Dodd or Andy Otting at 515-432-2823.

Greenfield Lake

Greenfield has 8 inches of ice. The lake is 6 feet low. Use extreme caution when venturing out as geese are keeping a portion on the west side open. Bluegill - Fair: Small jigs and wax worms are catching 7-8-inch fish. Crappie - Fair: Sorting is necessary but anglers are catching crappies up to 10 inches.

Meadow Lake

Meadow Lake has 8 inches of ice. Bluegill - Slow: The bluegill bite was slow this week. Fish average 8 inches.

Nodaway Lake

Nodaway is 7 feet low. The lake has 8 inches of ice and a good bluegill and crappie population. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are being caught using wax worms in 8 to 10 feet of water. Fish range from 7 to 8 inches. Crappie - Fair: The best crappie bite is in the evening just after dark. Fish minnows in 10 to 13 feet of water. Sorting is necessary for the 9 to 10-inch fish.

Littlefield Lake

Littlefield has 8 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: The bluegill bite was good last week using wax worms. North of the beach in 10 feet of water was a good location for 7-8-inch fish. Crappie - Slow: A few crappies have been caught with wax worms. All sizes are being caught up to 10 inches.

Lake Anita

Anita has 8 inches of ice. Geese are keeping a large area of open water near the dam. Anita has 9-inch bluegills and 10-inch crappies. Bluegill - Slow: Bluegills bite has been slow. The best success has been in the campground arm of the lake. Crappie - Slow: A few crappies have been caught in the late afternoon on minnows.

Willow Lake

Willow has 9 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are catching 8-inch bluegills on wax worms.

Arrowhead Pond

Arrowhead has 8 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills can be caught in 12 feet of water with wax worms. Fish average 8 inches. Crappie - Slow: A few crappies are being caught close to submerged trees using minnows or wax worms. Fish average 9 inches.

Big Lake (Including Gilbert's Pond)

Rainbow trout will be stocked on Jan. 18. A youth fishing event will be held Jan. 19. Registration will start at 9 a.m. with a drawing for prizes around noon. Rainbow Trout - Good: Trout can be caught on a variety of ice fishing jigs tipped with wax worms or minnows.

Lake Manawa

Manawa has 8 inches of ice. Channel Catfish - Fair: Catfish can be caught on wax worms north of the beach. Crappie - Fair: Crappies up to 12 inches are being caught on minnows. The best locations on the lake have been Tin Can dyke and north of the beach.

Hacklebarney East

Hacklebarney has 8 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills can be caught using wax worms. Fish average 8 inches. Crappie - Fair: Crappies are being caught in 18 feet of water using minnows.

Farm Creek Lake

Farm Creek has 8 inches of ice. The lake supports a good panfish population. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are being caught in 18 to 20 feet of water. Fish average 8 inches. Crappie - Fair: Fish minnows in 12 to 15 feet of water. The crappies average 9 inches.

Cold Springs District Farm Ponds

Farm ponds in the southwest district have 7-9 inches of ice. Remember to always get permission to fish private ponds. Bluegill - Good: The deepest part of the pond is usually the best location to start fishing for bluegills. Crappie - Fair: Larger ponds that support crappie populations have been good. Late afternoon has been the best time to target crappies.

Good ice fishing continues in the southwest district. Lakes have 7 to 9 inches of ice. For more information call the district office at Cold Springs at 712-769-2587

Lake Icaria

Most of the lake is ice covered. A few anglers are using the area just to the north of the beach and the old roadway under the main arm. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are finding some good bluegills just north of the beach in the old creek channel. Crappie - Good: The old roadway on the main arm and creek channel in the lower portion of the lake is producing some crappies. Evenings are best.

West Lake (Osceola)

Most of the lake has good ice. There is a thin spot just south of the east half of the dam. Be careful.

Little River Watershed Lake

The water level is down about 12 feet to allow completion of a shoreline stabilization project. The fish have been restocked and are growing fast.

Fogle Lake S.W.A.

The water level is down about 6 feet to allow boat ramp repairs and crowd the fish to increase predation. The repairs are complete. The water level will be allowed to rise as run-off occurs. Anglers are fishing the flooded trees and sub-merged brush piles for panfish. Bluegill - Fair: A few medium sized bluegills are coming from the creek channel and flooded trees. Crappie - Good: Some nice sized crappies are coming from the flooded trees around the creek channel.

Lake of Three Fires

Most of the lake has good ice. Bluegill - Good: Several bluegills are being caught from the tree pile 150 yards north of the center of the dam. Crappie - Good: Some nice crappies are biting from the cedar tree pile just north of the center of the dam. Wax worms are working but minnows are best.

Sands Timber Lake (Blockton Reservoir)

The lake has been drained to allow the construction of a wetland and shoreline stabilization to be completed.

Green Valley Lake

Most of the lake is ice covered. The waterfowl have kept a couple of areas at mid-lake open. Bluegill - Excellent: Some real big bluegills can be caught from the deeper cedar tree piles. The piles just south of the main ramp and immediately north of the center of the dam are the most popular. Crappie - Excellent: Twilight and evenings are producing a lot of big crappies. Mid-day crappie fishing has been slow. Minnows are best but wax worms will work.

Summitt Lake

The spillway replacement project is complete but run-off has not refilled the lake. Restocking and boating will occur when water levels rise.

Three Mile Lake

The water level is down about 4 feet. The lake is mostly frozen over. Crappie - Fair: A few nice sized crappies are coming from the creek channel edges in the upper portion of the lake and from around the deeper tree piles in the mid and lower portion of the lake.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake

The water level is down about 3.5 feet. Ice has formed over the most of the lake. Bluegill - Excellent: Anglers are finding some big bluegills near the flooded trees near the creek channel. 10 to 16 feet down is a good depth to start. Wax worms any time of the day are working well. Crappie - Good: Anglers are a lot of big crappies from around the creek channel of the west shore and the deeper edges of the fish mounds. Flooded trees and some of the deeper piles seem to be better. Twilight and night is the best. Mid-day crappie angling is tough.

Criss Cove County Park Pond

The ice is good and anglers are finding fish. Bluegill - Good: Some mid-sized bluegills are being caught on wax worms from the middle of the lake. Crappie - Fair: A few nice crappies are being caught from just south of the middle of the dam.

Good ice is covering most lakes. The cold temps have added some new ice. There are still some open areas at some location. Angling activity is very strong and anglers are finding a lot of fish. Check thickness often and be careful.

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DES MOINES, IA - The weekly Iowa fishing reports from 1/24/13 are gathered from local bait shops, angler creel surveys, and county and state parks staff. They are compiled by lake and species then given a rating as to how good the fishing is on each lake by species. There are always current Iowa Fishing Reports in this forum. Enjoy.

For Current Iowa Fishing reports - Click Here

NORTHWEST IOWA FISHING REPORTS

Yellow Smoke Park Lake

Yellow Smoke has around 8-9 inches of good ice. Water clarity is excellent, however, fishing has been pretty slow. The few bluegills that anglers are catching are big, though.

Crawford Creek Impoundment

Fishing was good over the past few weeks, but has become more hit or miss now. Channel Catfish - Fair: Some decent sized catfish are being harvested while fishing for other species. Bluegill - Good: Anglers have been doing very well for bluegill. The mornings until noon have been the best. Most anglers are fishing just southeast of the center of the lake and some are fishing over the Christmas trees. Anglers are using wax worms and fishing a few feet off the bottom, but fish finders are also helping to pick up suspended fish when they move through. Bluegills are very nice sized. Crappie - Fair: Some nice crappie are being picked up while bluegill fishing. Yellow Perch - Fair: Some nice perch are also being picked up.

Oldham Lake

Oldham has 7 to 10 inches of ice depending on location. Fishing has been very slow. Anglers are marking a lot of fish, but are having difficulty getting them to bite. Recent surveys show an abundance of 7.5 to 8.5-inch bluegills.

Brushy Creek Lake

There is around 10 inches of ice in the near shore areas and in the upper end of the lake. Avoid the main body of the lake as ice conditions can be quite variable. There is open water east of the beach. Most anglers are targeting the north end of the lake. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are biting, but most are on the small side. Crappie - Good: Crappies are biting, but most are on the small side. Walleye - Fair: Some nice walleye have been reported.

Bacon Creek Lake

Bacon Creek has around 8 inches of ice. 1,500 trout were stocked Jan. 12, and fishing has been excellent. Try fishing about 2 to 3 feet below the ice with bright/shiny lures. Later in the season, switch to baits like Berkley power bait.

Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)

Fishing for walleye has been sporadic. Anglers are spread out over the lake in search of fish. A few white bass are being picked up while targeting walleye. Ice is around 14 inches, but there was some open water near the north shore earlier in the week, likely from a pressure seam. Water clarity is still poor.

Arrowhead Lake

Arrowhead Lake has around 8 to 9 inches of ice. An ice-fishing clinic held last weekend yielded good results for bluegill. Bluegill - Fair: Fish for bluegill around the pallet structures on the west side of the lake. Mid morning has been the best. Chartreuse jigs seemed to work better than orange or silver. Bluegills ranged from 7.5 to 8.5 inches.

Black Hawk Pits

Black Hawk Pit has around 9 inches of ice. Fishing continues to be slow.

Moorland Pond

Moorland Pond was stocked with trout Jan. 18. Fishing for trout is good. Rainbow Trout - Excellent: Fishing for trout has been good since they were stocked a week ago.

For more information or questions contact the Black Hawk Fish Management Office in Lake View at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake

Anglers are saying that action is slow; a few bluegills.

Briggs Woods Lake

Crappie - Good: Crappies started biting well towards evening on jig and wax worm.

Lower Pine Lake

Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills, average size, being caught deep and right on the bottom.

Upper Pine Lake

Not much activity on Upper Pine.

Lake Smith

Ice thickness at Smith lake is 13 inches plus. Bluegill fishing has been fair with the best bite later in the day.

Clear Lake

Ice depth is 12-15 inches. Warning: Be cautious around the pressure ridges that have developed near shore on the main lake. Fishing has slowed some but anglers have had good catches on the warmer days. Some anglers are venturing out on the main lake and having catches comparably to those on the little lake. Crappie - Slow: Crappies are mostly being found in 15-20 feet of water, and are being caught on minnows or wax worms. Yellow Perch - Slow: Perch are being caught in low numbers; a few of them are over 10 inches. Try a small spoon and a minnow or minnow head. Walleye - Slow: Yellow Bass - Fair: Yellow bass are scattered. Move around till you find numbers of them. They seem willing to bite whole minnows, cutbait, or wax worms.

Lake Cornelia

Anglers are catching lots of 6 to 8-inch yellow bass and some small walleyes.

Crystal Lake

Bluegill - Fair: Fish near the dredged area 8 to 12 feet of water. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth bass and an occasional walleye being caught on minnows.

Bluebill Lake

14 inches of ice. Fishing has been slow.

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

Big Spirit Lake

Expect to find 12-16 inches of ice across most of the lake with ATV travel being the best means. Be aware a few trucks have put tires through the ice the biggest area of concern is between Marble Beach and Templar Point. Northern Pike - Fair: Most pike are being caught by accident on walleye tackle, but setting tip ups with chubs around structure has been producing some fish. Bluegill - Slow: A few gills are being caught in Little Anglers Bay and off the grade. Try small jigs and being very quite as they are spooky. Yellow Perch - Slow: Look for perch off the ends of structure as well as in the main basin. Moving around looking for active fish may be needed in order to catch any numbers. Wigglers, waxies, and minnow heads on either spoons or small jigs seem to be the go to lures. Walleye - Slow: Action seems to be restricted to dawn and dusk without much of a pattern revealing itself. Try spoons and jigging raps tipped with a minnow head.

West Okoboji Lake

There is currently 12-14 inches of ice and ATVs are driving on much of the lake. Be aware there were goose holes in a few areas; avoid discolored ice and when in doubt turn back or test the ice with a spud. Northern Pike - Fair: Setting tip ups in or near weeds and on drop offs is producing a few pike. Bluegill - Slow: Look for bluegills in the bays (Emerson and Millers seem to be the best) in or near standing weeds. Sight fishing has been the most popular method but a few choose to hole hop. Try small jigs tipped with wax worms or wigglers but don't overlook some of the finesse plastics. Yellow Perch - Fair: Look for perch in 20 feet plus of water along drop offs or on mudflats. Try spoons tipped with live bait such as wigglers, wax worms, or minnow heads.

Lost Island Lake

Walleye - Slow: Look for walleyes around dawn and dusk on into night. Try jigging raps and spoons tipped with minnow heads.

Silver Lake (Palo Alto)

Walleye and perch fishing has been slow but if you put your dues in some nice fish can be caught. Being very quiet and fishing during low light will bring the most fish.

For more information contact the Spirit Lake Hatchery at 712-336-1840.

NORTHEAST

Volga Lake

Volga Lake has 12 inches of clear ice. Lots of folks have been out and are scattered mainly along the west shoreline and along the dam. Fish seem to be hanging around structure. Bluegill - Good: Anglers using a small jig tipped with a wax worm are having success. Crappie - Good: Anglers are finding fish near structure. Try using small teardrop shaped jigs tipped with wax worms.

Lake Hendricks

The lake has 10 inches of ice. Few anglers were out this past weekend. The bite should pick up by the weekend. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills have been found in 8 to 9 foot of water. Small jigs tipped with wax worms continue to work well. Crappie - Fair: Anglers are catching crappies up to 10 inches in about 8 feet of water using small jigs tipped with wax worms.

Lake Meyer

The bite slowed last weekend with the front that came through but should pick up by this weekend. The best times to fish are early in the morning or toward evening. Fish are hanging toward the bottom this week. If you don't find fish in one spot, move. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are finding fish near the bottom using small jigs tipped with wax worms. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Bass have been caught while fishing for crappie. Crappie - Good: Crappie have been hitting small jigs tipped with wax worms fished off the bottom.

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Yellow River

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Turkey River (below Clermont)

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Cedar River (above Nashua)

Ice depths vary so check often as you go out. Crappie - Good: Anglers are using small jigs tipped with a wax worm or a minnow head. Yellow Perch - Fair: Perch have been caught in the backwaters and around structure. Walleye - Fair: Anglers have been catching walleye below the Nashua dam using a spinner with a slow retrieve.

Decorah District Streams

Fly fishing has been superb in January. Streamer patterns such as wooly buggers and light spruces have been successful. Pheasant tail, prince and GRHE nymphs have produced fish, as well as a variety of wet flies including red badgers and partridge and oranges. Try your smallest dry flies for the occasional rising trout. Spin fishers using spinnerbaits and roostertails are reporting excellent catches of trout on area trout streams.

Ice conditions on area lakes are in excellent condition. Trout streams with good water quality will be open and accessible in many instances. For more information or to let us know what's been biting, contact the Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.

Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)

Ice conditions are reported as 8 inches of good ice across the lake. Locate efforts near structure towards deeper areas of the dam especially during early morning or late afternoon hours. Bluegill - Fair: Try a wax worm on a small ice jig near sunken brush piles for decent bluegill.

Big Woods Lake

Some crappie and bluegill are being caught, but be cautious of uneven ice. Bluegill - Fair: Wax worm tipped on an ice fishing jig has been fair for bluegill. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing a wax worm or small crappie minnow under a jig, fish heavier jigs in deeper water.

Brinker Lake

Anglers have been concentrating near habitat structures with some nice crappies being caught. Bluegill - Fair: Wax worm tipped on an ice fishing jig has been fair for bluegill. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing a wax worm or small crappie minnow under a jig, fish heavier jigs in deeper water.

George Wyth Lake

Anglers are reporting 7-8 inches of ice. Fishing has been fair for crappie and bluegill. Bluegill - Fair: Try a wax worm on a small ice jig near sunken habitat for decent bluegill. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing a wax worm or small crappie minnow under a jig, fish heavier jigs in deeper water.

South Prairie Lake

Fishing has been fair for decent sized bluegills near submerged structure. Bluegill - Fair: Try a wax worm on a small ice jig near sunken habitat for decent bluegill.

Martens Lake

The northwest portion of the lake has been good for fishing, especially for the early morning and late afternoon bite. Bluegill are anywhere from 6.5-8.5 inches in size. Bluegill - Fair: Wax worm tipped on an ice jig in 3-4 feet of water near weeds or structure has been good. Crappie - Fair: Wax worm or minnow tipped on an ice jig fished just under the ice has been fair for crappie.

Plainfield

Nice sized bluegills are being caught. Move often or locate structure for some good bluegill fishing. Bluegill - Fair: Wax worm tipped on an ice fishing jig has been good for bluegill.

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)

There have been reports of walleye and crappie being caught on the Cedar River in Black Hawk County. Use extreme caution when venturing out onto river ice as conditions may vary greatly and is strongly not recommended. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing a small jig or spoon tipped with a minnow under the ice. Walleye - Fair: Try a jigging spoon tipped with a minnow for some nicer walleye.

The 2012 fishing licenses have expired. Be sure to check out the new fishing license options available for 2013. Fishing has remained only fair throughout Black Hawk County for most panfish. Black Hawk and Bremer County lakes are reporting anywhere from 8-10 inches of good ice, use caution as ice thickness can vary on lakes. For more information contact the district office in Manchester at 563-927-3276 for additional information.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 9

Lansing river stage is 7.8 feet and expected to remain stable over the next week. Backwater ice thickness is 8-10 inches. Bluegill - Good: Nice sized bluegills still being caught in Shore Slough and Village Creek boat ramp but bite is inconsistent. Crappie - Fair: Some nice sized crappies caught in Shore Slough but bite is inconsistent. Yellow Perch - Fair: A few smaller yellow perch are being caught.

Mississippi River Pool 10

Lynxville river stage is up 12.7 feet and expected to remain at this level over the next week. Ice thickness is 8 to 10 inches or more in most areas. The boat ramp at Lynxville is blocked by ice. Northern Pike - Fair: Pike still being caught on tip ups in Norwegian and Bussey Lake. Bluegill - Good: Nice sized bluegills still being caught in Joyce Lake, by Harpers Ferry, Norwegian and Ice Lake, in the Sny Magill area, Greymore Lake, by Prairie Du Chien, and Bussey Lake, but bite is inconsistent. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Bass hitting tip ups in Bussey Lake. Crappie - Fair: Some good catches of crappie reported in Sandbar Slough in the Sny Magill area as well as Bussey Lake.

Mississippi River Pool 11

River stage at Lock and Dam 10 in Guttenberg is 4.2 feet and expected to remain stable over the next week. The DNR boat ramp in Guttenberg but the city ramp is blocked with ice. Ice thickness is 8-10 inches in most backwaters. Bluegill - Good: Nice sized bluegills biting well in the Mud Lake marina and Zollicofers Slough as well as the lower part of Sunfish Lake on the Wisconsin side but bite can be inconsistent. Crappie - Fair: Some nice crappies reported in Zollicofers Slough and Sunfish Lake but bite is inconsistent. Yellow Perch - Fair: A few smaller perch being caught in Mud Lake marina and Sunfish Lake. Sauger - Fair: Vertical jigging with a minnow for sauger in the tail waters has been successful. Walleye - Slow: Walleye are biting on jig and minnow fished along drop-offs in the tail water areas.

Most backwater lakes have a good 8-10 inches of solid ice but caution should always be used along shorelines and any areas that may have current. Ice cleats are recommended until snow returns.

Mississippi River Pool 12

At the Dubuque Lock and Dam the water level is 4.8 feet and steady. Safe ice should occur in most stagnant backwater areas but please take care and never go on any ice if unsure of the thickness. Always drill test holes and never assume the ice is safe. White Bass - Fair: Small white bass are mixing in with the gills being caught at O’Leary’s Lake and various other backwater areas. Bluegill - Fair: Cold weather seemed to have decreased the bluegill bite. Anglers who did fish Pool 12 are reporting catching small fish mostly from the various harbors. Some activity is being reported also on Frentress and O’Leary’s lakes. Fish Trap and Keogh was reported to be slow. Crappie - Fair: Some crappies are also being caught with the gills but they too have tended to be small. In some place very small 3 inch type fish are pestering anglers. Yellow Perch - Fair: Some yellow perch were reported along the channel edge in areas of safe ice. Anglers using flashy ice fishing jigs, spoons and minnow heads.

Mississippi River Pool 13

Water Level at Bellevue dam is at 4.4 feet and steady. It is a tug of war with ice sometimes socking the Bellevue tail water ramp in and then wind and waves opening it back up. Ice fishing is taking place at many locations on Pool 13 but use caution and never assume the ice is safe, and drill test holes. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills seemed to slow down during the recent cold front. Size in most places has been reported as mostly small with much sorting needed. Most anglers using various tear drop type lures tipped with grubs. Crappie - Fair: Crappie fishing has been excellent all year in Pools 12 to 14. A few are being taken by ice anglers but most of the reported fish are small. Yellow Perch - No Report: Some yellow perch were showing up in the tail waters and the size has been pretty decent, however, no one fished the tail waters during the recent cold snap. Sauger - No Report: The sauger bite is was good with many small fish being reported mainly by anglers using a three-way rig tipped with a minnow. Anglers should understand that when fishing in water depth below 35 feet the deep water hooking mortality of walleye and sauger increases greatly. Cold weather this week limited the tail water fishing activity.

Mississippi River Pool 14

Water levels at Fulton are low at 4.3 feet. Warm weather two weeks ago opened up a lot of the typical ice fishing areas. Recent cold weather refroze many of these same spots. Please take care on the ice and make sure it is safe. Bluegill - No Report: Before the recent warm spell bluegills were being reported out of Rock Creek and Cattail Slough area. Many of the fish are small and you have to catch 50 to keep 12. Please take caution as ice has deteriorated greatly. Sauger - No Report: A few boats are being reported in the Pool 14 tail water and catching some small sauger on a jig and minnow and three-way rigs. It is unsure if the ramp in Clinton is still open for use.

Mississippi River Pool 15

We have received no information regarding fishing on this water body this week.

Cold weather refroze areas that had opened up but take care on the ice and never cross into places where you are uncertain of the ice depth. Take materials needed to help you get out of the water if you do fall through. Ice will be very slick at times; some anglers are putting short stove pipe screws in the soles of their boots or using chains to help walk on the ice.

Mississippi River Pool 16

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 15 is 4.00 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions. We have received no tail water fishing information for this pool this week.

Mississippi River Pool 17

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 16 is 3.19 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions. Big Timber still has some thin ice conditions. The boat ramps in Muscatine are frozen in.

Mississippi River Pool 18

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 17 is 3.35 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions. We have received no tail water fishing information for this pool this week.

Mississippi River Pool 19

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 18 is 1.29 feet. Ice fishing is not advisable due to unsafe ice conditions. We have received no tail water fishing information for this pool this week.

Mississippi River Pools 16-19: Ice conditions are still unsafe throughout the pools. Many of the backwaters still have areas with thin ice. Ice fishing is not advisable at this time. With the recent cold temperatures the main channel has frozen again. Many of the boat ramps are iced in. For more fishing information contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.

SOUTHEAST

Lake Belva Deer

Ice is 6 plus inches. Last week's warm weather didn't seem to hurt the ice conditions much and a return to cold weather has repair the damage done to the edges of the ice. Anglers are catching an occasional walleye that was stocked years ago by the county. Bluegill - Good: Go early. The bite seems to kind of wrap up by about 9:30 a.m. Come in the middle of the day and the bite will be really slow. It picks back up around 4:30-5 p.m. Crappie - Good: Anglers are picking up good numbers of crappies during the morning. There is a better bite around dark.

Pollmiller Park Lake

Ice got a lot thinner last week. Water came up through the cracks when the ranger stepped out on the ice earlier this week. The cold weather since has helped some but now the ice is cloudy and really nobody has been out to fish since.

Lake of the Hills

Last week’s warm weather did real damage to the ice. This week's cold nights have repaired some of the damage but not all. Use caution; there are still some thinner spots. Stay clear of the aeration system’s hole around the boat rental and beach area. Lake of the Hills is the only lake in West Lake Park where live minnows are allowed. Rainbow Trout - Fair: Trout catches are sporadic but if you keep moving, limits are still possible. Bluegill - Good: Fish the deeper brush piles and you'll find the bluegills. Will have to do some sorting to find the bigger ones. Wax worms are the popular bait. Crappie - Good: Expect to find crappies mixed in with the bluegills.

Big Hollow Lake

Ice thickness has been reduced to about 3 inches, but that looks to be good, solid ice. Be very careful though as Big Hollow doesn't seem to develop a consistent ice layer and has a lot of variation in ice thickness. Bluegill - Fair: Work the flooded timber just down from the boat ramp and you should be able to find some bluegills.

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

Hannen Lake

Remember, no minnows are allowed here. Bluegill - Fair: Look for submerged brush piles. Most fish are 6-8 inches. Best results have been in water less than 15 feet. Crappie - Good: Fish around submerged brush piles in 15-20 feet of water. Generally the fish are suspending 10-15 feet down. Most fish are about 9 inches.

Iowa Lake

Bluegill - Fair: Fish around submerged brush with a small jig/waxie. Crappie - Fair: Look for suspended fish around deeper brush or just out roaming the basin.

Kent Park Lake

The colder weather has slowed fishing down. In addition to the lake, some bluegills are being caught in some of the park ponds. Bluegill - Fair: Fish early and late in the day around deeper submerged brush piles.

Lake Macbride

The majority of the lake is covered with 6-9 inches of ice. However, some shorelines (mainly south facing or those with shallow rock or boat ramps) have thin or no ice around the edge. The worst shorelines are along the Cottage Reserve Road and either direction of the Opie Ave. boat ramp. There is open water down towards the dam on the north side, as well as under the causeway bridge extending southeast. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills can be caught on most structure but size is usually 4-7 inches. Crappie - Slow: A few anglers are finding the right brush piles and catching some 10-14 inches crappies. Depths of 10-15 feet seem to be producing best. The first hour or two of sunlight has been the most productive time.

Central Park Lake

Bluegill - Fair: Jig/waxie has been producing some decent bluegills.

Pleasant Creek Lake

Most of the lake has about 8 inches of ice but some shorelines or ramps may be thinner. Sunrise and sunset has been best due to the clear ice and water. White Bass - Slow: A few white bass are being caught in 20-30 feet of water by walleye anglers. Bluegill - Fair: Fish brush or along the dam with small jigs/waxies. Walleye - Fair: Most walleyes are being caught in 20-30 feet of water. Try spoons or minnows for the bigger fish.

Diamond Lake

Remember, no minnows are allowed here. Ice is about 9-10 inches now. Bluegill - Good: Fish brush piles or the creek channel with small jigs/waxies. Most fish are 7-8 inches. Crappie - Fair: Fish around deeper brush piles with small jigs/waxies. Most fish are about 9 inches.

Union Grove Lake

The aeration system is turned on so caution should be used down towards the south end of the lake as there will be open water. The recent warmth and wind has made the open water even larger and the "Thin Ice" signs around the opening have been wiped out. Bluegill - Slow: Fish along the bottom next to brush piles.

Coralville Reservoir

Ice depths are variable. Much of the lake has 6-8 inches, but many areas (especially upstream of Mehaffey Bridge) have poor shorelines or even open water. Access from the Macbride Park boat ramp is not an option at this point due to open water from the west side of the ramp all the way down below the Macbride spillway. Right under Mehaffey Bridge is also open, as well as nearly 100 acres between Bobbers Marina and Hoosier Bay. Crappie - Fair: Some nice fish are being caught by anglers able to get on and around the lake. Look for fish suspended around submerged trees in coves.

Dike Lake

Bluegill - Fair: Crappie - Fair:

Murphy Lake

Bluegill - Fair: Crappie - Fair:

Sand Lake

This is the lake on the east side of Marshalltown. There were 2,000 trout stocked in late October. Bluegill - Fair: Crappie - Fair:

Hale Ponds

Bluegill - Fair: Jig and waxies are producing some fish. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Bluegill anglers are catching some bass as well on jig/waxies.

FYI...The City of North Liberty has now approved ice fishing on city owned ponds. For more information, contact the Lake Macbride Fisheries Station at 319-624-3615.

Red Haw Lake

There is about 6 inches of ice reported in the bay with the boat ramps. There is an area of open water by the beach and the dam so use caution if venturing out of the campground bay. Anglers have been catching some bluegills in the afternoons with the bite slowing down after dark. Use small jigs tipped with a wax worm.

Albia (lower)

There is an area of open water near the dam and ice conditions have been variable with the weather changes. Use caution and drill test holes. Use small jigs tipped with a wax worm for bluegills.

Lake Sugema

Lake Sugema still has a lot of open water. Most anglers have been fishing the Tug Fork lakes off the northwest corner of Lake Sugema. Fishing has been slow but some anglers are catching some bluegills using small jigs.

Rathbun Reservoir

The lake level is 902.82 feet with 904 feet being normal. Ice thickness varies across the lake and there are still some areas of open water so use caution and drill test holes. Fishing has been slow with most anglers fishing in the bays and coves. Anglers have been catching some crappie, but some sorting may be required for larger fish. Don't forget Lake Rathbun contains zebra mussels so make sure to clean, drain, and dry equipment before transporting to another water body.

For questions regarding fishing in south central Iowa, call the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406.

SOUTHWEST

Beaver Lake

Bluegill - Good: Anglers are finding actively feeding bluegills and crappies near the wood structure.

Jacob Krumm Nature Preserve Lake (west)

Bluegill - Good: Good catches of 7 to 8-inch bluegills are being caught on wax worms throughout the day out from the southwest shoreline and around flooded timber. Crappie - Fair: Decent catches of 9 to 11-inch crappie are coming from anglers fishing around the flooded timber in the upper half of the lake using wax worms. The best crappie bite has been early in the morning. Live minnows are not permitted at this lake.

Rock Creek Lake

Crappie - Fair: Crappie are being picked up in 10 to 12 feet of water. The better size fish are running 10 to 12 inches.

Roberts Creek Lake

Crappie - Good: Ice anglers after crappie are doing well on the lower portion of the lake.

Big Creek Lake

Bluegill - Good: Anglers are catching decent numbers of good sized bluegills over brush piles and in the 30 feet plus water from mid lake and south. Crappie - Fair: Some anglers are finding the evening and night bite crappie fishing 25 to 30 feet of water using minnows or glow jigs with wax worms. The crappie will be suspended 4 to 8 feet off the bottom.

Hickory Grove Lake

Bluegill - Good: Hickory Grove has about 8 inches of ice. Ice anglers fishing over pallet and brush piles are doing well on good size bluegills from 7 to 9 inches with an occasional crappie mixed in. Crappie - Fair: Crappie fishing has been fair to slow. Crappies are being caught in the evenings using minnows.

Lake Ahquabi

Bluegill - Fair: Some good size bluegills are being caught on the brush piles. Good ice fishing brush piles and rock piles can be found out from the steep north shore.

Red Rock Reservoir

Crappie - Good: Ice anglers have been doing well on crappies in the marina bay around the docks and in the dredge area.

Lake Petoka

Rainbow Trout - Good: There will be a trout stocking on Jan. 26, around noon. A family fishing event will be held during the stocking.

Ada Hayden Heritage Park Lake

The next trout stocking will be in the north side Feb. 2, around noon.

Banner Lake (south)

Rainbow Trout - Good: Rainbow trout that were stocked can now be caught through the ice using wax worms on jigs and jigging spoons or small live minnows.

Cold temps have made up for the damage done to the ice during last week's warm up. Ponds and lakes in central Iowa are back to 10 plus inches of ice. For questions on central Iowa lakes and rivers contact Ben Dodd or Andy Otting at 515-432-2823.

Greenfield Lake

Greenfield has 9 inches of ice. The lake is 6 feet low. Bluegill - Fair: Small jigs and wax worms are catching 7 to 8-inch fish. Crappie - Fair: Sorting is necessary but anglers are catching crappies up to 10 inches.

Meadow Lake

Meadow Lake has 10 inches of ice. Bluegill - Slow: The bluegill bite continues to be slow. Fish average 8 inches.

Nodaway Lake

Nodaway is 7 feet low. The lake has 9 inches of ice and a good bluegill and crappie population. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are being caught using wax worms in 10 feet of water. Sorting is necessary for 7 to 8-inch fish. Crappie - Fair: The best crappie bite is in the evening just after dark. Fish minnows or wax worms in 10 to 13 feet of water. Sorting is necessary for the 9 to 10-inch fish.

Littlefield Lake

Littlefield has 10 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: The best bluegill bite has been in the afternoon. North of the beach in 10 feet of water was a good location for 7 to 8-inch fish. Crappie - Slow: A few crappies have been caught with wax worms. All sizes are being caught up to 10 inches.

Lake Anita

Anita has 9 inches of ice. Geese are keeping a large area of open water near the dam. Anita has 9-inch bluegill and 10-inch crappie. Bluegill - Slow: Bluegill bite has been slow. The best success has been around brush piles in the campground arm of the lake. Crappie - Slow: A few crappies have been caught in the late afternoon on minnows.

Willow Lake

Willow has 10 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are catching 8-inch bluegills on wax worms.

Arrowhead Pond

Arrowhead has 9 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills can be caught in 12 feet of water with wax worms. Fish average 8 inches. Crappie - Slow: A few crappies are being caught close to submerged trees using minnows or wax worms. fish average 9 inches.

Big Lake (Including Gilbert's Pond)

1,000 rainbow trout were stocked on Jan. 18. Big Lake has 8 inches of ice. Rainbow Trout Good: Trout can be caught on a variety of ice fishing jigs tipped with wax worms or minnows.

DeSoto Bend

Desoto Bend has 9 inches of ice. Crappie - Slow: Very few reports have come from Desoto. Crappie fishing has been slow all winter.

Lake Manawa

Manawa is holding its annual ice fishing derby this weekend. Only the southwest portion of the lake will fished due to variable ice conditions. Channel Catfish - Fair: Catfish can be caught on wax worms north of the beach. Crappie - Fair: Crappies up to 12 inches are being caught on minnows. The best locations on the lake have been Tin Can dyke and north of the beach.

Hacklebarney East

Hacklebarney has 9 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills can be caught using wax worms. Fish average 8 inches. Crappie - Fair: Crappies are being caught in 18 feet of water using minnows.

Farm Creek Lake

Farm Creek has 9 inches of ice. The lake supports a good panfish population. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are being caught in 18 to 20 feet of water. Fish average 8 inches. Crappie - Slow: Fish minnows in 12 to 15 feet of water. The crappies average 9 inches.

Cold Springs District Farm Ponds

Farm ponds in the southwest district have 8-10 inches of ice. Remember to always get permission to fish private ponds. Bluegill - Good: The deepest part of the pond is usually the best location to start fishing for bluegills. Crappie - Fair: Large ponds that support crappie populations have been good. Late afternoon has been the best time to target crappies.

Cold weather has improved ice conditions in the southwest district. Lakes have 8 to 10 inches of ice. For more information call the district office at Cold Springs at 712-769-2587.

Lake Icaria

Most of the lake is ice covered. There is an open area just north of the beach point. Anglers are fishing nearby. Check the ice thickness often. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are finding some good bluegills just north of the beach in the old creek channel and around some of the deeper cedar tree piles. Crappie - Fair: The old roadway on the main arm and creek channel in the lower portion of the lake is producing some crappies. Evenings are best.

West Lake (Osceola)

Most of the lake has good ice. There is a thin area just south of the west end of the dam. Be very careful. Crappie - Excellent: A lot of mid-sized crappies are being caught during the early mornings, evenings, and after dark. Minnows are best but wax worms will work.

Little River Watershed Lake

The water level is down about 12 feet to allow completion of a shoreline stabilization project. The fish have been restocked and are growing fast.

Fogle Lake S.W.A.

The water level is down about 6 feet to allow boat ramp repairs and crowd the fish to increase predation. The repairs are complete. The water level will be allowed to rise as run-off occurs. Anglers are fishing the flooded trees and sub-merged brush piles for panfish. Crappie - Good: Some nice sized crappies are coming from the flooded trees around the creek channel.

Lake of Three Fires

Most of the lake has good ice. Bluegill - Good: Several bluegills are being caught from the tree pile 150 yards north of the center of the dam. Crappie - Good: Some nice crappies are biting from the cedar tree pile just north of the center of the dam. Wax worms are working but minnows are best.

Sands Timber Lake (Blockton Reservoir)

The lake has been drained to allow the construction of a wetland and shoreline stabilization to be completed.

Green Valley Lake

Most of the lake is ice covered. The waterfowl have kept a couple of areas at mid-lake open. Bluegill - Excellent: Some real big bluegills can be caught from the deeper cedar tree piles immediately north of the center of the dam. Crappie - Excellent: The cedar tree piles are producing a lot of big crappies during twilight and evening hours. Mid-day crappie fishing has been slow. Minnows are best but wax worms will work.

Summitt Lake

The spillway replacement project is complete but run-off has not refilled the lake. Restocking and boating will occur when water levels rise.

Three Mile Lake

The water level is down about 4 feet. The lake is mostly frozen over. Crappie - Fair: A few nice sized crappies are coming from the creek channel edges in the upper portion of the lake and from around the deeper tree piles in the mid and lower portion of the lake.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake

The water level is down about 3.5 feet. Ice has formed over the most of the lake. Bluegill - Excellent: Anglers are finding some big bluegills near the flooded trees near the creek channel. 10 to 16 feet down is a good depth to start. Wax worms any time of the day are working well. Crappie - Good: Anglers are a lot of big crappies from around the creek channel of the west shore and the deeper edges of the fish mounds. Flooded trees and some of the deeper piles seem to be better. Twilight and night is the best. Mid-day crappie angling is tough.

Criss Cove County Park Pond

The ice is good and anglers are finding fish. Bluegill - Good: Some mid-sized bluegills are being caught on wax worms from the middle of the lake.

Good ice is covering most lakes. The waterfowl are keeping the water opens at localized locations of the bigger lakes. Angling activity is very strong and anglers are finding a lot of fish. Check thickness often and be careful.

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Thanks. I decided to go with my gut, and ordered medium light action 8'6" Depthmaster rods. Spent some time trolling with them the other day, and I think they'll be fine. Just gotta remember to be careful with the larger fish around the boat when netting. Now if I could just better understand seasonal locations/presentations for my local walleye, I'd be all set! Trolled for 4.5 hrs without so much as a nibble yesterday. Trolled various cranks and harnesses the entire time, at different depths/speeds (1.0-1.5 mph with harnesses, and 1.8 -2.4 with cranks), hoping to make contact with one. I did find the Precission Trolling app to be pretty darn accurate with my dive curves though. So that was refreshing ... :-)
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    • Way to go Ryan, and Dad. Can't wait to see the pics. Congrats
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