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vman11

Laker Rod/Reel Set-Up

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I'm looking to get into Ontario lakers on LOTW this winter and am in the process of gearing up.

Fleet Farm has some killer rod sales right now, so I picked up a St. Croix 36" MH. If I get into it more, I plan to look towards a Thorne Bros 42".

Suggestions on a good spinning reel? Something mid-range, I'd like to spend $50 or less (if possible).

How about line suggestions? I run PowerPro on my walleye rigs with success. Will that work for lakers as well?

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How many rigs total do you plan to take with you? You'll want more than one. You don't want to take a trip like that and not have back up.

I'm not familiar with the St. Croix MH rod but I have purchase a 36 MH Gander brand before and no longer use it for lakers. Just not enough backbone. I have TB rods, Berkleys, Jason Mitchells, and a short St. Croix meant for walleyes but just strong enough for average MN lakers.

If you're thinking about a 42 TB rod, order it now. They haven't had any pre made this year that I know of and they take a little bit of time.

Your spinning reel should be a mid size model with a smooth drag. I would think you could find something decent for around $50. I'm not using anything exciting, just stick with the good brands. I did really like a black Penn reel I saw last year but didn't see in on the shelf this year. Didn't need it but wanted it.

I'm assuming you're going to run into a better average size laker on LOTW than I do around Ely so you'll want to use honest laker gear vs. heavy walleye gear. I run 10 lb mono line and I know Steve Foss uses 12 lb. I'd assume 12-14 should be OK up there and I'd sure stick with mono unless you're going to be in the shack all the time. Power Pro and any other braid will freeze up on you while fishing outside on cold temps.

Good luck! I'd like to get up there sometime myself. smile

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I stopped in TB last night and they had quite a few 42" rods ready to buy. However, I couldn't get myself to spend the +$80 for one having never been out. That's why I thought I'd start with a Croix.

Good point with the mono. Thought about getting a baitcaster set up next so I have 2, but again, just trying to learn the ropes and understand what's good.

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All my stuff is spooled with 12 lb XL mono, except for one 50-inch Scotty Mitchell custom rod that's spooled with 17 XL in case I get to make a trip to trophy lake trout god country one of these days. smile

As Wanderer said, mono is much more versatile when you don't know if you're going to go from heated shacks to out in the open. I like limp mono because there aren't any snag/abrasion issues in winter, and stiffer mono really stiffens up when it's cold.

I'm sold on Shimano for spinning reels. I have 8 of them in various models. If you spend $50 on one of the 2500 series Shimanos and spool it with 12 mono on your Croix MH, you should have a great setup with a smooth drag. The 1000 and some of the 2000 series don't hold enough line, IMO, and the 2500 series is a perfect fit for lakers.

On lakes where you have to play a lot of cat and mouse to get lakers to hit, baitcasters are a bit more sluggish than spinning setups, particularly when you want to drop your bait down the water column. Any line will ice up on the spool when out in the open, and while it's easy to strip frozen line on the spinning reel by lifting the rod sharply, the same cannot be said for baitcasters.

For fighting nice sized lakers I prefer a baitcaster (maybe because I spent so much of my youth after bass, pike and catfish). For ease of use I lean toward spinning. I'd say my clients and I use spinning gear to jig for lakers about 90 percent of the time.

I'd suggest your next rod be just a bit heavier (a not overly stiff H) and spooled with 14 mono. That way you'll have a bit of variation. Over time you'll decide which you prefer. I have four of the now 12-year-old solid graphite 36-inch Berkley Genz Sticks baitcasters (the ones they only made for a couple years with the yellow thread wrap on the guide closest to the reel), and they are plenty strong in MH for lakers. Some other MH rods are just a bit too noodly, though. It really varies among companies.

Up on the northern end of LOW you have serious chances for a 20lber or bigger. Next time out I'd definitely go one step up to heavier tackle.

Have a blast up there! smile

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I stopped in TB last night and they had quite a few 42" rods ready to buy.

Ughh, you may have just cost me $$!!

I didn't see them my last time there and a friend said they didn't have any made. I have two baitcaster/trigger sticks from them; one glass and one graphite. I want a graphite spinning rod though. Real bad. grin

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Ughh, you may have just cost me $$!!

I didn't see them my last time there and a friend said they didn't have any made. I have two baitcaster/trigger sticks from them; one glass and one graphite. I want a graphite spinning rod though. Real bad. grin

You don't have much time to pick one up before the weekend! Special hurried and panicked lunch trip to TB tomorrow? laugh

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Wanderer and Steve - awesome feedback. Thank you for your insight.

I've never fished Lakers but want to give it a valiant effort this season. I fish LOTW for walleye nearly every weekend as I live within 20 minutes but have recently caught this bug to catch a trout. Hopefully I don't get additcted smirk

Since you guys know your stuff, what should I newb like me have in his Laker tackle box? It's currently empty...

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Trust me, vman, when you watch on the Vexilar as that first laker comes bolting up out of deep water and slams your lure 10 feet under the ice and you're toe-to-toe with a 10 lber at the end of 10 feet of line . . . your heart is pounding, your drag is screaming and you can't believe what just happened. shocked

You'll get addicted right then to the strange combination of video game and ultimate fighting challenge that is lakers through the ice.

After that, walleyes and panfish just don't have the same appeal. You could ask me how I know, but . . . . laugh

If you're hitting Bside, many traditional walleye jigging lures will work fine. Forage base there is gazillions of smelt, most of them stunted, so smaller lures will yield you fish of all sizes. Traditional large laker lures often rule out eater sized lakers on Bside, while all sizes of laker will gulp a walleye sized Swedish Pimple, rattle spoon, blade bait or Jigging Rapala. The laker/pout spoons from Big Nasty tackle are also good.

If you want to round out a laker tackle box and drain the checkbook nicely, some continually effective traditional stuff includes several sizes/styles of airplane jigs, tubes, bucktail jigs, Slender and Do-Jigger spoons, Chubby and Lindy Darters, larger sized Jigging Raps and Sonar-style blade baits.

Second line can be a deadstick 10 feet away with a live minnow a few feet under the ice, a tip-up or other live/dead bait rig. Make sure the spool is good-sized and full if you opt for a tip-up. Lakers can make some fast long runs when they first grab a bait. Dead frozen cisco are an option for deadbait, and have long been a standard for laker guys.

That oughta get you started. smile

Once you're in the game for a few trips, you're so darn close to Canada that it would be a shame if you didn't head up to the Sioux Narrows area of LOW, where there are plenty of big fish, as well as other excellent Canadian laker lakes within pretty easy striking distance.

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Again, outstanding! This will definately get me started.

I'll be sure to keep in touch. I HAVE to get out now.

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You don't have much time to pick one up before the weekend! Special hurried and panicked lunch trip to TB tomorrow? laugh

Nope, done deal already. T Bros is in the danger zone - between work and home wink

Might have to make a stop at the other end of the danger zone today - the C store - to use up some points on a new reel to go with it. It's risky working that far away from home. grin

Vman, I was told they just brought the rods down a little while ago. They did have glass spinning rods there for about $56. They're a nice lower cost option. Either way, they all sell fast. If you do get hooked on lakers (yeah, IF) you'll probably be able to justify almost anything to make fishing them more enjoyable. smile

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White tubes work well on LOTW , ice fishing you can not use fish or fish parts on White Fish Bay ( I see this is on your list of spots to go )... barb less also. Jigging 4 to 6 feet or even higher works very well. Good luck

Rob

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I do two trips to Ontario for lakers every winter. You WILL be addicted!!

Your rod should work fine. I know a couple who use that same one and have no problems.

I don't bring my Shimano Stradics and Symetre reels with. It seems like those expensive reels have too tight of tolerances and quit working in the cold. Almost any reel will work at 0 or 10 degrees, but that is a warm day up there. -20 to -30 is not uncommon at all, and you will probably lose the anti-reverse on your good reels at those temps. I bought a cheap Diawa Crossfire and it seems to work well for me. As for line I usually spool up with 12 pound P-Line. It's been my favorite so far of anything I've tried. As for tackle, I bring up a package of 4" white-glow tubes, a couple 5/16 ounce tube jig hooks, and a few good swivels. That's it. No need to make it more complicated. We've tried just about everything up there, and day in and day out a tube is hard to beat.

Good luck, you WILL be hooked!! Be sure to post a report!

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I agree on the Symetre. I've got a whole cadre of $40 and up Shimanos, and for some reason when it hits about -10 the drag on the Symetre gets really touchy, and just a bump sends of from too loose to too tight, or vice versa.

I suppose it being designed as an open water reel and all . . . confused

It's the only one of my Shimanos that acts the way in the intense cold. And it's my favorite one! shocked

So far no issues with the anti reverse on any of the Shimanos in -15 and colder. Fingers crossed!

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How about jigging action? I know I've heard guys will fish for them half way down in deep water, ripping baits through the water column.

When a fish shows up, do you keep ripping? Do you slow down and finesse? Just want to make sure that when the first few Lakers show up I don't mess it up:)

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I tend to reel up fairly slowly and quickly/tightly shake the rod tip when one shows up. Like others have said it happens very fast when they hit the flasher. I do what I do without thinking at this point. If they don't hit on the first pass then I go back to and stick with an aggressive jigging style. Some days they like it more aggressive and some days not so much. I would try and pull up some you tube videos of guys fishing lakers and see how they work it just before setting the hook.

I start jigging about 1/3 of the way off the bottom. Problem is I'm typically fishing a sharp drop off so what looks like the bottom on the flasher may actually be 10-20 feet below that.

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Usually I drop to the bottom , give it a dozen or so good rips, reel up a few feet, and repeat until I'm right under the ice. Then I drop down and repeat. They can be anywhere. I would say I catch the most about 25 or 30' down in 45-60 FOW, although I've caught them in as shallow as 8 feet of water. On my last trip I drilled a hold and dropped my tube down. It quit falling when it got to the bottom of the hole. I thought I snagged the ice, but a 27" laker hit it RIGHT under the ice. I fought and released it and dropped the jig down and when it got about 30' down one raced up and grabbed it. I landed and released that one. 10 minutes later I caught one when it hit about 12" off the bottom, in 65' of water. All of these out of the same hole in less than 15 minutes.

When I see a fish on the flasher I keep jigging as normal, with big rips. Keep in mind this fish is usually going 100 mph at the jig. Right when the fish looks like it's going to nail the jig, I give it an even bigger rip to make sure the trout misses. 90% of the time it will hit the jig on the drop after that last rip. If it doesn't, I like to bomb it down past them, and then rip it back up above them. Really make them mad. This is just how I do it. My dad is a little more subtle with his technique. Both of us catch the same number of fish over the long run. Both of us do very well.

Keep in mind, I have never fished LOTW for lakers so I don't know if they act the same way in there. I fish the same group of 20 or 30 lakes and it works on all of them. I am not ALL that far from LOTW, but they are smaller bodies of water.

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The most important thing to remember is that lake trout are hard wired to pursue.

If you have a laker coming up after your lure, make it chase it. You don't know if that fish is on fire, semi hot, neutral or negative, because most days lakers will chase to some degree even if they aren't "on."

So if you let that trout slow down or stop when it comes up under your lure, you've already given youself a taller hill to climb, and in many cases that neutral/negative fish will not hang around because you've wasted the single prime opportunity you've gotten.

An aggressive fish will hit no matter what you do. Neutral and, in some cases, even negative lakers will overtake a fleeing lure and hit it.

Reel away, reel away, reel away, Dixieland! wink

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Brotha’ you got that right.   Actually I’m cooking hobos over the campfire in Ely right now.  Not a bad second fiddle.   I won’t be a cooking hobo in a blind this weekend. 
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    • NORTHWEST IOWA FISHING REPORTS Arrowhead Lake
      Bluegill - Fair: As water continues to warm, look for bluegill nest colonies along the west and east shorelines; the highest concentration are likely in the southern end of the lake. Use a small tube jig tipped with a piece of crawler. Black Hawk Lake
      Water temperatures are around 70 degrees. Water clarity is 5-6 feet. Bluegill - Fair: Fish for bluegill just about anywhere along the shoreline. The fish average 7-8 inches. Use a small hair or tube jig with a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber off the floating fishing pier, the west stone pier, and the inlet bridge. Look for bluegills to start moving closer to shore, sitting on nests; you can easily target the males. Walleye - Fair: Anglers are picking up walleye from shore and by boat. Town Bay, the shoreline along Ice House Point, and near the inlet bridge are producing fish. Use leeches fished under a bobber and twisters on the downwind shoreline where walleye are feeding. Black Crappie - Slow: Anglers are still picking up fish from Ice House Point, the floating dock, the stone piers, and the inlet bridge. Catch fish up to 11 inches with crawlers and leeches fished under a bobber. Largemouth Bass - Good: Catch largemouth all over the lake using the traditional bass lures. Many anglers have found good bass action at the Ice House Point, the east shoreline,and the lake side of the inlet bridge.  Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)
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      Water temperature is around 70 degrees. Water clarity is 3 feet. Bluegill - Fair: Use a small jig tipped with crawler along the dam and off the jetties. Most of the fish are 6-7 inches. Look for fish to move closer to shore and the males sitting on nests. Yellow Smoke Park Lake
      Bluegill - Fair: Find bluegill spawning in the arm north of the swim beach and in the coves along the south shore. Yellow Smoke is known for its big bluegill consistently reaching 9 inches or more.  Water temperatures in Black Hawk District lakes are around 70 degrees. Bluegill are starting to move close to shore in many lakes and ponds. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638. Clear Lake
      Surface water temperature is 67 degrees. Black Crappie - Good: Crappies are biting. Use a small jig or a minnow in the rush beds and areas with vegetation. Walleye - Good: Try a slip bobber and leeches fished in the rocky reefs. Yellow Bass - Fair: Yellows bass are on the rocky areas to spawn. Use a small jig in the early morning. Channel Catfish - Fair: With recent rains, any spot where water is entering the lake is worth trying for catfish. Fish a dead chub or crawlers on the bottom. The best bite is late evening.  Crystal Lake
      Channel Catfish - Fair: Use nightcrawlers fished from shore. Walleye – Slow. Black Bullhead - Fair: Try nightcrawlers fished from shore. Bluegill – Slow: Bluegill are biting. Use a small piece of crawler and a bobber in 2 to 3 feet of water.  Lake Smith
      Largemouth Bass - Good: Largemouth bass are biting on a variety of baits. Bluegill – Fair. Rice Lake
      Largemouth Bass - Fair: Bass are biting on plastic baits. Bluegill - Fair: Use a small piece of crawler and a bobber in the edge of the vegetation.  Silver Lake (Worth)
      Largemouth Bass - Good: Largemouth bass are biting on plastic baits. Bluegill - Fair: Use a small piece of crawler and a bobber in 2 to 3 feet of water.  For information on the lakes and rivers in the north central area, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.  Center Lake
      Black Crappie - Fair: Cast mini jigs in shallow water wood habitat.  East Okoboji Lake
      Channel Catfish - Good: Use traditional baits in the evening. Black Crappie - Fair: Anglers report a panfish bite of bluegill and crappie from docks; sorting is needed. Walleye - Good: Report of anglers catching fish from the south end; best bite during the evening hours.  Five Island Lake
      Channel Catfish - Good: Use traditional baits during evening hours. Walleye - Fair: Action is picking up with numbers of angler acceptable size and larger being caught.  Lost Island Lake
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      Northern Pike - Fair: Use casting spoons below the spillway.  West Okoboji Lake
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    • NORTHEAST IOWA FISHING REPORTS Cedar River (above Nashua)
      Water levels continue to fall and clarity is improving. Baring more rain, water levels should stabilize. Water temperatures are in the mid 60's. Visit the USGS Current Water Data website for current water level information. Walleye - Good: Bite improves toward evening. Use a jig tipped with a crawler, minnow or twister tail. Channel Catfish - Good: Catch catfish in the impoundments with dead chubs fished on bottom. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Use a variety of jigs or spinners near brush piles. Black Crappie - Fair: Crappie are keying into shallow rocky shorelines. Use small jigs tipped with twister tail or minnow. Bluegill – Fair.  Decorah District Streams
      Trout streams are in good condition, but flows remain elevated. Family friendly locations abound. A light spinning rod/reel combo is a perfect set up for beginning trout anglers. Catchable trout are stocked weekly as weather and water conditions permit. Listen to the trout stocking hotline (563-927-5736) for daily plans. Area trout stream clarity is greatly improved. Flows remain elevated. Brook Trout - Good: A variety of insects are hatching. Match the hatch, but try not to spook a feeding fish.  Brown Trout - Good: Blue wing olive, midge, and stonefly hatches are occurring; some exceptional lately. Use blue wing olive, hendrickson, gnat, or beadhead nymph patterns and watch the water boil.  Rainbow Trout - Excellent: Try a piece of worm or small cheese chunk under a bobber in the deeper holes or floated past an undercut bank. A variety of small spinnerbaits also work. Lake Hendricks
      Excellent shoreline access; aquatic vegetation is relatively low. Black Crappie - Good: Use small jigs in shallow areas. Largemouth Bass - Good: Fish along edges of vegetation for a cruising bass. Channel Catfish - Fair:  Use a worm or smashed minnow along a windblown shoreline. Bluegill - Fair: Try a small jig tipped with small piece of worm along the shoreline.  Lake Meyer
      Perfect time to enjoy being on the water with family. Lake Meyer is fishing well. Bluegill - Excellent: Use a hook tipped with a worm in shallow water. Black Crappie - Excellent: Try a hook tipped with a worm or small spinner bait along a rocky shoreline. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Jigs tipped with a variety of plastics or a jerk bait catch bass; fish shallow bays for best luck. Northern Pike - Fair: Use a nightcrawler fished along the shallow weedy bays.  Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)
      Water clarity is much improved. Water temperatures are in the low 60's. Water levels are falling. Flows remain up. Use care when paddling as strainers and snags may have moved. Walleye - Good: Bring an assortment of tackle to find what works best for your location and time of day. White Sucker - Excellent: Use worms fished on bottom.  Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)
      Water levels are falling baring additional rainfall this weekend. Clarity is excellent. Use care when paddling. Flows remain elevated. Submersed hazards increase with falling water levels. Visit the USGS Current Water Data website for more information. Walleye - Good: Cast bright colored jigs and twister tails near undercut banks and log jams. Best fishing is toward dusk. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Use spinners around tributaries. Light colored jigs and crankbaits work best. Fish 10-12 inches common. White Sucker - Good: Worms fished off the bottom work for a hungry sucker.  Volga Lake
      Many water related activities available in the Volga River Recreation area. Explore the park. Water temperatures are in the mid 60's. Black Crappie - Good: Shallow, rocky, warmer areas are more productive. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use a jerkbait in shallow water with a slow retrieve. Channel Catfish - Good: Find catfish shallow in evening. Use worm or smashed minnow fished on the bottom. Bluegill - Good: Find gills along shallow rocky areas. Use small jigs tipped with a small piece of worm.  Area rivers and streams continue to improve. Summer is coming early to northeast Iowa; temperatures in the upper 80s for highs to mid 60's for lows and very humid. Rain potential present daily. For current fishing information, please call the Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.   Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)
      Reports of anglers catching largemouth bass and bluegill. Largemouth Bass - Good: Try topwater spinner baits or sinking plastic baits. Bluegill - Excellent: Use a piece of worm under a bobber. Cast out and retrieve slowly over bluegill spawning beds. Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
      There have been a few reports of anglers catching catfish on the Cedar River, but the river remains high yet. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try dead cutbaits or stinkbait fished on the bottom.  Maquoketa River (above Monticello)
      Reports of anglers catching walleye, smallmouth bass and channel catfish. Walleye - Fair: Cast and retrieve a jig with plastics tipped with a minnow. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Cast and retrieve a jig with plastics tipped with a minnow. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try cut bait, nightcrawler or stinkbait fished on the bottom.  Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock)
      No fishing reports for this week.  South Prairie Lake
      Anglers are starting to catch bluegill and crappie. Bluegill - Fair: Try fishing a piece of worm under a slip bobber near vegetation. Black Crappie - Fair: Cast colored tube jigs or fish a minnow under a slip bobber 3 to 6 feet down near vegetation.  Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)
      No reports on the Wapsipinicon River as the river continues to stay high and muddy.  Fishing reports have been good on most interior rivers and area lakes for most all gamefish. Trout stream stockings continue and streams remain in good condition. Call the N.E. Iowa district office at 563-927-3276 for more information.   MISSISSIPPI RIVER Mississippi River Pool 9
      River level is 9.4 feet at Lansing. Water temperature is near 66 degrees. New Albin ramp road is expected to reopen this week. The Lansing Village Creek ramp and parking lot will be closed for construction starting July 5th. For more updates, call the Guttenberg Fisheries Management office at 563-252-1156. Walleye - Fair: Expect walleye to settle in on the closing dams and wing dams as the river falls and stabilizes in the next week or two. Yellow Perch - Fair: Still a few perch biting along the rocky shorelines and tailwater areas. Sauger - Fair: Try a lightweight jig tipped with minnow fished on the bottom along main channel edges and wing dams. Northern Pike - Fair: Northern are feeding along main channel borders. Cast spinners or a minnow along edges of debris piles. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Expect the flatheads to be on the feed as they enter the spawning period. Fish deeper holes with a large shiner or sunfish. Channel Catfish - Good: Use a crawler fished on the bottom. Common Carp - Good: Carp are on the move with the high water. To hook into a big one, try fishing the warm shallow backwaters where carp are staging for the spawn. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth are biting on topwaters and crankbaits in warm shallow bays and marina areas out of the current. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Warm water temperatures and slowly receding flood waters will have smallmouth working the rocky shorelines. Toss inline spinners along rock points. White Bass - Fair: Cast flashy spinners or crankbaits along the rocks in main channel current for big white bass. Black Crappie - Fair: Try small jigs or a plain hook tipped with a crappie minnow along the trees in backwater lakes.  Mississippi River Pool 10
      River level at Lynxville has fallen to 19.3 feet with a steady fall to 17 feet expected next week. Gates remain raised at the Lock and Dam. Water temperature is 66 degrees. Walleye- Slow: Expect walleye to settle in on the closing dams and wing dams as the river falls and stabilizes in the next week or two. Yellow Perch - Fair: Still a few perch biting along the rocky shorelines and tailwater areas. Sauger - Fair: Try a lightweight jig tipped with minnow fished on the bottom along main channel edges and wing dams. Northern Pike -  Fair: Northern are feeding along main channel borders. Cast spinners or a minnow along edges of debris piles. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Expect the flatheads to be on the feed as they enter the spawning period. Fish deeper holes with a large shiner or sunfish. Channel Catfish - Good: Use a crawler fished on the bottom. Bluegill - Good: Panfish bite is picking up this week. Try a small piece of garden worm on small tackle under a bobber. Common Carp - Good: Carp are on the move with the high water. To hook into a big one, try fishing the warm shallow backwaters where carp are staging for the spawn. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth are biting on topwaters and crankbaits in warm shallow bays and marina areas out of the current. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Warm water temperatures and slowly receding flood waters will have smallmouth working the rocky shorelines. Toss inline spinners along rock points. White Bass - Fair: Cast flashy spinners or crankbaits along the rocks in main channel current for big white bass. Black Crappie - Fair: Try small jigs or a plain hook tipped with a crappie minnow along the trees in backwater lakes. Mississippi River Pool 11
      River level at Guttenberg has receded several feet this week at 10.9 feet with predictions to reach 9 feet late next week. The gates remain up at the Lock and Dam. Water temperature is 61 degrees at the dam. Walleye - No Report: Expect walleye to settle in on the closing dams and wing dams as the river falls and stabilizes in the next week or two. Yellow Perch - Fair: Still a few perch biting along the rocky shorelines and tailwater areas. Sauger - Fair: Try a lightweight jig tipped with minnow fished on the bottom along main channel edges and wing dams. Northern Pike - Fair: Northern are feeding along main channel borders. Cast spinners or a minnow along edges of debris piles. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Expect the flatheads to be on the feed as they enter the spawning period. Fish deeper holes with a large shiner or sunfish. Channel Catfish - Good: Use a crawler fished on the bottom. Common Carp - Good: Carp are on the move with the high water. Try fishing the warm shallow backwaters where carp are staging for the spawn. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth are biting on topwaters and crankbaits in warm shallow bays and marina areas out of the current. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Warm water temperatures and slowly receding flood waters will have smallmouth working the rocky shorelines. Toss inline spinners along rock points. White Bass - Fair: Cast flashy spinners or crankbaits along the rocks in main channel current for big white bass. Black Crappie - Good: Fish small jigs or a plain hook tipped with a crappie minnow along the trees in backwater lakes.  The Upper Mississippi River levels are on a steady decline this week. Warmer water temperatures in the upper 60's have many species of fish active. Use caution at ramps to avoid remaining mud and flood debris. Mississippi River Pool 12
      Water levels are 11.3 feet at the Dubuque Lock and 13.5 feet at the RR Bridge. The flooding is over and the river is dropping fast. The channel water temperature is around 64 degrees. White Bass - Fair: Some white bass are biting on spinners. Common Carp - Fair: Conditions for bowfishing carp in shallow flooded areas look good. Find carp and other rough fish thrashing about on hot sunny days. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Both channel cat and flatheads like flooded water. Fish worms in shallow water near shore along freshly flooded banks. Bluegill - Fair: Reports of some bluegills being caught on worms in near shore flooded areas. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Fishing for smallies along rock current lines is getting to be real productive.  Mississippi River Pool 13
      Water levels at Bellevue are 12.7 feet and are dropping fast. Bellevue is presently out of flood action stage. The Bellevue City ramp is available for use, but the DNR ramp is being cleaned but may have debris on it. The channel water temperature is around 65 degrees. Largemouth Bass - Excellent: Anglers are after large bass in the big flooded expanses of some of Pool 13’s largest backwater complexes such as Spring Lake and Browns Lake. Some bass are being caught out of Middle Sabula Lake and Green Island. Common Carp - Excellent: Conditions for bowfishing carp in shallow flooded areas are perfect. Find carp and other rough fish thrashing about on hot sunny days in Green Island and Middle Sabula Lakes. Please take fish with you; don’t leave them on the bank. Channel Catfish - Fair: Anglers will start to target channel cats along rock lines soon as they begin to spawn.  Mississippi River Pool 14
      Water levels are cresting 12.6 feet at Fulton, 15 feet at Camanche and 8.9 feet at LeClaire. Levels are dropping fast. The water temperature is around 67 degrees. Some ramps may still have debris on them. Largemouth Bass - No Report: Flooding made access to bass fishing difficult last week, but fishing for bass should really pick up the next few weeks. Common Carp - No Report: Conditions for bowfishing carp in shallow flooded areas look good. Find carp and other rough fish thrashing about on hot sunny days. Channel Catfish - No Report: Fish worms near the shore as catfish feed along newly flooded shorelines. 
    • SOUTHEAST Big Hollow Lake
      Water temperature are up to the mid 70's. Water clarity is good. Largemouth Bass - Good: Males are on the nests. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are coming in to spawn. Black Crappie - Fair: Crappies finished up a quick spawn and are headed back out deep. Iowa River (Columbus Junction to Mississippi River)
      The Iowa River is dropping at a pretty good rate. Still not many anglers out.   Lake Belva Deer
      Water temperature is in the low 70's. Water is very clear; you can see down to 12 feet. Curlyleaf pondweed is getting pretty thick. Largemouth Bass - Good: Still some spawning males guarding the nests. Also look for them to be over the mounds in deeper water at the upper end of the lake. Black Crappie - Fair: Work the trees back in the bays in 8-10 feet of water. Bluegill - Good: The spawn continues, look for the males to be in shallow; work the holes in the curlyleaf beds.  Lake Darling
      Water temperature remains at 70 degrees. We lost some of our water clarity as the runoff rainwater finally worked its way through all the ponds; still pretty good. Black Crappie - Slow: Crappies have moved out to 6 to 10 feet deep water. Look for them over the rock piles at those depths. Largemouth Bass - Good: Males are on the nest with some even being done with that stage of the spawn. Channel Catfish - Good: Anglers are catching some nice stringers of catfish, mostly with nightcrawlers. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are spawning. Find a good bedding area and you can catch 8 inch bluegills. Anglers continue to catch some nice ones in 5 to 6 feet of water.  Lost Grove Lake
      Water temperature is around 70 degrees; water is very clear (14 feet).  Largemouth Bass - Good: Males are still on the nests. Females are out deep recovering from the spawn. Black Crappie - Fair: Look for them in 6 to 8 feet of water. They seem to be moving from spot to spot. Keep moving if you want to catch crappies. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are in shallow spawning; find a nice quiet bay and you should do well.  Skunk River (Rose Hill to Coppock)
      The Skunk River is dropping pretty fast. A few boats are getting out and catching catfish. Channel Catfish - Fair: Concentrate efforts around the mouths of the feeder creeks. The log jams are good especially later in the morning.  For more information on the above lakes, contact the Lake Darling Fisheries Office at 319-694-2430.   Cedar River (Cedar Rapids to Moscow)
      Channel Catfish – Good. Flathead Catfish – Good. Shovelnose Sturgeon – Good.  Central Park Lake
      The lake is currently drained as a renovation project is finishing up this spring.  Coralville Reservoir
      As of May 24, the lake is at normal summer pool of 683.3 feet. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try cut bait in the channel. Some fish are starting to move to the shallow rocks. White Crappie – Fair: Check brush piles and rock banks for post spawn fish.   Diamond Lake
      No minnows are allowed here. The fish cleaning station is open. Black Crappie - Good: Try small jigs fished around the rock jetties or brush piles. Most fish are 7-9 inches. Pink and black tube jigs have been the hot colors. Bluegill - Excellent: Use small jigs or worms around shallow rock or brush. Many fish are around 7 inches.  Iowa Lake (Iowa County)
      The weeds are thick around the shoreline. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use a frog over the weeds or fish the outside weed line. Bluegill - Fair: Fish right along the shoreline or in pockets of the weeds for spawning fish. Black Crappie - Fair: Fish the weed line or offshore for suspended crappies. Most fish are around 8 inches.  Kent Park Lake
      The lake is currently drained for a lake renovation project currently underway. It is scheduled to be completed next spring.  Lake Macbride
      Water temperatures are around 70 degrees. All boat docks are in and the fish cleaning station at the primitive campground ramp is open.Starting May 25th, only motors under 10hp may be used at no-wake speed. Black Crappie - Fair: Most fish have moved off the bank. Some are on brush and others are suspended out from spawning areas. Walleye - Fair: Cast toward shallow, windblown rocks or troll or jig live bait rigs. Early/late in the day or cloud cover has been best for shallow walleyes. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Cast shallow running crankbaits or flip jigs to shallow cover. Males are shallow and females are staging for the spawn. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair. Bluegill - Good: Use a small jig or worm around shallow cover. Size is marginal at best. Channel Catfish - Fair: Evenings are best.  Otter Creek Lake
      Yellow Bass - Good: Cast small jigs, spinners or live bait to shallow shores. Most fish are around 8 inches. Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs or worms around shallow rock or brush. Most fish are 5-7 inches. Black Crappie - Fair: Bright colored jigs work best.  Pleasant Creek Lake
      The lake is still 7 feet low from the restoration project. The main ramp is usable, but it is shallow; use caution. There is a boat dock in on the east lane. Be cautious when boating as new structures have started to be submerged. Walleye – Fair: Evenings are best in the shallows. Black Crappie - Slow: Some fish are being picked up along shallow rock. Union Grove Lake
      The lake was restocked two years ago following a lake renovation project. Most fish are smaller, but some adult fish were also stocked. Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs or worms in the shallows.  Wapsipinicon River (Troy Mills to Oxford Junction)
      Smallmouth Bass – Good. For more information, contact the Lake Macbride Fisheries Station at 319-624-3615. Hawthorn Lake
      Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use spinnerbaits along the rocky shorelines and rubber worms around the deeper structure. Bluegill - Fair: Try small jigs along the rocky shorelines and around the fishing jetties.  Lake Keomah
      Bluegill - Fair: Use small jigs near shoreline. Try a chunk of nightcrawler if fish get picky. Black Crappie - Fair: Use jigs or minnows around the fishing jetties and the fishing pier.  Lake Sugema
      Walleye - Slow: Use jig and minnow combinations in areas with rip-rapped shorelines. Largemouth Bass - Good: Try spinnerbaits or crankbaits along the fishing jetties and rip-rapped shorelines. Use rubber worms in the same areas as the day warms up. Black Crappie - Slow: Use tube jigs or jig and minnows in deeper water structure. Bluegill - Fair: Try small jigs tipped with live bait around the shorelines and around the aquatic vegetation.  Lake Wapello
      Channel Catfish - Fair: Use liver or nightcrawlers around areas with rip rap. Largemouth Bass - Good: Try spinnerbaits and rubber worms around the cedar tree piles. Bluegill - Fair: Use small jigs tipped with a chunk of nightcrawler.  Rathbun Reservoir
      The current lake level is 904.27 msl. Normal operating elevation is 904.0 msl. Lake Rathbun has zebra mussels, so make sure to properly drain, clean, and dry equipment before transporting to another water body. The water temperature is in the upper 60's. Channel Catfish - Good: Use cut bait or large chubs around areas with rip rap. The rocks around the bridge at the Bridgeview area are a good spot this time of year. White Crappie - Good: Anglers are catching some crappies around the docks at the marina and at the resort. Anglers have had luck in shallow water as well as in 4-10 feet of water. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) - Fair: Anglers are trolling crankbaits along rocky shorelines. Try also using jig and minnow combos along the shoreline. Walleye - Good: Use nightcrawler rigs or crankbaits around rock piles and submerged points.  Red Haw Lake
      Largemouth Bass - Good: Use spinnerbaits or rubber worms in shoreline areas along rip-rapped shorelines. Black Crappie - Fair: Try tube jigs along the shorelines. Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs tipped with live bait around the shorelines and around the aquatic vegetation.  The district includes Mahaska, Lucas, Wayne, Monroe, Appanoose, Wapello, Davis and Van Buren counties. Contact the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406 with questions about fishing in south central Iowa.   Mississippi River Pool 15
      Water levels are moving out of flood action stage at 13 feet at Rock Island. Water levels are dropping fast. The water temperature is near 67 degrees. Some boat ramps will still have debris on them from the recent flood.   River levels are dropping fast and most places are out of flood stages. Water temperatures are in the mid 60's. Many boat ramps are unusable or will have flood debris on them. If you have any angling questions, please contact the Bellevue Fisheries Station 563-872-4976.    Mississippi River Pool 16
      Tailwater stage is 12.40 feet at Lock and Dam 15 in the Quad Cities and is falling. Flood stage is 15 feet. The docks are not in at the Fairport Recreational Area due to the high water. The boat ramps at Clark's Ferry Landing and Shady Creek are closed due to high water. We have not received much for fishing reports due to the high water. Bluegill - Fair: Use worms under a bobber along the shore in Sunset Marina. White Crappie - Fair: Try minnows under a bobber in Sunset Marina. Mississippi River Pool 17
      Tailwater stage is 12.02 feet at Lock and Dam 16 in Muscatine and is falling. Tailwater stage is forcasted to fall to 15 feet by the weekend. Flood stage is 15 feet at Lock and Dam 16.  The Kilpeck Landing and Big Timber Landing are closed due to high water. We have not received much for fishing reports due to the high water.  Mississippi River Pool 18
      Tailwater stage is 13.82 feet at Lock and Dam 17 at New Boston and is falling. Flood stage is 15 feet. The gates are out of the water at the dam. The Toolsboro landing is closed due to high water. The Hawkeye Dolbee access will have water over the parking lot. We have not received any fishing reports for this pool this week.  Mississippi River Pool 19
      Tailwater stage is 10.06 feet at Lock and Dam 18 above Burlington and is falling. Flood stage is 10 feet at Lock and Dam 18. We have not received any fishing reports for this pool this week.  River stages have fallen below flood stage or are at flood stage. Tailwater stages have been falling the past few days. River levels are still high. Main channel water temperature is around 69 degrees. Some boat ramps are closed due to the high water. We have not received much for fishing reports this week. Most fishing reports are coming from inland waters due to the recent high water conditions. If you have questions on fishing Pools 16-19, contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.
    • SOUTHWEST IOWA FISHING REPORTS Beaver Lake
      Black Crappie - Fair: Drift jigs or still fish minnows near the trees mid-lake. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are in the shallow bays on the upper half of the lake between the fishing jetties. They should be easy to target in these areas through May.  Big Creek Lake
      Walleye - Good: Walleyes are being caught throughout the lake in 10 to 15 feet of water. Mid lake out from the beach, marina and East boat ramp have been popular.
      Use jig and twistertails, jig and minnow, slow trolling minnow or leech rigs and trolling crankbaits. Black Crappie - Fair: Crappies have moved away from shore and are being caught over brushpiles in 10 to 15 feet of water with minnows under a slip bobber or drifting jigs with white or chartreuse twistertails or minnows. Don Williams Lake
      Black Crappie - Fair: Crappies are being caught slowly troll or drift small twister tails or minnows throughout the lake. Expect to fish through some 5-7 inch fish for the 9-10 inchers.  Fort Des Moines Pond
      Bluegill - Good: Nice size bluegill are being caught casting small panfish plastics or bobber fishing crawlers.  Lake Ahquabi
      Bluegill - Excellent: Bluegill have moved close to shore. Cast small jigs or little pieces of crawler in areas near shore that have slightly murky water compared to the otherwise very clear water right now.  Red Rock Reservoir
      Black Crappie - Good: Use live minnows next to any flooded vegetation or willows. Try also the rip-rap shorelines near the bridge on the Teter Creek arm and Marina Cove.  Rock Creek Lake
      White Crappie - Fair: Crappies have moved off spawning areas. Drift or slowly troll jigs or minnows in the lower portion of the lake between the beach and dam.  The crappie spawn is mostly finished in Central Iowa. Bluegill fishing is excellent right now. For more information on Central Iowa lakes and rivers, contact Andy Otting or Ben Dodd at 515-432-2823.   Cold Springs District Farm Ponds
      Anglers report excellent fishing in ponds right now. Always get permission to fish privately owned ponds. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are spawning and are close to shore in most ponds. Black Crappie - Fair: You can still catch spawning crappie. Find colonies of nesting fish by casting jigs close to shore. Largemouth Bass - Good: As the water temperature warms, bass become very active and can be caught with a variety of lures and plugs. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try along weed edges and around structure.  Cold Springs Lake
      The fish population at Cold Springs looks good. There is an 18 inch minimum length limit on largemouth bass. Bluegill - Good: Cast a small jig tipped with crawler under a bobber to catch bluegill up to 9 inches. Black Crappie - Fair: A few black crappie are being caught around the underwater rock piles. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Catch bass around the shoreline with a variety of spinners and lures. Redear Sunfish - Fair: Redear are on their beds spawning. Catch fish up to 10 inches with nightcrawlers under a bobber.  Farm Creek Lake
      Farm creek will offer good fishing this year. Bluegill should be spawning and close to shore. Black Crappie - No Report: Black crappie in Farm Creek are quality size fish. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are spawning and close to shore. Cast the shoreline with small jigs and move often to find fish.  Lake Anita
      Bluegills are being picked up close to shore. Anglers can still find late spawning crappie. Black Crappie - Fair: Cast around rocky shorelines and the jetties to find late spawning crappie. Fish will average 9 inches. Move to deeper tree piles to find post spawn fish. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are moving in to spawn. Fish underwater reefs and sandy substrates to find fish up to 9 inches. Largemouth Bass - Good: Cast to structure to catch bass of all sizes.  Lake Manawa
      White crappies can still be caught close to shore with small jigs. Lake Manawa is also a good destination for channel catfish. White Crappie - Fair: White crappies are close to shore. Move often if you are not catching fish. Concentrate on rocky shorelines like the west shore and canals. Channel Catfish - Fair: Fish the windy shoreline with shad sides or cut bait. Channel catfish in Manawa are all sizes.  Meadow Lake
      Meadow has a good population of 10 inch black crappie. Black Crappie - Fair: Look for post spawn crappie around underwater reefs and tree piles. Fish will average 10 inches. Bluegill - Good: Bluegill have moved on the underwater reefs to spawn. Cast small jigs for fish averaging 8 inches. Mormon Trail Lake
      Anglers report good crappie fishing around the jetties. Black Crappie - Good: Cast small jigs around the jetties and dam to find spawning crappie. Fish will average 9 inches.  Prairie Rose Lake
      Prairie Rose will offer good panfishing. The lake has quality sized bluegills and acceptable size crappies. Target the spawning beds, underwater reefs and jetties to find spawning fish. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are spawning and can be caught on top of underwater reefs and on the spawning substrate placed in the lake. Bluegills in Prairie Rose are quality size fish. Black Crappie - Fair: Spawning crappies can still be caught around the jetties and rocky shorelines. Fish will average 9 inches. Largemouth Bass - Good: There is a large population of 12 inch bass in the lake that offers fun catch and release fishing.  Viking Lake
      Concentrate on deeper brush piles to find crappie. Anglers are still catching spawning crappies around underwater reefs and rocky shorelines. A few bass are being caught in the deeper brush piles. Black Crappie - Fair: Crappies are beginning to be caught in the deeper tree piles. Sorting is needed for larger fish. White Crappie - Fair: Boat anglers are finding white crappies along the dam and deeper tree piles. Fish will average 12 inches. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Jig plastics in deeper brush piles during the day and cast shallow structure early morning for largemouth bass of all sizes.  Crappie spawn is winding down and bluegills have moved close to shore.For more information, contact the Cold Springs office at 712-769-2587.   Green Valley Lake
      Largemouth Bass - Good: Catch largemouth bass up to 18 inches with jigs fished along cedar tree brush piles or along the silt dams. Bluegill - Good: Catch bluegill up to 8.5 inches with jigs or nightcrawlers fished along the fishing jetties or fishing piers.  Lake Icaria
      Black Crappie - Fair: Catch crappie up to 10 inches with jigs or minnows fished along rocky shoreline areas or cedar tree brush piles. Walleye - Good: Walleye of all sizes have been caught using jigs or minnows fished along the roadbed or trolling along mainlake points. Channel Catfish - Good: Channel catfish of all sizes have been caught using nightcrawlers fished along main lake points.  Lake of Three Fires
      Largemouth Bass - Fair: Catch largemouth bass up to 18 inches with jigs fished along rocky shoreline areas or cedar tree brush piles.  Little River Watershed Lake
      Walleye - Fair: Catch walleyes up to 22 inches with jigs tipped with a minnow or leech
      fished along mainlake points or the roadbed. Largemouth Bass - Good: Catch largemouth bass up to 18 inches using jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles. Black Crappie - Fair: Catch crappies up to 14 inches with minnows fished along cedar tree brush piles. Bluegill - Good: Catch bluegills up to 9 inches using jigs tipped with a waxworm or leaf worms fished along cedar tree brush piles or the fishing jetties. Channel Catfish - Good: Catch channel catfish up to 10 pounds with nightcrawlers fished along main lake points.  Summit Lake
      Bluegill - Good: Bluegill up to 9 inches have been caught using jigs or nightcrawlers fished along shallow sandy areas.  Three Mile Lake
      Walleye - Good: Catch walleyes up to 17 inches with jigs tipped with a minnow fished along the dam. Twelve Mile Creek Lake
      Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth bass of all sizes have been caught with jigs fished along cedar tree brush piles. Black Crappie - Good: Catch crappies up to 10 inches using jigs or minnows fished in the flooded timber. Bluegill - Good: Catch bluegill up to 8.5 inches with jigs tipped with a waxworm fished along the fishing jetties or flooded timpber. Walleye - Slow: Catch walleyes up to 20 inches using jigs tipped with a minnow fished along the roadbed.  Water temperature in most district lakes is in the lower 70's. For more information, please call the Mount Ayr Fisheries office at 641-464-3108.   MISSOURI RIVER Missouri River (Sioux City to Little Sioux)
      Channel Catfish - Slow: A few anglers are catching catfish on worms and cut bait below wing dams and along the banks. Sauger - Fair: Spring is a good time to catch sauger and walleye on the Missouri. Use jigs tipped with minnows or worms below wing dams or where tributary streams or rivers come into the Missouri River. Shovelnose sturgeon - Good: Anglers are catching shovelnose sturgeon on live bait rigs tipped with worms. Freshwater Drum - Fair: Try using live bait rigs or jigs tipped with worms along the bank and around tributary stream or rivers where they join the Missouri River. Blue Catfish - No Report: Spring can be a great time to catch some big blue catfish. Use fresh cutbait with live bait rigs along wing dam tips or in or close to the main channel of the Missouri River.  Missouri River (Little Sioux to Council Bluffs)
      Channel Catfish - Fair: A few anglers are catching catfish on worms and cut bait below wing dams and along the banks. Sauger - Fair: Spring is a good time to catch sauger and walleye on the Missouri. Use jigs tipped with minnows or worms below wing dams or where tributary streams or rivers come into the Missouri River. Shovelnose sturgeon - Good: Anglers are catching shovelnose sturgeon on live bait rigs tipped with worms. Freshwater Drum - Fair: Try using live bait rigs or jigs tipped with worms along the bank and around tributary stream or rivers where they join the Missouri River. Blue Catfish - No Report: Spring can be a great time to catch some big blue catfish. Use fresh cutbait with live bait rigs along wing dam tips or in or close to the main channel of the Missouri River.  Missouri River (Council Bluffs to Missouri State Line)
      Channel Catfish - Fair: A few anglers are catching catfish on worms and cut bait below wing dams and along the banks. Sauger - Slow: Spring is a good time to catch sauger and walleye on the Missouri. Use jigs tipped with minnows or worms below wing dams or where tributary streams or rivers come into the Missouri River. Shovelnose sturgeon - Good: Anglers are catching shovelnose sturgeon on live bait rigs tipped with worms. Freshwater Drum - Fair: Try using live bait rigs or jigs tipped with worms along the bank and around tributary stream or rivers where they join the Missouri River. Blue Catfish - Fair: Anglers are catching a few blue catfish on with fresh cutbait. Try by the wing dam tips, close to or in the main channel of the Missouri River for your best chance at getting bigger blue catfish.  The Missouri River at Decatur, Nebraska is at 25.67 ft. /50,300 cfs./64 degrees. Missouri River water temperatures are up 3 degrees and water levels are down 1.12 feet from last week. Fishing continues to be slow with few anglers out with the higher water conditions we are currently having on the Missouri River along the Iowa border. The Army Corps of Engineers is releasing water from Gavin's Point Dam due to snow melt from up North, which has contributed to higher water conditions.
    • NORTHWEST Arrowhead Lake
      Bluegill - Fair: As water continues to warm, look for bluegill nest colonies along the west and east shorelines; the highest concentration are likely in the southern end of the lake. Use a small tube jig tipped with a piece of crawler. Black Hawk Lake
      Water temperatures are around 70 degrees. Water clarity is 5-6 feet. Bluegill - Fair: Fish for bluegill just about anywhere along the shoreline. The fish average 7-8 inches. Use a small hair or tube jig with a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber off the floating fishing pier, the west stone pier, and the inlet bridge. Look for bluegills to start moving closer to shore, sitting on nests; you can easily target the males. Walleye - Fair: Anglers are picking up walleye from shore and by boat. Town Bay, the shoreline along Ice House Point, and near the inlet bridge are producing fish. Use leeches fished under a bobber and twisters on the downwind shoreline where walleye are feeding. Black Crappie - Slow: Anglers are still picking up fish from Ice House Point, the floating dock, the stone piers, and the inlet bridge. Catch fish up to 11 inches with crawlers and leeches fished under a bobber. Largemouth Bass - Good: Catch largemouth all over the lake using the traditional bass lures. Many anglers have found good bass action at the Ice House Point, the east shoreline,and the lake side of the inlet bridge.  Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)
      Water clarity is 3-4 feet. Storm Lake has a daily limit of 3 walleye and all 17- to 22-inch walleye must be released; no more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Walleye - Fair: Much of the walleye action has shifted to the boat anglers. Boat anglers are doing well trolling shad raps or ripple shads or drifting crawler harnesses on the edges of the dredge cuts around the lake in about 8 feet of water. Black Crappie - Fair: Anglers are picking up suspended crappie out mid-lake in the dredge cuts while fishing for walleye. White Bass - Fair: Use crankbaits; most action has been from boat while fishing dredge cuts.  Swan Lake
      Water temperature is around 70 degrees. Water clarity is 3 feet. Bluegill - Fair: Use a small jig tipped with crawler along the dam and off the jetties. Most of the fish are 6-7 inches. Look for fish to move closer to shore and the males sitting on nests. Yellow Smoke Park Lake
      Bluegill - Fair: Find bluegill spawning in the arm north of the swim beach and in the coves along the south shore. Yellow Smoke is known for its big bluegill consistently reaching 9 inches or more.  Water temperatures in Black Hawk District lakes are around 70 degrees. Bluegill are starting to move close to shore in many lakes and ponds. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638. Clear Lake
      Surface water temperature is 67 degrees. Black Crappie - Good: Crappies are biting. Use a small jig or a minnow in the rush beds and areas with vegetation. Walleye - Good: Try a slip bobber and leeches fished in the rocky reefs. Yellow Bass - Fair: Yellows bass are on the rocky areas to spawn. Use a small jig in the early morning. Channel Catfish - Fair: With recent rains, any spot where water is entering the lake is worth trying for catfish. Fish a dead chub or crawlers on the bottom. The best bite is late evening.  Crystal Lake
      Channel Catfish - Fair: Use nightcrawlers fished from shore. Walleye – Slow. Black Bullhead - Fair: Try nightcrawlers fished from shore. Bluegill – Slow: Bluegill are biting. Use a small piece of crawler and a bobber in 2 to 3 feet of water.  Lake Smith
      Largemouth Bass - Good: Largemouth bass are biting on a variety of baits. Bluegill – Fair. Rice Lake
      Largemouth Bass - Fair: Bass are biting on plastic baits. Bluegill - Fair: Use a small piece of crawler and a bobber in the edge of the vegetation.  Silver Lake (Worth)
      Largemouth Bass - Good: Largemouth bass are biting on plastic baits. Bluegill - Fair: Use a small piece of crawler and a bobber in 2 to 3 feet of water.  For information on the lakes and rivers in the north central area, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.  Center Lake
      Black Crappie - Fair: Cast mini jigs in shallow water wood habitat.  East Okoboji Lake
      Channel Catfish - Good: Use traditional baits in the evening. Black Crappie - Fair: Anglers report a panfish bite of bluegill and crappie from docks; sorting is needed. Walleye - Good: Report of anglers catching fish from the south end; best bite during the evening hours.  Five Island Lake
      Channel Catfish - Good: Use traditional baits during evening hours. Walleye - Fair: Action is picking up with numbers of angler acceptable size and larger being caught.  Lost Island Lake
      Walleye - Good: Walleye are being caught close to shore. Try fishing from a dock or wader fishing after dark. Black Crappie - Good: Reports of crappie and yellow perch being caught. Yellow Bass - Fair: Report of yellow bass being caught. Use small lures such as a twister tail or hair jigs.  Silver Lake (Palo Alto)
      Walleye - Fair: Report of large fish being caught during the late evening hours. Cast a white twister for the best action. Black Bullhead - Good: Good action reported of angler acceptable sized fish. Yellow Perch - Fair: Some activity reported.  Spirit Lake
      Marble Beach campground, including the boat ramp, is closed for the season for renovation. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Use a jig tipped with a minnow in shallow rock structures. Action is best during sunny, calm days. Black Crappie - Good: Fish the bulrush on the lake for spawning crappie. Cast a mini-jig and swim the bait slowly back to the boat to find active fish. Walleye - Good: Best action is during the night off the docks. Fish leeches under a bobber or cast a twister tail. Black Bullhead - Good: The bite has slowed at the north grade; persistence will be rewarded with good numbers of fish caught. Fish traditional baits on the bottom. Trumbull Lake
      Northern Pike - Fair: Use casting spoons below the spillway.  West Okoboji Lake
      Bluegill - Good: Wooden docks in deeper water and new aquatic growth will produce good numbers of angler acceptable sized fish.  For more information throughout the week, contact the Spirit Lake Fish Hatchery at 712-336-1840.    NORTHEAST Cedar River (above Nashua)
      Water levels continue to fall and clarity is improving. Baring more rain, water levels should stabilize. Water temperatures are in the mid 60's. Visit the USGS Current Water Data website for current water level information. Walleye - Good: Bite improves toward evening. Use a jig tipped with a crawler, minnow or twister tail. Channel Catfish - Good: Catch catfish in the impoundments with dead chubs fished on bottom. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Use a variety of jigs or spinners near brush piles. Black Crappie - Fair: Crappie are keying into shallow rocky shorelines. Use small jigs tipped with twister tail or minnow. Bluegill – Fair.  Decorah District Streams
      Trout streams are in good condition, but flows remain elevated. Family friendly locations abound. A light spinning rod/reel combo is a perfect set up for beginning trout anglers. Catchable trout are stocked weekly as weather and water conditions permit. Listen to the trout stocking hotline (563-927-5736) for daily plans. Area trout stream clarity is greatly improved. Flows remain elevated. Brook Trout - Good: A variety of insects are hatching. Match the hatch, but try not to spook a feeding fish.  Brown Trout - Good: Blue wing olive, midge, and stonefly hatches are occurring; some exceptional lately. Use blue wing olive, hendrickson, gnat, or beadhead nymph patterns and watch the water boil.  Rainbow Trout - Excellent: Try a piece of worm or small cheese chunk under a bobber in the deeper holes or floated past an undercut bank. A variety of small spinnerbaits also work. Lake Hendricks
      Excellent shoreline access; aquatic vegetation is relatively low. Black Crappie - Good: Use small jigs in shallow areas. Largemouth Bass - Good: Fish along edges of vegetation for a cruising bass. Channel Catfish - Fair:  Use a worm or smashed minnow along a windblown shoreline. Bluegill - Fair: Try a small jig tipped with small piece of worm along the shoreline.  Lake Meyer
      Perfect time to enjoy being on the water with family. Lake Meyer is fishing well. Bluegill - Excellent: Use a hook tipped with a worm in shallow water. Black Crappie - Excellent: Try a hook tipped with a worm or small spinner bait along a rocky shoreline. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Jigs tipped with a variety of plastics or a jerk bait catch bass; fish shallow bays for best luck. Northern Pike - Fair: Use a nightcrawler fished along the shallow weedy bays.  Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)
      Water clarity is much improved. Water temperatures are in the low 60's. Water levels are falling. Flows remain up. Use care when paddling as strainers and snags may have moved. Walleye - Good: Bring an assortment of tackle to find what works best for your location and time of day. White Sucker - Excellent: Use worms fished on bottom.  Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)
      Water levels are falling baring additional rainfall this weekend. Clarity is excellent. Use care when paddling. Flows remain elevated. Submersed hazards increase with falling water levels. Visit the USGS Current Water Data website for more information. Walleye - Good: Cast bright colored jigs and twister tails near undercut banks and log jams. Best fishing is toward dusk. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Use spinners around tributaries. Light colored jigs and crankbaits work best. Fish 10-12 inches common. White Sucker - Good: Worms fished off the bottom work for a hungry sucker.  Volga Lake
      Many water related activities available in the Volga River Recreation area. Explore the park. Water temperatures are in the mid 60's. Black Crappie - Good: Shallow, rocky, warmer areas are more productive. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use a jerkbait in shallow water with a slow retrieve. Channel Catfish - Good: Find catfish shallow in evening. Use worm or smashed minnow fished on the bottom. Bluegill - Good: Find gills along shallow rocky areas. Use small jigs tipped with a small piece of worm.  Area rivers and streams continue to improve. Summer is coming early to northeast Iowa; temperatures in the upper 80s for highs to mid 60's for lows and very humid. Rain potential present daily. For current fishing information, please call the Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.   Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)
      Reports of anglers catching largemouth bass and bluegill. Largemouth Bass - Good: Try topwater spinner baits or sinking plastic baits. Bluegill - Excellent: Use a piece of worm under a bobber. Cast out and retrieve slowly over bluegill spawning beds. Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
      There have been a few reports of anglers catching catfish on the Cedar River, but the river remains high yet. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try dead cutbaits or stinkbait fished on the bottom.  Maquoketa River (above Monticello)
      Reports of anglers catching walleye, smallmouth bass and channel catfish. Walleye - Fair: Cast and retrieve a jig with plastics tipped with a minnow. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Cast and retrieve a jig with plastics tipped with a minnow. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try cut bait, nightcrawler or stinkbait fished on the bottom.  Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock)
      No fishing reports for this week.  South Prairie Lake
      Anglers are starting to catch bluegill and crappie. Bluegill - Fair: Try fishing a piece of worm under a slip bobber near vegetation. Black Crappie - Fair: Cast colored tube jigs or fish a minnow under a slip bobber 3 to 6 feet down near vegetation.  Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)
      No reports on the Wapsipinicon River as the river continues to stay high and muddy.  Fishing reports have been good on most interior rivers and area lakes for most all gamefish. Trout stream stockings continue and streams remain in good condition. Call the N.E. Iowa district office at 563-927-3276 for more information.   MISSISSIPPI RIVER Mississippi River Pool 9
      River level is 9.4 feet at Lansing. Water temperature is near 66 degrees. New Albin ramp road is expected to reopen this week. The Lansing Village Creek ramp and parking lot will be closed for construction starting July 5th. For more updates, call the Guttenberg Fisheries Management office at 563-252-1156. Walleye - Fair: Expect walleye to settle in on the closing dams and wing dams as the river falls and stabilizes in the next week or two. Yellow Perch - Fair: Still a few perch biting along the rocky shorelines and tailwater areas. Sauger - Fair: Try a lightweight jig tipped with minnow fished on the bottom along main channel edges and wing dams. Northern Pike - Fair: Northern are feeding along main channel borders. Cast spinners or a minnow along edges of debris piles. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Expect the flatheads to be on the feed as they enter the spawning period. Fish deeper holes with a large shiner or sunfish. Channel Catfish - Good: Use a crawler fished on the bottom. Common Carp - Good: Carp are on the move with the high water. To hook into a big one, try fishing the warm shallow backwaters where carp are staging for the spawn. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth are biting on topwaters and crankbaits in warm shallow bays and marina areas out of the current. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Warm water temperatures and slowly receding flood waters will have smallmouth working the rocky shorelines. Toss inline spinners along rock points. White Bass - Fair: Cast flashy spinners or crankbaits along the rocks in main channel current for big white bass. Black Crappie - Fair: Try small jigs or a plain hook tipped with a crappie minnow along the trees in backwater lakes.  Mississippi River Pool 10
      River level at Lynxville has fallen to 19.3 feet with a steady fall to 17 feet expected next week. Gates remain raised at the Lock and Dam. Water temperature is 66 degrees. Walleye- Slow: Expect walleye to settle in on the closing dams and wing dams as the river falls and stabilizes in the next week or two. Yellow Perch - Fair: Still a few perch biting along the rocky shorelines and tailwater areas. Sauger - Fair: Try a lightweight jig tipped with minnow fished on the bottom along main channel edges and wing dams. Northern Pike -  Fair: Northern are feeding along main channel borders. Cast spinners or a minnow along edges of debris piles. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Expect the flatheads to be on the feed as they enter the spawning period. Fish deeper holes with a large shiner or sunfish. Channel Catfish - Good: Use a crawler fished on the bottom. Bluegill - Good: Panfish bite is picking up this week. Try a small piece of garden worm on small tackle under a bobber. Common Carp - Good: Carp are on the move with the high water. To hook into a big one, try fishing the warm shallow backwaters where carp are staging for the spawn. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth are biting on topwaters and crankbaits in warm shallow bays and marina areas out of the current. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Warm water temperatures and slowly receding flood waters will have smallmouth working the rocky shorelines. Toss inline spinners along rock points. White Bass - Fair: Cast flashy spinners or crankbaits along the rocks in main channel current for big white bass. Black Crappie - Fair: Try small jigs or a plain hook tipped with a crappie minnow along the trees in backwater lakes. Mississippi River Pool 11
      River level at Guttenberg has receded several feet this week at 10.9 feet with predictions to reach 9 feet late next week. The gates remain up at the Lock and Dam. Water temperature is 61 degrees at the dam. Walleye - No Report: Expect walleye to settle in on the closing dams and wing dams as the river falls and stabilizes in the next week or two. Yellow Perch - Fair: Still a few perch biting along the rocky shorelines and tailwater areas. Sauger - Fair: Try a lightweight jig tipped with minnow fished on the bottom along main channel edges and wing dams. Northern Pike - Fair: Northern are feeding along main channel borders. Cast spinners or a minnow along edges of debris piles. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Expect the flatheads to be on the feed as they enter the spawning period. Fish deeper holes with a large shiner or sunfish. Channel Catfish - Good: Use a crawler fished on the bottom. Common Carp - Good: Carp are on the move with the high water. Try fishing the warm shallow backwaters where carp are staging for the spawn. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth are biting on topwaters and crankbaits in warm shallow bays and marina areas out of the current. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Warm water temperatures and slowly receding flood waters will have smallmouth working the rocky shorelines. Toss inline spinners along rock points. White Bass - Fair: Cast flashy spinners or crankbaits along the rocks in main channel current for big white bass. Black Crappie - Good: Fish small jigs or a plain hook tipped with a crappie minnow along the trees in backwater lakes.  The Upper Mississippi River levels are on a steady decline this week. Warmer water temperatures in the upper 60's have many species of fish active. Use caution at ramps to avoid remaining mud and flood debris. Mississippi River Pool 12
      Water levels are 11.3 feet at the Dubuque Lock and 13.5 feet at the RR Bridge. The flooding is over and the river is dropping fast. The channel water temperature is around 64 degrees. White Bass - Fair: Some white bass are biting on spinners. Common Carp - Fair: Conditions for bowfishing carp in shallow flooded areas look good. Find carp and other rough fish thrashing about on hot sunny days. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Both channel cat and flatheads like flooded water. Fish worms in shallow water near shore along freshly flooded banks. Bluegill - Fair: Reports of some bluegills being caught on worms in near shore flooded areas. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Fishing for smallies along rock current lines is getting to be real productive.  Mississippi River Pool 13
      Water levels at Bellevue are 12.7 feet and are dropping fast. Bellevue is presently out of flood action stage. The Bellevue City ramp is available for use, but the DNR ramp is being cleaned but may have debris on it. The channel water temperature is around 65 degrees. Largemouth Bass - Excellent: Anglers are after large bass in the big flooded expanses of some of Pool 13’s largest backwater complexes such as Spring Lake and Browns Lake. Some bass are being caught out of Middle Sabula Lake and Green Island. Common Carp - Excellent: Conditions for bowfishing carp in shallow flooded areas are perfect. Find carp and other rough fish thrashing about on hot sunny days in Green Island and Middle Sabula Lakes. Please take fish with you; don’t leave them on the bank. Channel Catfish - Fair: Anglers will start to target channel cats along rock lines soon as they begin to spawn.  Mississippi River Pool 14
      Water levels are cresting 12.6 feet at Fulton, 15 feet at Camanche and 8.9 feet at LeClaire. Levels are dropping fast. The water temperature is around 67 degrees. Some ramps may still have debris on them. Largemouth Bass - No Report: Flooding made access to bass fishing difficult last week, but fishing for bass should really pick up the next few weeks. Common Carp - No Report: Conditions for bowfishing carp in shallow flooded areas look good. Find carp and other rough fish thrashing about on hot sunny days. Channel Catfish - No Report: Fish worms near the shore as catfish feed along newly flooded shorelines.  Mississippi River Pool 15
      Water levels are moving out of flood action stage at 13 feet at Rock Island. Water levels are dropping fast. The water temperature is near 67 degrees. Some boat ramps will still have debris on them from the recent flood.   River levels are dropping fast and most places are out of flood stages. Water temperatures are in the mid 60's. Many boat ramps are unusable or will have flood debris on them. If you have any angling questions, please contact the Bellevue Fisheries Station 563-872-4976.    Mississippi River Pool 16
      Tailwater stage is 12.40 feet at Lock and Dam 15 in the Quad Cities and is falling. Flood stage is 15 feet. The docks are not in at the Fairport Recreational Area due to the high water. The boat ramps at Clark's Ferry Landing and Shady Creek are closed due to high water. We have not received much for fishing reports due to the high water. Bluegill - Fair: Use worms under a bobber along the shore in Sunset Marina. White Crappie - Fair: Try minnows under a bobber in Sunset Marina. Mississippi River Pool 17
      Tailwater stage is 12.02 feet at Lock and Dam 16 in Muscatine and is falling. Tailwater stage is forcasted to fall to 15 feet by the weekend. Flood stage is 15 feet at Lock and Dam 16.  The Kilpeck Landing and Big Timber Landing are closed due to high water. We have not received much for fishing reports due to the high water.  Mississippi River Pool 18
      Tailwater stage is 13.82 feet at Lock and Dam 17 at New Boston and is falling. Flood stage is 15 feet. The gates are out of the water at the dam. The Toolsboro landing is closed due to high water. The Hawkeye Dolbee access will have water over the parking lot. We have not received any fishing reports for this pool this week.  Mississippi River Pool 19
      Tailwater stage is 10.06 feet at Lock and Dam 18 above Burlington and is falling. Flood stage is 10 feet at Lock and Dam 18. We have not received any fishing reports for this pool this week.  River stages have fallen below flood stage or are at flood stage. Tailwater stages have been falling the past few days. River levels are still high. Main channel water temperature is around 69 degrees. Some boat ramps are closed due to the high water. We have not received much for fishing reports this week. Most fishing reports are coming from inland waters due to the recent high water conditions. If you have questions on fishing Pools 16-19, contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.   SOUTHEAST Big Hollow Lake
      Water temperature are up to the mid 70's. Water clarity is good. Largemouth Bass - Good: Males are on the nests. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are coming in to spawn. Black Crappie - Fair: Crappies finished up a quick spawn and are headed back out deep. Iowa River (Columbus Junction to Mississippi River)
      The Iowa River is dropping at a pretty good rate. Still not many anglers out.   Lake Belva Deer
      Water temperature is in the low 70's. Water is very clear; you can see down to 12 feet. Curlyleaf pondweed is getting pretty thick. Largemouth Bass - Good: Still some spawning males guarding the nests. Also look for them to be over the mounds in deeper water at the upper end of the lake. Black Crappie - Fair: Work the trees back in the bays in 8-10 feet of water. Bluegill - Good: The spawn continues, look for the males to be in shallow; work the holes in the curlyleaf beds.  Lake Darling
      Water temperature remains at 70 degrees. We lost some of our water clarity as the runoff rainwater finally worked its way through all the ponds; still pretty good. Black Crappie - Slow: Crappies have moved out to 6 to 10 feet deep water. Look for them over the rock piles at those depths. Largemouth Bass - Good: Males are on the nest with some even being done with that stage of the spawn. Channel Catfish - Good: Anglers are catching some nice stringers of catfish, mostly with nightcrawlers. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are spawning. Find a good bedding area and you can catch 8 inch bluegills. Anglers continue to catch some nice ones in 5 to 6 feet of water.  Lost Grove Lake
      Water temperature is around 70 degrees; water is very clear (14 feet).  Largemouth Bass - Good: Males are still on the nests. Females are out deep recovering from the spawn. Black Crappie - Fair: Look for them in 6 to 8 feet of water. They seem to be moving from spot to spot. Keep moving if you want to catch crappies. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are in shallow spawning; find a nice quiet bay and you should do well.  Skunk River (Rose Hill to Coppock)
      The Skunk River is dropping pretty fast. A few boats are getting out and catching catfish. Channel Catfish - Fair: Concentrate efforts around the mouths of the feeder creeks. The log jams are good especially later in the morning.  For more information on the above lakes, contact the Lake Darling Fisheries Office at 319-694-2430.   Cedar River (Cedar Rapids to Moscow)
      Channel Catfish – Good. Flathead Catfish – Good. Shovelnose Sturgeon – Good.  Central Park Lake
      The lake is currently drained as a renovation project is finishing up this spring.  Coralville Reservoir
      As of May 24, the lake is at normal summer pool of 683.3 feet. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try cut bait in the channel. Some fish are starting to move to the shallow rocks. White Crappie – Fair: Check brush piles and rock banks for post spawn fish.   Diamond Lake
      No minnows are allowed here. The fish cleaning station is open. Black Crappie - Good: Try small jigs fished around the rock jetties or brush piles. Most fish are 7-9 inches. Pink and black tube jigs have been the hot colors. Bluegill - Excellent: Use small jigs or worms around shallow rock or brush. Many fish are around 7 inches.  Iowa Lake (Iowa County)
      The weeds are thick around the shoreline. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use a frog over the weeds or fish the outside weed line. Bluegill - Fair: Fish right along the shoreline or in pockets of the weeds for spawning fish. Black Crappie - Fair: Fish the weed line or offshore for suspended crappies. Most fish are around 8 inches.  Kent Park Lake
      The lake is currently drained for a lake renovation project currently underway. It is scheduled to be completed next spring.  Lake Macbride
      Water temperatures are around 70 degrees. All boat docks are in and the fish cleaning station at the primitive campground ramp is open.Starting May 25th, only motors under 10hp may be used at no-wake speed. Black Crappie - Fair: Most fish have moved off the bank. Some are on brush and others are suspended out from spawning areas. Walleye - Fair: Cast toward shallow, windblown rocks or troll or jig live bait rigs. Early/late in the day or cloud cover has been best for shallow walleyes. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Cast shallow running crankbaits or flip jigs to shallow cover. Males are shallow and females are staging for the spawn. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair. Bluegill - Good: Use a small jig or worm around shallow cover. Size is marginal at best. Channel Catfish - Fair: Evenings are best.  Otter Creek Lake
      Yellow Bass - Good: Cast small jigs, spinners or live bait to shallow shores. Most fish are around 8 inches. Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs or worms around shallow rock or brush. Most fish are 5-7 inches. Black Crappie - Fair: Bright colored jigs work best.  Pleasant Creek Lake
      The lake is still 7 feet low from the restoration project. The main ramp is usable, but it is shallow; use caution. There is a boat dock in on the east lane. Be cautious when boating as new structures have started to be submerged. Walleye – Fair: Evenings are best in the shallows. Black Crappie - Slow: Some fish are being picked up along shallow rock. Union Grove Lake
      The lake was restocked two years ago following a lake renovation project. Most fish are smaller, but some adult fish were also stocked. Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs or worms in the shallows.  Wapsipinicon River (Troy Mills to Oxford Junction)
      Smallmouth Bass – Good. For more information, contact the Lake Macbride Fisheries Station at 319-624-3615. Hawthorn Lake
      Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use spinnerbaits along the rocky shorelines and rubber worms around the deeper structure. Bluegill - Fair: Try small jigs along the rocky shorelines and around the fishing jetties.  Lake Keomah
      Bluegill - Fair: Use small jigs near shoreline. Try a chunk of nightcrawler if fish get picky. Black Crappie - Fair: Use jigs or minnows around the fishing jetties and the fishing pier.  Lake Sugema
      Walleye - Slow: Use jig and minnow combinations in areas with rip-rapped shorelines. Largemouth Bass - Good: Try spinnerbaits or crankbaits along the fishing jetties and rip-rapped shorelines. Use rubber worms in the same areas as the day warms up. Black Crappie - Slow: Use tube jigs or jig and minnows in deeper water structure. Bluegill - Fair: Try small jigs tipped with live bait around the shorelines and around the aquatic vegetation.  Lake Wapello
      Channel Catfish - Fair: Use liver or nightcrawlers around areas with rip rap. Largemouth Bass - Good: Try spinnerbaits and rubber worms around the cedar tree piles. Bluegill - Fair: Use small jigs tipped with a chunk of nightcrawler.  Rathbun Reservoir
      The current lake level is 904.27 msl. Normal operating elevation is 904.0 msl. Lake Rathbun has zebra mussels, so make sure to properly drain, clean, and dry equipment before transporting to another water body. The water temperature is in the upper 60's. Channel Catfish - Good: Use cut bait or large chubs around areas with rip rap. The rocks around the bridge at the Bridgeview area are a good spot this time of year. White Crappie - Good: Anglers are catching some crappies around the docks at the marina and at the resort. Anglers have had luck in shallow water as well as in 4-10 feet of water. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) - Fair: Anglers are trolling crankbaits along rocky shorelines. Try also using jig and minnow combos along the shoreline. Walleye - Good: Use nightcrawler rigs or crankbaits around rock piles and submerged points.  Red Haw Lake
      Largemouth Bass - Good: Use spinnerbaits or rubber worms in shoreline areas along rip-rapped shorelines. Black Crappie - Fair: Try tube jigs along the shorelines. Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs tipped with live bait around the shorelines and around the aquatic vegetation.  The district includes Mahaska, Lucas, Wayne, Monroe, Appanoose, Wapello, Davis and Van Buren counties. Contact the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406 with questions about fishing in south central Iowa.   SOUTHWEST Beaver Lake
      Black Crappie - Fair: Drift jigs or still fish minnows near the trees mid-lake. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are in the shallow bays on the upper half of the lake between the fishing jetties. They should be easy to target in these areas through May.  Big Creek Lake
      Walleye - Good: Walleyes are being caught throughout the lake in 10 to 15 feet of water. Mid lake out from the beach, marina and East boat ramp have been popular.
      Use jig and twistertails, jig and minnow, slow trolling minnow or leech rigs and trolling crankbaits. Black Crappie - Fair: Crappies have moved away from shore and are being caught over brushpiles in 10 to 15 feet of water with minnows under a slip bobber or drifting jigs with white or chartreuse twistertails or minnows. Don Williams Lake
      Black Crappie - Fair: Crappies are being caught slowly troll or drift small twister tails or minnows throughout the lake. Expect to fish through some 5-7 inch fish for the 9-10 inchers.  Fort Des Moines Pond
      Bluegill - Good: Nice size bluegill are being caught casting small panfish plastics or bobber fishing crawlers.  Lake Ahquabi
      Bluegill - Excellent: Bluegill have moved close to shore. Cast small jigs or little pieces of crawler in areas near shore that have slightly murky water compared to the otherwise very clear water right now.  Red Rock Reservoir
      Black Crappie - Good: Use live minnows next to any flooded vegetation or willows. Try also the rip-rap shorelines near the bridge on the Teter Creek arm and Marina Cove.  Rock Creek Lake
      White Crappie - Fair: Crappies have moved off spawning areas. Drift or slowly troll jigs or minnows in the lower portion of the lake between the beach and dam.  The crappie spawn is mostly finished in Central Iowa. Bluegill fishing is excellent right now. For more information on Central Iowa lakes and rivers, contact Andy Otting or Ben Dodd at 515-432-2823.   Cold Springs District Farm Ponds
      Anglers report excellent fishing in ponds right now. Always get permission to fish privately owned ponds. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are spawning and are close to shore in most ponds. Black Crappie - Fair: You can still catch spawning crappie. Find colonies of nesting fish by casting jigs close to shore. Largemouth Bass - Good: As the water temperature warms, bass become very active and can be caught with a variety of lures and plugs. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try along weed edges and around structure.  Cold Springs Lake
      The fish population at Cold Springs looks good. There is an 18 inch minimum length limit on largemouth bass. Bluegill - Good: Cast a small jig tipped with crawler under a bobber to catch bluegill up to 9 inches. Black Crappie - Fair: A few black crappie are being caught around the underwater rock piles. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Catch bass around the shoreline with a variety of spinners and lures. Redear Sunfish - Fair: Redear are on their beds spawning. Catch fish up to 10 inches with nightcrawlers under a bobber.  Farm Creek Lake
      Farm creek will offer good fishing this year. Bluegill should be spawning and close to shore. Black Crappie - No Report: Black crappie in Farm Creek are quality size fish. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are spawning and close to shore. Cast the shoreline with small jigs and move often to find fish.  Lake Anita
      Bluegills are being picked up close to shore. Anglers can still find late spawning crappie. Black Crappie - Fair: Cast around rocky shorelines and the jetties to find late spawning crappie. Fish will average 9 inches. Move to deeper tree piles to find post spawn fish. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are moving in to spawn. Fish underwater reefs and sandy substrates to find fish up to 9 inches. Largemouth Bass - Good: Cast to structure to catch bass of all sizes.  Lake Manawa
      White crappies can still be caught close to shore with small jigs. Lake Manawa is also a good destination for channel catfish. White Crappie - Fair: White crappies are close to shore. Move often if you are not catching fish. Concentrate on rocky shorelines like the west shore and canals. Channel Catfish - Fair: Fish the windy shoreline with shad sides or cut bait. Channel catfish in Manawa are all sizes.  Meadow Lake
      Meadow has a good population of 10 inch black crappie. Black Crappie - Fair: Look for post spawn crappie around underwater reefs and tree piles. Fish will average 10 inches. Bluegill - Good: Bluegill have moved on the underwater reefs to spawn. Cast small jigs for fish averaging 8 inches. Mormon Trail Lake
      Anglers report good crappie fishing around the jetties. Black Crappie - Good: Cast small jigs around the jetties and dam to find spawning crappie. Fish will average 9 inches.  Prairie Rose Lake
      Prairie Rose will offer good panfishing. The lake has quality sized bluegills and acceptable size crappies. Target the spawning beds, underwater reefs and jetties to find spawning fish. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are spawning and can be caught on top of underwater reefs and on the spawning substrate placed in the lake. Bluegills in Prairie Rose are quality size fish. Black Crappie - Fair: Spawning crappies can still be caught around the jetties and rocky shorelines. Fish will average 9 inches. Largemouth Bass - Good: There is a large population of 12 inch bass in the lake that offers fun catch and release fishing.  Viking Lake
      Concentrate on deeper brush piles to find crappie. Anglers are still catching spawning crappies around underwater reefs and rocky shorelines. A few bass are being caught in the deeper brush piles. Black Crappie - Fair: Crappies are beginning to be caught in the deeper tree piles. Sorting is needed for larger fish. White Crappie - Fair: Boat anglers are finding white crappies along the dam and deeper tree piles. Fish will average 12 inches. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Jig plastics in deeper brush piles during the day and cast shallow structure early morning for largemouth bass of all sizes.  Crappie spawn is winding down and bluegills have moved close to shore.For more information, contact the Cold Springs office at 712-769-2587.   Green Valley Lake
      Largemouth Bass - Good: Catch largemouth bass up to 18 inches with jigs fished along cedar tree brush piles or along the silt dams. Bluegill - Good: Catch bluegill up to 8.5 inches with jigs or nightcrawlers fished along the fishing jetties or fishing piers.  Lake Icaria
      Black Crappie - Fair: Catch crappie up to 10 inches with jigs or minnows fished along rocky shoreline areas or cedar tree brush piles. Walleye - Good: Walleye of all sizes have been caught using jigs or minnows fished along the roadbed or trolling along mainlake points. Channel Catfish - Good: Channel catfish of all sizes have been caught using nightcrawlers fished along main lake points.  Lake of Three Fires
      Largemouth Bass - Fair: Catch largemouth bass up to 18 inches with jigs fished along rocky shoreline areas or cedar tree brush piles.  Little River Watershed Lake
      Walleye - Fair: Catch walleyes up to 22 inches with jigs tipped with a minnow or leech
      fished along mainlake points or the roadbed. Largemouth Bass - Good: Catch largemouth bass up to 18 inches using jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles. Black Crappie - Fair: Catch crappies up to 14 inches with minnows fished along cedar tree brush piles. Bluegill - Good: Catch bluegills up to 9 inches using jigs tipped with a waxworm or leaf worms fished along cedar tree brush piles or the fishing jetties. Channel Catfish - Good: Catch channel catfish up to 10 pounds with nightcrawlers fished along main lake points.  Summit Lake
      Bluegill - Good: Bluegill up to 9 inches have been caught using jigs or nightcrawlers fished along shallow sandy areas.  Three Mile Lake
      Walleye - Good: Catch walleyes up to 17 inches with jigs tipped with a minnow fished along the dam. Twelve Mile Creek Lake
      Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth bass of all sizes have been caught with jigs fished along cedar tree brush piles. Black Crappie - Good: Catch crappies up to 10 inches using jigs or minnows fished in the flooded timber. Bluegill - Good: Catch bluegill up to 8.5 inches with jigs tipped with a waxworm fished along the fishing jetties or flooded timpber. Walleye - Slow: Catch walleyes up to 20 inches using jigs tipped with a minnow fished along the roadbed.  Water temperature in most district lakes is in the lower 70's. For more information, please call the Mount Ayr Fisheries office at 641-464-3108.   MISSOURI RIVER Missouri River (Sioux City to Little Sioux)
      Channel Catfish - Slow: A few anglers are catching catfish on worms and cut bait below wing dams and along the banks. Sauger - Fair: Spring is a good time to catch sauger and walleye on the Missouri. Use jigs tipped with minnows or worms below wing dams or where tributary streams or rivers come into the Missouri River. Shovelnose sturgeon - Good: Anglers are catching shovelnose sturgeon on live bait rigs tipped with worms. Freshwater Drum - Fair: Try using live bait rigs or jigs tipped with worms along the bank and around tributary stream or rivers where they join the Missouri River. Blue Catfish - No Report: Spring can be a great time to catch some big blue catfish. Use fresh cutbait with live bait rigs along wing dam tips or in or close to the main channel of the Missouri River.  Missouri River (Little Sioux to Council Bluffs)
      Channel Catfish - Fair: A few anglers are catching catfish on worms and cut bait below wing dams and along the banks. Sauger - Fair: Spring is a good time to catch sauger and walleye on the Missouri. Use jigs tipped with minnows or worms below wing dams or where tributary streams or rivers come into the Missouri River. Shovelnose sturgeon - Good: Anglers are catching shovelnose sturgeon on live bait rigs tipped with worms. Freshwater Drum - Fair: Try using live bait rigs or jigs tipped with worms along the bank and around tributary stream or rivers where they join the Missouri River. Blue Catfish - No Report: Spring can be a great time to catch some big blue catfish. Use fresh cutbait with live bait rigs along wing dam tips or in or close to the main channel of the Missouri River.  Missouri River (Council Bluffs to Missouri State Line)
      Channel Catfish - Fair: A few anglers are catching catfish on worms and cut bait below wing dams and along the banks. Sauger - Slow: Spring is a good time to catch sauger and walleye on the Missouri. Use jigs tipped with minnows or worms below wing dams or where tributary streams or rivers come into the Missouri River. Shovelnose sturgeon - Good: Anglers are catching shovelnose sturgeon on live bait rigs tipped with worms. Freshwater Drum - Fair: Try using live bait rigs or jigs tipped with worms along the bank and around tributary stream or rivers where they join the Missouri River. Blue Catfish - Fair: Anglers are catching a few blue catfish on with fresh cutbait. Try by the wing dam tips, close to or in the main channel of the Missouri River for your best chance at getting bigger blue catfish.  The Missouri River at Decatur, Nebraska is at 25.67 ft. /50,300 cfs./64 degrees. Missouri River water temperatures are up 3 degrees and water levels are down 1.12 feet from last week. Fishing continues to be slow with few anglers out with the higher water conditions we are currently having on the Missouri River along the Iowa border. The Army Corps of Engineers is releasing water from Gavin's Point Dam due to snow melt from up North, which has contributed to higher water conditions.