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Rick

Iowa Fishing Reports

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Got to do some bass fishing thurs.& fri. at the marsh and at volga. The weather wasn't the most helpfull( especially the WIND!), but the bass were willing to play! At volga we did well on numbers, with one over 4 lbs. The marsh lots of smaller ones, but nothing over 3lbs. Best tech. ranged from carolina rigs,crank baits, and stupid rigs. At the marsh a spider jig as well as texas rigs produced.

the male crappies are still on the rocks at volga, with the water temps in the low 60's, the gils shouldn't be to far behind to spawn.

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We were on the marsh again this morning. No wind!!!!!! The guys have been really pounding the bass lately. We did ok. Could never really put a pattern together thou. Caught fish on inside and outside weed lines, lilly pads, and stumps. Used texas rigs, flute, senkos, silver minnow, buzz bait, and frogs. Probably manage 20 fish with the biggest being 4 lbs.

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For immediate release: december 17, 2009

NORTHWEST

Crawford Creek Impoundment

They're catching a few bluegill and crappie.

Bacon Creek Lake

Try fishing for trout. Make sure you have a trout stamp. Rainbow Trout - Fair: The lake is frozen over, use flashy lures tipped with a wax worm.

Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)

Walleye fishing is very good. Walleye - Good: Fish are biting around the lake, particularly off the inlet and around college island. Try any of the normal hot spots. Good all day but especially around dusk. Try using a jigging spoon tipped with a minnow head or a minnow below a bobber.

Lakes are frozen over pretty well, with reported ice depths from 7 to 9 inches. Check the ice before going out to your spots. Walleye are biting well at Storm Lake. Make sure that you don't go alone, tell people where you are going and when you plan to be home. For more information about these lakes, call Don Herrig (712-657-2638) at the Black Hawk District Office in Lake View.

Clear Lake

Ice thickness is 5 to 8 inches. Check it as you go. Yellow bass are biting on the west end of the lake in the Farmers beach area and the little lake. Try using a jigging spoon or a hook with a minnow.

Silver Lake (Worth)

Fall sampling showed good numbers of perch with fish up to 12 inches but the biggest year class is 6 to 7 inches. Fair number of Pike. Yellow Perch - Fair:

Blue Pit

The DNR will stock 1,500 rainbow trout will be stocked next week. Check the DNR web site www.iowadnr.gov for exact date.

For more information on fishing in the area lakes and rivers, call the Clear Lake Fisheries Office at (641) 357-3517.

Lake Pahoja

Bluegill - Good: Use small ice jigs tipped with wax worms along brush piles. Crappie - Fair: Use small ice jigs tipped with a wax worms along brush piles early in the morning and evenings.

Big Spirit Lake

Bluegill - Excellent: Use small ice jigs tipped with wax worms or plastics at the Grade or north end of Anglers Bay. Crappie - Fair: Use small ice jigs tipped with wax worms at the Grade and north end of Anglers Bay. Yellow Perch - Excellent: Use small ice jigs tipped with plastics or wax worms at the Grade or Angler's Bay. Walleye - Good: Use jigging lures tipped with a minnow head along the weed line out from Templar Lagoon or on rock bars at Big Stoney and Cottonwood points.

West Okoboji Lake

Bluegill - Good: Use small ice jigs tipped with plastics or a wax worms in Emerson and Miller's bays. Walleye - Good: Using jigging lures tipped with a minnow head at sunrise and sunset in Smith's and Millers bays.

Five Island Lake

Walleye - Good: Fish at sunrise and sunset along drop-offs with jigging lures tipped with a minnow.

Upper Gar Lake

Bluegill - Fair: Use small ice jigs tipped with live bait or plastics. Crappie - Slow: A few fish are being caught while targeting perch and bluegills. Yellow Perch - Fair: Use small ice jigs tipped with a wax worm.

Kids Corner: If you want to take a child fishing then take them to the Grade or north end of Anglers Bay on Big Spirit Lake for bluegills and yellow perch. Use a small gold color ice jig tipped with a wax worm. Lower the jig to the bottom and then raise it 6 to 8 inches off the bottom and lightly jig the bait. Caution should always be taken when going out onto the ice. For more information on ice conditions and fishing for the lakes and rivers in the Spirit lake area call 712-336-1840.

NORTHEAST

Volga Lake

There is about 4 to 6 inches of ice in most areas and relatively free of snow. A few anglers have been out on the ice. Bluegill - Slow: Crappie - Slow:

Lake Hendricks

Ice depths are variable but 6 inches is common. Anglers are catching fish but some sorting is necessary. Bluegill - Fair: Crappie - Slow:

Lake Meyer

Many places have 3 to 4 inches of ice with about 2 inches of cloudy, melt ice on top. Bluegill - Fair: Evening seems to be the best time to catch a bluegill. They are still deep. Try using a rubber-tail jig. Crappie - Slow: Fish over the deeper brush piles. A few fish over 10 inches are being caught.

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)

No report. Walleye - No Report:

Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)

No report. Walleye - No Report:

Turkey River (below Clermont)

No report. Walleye - No Report:

Cedar River (above Nashua)

Ice depths vary greatly so use caution. There has been activity in the impounded area above the Nashua Dam. Anglers have been using wax worms with some success. Channel Catfish - Slow: Yes, through the ice on wax worms. Bluegill - Slow: Largemouth Bass - Slow: Crappie - Slow:

Decorah District Streams

Area trout streams are in good condition and should provide great fishing. The water is extremely clear so sneaking up on those fish is the key. Even though stocking has finished for the year, there are plenty of fish in the streams.

Ice conditions on ponds and lakes are better this week especially on areas where the snow has blown off. The biggest problem seems to be around the edges where the snow is deepest. Use caution. Area rivers still have open water. For information on stream conditions, call the Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.

Silver Lake (Delaware)

Anglers have had some success on Silver lake catching bluegill and crappie. Ice thickness is 6 to 8 inches of good ice. Bluegill - Good: Fish in the deeper water just off of the bottom with an ice jig and wax worm. Crappie - Good: More crappies seem to be caught fishing off of the bottom than being found suspended. Jig and wax worm tend to be more effective than jig and minnow.

Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)

Casey Lake has seen ice fishing pressure this week. Bluegill - Good: Be sure to concentrate around submerged structure near the dam.

Lake Delhi

There have been no reports of anglers venturing out on Lake Delhi but one week ago, there was still some open water on the main lake. Use extreme caution and follow all ice safety precautions if heading out onto this lake.

Big Woods Lake

Anglers are catching crappies but some sorting is required.

Brinker Lake

A few anglers have been spotted ice fishing on Brinker but there have been no fish reports.

George Wyth Lake

Anglers have been fishing George Wyth early morning and late evening but there have been no fish reports.

Avenue of the Saints Pond

Anglers are catching bluegill and crappie with some sorting required. Bluegill - Good: Fish the south end of the lake in 12 to 18 feet of water. Crappie - Good: Fish on the south end of the lake in 12 to 18 feet of water or suspended around structure.

Martens Lake

There have been reports of good ice but no catch information.

Plainfield

Anglers are catching bluegills on this thirty acre lake. Bluegill - Good: Try locating structure and fishing just off of the bottom with an ice jig and wax worm.

Ice fishing season is upon us and always use extreme caution when venturing out onto ice. Ice thickness reports in Black Hawk County and surrounding areas are varying anywhere from 4 to 6 inches. Try fishing the frozen backwater areas of the Cedar and Wapsipinicon rivers for good panfish success. For more information contact district office in Manchester at 563-927-3276.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 9

The boat ramps have become locked in ice. Solid ice for fishing has formed with most areas having 5 to 6 inches but anglers should always use caution in areas where heavy snow may have insulated ice or areas of potential current. Shore Slough near Lansing and Blackhawk Park on the Wisconsin side are popular fishing areas with good catches of bluegills and crappie. Some anglers suggest using orange colored ice jigs.

Mississippi River Pool 10

Lynxville boat ramp has become locked in ice limiting access to tail water fishing. Ice is 5 to 6 inches in most places but anglers should still use caution in areas with potential current. Anglers in the Harpers Ferry area report good catches of bluegills and some crappie below the spillway and in Joyce Lake.

Mississippi River Pool 11

The boat ramps in town are locked in ice limiting access to tail water fishing. Some anglers are able to access the tail waters by pushing a boat out over the ice at the DNR station. Bluegill - Good: Initial catches on Bussey Lake were high but has slowed some. Nice sized bluegills and crappie still being caught. Crappie - Fair: Some nice catches of crappie have been reported from Bussey Lake but action can be hit or miss. Sauger - Excellent:

Solid ice for fishing has formed with most areas having 5 to 6 inches of ice but anglers should always use caution in areas where heavy snow may have insulated ice or areas of potential current. The ramps at Lynxville and the city ramp in Guttenberg are locked in ice. Ice is beginning to form at the DNR ramp so anglers should call the DNR office for an update. Call Guttenberg fisheries station for current conditions at 563-252-1156.

Mississippi River Pool 12

Ice conditions at most backwaters are good with reports of 4 to 8 inches at most lakes. Ice conditions in sloughs with flowing water will be considerably less and travel on them is not recommended. River stage in Dubuque is stable around 7.5 feet. Reports of fish being caught in the local marinas, Kehough Slough, and Tippy Lake. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are biting well on ice fishing jigs tipped with wax worms. Anglers are sorting through a lot of small fish. Crappie - Fair: Anglers that are finding the crappie are finding big ones. Big and L'il Micks or soft plastic jigs are working well.

Mississippi River Pool 13

Ice conditions at most backwaters are good with reports of 4 to 8 inches at most lakes. Ice conditions in sloughs with flowing water will be considerably less and travel on them is not recommended. River stage in Bellevue is forecast to rise to 4.5 feet, and then remain stable. Reports of fish being caught in South Sabula Lake and Mickelson's Landing. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are biting on ice fishing jigs tipped with wax worms. Anglers are sorting through a lot of small fish. Crappie - Slow: Not a lot of crappie reports, yet. But fish jigs with soft plastics or small spoons like L'il Micks for best results.

Mississippi River Pool 14

Ice conditions at most backwaters are good with reports of 4 to 6 inches at most lakes. Ice conditions in sloughs with flowing water will be considerably less and travel on them is not recommended. River stage in Camanche is stable around 9.35 feet. Reports of fish being caught in the Rock Creek area. Bluegill - Fair: Lots of small fish coming on jigs with wax worms.

For fishing information in Pool 12 to 15 of the Mississippi River contact the Bellevue Fish Management and Research Station at 563-872-4976

Mississippi River Pool 16

Tail water stage is 5.33 feet. As of this week, anglers have been able to launch boats at the Marquette St. ramp to get up to the tail waters. There is some floating ice at the ramp. There are reports of 3 to 4 inches of ice in Sunset Marina. There is some open water in the Credit Island Harbor. Bluegill - No Report: Crappie - No Report: Sauger - Fair: Some saugers are being caught in Sylvan Slough on jigs and minnows or by pulling three-way rigs with crankbaits. Walleye - Slow: Walleye fishing has been slow.

Mississippi River Pool 17

Tail water stage is 4.00 feet. Both boat ramps at Muscatine have ice chunks floating in them. As of this week, anglers have been able to launch boats at the lower ramp. Watch for floating ice chunks in the main channel. There is 3 to 4 inches of ice in Big Timber. Take caution when ice fishing. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are being caught on small ice fishing jigs tipped with wax worms. Most of the fish have been small so some sorting with be necessary. Take caution when out on the ice. Crappie - Slow: A few small crappies are being caught on small ice fishing jigs tipped with wax worms. Sauger - Slow: Fishing for saugers in the tail waters has been slow. Walleye - Slow: Walleye fishing has been slow.

Mississippi River Pool 18

Tail water stage is 5.28 feet and has risen over the past couple of days. Ice conditions in the backwaters are unsafe for ice fishing. Bluegill - Slow: Ice conditions in the backwaters are unsafe for ice fishing. Crappie - Slow: Ice conditions in the backwaters are unsafe for ice fishing. Sauger - No Report: Walleye - No Report:

Mississippi River Pool 19

Tail water stage is 2.54 feet. There are reports of 2 to 3 inches of ice in the backwaters. Ice conditions in the backwaters are unsafe for ice fishing. Bluegill - No Report: Ice conditions in the backwaters are unsafe for ice fishing. Crappie - No Report: Ice conditions in the backwaters are unsafe for ice fishing. Sauger - Slow: Sauger fishing in the tail waters has been slow. Walleye - Slow: Walleye fishing has been slow.

Mississippi River Pools 16 to 20: Main channel water temperature is around 32 degrees. Backwaters have ice on them but take caution when ice fishing. For more information on fishing pools 16 to 20 contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.

SOUTHEAST

Lake Geode

A thin layer of ice has finally covered the lake with a few holes kept open by the geese. Any warm weather or wind will break up the ice.

Lake Belva Deer

Unsafe ice conditions. The lake has finally frozen over in the last few days with only a couple of spots at the lower end being kept open by some geese.

Pollmiller Park Lake

Unsafe ice conditions

Lake of the Hills

Ice conditions are getting better. Drill test holes before going out too far.

Skunk River (Rose Hill to Coppock)

The river iced over completely about Tuesday night.

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

Hannen Lake

Ice fishing has begun here, but not much has been caught.

Rodgers Park Lake

Ice is reported as unsafe.

Iowa Lake

Nobody has been fishing yet.

Kent Park Lake

Ice fishing has started. There is approximately 4 inches of ice on the lake and the ponds. Bluegill - Fair: Some decent bluegills were caught around brush the last few days.

Lake Macbride

There will be another riprap project on the lake this winter. The lake has been lowered approximately 8 feet for equipment access to shorelines and islands. A few ice anglers have ventured out, but use caution as the ice is variable in different portions of the lake. The dam area froze over on Dec. 15.

Pleasant Creek Lake

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

Diamond Lake

Ice anglers have been sighted on the lake, but no ice or fishing reports are available.

Otter Creek Lake

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

Union Grove Lake

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

Coralville Reservoir

As of Dec. 17, the lake level is 686 feet and is projected to reach winter pool of 683 feet on Dec. 20. The ice is extremely variable and dangerous due to current and falling water levels.

Ice fishing has begun in some areas, while other areas are still unsafe. For more information contact the Lake Macbride Fisheries Station at 319-624-3615.

Lake Wapello

The lake was drained this summer but has been renovated and is being allowed to refill.

Red Haw Lake

The ice is variable and thin in many spots. There is also some open water. Use caution if venturing out.

Lake Keomah

The ice is starting to form but it is not thick enough to support anglers.

Lake Miami

The lake is frozen over but ice thickness varies so use caution if venturing out.

Lake Sugema

The lake is starting to freeze over but there is not enough ice to support anglers.

Rathbun Reservoir

The lake is starting to freeze over in the bays and coves. Use caution if venturing out because the ice thickness varies from place to place. Honey Creek State Park will be closed this winter due to road construction.

For additional fishing information in south central Iowa call the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406.

SOUTHWEST

Rock Creek Lake

Ice conditions are good with 5-plus inches. Bluegill - Good: Anglers are doing well late in the afternoon and into the evening. Depths of 12 feet or more are producing the fish. Crappie - Fair: Crappie are being caught along with the bluegills in 12 feet of water or more. The better crappie bite is in the evening. Pink and white with wax worm is working well. Fish are averaging 7 to 9 inches.

Roberts Creek Lake

Ice conditions are good with 5 to 6 inches of ice.

Big Creek Lake

As of Wednesday ice thickness ranged from 4 to 6 inches. Bluegill - Good: Anglers are catching quality sized bluegills mostly midday through mid-afternoon off sunken brush in the main lake and the deeper coves. Crappie - No Report. As more anglers hit the there should be more information for future reports.

Hickory Grove Lake

Ice thickness is around 5 inches. Caution should be used around the main lake side of the island. This was the last place to freeze and ice thickness will be less here. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are being caught near sunken habitat. This habitat can be found in most of the coves and in deeper water out from the points. Sonar and/or cameras help in finding structure.

Ankeny Lake (DMACC)

Bluegill - Fair: The lake level was back to normal before ice up. The fishery is still present. Some anglers are catching decent sized bluegills. Nice sized crappies are also present and worth targeting.

Red Rock Reservoir

Crappie - Good: Anglers are having luck catching crappies in the marina bay.

Boone District Farm Ponds

Ice conditions on central Iowa farm ponds are good with most having 6 inches or more. Caution should be used on ponds that froze over before the heavy snow. Check ice thickness frequently.

Ice conditions are improving on central Iowa lakes and ponds. Most are now able to be ice fished, but it is still recommended to test ice thickness. Contact Ben Dodd or Andy Otting at (515) 432-2823 for information on the above area lakes and rivers.

Greenfield Lake

As of Dec. 16, the lake had 6 inches of ice with no open water. Greenfield is a popular ice fishing lake because of the quality panfish fishery.

Nodaway Lake

Nodaway Lake should offer good crappie fishing this winter with a large year class in the 8 to 9-inch range. Bluegills are 7 inches.

Orient Lake

Ice is 6 inches thick and water was turbid. Bluegill - Slow: Teardrops tipped with wax worms were catching 6 to 7-inch bluegill.

Littlefield Lake

Spring sampling showed a large year class of crappies that should be in the 8 to 9-inch range this winter. Littlefield averages 8 inches of ice.

Lake Manawa

Manawa has 6 inches of ice. Channel Catfish - Slow: A few catfish are being caught on minnows. Crappie - Good: Anglers are having good success using a jig called Forage Minnow. The jig has a small spinner and they are tipping it with a live minnow. Sorting is necessary for 10-inch crappie.

Cold Springs District Farm Ponds

Farm ponds offer excellent opportunity for quality ice fishing in southern Iowa. Remember to always ask permission before fishing a private pond. Bluegill - Fair: Typically bluegills can be found in the deepest part of the pond. Tip small jigs with wax worms and start fishing a foot off the bottom. Crappie - Fair: Fish the larger farm ponds using wax worms or minnows. Fish different depths in the water column as crappie can be suspended.

Most southwest Iowa lakes have 6 to 8 inches of ice. High winds during last weeks snow storm likely left drifts on the ice. Anglers should avoid areas with large amounts of snow as this insulates ice delaying formation. For more information contact Bryan Hayes or Mark Boucher at the Cold Springs District Office 712-769-2587.

Lake Icaria

Skim ice has formed over most of the lake. Waterfowl is keeping several areas open. Ice thickness in the quiet areas can be up to 8 inches thick, but open portions of the lake have ice less than 2 inches. The timbered area just to the east of the concrete road is very productive. Bullhead - Good: Anglers have been catching a lot of bullheads on wax worms in the flooded timber. Bluegill - Fair: Small wax worms near flooded timber have been catching several bluegills. Crappie - Good: A lot of crappie have been caught from the flooded timber on wax worms. Walleye - Fair: Wax worms and small minnows have been successful for walleyes in the flooded timber.

Green Valley Lake

The lake has been lowered for a sediment removal project this winter. The lake is expected to be refilled in April 2010.

Summit Lake

The lake has been lowered for allow for shoreline rock to be placed this winter. The lake is expected to be refilled in April 2010.

Three Mile Lake

Reports include variable ice thickness - from 8 inches in some areas with nearby areas having only 1-inch of ice or in open water. Check thickness frequently.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake

Ice has formed over most of the lake. Waterfowl have kept some areas open. Ice thickness varies greatly. In some areas, 4 to 8 inches are common, but within a few yards, ice may be less than 2 inches thick.

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Anybody catching any fish through the ice here in the dubuque area? I just can't seem to find any at all? Any help?

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Here's the Iowa Fishing report

NORTHWEST IOWA

Crawford Creek Impoundment

Bluegill and crappie fishing with wax worms has been pretty good. Anglers are targeting the area southwest of the boat ramp area.

Bluegill - Good: Anglers are catching bluegill about hand size with wax worms. Crappie - Good: Anglers are picking up crappie with wax worms and minnows, some are nice size fish.

Badger Lake

Anglers are still catching bluegill and crappie. Ice thickness is 15 to 16 inches. Bluegill - Good: Nice size bluegills are being caught with small jigs and wax worms. Crappie - Good: Nice size crappie are being caught as well.

Brushy Creek Lake

The boat ramp areas have been plowed out. Anglers are catching bluegill and some crappie. Ice conditions remain fair, but there are still some areas with thin ice or may have water under the snow. Bluegill - Good: Bluegill are being caught in 20 to 25 feet of water right off of the bottom using wax worms. Crappie - Fair: A few crappies have been caught on minnows. Walleye - Slow: Walleye have been slow, but try just at sunset for them.

Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake )

Not a lot of anglers have been out fishing, but the ones that are report that walleye fishing has been fair. Walleye - Fair: Anglers have been using jigs tipped with minnow heads or minnows under a bobber at the usual fishing spots around the lake. Evening has been the most productive.

Black Hawk Lake

Anglers have been working the lake, but the fishing has been pretty slow. Ice is around 15 inches thick. Boat ramp area on Ice House Point has been plowed. Bluegill - Slow: Some bluegill are being caught with wax worms, but most are smaller size fish. Crappie - Slow: Some crappie are being caught with wax worms and minnows, but most are smaller size fish.

Southwood Conservation Area Pond (east)

A few bluegills are being caught in the evening. Bluegill - Fair: A few anglers are picking up bluegill in the evening using small jigs with wax worms.

Arrowhead Lake

There hasn't been a lot of fishing activity on Arrowhead Lake , but the lane and boat ramp area have recently been plowed allowing easier access to the lake.

We have not received a lot of fishing reports. Bluegill and crappie fishing has been good at some of the lakes. Snow is deep out on the lakes and snow shoes would help anglers to get out. Always use caution on the ice.

Beeds Lake

Ice thickness 14 to 16 inches. Crappies and bluegills are biting.

Eldred Sherwood Lake

Ice thickness 16 to 18 inches. Bluegills are biting on wax worms.

Upper Pine Lake

Ice thickness 6 to 8 inches.

Lake Smith

Ice thickness 16 to 18 inches. Bluegills are biting in the late afternoon on wax worms.

Clear Lake

Ice thickness is 18 to 20 inches. Yellow bass are biting on the west end of the lake; try the Farmers Beach area or the Little Lake. Try using a small jig or a plain hook tipped with a minnow or cut bait. Walleye - Slow: most fish caught are below the 14 inch length limit. Muskellunge - Slow: Yellow Bass - Fair: The best bite is at first light and at dusk.

Lake Cornelia

Ice thickness is 16 to 18 inches.

Rice Lake

Ice thickness is 12 to 18 inches. Crappie - Slow: Yellow Perch - Slow:

Silver Lake (Worth)

Ice thickness is 16 to 18 inches. Yellow perch are biting on wax worms and minnows.

Bluebill Lake

Ice thickness is 18 to 20 inches. Bluegills are biting on wax worms near the brush piles.

Fin and Feather Lake

Ice thickness 16 to 18 inches. Fishing is slow.

Elm Lake

Ice thickness 14 to 18 inches. Yellow perch are biting, will take some sorting to get a limit. Yellow Perch - Good:

For more information on fishing in the area lakes and rivers, call the Clear Lake Fisheries Office at 641-357-3517.

Lake Pahoja

Bluegill - Fair: Use small ice jigs tipped with wax worms along the old road bed. Some sorting will be required. Crappie - Fair: Fish with small ice jigs tipped with wax worms along the old road bed. Some sorting will be required.

Big Spirit Lake

There are people driving on the ice at Sunset Park , Angler's Bay, and a few at Buffalo Run. Care should be taken because of slush ice pockets under the snow. Bluegill - Fair: Use small ice jigs tipped with wax worms on the north end of Angler's Bay. Crappie - Slow: A few fish are being caught on the north end of Angler's Bay while sight fishing for bluegills. Yellow Perch - Fair: Fishing is starting to pick up for perch out on the main lake in 20 to 22 feet of water in the morning and evenings with small ice jigs tipped with wax worms or small minnows. A few perch are also being caught while sight fishing at the Grade and north end of Angler's Bay. Walleye - Excellent: Use a jigging lure tipped with a minnow along rock bars, weed lines, or out on the main lake silt basin in the mornings and evenings.

East Okoboji Lake

Walleye - Fair: Use jigging lures tipped with a minnow at Jingles and Stony points in the evenings.

Minnewashta Lake

Walleye - Fair: Use jigging lures tipped with live bait in the evening.

Silver Lake ( Dickinson )

Yellow Perch - Slow: A few fish are being caught while fishing for walleye. Walleye - Fair: Use jigging lures tipped with a minnow in the evenings.

West Okoboji Lake

A few anglers are driving onto the ice at the Emerson Bay boat ramp. Bluegill - Good: Use small ice jigs tipped with plastics or live bait in the bays along weed beds, fish are scattered so keep moving to find pockets of fish. Yellow Perch - Fair: Use small ice jigs tipped with a wax worm along weed beds. Perch will be mixed with bluegills.

Five Island Lake

Crappie - Fair: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or wax worm for suspended fish. Walleye - Good: Fish at sunrise or sunset along drop-offs with jigging lures tipped with a minnow.

Elk Lake

Snowmobiles may be the best way to access the lake from the road. Yellow Perch - Fair: Use a small jig tipped with wax worms or a small minnow beneath a bobber. Some sorting will be required.

West Swan Lake S.W.M.A.

The best way to access the lake is by snow mobile. Yellow Perch - Fair: Use small ice jigs tipped with live bait.

Silver Lake ( Palo Alto )

Yellow Perch - Fair: Use a small jig tipped with wax worms or a small minnow beneath a bobber. Some sorting will be required.

Virgin Lake

Using a snowmobile may be the best way to access the lake from the road. Yellow Perch - Fair: Use a small jig tipped with wax worms or a small minnow beneath a bobber. Some sorting will be required.

Spirit Lake District Farm Ponds

Be sure to ask the landowner for permission before fishing a private farm pond. Bluegill - Good: Use a small ice jig tipped with a wax worm. Begin fishing in the deepest part of the pond near the dam.

Snow conditions are making it difficult for anglers to get to fishing locations on all area lakes. There is some slush under the snow.

NORTHEAST IOWA FISHING REPORTS

Volga Lake

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

Lake Hendricks

Lots of people have been out. Ice thickness varies from 18 to 20 inches. Bluegill - Good: Reports of 6 to 8 inch gills are being caught. Crappie - Good: Crappies 8 to 10 inches are being caught on light colored jigs.

Lake Meyer

Ice thickness is running 12 to 14 inches. Lot 's of anglers have been out and report a slow but steady bite. Bluegill - Fair: Try angling midway off the bottom. Wax worms and mousies on a red jig seem to work best. Crappie - Fair: Try using off white jigs for crappies.

Decorah District Streams

This is one of the best times of the year to try and catch trout. Put on some snowshoes on an overcast day and slowly creep down to the stream. Try using a subsurface fly.

Ice conditions are good on most area lakes. Use caution when going out on rivers and streams as there are still a few areas with open water.

Silver Lake ( Delaware )

Anglers have had some success on Silver Lake catching mainly bluegill with an occasional crappie. Ice thickness here is between 6 to 8 inches of good ice. Best success has been early morning or late afternoon before dark. Bluegill - Slow: Concentrate efforts in the deeper water fishing just off of the bottom with an ice jig and wax worm.

Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake )

Casey Lake has been fair for bluegill and yellow perch. Bluegill - Fair: Be sure to fish around submerged structure from the center of the lake and east towards the dam. Look for fish in 12 to 14 feet of water using small ice jigs tipped with a wax worm. Yellow Perch - Fair: Perch fishing has been consistent anywhere on the lake, fish jig tipped with a wax worm for good success.

Lake Delhi

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

Big Woods Lake

Anglers are catching crappies but some sorting may be required.

Brinker Lake

A few anglers have been spotted ice fishing. Some sorting may be necessary. Bluegill - Fair: Crappie - Fair:

George Wyth Lake

Anglers have been fishing George Wyth early morning and late evening with some success on both bluegill and crappie. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are reporting catches of bluegill with some sorting necessary. Crappie - Fair: Anglers have been catching crappie on George Wyth Lake on a fairly consistent basis. Look for areas where pressure has been the heaviest.

North Prairie Lake

North Prairie Lake will be stocked on Jan. 16.

Avenue of the Saints Pond

Anglers are catching both bluegill and crappie, some sorting may be necessary. Bluegill - Fair: Concentrate efforts on the south end of the lake in 12 to 18 feet of water. Crappie - Fair: Concentrate efforts on the south end of the lake in 12 to 18 feet of water or suspended around structure.

Koutny Pond

Fishing has been fair here for bluegill running in the 7 to 8.5 inch range. Bluegill - Fair: Fish in areas with 8 to 10 feet of water which can be found on the east side of the lake.

Plainfield

Anglers are catching nice size bluegill on this 30-acre lake. Bluegill - Fair: Try locating structure and fishing just off of the bottom with an ice jig and wax worm.

Wapsipinicon River ( Tripoli to Troy Mills)

Anglers are beginning to pickup crappie and northern pike above the dam in Independence as water clarity has improved. Most of the action has been above the dam in Independence . Northern Pike - Fair: Anglers have been catching pike while fishing for crappie using either a wax worm or minnow under a jig. Bluegill - Slow: Try fishing the Independence Impoundment above the dam. Crappie - Fair: Try fishing in two to three foot of water on the backwaters of the Wapsi above the dam.

Ice thickness around Black Hawk County is varying from 6 to 8 inches. Best success has been on the following lakes; Ave. of Saints, Plainfield , George Wyth, Brinker and Big Woods for bluegill and crappie. This Saturday, North Prairie Lake will be stocked with trout. The weather forecast looks excellent and will be a great opportunity to get the children out for some great rod bending action. For more information contact district office in Manchester at 563-927-3276.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 9

The boat ramps have become locked in ice. Solid ice for fishing has formed in most areas having 8 inches or more. Anglers should always use caution as warm weather may weaken ice especially in areas near shore and where there may be current. Northern Pike - Fair: A few nice pike have been caught on tip up near Minnesota Slough. Bluegill - Fair: Shore Slough near Lansing and Blackhawk park on the Wisconsin side continue to be popular fishing areas with mixed reports and some good catches of bluegills and crappie. Fair numbers of bluegill are being reported from the lakes along Minnesota Slough. These include Cord Wood Lake , Bear Paw Lake and Fish Lake . At times the bluegill have been stacked up along the weed line in the very upper reaches of Fish Lake . Largemouth Bass - Fair: There have been reports of a few decent largemouth bass caught in the middle of Fish Lake . Some anglers are reporting catching nice sized largemouth bass on teardrops baited with wax worms in the Lansing Village Creek Marina area. Crappie - Fair: Recently a few crappies have been caught in Indian along Wisconsin Slough. Shore Slough near Lansing and Blackhawk park on the Wisconsin side continue to be popular fishing spots. Yellow Perch - Fair: Yellow perch were being caught in the lakes along Minnesota Slough. These include Cord Wood Lake , Bear Paw Lake and Fish Lake . This has been a hit or miss year, and activity can rapidly change in less than a day.

Mississippi River Pool 10

Lynxville boat ramp has become locked in ice limiting access to tail water fishing. Ice is 8 inches or more in most places but anglers should still use caution in crossing areas with potential current. Northern Pike - Good: Anglers have reported fair catches of northern pike using tip ups near the spillway in the Harpers Ferry area. Pike are still being taken out of Bussey Lake near Guttenberg but action has slowed a bit. Bluegill - Good: Anglers in the Harpers Ferry area report good catches of bluegills and some crappie below the spillway and in Joyce lake. Mixed reports from Bussey Lake but some nice sized bluegills and crappie still being caught. Mixed reports are also coming form Sny Magill area where anglers are fishing Norwegian and Ice lake across from the ramp with fair catches. Largemouth Bass - Slow: Anglers have reported a few catches of largemouth bass near the spillway in the Harpers Ferry area. The action has been hit or miss. Crappie - Good: Anglers in the Harpers Ferry area report good catches of bluegills and some nice catches of crappie below the spillway and in Joyce lake. Some nice catches of crappie have been reported from Bussey lake and from Norwegian in the Sny Magill area but action can be hit or miss. Yellow Perch - Good: Several nice yellow perch have been reported out of Bussey Lake in Lower Pool 10. Most folks fishing with a jig and wax worms.

Mississippi River Pool 11

Both the Guttenberg city ramp and the DNR boat ramp are locked in ice. Warmer weather forecast may change this but there is a lot of ice to get rid of before ramps will open up. Call the fisheries station at Guttenberg for updates 563-252-1156.

Ice fishing is generally slow but a few anglers still reporting brief periods of good action. Many anglers are frustrated as they are seeing many fish on their cameras but catching them has proven difficult. Northern Pike - Slow: Angers with camera's report seeing a few northern pike in the Marina and at Sunfish Lake but no one is really targeting them with tip ups. Bluegill - Slow: Fishing in Marina is slow with a few bluegill and small yellow perch being caught. Some larger bluegill are being caught in Zollicoffers lake. Crappie - Fair: Scattered reports of a few crappies being caught in Zollicoffers Lake and Sunfish Lake . Small white or green tube jigs baited with wax worms seem to be the best bait. Yellow Perch - Fair: Some 8-inch yellow perch are being reported in Lower Pool 11 at Sunfish Lake . A few smaller perch are also being caught in the Marina at Mud Lake . Perch schools seen on camera but hard to catch. Sauger - Good: The DNR ramp at Guttenberg is locked in ice. The only access to tail water fishing is by airboat. Those that have fished have caught some small sauger.

Solid ice for fishing remains with most areas having 8 inches or more of ice but forecasts for warmer weather could weaken ice especially around shorelines and any areas of flowing water. The ramps at Lynxville and the city ramp in Guttenberg are locked in ice.

Mississippi River Pool 12

Backwater ice conditions are good with 10 to 12 inches at most lakes. Ice conditions in areas of flowing water will be considerably less and travel on them is not recommended. River stage in Dubuque is stable at 8.25 feet. Anglers in Pool 12 should keep an eye out for radio tagged crappie. The DNR has externally radio tagged 200 crappies in Pool 12 and will be tracking them over the course of the next year. Tags are attached to the dorsal spines and we ask that you release any tagged fish. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are sorting through a lot of small fish and the bite has been slower this past week. Fish are biting in Kehough Slough, and Tippy, Stone, Fishtrap, and O'Learys lakes. Crappie - Fair: Crappie fishing has been day to day. Best fishing has been in Tippy Lake . Jigging spoons, soft plastics on jigs, or minnows have been producing best.

Mississippi River Pool 13

Backwater ice conditions are good with reports of 10 to 12 inches at most lakes. Ice conditions in areas of flowing water will be considerably less and travel on them is not recommended. River stage in Bellevue is 6.38 feet. Bluegill - Fair: Bite has slowed over the past couple of weeks. Fish being caught in Brown's Lake and South Sabula Lake , but a lot of small fish. Wax worms on jigs have been working best. Crappie - Fair: Crappie bite has slowed as well. Still a few fish coming out of South Sabula Lake . No reports from Spring Lake , but it is also a good spot to try.

Mississippi River Pool 14

Backwater ice conditions are good with reports of 10 to 12 inches at most lakes. Ice conditions in areas of flowing water will be considerably less and travel on them is not recommended. River stage in Camanche is 9.74 feet. Northern Pike - Fair: Pike are coming off tip ups with 4 inch suckers. Bluegill - Slow: Bite has been slow with a lot of small fish at Rock Creek. Crappie - Slow: A few fish, but relatively slow at Rock Creek.

Mississippi River Pool 16

Tail water stage is 7.83 feet and has been slowly falling over the past few days. As of Thursday, the Marquette St. ramp still had ice at the boat ramp. Some ice fishing is being done in Sunset Marina. Ice anglers are reminded that fluctuating river stages, above freezing temperatures and snow cover can create poor ice conditions. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills are being caught in Sunset Marina on small ice jigs and wax worms. Most fish have been on the small side. Largemouth Bass - No Report: Crappie - Slow: Some crappies are also being caught in Sunset Marina on small ice fishing jigs and wax worms. Sauger - No Report: Boat ramp still frozen in. Walleye - No Report: Boat ramp still frozen in.

Mississippi River Pool 17

Tail water stage is 6.64 feet. As of Thursday, the main channel and boat ramps were frozen in at Muscatine . Ice fishing in the backwaters has been slow. Most ice fishing reports are coming from lakes and farm ponds. Anglers are reminded that fluctuating river stages, above freezing temperatures, and snow cover can make for poor ice conditions. Bluegill - Slow: Fishing has been slow in Big Timber. Most of the bluegills that are being caught have been on the small side. Big Timber has variable ice thicknesses of 4 to 6 inches. Big Timber also has some areas with water and slush sitting on the ice due to recent warmer temperatures. Anglers should use extreme caution when ice fishing in Big Timber. Crappie - Slow: Sauger - No Report: Tail waters not accessible by boat. Walleye - No Report: Tail waters not accessible by boat.

Mississippi River Pool 18

Tail water stage is 10.64 feet. Tail waters are not accessible for walleye and sauger fishing. The main channel is frozen in and river levels remain high. Most ice fishing reports are coming from area lakes and ponds. Ice anglers are reminded that fluctuating river levels, snow cover, and above freezing temperatures may create poor ice conditions in the backwaters. Bluegill - Slow: Crappie - Slow: Sauger - No Report: The tail waters at New Boston are not accessible. Walleye - No Report:

Mississippi River Pool 19

Tail water stage is 5.43 feet. Boat ramps are frozen in. Ice fishing in the backwaters has been slow. Most ice fishing reports are coming from area lakes and ponds. Ice anglers are reminded that fluctuating river levels, above freezing temperatures and snow cover can create poor ice conditions. Bluegill - No Report: Crappie - No Report: Sauger - No Report: Walleye - No Report:

Mississippi River Pools 16 to 20: As of Thursday, all tail waters in pools 16 to 19 were not accessible by boat. Most ice fishing reports are coming from area lakes and ponds. Ice anglers are reminded that fluctuating river levels, above freezing temperatures and snow cover can create poor ice conditions. Some of the backwaters have areas with water sitting on the ice due to recent warm temperatures. Ice anglers should take extreme caution when fishing the backwaters.

SOUTHEAST IOWA

Lake Geode

Ice thickness is variable but most of it is between 4 and 6 inches thick. Good numbers of anglers are out on the ice in the area close to and across from the main boat ramp. Bluegill - Good: Work the edges of the drop off north of the ramp. To the south, there are several piles of habitat to work over.

Lake Belva Deer

Most areas of the lake have 6+ inches of ice. Concentrate your efforts in the flooded timber around the old creek channel. Bluegill - Good: Anglers are fishing in the flooded timber out by the creek channel. Crappie - Good: Fish the same areas as for bluegills. Look about 2 to 3 feet off the bottom.

Lake of the Hills

Ice conditions have improved. Good numbers of anglers are out on the ice. Try different baits/locations/depths until you find fish. Bluegill - Slow: Anglers are catching a few small bluegills. Crappie - Slow: Mostly smaller fish concentrate your effort on the submerged tree piles.

Hannen Lake

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

Iowa Lake

Bluegill - Good: Fish around structure with a jig/wax worm. Crappie - Good: Fish around structure with a jig/wax worm. Crappies may be suspended, and most are running 7 to 9 inches.

Kent Park Lake

Bluegill - Fair: Fish around the brush with a jig/wax worm. Some decent sized bluegills have been caught.

Lake Macbride

There will be another riprap project on the lake this winter. The lake has been lowered approximately 8 feet for equipment access to shorelines and islands. Bluegill - Good: Anglers have been picking up bluegills on jigs and wax worms. Fish near the bottom around structure. Most fish are 5 to 7 inches. Crappie - Fair: Fish structure in the 10 to 15-foot range. A jig or small spoon tipped with a wax worm is best. The fish have been nice sized (many 10 to 12 inches).

Pleasant Creek Lake

White Bass - Fair: Some anglers are finding schools of white bass and catching them on small jigs, spoons, or minnows. Keep moving until a school is found. Bluegill - Fair: Try for gills around brush or the dam with a small jig and wax worm. Green or black seems to be producing best.

Diamond Lake

Channel Catfish - Slow: An occasional catfish is being picked up while fishing for panfish. Bluegill - Slow: Try around the dam and boat ramp areas that contain brush. Crappie - Slow: A few fish are being caught around deep brush down towards the dam end of the lake.

Otter Creek Lake

Crappie - Fair: A few nice crappies are being picked up in the deeper brush. Yellow Bass - Good: Use a small jig/wax worm or spoon to catch these plentiful fish. Keep moving until you find them.

Union Grove Lake

The lake's aeration system was turned on Dec. 21, so be aware of open water at the dam end of the lake. Bluegill - Fair: Fish in the 6 to 7-inch range are being caught around brush on ice jigs tipped with wax worms. Crappie - Slow: A few crappies are being picked up, especially towards dusk.

Coralville Reservoir

The ice is extremely variable and could be dangerous in some areas.

Lake Wapello

The lake was drained this summer but has been renovated and is being allowed to refill.

Red Haw Lake

The lake's ice is variable. Use caution if venturing out onto the ice. Bluegill - Good: Use tear drop jigs tipped with a wax worm. Try areas around submerged cedar trees. Some fish are up to 9 inches.

Lake Keomah

The ice is variable in thickness so use caution if heading out. The latest measurements have about 7 inches by the fishing pier and over by the dam. Out further there has been some open water as recently as last week so use caution. Very few anglers have been fishing.

Lake Miami

The ice thickness varies so use caution if venturing out onto the ice. Some areas have 5 inches. Very few anglers have been venturing out so far this winter. Remember the lake has been drawn down all year. Find areas with structure and try small jigs tipped with wax worms.

Lake Sugema

Use caution if venturing out. Ice thickness is variable. Bluegill - Slow: Use tear drop jigs tipped with a wax worm.

Rathbun Reservoir

The lake is frozen over. The bays and coves have more ice than the main lake. Use caution if venturing out because the ice thickness varies from place to place. The last measurements taken have about 10 inches in spots including Atwell's, Glenwood and the Dedication Site boat ramp. Honey Creek State Park will be closed this winter due to road construction. Crappie - Slow: Try using small jigs tipped with either a minnow or wax worms. Find areas with submerged structure for the best results. The Buck Creek area has been producing some crappies.

SOUTHWEST IOWA

Beaver Lake

Bluegill - Good: Beaver Lake is producing some decent bluegills through the ice this year. The larger ones being caught are 8 to 9 inches. Anglers are having success in 15 to 20 foot of water out from the dam and on the 9 to 15 foot ridge that runs south of the 40 foot hole across the lake from the boat ramp. Fish are being caught using wax worms and spikes. Crappie - Fair: With the bluegills, anglers are picking up a few decent crappies up to 11 inches.

Jacob Krumm Nature Preserver Lake (west)

Bluegill - Good: Good bluegills up to 8.5 inches are being caught on wax worms. Best luck has been near the edges of the standing timber in the deeper water. Crappie - Good: Good numbers of crappie are also being caught near the standing timber. The crappie are averaging 8 to 9 inches.

Rock Creek Lake

Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are doing well late in the afternoon and into the evening. Fish have moved to the structure in the deepest water, which is 14 to 16 feet. Crappie - Fair: Crappie are being caught along with the bluegills in 12 feet of water or more. The better crappie bite is in the evening. Pink and white with wax worm is working well. The average size of fish caught is 7 to 9 inches.

Roberts Creek Lake

Crappie - Slow: A few crappies are being caught in the deeper water out from the east access.

Big Creek Lake

Bluegill - Good: Anglers are catching some good bluegills from 7 to 9 inches mostly midday through late afternoon. They are being caught off sunken brush in the main lake and in front of the deeper coves. Depths around 20 feet or greater have been best. Both wax worms and spikes have been working. Crappie - Good: Crappie are being caught near the roadbed in 30 to 40 feet of water off the east roadbed out from the Ensign shelter and into the handicap pier bay. Live minnows have been working best but glow jigs with wax worms have also been working. The bite has been best from 5:30 to 10 p.m.

Hickory Grove Lake

Bluegill - Good: The bluegill bite is good late in the afternoon and especially just before and after sunset near sunken habitat. This habitat can be found in most of the coves and in deeper water out from the points. The bluegills are around 8 inches and are being caught using both wax worms and maggots. Crappie - Fair: A few crappies are being pulled off the same sunken habitat as the bluegills. Better crappie are being caught suspended in the deeper water in the evenings, with some measuring 10 to 11 inches.

Hooper Area Pond

Crappie - Fair: There are reports of anglers doing well on crappie.

Lake Ahquabi

Bluegill - Slow: The bluegill bite is still slow. Out from the steep shoreline across from the beach area can be a good location. There are several large brush piles sunk in the deeper water here that anglers have been catching fish off. Ahquabi can produce some large bluegills over 9 inches.

Lake Petoka

Rainbow Trout - Good: Rainbow trout will be stocked through the ice in conjunction with a kid’s ice fishing event on Saturday, January 16. The event will begin at 10 a.m. with trout being stocked around noon.

Banner Lake (south)

Rainbow Trout - Good: Rainbow trout were stocked through the ice on Jan. 14.

As of Jan. 13, most central Iowa lakes have 13 plus inches of ice. Fishing success is picking up with the stable weather. Most fish are being caught in the afternoon and evenings. Contact Ben Dodd or Andy Otting at 515-432-2823 for information on the above area lakes and rivers.

Greenfield Lake

Greenfield lake has a consistent 12 inches of ice. Greenfield is a popular ice fishing lake because of the quality panfish fishery. Bluegill - Slow: Bluegills have been slow using wax worms.

Nodaway Lake

Nodaway Lake should offer good crappie fishing this winter with a large year class in the 8 to 9-inch range. Bluegills are 7 inches.

Littlefield Lake

Spring sampling showed a large year class of crappies that should be in the 8 to 9-inch range this winter. Roads in the park have been plowed.

Lake Anita

Lake Anita will offer excellent ice fishing opportunities this year. Fall samples show that bluegills and crappies experienced good growth in 2009. Anita has 12 to 14 inches of ice. Bluegill - Fair: The bluegill bite is much better the last hour of daylight. Anglers are catching many fish exceeding 8 inches using wax worms. Crappie - Fair: The best success has been fishing with minnows in the evening. Best success is late afternoon to after dark. Crappies are running 9 to 10 inches.

Lake Manawa

Manawa has 14 inches of ice. Crappie - Slow: Crappies have slowed but anglers are still catching a few. Jigs with small spinner tipped with a live minnow is working best.

Anderson Area Pond 1

Anderson Area Pond 1 is very susceptible to runoff. The road to the pond has been plowed. Bluegill - Slow: Anglers are catching 8-inch bluegill on tear drops tipped with wax worms. Crappie - Slow: Anglers are catching 10-inch fish in late afternoon using minnows.

Cold Springs District Farm Ponds

Farm ponds offer excellent opportunity for quality ice fishing in southern Iowa . Remember to always ask permission before fishing a private pond. Bluegill - Fair: Typically bluegills can be found in the deepest part of the pond. Tip small jigs with wax worms and start fishing a foot off the bottom. Crappie - Fair: Fish the larger farm ponds using wax worms or minnows. Fish different depths in the water column as crappie can be suspended.

Temperatures are expected to warm in the coming week making an ice fishing trip more enjoyable. Anglers can expect to find 14 to 18 inches of ice on most lakes in southwest Iowa . For more information contact Bryan Hayes or Mark Boucher at the Cold Springs District Office 712-769-2587.

Lake Icaria

Ice is 12 to 14 inches thick in most areas. Recent open portions could have ice less than 2 inches. Bullhead - Good: Anglers have been catching bullheads on wax worms from most areas. Bluegill - Good: Most bluegills have been caught from flooded timber and brush piles using wax worms. Crappie - Good: Crappies have been caught from the flooded timber and along creek channel. Both wax worms and minnows have been productive. Walleye - Fair: Wax worms and small minnows have been successful for small and mid-sized walleyes in the flooded timber and near creek channel.

Fogle Lake S.W.A.

Ice thickness is 12 to 14 inches, and some thinner areas may exist. Bluegill - Fair: Several mid-sized bluegills have been caught from the deeper flooded timber.

Lake of Three Fires

Ice is 12 to 14 inches in most areas, but some thinner areas may exist. Bluegill - Fair: A few fish have been caught from the deep brush pile north of the center of the dam. Crappie - Fair: A few crappies have been caught from the deep brush pile north of the center of the dam.

Three Mile Lake

Ice thickness varies. Most ice is 12 to 14 inches thick. Bluegill - Fair: Anglers are having some success fishing the creek channels near flooded timber. Most fish are 12 to 20 feet in depths. Crappie - Fair: Some crappie are being caught in 14 to 20 feet of water near the rock piles and in flooded timber. Yellow Perch - Fair: Large numbers of perch have been caught in the main lake if anglers can find a school. Wax worms and minnows are working once they are found. Walleye - Fair: Some large walleyes with one over 10 pounds have been caught near the creek channel. Minnows are working the best.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake

Ice thickness varies. Reports indicate that the ice is 12 to 14 inches in most areas. Bluegill - Good: Several mid-sized and large fish have been caught from the creek channel areas near flooded timber. Most fish are coming from 10 to 16 feet down. Crappie - Fair: Crappies have been caught from flooded timber and rock piles in water from 10 to 25 feet down. Minnows have been working best. Walleye - Fair: Several mid-sized walleye have been caught from deeper rock areas, creek channel, and old road bed. Minnow have been working best.

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Check out thew NW Iowa forum for a lot of info on Spirit Lake and Okoboji.

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No fishing report, but isn't it GREAT that we are finally melting some snow! grin Hopefully we will have some open water soon. Most of the interior rivers and a lot of ice around the shore yet, but soon!

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Fished Clear Lake yesterday from 10-4. Water temps ranged from 49 to 54 degrees. Muskies were in pre-spawn mode in 2-5 FOW. We had one lazy follow and saw a few others holding tight to shoreline structure.

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Almost all fish in Lake Delhi have moved off the bank and into the main channel. Some have not, but anglers are having a hard time getting those to bite.

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I went over my fishing journal (this is why I keep such things grin ), and checked when I first got out on the ice fishing in southeast Iowa.

I moved down to Iowa City from Minnesota in 2001, but my first few winters here I was usually busy, and did not get out on the ice as early as I could have, so I threw those years out. Here are my first ice fishing trips in and around Johnson County since December of 2005: I included both the first time I got out on small ponds, which freeze up quickly, and Lake Macbride, which being a good deal larger and deeper takes longer to freeze:

2005: I first ice-fished a pond on December 8

2006: I first ice-fished a pond on December 8; this was the year a heat wave hit in mid-December, taking out all the ice around Coralville until after New Years

2007: I first ice-fished a pond on December 6; Macbride on December 16

2008: I first ice-fished a pond on December 11; Macbride on December 17

2009: I first ice-fished a pond on December 11; Macbride on December 27

The first ice dates down here seem to be pretty consistent; if the long-range forecasts for Iowa City are right, it'll probably be until at least December 6 before I do any ice fishing in Johnson County this year, too.

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I would say there will be limited access on the IGL around the 4th with access to almost everything by the following week.

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I was in Ruthven On saturday duck hunting. Trumbull was completely froze over with skim ice. Virgin & Elk were getting ice around the edges. If we keep the cold, by this next weekend on small protected ponds and slews we could be Ice fishing. By Dec 4, we should be Ice fising for sure.

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Skim ice on a small sheltered pond in Coralville this morning! grin

Based on the forecasts it will be at least two weeks before any icefishing goes on down here, though.

I could have sworn there was a year I started fishing small ponds down here on December 1 or 2, but either I didn't write it down or it didn't happen.

I know there was one winter a few years ago where we got a major cold snap at the very end of November, but as soon as the waters froze a foot of snow got dumped on top of them, and we had to sit through a week of single-digit highs that didn't make any safe ice because of that insulating snow.

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We had skim ice on most of the ponds around Iowa City before the warm spell hit Sunday; it was all gone by Monday afternoon when it started raining. The larger ponds around here are still open.

The good news is I just checked a small sheltered pond (any smaller and it wouldn't have fish in it) this morning that is 95% iced over. grin I did not bother checking ice thickness, as I am sure it is just skim, but I am hoping that if the temps stay just on the cold side of what they are forecast for the next two days I may be able to get out on the ice in Johnson County this weekend.

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just driving over the resevoir on 380 and there looks to be at least skim ice covering the majority of what you can see from the road in both directions.

anybody been to McBride yet? I'm assuming if coralville is locking up then is has to be too?

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Welcome to HSO!

I was told there was skim ice on some of the coves on Macbride last weekend, but I am sure that was gone Monday, too.

As of this morning the larger ponds in Iowa City are still open, with just a little skim on the very edge, so I would be very surprised if there was ice anywhere on Macbride besides the small coves. Macbride is usually still open when I am getting out on even the larger ponds around here.

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I just moved to Iowa city from Ames last year, just about when it was time to fish. I did some exploring of McBride a bit with the sonar and fished a few days but didnt get into much (some bass and crappie's mostly). it was just easier to drive back to the honey holes in des moines that I've been fishing for years.

I'm probably going to put in some more time this year. it doesn't seem like there is many people fishing out there in the winter? maybe it's just me going out on weekdays, but you'd think that place would be full of people.

It's snowing right now, lets hope there isn't much accumulation so we can get some good ice built!

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The last two winters Macbride was drawn down about 8' from its normal level to repair flood damage on the roads around the lake; I can't speak for anyone else, but I didn't fish Macbride much the last two winters because most of my spots were too shallow.

Macbride is not always the easiest lake to fish, regardless of the season, but when everything does come together--weather, location, bait, etc.--it is a very good lake. Crappie are the staple, with walleye, channel cat, and wipers all coming through the ice as well.

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I have to go to north libety anyway this afternoon, so I'll head over to McBride and see what things are looking like. will post what I find later on tonight

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looks like the res has skim ice covering the majority of it

MacBride has absolutely nothing. maybe a bit of skim in the coves along the shore but with today being right around freezing and sunny that will ikely be gone.

we need it to get cold, and fast!

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I've been griping on the SE Minnesota forums about the snow that got dumped up there over night, thereby screwing up both ice making and my weekend plans.

The good news is most of that snow passed north of Iowa City; as of now we have maybe an inch at most here, and it is mostly done. I'd rather have no snow at all, but with the cold temps coming now an inch on top of the ice shouldn't slow things down that much. The deer hunters should like it, too.

We had at least skim ice on even the deeper ponds in Johnson County yesterday; my guess is I'll be out on some smaller ponds by Wednesday.

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I checked several ponds yesterday morning and just now this afternoon; all of the ones I looked at were froze over by Thursday.

One pond I usually hit first each winter had about 2" of ice yesterday near shore, and about 2.5" today. If I were my high school playing weight I would have gone out farther and fished, but these days I weigh close to 300 lbs. with all my gear on, so I decided to wait and check again tomorrow afternoon. grin The ice near shore held me up, but I could hear a little cracking going on.

A couple other ponds (deeper, more open to the wind) had less ice, maybe an inch yesterday at shore, and an inch and a half today. That ice cracked pretty badly when I put my weight on it.

We only have a dusting of light snow, maybe an inch at most, but it is still affecting ice growth. There was a thin layer of water and slush beneath that light snow this afternoon, which means it is still insulating the ice enough to slow things down.

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same story here eyehunter. checked a pond of mine between IC and riverside and there looks to be about 2.5 - 3. I typically wont fish on less than 4", so I think I'll give it a few more days. the next couple nights are supposed to be pretty cold, so hopefully that will firm things up.

looks like we'll have to wait a little while to get out on any big water though.

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    •   I would definitely get the one with the Pheasant plowing attachment! Beats walking the fields!
    • Never getting rid of my Suburban. Just looking for a new toy for hunting etc. that I can drive down narrow dirt roads up north. Another reason why I would rather buy a slightly used one so I can use it without worrying about putting a few scratches on it. Those side by sides look like fun but you have to haul them around and cant drive them everywhere. And they just aren't built to take what a Jeep can. Always kind of liked the looks of Jeeps and being able to remove the top in the summer is nice to. Would definitely want a hard top to as the soft tops aren't to good for MN winters. I'm sure the newer ones have better heaters than the older ones as I remember back in the day guys were dressed like they were snowmobiling while driving their Jeep. And scraping frost off of the window to see.
    • I went through the same thing. I had ATV's at first then bought an RZR. It was fun but honestly the quality for the price is pretty bad. You can go up to a Can Am but then the price is even worse. So a few years after I sold the RZR I got the itch again but then started looking at the Wranglers and ended up doing that. I bought a 2006 with the 4.0 and after that and buying a used 6.6' plow I was into it for less than 13.5k and can drive it everywhere.   I have the hardtop on mine. I just take it off in the summer and drive it when it's nice. IMHO it's the way to go but you need to watch out for ones that are rusted out. I take the doors off, the top off and drive around sniping gophers, head to the lake or just cruise around. I like the 32" BFG KO tires.     
    •   What's a big guy like you going to do with a little SUV?  Your still keeping the truck to pull that new trailer right?
    • Good luck, have fun and stay topside this time of year.
    • Did you have to sand in between coats of lacquer? I was going to use a pre catalyzed lacquer for a little more durability, but it seems like it would take forever to get in all of the grooves. 
    • Some of the older ones had a 4 cylinder. Think the new ones only have a 6 now.
    • White pine needs bud caps to survive.     DNR had this publication you might find interesting managing_woodland_deer.pdf   Here is another link.... from extension   http://www.myminnesotawoods.umn.edu/2007/04/minnesota-woodlands-and-wildlife-strategies-and-species/   Balsam fir and spruce are good if we ever have another bad winter....
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