Northwest Iowa — The Iowa Department of Natural Resources has released their weekly fishing report for northwest Iowa. This weekly fishing report is compiled from information gathered from local bait shops, angler creel surveys and county and state parks staff. You can check the activity of your favorite lake or stretch of river, including which species are being caught, a rating of the bite (slow, fair, good or excellent), as well as a hot bait or lure pattern.
Black Crappie – Fair: Try minnows on a small jig fished in deeper water near structure. Bluegill – Fair: Look for bluegills in deeper water near structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try a variety of bass baits along weed edges.
Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is in the upper 70’s. Lake level is about 10 inches below the crest of the spillway. Black Crappie – Fair. Some black crappie are still being picked up along Ice House Point near woody structure and from the fish house. Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Slow: Use a twister thrown from shore or a leech or live minnow fished under a bobber along Ice House Point, the north shore and along shore near the outlet. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try traditional bass baits fished along shore in areas with rocks or vegetation or along docks.
Brushy Creek Lake
Water levels are at the crest of the spillway. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a small jig and crawler or minnow under a bobber along shore or drifted near structure in 10-15 feet of water. Bluegill – Fair: Look for bluegills nesting up in near shore areas. Pick up fish in 10-15 feet of water. Walleye – Slow: Use a live minnow or leech fished near rock and woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Good Try weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures anywhere with woody structure. Black Crappie – Fair: Some crappie are still being found near shore, but most are being picked up in about 15 feet of water.
Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water clarity is around 3 to 5 feet in most areas. Channel Catfish – Good: Use cut bait or troll crankbaits along shore; catfish are spawning. Walleye – Fair: The shore bite has slowed. Anglers are still picking up fish mid-lake while trolling along the dredge cuts using crankbaits and spinners with crawlers during mid-day. If fishing from shore, try a leech or crawler fished under a bobber in areas with a rocky substrate in the evening or after dusk. White Bass – Fair: Troll along the dredge cuts with crankbaits and spinners with crawlers. Anglers are also picking up fish from shore with crawlers fished under a bobber. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Pick up largemouth bass along shore in areas with vegetation and along docks with traditional bass lures or weedless lures. Bluegill – Fair: Try minnows or crawlers fished on a small jig under a bobber near vegetation edges and along docks.
Swan Lake (Carroll County)
Bluegill: Fair: Fish are 7- to 8-inches. Use a small jig fished under a bobber near shore. Black Crappie: Fair: Fish are 6- to 10-inches. Most have moved off shore. Largemouth Bass: Fair.
Water temperatures are in the upper 70’s in most district lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.
Black Crappie – Slow: Try a small minnow or tube jig fished from the causeway. Best bite is early morning. Yellow Bass – Fair: Drift fish a tube jig. Bluegill – Good: Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber near shore.
Water temperature is in the lower to mid-70’s. Bluegill – Good: Try a small piece of crawler below a bobber in open areas of vegetation near shore. Walleye – Fair: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation on the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a leech on the rock reefs. Shore anglers are having success fishing minnows from docks. Best bite is early morning. Yellow Bass – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a piece of crawler or cut bait fished on the rock reefs. Best bite is early morning. Channel Catfish – Fair.
Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small minnow or tube jig fished on the outside edge of the vegetation or along the old road bed. Bluegill – Fair: Use a piece of crawler under a bobber fished near the vegetation edge. Largemouth Bass – Fair.
Anglers are catching crappies and bluegills along the shoreline rocks. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Channel Catfish – Slow: Try a crawler fished near the rocky shore by the outlet.
Lower Pine Lake
Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Try fishing near the woody habitat and the edge of vegetation. Bluegill – Good: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber near shore. Black Crappie – Fair.
Use a kayak to access open areas in the vegetation or try fishing off the dock by the beach. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber near shore. Yellow Perch – Fair.
Silver Lake (Worth)
Use a kayak to access open areas in the vegetation. Bluegill – Fair. Largemouth Bass – Fair.
Upper Pine Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Drift fish a tube jig in the deeper area of the lake. Early morning bite is best. Bluegill – Good: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber near shore. If you don’t get a bite right away, try slowly reeling in your bobber. Largemouth Bass – Fair.
For information on the lakes and rivers in north central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.
East Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 79 degrees. Leeches or worms with a slip bobber are a simple way to get some success out fishing. Fish are moving off shore; fishing by boat is best. Black Crappie – Fair: Try fishing close to docks and hoists. Trolling weed lines has been successful for many anglers. Crappie are hard to target specifically, but can be caught mixed with other panfish. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill have started to move off their beds out of the shallows. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Pumpkinseed – Good: Fun and easier to catch from most docks. Use a small hook, bobber and piece of worm.
Lost Island Lake
Anglers have had consistent success with yellow perch and a few other species. Yellow Perch – Good. Bluegill – Fair. Black Crappie – Fair. Walleye – Fair.
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weedlines, as well as fishing docks and hoists near shore. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good.
Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Silver Lake is starting to green up due to an algae bloom. Walleye – Fair.
The water temperature is 79 degrees. The walleye bite has been hit-or-miss most nights. The day bite has been fair to poor unless you’re right on top of them. Bluegill are starting to sit on beds. Bluegill are moving off their beds to deeper water. Yellow Perch – Fair: Bites from morning till 11:00 and mid-afternoon have been seen. Depths vary depending on the time of day. Walleye – Fair: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk. Use slip bobbers along weed edges.
West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 77 degrees. Fish are moving just off shore, making shore fishing harder. Anglers slowly trolling weedlines have been successful catching a variety of species. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill are starting to be found in shallower water as they move off their beds. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Black Crappie – Fair: Hard to target specifically, but crappie can be caught while picking through other panfish.
Fish are moving just off shore making trolling and fishing by boat your best bet for success. The panfish/perch bite has been very good lately. The extended forecast calls for continued warm temperatures with highs in the 70’s and 80’s. Water temperatures have risen significantly with most in the 70’s to 80’s. This quick increase has been tough on fish that are already stressed due to spawning. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.