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 nesting along shore in areas 2-6 feet deep. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try a variety of bass baits along weed edges.
Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is around 80 degrees. Lake level is about 7 inches below the crest of the spillway. Black Crappie – Fair. Some black crappie are still being picked up along the shore of Ice House Point near woody structure and from the fish house. Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Fair: Walleye bite has slowed with the heat. 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 – Good: Try traditional bass baits fished along shore in areas with rocks or vegetation or along docks.
Walleye – Fair: Anglers are catching some walleye from the new fishing pier with a live minnow under a bobber. Try slow trolling a spinner baited with a minnow.
Brushy Creek Lake
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. Walleye – Fair: Use a live minnow or leech near rock and woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures anywhere with woody structure.
Crawford Creek Impoundment
Water temperature is in the upper 70’s. Water clarity is around 15 feet. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills up to 9 inches are on nests along shore in 1-4 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try weedless lures along vegetation edges.
Moorehead Park Pond
Water clarity is around 9 feet. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills are nesting in near shore areas. Fish are 7- to 8-inches.
Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water temperatures are in the upper 70’s. Water clarity is about 8 feet. If fishing from shore, after dusk or low light conditions may be most productive with the water clarity. Offshore bite for walleye and white bass has picked up. Channel Catfish – Good: Use cut bait or troll crankbaits along shore; catfish are spawning. Walleye – Good: Walleye fishing has been productive in the main lake all times of the day and along shore after dusk. Try trolling crankbaits and spinners with crawlers along the dredge cuts. If fishing from shore, try a leech 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.
Swan Lake (Carroll County)
Water temperatures is around 80 degrees. Water clarity is around 2 feet. 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.
Briggs Woods Lake
Water temperature is in the low 70’s. Bluegill – Good: Bluegills are on the beds near shore. Try a small piece of crawler or jig in 2-3 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Fair.
Water temperature is in the lower 80’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 – Slow: Anglers are still catching fish around the Island; use small hair jigs. Best bite is at first light.
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.
Lower Pine Lake
Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Try fishing near the woody habitat. Bluegill – Good: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber near shore.
Upper Pine Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try small jigs or a minnow fished near the downed trees. 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.
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. The curlyleaf pondweed has started to die back allowing for easier fishing and promoting native aquatic vegetation to grow. Leeches or worms with a slip bobber are a simple way to get some success out fishing with kids. Try this setup in about 8 feet or less of water. The current water temperature is 60 degrees. 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 are starting to make beds in 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 this spring. 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 lake has started to green up significantly due to an algae bloom. The walleye bite has been hit-or-miss most nights. The day bite has been poor. Bluegill are starting to sit on beds. The water temperature is 79 degrees. Yellow Perch – Fair. Walleye – Fair: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk.
West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 75 degrees. Try fishing for panfish in 8 feet or less and around docks and hoists. Anglers slowly trolling weedlines have been successful catching a variety of species. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill are starting to be found in shallower water and around docks and hoists. 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.
The day bite trolling for walleye in the area has been very slow. The panfish/perch bite has been very good lately. The extended forecast calls for continued warm temperatures with highs in the 80’s and 90’s. Water temperatures have risen significantly with most being in the 70’s to 80’s. This quick increase has been tough on fish that are already stressed due to spawning. This has caused noticeable mortality of some fish. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.