Northwest Iowa — Here is this week’s Fishing Report from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.
East Okoboji LakeIce thickness is around 17+ inches in most areas. The walleye season is closed. Black Crappie – Good: Try small jigs tipped with a minnow or tube jig and bobber. Bluegill – Good: Use tube jigs, plastics, or other small jigs. Northern Pike – Good: Tip-ups are working well. Yellow Perch – Fair: Minnows are working well; some sorting may be needed.
Five Island LakeUse caution; the lake aerator has been started up in Town Bay. Yellow Bass – Good.
Ingham LakeIce thickness is 17+ inches. Use caution; there is an open hole in the lake with the aerator in use. Walleye – Fair:
Lost Island LakeIce thickness is around 18 inches in most places. Black Crappie – Good. Walleye – Good.
Minnewashta LakeIce thickness is 18+ inches. Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Good.
Silver Lake (Dickinson)Ice thickness is around 17+ inches. Use caution; the lake aerator is in use. This creates an open hole on the east side of the lake. Walleye – Good: Best bite is at dusk.
Spirit LakeThe lake is entirely iced over with 16+ inches in most places. The best ice is on the south end and Anglers Bay. Most accesses are clear of heaves and snow. The walleye season is closed. Black Crappie -Good. Yellow Perch – Good: Use small jigs tipped with a minnow. Sorting may be needed.
West Okoboji LakeWest Okoboji is relatively free of any major heaves or hazards. The bluegill bite in Little Emerson Bay and out from Triboji has been slower; fish have been finicky. The walleye season is closed. Black Crappie – Fair: Try small jigs tipped with a minnow. Bluegill – Fair: Use tube jigs, plastics, or other small jigs. Yellow Perch – Fair: Try small jigs tipped with a minnow. Sorting may be needed.
Most lakes have 16 inches of ice, but shorelines and accesses have thinner ice due to runoff. Getting around the lakes has been easier after recent rain cut down on the majority of the snow cover. The walleye season on the Iowa Great Lakes is closed until May 6th. Permanent and non-permanent ice shacks must be removed from the ice when not occupied. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.