Spirit Lake, Iowa — The Iowa Department of Natural Resources issues a weekly fishing report on Thursdays in an effort to provide the latest information heading into the weekend. The weekly fishing report is compiled from information gathered from local bait shops, angler creel surveys, and county and state parks staff. For more information contact the Spirit Lake fish Hatchery at 712-336-1840.
Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)
Boaters should use caution around the dredge barge, booster pump barge, and pipeline. Walleye regulations for Storm Lake are three fish per day, all fish between 17 and 22 inches must be released and only one over 22 inches may be kept. Walleye – Fair: Anglers are picking up 11 to 13 inch and 17 to 20 inch walleye. Most are having success trolling crankbaits in the dredge cuts between the islands on the east side of the lake. Others have had success fishing in 4-6 feet of water along the south shore using crankbaits and leeches. Channel Catfish – Fair: Successful anglers are using dip baits and crawlers. Fish the north shore areas, especially in the Circle Park area and the island near Circle Park. White Bass – Fair: White bass are being caught on spinners and crankbaits while fishing for walleyes. Anglers are also having luck fishing spinners and crankbaits in shallower areas near shore.
Bluegill – Excellent: Bluegills are schooled off the jetties. Bluegills are very large with many 7-8 inch fish. Fish a worm and bobber. Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth are beginning to bed in the shallows along the south banks in shallower water. Throw spinner baits or soft plastics for the aggressive males.
Big Spirit Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Fish are bedding along the north banks. Fish that are bedding can be caught using drop shots placed around the bed or larger Texas rigged baits. Use a lighter color to keep your bait visible. Walleye – Good: Local anglers are catching walleye around 5:00 till dark at the North Grade. Fish above and below the slot are being caught and creeled. Successful anglers are using dark deer hair jigs tipped with. Yellow Perch – Fair: The fishing pier at the grade is producing more 6-8 inch perch for anglers willing to sort through bullheads and bluegill. Successful anglers are using jig heads and wax worms. Crappie – Fair: Crappies over 10 inches are becoming a common catch at the north grade. Anglers are using minnows below bobbers anywhere along the grade. The old footbridge site is turning on as well. Anglers are pulling minnows parallel with the rocks to bring crappies into their baskets. Anglers fishing this location are catching larger numbers but less respective in size. These fish are 8-10 inches. Black Bullhead – Fair: The bullhead bite at the north grade is slowing. Creeled anglers are taking home single digits. These fish are 12-14 inches. Successful anglers are leaving the worm on the bottom and fishing around submerged vegetation. Northern Pike – Fair: Creeled anglers are catching northerns while trolling around vegetation just before dark. Most creeled northerns are in the 30 inch range but in low numbers.
Bluegill – Fair: 6-8 inch bluegill are being caught in low numbers along the north. Use small lipstick jigs tipped with a night crawler. Crappie – Good: Smaller crappies are being caught on the north and east side of the lake. Anglers are using jigs tipped with wax worms.
East Okoboji Lake
Yellow Bass – Good: Large numbers of yellow bass are being caught near East Okoboji beach near the boat docks. Fish vary from small to a few larger 8-9 inch fish. Throw soft plastic shad. Anglers fishing under the Highway 9 bridge are catching fair numbers of yellows using small plastic minnows. Yellow Perch – Fair: Smaller yellow perch are being caught while anglers are fishing for yellow bass. Pulling similar baits near the bottom will force more perch into your bucket. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Fish near the inlet to upper gar along the rocks. Anglers are seeing bass bedding up in upper gar then swimming into East Okoboji. Walleye – Fair: Parks Marina and Lone Tree Point are reporting a hot bite for walleye. Anglers are drifting minnows along the bottom before dark. Larger walleye are being caught in 10-12 feet of water.
Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye – Good: Anglers are catching limits of walleye on Silver Lake in Lake Park. Many anglers are catching limits using leeches, crankbaits while trolling, or slip bobbers with minnows. Anglers are catching these fish throughout the water body.
West Okoboji Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth bass are schooled in the warm water of the canals and harbors as they enter their pre-spawn. Many male bass are already on beds while females are still out swimming the depths. Males are being caught on trick worms, wacky rigs, and drop shots. Females are enjoying jig, and deep diving cranks. Bluegill – Good: The canals are loaded with bluegills. Good numbers of large and small fish are being. Pocahontas Point is holding a good population of bluegills with anglers catching large fish with little sorting. Crappie – Fair: The trestle is reported to be a good bite. The canals are starting to fill with larger crappies. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Smallmouths are on beds in bays with sandy cobble and larger boulders. These fish will be bedded near the larger rocks. Placing any soft plastics near the bed will result in a strike. Northern Pike – Good: Little Emerson and Little Millers are filled with northerns. Throw anything at this time and catch a few. Walleye – Good: Walleyes are being caught by shore anglers fishing the canal bridges after dark. Successful anglers are fishing darker crankbaits and bottom jigs with leeches. 13-19 inch fish are being caught. Yellow Bass – Good: Anglers are reporting a high catch rate of large yellow bass in Smiths bay just north of the amusement park. Use orange twister tails or a plain hook with worm and split shot.
Five Island Lake
Walleye – Fair: Anglers fishing just north of town bay are catching 14-17 inch walleye. Anglers using bottom bouncers are stumbling upon numbers of walleyes as they approach the shallows.
Lost Island Lake
Yellow Bass – Good: Large yellow bass can be caught at the outlet of little lake. They are being seen and caught under the overhang of the outlet structure. A large number of smaller fish can be caught near the bridge where Lost Island dumps into little lake. Black Bullhead – Excellent: A very large number of bullhead are being seen while crews are electrofishing on Lost Island. These large numbers of bullhead are being seen at the mouth of little lake just west of the bridge. Crappie – Fair: Crappies are starting to group in the shallow coves of little lake. They are swimming into the cattails in preparation for the spawn.