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 walleye trolling crankbaits and fishing leeches in the dredge cuts. Those fishing in 10-12 feet of water are having the best luck. Channel Catfish – Fair: Anglers are catching catfish using dip baits, cut bait, and chicken liver; some have been picked up with leeches. White Bass – Fair: White bass are being caught on crankbaits while fishing for walleyes.
Walleye – Fair: A few anglers have reported good success on docks in the early morning. Anglers fishing docks should fish right under and in the shade of the docks for fish using docks for cover. Some keeper size walleyes have been caught in open water pockets of the reed beds. Muskellunge – Good. Yellow Bass – Good: Anglers fishing the main lake reefs, particularly the state artificial reef, having been doing well. Larger sized ones are being caught (8-8.5 inches). Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers have been catching a few largemouths with plastic worms near the edges of vegetation in the little lake. Crappie – Fair: Anglers have pulled some crappies off of the hauled out state rock reef. Channel Catfish – Fair: A few catfish have been caught at dark or early morning on the little lake.
Bluegill – Good: Bluegills are schooled up 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. Throwing spinner baits or soft plastics for the aggressive males will produce bites.
Big Spirit Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass can be found near weed choked areas as they are protecting their fry. Fish are being caught in trickles using top water frogs. Anglers are also catching bass on boat hoists along the north banks in the deeper water. Try crankbaits or swimbaits to pull these bass out from under the hoists. 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 jigging raps, bobber and leech, or just jigging a leech. Walleyes are also being caught along the weed line in Anglers bay in 16-17 feet of water. This weed line runs east to west and larger walleyes are swimming along this edge. Try fishing jigs tipped with a leech. Yellow Perch – Fair: Anglers are reporting a perch bite in 20 feet of water off cottonwood point. Successful anglers are using small jigs tipped with wigglers, red worms, or wax worms. These fish aren’t relating to any cover or weed lines. 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. The most successful anglers are leaving the worm on the bottom and fishing around submerged vegetation. Northern Pike – Good: Anglers using weedless frogs or surface lures back in the north grade in the dense weeds are catching smaller northerns.
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 for them. Anglers fishing under the highway 9 bridge are catching fair numbers of yellows using small plastic minnows. Yellow Perch – Fair: Numbers of 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 to find a fast paced bass bite. 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. Bluegill – Fair: Anglers are catching low numbers of 8 inch bluegills while fishing docks throughout East Okoboji. Anglers are fishing small jigs under docks tipped with wax worms.
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. Yellow Perch – Fair: While setting hoop nets yellow perch were seen in the 10+ inch range in the west end of Silver Lake. Higher numbers of 8-9 inch perch have been seen in nets in the north bay. Channel Catfish – Fair: While setting hoop nets there were over a dozen 5-6 pound channel catfish caught. These fish were found along the west shore of the south bay.
West Okoboji Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth can be found under boat hoists, near weed lines, and on the drop offs. Fish these spots with football jigs, crankbaits, or Texas rigs. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Smallmouths have moved off beds and are headed towards the rocky drop offs. Areas to fish should include rock points that shoot out into the main basin of West Lake, Pillsbury, Fort Dodge, and Gull Point. Fish with jerk baits, football jigs, swimbaits. Walleye – Fair: A number of interviewed anglers fishing off Manhattan point after dark are reporting an increase in quality non-slot walleyes. Anglers are trolling deep diving crankbaits and as they come up the point they are picking up these walleyes. Yellow Bass – Good: In Smiths bay just north of the amusement park anglers are reporting a high catch rate of large yellow bass. Anglers using orange twister tails or plain hook with worm and split shot are catching yellows on every cast. Yellow Perch – Fair: Quality perch (8-10 inch) can be found in the shallows where substrate is exposed. Fish with wigglers and a small jig at Breezy point, Pillsbury, or Fort Dodge.
Five Island Lake
Walleye – Fair: Anglers fishing just north of town bay are catching 14-1 7inch walleye. Anglers using bottom bouncers are stumbling upon numbers of walleyes as they approach the shallows.