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Iowa Fishing Report

Iowa Fishing Report

NORTHWEST

June 30, 2022

Arrowhead Lake
Water clarity is good. Find bluegill and crappie in deeper habitat as their spawning season ends. Black Crappie – Fair: Look for crappie near structure and contour in 5-10 feet of water. Use a jig tipped with a crawler or a small minnow on a jig drifted over deeper habitat. Bluegill – Fair: Look for bluegill in 5-10 feet of water near woody structure.

Black Hawk Lake
Water levels are about 8 inches below the crest of the spillway. Surface water temperature is in the upper 70s to around 80 degrees. Black Crappie – Fair: Fish are 8- to 11-inches. Most fish have moved to more off shore areas, but can still be picked up along Ice House Point and around the fish house and stone piers in Town Bay. Bluegill – Fair: Find bluegills along shore near Ice House Point and the rock pile by Gunshot Hill.  Fish are 6- to 7-inches.

Browns Lake
Water levels remain low; use caution when launching boats. Find channel catfish along shore near rocky areas and downed trees.

Brushy Creek Lake
Surface water temperature is in the upper 70s. Black Crappie – Fair: Find crappie near submerged woody structure in 5-20 feet of water. Use a small jig tipped with a crawler or small minnow. Bluegill – Fair: Fish are moving off shore to deeper habitat. Use a small jig fished under a bobber in 5-15 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try plastics and traditional bass lures along submerged woody structure and weed lines near shore. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Crawford Creek Impoundment
Largemouth Bass
– Good: Catch largemouth bass along shore and weed lines with traditional bass baits.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Surface water temperature is in the upper 70s. All walleye between 19 and 25-inches must be immediately released unharmed at Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day. Black Crappie – Fair. Channel Catfish – Good: Anglers are catching fish from shore. Storm Lake has a good population of 4-6 pound catfish.  Try cut bait, liver or crawlers fished on the bottom along shore or minnows or crawlers fished under a bobber. Walleye – Fair: Boat anglers have had luck with crankbaits and crawler harnesses in the edges of the dredge cuts. Most walleye action is off shore in deeper water. Yellow Bass – Fair: Fish are 5- to 11-inches long.  Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber. Yellow Perch – Fair: Find perch along shore. Try crawlers or small minnows fished under a bobber near rocky shorelines.

Surface water temperature is in the upper 70s and low 80s. Panfish are moving off shore to deeper habitat in most lakes as their spawning season ends. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Clear Lake
The lake is 2.4 inches above crest. Water temperature is in the upper 70s.Water clarity is about 24 inches. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or crawlers on the bottom. Best bite is after sunset. Walleye – Good: Try fishing a slip bobber with live bait on the rock reefs or troll spinnerbaits near the vegetation edge. Yellow Bass – Slow.

Crystal Lake
Black Crappie
– Fair: Troll or drift fish a small jig or a minnow in the dredge cut.

Lower Pine Lake
Bluegill
– Good: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber near shore. Largemouth Bass – Fair.

Rice Lake
Bluegill
– Fair: Try a small piece of nightcrawler under a bobber in 2 to 3 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast crankbaits, spinnerbaits and jigs.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Bluegill
– Good: Bluegills are on their spawning beds. Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber near shore. Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass are biting on a variety of baits; try fishing near the edge of the vegetation.

Upper Pine Lake
Black Crappie
– Good: Drift fish or troll small jigs or minnows. Best bite is early morning. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber near shore. 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
Lake temperature is in the lower 80s. The water level is level with crest. Fish are moving shallower post-spawn. Trolling has been working very well. Find crappie and yellow bass in 10-16 feet of water. Try fishing weed lines where there is new vegetation growth. Black Crappie – Good: Best bite is in 10-15 feet of water along weed lines. Bluegill – Good. Walleye – Fair: Try spinners, crankbaits and long and shallow shad raps in the main basins. Best bite is an hour before and after sunset. Yellow Bass – Good.

Lost Island Lake
Fishing/trolling is getting more difficult as aquatic vegetation reaches the surface in many places. Black Crappie – Fair. Walleye – Slow: Try trolling crankbaits or with lindy rigs off weed lines. Best bite is an hour before and after sunset. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Bluegill and crappie fishing has been good; some sorting may be needed. Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Good.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
The late afternoon bite has been fair. Many anglers are targeting fish schools during the day. Vegetation growth is making fishing more difficult in many areas. Walleye – Fair: Try spinners, crankbaits and long and shallow shad raps.

Spirit Lake
Water temperature is in the upper 70s. The lake is 7 inches below crest. The walleye season is openBlack Bullhead – Good: Try fishing the northern grade of Spirit Lake. Black Crappie – Fair: Use a tube jig and bobber. Bluegill – Fair.  Walleye – Good: Use spinners, crankbaits and long and shallow shad raps; try to find weed lines. Yellow Perch – Fair: Many perch can be caught, you but may need to sort for size.

West Okoboji Lake
Water temperature is in the upper 70s. The water level is even with crest. Many fish are moving deeper post-spawn. Rocky points and areas with new vegetation growth have seen the most success. The walleye season is open. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Largemouth Bass – Fair. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Try fishing off points with surface baits or jerk baits. Walleye – Fair: Try fishing off points by trolling crankbaits or with lindy rigs. Best bite is an hour before and after sunset.

Most area lake temperatures have warmed into the upper 70s-80s over the last week. This week’s forecast calls for continued temperatures in the 80s. Water clarity is fairly good on most area lakes. Bass and panfishing is great on most lakes closer along weed lines in 10-15 feet of water. Most fish species are moving to deeper water as their spawning season ends. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

NORTHWEST IOWA FISHING REPORT

June 23, 2022

Arrowhead Lake
Water clarity is good. Find bluegill and crappie in deeper habitat as their spawning season ends. Black Crappie – Fair: Look for crappie near structure and contour in 5-10 feet of water. Use a jig tipped with a crawler or a small minnow on a jig drifted over deeper habitat. Bluegill – Fair: Look for bluegill in 5-10 feet of water near woody structure.

Black Hawk Lake
The dredge is working in the east basin of the lake. The floating and submerged portions of pipe is marked with buoys. Dredge barges are marked with buoys; boaters should use caution and stay away from the equipment and pipe. Water levels are about 8 inches below the crest of the spillway. Surface water temperature is in the upper 70s to around 80 degrees. Black Crappie – Fair: Fish are 8- to 11-inches. Most fish have moved to more off shore areas, but can still be picked up along Ice House Point and around the fish house and stone piers in Town Bay. Bluegill – Fair: Find bluegills along shore near Ice House Point and the rock pile by Gunshot Hill.  Fish are 6- to 7-inches.

Browns Lake
Water levels remain low; use caution when launching boats. Find channel catfish along shore near rocky areas and downed trees.

Brushy Creek Lake
Surface water temperature is in the upper 70s. Black Crappie – Fair: Find crappie near submerged woody structure in 5-20 feet of water. Use a small jig tipped with a crawler or small minnow. Bluegill – Fair: Fish are moving off shore to deeper habitat. Use a small jig fished under a bobber in 5-15 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try plastics and traditional bass lures along submerged woody structure and weed lines near shore. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Crawford Creek Impoundment
Largemouth Bass
– Good: Catch largemouth bass along shore and weed lines with traditional bass baits.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Surface water temperature is in the upper 70s. All walleye between 19 and 25-inches must be immediately released unharmed at Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day. Black Crappie – Fair. Channel Catfish – Good: Anglers are catching fish from shore. Storm Lake has a good population of 4-6 pound catfish.  Try cut bait, liver or crawlers fished on the bottom along shore or minnows or crawlers fished under a bobber. Walleye – Fair: Boat anglers have had luck with crankbaits and crawler harnesses in the edges of the dredge cuts.  A few walleye are still being picked up from shore in the evenings, but most action is in deeper water. Yellow Bass – Fair: Fish are 5- to 11-inches long.  Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber. Yellow Perch – Fair: Find perch along shore. Try crawlers or small minnows fished under a bobber near rocky shorelines.

Surface water temperature is in the upper 70s and low 80s. Panfish are moving off shore to deeper habitat in most lakes as their spawning season ends. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Clear Lake
The lake is 2.4 inches above crest. Water temperature is in the upper 70s.Water clarity is about 24 inches. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or crawlers on the bottom. Best bite is after sunset. Walleye – Good: Try fishing a slip bobber with live bait on the rock reefs or troll spinnerbaits near the vegetation edge. Yellow Bass – Slow.

Lower Pine Lake
Bluegill
– Good: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber near shore. Largemouth Bass – Fair.

Rice Lake
Bluegill
– Fair: Try a small piece of nightcrawler under a bobber near shore. Largemouth Bass – Good: Cast crankbaits, spinnerbaits and jigs.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Bluegill
– Good: Bluegills are on their spawning beds. Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber near shore. Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass are biting on a variety of baits; try fishing near the edge of the vegetation.

Upper Pine Lake
Black Crappie
– Good: Drift fish or troll small jigs or minnows. Best bite is early morning. Bluegill – Good: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber near shore. 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
Lake temperature is in the upper 70s. The water level is 3 inches over crest. Fish are moving shallower, making for great shoreline fishing. Trolling has been working very well. Find crappie and yellow bass in 10-16 feet of water. Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Good. Walleye – Fair: Try spinners, crankbaits and long and shallow shad raps in the main basins. Best bite is an hour before and after sunset. Yellow Bass – Good.

Lost Island Lake
Many anglers have been successful; some sorting may be needed depending on which species you are targeting.  Black Crappie – Good. Walleye – Fair: Try trolling crankbaits or with lindy rigs off weed lines. Best bite is an hour before and after sunset. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Bluegill and crappie fishing has been good; some sorting may be needed. Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Good.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
The late afternoon bite has been good. Many anglers are targeting fish schools during the day. Walleye – Fair: Try spinners, crankbaits and long and shallow shad raps.

Spirit Lake
Water temperature is in the upper 70s. The lake is 7 inches below crest. The walleye season is openBlack Bullhead – Good: Try fishing the northern grade of Spirit Lake. Black Crappie – Fair: Use a tube jig and bobber. Bluegill – Fair.  Walleye – Fair: Try spinners, crankbaits and long and shallow shad raps. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-70s. The water level is 3 inches over crest. The panfish bite has been good around docks and hoists; many species of fish are starting to move deeper as the spawning season eds. The walleye season is open. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Largemouth Bass – Fair. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Try fishing off points with surface baits or jerk baits. Walleye – Fair: Try fishing off points by trolling crankbaits or with lindy rigs. Best bite is an hour before and after sunset.

Most area lake temperatures have warmed into the 70s-80s over the last week with the warm weather. This week’s forecast calls for temperatures in the 80s which should continue to raise water temperatures. Water clarity is fairly good on most area lakes. Bass and panfishing is great on most lakes closer to shore and along weed lines. Many fish species will start to move to deeper water as their spawning season ends. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of May 5

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 within each district, 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. 

For current information, contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at the end of each district report.

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Lake level is low. Water temperature is around 52 degrees. Black Crappie – Fair: As water temperatures warm, look for crappie fishing to pick up along shore near woody structure. Use small jigs and minnows.

Black Hawk Lake
The dredge is working in the east basin of the lake. The floating and submerged portions of pipe is marked with buoys. Dredge barges are marked with buoys; boaters should use caution and stay away from the equipment and pipe.  Water levels are about 12 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water temperatures are in the low 50s. Water clarity is about 10 inches. Black Crappie – Fair: Most fish are 8- to 12-inches. Use small live minnows and marabou jigs fished from shore in Town Bay. Areas along the stone Pier floating T dock, the fish house and along Ice House Point are the most popular spots. Walleye – Slow: As water temperatures warm and fish move into shore and start feeding more aggressively, use twisters, jigs tipped with medium-sized minnows or shallow diving crankbaits from shore.

Brushy Creek Lake
Water temperatures remain cooler than normal.  Within the next week or two, look for crappie and bass action along shore in 5-10 feet of water near submerged woody structure.

North Twin Lake
Courtesy dock is in on the south ramp. With low water levels, boaters should use caution when launching boats. Black Crappie – Slow: Fishing action has been slow with the cooler water temperatures. Expect a better panfish bite from shore as water temperatures warm up. Use small jigs and minnows from shore and along the docks.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water temperatures are in the low 50s. Shore fishing has been fair to slow with the recent cool and rainy weather. All walleye between 19 and 25-inches must be immediately released unharmed at Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day. Black Crappie – Fair: Use small live minnows and small jigs along shore docks and lifts. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or liver fished on the bottom along shore. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been picked up from shore using a lead head with a twister tail.  Also try a jig with a crawler or tipped with a minnow.  Shallow diving crankbaits can also work well from shore. Evenings may be most productive.

Water temperatures are in the low 50s in most areas lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Clear Lake
The lake is 3.9 inches above crest. Water temperatures are in the low 50s. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or crawlers on the wind-swept shore and spots where water is flowing into the lake. Walleye – Fair: Use minnows and jigs in the rock reefs and wind-swept points. Wader angler are catching fish on the east shore and around the island. Best bite is after sunset. White Bass – Slow. Yellow Bass – Slow.  

Crystal Lake
Water temperatures are in the low 50s. Black Crappie – Slow.

Lake Cornelia
Channel Catfish
 – Fair: Fish the wind-swept shore with cut bait or crawlers. Yellow Bass – Slow.

Winnebago River
River levels are dropping. Northern Pike – Slow. Walleye – Slow: Try a jig and minnow in the current breaks below a dam.

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
Lake temperature is in the low 50s. The water level is 2 inches over crest. The walleye season opens May 7. There has been a fairly good crappie bite recently. Anglers using electronics have been fairly successful finding schools of fish. Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Black Crappie
 – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair.

Spirit Lake
Water temperature is in the high 40s. The lake is 20 inches below crest making launching boats more difficult. Courtesy docks are in place. The walleye season opens May 7Black Crappie – Fair: Use a tube jig and bobber. Bluegill – Fair.  Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-40s. The water level is 2 inches over crest. The walleye season opens May 7. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair.

Walleye weekend is May 7-8 in the Iowa Great Lakes. The walleye season opens back up May 7th for Spirit Lake, East Okoboji and West Okoboji. Most courtesy docks are in place. Area water temperatures are lower with the recent cold weather. The Spirit Lake Fish Hatchery currently has walleye and muskellunge eggs in the hatchery. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of April 21

New catch-photo-release tournament encourages Iowa walleye anglers to report their catches

Iowa DNR is partnering with My Catch by Angler’s Atlas to conduct a statewide walleye fishing tournament starting May 1 through June 30.

Win weekly prizes and help Iowa DNR expand walleye collection data by simply recording your catches. 

Register for the Iowa Walleye Challenge at https://www.anglersatlas.com/tournament/553/2022-iowa-walleye-challenge. There is a $25 fee to enter the tournament.

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 within each district, 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. 

For current information, contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at the end of each district report.

Clear Lake
The lake is at crest. Water temperatures are in the low 40s. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Channel Catfish – Slow: Fish the wind swept shore with cut bait. Walleye – Fair: Try minnows and jigs. Wader angler are catching fish on the east shore and around the island. White Bass – Fair.

Lake Cornelia
Channel Catfish
– Fair: Fish the windswept shore with cut bait. Yellow Bass – Slow.

Winnebago River
River levels continue to drop. Northern Pike – Slow. Walleye – Slow. 

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
Water temperature is in the high 40s. The water level is at crest elevation. The walleye season is closed. There has been a fairly good crappie bite recently. Anglers using electronics have been fairly successful with finding schools of fish. Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
The walleye season is closed. Black Crappie – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: ,

Spirit Lake
Water temperature is in the low 40s. The lake is 23 inches below crest making launching boats more difficult. Most courtesy docks are in place. The walleye season is closed. Black Crappie – Fair: Use a tube jig and bobber. Bluegill – Fair.  Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Water temperature is in the low 40s. The water level is even with crest. The walleye season is closed. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair.

The walleye season for the Iowa Great Lake chain is closed. The season opens back up May 7th. All area lakes are ice-free; many of the courtesy docks are in place. Area water temperatures are lower with the recent cold weather. The Spirit Lake Fish Hatchery currently has broodstock fish and eggs in the hatchery. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Unsafe iceice has degraded.

Black Hawk Lake
Most of the lake has opened up. Any remaining ice is unsafe.

Brushy Creek Lake
Unsafe iceice has degraded.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
There is a large area of open water around the big island near the south part of the lake.  Any remaining ice is unsafe.

Many area lakes are beginning to open up.  Any remaining ice is unsafe. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.


Clear Lake
Use caution if fishing near the winter aeration systems. Ice conditions change fast in these areas. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie have been caught in a variety of locations using small spoons and jigs. Best bite is dawn and dusk, but some can be caught throughout the day.Walleye – Good: Use a jigging spoon tipped with minnow heads and live minnows fished below bobbers. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Yellow Perch – Good: Use small jigs and spoons around vegetation.

Lake Cornelia
Ice is still okay for foot traffic.  Ice conditions will change rapidly with the forecast temperatures next week.

Rice Lake
Bluegill – Fair: Use small jigs tipped with waxworms and maggots. Yellow Perch – Fair: Try small jigs or spoons tipped with insect larvae or minnow heads. Sorting is needed to get the keeper-sized fish.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Use caution if fishing near the winter aeration system.

Ice conditions can change fast with warming temperatures. Check ice conditions often and use safety precautions when out on late season ice. For information on the lakes and rivers in north central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.


Center Lake
Ice thickness is around 11 inches. There is a large open hole where the aeration unit had been running throughout the winter.

East Okoboji Lake
Most of the lake is fully iced with an average of 14+ inches of ice allowing for safe ATV traffic in most areas. Be cautious of open holes, seams and access points. Panfishing has been good out from the Ritz; some sorting is needed. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics and baits. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Yellow Bass – Good: With a little movement on the basin, you should be able find a decent bite and also catch a few other species.

Ingham Lake
Ice conditions very heavily around the lake; most areas have 12 inches. There is a large open hole where the lake aeration unit had been running this winter. I

Lost Island Lake
Ice conditions vary with an average of around 12 inches. Caution: The aeration system is currently in operation on the east side of the lake out from the nature center. This creates a large open hole in the ice. Yellow Perch – Fair: Lots of sorting may be needed.

Minnewashta Lake
Ice conditions are safe enough to venture with ATVs with an average ice thickness of 14 inches. The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly good. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Pumpkinseed – Fair.

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked this winter; fish should be biting well. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Brook Trout – Good. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Ice thickness is around 12 inches. The lake has a large open hole along the eastern side; the eastern access is very diminished. Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
Ice thickness is 14+ inches in most places. There is a large open hole on the southwest side due to strong winds and a few days of warmer temperatures. The Marble Beach access is in very poor condition due to ice heaving along the shoreline. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Walleye – Slow: Season is closed until May 7th.  Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Ice thickness is 14+ inches in most places; there still are a handful of seams usually running from points. Know where trouble areas are before you venture on or off the ice. Panfishing has slowed a bit; with a little movement on the north end near Triboji, Emerson and Smiths Bay you may be able to catch a good amount of fish. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics or baits. Black Crappie – Fair: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Bluegill – Fair: Many anglers have been successful off Triboji on the north end of the lake. Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

The walleye season for the Iowa Great Lake chain is closed. The season opens back up May 7th. Most area lakes have 14+ inches of ice. Ice conditions are relatively safe in most areas; access around many lakes has diminished. Ice fishing season may not be around for much longer; the extended forecast calls for a week filled with warmer temperatures which will significantly diminish ice throughout the area. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of March 3

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
The winter aeration system in Town Bay is currently operating. Large areas are starting to open up; the top several inches of ice is rotten. Ice thickness is around 11 inches near the Ice House Point boat ramp; the top several inches is rotten. Use caution; avoid areas of thin ice and open water in the middle portion of the lake around Lakewood Point and the east basin.  Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Brushy Creek Lake
Ice conditions are extremely variable and are unknown in many areas. Use caution; ice will degrade fastest near shore and around trees.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Ice thickness is around 12-15 inches; the top portion of ice is starting to get rotten due to recent warm temperatures. Ice conditions are variable; use caution and check the ice thickness often. There is open water near the big and little islands. All walleye between 19 and 25-inches must be immediately released unharmed at Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day.  Walleye – Fair. White Bass – Fair.  Yellow Perch – Fair: Anglers are picking up fish; sorting is needed. Try minnows fished near the bottom.  Most action has been at the east end of the lake.

Ice conditions on area lakes vary from poor to fair. Ice fishing is not recommended on lakes in the southern part of the district. Some anglers are still making their way out on the bigger lakes. Use caution; precipitation over the weekend will further degrade the ice.  For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Ice thickness is 14 to 16 inches. Black Crappie – Slow.  Bluegill – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with waxworms. Yellow Bass – Slow.

Blue Pit
Ice thickness is 14 to 16 inches. Rainbow Trout – Fair: Try a bright colored jigging spoon tipped with spikes. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Clear Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 20 inches. Use caution at access areas; conditions can change fast with the warm weather and rain forecast. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a minnow or jigging spoon near the edge of rushes.  Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm or a plastic bait near the edge of rushes. Walleye – Good: Use a jigging spoon tipped with a minnow or cut bait in 8 to 10 feet of water. Best bite is after sunset.  Yellow Bass – Slow: Try a small jig tipped with bait in 8 to 10 feet of water. You have to stay mobile to find fish. Yellow Perch – Good: Use a jigging spoon tipped with bait in vegetation.

Lake Cornelia
Ice thickness is 18 to 20 inches. Yellow Bass – Good: Small yellow bass are biting on a variety of baits.

Lower Pine Lake
Ice thickness is 12 to 14 inches. Ice conditions have been deteriorating with the warm weather this week. Use caution and check ice thickness as you go. Bluegill – Slow.

Rice Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 20 inches. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Try a small minnow near vegetation.

Upper Pine Lake
Ice thickness is 12 to 14 inches. Ice conditions have been deteriorating with the warm weather this week. Use caution and check ice thickness as you go. Black Crappie – Slow.

Aeration systems are running at Clear Lake, Crystal Lake, Rice Lake and Silver Lake. Avoid any open water areas. For information on the lakes and rivers in north central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.

Center Lake
Ice thickness is around 13 inches. Caution: The lake aeration system is currently in operation, creating a large open hole.

East Okoboji Lake
Most of the lake is fully iced with an average of 18+ inches of ice allowing for safe ATV traffic in most areas. Be cautious of the open holes and seams that still persist. Panfishing has been good out from the Ritz; some sorting is needed. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics and baits. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Yellow Bass – Good: With a little movement on the basin, you should be able find a decent bite and also catch a few other species.

Ingham Lake
Ice conditions very heavily around the lake; most areas have 16+ inches. Caution: The lake aeration system is currently in operation.

Lost Island Lake
Ice conditions vary with an average of 17+ inches. Caution: The aeration system is currently in operation on the east side of the lake out from the nature center. This creates a large open hole in the ice. Yellow Perch – Fair: Lots of sorting may be needed.

Minnewashta Lake
Ice conditions are safe enough to venture with ATVs with an average ice thickness of 18+ inches. The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly good. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Pumpkinseed – Fair.

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked this winter; fish should be biting well. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Brook Trout – Good. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
The lake has a large open hole along the eastern side, with an average ice thickness of 16+ inches.  Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
Ice thickness is 18+ inches in most places. There is a large open hole on the southwest side due to strong winds and a few days of warmer temperatures. The Marble Beach access is in very poor condition due to ice heaving along the shoreline. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Ice thickness is 18+ inches in most places; there still are a handful of seams usually running from points. Know where trouble areas are before you venture on or off the ice. Panfishing has slowed a bit; with a little movement on the north end near Triboji, Emerson and Smiths Bay you may be able to catch a good amount of fish. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics or baits. Black Crappie – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Bluegill – Good: Many anglers have been successful off Triboji on the north end of the lake. Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

The walleye season for the Iowa Great Lake chain is closed. The season opens back up May 7th. Most area lakes have 16+ inches of ice. Ice conditions are relatively safe in most areas; access around many lakes has diminished Be sure you know a safe route on and off the ice. Bring safety essentials like flotation, ice picks and a friend. Area lakes have -2 inches of snow coverage. The forecast calls for highs above freezing most days. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of Feb. 24

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Ice thickness is 9 inches near the boat ramp. Bluegill – Fair: Use waxworms fished on a small jig in 10-15 feet of water near structure.

Bacon Creek Lake
About 1,500 rainbow trout were stocked this winter. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout.

Black Hawk Lake
The winter aeration system in Town Bay is currently operating. Ice thickness is around 13 inches near the Ice House Point boat ramp; this is where most of the ice angling has taken place. Use caution; avoid areas of thin ice and open water in the middle portion of the lake around Lakewood Point and the east basin.  Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Black Hawk Pits
Ice thickness is 9 inches near the boat ramp.

Brushy Creek Lake
Ice conditions are variable; the thickest ice is by the big island near the south boat ramp and in the area around the north boat ramp. These areas are where most of the ice fishing is taking place. Conditions are more variable in the middle portion of the lake; there is thinner ice and a seam running across the big part of the lake. Use caution and check the ice thickness often. Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Crawford Creek Impoundment
The west end of the lake is open water. Anglers have made their way out on the existing ice. Ice conditions are extremely variable; use caution and drill test holes often.

Moorland Pond
About 1,500 rainbow trout were stocked this winter. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Ice thickness is around 15 inches in most areas. Ice conditions remain variable; use caution and check ice thickness often. There is open water and recently frozen over areas that are thin near the big island, some areas along the south shore, and the little island. All walleye between 19 and 25-inches must be immediately released unharmed at Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day.  Walleye – Fair: Anglers are picking up some walleye; best bite is during low-light hours. White Bass – Fair.  Yellow Perch – Fair: Anglers are picking up fish; sorting is needed. Try minnows fished near the bottom.  Most action has been at the east end of the lake.

Lakes throughout the district have roughly 8-15 inches of ice in the thickest areas. Many lakes have pockets of open water and thin ice on areas that recently froze over. Use caution and check ice thickness often. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
Ice thickness is 14 to 16 inches. Rainbow Trout – Fair: Try a bright colored jigging spoon tipped with spikes. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Clear Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 20 inches. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a minnow or jigging spoon near the edge of rushes.  Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm or a plastic bait near the edge of rushes. Walleye – Fair: Use a jigging spoon tipped with a minnow or cut bait in 8 to 10 feet of water. Best bite is after sunset.  Yellow Bass – Slow: Try a small jig tipped with bait in 8 to 10 feet of water. You have to stay mobile to find fish. Yellow Perch – Good: Use a jigging spoon tipped with bait in vegetation.

Crystal Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 20 inches. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small minnow near the edge of the dredge cut. Bluegill – Slow.

Lake Cornelia
Ice thickness is 18 to 20 inches. Yellow Bass – Good: Small yellow bass are biting on a variety of baits.

Rice Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 20 inches. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Try a small minnow near vegetation.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Ice thickness is 0 to 20 inches. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms in 2 to 3 feet of water.

Aeration systems are running at Clear Lake, Crystal Lake, Rice Lake and Silver Lake. Avoid any open water areas. For information on the lakes and rivers in north central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.

Center Lake
Ice thickness is around 13 inches. Caution: The lake aeration system is currently in operation, creating a large open hole.

East Okoboji Lake
Most of the lake is fully iced with an average of 20+ inches of ice allowing for safe ATV traffic in most areas. Be cautious of the open holes and seams that still persist. Panfishing has been good out from the Ritz; some sorting is needed. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics and baits. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Yellow Bass – Good: With a little movement on the basin, you should be able find a decent bite and also catch a few other species.

Ingham Lake
Ice conditions very heavily around the lake; most areas have 18+ inches. Caution: The lake aeration system is currently in operation.

Lost Island Lake
Ice conditions vary with an average of 17+ inches. Caution: The aeration system is currently in operation on the east side of the lake out from the nature center. This creates a large open hole in the ice. Yellow Perch – Fair: Lots of sorting may be needed.

Minnewashta Lake
Ice conditions are safe enough to venture with ATVs with an average ice thickness of 18+ inches. The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly good. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Pumpkinseed – Fair.

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked this winter; fish should be biting well. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Brook Trout – Good. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
The lake is fully iced, with an average ice thickness of 18+ inches. Caution: The lake aeration system is currently in operation. Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
Ice thickness is 20+ inches in most places. There is a large open hole on the southwest side due to strong winds and a few days of warmer temperatures. The Marble Beach access is in very poor condition due to ice heaving along the shoreline. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Ice thickness is 20+ inches in most places; there still are a handful of seams usually running from points. Know where trouble areas are before you venture on or off the ice. Panfishing has slowed a bit; with a little movement on the north end near Triboji, Emerson and Smiths Bay you may be able to catch a good amount of fish. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics or baits. Black Crappie – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Bluegill – Good: Many anglers have been successful off Triboji on the north end of the lake. Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

Most area lakes have 20+ inches of ice. Watch out for open or iced over holes and seams running across the lakes. Be sure you know a safe route on and off the ice. Bring safety essentials like flotation, ice picks and a friend. Area lakes have -2 inches of snow coverage. The forecast calls for a mix of warmer and frigid temperatures. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of Feb. 17

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Ice thickness is 11 inches near the boat ramp. Bluegill – Fair: Keeper-sized bluegill have been picked up this week. Use waxworms fished on a small jig in 10-15 feet of water near structure.

Bacon Creek Lake
About 1,500 rainbow trout were stocked this winter. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout.

Black Hawk Lake
The winter aeration system in Town Bay is currently operating. Ice thickness is around 13 inches near the Ice House Point boat ramp; this is where most of the ice angling has taken place. Use caution – there are pressure seams and areas of open water around Lakewood Point and in the middle of the east basin. There are open water fishing opportunities near the fish house in Town Bay. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers have had the best luck around the Gunshot Hill area. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Brushy Creek Lake
Ice conditions are variable; the thickest ice is by the big island near the south boat ramp and in the area around the north boat ramp. These areas are where most of the ice fishing is taking place. Conditions are more variable in the middle portion of the lake; there is thinner ice and a seam running across the big part of the lake. Use caution and check the ice thickness often when venturing out. Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Moorland Pond
About 1,500 rainbow trout were stocked this winter. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Ice thickness is around 15-18 inches in most areas. Conditions remain variable; there is open water and recently frozen over areas that are thin near the big island, and thin areas near Stoney Point and the little island. Use caution when venturing out and check ice thickness often. All walleye between 19 and 25-inches must be immediately released unharmed at Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day.  Walleye – Fair: Anglers are picking up some walleye; best bite is during low-light hours. White Bass – Fair.  Yellow Perch – Fair: Anglers are picking up fish; sorting is needed.

Lakes throughout the district have roughly 10-18 inches of ice. Watch out for seams and waterfowl holes with open water on the bigger lakes. Recent warm temperatures have degraded the ice on some areas in the southern part of the district. Use caution and check ice thickness often. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.


Blue Pit
Ice thickness is 12 to 14 inches. Rainbow Trout – Fair: Try a bright colored jigging spoon tipped with bait in 2 to 4 feet of water. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Clear Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 20 inches. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Black Crappie – Slow: Try a minnow or jigging spoon near edge of the rushes.  Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm  or a plastic bait near the edge of the rushes or open areas in the vegetation in 2 to 3 feet of water. Walleye – Fair: Use a jigging spoon tipped with a minnow or cut bait in 8 to 10 feet of water. Best bite is after sunset.  Yellow Bass – Slow: Try a small jig tipped with bait in 8 to 10 feet of water. You have to stay mobile to find fish. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are biting in 2 to 4 feet of water. Try fishing near vegetation; use a larger bait to get the bigger fish.

Crystal Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 20 inches. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a minnow near the edge of the dredge cut. Bluegill – Slow.

Lake Smith
Ice thickness is 0 to 20 inches. Black Crappie – Slow.  Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms. Best bite is early morning and the last hour of light.

Rice Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 20 inches. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms near vegetation in 2 to 4 feet of water. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Try a small minnow near vegetation.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Ice thickness is 0 to 20 inches. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms in 2 to 3 feet of water.

Aeration systems are running at Clear Lake, Crystal Lake, Rice Lake and Silver Lake. Avoid any open water areas. For information on the lakes and rivers in north central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.


Center Lake
Ice thickness is around 13 inches. Caution: The lake aeration system is currently in operation, creating a large open hole.

East Okoboji Lake
Most of the lake is fully iced with an average of 18+ inches of ice allowing for safe ATV traffic in most areas. Be cautious of the open holes and seams that still persist. Panfishing has been good out from the Ritz; some sorting is needed. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics and baits. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

Ingham Lake
Ice conditions very heavily around the lake; most areas have 17+ inches. Caution: The lake aeration system is currently in operation.

Lost Island Lake
Ice conditions vary with an average of 17+ inches. Caution: The aeration system is currently in operation on the east side of the lake out from the nature center. This creates a large open hole in the ice. Yellow Perch – Fair: Lots of sorting may be needed.

Minnewashta Lake
Ice conditions are safe enough to venture with ATVs with an average ice thickness of 18+ inches. The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly good. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Pumpkinseed – Fair.

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked this winter; fish should be biting well. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Brook Trout – Good. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
The lake is fully iced, with an average ice thickness of 19+ inches. Caution: The lake aeration system is currently in operation. Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
The lake is fully iced; watch out for areas that had open goose holes until recently. Ice thickness is 18+ inches in most places. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Ice thickness is 18+ inches in most places; there still are a handful of seams usually running from points. Know where trouble areas are before you venture on or off the ice. Panfishing has slowed a bit; with a little movement on the north end and Little Emerson Bay you may be able to catch a good amount of fish. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics or baits. Black Crappie – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Bluegill – Good: Many anglers have been successful off Triboji on the north end of the lake. Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

Most area lakes have 18+ inches of ice.  Watch out for iced over holes and seams running across the lakes. Be sure you know a safe route on and off the ice. Bring safety essentials like flotation, ice picks and a friend. Area lakes have 1-3 inches of snow coverage. The forecast calls for a mix of warmer and freezing temperatures. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Ice thickness is 12 inches near the boat ramp. Bluegill – Fair: Keeper-sized bluegill have been picked up this week. Use waxworms fished on a small jig in 10-15 feet of water near structure.

Bacon Creek Lake
About 1,500 rainbow trout were stocked this winter. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout.

Black Hawk Lake
The winter aeration system in Town Bay is currently operating. Ice thickness is around 14 inches near the Ice House Point boat ramp; this is where most of the ice angling has taken place. Use caution – there are pressure seams and areas of open water around Lakewood Point and in the middle of the east basin. There are open water fishing opportunities near the fish house in Town Bay. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers have picked up some crappie around the Gunshot Hill area. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Brushy Creek Lake
Ice conditions are variable; the thickest ice is by the big island near the south boat ramp and in the area around the north boat ramp. These areas are where most of the ice fishing is taking place. Conditions are more variable in the middle portion of the lake; there is thinner ice and a seam running across the big part of the lake. Use caution and check the ice thickness often when venturing out. Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Crawford Creek Impoundment
Ice has degraded with the recent warm weather; conditions are more variable. Watch out for thinner ice areas and open water areas near the dam to watch.  If you do venture out, use caution and check ice thickness often.

Moorland Pond
About 1,500 rainbow trout were stocked this winter. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Ice thickness is around 12-14 inches in most areas. Conditions remain variable; there is open water near the big island, and thinner areas of ice near Stoney Point and the King’s Point area. Watch out for seams in the middle of the lake. Use caution when venturing out and check ice thickness often. All walleye between 19 and 25-inches must be immediately released unharmed at Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day.  Walleye – Fair: Anglers are picking up some walleye; best bite is during low-light hours. White Bass – Fair.  Yellow Perch – Fair: Anglers are picking up fish; sorting is needed.

Lakes throughout the district have roughly 9-15 inches of ice. Watch out for seams and waterfowl holes with open water on the bigger lakes. Recent warm temperatures have degraded the ice on some areas in the southern part of the district. Use caution and check ice thickness often. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.


Blue Pit
Ice thickness is 10 to 12 inches. Trout were stocked this winter. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5. Rainbow Trout – Good: Try a bright colored jigging spoon tipped with bait in 2 to 4 feet of water.

Clear Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 19 inches. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Black Crappie – Slow. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm  or a plastic bait near the edge of the rushes or open areas in the vegetation in 2 to 3 feet of water. Walleye – Fair: Use a jigging spoon tipped with a minnow or cut bait in 9 to 10 feet of water. Best bite is after sunset.  Yellow Bass – Slow: Try a small jig tipped with bait in 8 to 10 feet of water. You have to stay mobile to find fish. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are biting in the Farmers beach area in 2 to 4 feet of water. Try fishing near vegetation; use a larger bait to get the bigger fish.

Lake Smith
Ice thickness is 0 to 18 inches. Black Crappie – Slow.  Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms.

Rice Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 17.5 inches. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms near vegetation in 2 to 4 feet of water. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Try a small minnow near vegetation.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Ice thickness is 0 to 17 inches. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms in 2 to 3 feet of water.

Upper Pine Lake
Ice thickness is 12 to 14 inches. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small minnow or plastic bait in 12 to 15 feet of water. Best bite is early morning. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm.

Aeration systems are running at Clear Lake, Crystal Lake, Rice Lake and Silver Lake. Avoid any open water areas. For information on the lakes and rivers in north central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.


Center Lake
Ice thickness is around 13 inches. Caution: The lake aeration system is currently in operation, creating a large open hole.

East Okoboji Lake
Most of the lake is fully iced with an average of 16+ inches of ice allowing for safe ATV traffic in most areas. Be cautious of the open holes and seams that still persist. Panfishing has been good out from the Ritz; some sorting is needed. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics and baits. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

Ingham Lake
Ice conditions very heavily around the lake; most areas have 17+ inches. Caution: The lake aeration system is currently in operation.

Lost Island Lake
Ice conditions vary with an average of 17+ inches. Caution: The aeration system is currently in operation on the east side of the lake out from the nature center. This creates a large open hole in the ice. Yellow Perch – Fair: Lots of sorting may be needed.

Minnewashta Lake
Ice conditions are safe enough to venture with ATVs with an average ice thickness of 16+ inches. The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly good. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Pumpkinseed – Fair.

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked this winter; fish should be biting well. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Brook Trout – Good. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
The lake is fully iced, with an average ice thickness of 17+ inches. Caution: The lake aeration system is currently in operation. Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
The lake is fully iced; watch out for areas that had open goose holes until recently. Ice thickness is 16+ inches in most places. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Ice thickness is 16+ inches in most places; there still are a handful of seams usually running from points. Know where trouble areas are before you venture on or off the ice. Panfishing has slowed a bit; with a little movement on the north end and Little Emerson Bay you may be able to catch a good amount of fish. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics or baits. Black Crappie – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Bluegill – Good: Many anglers have been successful off Triboji on the north end of the lake. Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

Most area lakes have 16+ inches of ice.  Watch out for iced over holes and seams running across the lakes. Be sure you know a safe route on and off the ice. Bring safety essentials like flotation, ice picks and a friend. Area lakes have 1-3 inches of snow coverage. The forecast calls for a mix of warmer and freezing temperatures. All walleye between 19 and 25 inches must be immediately released unharmed at Big Spirit Lake, East and West Okoboji Lakes, Upper Gar Lake, Minnewashta Lake, Lower Gar Lake and Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of January 27

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Ice is 9 inches thick near the boat ramp.

Bacon Creek Lake
Ice thickness is around 9 inches. About 1,500 rainbow trout were stocked on Jan. 13th. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout.

Black Hawk Lake
The winter aeration system in Town Bay is currently operating. Ice thickness is around 10-12 inches near the Ice House Point boat ramp; this is where most of the ice angling has taken place. Use caution – there are pressure seams and areas of thinner ice in the middle portion of the lake. There are still open water fishing opportunities near the fish house in Town Bay. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers have picked up some crappie around the Gunshot Hill area. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Black Hawk Pits
Ice thickness is 10 inches near the boat ramp.

Brushy Creek Lake
Ice conditions are variable; the thickest ice is by the big island near the south boat ramp and in the area around the north boat ramp. These areas are where most of the ice fishing is taking place.  ATV travel is not recommended in the middle portion of the lake; there is thinner ice and a seam running across the big part of the lake. Use caution and check the ice thickness often when venturing out. Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Moorland Pond
About 1,500 rainbow trout were stocked on Jan. 27th. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Ice thickness is around 10-14 inches in most areas. Conditions remain variable; there is open water near the big island, and thinner areas of ice near Stoney Point and the King’s Point area. Watch out for seams in the middle of the lake. Use caution when venturing out and check ice thickness often. All walleye between 19 and 25-inches must be immediately released unharmed at Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day.  Walleye – Fair: Anglers are picking up some walleye; best bite is during low-light hours. White Bass – Fair.  Yellow Perch – Fair.

Lakes throughout the district have roughly 9-14 inches of ice. Watch out for seams and waterfowl holes with open water on the bigger lakes. Use caution and check ice thickness often. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
Ice thickness is 8 to 12 inches. Rainbow Trout – Good. Trout were stocked on Jan. 18. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Clear Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 17 inches. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Black Crappie – Slow. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm near the edge of the rushes or open areas in the vegetation in 2 to 3 feet of water. Walleye – Fair: Use a jigging minnow or try dead sticking a minnow. Best bite is near last light. Yellow Bass – Slow: Try a small jig tipped with bait in 4 to 6 feet of water. You have to stay mobile to find fish. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are biting in the Farmers beach area in 2 to 4 feet of water. Try fishing near vegetation; use a larger bait to get the bigger fish.

Rice Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 17 inches. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms near vegetation. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Ice thickness is 0 to 17 inches. Bluegill – Slow.

Upper Pine Lake
Ice thickness is 12 to 14 inches. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small minnow or plastic bait in 12 to 15 feet of water. Best bite is early morning. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm.

Aeration systems are running at Clear Lake, Crystal Lake, Rice Lake and Silver Lake. Avoid any open water areas and be cautious of waterfowl holes that may have recently frozen over. For information on the lakes and rivers in north-central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.

Center Lake
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation, creating a large open hole.

East Okoboji Lake
Most of the lake is fully iced with an average of 14+ inches of ice allowing for safe ATV traffic in most areas. Be cautious of the open holes and seams that still persist. Panfishing has been good out from the Ritz; some sorting is needed. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics and baits.  Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

Ingham Lake
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation. Ice conditions very heavily around the lake; most areas have 14+ inches.

Lost Island Lake
Caution
: The aeration system is currently in operation on the east side of the lake out from the nature center. This creates a large open hole in the ice. The lake has varying ice conditions with an average of 14+ inches.  Yellow Perch – Fair: Lots of sorting may be needed.

Minnewashta Lake
The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly good with the recent onset of ice. The bite is good enough that live bait hasn’t been needed for success. Ice conditions are safe enough to venture with ATVs with an average ice thickness of 14+ inches. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Pumpkinseed – Fair.

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked in mid-January; fish should be biting well. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation. The lake is fully iced, with an average ice thickness of 14+ inches. Be cautious of holes that have frozen over more recently on the main basin. Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
The lake is fully iced, but conditions can vary in areas that had open holes until recently. Ice thickness is 14+ inches in most places. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Ice thickness is 14+ inches in most places; there still are a handful of seams usually running from points. Know where trouble areas are before you venture on or off the ice. Panfishing has been good with a little movement on the north end and Little Emerson Bay. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics or baits. Black Crappie – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Bluegill – Good: Many anglers have been successful off Triboji on the north end of the lake. Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

All walleye between 19 and 25 inches must be immediately released unharmed at Big Spirit Lake, East and West Okoboji Lakes, Upper Gar Lake, Minnewashta Lake, Lower Gar Lake and Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day. Most area lakes have 14+ inches of ice. Expect lots of traffic on and off the lakes this weekend with the Okoboji Winter Games. Watch out for iced-over holes and seams running across the lakes. Be sure you know a safe route on and off the ice. Bring safety essentials like flotation, ice picks and a friend. Area lakes have 3-6 inches of snow coverage. The forecast calls for continued freezing temperatures. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of January 20

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Ice is 8 inches thick near the boat ramp.

Bacon Creek Lake
Ice thickness is around 8-9 inches. About 1,500 rainbow trout were stocked on Jan. 13th. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout.

Black Hawk Lake
The winter aeration system in Town Bay is currently operating. Ice thickness is around 10 inches near the Ice House Point boat ramp; this is where most of the ice angling has taken place. Use caution – there are pressure seams and areas of thinner ice in the middle portion of the lake. There are still open water fishing opportunities near the fish house in Town Bay. Black Crappie – Fair: Some anglers have picked up 10 to 11-inch crappie around the Gunshot Hill area. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Brushy Creek Lake
Ice conditions are variable; the thickest ice is by the big island near the south boat ramp and in the area around the north boat ramp. These areas are where most of the ice fishing is taking place.  ATV travel is not recommended in the middle portion of the lake; there is thinner ice and a seam running across the big part of the lake. Use caution and check the ice thickness often when venturing out. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Yellow Perch – Slow. 

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Ice thickness is around 10-12 inches in most areas. Conditions remain variable; there is open water near the big island, and thinner areas of ice near Stoney Point and the King’s Point area. Watch out for seams in the middle of the lake.  Use caution when venturing out and check ice thickness often. All walleye between 19 and 25-inches must be immediately released unharmed at Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day.  Walleye – Fair: Anglers are picking up some walleye; best bite is during low-light hours. White Bass – Fair.  Yellow Perch – Fair.

Lakes throughout the district have roughly 8-12 inches of ice. Watch out for seams and waterfowl holes with open water on the bigger lakes. Use caution and check ice thickness often. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
Ice thickness is 5 to 10 inches. Rainbow Trout – Slow. Trout were stocked Jan. 18. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Clear Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 14 inches. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Black Crappie – Slow. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm near the edge of the rushes or open areas in the vegetation in 2 to 3 feet of water. Walleye – Fair: Use a jigging minnow or try dead sticking a minnow. Best bite is near last light. Yellow Bass – Slow: Try a small jig tipped with bait in 5 to 6 feet of water. You have to stay mobile to find fish. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are biting in the Farmers beach area in 2 to 4 feet of water. Try fishing near vegetation; use a larger bait to get the bigger fish. 

Lake Cornelia
Ice thickness is 10 to 12 inches. Yellow Bass – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm. 

Rice Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 14 inches. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms near vegetation. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Ice thickness is 0 to 14 inches. Bluegill – Slow. 

Upper Pine Lake
Ice thickness is 8 to 10 inches. Bluegill – Good: Try a small minnow or plastic bait in 12 to 15 feet of water. Best bite is early morning. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm.

Aeration systems are running at Clear Lake, Crystal Lake, Rice Lake and Silver Lake. Avoid any open water areas and be cautious of waterfowl holes that may have recently frozen over. Check ice thickness often as you go. For information on the lakes and rivers in north-central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.

Center Lake
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation, creating a large open hole.

East Okoboji Lake
Most of the lake is fully iced with an average of 14+ inches of ice allowing for safe ATV traffic in most areas. Be cautious of the open holes and seams that still persist. Panfishing has been good out from the Ritz; some sorting is needed. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics, and baits.  Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

Ingham Lake
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation. Ice conditions very heavily around the lake; most areas have 12+ inches.

Lost Island Lake
Caution
: The aeration system is currently in operation on the east side of the lake out from the nature center. This creates a large open hole in the ice. The lake has varying ice conditions with an average of 12+ inches.  Yellow Perch – Fair: Lots of sorting may be needed.

Minnewashta Lake
The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly good with the recent onset of ice. The bite is good enough that live bait hasn’t been needed for success. Ice conditions are safe enough to venture with ATVs with an average ice thickness of 14+ inches. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Pumpkinseed – Fair. 

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked in mid-January; fish should be biting well. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation. The lake is fully iced, with an average ice thickness of 14+ inches. Be cautious of holes that have frozen over more recently on the main basin. Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
The lake is fully iced, but conditions can vary in areas that had open holes until recently. Ice thickness is 14+ inches in most places. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Ice thickness is 14+ inches in most places; there still are a handful of seams and recently frozen over holes. Know where trouble areas are before you venture on or off the ice. Panfishing has been good with a little movement on the north end and Little Emerson Bay. Try heavy tungsten jigs, plastics or baits. Black Crappie – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Bluegill – Good: Many anglers have been successful off Triboji on the north end of the lake. Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

All walleye between 19 and 25 inches must be immediately released unharmed at Big Spirit Lake, East and West Okoboji Lakes, Upper Gar Lake, Minnewashta Lake, Lower Gar Lake and Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day. Most area lakes have 12+ inches of ice allowing for safe ice fishing. Small vehicle traffic has been prevalent in areas with thicker ice. Use caution as a handful of snowmobiles and ATVs have gone through in lakes that still have open holes and seams. Be sure you know a safe route on and off the ice. Bring safety essentials like flotation, ice picks, and a friend. Area lakes have 3-6 inches of snow on the ice. The forecast calls for continued below freezing temperaturesFor current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of January 13

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Ice is 8 inches thick near the boat ramp.

Black Hawk Lake
Ice is up to 8 inches near the Ice House Point boat ramp; this is where most of the ice angling has taken place. Ice is variable, especially in the middle and east end. Use caution – there are multiple pressure seams and areas of open water in the middle portion of the lake. There are still open water fishing opportunities near the fish house in Town Bay. Black Crappie – Fair: Some anglers have picked up 10 to 11-inch crappie around the Gunshot Hill area..  Bluegill – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Brushy Creek Lake
Ice conditions are variable; use caution and check the ice thickness often if venturing out. Recent warm weather has reduced ice quality in some areas. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair. 

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Ice is around 10-12 inches in some areas.  Conditions remain variable; there are thinner areas and some patches of open water along the south shore and near the big island.  Watch out for seams in the middle of the lake. Use caution when venturing out and check ice thickness often. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Lakes throughout the district have roughly 7-12 inches of ice. The recent warm weather has reduced ice quality in some areas. Watch out for seams and waterfowl holes with open water on the bigger lakes. Use caution and check ice thickness often. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
Ice thickness is 5 to 10 inches. Rainbow Trout – Slow. Trout were stocked the first week of November. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Clear Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 14 inches. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Black Crappie – Slow. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm in near the edge of the rushes or open areas in the vegetation in 2 to 3 feet of water. Walleye – Slow: Use a jigging minnow or try dead sticking a minnow. Best bite is near last light. Yellow Bass – Slow: Try a small jig tipped with bait in 5 to 6 feet of water. You have to stay mobile to find fish. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are biting in the Farmers beach area in 2 to 4 feet of water. Try fishing near vegetation; use a larger bait to get the bigger fish. 

Crystal Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 12 inches. Be cautious of a few open water areas outside of the aeration boundary.

Lake Cornelia
Ice thickness is 10 to 12 inches. Yellow Bass – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm. 

Lower Pine Lake
Ice thickness is 8.5 to 11 inches. Geese are keeping a hole open between the beach and the island. No fishing activity to report. 

Rice Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 14 inches. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with waxworms near vegetation. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Ice thickness is 0 to 12 inches. Bluegill – Slow. 

Upper Pine Lake
Ice thickness is 8 to 10 inches. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a waxworm.

Aeration systems are running at Clear Lake, Crystal Lake, Rice Lake and Silver Lake. Avoid any open water areas and be cautious of waterfowl holes that may have recently frozen over on these lakes. Check ice thickness often as you go. For information on the lakes and rivers in north-central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.

Center Lake
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation, creating a large open hole.

East Okoboji Lake
The lake is fully iced with an average of 14+ inches of ice allowing for safe ATV traffic in most areas  Black Crappie – Good. Bluegill – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

Ingham Lake
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation. Ice conditions very heavily around the lake; most areas have 12+ inches.

Lost Island Lake
Caution: The aeration system is currently in operation on the east side of the lake out from the nature center. This creates a large open hole in the ice. The lake has varying ice conditions with an average of 12+ inches.  Yellow Perch – Fair: Lots of sorting may be needed.

Minnewashta Lake
The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly good with the recent onset of ice. The bite is good enough that live bait hasn’t been needed to be successful. Ice conditions are safe enough to venture with ATVs with an average ice thickness of 14+ inches. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Pumpkinseed – Fair. 

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked unannounced this fall. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation. The lake is fully iced up, with an average ice thickness of 14+ inches. Be cautious of holes that have frozen over more recently on the main basin. Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
The lake is fully iced, but conditions can vary in areas that had open holes until recently. Ice thickness is 14+ inches in most places. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
The lake is fully iced up, but has had many seams and frozen over holes that are thinner than the majority of the lake. Bays and areas that have been iced up the longest have around 14+ inches of ice. Practice best ice safety if you try to venture out. Black Crappie – Good: Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait. Bluegill – Good: Many anglers have been successful off Triboji on the north end of the lake. Try jigging with tube jigs or a tungsten jig and live bait.

All walleye between 19 and 25 inches must be immediately released unharmed at Big Spirit Lake, East and West Okoboji Lakes, Upper Gar Lake, Minnewashta Lake, Lower Gar Lake and Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day. The majority of area lakes have 12+ inches of ice allowing for safe ice fishing. Small vehicle traffic has been prevalent in areas with thicker ice. Watch out for holes and seams on bigger lake basins. Make sure you have flotation, ice picks and check ice thickness often. The forecast calls for high temperatures just below freezing though the weekend and a winter storm this Friday. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of January 6

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Ice is 7 inches thick near the boat ramp.

Black Hawk Lake
Ice is up to 8 inches near the Ice House Point boat ramp; this is where most of the ice angling has taken place so far. Ice is variable, especially in the middle and east end. There are multiple pressure seams in the middle portion of the lake. There are still open water fishing opportunities near the fish house in Town Bay. Black Crappie – Fair.  Bluegill – Fair: Anglers have picked up a few bluegills; the bite is hit-or-miss. Yellow Perch – Fair. 

Black Hawk Pits
Ice is 7 inches thick near the boat ramp.  Ice is variable; use caution and check thickness often.

Brushy Creek Lake
Anglers are out on foot only. Ice conditions are variable and unsafe in some areas; use caution and check the ice thickness often if venturing out. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair: Reports of keeper-sized bluegills being caught. Yellow Perch – Fair. 

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Conditions remain variable, with reports of up to 6-9 inches of ice in some areas and thinner ice or even open patches near the big island and Stoney Point. Use caution when venturing out and check ice thickness often. Bluegill – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Lakes throughout the district have 5-10 inches of ice. Watch out for seams and waterfowl holes with open water on the bigger lakes. Use caution and check ice thickness often. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
Ice thickness is 5 to 7 inches. Rainbow Trout – Fair. Trout were stocked the first week of November. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Bluebill Lake
Ice thickness is 8 to 10 inches. 

Clear Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 10 inches. Clear Lake has a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm in open areas in the vegetation in 2 to 3 feet of water. Walleye – Slow: Try dead sticking a minnow. Best bite is near last light. Yellow Bass – Slow: Try a small jig tipped with bait in 5 to 6 feet of water. You have to stay mobile to find fish. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are biting in the Farmers beach area in 2 to 4 feet of water. Try fishing near vegetation; use a larger bait to get the bigger fish. 

Crystal Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 10 inches. Be cautious of a few open water areas outside of the aeration boundary.

Fin and Feather Lake
Ice thickness is 6 to 8 inches.

Lake Cornelia
Ice thickness is 8 to 10 inches.

Lake Smith
Ice thickness is 0 to 9 inches. Use caution near the aeration hole. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm.

Lower Pine Lake
Ice thickness is 2 to 6 inches.  

Rice Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 10 inches. Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Ice thickness is 0 to 10 inches. Bluegill – Slow. 

Upper Pine Lake
Ice thickness is 6 inches.

Aeration systems are running at Clear Lake, Crystal Lake, Rice Lake and Silver Lake. Avoid any open water areas and be cautious of waterfowl holes on these lakes that may have recently frozen over. Check ice thickness often as you go. For information on the lakes and rivers in north-central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.

Center Lake
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation, creating a large open hole.

East Okoboji Lake
The lake is fully iced with an average of 10+ inches of ice allowing for safe ATV traffic in most areas  Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair.

Ingham Lake
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation. Ice conditions very heavily around the lake; most areas have 10+ inches.

Lost Island Lake
Caution: The aeration system is currently in operation on the east side of the lake out from the nature center. This creates a large open hole in the ice. The lake has varying ice conditions with an average of 10+ inches.  Yellow Perch – Fair: Lots of sorting may be needed.

Minnewashta Lake
The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly good with the recent onset of ice. The bite is good enough that live bait hasn’t been needed to be successful. Ice conditions are safe enough to venture with ATVs with an average ice thickness of 12+ inches. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Fair. 

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked unannounced this fall. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Caution
: The lake aeration system is currently in operation. The lake is fully iced up, with an average ice thickness of 11+ inches. Be weary of holes that have frozen over more recently on the main basin. Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
The lake is fully iced, but conditions can vary in areas that had open holes until recently. Ice thickness is 10+ inches in most places. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
The lake is fully iced up, but has had many seams and holes that have more recently frozen up. Bays and areas that have been iced up the longest have around 10+ inches of ice. Practice best ice safety if you try to venture out. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. 

All walleye between 19 and 25 inches must be immediately released unharmed at Big Spirit Lake, East and West Okoboji Lakes, Upper Gar Lake, Minnewashta Lake, Lower Gar Lake and Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day. The majority of area lakes have 10+ inches of ice allowing for safe ice fishing. ATV traffic has been prevalent in areas with thicker ice. Watch out for holes and seams on bigger lake basins. Make sure you have flotation, ice picks and check ice thickness often. The forecast through the weekend calls for continued colder temperatures which should help create even better ice conditions. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of December 30

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Ice is up to 4 inches near the Ice House Point boat ramp; anglers have just started to get out on the ice. Ice is variable, especially in the east end where some areas recently froze over. Check ice thickness often. There are still open water fishing opportunities near the fish house in Town Bay.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Anglers have started to get out on the ice in some areas using extreme caution and foot traffic only.  Ice is variable; some waterfowl holes are still open and some have recently frozen over with thin ice. Use caution and check ice thickness often if venturing out. Bluegill – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Inconsistent ice thickness from 0-5 inches on area lakes. Anglers are starting to get out on some lakes. Avoid open areas and waterfowl holes that may have just recently frozen over.  Use caution and check ice thickness often. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
Rainbow Trout
 – Fair. Trout were stocked the first week of November. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Clear Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 7 inches. Staring January 1st, Clear Lake will have a protected slot on walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. The three fish daily bag limit remains unchanged. Bluegill – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with a waxworm in open areas in the vegetation in 2 to 3 feet of water. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Bass – Slow: Try a small jig tipped with bait in 5 to 6 feet of water. You have to stay mobile to find fish. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are biting in the Farmers beach area in 2 to 4 feet of water. Try fishing near vegetation; use a larger bait to get the bigger fish. 

Lower Pine Lake
Lower Pine Lake is mostly ice-covered. Unsafe ice conditions; fishing is not recommended. 

Rice Lake
Ice thickness is 0 to 6 inches. Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Upper Pine Lake
Upper Pine Lake is mostly ice-covered. Unsafe ice conditions; fishing is not recommended. 

Aeration systems are running at Clear Lake, Crystal Lake, Rice Lake and Silver Lake. Avoid any open water areas and be cautious of waterfowl holes on these lakes that may have recently frozen over. Check ice thickness often as you go. 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 lake is fully iced with an average of 8 inches in most areas  Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair.

Lost Island Lake
The lake has varying ice conditions with an average of around 8 inches. Check ice conditions often.

Minnewashta Lake
The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly good recently with the recent onset of ice. The bite is good enough that live bait hasn’t been needed to be successful. Ice conditions are safe enough to venture out on foot with an average ice thickness of 8+ inches. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Fair. 

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked unannounced this fall. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
The lake is fully iced with an average thickness of 10 inches. Be weary of holes that have frozen over more recently on the main basin. Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
The lake is fully iced, but conditions can vary in areas that had open holes until recently. Ice thickness is 7-8 inches in most places. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
The lake is fully iced, but conditions can vary in areas that had open holes until recently. Ice thickness is 7-8 inches in most places. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. 

Staring January 1st, the protective walleye slot limit will change to 19 to 25 inches at Big Spirit Lake, East and West Okoboji Lakes, Upper Gar Lake, Minnewashta Lake, Lower Gar Lake and Storm Lake; no more than one walleye longer than 25-inches can be taken per day. The majority of area lakes are fully iced over and have safe enough ice for foot traffic. There are a lot of holes and seams that have more recently frozen over. Make sure you have flotation, ice picks and check ice thickness often. Colder temperatures forecast this weekend should help create even better ice conditions. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of December 22

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
As of Dec. 22, the lake is mostly ice-covered with a few open areas mid-lake. Unsafe ice conditions; ice is 0-3 inches. There are still open water fishing opportunities near the fish house in Town Bay.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
As of Dec. 22, most of the lake is ice-covered, but conditions are unsafe. Ice is thin and inconsistent; there are open water areas mid-lake. Ice fishing is not recommended.

Most area lakes are iced over, but still contain small areas of open water. Ice thickness is very inconsistent and ranges from 0-3 inches. Unsafe ice conditions. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
Rainbow Trout
 – Fair. Trout were stocked the first week of November. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Clear Lake
The lake is frozen over again. Ice thickness is 2 to 4 inches. Ice fishing is not recommended.

Lakes in northcentral Iowa have frozen over again. Unsafe ice conditions – the ice is too thin for fishing. If you venture out, use caution and check ice thickness as you go. 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 lake is fully iced, but ice conditions vary from 3 – 7 inches in areas that have been iced up the longest. The lake has had small holes open throughout the lake due to high winds. Foot traffic at most is advised. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair.

Lost Island Lake
The lake has varying ice conditions with an average of around 4 inches. Check ice conditions often.

Minnewashta Lake
The panfish and crappie bite is expected to be fairly decent. Ice conditions are safe enough to venture out on foot; practice best ice safety and check conditions often. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Fair. 

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked unannounced this fall. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
The lake is fully iced up, but conditions are not yet safe enough to venture out on. Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
The lake is fully iced, but ice conditions vary. The lake has had small holes open throughout the lake due to high winds. Foot traffic at most is advised. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
The lake is mostly iced up, but has had many seams and holes open up due to high winds. Areas that have been iced up the longest have 3 – 7 inches of ice. Practice best ice safety if you try to venture out. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. 

The majority of area lakes are fully iced over, but have many hazards with a lot of holes and seams due to high winds. If you plan to try to fish the ice, make sure you have flotation, ice picks and check ice thickness often. Temperatures in the upper 30’s and 40’s forecast through the weekend with much colder temperatures next week. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of December 9

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Most of the lake has been covered in skim ice this last week. If most of the lake is ice-covered this coming week, there are still open water fishing opportunities near the fish house in Town Bay and near the inlet bridge. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers have picked up some fish in the fish house in Town Bay. Yellow Perch – Fair: Pick up fish in the fish house and near the inlet bridge with a minnow fished under a bobber.

There has been little fishing activity this last week due to skim ice conditions on most of our area water bodies. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
Rainbow Trout
 – Good. Trout were stocked the first week of November. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Most lakes in northcentral Iowa recently skimmed over with ice. Unsafe ice conditions – the ice is too thin for fishing. 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 lake is fully iced over with a thickness of 3 inches or less; use best ice safety practices if you plan to go out. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
The panfish and crappie bite is expected to be fairly decent once ice conditions are safe enough to venture out. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Fair. 

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked unannounced this fall. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
The lake is fully iced up, but conditions are not yet safe enough to venture out on. Walleye – Fair.

Spirit Lake
The lake is fully iced up with 3 or less inches of ice. Practice best ice safety if you try to venture out. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
There is about 50 percent ice cover across the lake, with better ice within bays. Ice thickness is 3 inches or less; use best ice safety practices if you plan to go out. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. 

Most lakes are fully capped, but ice conditions are very poor. If you plan to try to fish the ice, make sure you have flotation, ice picks and check ice thickness often. The forecast calls for highs in the 20’s and 30’s with a snowstorm this weekend; a layer of snow will hinder ice production. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of December 2

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
The courtesy dock at the boat ramp has been removed for the season.

Black Hawk Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed for the season. The courtesy dock at the State Marina boat ramp will remain in place year-round. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers are picking up 10- to 12-inch crappie. Most fish are being picked up in and around the fish house in Town Bay. Try also along Ice House Point and near the inlet bridge. Fish are biting on jigs tipped with a minnow or without bait. Most are being fished under a bobber.  Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Pick up fish in the fish house and near the inlet bridge with a minnow fished under a bobber.

Brushy Creek Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed and the courtesy docks have been removed for the season. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig and minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Walleye – Slow: Find walleye in 10-20 feet of water. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with crawler or minnows fished in areas of 10-15 feet of water.

North Twin Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair: Anglers are picking up yellow bass fishing from shore.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
The courtesy dock at the Bel-Air boat ramp has been removed for the season. Courtesy docks at the ramp in the DNR marina will remain in place throughout the season. Water clarity is less than one foot. Walleye – Slow: Cast twisters or crankbaits from shore.  Also try live bait like minnows or leeches fished under a bobber along shore during evenings or mornings. White Bass – Fair: Cast twisters along shore or use crawlers fished under a bobber in areas along shore. 

For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
Rainbow Trout
 – Good. Trout are biting on a variety of baits. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the low 40’s. The lake is five inches low. All courtesy docks have been removed for the season. Walleye – Slow: Anglers are having success fishing jigs and a minnow after sunset from the jetties and along the north shore. 

Rice Lake
The refuge area west of the north boat ramp is closed to all boating activity. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig and minnow after sunset. Yellow Perch – Slow: Use a slip bobber and a minnow in the deep water out from the homes. 

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
Many anglers are observing higher catch rates with sorting needed to limit out on various fish. Many people have had success with slip bobbers/spoons as well as vertical jigging and dropshot. The current water temperature is hovering just above freezing. Black Crappie – Fair: Catch has been picking up; fish are moving in shallower and hanging out around pockets of vegetation. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill are biting like crazy. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Pumpkinseed – Fair: Fun and easier to catch from most docks. Use a small hook, bobber and piece of worm.

Lost Island Lake
The walleye bite from shore has been very good with many anglers fishing off the southern stony point and eastern shore. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair: Good catch rate with some sorting needed.

Minnewashta Lake
The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly decent and will continue to improve as the water cools and starts to ice up. Black Crappie – Good: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Good. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked unannounced this fall. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
Fish are moving in shallower. The current water temperature is hovering just above freezing. The perch and walleye bite has slowed with the latest cold front. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Walleye – Fair: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are moving in shallower allowing for great catch with some sorting. Try mini jigs and minnows; bring plenty of minnows as smaller fish will strip you of your bait.

West Okoboji Lake
The current water temperature is hovering just above freezing. Anglers have been successful fishing for bluegill and crappie in 10-15 feet of water. Most any bait has been working. Use lead core or tadpole baits. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Try a shucks jigger and bobber fished in 10-15 feet of water. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try trolling with twister tails and ripple shads or shucks jiggers with a bobber. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers are catching them while fishing for other species. 

The panfish/perch bite has slowed due to the most recent cold front. The evening walleye bite from shore has been slower. What little ice that was covering some lakes has diminished with last week’s warmer weather. The forecast calls for highs in the 40’s; colder nights should start to promote ice building again. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of November 23

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
The courtesy dock at the boat ramp has been removed for the season.

Black Hawk Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed for the season. The courtesy dock at the State Marina boat ramp will remain in place year-round. Water level is about 10 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers are picking up 10- to 12-inch crappie. Most fish are being picked up in and around the fish house in Town Bay. Try also along Ice House Point and near the inlet bridge. Fish are biting on jigs tipped with a minnow or without bait. Most are being fished under a bobber.  Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch fishing is fair to good. Pick up fish in the fish house and near the inlet bridge with a minnow fished under a bobber.

Brushy Creek Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed and the courtesy docks have been removed for the season. Water temperature is in the low-40s. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig and minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Walleye – Slow: Walleye have moved off shore to deeper water with cooling water temperatures. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with crawler or minnows fished in areas of 10-15 feet of water.

North Twin Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair: Anglers are picking up yellow bass fishing from shore.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
The courtesy dock at the Bel-Air boat ramp has been removed for the season. Courtesy docks at the ramp in the DNR marina will remain in place throughout the season. Water clarity is less than one foot. Walleye – Slow: Cast twisters or crankbaits from shore.  Also try live bait like minnows or leeches fished under a bobber along shore during evenings or mornings. White Bass – Fair: Cast twisters along shore or use crawlers fished under a bobber in areas along shore. 

Water temperatures have dropped to around 40 degrees. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
Rainbow Trout
 – Good. Trout are biting on a variety of baits. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the upper 30s. The lake is five inches low. All courtesy docks have been removed for the season. Walleye – Fair: Anglers are having success fishing jigs and a minnow after sunset from the jetties and along the north shoreline. Yellow Perch – Fair: Anglers are catching a few perch from the Ventura Grade jetties using slip bobbers with minnows or a jig and minnow with a slow retrieve.

Rice Lake
The refuge area west of the north boat ramp is closed to all boating activity. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig and minnow after sunset. Yellow Perch – Slow: Use a sllip bobber and a minnow in the deep water out from the homes. 

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
Many anglers are observing higher catch rates with sorting needed to limit out on various fish. Many people have had success with slip bobbers/spoons as well as vertical jigging and dropshot. The current water temperature is 35 degrees. Black Crappie – Fair: Catch has been picking up and fish have been moving in shallower and hanging out around pockets of vegetation. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill are biting like crazy recently. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Pumpkinseed – Fair: Fun and easier to catch from most docks. Use a small hook, bobber and piece of worm.

Lost Island Lake
The walleye bite from shore has been very good with many anglers fishing off the southern stony point and eastern shore. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair: Good catch rate with some sorting needed.

Minnewashta Lake
The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly decent and will continue to improve as the water cools and starts to ice up. Black Crappie – Good: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Good. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked unannounced this fall. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 35 degrees. Fish are moving in shallower. The perch and walleye bite has slowed with the latest cold front. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Walleye – Fair: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are moving in shallower allowing for great catch with some sorting. Try mini jigs and minnows; bring plenty of minnows as smaller fish will strip you of your bait.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 36 degrees. Anglers have been successful fishing for bluegill and crappie in 10-15 feet of water. Most any bait has been working. Use lead core or tadpole baits. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Try a shucks jigger and bobber fished in 10-15 feet of water. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try trolling with twister tails and ripple shads or shucks jiggers with a bobber. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers are catching them while fishing for other species. 

The panfish/perch bite has slowed a bit due to the most recent cold front. The evening walleye bite from shore has been slower. The forecast calls for highs in the 40s with much colder nights leading to some freezing. Most lake temperatures are now in the 30s. Many of the the smaller lakes have been icing over during the nights. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of November 18

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
The courtesy dock at the boat ramp has been removed for the season.

Black Hawk Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed for the season. The courtesy dock at the State Marina boat ramp will remain in place year-round. Water temperatures are around 40 degrees. Water level is about 10 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers are picking up 10- to 12-inch crappie. Most fish are being picked up in and around the fish house in Town Bay. Try also along Ice House Point and near the inlet bridge. Fish are biting on jigs tipped with a minnow or without bait. Most are being fished under a bobber.  Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch fishing is fair to good. Pick up fish in the fish house and near the inlet bridge with a minnow fished under a bobber.

Brushy Creek Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed and the courtesy docks have been removed for the season. Water temperature is in the mid-40’s. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig and minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Walleye – Slow: Walleye have moved offshore to deeper water with cooling water temperatures. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with crawler or minnows fished in areas of 10-15 feet of water.

North Twin Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair: Anglers are picking up yellow bass fishing from shore.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
The courtesy dock at the Bel-Air boat ramp has been removed for the season. Courtesy docks at the ramp in the DNR marina will remain in place throughout the season. Water temperatures are around 40 degrees. Water clarity is less than one foot. Walleye – Slow: Water temperatures have dropped to around 40 degrees. Cast twisters or crankbaits from shore.  Also, try live bait like minnows or leeches fished under a bobber along shore during evenings or mornings. White Bass – Fair: Cast twisters alongshore or use crawlers fished under a bobber in areas alongshore. 

Water temperatures have dropped to around 40 degrees. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the low 40’s. All courtesy docks have been removed for the season. Walleye – Fair: Anglers are catching a few walleye in the evenings at the Ventura Grade and along the north shoreline. Cast crankbaits or jigs retrieved slowly. Yellow Perch – Fair: Anglers are catching a few perch at the Ventura Grade on warmer afternoons.  A minnow below a bobber works best.

Rice Lake
The refuge area west of the north boat ramp is closed to all boating activity. Yellow Perch – Fair: Try minnows and jigs slowly for the best action. Sorting for better size is needed; perch up to 12-inches are being caught.

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 40 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. Many anglers are observing higher catch rates with sorting needed to limit out on various fish. Black Crappie – Good: Catch is picking up; crappie are moving in shallower and hanging out around pockets of vegetation. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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
The walleye bite from shore has been very good with many anglers fishing off the southern stony point and eastern shore. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair: Good catch rate with some sorting needed.

Minnewashta Lake
The panfish and crappie bite has been fairly decent and will continue to improve as the water cools and starts to ice up. Black Crappie – Good: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Good. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Scharnberg Pond
Trout were stocked unannounced this fall. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. Rainbow Trout – Good: Trout are biting on a variety of different baits. Try a worm or lure that imitates a minnow.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 37 degrees. Fish are moving in shallower. The walleye bite is very good in the evening; try fishing from shore or with waders. The perch bite continues to slowly pick up as water temperatures fall. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Walleye – Good: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are moving in shallower allowing for great catch with some sorting. Try mini jigs and minnows; bring plenty of minnows as smaller fish will strip you of your bait.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 41 degrees. Anglers have been successful fishing for bluegill and crappie in 10-15 feet of water. Most any bait has been working. Use lead core or tadpole baits. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Try a shucks jigger and bobber fished in 10-15 feet of water. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try trolling with twister tails and ripple shads or shucks jiggers with a bobber. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers are catching them while fishing for other species. 

The panfish/perch bite has been consistent. All boat ramp docks have been pulled for the season. The evening walleye bite from shore is good. The forecast calls for colder temperatures in the 30’s and 40’s. Most lake temperatures are in the 30’s. Many of the smaller lakes will to start to ice over during the nights. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of November 10

NORTHWEST

 

Arrowhead Lake
The courtesy dock at the boat ramp has been removed for the season.

Black Hawk Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed for the season. The courtesy dock at the State Marina boat ramp will remain in place year-round. Water temperatures are in the upper 40’s. Water level is about 9 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Good: Anglers have been doing well this last week – keepers are 10- to 12-inches long.  Most fish are being picked up in and around the fish house in Town Bay. Try also along Ice House Point and near the inlet bridge. Fish are biting on jigs tipped with a minnow or without bait. Most are being fished under a bobber.  Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch fishing is fair to good.  Pick up fish in the fish house and near the inlet bridge with a minnow fished under a bobber.

Brushy Creek Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed and the courtesy docks have been removed for the season. Water temperature is in the upper 40’s. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig and minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Bluegill – Fair: Vertical jig for in 5-15 feet of water near submerged trees and logs. Walleye – Slow: Walleye have moved off shore to deeper water with cooling water temperatures. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with crawler or minnows fished in areas of 10-15 feet of water.

North Twin Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Shore fishing for crappie has been productive. Sorting is needed. Yellow Bass – Fair: Anglers are picking up yellow bass fishing from shore.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
The courtesy dock at the Bel-Air boat ramp has been removed for the season. Courtesy docks at the ramp in the DNR marina will remain in place throughout the season. Water temperatures are in the upper 40’s. Water clarity is less than one foot. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks. Walleye – Slow: Water temperatures are in the upper 40’s. Cast twisters or crankbaits from shore.  Also try live bait like minnows or leeches fished under a bobber along shore during evenings or mornings. White Bass – Fair: Cast twisters along shore or use crawlers fished under a bobber in areas along shore. 

Water temperatures in most district lakes are in the upper 40’s. Most boat ramp courtesy docks have been removed for the season. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Blue Pit
Trout are biting on a variety of baits. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout. The daily bag limit is 5. Rainbow Trout – Good. 

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the mid 40’s. Courtesy docks have been removed for the season. Black Crappie – Slow. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Good: Use slip bobbers with minnows or a slow retrieve with a jig and minnow from the Ventura Grade jetties.

Rice Lake
Any water west of the North boat ramp is a waterfowl refuge and is closed to all activity from Sept. 1st through the final day of the duck season. Yellow Perch – Slow. 

Upper Pine Lake
Upper Pine Lake boat ramp is open. The courtesy dock has been removed for the season. Black Crappie – 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 49 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. Many anglers are observing higher catch rates with sorting needed to limit out on various fish. Black Crappie – Good: Catch is picking up; crappie are moving in shallower and hanging out around pockets of vegetation. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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
The walleye bite from shore has been very good with many anglers fishing off the southern stony point and eastern shore. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair: Good catch rate with some sorting needed.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Good: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Good. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 45 degrees. Fish are moving in shallower. Use lead core and tadpole baits. The walleye bite is very good in the evening; try fishing from shore or with waders. The perch bite continues to slowly pick up as water temperatures fall. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Walleye – Good: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are moving in shallower allowing for great catch with some sorting. Try mini jigs and minnows; bring plenty of minnows as smaller fish will strip you of your bait.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 49 degrees. Anglers have been successful fishing for bluegill and crappie in 10-15 feet of water. Most any bait has been working. Use lead core or tadpole baits. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Try a shucks jigger and bobber fished in 10-15 feet of water. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try trolling with twister tails and ripple shads or shucks jiggers with a bobber. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers are catching them while fishing for other species. 

The panfish/perch bite has been consistent. Most boat ramp docks have been pulled for the season. The evening walleye bite from shore is good. The forecast calls for temperatures in the 40’s to 50’s. Lake temperatures are dropping fast with most lake temperatures in the upper 40’s and 50’s.

For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of November 4

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
The courtesy dock at the boat ramp has been removed for the season.

Black Hawk Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed for the season. Courtesy docks at Ice House Point boat ramp and the ramp near Black Hawk State Park Campground are removed for the season. The courtesy dock at the State Marina will remain in place year-round. Water temperature has dropped to the mid-40’s. Water level is about 9 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Try along Ice House Point shore and in or on the fish house in Town Bay. Keeper-size fish are 8- to 10-inches. Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Slow. 

Brushy Creek Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed and the courtesy docks have been removed for the season. Water temperature is in the upper 40’s. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig and minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Bluegill – Fair: Vertical jig for in 5-15 feet of water near submerged trees and logs. Walleye – Slow: Walleye have moved off shore to deeper water with cooling water temperatures. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with crawler or minnows fished in areas of 10-15 feet of water.

North Twin Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Shore fishing for crappie has been productive. Sorting is needed. Yellow Bass – Fair: Anglers are picking up yellow bass fishing from shore.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
The courtesy dock at the Bel-Air boat ramp has been removed for the season. Courtesy docks at the ramp in the DNR marina will remain in place throughout the season. Water temperature is around 50 degrees. Most of the lake is free of vegetation. Water clarity is less than one foot. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks. Walleye – Fair: Water temperatures are cooling down. Cast twisters or crankbaits from shore.  Also try live bait like minnows or leeches fished under a bobber along shore during evenings or mornings. White Bass – Fair: Cast twisters along shore or use crawlers fished under a bobber in areas along shore. 

Water temperatures in most district lakes are in the mid-40’s. Most boat ramp courtesy docks have been removed for the season. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Drift or slow troll small jigs. Stay mobile and try various locations around the lake until you find active fish. Yellow Bass – Fair: Anglers are catching some nice-sized yellow bass while fishing for crappie.

Clear Lake
Courtesy docks have been removed for the season at McIntosh Woods State Park and Ventura Access. Walleye – Fair: A few fish are being caught in the evenings along the north shore and the Ventura Grade jetties. Use slip bobbers with minnows or a slow retrieve with a jig and minnow.

Water temperatures have cooled into the 40’s across northern Iowa lakes. 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 49 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. Many anglers are observing higher catch rates with sorting needed to limit out on various fish. Black Crappie – Good: Catch is picking up; crappie are moving in shallower and hanging out around pockets of vegetation. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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
The walleye bite from shore has been very good with many anglers fishing off the southern stony point and eastern shore. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair: Good catch rate with some sorting needed.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Good: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Good. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 45 degrees. Fish are moving in shallower. Use lead core and tadpole baits. The walleye bite is very good in the evening; try fishing from shore or with waders. The perch bite continues to slowly pick up as water temperatures fall. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Walleye – Good: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are moving in shallower allowing for great catch with some sorting. Try mini jigs and minnows; bring plenty of minnows as smaller fish will strip you of your bait.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 49 degrees. Anglers have been successful fishing for bluegill and crappie in 10-15 feet of water. Most any bait has been working. Use lead core or tadpole baits. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Try a shucks jigger and bobber fished in 10-15 feet of water. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try trolling with twister tails and ripple shads or shucks jiggers with a bobber. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers are catching them while fishing for other species. 

The panfish/perch bite has been consistent. Most boat ramp docks have been pulled for the season. The evening walleye bite from shore is good. The forecast calls for temperatures in the 40’s to 50’s. Lake temperatures are dropping fast with most lake temperatures in the upper 40’s and 50’s.

For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of October 28

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed for the season. Courtesy docks at Ice House Point boat ramp and the ramp near Black Hawk State Park Campground will be removed within the next week. The courtesy dock at the State Marina will remain in place year-round. Water temperature has dropped to the mid-50’s. Water level is about 12 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Try along Ice House Point shore and in or on the fish house in Town Bay. Keeper-size fish are 8- to 10-inches. Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Fair: Try along Ice House Point and near the outlet in the east end of the lake. Throw twisters or fish live bait like minnows or leeches under a bobber. 

Brushy Creek Lake
The fish cleaning station is closed and the courtesy docks have been removed for the season. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig and minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure.  Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with crawler or minnows fished in areas of 10-15 feet of water.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
The courtesy dock at the Bel-Air boat ramp has been removed for the season. Courtesy docks at the ramp in the DNR marina will remain in place throughout the season. Water temperature is in the mid-50’s. Most of the lake is free of vegetation. Water clarity is less than one foot. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks. Walleye – Fair: Water temperatures are cooling down. Cast twisters or crankbaits from shore.  Also try live bait like minnows or leeches fished under a bobber along shore during evenings or mornings. White Bass – Fair: Cast twisters along shore or use crawlers fished under a bobber in areas along shore. 

Water temperatures in most district lakes are in the mid-50’s. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the upper 40’s. The lake is 6.3 inches low. Water clarity is 27 inches. The fish cleaning station and bathrooms are closed for the season. Black Crappie – Slow. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a minnow on the rock reefs and around the island. Shore anglers are having success fishing minnows off the jetties after sunset. Yellow Bass – Slow: Try a small jig tipped with a minnow or piece of cut bait fished on the edge of the vegetation. Use your electronics to find and stay on fish.

Rice Lake
Any water west of the north boat ramp is a waterfowl refuge and is closed to all activity from Sept. 1st through the final day of the duck season.  Bluegill 
– Fair: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber in open areas of vegetation near shore. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow in the deeper water along the homes on the south shore.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Bluegill
 – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished along the edge of the vegetation. Best bite is mid-afternoon. Largemouth Bass – Slow. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Upper Pine Lake
The Upper Pine Lake boat ramp is closed until further notice. Black Crappie – 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 52 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. Many anglers are observing higher catch rates with sorting needed to limit out on various fish. Black Crappie – Good: Catch is picking up; crappie are moving in shallower and hanging out around pockets of vegetation. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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
Bite has started to pick up with many anglers fishing off the southern stony point and eastern shore. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Good: Good catch rate with some sorting needed.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 49 degrees. Fish are moving in shallower. Use lead core and tadpole baits. The walleye bite has been very good in the evening; try fishing from shore or with waders. The perch bite continues to slowly pick up as water temperatures fall. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Walleye – Good: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are moving in shallower allowing for great catch with some sorting. Try mini jigs and minnows; bring plenty of minnows as smaller fish will strip you of your bait.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 52 degrees. Anglers have been successful fishing for bluegill and crappie in 10-15 feet of water. Most any bait has been working. Use lead core or tadpole baits. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Try a shucks jigger and bobber fished in 10-15 feet of water. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try trolling with twister tails and ripple shads or shucks jiggers with a bobber. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species. 

The panfish/perch bite has been consistent lately. Most boat ramp docks are still in. The evening walleye bite from shore has been good. The forecast calls for continued cooler temperatures in the 40’s to 50’s. Lake temperatures are dropping fast with most lake temperatures in the upper 40’s and 50’s.

For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of October 21

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature has dropped to the mid-50’s. Water level is about 12 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Try along Ice House Point shore and in or on the fish house in Town Bay. Keeper-size fish are 8- to 10-inches. Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore or near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point. Walleye – Fair: Try along Ice House Point and near the outlet in the east end of the lake. Throw twisters or fish live bait like minnows or leeches under a bobber. Walleye fishing usually picks up around late October into November on Black Hawk Lake.

Brushy Creek Lake
Water is cooling down; water level remains just below the spillway. Water clarity is around 2-3 feet. Black Crappie – Fair: The fall crappie bite has been fair to good. Try vertical jigging near submerged trees with small minnows. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers are still picking up bass while fishing the shoreline with traditional bass lures. Walleye – Fair: Try vertical jigging with a minnow near woody structure. Yellow Perch – Fair: Anglers are picking up good numbers of perch with a jig tipped with crawler or minnow. Try near woody structure in 10-15 feet of water.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water temperature is in the mid to upper 50’s. Most of the lake is free of vegetation. Water clarity is less than one foot. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks. Walleye – Fair: Water temperatures are cooling down. Cast twisters or crankbaits from shore.  Also try live bait like minnows or leeches fished under a bobber along shore during evenings or mornings. White Bass – Fair: Cast twisters along shore or use crawlers fished under a bobber in areas along shore. 

Water temperatures in most district lakes are in the mid to upper 50’s. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the upper 50’s. The lake is 6 inches low. Water clarity is 23 inches. Black Crappie – Slow. Walleye – Fair: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also. try slip bobber fishing a minnow on the rock reefs and around the island. Shore anglers are having success fishing minnows off the lighted dock after sunset. White Bass – Slow. Yellow Bass – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a minnow or piece of cut bait fished on the edge of the vegetation. Use your electronics to find and stay on fish.  

Rice Lake
Any water west of the north boat ramp is a waterfowl refuge and is closed to all activity from Sept. 1st through the final day of the duck season.  Bluegill 
– Fair: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber in open areas of vegetation near shore. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow in the deeper water along the homes on the south shore.

Silver Lake (Worth)
The vegetation has opened up some. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished along the edge of the vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Slow. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Upper Pine Lake
The Upper Pine Lake boat ramp is closed until further notice. Black Crappie – 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 57 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. Many anglers have observed high catch rates with sorting needed to limit out on various fish. Black Crappie – Good: Catch is picking up; crappie are moving in shallower and hanging out around pockets of vegetation. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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
Bite has started to pick up with many anglers fishing off the southern stony point and eastern shore. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Good: Good catch rate with some sorting needed.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 53 degrees. Fish are moving in shallower. Use lead core and tadpole baits. The walleye bite has been very good in the evening. The perch bite continues to slowly pick up as water temperatures fall. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Walleye – Good: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Good: Perch are moving in shallower allowing for great catch with some sorting. Try mini jigs and minnows; bring plenty of minnows as smaller fish will strip you of your bait.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 57 degrees. Anglers have been successful fishing for bluegill and crappie in 10-15 feet of water. Most any bait has been working. Use lead core or tadpole baits. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Try a shucks jigger and bobber fished in 10-15 feet of water. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try trolling with twister tails and ripple shads or shucks jiggers with a bobber. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species. 

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent. Most boat ramp docks are still in. Area lake levels are low, making launching and loading boats more difficult. The evening walleye bite is picking up across the area. The forecast calls for cooler temperatures in the 40’s to 50’s. Lake temperatures are dropping fast with most lake temperatures in the 50’s.

For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of October 14

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature has dropped to 60 degrees. Water level is about 11 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Try along Ice House Point shore and in or on the fish house in Town Bay. Keeper-size fish are 8- to 10-inches. Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore or near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use traditional bass lures fished along shore in areas with rocks, fallen trees or docks. Ice House Point shoreline near the outlet and near the inlet bridge are good areas to target bass. Walleye – Slow: Try along Ice House Point and near the outlet in the east end of the lake. Throw twisters or fish live bait like minnows or leeches under a bobber. Walleye fishing usually picks up around late October into November on Black Hawk Lake.

Brushy Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try along shore and near woody structure. Yellow Perch– Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a crawler or minnow in 10-15 feet of water

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water temperature is around 60 degrees. Most of the lake is free of vegetation. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks. Walleye – Slow: Water temperatures are cooling down; shore fishing for walleyes should improve as they begin to increase feeding behavior. Cast twisters or crankbaits from shore.  Also try live bait like minnows or leeches fished under a bobber along shore during evenings or mornings. White Bass – Fair: Cast twisters along shore or use crawlers fished under a bobber in areas along shore. 

Water temperatures in most lakes are around 60 degrees. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Largemouth Bass – Fair. Yellow Bass – Good: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Shore anglers are having success jigging a piece of crawler on the bottom.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the low 60’s. The lake is 5 inches low. Water clarity is 23 inches. Black Crappie – Slow. Walleye – Fair: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a minnow on the rock reefs and around the island. Shore anglers are having success fishing minnows off the lighted dock after sunset. White Bass – Slow. Yellow Bass – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a minnow or piece of cut bait fished on the edge of the vegetation. Use your electronics to find and stay on fish.  

Rice Lake
Any water west of the north boat ramp is a waterfowl refuge and is closed to all activity from Sept. 1st through the final day of the duck season.  Bluegill 
– Fair: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber in open areas of vegetation near shore. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow in the deeper water along the homes on the south shore.

Silver Lake (Worth)
The vegetation has opened up some. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished along the edge of the vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Slow. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Upper Pine Lake
The Upper Pine Lake boat ramp is closed until further notice. Black Crappie – 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 60 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. Many anglers have observed high catch rates with sorting needed to limit out on various fish. Black Crappie – Good: Catch is picking up; crappie are moving in shallower and hanging out around pockets of vegetation. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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
Bite has started to pick up with many anglers fishing off the southern stony point and eastern shore. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Good: Good catch rate with some sorting needed.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 60 degrees. Fish are moving in shallower. Use lead core and tadpole baits. The perch bite continues to slowly pick up as water temperatures fall. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Walleye – Good: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Good: Perch are moving in shallower allowing for great catch with some sorting. Try mini-jigs and minnows; bring plenty of minnows as smaller fish will strip you of your bait.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 60 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Try a shucks jigger and bobber fished in 10-15 feet of water. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try trolling with twister tails and ripple shads or shucks jiggers with a bobber. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species. 

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent. Most boat ramp docks are still in. Area lake levels are low, making launching and loading boats more difficult. The forecast calls for highs in the upper 50’s to 70’s and even cooler nights which have lowered lake temperatures to the lower 60’s and upper 50’s.

For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of September 30

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-60’s. Lake level is about 10 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers are picking up some 8- to 10-inch fish in and around the fish house shelter on Ice House Point. Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore or near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use traditional bass lures fished along shore in areas with rocks, fallen trees or docks. Ice House Point shoreline near the outlet and near the inlet bridge are good areas to target bass. Walleye – Slow: Shore fishing action should pick up as water temperatures drop. Try along Ice House Point and near the outlet in the east end of the lake. Throw twisters or fish live bait like minnows or leeches under a bobber.

Brushy Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures along areas with woody structure. Yellow Perch– Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a crawler or minnow in 10-15 feet of water

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water temperature is in the mid-60’s. Water clarity is roughly 12 inches. Most areas along shore are free of vegetation. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks. Walleye – Slow: A few walleye are being picked up mid-lake along dredge cuts. Shore fishing for walleye should improve as water temperatures continue to cool down and they begin to increase feeding behavior. Cast twisters or crankbaits from shore.  Also try live bait like minnows or leeches fished under a bobber along shore during evenings or mornings. White Bass – Fair: Cast twisters along shore or use crawlers fished under a bobber in areas along shore. 

Water temperatures in most lakes are in the mid-60’s. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Largemouth Bass – Fair. Yellow Bass – Good: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Shore anglers are having success jigging a piece of crawler on the bottom.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-60’s. The lake is 4.9 inches low. Water clarity is 25 inches. Black Crappie – Fair. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a minnow on the rock reefs. Yellow Bass – Good: Try a small jig tipped with a minnow or cut bait fished in 5 to 6 feet of water along the high bank on the north shore or out from the pump house. Use your electronics to find and stay on fish.  

Lake Smith
Bluegill
 – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber along the dam and in open pockets in the vegetation.

Rice Lake
Any water west of the north boat ramp is a waterfowl refuge and is closed to all activity from Sept. 1st through the final day of the duck season.  Bluegill 
– Fair: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber in open areas of vegetation near shore. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow in the deeper water along the homes on the south shore.

Silver Lake (Worth)
The vegetation has opened up some. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished along the edge of the vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Yellow Perch – Slow.

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 66 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. A great bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Many anglers have observed high catch rates with a lot of sorting. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are hard to target specifically, but can be caught mixed with other panfish. The bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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 report they have started to catch yellow bass in shallow amongst the vegetation. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 64 degrees. The water has cleared recently; using lighter line works best. Fish are moving in shallower. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Bluegill – Fair: Mostly being caught along with perch; use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies. Walleye – Good: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Good: Perch are moving in shallower allowing for great catch with some sorting. Try mini jigs and minnows; bring plenty of minnows as smaller fish will strip you of your bait.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 66 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Try a shucks jigger and bobber fished in 10-15 feet of water. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try trolling with twister tails and ripple shads or shucks jiggers with a bobber. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species. 

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent. Area lake levels are low, making launching and loading boats more difficult. The forecast calls for highs in the 60’s and 70’s, but lows in the 50’s at night. Lake temperatures have been slowly cooling down and are in the 60’s degrees. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of September 23

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-60’s. Lake level is about 10 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers are picking up some 8- to 10-inch fish in and around the fish house shelter on Ice House Point. Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore or near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use traditional bass lures fished along shore in areas with rocks, fallen trees or docks. Ice House Point shoreline near the outlet and near the inlet bridge are good areas to target bass. Walleye – Slow: Shore fishing action should pick up as water temperatures. Try along Ice House Point and near the outlet in the east end of the lake. Throw twisters or fish live bait like minnows or leeches under a bobber.

Brushy Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures along areas with woody structure. Yellow Perch– Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a crawler or minnow in 10-15 feet of water

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water clarity is roughly 1-2 feet. Most areas along shore are free of vegetation. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast lures along shore and docks.  Many areas near shore have only sparse vegetation patches with plenty of casting opportunities. Use weedless lures if fishing in areas with heavier vegetation. Walleye – Slow: A few walleye are being picked up mid-lake along dredge cuts. Shore fishing for walleye should improve as water temperatures continue to cool down and they begin to increase feeding behavior. Cast twisters or crankbaits from shore.  Also try live bait such as minnows or leeches fished under a bobber along shore during evenings or mornings.

Water temperatures in most lakes are in the mid-60’s. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Largemouth Bass – Fair. Yellow Bass – Good: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Shore anglers are having success jigging a piece of crawler on the bottom.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-60’s. The lake is 4 inches low. Water clarity is 23 inches. Black Crappie – Fair. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a minnow on the rock reefs. Yellow Bass – Good: Try a small jig tipped with a minnow or cut bait fished in 5 to 6 feet of water along the high bank on the north shore or out from the pump house. Use your electronics to find and stay on fish.  

Lake Smith
Bluegill
 – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber along the dam and in open pockets in the vegetation.

Rice Lake
Any water west of the north boat ramp is a waterfowl refuge and is closed to all activity from Sept. 1st through the final day of the duck season.  Bluegill 
– Fair. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow in the deeper water along the homes on the south shore.

Silver Lake (Worth)
The vegetation has open up some. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished along the edge of the vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Upper Pine Lake
The boat ramp at Upper Pine Lake will be open this weekend. Black Crappie – 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 66 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. A great bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Many anglers have observed high catch rates with a lot of sorting. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are hard to target specifically, but can be caught mixed with other panfish. The bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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 report they have started to catch yellow bass in shallow amongst the vegetation. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 64 degrees. The water has been clearing up; using lighter line works best. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Black Crappie – Fair: Try tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies in deeper water. Bluegill – Fair: Use tube jigs with wigglers or pilkies in deeper water. Walleye – Good: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Best bite is morning till 11:00 and mid-afternoon. Depths vary depending on the time of day. Move often to find fish – schools are smaller and sporadic.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 66 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Try fishing in 15-20 and up to 40 feet of water. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try trolling with twister tails and ripple shads. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species. 

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent. Area lake levels are low, making launching and loading boats more difficult. The forecast calls for highs in the 70’s and 80’s, but lows in the 50’s at night. Lake temperatures have been slowly cooling down and are in the 60’s degrees at night. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of September 16

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is in the low 70’s. Lake level is about 9 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers are picking up some 8- to 10-inch fish in and around the fish house shelter on Ice House Point. Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore or near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use traditional bass lures fished along shore in areas with rocks, fallen trees or docks. Ice House Point shoreline near the outlet and near the inlet bridge are good areas to target bass. Walleye – Slow: Try along the dredge shelf in front of Denison Beach or the rock pile off of Cottonwood Point.

Brushy Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures along areas with woody structure. Yellow Perch– Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a crawler or minnow in 10-15 feet of water

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water clarity is roughly 1-2 feet. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks or near the dredge cuts if fishing by boat. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast lures along shore and docks.  Many areas near shore have only sparse vegetation patches with plenty of casting opportunities. Use weedless lures if fishing in areas with heavier vegetation. Walleye – Fair: Pick up fish along the dredge cuts with crankbaits or bottom bouncers.  Use planer boards to pull crawler harnesses just above the weedlines.  Try jigging or slip bobber fishing in the deep areas of the dredge cuts where many areas are free of vegetation. Shore fishing for walleyes should improve as water temperatures cool.

Water temperatures in most lakes are in the lower 70’s. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Largemouth Bass – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the low 70’s. The lake is 3.36 inches low. Water clarity is 23 inches. Black Crappie – Fair. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or chicken liver on the windswept shore after sunset. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also, try slip bobber fishing a minnow on the rock reefs. Yellow Bass – Good: Use a small jig tipped with a minnow or cut bait fished in 5 to 6 feet of water along the high bank on the north shore or out from the pump house. Use your electronics to find and stay on fish.  

Rice Lake
Any water west of the north boat ramp is a waterfowl refuge and is closed to all activity from Sept. 1st through the final day of the duck season.  Bluegill 
– Fair. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow in the deeper water along the homes on the south shore.

Silver Lake (Worth)
The vegetation has open up some. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished along the edge of the vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Upper Pine Lake
The boat ramp at Upper Pine Lake is closed until the new ramp is installed.

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 69 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. A great bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Many anglers have observed high catch rates with a lot of sorting. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are hard to target specifically, but can be caught mixed with other panfish. The bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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 report they have started to catch yellow bass in shallow amongst the vegetation. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 69 degrees. The yellow perch bite has been slower, but the walleye bite has picked up. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Walleye – Good: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Best bite is morning till 11:00 and mid-afternoon. Depths vary depending on the time of day. Move often to find fish – schools are smaller and sporadic.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 68 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers work well. Try leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species. 

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent. Area lake levels are low, making launching and loading boats more difficult. The forecast calls for highs in the 70’s and 80’s, but lows in the 50’s at night. Lake temperatures have been slowly cooling down and are below 70 degrees at night. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of September 9

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 within each district, 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. 

For current information, contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at the end of each district report.

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is 71 degrees. Lake level is about 7 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: Anglers are picking up some 8- to 10-inch fish along Ice House Point and near the fish house in Town Bay. Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore or near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use traditional bass lures fished along shore in areas with rocks, fallen trees or docks. Ice House Point shoreline near the outlet and near the inlet bridge are good areas to target bass. Walleye – Slow: Try along the dredge shelf in front of Denison Beach or the rock pile off of Cottonwood Point.

Brushy Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures along areas with woody structure. Yellow Perch– Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a crawler or minnow in 10-15 feet of water

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water clarity is roughly 1-2 feet. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks or near the dredge cuts if fishing by boat. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast lures along shore and docks.  Many areas near shore have only sparse vegetation patches with plenty of casting opportunities. Use weedless lures if fishing in areas with heavier vegetation. Walleye – Fair: The walleye bite is hit-or-miss.  Anglers need to adjust some methods to fish in areas that have vegetation.  Pick up fish along the dredge cuts with crankbaits or bottom bouncers.  Use planer boards to pull crawler harnesses just above the weedlines.  Try jigging or slip bobber fishing in the deep areas of the dredge cuts where many areas are free of vegetation.

Water temperatures in most lakes have cooled to the lower 70’s. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Best bite is early morning. Largemouth Bass – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the lower 70’s. The lake is 2.16 inches low. Water clarity is 25 inches. Black Crappie – Fair. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or chicken liver on the wind swept shore after sunset. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a minnow on the rock reefs. Yellow Bass – Good: Use a small jig tipped with a minnow or cut bait fished in 5 to 6 feet of water along the high bank on the north shore or out from the pump house. Use your electronics to find and stay on fish.  

Rice Lake
Any water west of the north boat ramp is a waterfowl refuge and is closed to all activity from Sept. 1st through the final day of the duck season.  Largemouth Bass
 – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow in the deeper water along the homes on the south shore.

Silver Lake (Worth)
The vegetation has open up some. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished along the edge of the vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Yellow Perch – Slow.

Upper Pine Lake
The boat ramp at Upper Pine Lake is closed until the new ramp is installed.

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 72 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. A great bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Many anglers have observed high catch rates with a lot of sorting. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are hard to target specifically, but can be caught mixed with other panfish. The bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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 report they have started to catch yellow bass in shallow amongst the vegetation. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 72 degrees. The yellow perch bite has been slower, but the walleye bite has picked up. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Walleye – Good: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Best bite is morning till 11:00 and mid-afternoon. Depths vary depending on the time of day. Move often to find fish – schools are smaller and sporadic.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 72 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers are working well. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species. 

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent. Area lake levels are low, making launching and loading boats more difficult. Many boaters are already taking their boats out for the season, making the lakes less congested and allowing for better fishing opportunities. The forecast calls for highs in the 70’s and 80’s, but lows in the 50’s at night. Lake temperatures have been slowly cooling down and are in the low 70’s. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of September 2

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 within each district, 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. 

For current information, contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at the end of each district report.

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Lake level is about 6 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is about one foot. Black Crappie – Fair: The crappie bite has picked up with 8- to 10-inch fish being picked up along Ice House Point and near the fish house in Town Bay.  Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore or near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use traditional bass lures fished along shore in areas with rocks, fallen trees or  docks. Ice House Point shoreline near the outlet and near the inlet bridge are good areas to target bass. Walleye – Slow: Try along the dredge shelf in front of Denison Beach or the rock pile off of Cottonwood Point.

Brushy Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in 15 feet of water near woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures along areas with woody structure. Yellow Perch– Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a crawler or minnow in 10-15 feet of water

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water clarity is roughly 1-2 feet. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks or near the dredge cuts if fishing by boat. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast lures along shore and docks.  Many areas near shore have only sparse vegetation patches with plenty of casting opportunities. Use weedless lures if fishing in areas with heavier vegetation. Walleye – Fair: The walleye bite is hit-or-miss.  Anglers need to adjust some methods to fish in areas that have vegetation.  Pick up fish along the dredge cuts with crankbaits or bottom bouncers.  Use planer boards to pull crawler harnesses just above the weedlines.  Try jigging or slip bobber fishing in the deep areas of the dredge cuts where many areas are free of vegetation.

Water temperatures in most lakes have cooled to the lower 70’s. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Best bite is early morning. Yellow Bass – Fair. 

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-70’s. The lake is 2 inches low. Water clarity is 25 inches. Black Crappie – Fair. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or chicken liver on the wind swept shore after sunset. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a minnow on the rock reefs. Yellow Bass – Good: Use a small jig tipped with a minnow or cut bait fished in 5 to 6 feet of water along the north shore. Use your electronics to find and stay on fish.  

Rice Lake
Largemouth Bass
 – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow in the deeper water along the homes on the south shore.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Bluegill
 – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished along the edge of the vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits. Yellow Perch – Slow.

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 72 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. A great bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Many anglers have observed high catch rates with a lot of sorting. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are hard to target specifically, but can be caught mixed with other panfish. The bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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 report they have started to catch yellow bass in shallow amongst the vegetation. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Bass – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 67 degrees. The yellow perch bite has been slower, but the walleye bite has picked up. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Walleye – Good: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Best bite is morning till 11:00 and mid-afternoon. Depths vary depending on the time of day. Move often to find fish – schools are smaller and sporadic.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 72 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Use lead core and tadpole baits. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10-inches seen. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers are working well. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species. 

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent. Area lake levels are low, making launching and loading boats more difficult. The forecast calls for temperatures in the 70’s. Lake temperatures have been slowly cooling down and are in 60’s and low 70’s. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of August 26

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 within each district, 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. 

For current information, contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at the end of each district report.

NORTHWEST

Black Hawk Lake
Lake level is about 7 inches below the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is roughly 1.5 feet. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore or near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use traditional bass lures fished along shore in areas with rocks or vegetation or along docks. Walleye – Slow: Try along the dredge shelf in front of Denison Beach or the rock pile off of Cottonwood Point.

Brushy Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in about 15 feet of water near woody structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures anywhere with woody structure. Yellow Perch– Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a crawler or minnow in 10-15 feet of water

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom in areas along shore with rocks or near the dredge cuts if fishing by boat. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast lures along shore and docks.  Many areas near shore have only sparse vegetation patches with plenty of casting opportunities. Use weedless lures if fishing in areas with heavier vegetation. Walleye – Fair: The walleye bite is hit-or-miss.  Anglers need to adjust some methods to fish in areas that have vegetation.  Pick up fish along the dredge cuts with crankbaits or bottom bouncers.  Use planer boards to pull crawler harnesses just above the weedlines.  Try jigging or slip bobber fishing in the deep areas of the dredge cuts where many areas are free of vegetation.

For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Drift fish or troll a small minnow or tube jig. Best bite is early morning. Yellow Bass – Fair. 

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the low 70’s. The lake is 5.5 inches low. Water clarity is 25 inches. Black Crappie – Fair. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or chicken liver on the wind swept shore after sunset. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a minnow on the rock reefs. Yellow Bass – Good: Use a small jig tipped with a minnow or cut bait fished in 5 to 6 feet of water along the north shore. Use your electronics to find and stay on fish.  

Crystal Lake
Black Crappie
 – Slow: Drift fish tube jigs or a minnow in the dredge cut.

Lake Cornelia
Channel Catfish
 – Good: Try crawlers and chicken liver. Best bite is after sunset. Yellow Bass – Good. 

Rice Lake
Walleye
 – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a jig and minnow in the deeper water along the homes on the south shore.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Bluegill
 – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished in open areas near shore. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use topwater lures.

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 77 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. A great bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Many anglers have observed high catch rates with a lot of sorting. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are hard to target specifically, but can be caught mixed with other panfish. The bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy. 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
Black Crappie
 – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 77 degrees. The yellow perch bite has improved with the walleye bite starting to slow down. Walleye – Fair: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Best bite is morning till 11:00 and mid-afternoon. Depths vary depending on the time of day. Move often to find fish – schools are smaller and sporadic.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 76 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Black Crappie – Good: Crappie have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting like crazy with fish up to 10 inches seen. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers are working well. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species. 

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent. Area lake levels are lower, making launching and loading boats more difficult. Be careful when backing trailers down ramps as many boaters have been backing off the end of ramps with longer trailers. If at all possible, attempt to load your boat without power loading it onto the trailer. The forecast calls for temperatures in the 70’s and 80’s with chances of rain. Lake temperatures are in the 70’s. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of August 12

NORTHWEST

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Slow: Drift fish a small minnow or tube jig. Best bite is early morning. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber near shore. Yellow Bass – Fair. 

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-70’s. The lake is 5.3 inches low. Water clarity is 27 inches. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a minnow on the rock reefs. Best bite is at first light or after sunset. Yellow Bass – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a piece of crawler or cut bait fished on the rock reefs or near vegetation. Shore anglers are having success fishing from the jetties. Bluegill – Slow: Try a small piece of crawler below a bobber in open areas of vegetation or near the rocks by the jetties. Channel Catfish – Good: Use stink bait or chicken liver on the windswept shore after sunset. 

Crystal Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Drift fish tube jigs in the dredge cut.

Lake Cornelia
Channel Catfish
 – Good: Try crawlers and chicken liver. Best bite is after sunset. Yellow Bass – Fair. 

Lower Pine Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Use a small tube jig or minnow from the jetty. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting on a variety of baits.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Use a kayak to access open areas in the vegetation. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished in open areas near shore. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use topwater lures.

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 78 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. A great bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Many anglers have observed high catch rates with a lot of sorting. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are hard to target specifically, but can be caught mixed with other panfish. The bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill have been biting like crazy recently. 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
Black Crappie
 – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 77 degrees. Fishing has been hit-or-miss lately. Perch and panfish bites have been good. Yellow Perch – Fair: Best bite is morning till 11:00 and mid-afternoon. Depths vary depending on the time of day. Walleye – Fair: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. 

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 76 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill have been biting like crazy recently with fish up to 10 inches seen. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers are working well. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Black Crappie – Good: Have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species. 

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent lately. The extended forecast calls for temperatures in the 70’s and lower 80’s. Most lake temperatures are in the upper 70’s to 80’s. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of August 5

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Black Crappie
– Fair: Try minnows on a small jig fished in deeper water near structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try a variety of bass baits along weed edges. Also try topwaters on calm evenings. Bluegill – Fair: Look for bluegills in deeper water near structure or try drifting down the middle to find suspended fish. 

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is around 80 degrees. Lake level is about 2 inches below the crest of the spillway. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Slow: If fishing from boat, try near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point, along the dredge shelf out in front of Denison Beach, and the steeper contours out from shore near Lakewood Point. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try traditional bass baits fished along shore in areas with rocks or vegetation or along docks. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or dip baits around the inlet bridge.

Brushy Creek Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Try weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures anywhere with woody structure. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch– Fair: Use a small jig and crawler or minnow near structure in 10-15 feet of water.  Bluegill – Fair: Pick up fish in 10-15 feet of water. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in about 15 feet of water.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water temperature is around 80 degrees.  Water clarity has lessened this week due to an increase in algae growth. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom along shore and near rocky structure. Walleye – Fair: Pick up walleye mid-lake while trolling along the dredge cuts using crankbaits or bottom bouncers. If fishing the dredge cuts that have vegetation on the bottom, use planer boards to pull crawler harnesses along or just above the weed lines. If fishing from shore, try a leech or crawler fished under a bobber in areas with a rocky substrate.  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. 

Swan Lake (Carroll County)
Water temperatures are in the low 80’s. Bluegill: Fair: Fish are 7- to 8-inches. Use a small jig fished under a bobber in areas around the fishing shelter and jetties.  Also drift in deeper water with a small jig to target suspended fish. Black Crappie: Fair: Fish are 6- to 10-inches. Try in 4-6 feet of water in rocky areas near the jetties and along vegetation edges. Largemouth Bass:  Fair.

Water temperatures are around 80 degrees in most district lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of July 29

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 within each district, 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. 

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
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 or try drifting down the middle to find suspended fish. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try a variety of bass baits along weed edges. Also try topwaters on calm evenings.

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is in the low 80’s. Water clarity is around 2 feet. Lake level is about 2 inches below the crest of the spillway. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: The inlet bridge area is a good place to focus efforts on catfish. The pump at the inlet bridge is running and catfish may gather around the flow.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try traditional bass baits fished along shore in areas with rocks or vegetation or along docks. Walleye – Slow: If fishing from boat, try near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point, along the dredge shelf out in front of Denison Beach, and the steeper contours out from shore near Lakewood Point.

Brushy Creek Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in about 15 feet of water. Bluegill – Fair: Pick up fish in 10-15 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures anywhere with woody structure. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a small jig and crawler or minnow near structure in 10-15 feet of water.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water temperature is in the low 80’s.  Water clarity is around 2 feet in most areas. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom along shore and near rocky structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Pick up largemouth bass along shore in areas with vegetation and along docks with traditional bass lures or weedless lures.  Walleye – Fair: Pick up walleye mid-lake while trolling along the dredge cuts using crankbaits or bottom bouncers. If fishing the dredge cuts that have vegetation on the bottom, use planer boards to pull crawler harnesses along or just above the weed lines. If fishing from shore, try a leech or crawler fished under a bobber in areas with a rocky substrate. 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 are in the low 80’s. Bluegill: Fair: Fish are 7- to 8-inches. Use a small jig fished under a bobber in areas around the fishing shelter and jetties.  Also drift in deeper water with a small jig to target suspended fish. Black Crappie: Fair: Fish are 6- to 10-inches. Try in 4-6 feet in rocky areas near the jetties and along vegetation edges. Largemouth Bass:  Fair.

Water temperatures are in the low 80’s in most district lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

 

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
– Slow: Drift fish a small minnow or tube jig. Best bite is early morning. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber near shore.  Yellow Bass – Slow: Drift fish a tube jig.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the low 80’s. The lake is 4.3 inches low. Water clarity is 25 inches. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler below a bobber in open areas of vegetation near shore. Channel Catfish – Good: Try stink bait or chicken liver on the wind swept shore after sunset. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a leech or crawler on the rock reefs. Best bite is at first light or after sunset. Yellow Bass – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a piece of crawler or cut bait fished on the rock reefs or near vegetation. Best bite is early morning.

Lake Cornelia
Channel Catfish
– Good: Try crawlers and chicken liver. Best bite is after sunset.

Lower Pine Lake
Black Crappie
– Fair: Use small tube jigs from the jetty. Largemouth Bass – Fair.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Use a kayak to access open areas in the vegetation. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished in open areas near shore. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use topwater lures.

Upper Pine Lake
Black Crappie
– Fair: Use your electronics to find suspended fish or drift fish a tube jig or small minnow. 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 82 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. A great bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are hard to target specifically, but can be caught mixed with other panfish. The bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill have been biting like crazy recently. 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
Black Crappie
– Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
– Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
Spirit lake has been experiencing natural turnover recently, stressing and killing some smaller fish when the cold anoxic water mixes with the warmer oxygenated water. Deeper water has been going anoxic lately, leaving it devoid of fish. The water temperature is 80 degrees. Fishing has been hit-or-miss lately. Perch and panfish bites have been good. Walleye – Fair: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Best bite is morning till 11:00 and mid-afternoon. Depths vary depending on the time of day.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 80 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill have been biting like crazy recently with fish up to 10 inches seen. Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers have been working very well. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Black Crappie – Good: Have been very picky lately, but can be easily caught if you aren’t afraid to switch things up. Can also be caught frequently while picking through other panfish or have been found around weed edges. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species.

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent lately. The extended forecast calls for a slight break in the heatwave, with highs in the 70’s and 80’s.Most lake temperatures are in the 80’s. Fish are under more stress with warmer water temperatures; if you plan to catch and release, try to release the fish as quickly and gently as possible. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of July 22

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 within each district, 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.

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
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 or try drifting down the middle to find suspended fish.. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try a variety of bass baits along weed edges. Also try topwaters on calm evenings.

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is around 80 degrees. Water clarity is around 2 feet. Lake level is about 2 inches below the crest of the spillway. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: The inlet bridge area is a good place to focus efforts on catfish. The pump at the inlet bridge is running and catfish may gather around the flow.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try traditional bass baits fished along shore in areas with rocks or vegetation or along docks. Walleye – Slow: If fishing from boat, try near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point, along the dredge shelf out in front of Denison Beach, and the steeper contours out from shore near Lakewood Point. 

Brushy Creek Lake
Water levels are at the crest of the spillway. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small jig tipped with a small minnow in about 15 feet of water. Bluegill – Fair: Pick up fish in 10-15 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures anywhere with woody structure. Walleye – Slow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use a small jig and crawler or minnow near structure in 10-15 feet of water.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Storm Lake has seen a recent increase in algae growth.  Water clarity and surface algae concentration varies based on location and wind direction. Bluegill – Fair: Try minnows or crawlers fished on a small jig under a bobber near vegetation edges and along docks. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom along shore and near rocky structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Pick up largemouth bass along shore in areas with vegetation and along docks with traditional bass lures or weedless lures.  Walleye – Fair: Picking up walleye 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 around 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 are around 80 degrees. Water clarity is around 2-3 feet. Black Crappie: Fair: Fish are 6- to 10-inches. Try in 4-6 feet in rocky areas near the jetties and along vegetation edges. Bluegill: Fair: Fish are 7- to 8-inches. Use a small jig fished under a bobber in areas around the fishing shelter and jetties.  Also drift in deeper water with a small jig to target suspended fish. Largemouth Bass:  Fair.

Water temperatures are around 80 degrees in most district lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Slow: Drift fish a small minnow or tube jig. Best bite is early morning. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber near shore.  Yellow Bass – Slow: Drift fish a tube jig.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the low 80’s. The lake is 3 inches low. Water clarity is 25 inches. Black Crappie – Slow. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler below a bobber in open areas of vegetation near shore. Channel Catfish – Good: Try stink bait or chicken liver on the windswept shore after sunset. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a leech or crawler on the rock reefs. Best bite is at first light or after sunset. Yellow Bass – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a piece of crawler or cut bait fished on the rock reefs or near vegetation. Best bite is early morning.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Use a kayak to access open areas in the vegetation. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished in open areas near shore. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use topwater lures.

Upper Pine Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Use your electronics to find suspended fish or drift fish a tube jig or small minnow. 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. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. A great bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are hard to target specifically, but can be caught mixed with other panfish. The bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. Bluegill – Good: 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
Black Crappie
 – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 78 degrees. Fishing has been hit-or-miss lately. Perch and panfish bites have been good. Walleye – Fair: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Many anglers have started to fish in shallower with slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Best bite is morning till 11:00 and mid-afternoon. Depths vary depending on the time of day.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 78 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Black Crappie – Good: Hard to target specifically, but crappie can be caught while picking through other panfish or around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers have been working very well. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species.

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent lately. The extended forecast calls for hot temperatures with highs in the 80’s and 90’s. Most lake temperatures are in the the upper 70’s or low 80’s. Fish are under more stress with warmer water temperatures; if you plan to catch and release, try to release the fish as quickly and gently as possible. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of July 15

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 within each district, 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. 

For current information, contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at the end of each district report.

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
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 or try drifting down the middle to find suspended fish.. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try a variety of bass baits along weed edges. Also try topwaters on calm evenings.

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-70’s. Water clarity is around 2 feet. Lake level is about 5 inches below the crest of the spillway. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Slow. Channel Catfish – Fair: The inlet bridge area is a good place to focus efforts on catfish. The pump at the inlet bridge is running and catfish may gather around the flow.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try traditional bass baits fished along shore in areas with rocks or vegetation or along docks. Walleye – Slow: If fishing from boat, try near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point, along the dredge shelf out in front of Denison Beach, and the steeper contours out from shore near Lakewood Point. 

Brushy Creek Lake
Water levels are at the crest of the spillway. Black Crappie – Fair: Most crappie are being picked up in about 15 feet of water. Bluegill – Fair: Pick up fish in 10-15 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures anywhere with woody structure.   Walleye – Slow: Use a live minnow or leech fished near rock and woody structure. 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.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water clarity is around 5 to 6 feet in most areas. Water temperatures are in the mid 70’s. Bluegill – Fair: Try minnows or crawlers fished on a small jig under a bobber near vegetation edges and along docks. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dip baits fished on the bottom along shore and near rocky structure. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Pick up largemouth bass along shore in areas with vegetation and along docks with traditional bass lures or weedless lures.  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 around 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 are in the mid 70’s. Black Crappie: Fair: Fish are 6- to 10-inches. Most have moved off shore. Bluegill: Fair: Fish are 7- to 8-inches. Use a small jig fished under a bobber in areas around the fishing shelter and jetties.  Also drift in deeper water with a small jig to target suspended fish. Largemouth Bass:  Fair.

Water temperatures are in the mid-70’s in most district lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Slow: Drift fish a small minnow or tube jig. Best bite is early morning. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber near shore.  Yellow Bass – Fair: Drift fish a tube jig.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-70’s. The lake is 2 inches low. Water clarity is 30 inches. Black Crappie – Slow. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler below a bobber in open areas of vegetation near shore. Channel Catfish – Good: Try a nightcrawler near rocky habitat. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a leech or crawler on the rock reefs. Best bite is at first light or after sunset. Yellow Bass – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a piece of crawler or cut bait fished on the rock reefs or near vegetation. Best bite is early morning. 

Lake Cornelia
Channel Catfish 
– Good: Try crawlers and chicken liver. Best bite is after sunset.

Lower Pine Lake
Channel Catfish
 – Fair: Try stink bait or liver fished near rocky habitat.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Use a kayak to access open areas in the vegetation. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished in open areas near shore. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use topwater lures.

Upper Pine Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Use your electronics to find suspended fish or drift fish a tube jig. 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 75 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons and vertical jigging and drop shot fishing. A great bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Black Crappie – Fair: Bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. Crappie are hard to target specifically but can be caught mixed with other panfish. Bluegill – Good: 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
Black Crappie
 – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good. 

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 73 degrees. Fishing has been hit-or-miss lately. Perch and panfish bites have been good. Walleye – Fair: Bite is hit-or-miss at dusk, but the day bite is improving. Use slip bobbers along weed edges. Yellow Perch – Fair: Best bite is morning till 11:00 and mid-afternoon. Depths vary depending on the time of day.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 73 degrees. Many anglers have been most successful with trolling, but jigging and casting has also been very good. Offshore fishing for bass has been great. Black Crappie – Good: Hard to target specifically, but crappie can be caught while picking through other panfish or around weed edges. Bluegill – Good: Jigging, casting, and slip bobbers have been working very well. Leeches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Walleye – Fair: Walleye have been hard to target, but many anglers have been catching them while fishing for other species. 

Offshore fishing for bass has been very good lately. The panfish/perch bite has been excellent lately. The extended forecast calls for relatively comfortable temperatures with highs in the 70’s and 80’s. Most lake temperatures are in the low to mid-70’s. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of July 8

 

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 within each district, 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.

 

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
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 or try drifting down the middle to find suspended fish.. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try a variety of bass baits along weed edges. Also try topwaters on calm evenings.

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is in the low 80’s. Water clarity is around 2 feet. Lake level is about 9.25 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. Channel Catfish – Fair: The inlet bridge area is a good place to focus efforts on catfish. The pump at the inlet bridge is running and catfish may gather around the flow.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try traditional bass baits fished along shore in areas with rocks or vegetation or along docks. Walleye – Slow: If fishing from shore, use a twister or a leech or live minnow fished under a bobber.  If fishing from boat, try near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point, along the dredge shelf out in front of Denison Beach, and the steeper contours out from shore near Lakewood Point.

Brushy Creek Lake
Water levels are at the crest of the spillway. Black Crappie – Fair: Some crappie are still being found near shore, but most are being picked up in about 15 feet of water. Bluegill – Fair: Pick up fish in 10-15 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try weedless lures along vegetation edges and traditional bass lures anywhere with woody structure.   Walleye – Slow: Use a live minnow or leech fished near rock and woody structure. 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.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water clarity is around 3 to 5 feet in most areas. Bluegill – Fair: Try minnows or crawlers fished on a small jig under a bobber near vegetation edges and along docks. Channel Catfish – Good: Use cut bait or troll crankbaits along shore; catfish are spawning. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Pick up largemouth bass along shore in areas with vegetation and along docks with traditional bass lures or weedless lures.  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.

Swan Lake (Carroll County)
Black Crappie: 
Fair: Fish are 6- to 10-inches. Most have moved off shore. Bluegill: Fair: Fish are 7- to 8-inches. Use a small jig fished under a bobber near shore. Largemouth Bass:  Fair.

Water temperatures are in the lower 80’s in most district lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Slow: Drift fish a small minnow or tube jig. Best bite is early morning. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber near shore.  Yellow Bass – Fair: Drift fish a tube jig.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-70’s. The lake is 3.12 inches low. Black Crappie – Slow. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler below a bobber in open areas of vegetation near shore. Channel Catfish – Good: Try a night crawler near rocky habitat. Walleye – Slow: Use a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation along the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a leech or crawler on the rock reefs. Best bite is at first light or after sunset. 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.

Lake Cornelia
Channel Catfish 
– Good: Try crawlers and chicken liver.

Rice Lake
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. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use topwater and weedless baits. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Use a kayak to access open areas in the vegetation. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber fished in open areas near shore. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use topwater lures.

Upper Pine Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Use your electronics to find suspended fish or drift fish a tube jig. 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 78 degrees. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons. Vertical jigging and drop shot fishing is working better and better lately. Fish are moving off shore making fishing by boat your best bet. A fair bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Black Crappie – Fair: Bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. 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
The Bully Bullhead Weekend Fishing Contest is July 10-11 with prizes given for many different fish species.  Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 76 degrees. Fishing has been hit-or-miss lately. Perch and panfish bites have been fair. 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, but the day bite is improving. Use slip bobbers along weed edges.

West Okoboji Lake
The water temperature is 76 degrees. Fish are moving just off shore, making shore fishing harder. Anglers slowly trolling weedlines have been successful catching a variety of species. Vertical jigging is improving lately. 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.

With the increased amount of boat traffic, early mornings or late evenings will be the best times to try fishing. The walleye day bite has picked up with many boaters finding fish in shallower. The panfish/perch bite has been relatively good lately. The extended forecast calls for relatively comfortable temperatures with highs in the 70s and 80s. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of July 1

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 within each district, 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.

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake

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 low 80’s. Water clarity is around 2 feet. 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: If fishing from shore, use a twister or a leech or live minnow fished under a bobber.  If fishing from boat, try near the rock pile off Cottonwood Point, along the dredge shelf out in front of Denison Beach, and the steeper contours out from shore near Lakewood Point. 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: 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 lower 80’s in most district lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
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 – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber near shore.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-70’s. The lake is 2.64 inches low. Black Crappie – Slow. 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 after sunset. 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.

Crystal Lake
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.

Lake Cornelia
Channel Catfish – Good: Try crawlers and chicken liver.

Rice Lake
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: Use your electronics to find suspended fish or drift fish a tube jig. 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. Many anglers have had success with slip bobbers/spoons. Vertical jigging and drop shot fishing is working better and better lately. Fish are moving off shore making fishing by boat your best bet. A fair bluegill/crappie/yellow bass bite can be found trolling weed lines. Black Crappie – Fair: Bite has improved in and around docks and hoists. 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
Find most fish species further off shore. Yellow Perch – Good.  Bluegill – Fair.  Black Crappie – Fair.  Walleye – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Panfishing has been good for anglers trolling weed lines. Vertical jigging is improving. Black Crappie – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake. Bluegill – Fair. Pumpkinseed – Good.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye – Fair: Try using slip bobbers and finding weed lines.

Spirit Lake
The water temperature is 79 degrees. Fishing has been hit-or-miss lately. Perch and panfish bites have been fair. 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 78 degrees. Fish are moving just off shore, making shore fishing harder. Anglers slowly trolling weedlines have been successful catching a variety of species. Vertical jigging is improving lately. 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.

Stay safe this 4th of July weekend as many new or unexperienced boaters take to the water! With the increased amount of boat traffic, early mornings or late evenings will be the best times to try fishing. Fish are moving just off shore, making trolling and fishing by boat your best bet for success. The panfish/perch bite has been relatively good lately. The extended forecast calls for a weekend of hot temperatures with highs in the 80’s and 90’s. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.


Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of June 24

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
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.

Beeds Lake
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.

Clear Lake
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.

Crystal Lake
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.

Lake Smith
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.

Rice Lake
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.

Minnewashta Lake
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.

Spirit Lake
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.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of June 17

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 within each district, 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. 

For current information, contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at the end of each district report.

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
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 in the low 80’s. Lake level is about 9 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 – 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.

Brushy Creek Lake
Water levels are near 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. Walleye – Fair: Use a live minnow or leech fished 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 around 80 degrees. Water clarity is good. 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.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Channel Catfish – Good: Use cut bait or troll crankbaits along shore; catfish are spawning. Walleye – Fair: Try trolling crankbaits and spinners with crawlers along the dredge cuts during mid-day. 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 in the low 80’s. 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 low to mid 80’s in most district lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
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.

Clear Lake
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: Use a small jig tipped with cut bait fished in the open areas of the vegetation. Best bite is early morning.

Crystal Lake
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.

Lake Smith
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. 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 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.

Minnewashta Lake
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.

Spirit Lake
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 fair to poor unless you’re right on top of them. Bluegill are starting to sit on beds. The water temperature is 79 degrees. 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. 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 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. 

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 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. This has caused noticeable mortality of some fish. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of June 10

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 within each district, 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. 

For current information, contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at the end of each district report.

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
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.

Browns Lake
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.

Beeds Lake
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.

Clear Lake
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. 

Crystal Lake
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.

Lake Smith
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.

Minnewashta Lake
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.

Spirit Lake
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.

 

Top Iowa Fishing Spots for the Week of June 3

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 within each district, 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.

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
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 70 degrees with about 2 feet of water clarity. Lake level is about 5 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 picked up along shore.  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 using.

Browns Lake
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
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. 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.

Moorehead Park Pond
Water temperature is in the low 70’s.  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 around 70 degrees. Water clarity is about 8 feet. If fishing from shore, evenings or low light conditions may be most productive due to the water clarity.  Offshore bite for walleye and white bass has picked up. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or dipped catfish baits fished on the bottom along shore. Walleye – Good: Walleye fishing has been productive in the main lake. Try trolling crankbaits and spinners with crawlers along the dredge cuts. 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 are in the low 70’s. 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 offshore. Largemouth Bass:  Fair.

Water temperatures are in the low 70’s in most district lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: 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 – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber near shore.

Briggs Woods Lake
Water temperature is in the low 70’s. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills are on the beds near shore. Try a small piece of crawler or jig in 2-3 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Fair.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the lower 70’s. Black Crappie – Good: Use a small minnow fished in the open pockets in the rushes. Early morning bite is best. Bluegill – Good: Try a small piece of crawler below a bobber in open areas of vegetation. 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 after sunset. Yellow Bass – Fair: Anglers are still catching fish around the Island; use small hair jigs. Best bite is at first light. 

Crystal Lake
Black Crappie
 – Excellent: 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.

Lake Smith
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.

Silver Lake (Worth)
The vegetation is getting thick in some areas; fish the open pockets. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use dark colored plastics fished around vegetation and near the jetty. Bluegill – Fair: Try a piece of crawler under a bobber fished near vegetation.

Upper Pine Lake
Black Crappie
 – Good: 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.