Illinois Fishing Reports for Rivers – November 29th, 2012
Water levels are fluctuating because of the draw-down and currents are high so use caution when wading. This water change has created a good walleye bite. Use minnow baits in the deeper holes and near bridge pilings. Night fishing has proven to be most effective. Jig and minnow combinations worked on the edges of the holes are also working well.
The catfish bite has died as the fish have gone into their wintering holes. Smaller baits with a lot of scent are best. Cut shad or minnows fished near the deeper holes.
Smallmouth action is hot. Live minnow rigs or small jerkbaits in standard minnow colors worked near fast current.
Fish can be caught, but now is the time to look for some of the warm-water discharges found along the river. Fish using live minnows with a small hook and a few split shot about 12 inches above the hook. Cast into the eddies. Also bouncing jigs with white or crawfish colored twister tails can produce some respectable fish. Work the jig slow and fish the current seams and slack water. There have been some good schools of white bass showing up as well. Fish the eddies with a minnow or a minnow-style bait, and once you locate a school, you will have constant action.
Walleyes and saugers are starting to pick up. Jigs with live bait and trolling three-way rigs have been most effective. The fish are being found on the flats that are created in the inside river bends.
The saugers are up on the flats in the 12 to 14 feet of water range off of the main river channels. Vertical jigging jigs with minnows or pulling three-way rigs is working. Also casting or vertical jigging blade-style baits.
The white bass bite is also picking up with blade baits and jig/twister combinations working well. White jig and twister combos with a minnow are quite productive. Blade baits will put some of the larger more aggressive fish in the boat. Look for some good current breaks around the islands as well as the mouth of tributary waters that are coming into the main river.