Northern Illinois Fishing Reports

Northern Illinois Fishing Report- July 11th, 2014

Chain: The fishing has really slowed down for the walleyes with the warmer weather and high water. Bouncing jig and minnow combinations around the pilings has been putting some nice fish in the boats. The panfish bite has slowed a bit.  Small tube jigs under a float tipped with live bait has been a great producer. The shallow portions of the bays seem to be producing quite well also. Find the newer weeds in 8 feet of water or less and the gills will be there, but look for deeper water for the white bass and crappies. The largemouths have completed their spawn and have moved out to the outside edges of the weedlines. Fishing Texas rigged craws or ribbon tail worms have been doing well as well as running spinnerbaits parallel with weed edges. Skipping docks with stick plastics has also been a good bet.

Argyle Lake: Channel cats fair on crawlers and dip baits late in day. Bass fair on plastics and spinnerbaits. Crappies fair on minnows.

Lake Carlton: Crappies fair on minnows. Bluegills fair on waxies and crickets. Channel cats fair on dip baits and crawlers. Bass slow on plastics and crankbaits. Walleyes fair on crawlers.

McMaster-Snakeden: Bass fair on plastics and crankbaits fished along deep edges with a few on topwater real early. Bluegills good in most areas but a little smaller on waxies and crickets along outer weed edges. Channel cats fair on cut baits, leeches and crawlers in evenings.

Pierce Lake: Bass good on spinnerbaits, top lures and minnows. Bluegills good on red worms and waxies. Crappies fair on minnows.

Shabbona: Bass fair along weed edges on plastics, crankbaits and crawlers. Bluegills fair on wax worms and part crawler along shore cover and weed edges. Channel cats good on cut baits, dip baits and crawlers. Muskies fair on spinners along weed edges near no-motor area. Walleyes fair along weed edges (with breaks even better) on jig and crawler or leeches.

Storey: Bass fair and small on plastics and crawlers. Bluegills fair on wax worms and part crawler. Channel cats fair with most average or small on crawlers and dip baits. Walleyes fair on crawlers.

Braidwood: Bluegill fishing is very good on waxworms and red worms at Mazonia. Good bass fishing at Mazonia, but clear water can make for tough fishing. Catfish and bluegills biting fair on worms and nightcrawlers.

Heidecke: Bass fair on cut baits and dip baits. Crappies fair on minnows drifted out deeper. Walleyes fair on live bait rigs. A couple of muskies were caught during recent storms.

DuPage Forest Preserve: Bass and bluegills good in deep water. Catfish being caught on stinkbaits and worms.

Lake Michigan (Chicago Area): Kings and coho are spread out pretty good and the bite has gotten tough over the last few weeks. Trolling in the 80-140 feet of water range seems to be the broad area as of late. Magnum spoons on downriggers or on leadcore have proven to be the best producers. The coho are hitting small dodgers and flies trolled with inline weights on boards. Vary your speeds up to trigger the fish. The best speeds have been around 2.3 mph SOG. Some of the popular setups have been: Red 00 dodger & green/gold fly behind weight on a planer; Orange 00 dodger & Blue/purple peanut fly behind weight on a planer back 100 feet; an orange Sonic dodger & Sigg’s Rigs Mardi Gras Coho Candy fly on a Fireline dipsy back 85 feet.
The smallmouth bass are in the spawning period with some having already moved off the beds. The best producers are larger profile shad color jigs worked slowly or dropshot rigs with 4-inch minnow style plastics. Goby imitating baits have also been starting to work well.
The perch are around for the shore anglers, but the bite has been sporadic. Fishermen in the boats are also having trouble finding the fish. The south end of the lake has been your best bet. Softshells and larger minnows on drop-shot rigs or on spinners are the best presentations.
Lake Zurich: There has been a good topwater bite for bass. Poppers or zara spooks worked near the shallow weedbeds have been offering fishermen quick and explosive action. The fish are getting aggressive on the outside edges of the weeds as well and are being caught on medium diver crankbaits or lipless cranks.

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Central Fishing Illinois Reports

Central Illinois Fishing Report - July 11th, 2014

Banner Marsh: Bass fair on plastics and crankbaits along weed edge with some on topwater, too. Eastpoint doing well. Bluegills fair on waxies and crickets. Channel cats fair on cut baits and dip baits.

Bloomington: Bass fair near deep ends of laydowns on plastics and crankbaits.   Bluegills good on waxies and crickets.   Channel cats fair on cut baits and dip baits. Hybrids were fair but have slowed some recently on swimbaits.

Charleston Side Channel: Bluegills good. Look for them around the docks and in area ponds with wax worms, crickets, and meal worms.

Clinton Lake: Channel cats good. An angler reported catching 18-20 fish on a trot line with leeches.

Dawson Lake: Crappies good. Anglers are finding some fish at the north end by the dam with wax worms, minnows, or crappie jigs. Bass good. Fish hitting on flies down the middle by the swimming pool. Channel cats good. Cast stinkbait or chicken livers along the shorelines.

Decatur: Crappies good. Look for fish near the 105 bridge with minnows very early in the morning. Bluegills good. An angler reported catching 57 fish with worms. Walleyes good. Anglers are successful below the dam with white spinners. Channel cats good. Fish are hitting on leeches near shallow logs, brush, and laydowns.

Evergreen: Bass good on plastics, swimbaits, and crankbaits along weed edges. Bluegills good on waxies and crickets and many small fish. Channel cats fair on cut baits and dip baits. Crappies good on minnows near deeper brush.

Lincoln Trail Lake: Crappies are deep, but still biting on minnows. Bluegills good on worms around the docks. Channel cats good. Anglers have been successful with nightcrawlers and chicken livers.

Mattoon: Crappies fair. Fish deep near brush. Lots of smaller sized fish biting.   Bluegills fair. Look for them around docks and rocks. Bass good. Recent tournaments reported the winning stringers weighing in at 17 pounds and 13 pounds; the big fish was 5 pounds; lots of smaller sized fish in the 14.25-inch range; spinners and worms are favorite baits. Channel cats excellent. Anglers are drift fishing and also using bank poles; baiting hooks with everything possible: shrimp and shad are very popular baits.

Mill Creek Lake: Bluegills very good. Wax worms and crickets are attracting attention near the docks and weedlines.   Bass good. Anglers are using jigs and crankbaits; check out the newly covered grass and habitat. Channel cats good. Fish are biting on everything, even jigs as fishermen fish for other species. Look along the banks, near logs, wood and weeds.

Mingo: Crappies fair. Smaller sized fish are biting on minnows and crappie jigs if you can locate them in deeper water.   Bluegills good. Look for them near the docks and weedlines with wax worms, crickets and red wigglers.

Shelbyville: Crappies have slowed. Fish have moved deep; look for them with a minnow near submerged brush. Saugers fair. A few are being taken from along the rip-rap and shallows. White bass are good. Anglers finding fish with a jig and minnow near the Williams Street Bridge and Decatur Ski Club.

Vermilion: Crappies fair. There are still some biting; mostly smaller sized in deeper water. Bluegills good. Cast wax worms or red wigglers under a bobber near weeds.

Sangchris: Bass fair to spotty using plastics, jig/plastic and crankbaits fished deep. Some topwater early or late.   Bluegills fair using waxies and crickets along weed edges. Channel cats fair using cut baits, leeches and dip bait. Early morning or late evening in the area at north part of lake.

Silver Lake: Bass good using crankbaits. Crappies good using minnows. Bluegills good using red wigglers. Channel cats excellent using minnows.

Springfield: Bass fair using plastics, shaky head jigs and crankbaits fished deep. Channel cats fair using most baits. Some crappies being caught in deeper water on minnows and jigs.

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Southern Illinois Fishing Reports

Southern Illinois Fishing Report - July 11th, 2014

Crab Orchard Lake: Bass good using topwater and jigs. Bluegills good using wax worms and crickets. Crappies good using minnows and jigs. Channel cats good using nightcrawlers, shad and leeches.

Kinkaid Lake: Bass good. Channel cats good using just about everything. Early morning and late evening.   Bluegills good using wax worms and red wigglers. Crappies good in deeper water.

Little Grassy: Bass good using jigs.   Channel cats good using worms.   Bluegills good using crickets and meal worms.

Murphysboro: Bluegills good using wax worms and red wigglers in shallow water. Crappies good in deeper water.   Channel cats good in the early morning and late evening.

Newton Lake: Bass good using plastics. Crappies good using minnows and jigs.

Rend Lake: Bass good using worms, black/blue jigs, minnows & spinnerbaits. Fish in shallow bays near brush cover and bushes. Fish around bridges and along the rocks. Reports of fish being caught around Jackie Branch, Sandusky Cove, and below the dam.  Crappies excellent using pink/white tube jigs, meal worms, small & medium minnows. Spawning fish are biting around 1 to 3 feet deep in the bushes. Fish the main lake drop off areas. Try the Gun Creek area. From shore fish near structures, hot spots are Jackie Branch, Sandusky, Sailboat Harbor, Marcum coves, and Ina Boat Ramp. Bluegills good using crickets, worms, wax worms, meal worms small jigs. Fish in the back of necks and on flat shallow banks and on the rocks. Try fishing shallow with crickets, worms or small jigs. From shore try Sailboat Harbor.   Channel cats excellent using Sonnys stinkbait, Hoss Hawg Bait, leeches, nightcrawlers and large minnows. Recent success when fishing a few feet inside the bushes from the lake side. Otherwise: Try the Waltonville Dam, Turnip Patch, Jackie Branch, and North Sandusky Day Use Area. Set line 3 to 4 feet from the shore over rocks. Try leeches in moving water. Try deeper water in the middle of the lake. Drift fish the flats. White bass fair using jig/curly tail jigs and inline spinners. Fish in shallow bays near brush cover and bushes. Fish around along the rocks and dropoffs. Reports of fish being caught around the 154 bridges.

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Illinois Rivers Fishing Reports

Illinois Rivers Fishing Report - July 11th, 2014

Fox River: The river is running very high and there have not been a lot of reports, however you can still get out and find some fish. The carp are beginning their spawn and can be caught on white flies fished on top in the shallows. The channel cats are hitting very well in the high current areas. Fish chicken livers or cut bait behind an egg sinker and you will be rewarded with some good catches.

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