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North West Ohio Fishing Reports

Northwest Ohio Fishing Report - December 19th, 2014

DISTRICT 2 – Northwest Region

Nettle Lake (Williams County) - Nettle Lake is 115 acres in size with 3.8 miles of shoreline. Most of the shoreline is privately owned, which limits public access. A public boat ramp is located off CR 4.75 at the southwest corner or the lake. Anglers should have good luck this time of year fishing for crappies. Try fishing under the privately owned boat docks from a boat. Anglers should also try for crappie using minnows along the edges. Nettle Lake has some unique boating regulations that anglers need to be aware of. There is no horsepower limit; however, between 6 p.m. and 10 a.m., boats must operate at an idle speed. Between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. there are no speed restrictions.

Pleasant Hill Reservoir (Richland-Ashland county line) - With 781 acres of water and 13 miles of shoreline, Pleasant Hill Reservoir has plenty to offer. The reservoir is located next to Mohican State Forest, two miles southwest of Perrysville. The boat ramp and marina are located on Covert Road, right off State Route 95. Crappie should be biting this time of year. Try fishing for crappie along the rocky ledge on the southern shore near the southern bend and in the small coves along the southern part of the reservoir.

Findlay Reservoir #2 (Hancock County) - Findlay Reservoir #2 is southwest of Findlay on Township Road 207. It is 629 acres in size with 4.2 miles of shoreline. There is a full boat ramp at the southern shore of the reservoir. Depth of the reservoir ranges from 18 feet to 37 feet. Fishing from a boat usually offers the best success. Excellent numbers of yellow perch and white bass can be found, along with good numbers of crappie and walleye. Try casting jigs and tubes into the windward shore for walleye. There is a 9.9-horsepower limit on the reservoir.

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North East Ohio Fishing Reports

Northeast Ohio Fishing Report - December 19th, 2014

Northeast Ohio Lakes - Despite cold temperatures, the bass fishing has been quietly going fairly strong.  Good catches of largemouth bass have been reported in many lakes including Mogadore, Wingfoot, Springfield, and several Portage Lakes reservoirs. Cold-water presentations such as jerkbaits, jigs, and Vib-Es have been key.

Cuyahoga River (Cuyahoga, Geauga, Portage, and Summit counties) - Fishing for northern pike is picking up in the Cuyahoga River. Consistently producing regions of the river include the Fuller Park area in Kent, Rt. 303 bridge area near Shalersville, and the area in and around Mantua. Remember to obtain written permission to wade-fish on private property. As winter gets into full swing and water temperatures drop, pike begin their feeding frenzy, putting away energy reserves for both winter survival and their early spring spawn. Try fishing with large baits and lures that mimic prey fish such as shad, suckers, and chubs. Examples include larger crankbaits, jerkbaits, swimbaits, lipless crankbaits, and large spinners. The use of a small leader will minimize the chances of a pike biting off your line.

West Branch Reservoir (Portage County) - Some major bonus action has been taking place for walleye anglers out at West Branch. While trolling for walleyes, anglers’ rods are being pummeled by some large muskies. This recent bump in activity could provide adrenaline seekers a chance at quite a rush. To specifically target muskies, try trolling cranks, possibly downsizing to match shad, and running the bait in the prop wash. If muskie fishing is too much heart-pumping action for you, you can try to find the crappie bite. Crappie are starting to work in shallower water. Most schools are still being found suspended around structure or contour breaks. Small jigs tipped with a minnow have been the way to go lately.

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Central Ohio Fishing Reports

Central Ohio Fishing Report - December 19th, 2014

Delaware Lake (Delaware) - This 1,017 acre lake north of Columbus provides excellent crappie fishing.  Fish the primary points of the old creek channel using jig and minnows suspended by a float around woody cover. Largemouth bass can be caught on tubes and other plastics around woody cover and primary points. If we get good ice cover sometime in late December/early January, Delaware would be a good spot to try for panfish, particularly in the lake’s many coves.

Hoover Reservoir (Delaware and Franklin Counties) - For crappies, target creek channels with wood that are close to shallower water.  Try jig and minnows around submerged timber. Saugeye are located by the dam in good numbers right now. Use plastics or crankbaits fished close to the bottom for best results.

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South East Ohio Fishing Reports

Southeast Ohio Fishing Report - December 19th, 2014

Wolf Run Lake (Noble County) - The crappie bite should be starting to pick up at this 220-acre lake near Caldwell. Try small spinners in six to eight feet of waer around submerged structure.  Structure location is marked with orange paint along the shore.

Salt Fork Lake (Guernsey County) - Fish for crappie around submerged brush piles and structure using pink and chartreuse twister tails tipped with a minnow. Most crappie are in the 9- to 10-inch range but fish up to 14 inches can be found. The Morning Glory Ramp toward the dam and at the covered bridge is usually successful for anglers. Fishing for saugeye is best near the beach or shallow flats using twisters, stickbaits, or blade baits.

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South West Ohio Fishing Reports

Southwest Ohio FIshing Report - December 19th, 2014

C. J. Brown Reservoir (Clark County) - Walleye fishing continues to improve. Try early morning boat angling fishing jigs tipped with a nightcrawler over the mid-lake humps and in the north end of the lake. Remember there is a 15-inch minimum size limit and daily bag of six on walleye. Bluegills can be caught around the rocky shorelines of the dam and the marina. Also, try fishing the wooden piling structures near the boat ramp and campground. Use waxworms or red worms for bluegill, fished under a bobber.

Indian Creek Wildlife Area (Brown County) - Try your luck on bluegill and sunfish using red worms, earthworms, or waxworms.  Keep the bait about two to three feet deep. The Family Fishing Pond is best and is marked and accessible from Campbell Road in the wildlife area.

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South West Ohio Fishing Reports

Lake Erie Region Fishing Report - December 19th, 2014

• The daily bag limit for walleye in Ohio waters of Lake Erie is six fish per angler. The minimum size limit for walleye is 15 inches.
• The daily bag limit for yellow perch is 30 fish per angler in all Ohio waters of Lake Erie.
• The trout and salmon daily bag limit is two fish per angler. The minimum size limit is 12 inches.
• The daily bag limit for black bass (largemouth and smallmouth bass) on Ohio waters of Lake Erie is five fish per angler. The minimum size limit for black bass is 14 inches.

Walleye

Where: Water temperatures have dropped into the upper to mid 30s and walleye have been caught recently from Cedar Point to Vermilion and around Cleveland Harbor.

How: Anglers trolling are using deep diving crankbaits (deep Husky Jerks) and shallow diving crankbaits (Ripsticks, Husky Jerks, and Perfect 10s) in the top half of the water column. Anglers fishing from shore and piers are casting shallow diving crankbaits.

On Dec. 9, Cleveland Metroparks stocked Wallace and Ranger lakes with a combined total of 1,000 pounds of rainbow trout. The Rocky River is stained, but fishable, and anglers reported catching some steelhead. As we move into late December, highlight species targeted by anglers in Cleveland Metroparks include steelhead trout, walleyes, and panfish. Late November was among the best of the year for steelhead in Cleveland Metropark local streams, with plenty of the big trout caught over the extended Thanksgiving weekend. The Rocky River is currently exhibiting moderately low flow, but rain in the forecast could change that. Various sites along the Cleveland lakefront continue to offer opportunities for steelhead and night walleyes.

The Rocky River and other area streams have offered some of the best steelhead fishing yet this season. Nickel-size spawn sacs (salmon or trout eggs) took the most fish when the water was stained, but the fish are now hitting diverse offerings in the clearing flows and increased fishing pressure. Changing up among several offerings is a good plan under current conditions, with minnows (live or salted), small jigs tipped with maggots, white tube jigs, salmon egg mimicking beads, and various fly patterns (small eggs, streamers, and nymphs) all producing a share of the fish. Some anglers also reported success using wobbling flatfish style plugs. Steelhead are well distributed throughout the watershed at this time, with the freshest fish concentrated in the river north of Morley Ford/Lorain Road bridge.  There is a healthy mix of skippers (smaller 15-18-inch steelhead) and adult steelhead in the river, and stray brown trout (from Pennsylvania and New York programs) continue to turn up on a weekly basis.

The shoreline fishing at E. 55th and E. 72nd accesses are offering great prospects, with the lake very calm at the time of this writing.  Anglers have been primarily targeting steelhead and walleyes at these locations, as well as the rocks at Edgewater and Wildwood parks.  Small jigs tipped with emerald shiner minnows and a few maggots two to four feet under a bobber accounted for many of the steelhead caught there recently, although a spawn sack, minnow (on a small hook, not a jig), or nightcrawler dangled a few feet under a bobber can also be productive. Spoons can also be worth trying when the fish are aggressive. The night walleye bite casting from shore at E. 72nd remains good, with Husky Jerks, Rattlin' Rogues/Perfect 10s, and rattle-type shad crankbaits being among the top producers. Wise anglers bring a long-handled net when fishing these sites, and be very careful on those slippery shoreline rocks.

In early October, a total of 1,000 pounds of rainbow trout were stocked at the Ohio and Erie Canal fishing area and some of these fish still remain. The trout limit at this site is five fish per angler per day.  The first round of winter trout stocking in Metroparks lakes and ponds is currently scheduled for early next week at Wallace Lake.
 

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