Sunday, February 5th, 2023
Sunday, February 5th, 2023

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Anglers chasing walleye, panfish, cats all over


Big Darby Creek (Franklin and Madison counties) – Anglers can
enjoy wading, bank fishing, or float fishing here on one of the few
streams in central Ohio containing all three species of black bass
found in Ohio. Smallmouth bass, spotted bass, largemouth bass, rock
bass, channel catfish, flathead catfish, sunfish, and carp provide
good fishing opportunities. Use hellgrammites and soft craws fished
in the pools below shallow riffles for smallmouth bass. Top-water
plugs, surface baits, and imitation baits fished near aquatic
vegetation work best when fishing for largemouth bass and spotted

Deer Creek Lake (Fayette, Madison, and Pickaway counties) –
Saugeye can be caught in the tailwaters using jigs and twister
tails, especially after a water release. The Tick Ridge area is a
good location to fish for white bass. Use small spinners or live
bait to take these fish that measure eight to 12 inches. Areas with
cover such as downed trees are good places to fish for crappies
using minnows suspended beneath a bobber. Crappies must be nine
inches or longer to keep.

O’Shaughnessy Reservoir (Delaware County) – This 845-acre
reservoir in northwest Columbus offers excellent summer fishing for
largemouth bass and bluegills. Use top-water baits, 6-inch plastic
worms, and live bait in areas along the west shoreline that have
fallen trees and submerged brush piles. Early morning and late
evening are the best times to fish. Bass will measure 12 to 18
inches. Areas with submerged shoreline cover offer good bluegill
fishing when using small worms and larval baits fished under a

Knox Lake (Knox County) – This lake is among the top-rated bass
tournament lakes in Ohio, consistently producing the highest catch
rates for bass above 12 inches. Knox has a minimum 18-inch length
limit on bass, which has created a sizeable population of
largemouth and an exceptional fishery. The woody shoreline and
areas with aquatic vegetation are the best places to pursue
largemouth bass. Areas with shoreline cover are also good places to
fish for crappies, bluegill, and channel catfish. Now is a great
time to go after catfish using shrimp or nightcrawlers fished along
the lake bottom. Five-thousand channel cat yearlings were stocked
in 2005. Knox has a 10- horsepower limit.


Independence Dam (Henry County) – Flathead catfish in the 25- to
30-pound range have been taken recently. Late afternoons and
evenings are the best times. Live bluegill fished on a hook near
the dam is what is working the best.

Van Wert Reservoir (Van Wert County) – Great catches of rainbow
trout have been reported here. Morning is the time to fish for
them. Minnows or power baits have been producing the best catches.
The northeast corner of the reservoir is the hotspot. Channel
catfish are hitting well, too. Morning is the best time.
Still-fishing with night crawlers along the north east shore seems
to the best spot.

Pleasant Hill Lake (Richland County) – Saugeye are being caught
in good numbers during daytime and nighttime hours. A two- to
four-inch piece of worm or a jig are working the best by either
drifting or casting. Fish the deeper water areas and keep the bait
down between 15 to 24 feet. Crappies are being taken during the
daylight hours by fishing a minnow under a bobber. Catfish are
being caught in the late afternoon and early evening. Shrimp,
liver, or shad fished off of the bottom is working the best. A good
spot seems to be around the Baron Road area.

Clear Fork Reservoir (Richland County) – Crappies are being
caught in the late afternoon or the early morning hours. Minnows
fished under a slip bobber are working the best. Try fishing near
the sailboat club or picnic area No. 2 or No. 3. Catfish are being
caught as well in the late afternoon or evening. The Bowers Road
area is best.

Little Auglaize River (Putnam County) – Bullheads are being
caught in the afternoons by fishing nightcrawlers two to three feet
under a slip-bobber. Bluegills also are being caught in the
afternoons by casting and reeling night crawlers or still-fishing
with bobbers. Fishing is best near the Ottoville Quarry.

Grand Lake St. Marys (Mercer and Auglaize counties) — Channel
catfish are being caught by anglers using minnows when fishing in
shallow water. In deeper water, channel catfish are being caught on
shrimp or nightcrawlers fished off of the bottom or tight line
along the bottom. Use a No. 2/0 long-shanked hook. Casting from the
lake into the rocky areas is very productive for catfish. A
particularly good spot is Windy Point along the west bank. Cast
into the rocky riprap areas or the mouths of the creeks entering
the lake. Bluegills are being a caught by anglers using wax worms
on ice jigs. Keep the bait under a bobber and about six to eight
inches deep. Fish the bait along the shore, near any type of
structure, including the rocky areas and seawalls, and into the
channels. Largemouth bass are being caught by anglers using black,
black-purple, or pumpkinseed colored jigs. Keep the bait about a
foot deep and close to the shoreline in water about two to three
feet deep.

Outdoorsman, 419-394-5769


Tuscarawas River (Tuscarawas County) – Anglers are catching fair
numbers of smallmouth bass, saugeyes, and channel catfish near the
Dover dam off of State Route 800. Note that most of the land along
the river is in private ownership and access from shore is limited.
A public boat ramp has been constructed east of Tuscarawas, Ohio,
on Tuscarawas Road. A fair number of eight- to 14-inch smallmouth
bass are hitting jigs and crayfish fished on the bottom. Targeting
rocky structure just out of the main current or fishing underwater
structure are providing good results. Saugeyes averaging 10 to 17
inches are also hitting jigs and curly tails in the deeper pools of
water near structure and wooden debris. Tipping a jig with a minnow
or earthworm works well, too. Channel catfish between 10 and 16
inches are also being caught in better than average numbers.
Fishing with cut bait, stink bait, chicken liver, or earthworms
near undercut banks and areas with wooden debris piles has been
productive for catfish.

Mosquito Lake (Trumbull County) – Anglers are catching good
numbers of walleyes while trolling crankbaits in 14 feet of water.
The best place seems to be between the island and the causeway on
the north end of the lake. Boat anglers should also trying jigging
for walleye in the weed beds. On the west side of the lake,
largemouth bass are biting close to shore. There is unlimited
horsepower at this 7,241-acre lake. Wheelchair accessible shoreline
facilities are available.

Causeway Sporting Goods, 330-637-7076

Spencer Lake (Medina County) – Channel catfish are being caught
by shore and boat anglers. Anglers should concentrate their efforts
near fishing piers and inshore areas using chicken livers, stink
bait, and minnows. The most productive times to fish have been
early morning and evening hours; however, some channel catfish have
been taken throughout the daytime hours. Fisheries data collected
from this lake during 2005 indicated that the largemouth bass
population has a considerable number of bass exceeding 15


East Fork Lake (Clermont County) — Largemouth bass are being
caught by using white spinner baits, shiners, large minnows, or
four-inch artificial worms colored black. Cast along the points,
buck brush, along the banks and in areas with submerged trees or
brush. Jig the worm on the bottom. Keep the spinner bait moving in
the top two to three feet of water. Channel catfish are being
caught by anglers using chicken livers, soft craws, shrimp, or
nightcrawlers. Larger channel catfish are being caught on the soft

Boars Head Bait & Carry Out, 513-724-1211.

Cowan Lake (Clinton County) – Crappies are being caught by
anglers trolling small minnows and jigs as bait. Fish the bait in
five to 15 feet of water. Use a No. 1/0 or a No. 4 hook. Productive
spots are back in the coves, down on south bank past the sailing
club, and the south beach. Saugeyes are striking on all sorts of
artificial and live baits. Good places include Campers Cove and the
north shore. Bluegills are being caught by anglers using wax worms
as bait. From the shoreline, fish the bait off of the bottom in two
to three feet of water and around structure.

Rocky Fork Lake (Highland County) – Crappies are being caught by
anglers fishing live crappie minnows, wax worms, or two-inch
twister tails in three feet of water or deeper. Use a fine-wire
hook in the size range of No. 6 to No. 8. Keep the bait under a
slip bobber and off of the bottom. Bluegill and sunfish are being
caught by anglers using wax worms as bait. Place the bait on a No.
6 fine-wire hook and cast into areas with submerged trees and
brush. Keep the bait under a bobber or slip-bobber and between two
to three feet deep. Fish the bait along the shorelines and docks.
Channel catfish are being caught by anglers using whole shad, cut
shad, goldfish, chubs or chicken liver. Largemouth bass are being
caught by anglers using shad, soft craws, rooster tails, Eerie
Dearies, blade baits, or nightcrawlers as bait.


Monroe Lake (Monroe County) – Bluegill fishing has been
excellent at this 39-acre lake. Largemouth bass are starting to
bite on plastic baits; try salamanders, rubber worms, and top-water
baits. This lake has an active 15-inch minimum length limit for
largemouth bass and a 10 horsepower limit.

Dillon Reservoir (Muskingum County) – Anglers have been reeling
in channel cats, sunfish, largemouth bass, and carp at this
1,403-acre reservoir. For great catfishing, try the backwaters and
below the spillway; anglers have been catching channel cats in the
18-inch range as well as yellow bullheads. Try cut-bait and chicken
livers fished tight-line along the bottom. For sunfish, shore
anglers have been successful with a worm fished under a bobber.
Largemouth bass have been reeled in at the mouth of the tunnel
using worm and bobber, as well as off the shoreline near the marina
using green colored spinner baits. For carp, the dock off Route 146
is the hotspot.

Wills Creek Reservoir (Coshocton County) – Fishing in the
evenings for catfish in the spillway area below the dam is usually
productive for both channel cats and flatheads, employing chicken
livers, nightcrawlers, and creek chubs fished tight-line. The tail
water area below Wills Creek dam provides a great place for saugeye
fishing. Saugeyes concentrate just below the dam during high volume
water releases.


Western Basin

Walleye fishing continues to be excellent with many limits being
caught. Fishing has been best north of West Sister Island to the
Canadian border near Middle Sister Island, two to four miles north
of “B” can of the Camp Perry firing range, and along the Canadian
border west of North Bass Island. Drifters are using mayfly rigs or
worm harnesses with bottom bouncers, while trollers are using worm
harnesses with inline weights or bottom bouncers and jet or dipsy
divers with spoons. The best yellow perch fishing in the western
basin has been around Ballast Island and east of Kelleys

Central Basin

Walleye fishing in the central basin has been good. Fish have
been caught three miles offshore from Vermilion to Lorain, five
miles north of Cleveland in 42 to 48 feet of water, six miles north
of the Wildwood State Park in 60 to 64 feet of water, two to four
miles northeast of Fairport Harbor in 45 to 65 feet of water, and
two to four miles northwest of Geneva in 50 to 65 feet of water.
Fish have been caught on worm harnesses or bloody nose, watermelon,
killer bee, and copper back spoons trolled with dipsy or jet
divers. Fish are suspended and anglers are fishing down 20 to 40

Yellow perch fishing has been excellent less than one mile out
of Lorain, two miles north of Willowick in 38 feet of water, two
miles north of Bratenal in 32 to 35 feet, two miles northeast of
Ashtabula in 24 to 36 feet of water, two miles north of Conneaut in
36 to 42 feet of water. Fish have ranged from seven to 11 inches.
Perch spreaders with shiners fished near the bottom produce the
most fish. Shore anglers are catching yellow perch at Mentor
Headlands pier and Fairport Harbor pier. Anglers are using
spreaders with shiners. Smallmouth bass fishing has been excellent
from Fairport Harbor to Perry in 10 to 24 feet of water. Fish have
been caught on tube jigs, jigs tipped with minnows or leeches, or
by trolling crankbaits. White bass fishing has been good 1/2-mile
north of Eastlake CEI power plant. Anglers are using agitators with
white jigs. Shore anglers are catching white bass at the Eastlake
CEI pier using agitators with white/yellow twistertails and small

Lake Erie surface temperatures range from 69 to 70 degrees.


Monroe County – Flathead catfish are starting to hit on chicken
livers and cut bait. Some smaller white bass are biting on cut
bait, also.

Gallipolis Lock and Dam (Gallia County) – Access the dam and
tail waters off state Route 7 at Eureka. Anglers have been reeling
in catfish. Try casting cut bait (shad and skipjack) or livers into
current where there is cover.

Willow Island Dam (Washington County) – Some saugers have been
reeled in this week using two jigs cast into current.

Meigs County – Shoreline anglers are reeling in shovelhead and
channel catfish below the Bellville and Racine Dams using cut bait,
nightcrawlers and chicken livers.

Share on Social


Hand-Picked For You

Related Articles