Saturday, February 4th, 2023
Saturday, February 4th, 2023

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Walleyes turning on in Lake Erie; catfish biting as well

CENTRAL_REGION

Buckeye Lake (Fairfield, Licking, and Perry counties) – The warm
temperatures have increased water temperature to the mid 70s and
above. Use crankbaits, tubes and creature baits around Clouse Cove
and Cranberry Marsh for largemouth bass; also fish any riprap or
woody cover. Try using chicken livers on the north shore from
Seller’s Point to the north boat ramp when seeking hybrid striped
bass. For bluegills, fish the eastern side of the lake using small
worms and larval baits beneath a bobber. Crappie measuring seven to
12 inches can be taken using minnows suspended by a bobber from
shoreline areas that have submerged cover. This is central Ohio’s
top lake for flathead catfish. Use live chubs or small sunfish and
heavy sinkers fished along the lake bottom for best results. This
is also one of the region’s top lakes for carp; try prepared baits
and dough balls fished along the bottom.

Delaware Lake (Delaware County) – This 1,017-acre lake north of
Columbus consistently provides quality crappie fishing. As the
water temperature warms, fish will move to deeper water with cover;
try fishing drop-offs containing stumps or other wood. Crappies
must be 9 inches or longer to keep. Channel catfish can be caught
using cut baits and shrimp, especially in the upper part of the
lake. For largemouth bass, fish shoreline cover, riprap, and
secondary drop-offs with crankbaits, tubes, and creature baits.
Largemouth bass must be 12 inches or longer to keep.

Griggs Reservoir (Franklin County) – This 361-acre lake in
Columbus offers shore-fishing access on the east side of the lake.
Largemouth and smallmouth bass are hitting right now. Try plastic
tubes and creature baits fished along riprap and cover for the best
results. Crappies are still being found in shallow water around
woody cover. Use minnows or jigs suspended by a bobber fished right
in the cover. Carp are large and plentiful in this lake. Use
prepared baits and dough balls.

NORTHWEST_REGION

Bellevue Reservoir No. 5 (Huron County) – Bluegills are being
caught during the mornings and evenings by fishing wax worms under
a slip bobber. Try the east side.

Auglaize River (Defiance County) – Channel catfish have been
caught in good numbers during the daytime. Still-fishing with
goldfish at the base of the power dam is producing the best
results.

Maumee River (Defiance County) – Crappies are being taken during
the day time by fishing minnows under a slip bobber. Independence
State Park is a great spot. Also, catfish have been taken by still
fishing night crawlers on the bottom. Great fishing during the day
as well as at night.

Paulding Reservoir (Paulding County) – The water temperature is
80 degrees. Channel catfish are being caught reservoir wide during
the mornings and evenings by still-fishing night crawlers.
Bluegills are also being caught. Mornings and evenings are best.
Fishing wax worms under a bobber is working great. They are being
caught reservoir wide as well.

NORTHEAST REGION

Atwood Lake (Carroll and Tuscarawas counties) – The white bass
bite is on. Anglers are catching large numbers of white bass up to
16 inches. White Twister Tailed-jigs or jig and minnow combinations
have been most productive. Both shore and boat anglers have had
success jigging around riprap, with boaters also catch white bass
while trolling.

Berlin Lake (Stark, Mahoning, and Portage counties) – The summer
catfish bite is starting to warm up in this large, multi-species
lake. Catfish from 12 to 16 inches are being caught on night
crawlers around the Price Street and State Route 14 bridges.

Cuyahoga River (Summit County) – Anglers are catching smallmouth
bass while fishing the canal near the towpath trail in southern
Akron. Anglers should also try launching at Waterworks Park on
Munroe Falls Avenue in Cuyahoga Falls and floating downstream for
an hour or more. White bass and pike have also been caught in this
river.

North Reservoir, Portage Lakes (Summit County) – Boat anglers
are experiencing a bass fishing frenzy while tossing crankbaits
near shore. Crappie, perch and bluegill are being reported by
anglers while bass fishing. Several fish measuring upwards of 14
inches have been caught.

Tappan Lake (Harrison County) – White bass have been biting.
Early morning and late evening have been the most productive times,
with curly tailed jigs and spinners cast around riprap providing
fast action. Bridges have been particularly productive areas.
Bluegill fishing has been hot, as well, with anglers catching good
numbers on maggots fished under bobbers in shallow water.

SOUTHWEST_REGION

Great Miami and Twin Creek (Montgomery County) – Smallmouth bass
are hitting well on GMR and Twin Creek. Favorite baits are tube
jigs, crawfish imitations, jigs and minnows. The anglers doing the
best are wading or using small boats to gain access to spots that
are not often fished from shore. The bass lay along the edges of
the banks looking for a meal before they go to spawn. Anglers are
also catching saugeyes using the same techniques. The river has
been producing lots of 2- to 5-pound channel catfish from Dayton to
Franklin. Fishermen are using chicken liver and night crawlers
fished on the bottom. Channel catfish catches have been good since
the localized storms caused higher water levels in the river. Best
catches of channel catfish have been below the low head dams at
Monument Avenue, Tay’s Station, West Carrollton, and
Miamisburg.

Grand Lake St. Marys (Auglaize and Mercer counties) – Walleyes
are being caught by anglers trolling off of the West Bank. The best
lure choices are minnow imitations, crankbaits or jigging spoons.
Keep the bait about three to four feet deep. Channel catfish are
hitting on cut bait, night crawlers or shrimp. Fish the bait tight
line along the bottom. 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 hitting on wax
worms. Keep the bait under a bobber and about two foot deep near
any type of structure, including the rocky areas.

C. J. Brown Reservoir (Clark County) – Walleye fishing continues
to improve. Early morning boat anglers fishing jigs tipped with a
night crawler over the midlake humps and in the north end of the
lake are beginning to catch some nice walleyes. Remember there is a
15-inch minimum size limit and daily bag of six on walleyes.
Bluegills are being 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 wax worms or redworms for
bluegills, fished under a bobber. Anglers are still catching a few
white bass along the rocky shorelines. Try using small spinners,
jigs, or minnows.

Caesar Creek Lake (Warren County) – Muskie anglers continue to
be successful. Try casting large bucktail spinners, jerk baits, or
crankbaits around standing or fallen timber in coves or along main
lake shorelines. Try trolling crankbaits or in-line spinners tipped
with a night crawler, and casting a jig tipped with a night crawler
to catch saugeyes. Try fishing the island area between the buoyed
hazard area and the campground boat ramp. A few crappie are still
being caught by anglers fishing deep water woody structure with
minnows under a bobber and small hair or tube jigs in white or
chartreuse. Bluegills are being caught in the coves around woody
structure. Try using wax worms or redworms fished under a bobber.
Use spinner baits and crankbaits around shoreline cover for bass
early in the morning or late in the evening.

East Fork Lake (Clermont County) – Flood waters have receded and
the lake is about one foot above summer pool. Largemouth bass are
being caught in about seven to eight feet of water. Anglers are
having success with Texas rigged plastic worms and crankbaits. Most
are being caught in the coves along brushy cover. Crappie are also
being caught in about six to seven feet of water on minnows. They
are also in the coves along woody cover.

SOUTHEAST REGION

Turkey Creek Lake (Scioto County) – Anglers have had success
casting for black bass using rubber worms and spinners fished on
the bottom in the shallow waters on the north side of the lake.
Good catches of redear sunfish have been caught on night crawlers
fished in six feet of water off the point across from the
beach.

Muskingum River (Washington County) – June is a great month for
bluegill fishing – try casting into the tailwater areas for “gill”
catches that average seven inches, with anglers reporting good
numbers caught in the Marietta pool. Try using redworms and wax
worms fished under a bobber for best results. For saugers, try
fishing jigs tipped with minnows, and jigs with rubber bodies.
Crappie fishing is best around heavy cover along the river; try
casting small jigs tipped with minnows.

LAKE_ERIE_REGION

Western Basin

Walleye: The best fishing in the western basin has been
northwest of West Sister Island, around Niagara Reef, and also east
of Kelleys Island. Casters are using mayfly rigs or drifting bottom
bouncers with worm harnesses. Trollers are catching fish on spoons
and Dipsys or Jet Divers, worm harnesses with in-line weights, or
with crankbaits.

Yellow perch: The best perch reports have come from Marblehead,
Kelleys Island and Rattlesnake Island. Perch spreaders with shiners
fished near the bottom produce the most fish.

Central Basin

Walleye fishing has been excellent between Ruggles Reef and
Lorain in 28 to 36 feet of water, on Avon point, 45 to 55 feet
northwest off Edgewater Park in Cleveland, 36 to 50 feet northwest
off Fairport and 55 to 61 feet northwest off Geneva. Trollers are
using pink, purple, orange and green spoons off planer boards and
Jet Divers and also flatline trolling.

Yellow perch fishing has been excellent in 30-40 feet north off
Cleveland and 35-45 feet northeast off Wildwood State Park, 50 to
55 feet northwest off Fairport, 30 feet northeast off Ashtabula and
32 to 38 feet northeast off Conneaut. Shore anglers have been
catching fish off the Headlands Beach and Fairport piers on the
Grand River and in Cleveland off the East 55th and East 72nd Street
piers in Cleveland. Perch spreaders with shiners fished near the
bottom produce the most fish.

Smallmouth bass fishing has been very good in 10 to 20 feet
around harbor areas in Fairport Harbor, Geneva, Ashtabula and
Conneaut. Fish are being caught on soft-crawls, jigs tipped with
minnows, leeches, green, smoke and brown tube jigs, and by trolling
crankbaits.

As we move into summer, highlight species targeted by anglers
along the Rocky River are smallmouth bass, carp, panfish and
channel catfish. Smallmouth bass are typically found in the deeper,
rocky pools of the river during the day in summer, and often move
to the heads of such pools in the early morning and evening hours
to feed actively.

A dark olive or brown tube jig of about 4 inches length is one
of the best producers of bass in the river. “Smallies” also bite
well on live bait (minnows, crayfish, and leeches), lures (spinners
and minnow plugs), and flies (crayfish patterns, Clouser minnows,
dark brown or olive sculpin or muddler minnow patterns). There are
abundant small- to medium-sized bass in the river along with a
healthy number of trophy fish up to (and over) 20 inches in length.
Also, note that all smallmouth bass must be released immediately if
caught downstream of the Detroit Road bridge until June 23. Rock
bass are also present in the same river areas as smallmouth, and
can be caught using the same offerings listed above.

Channel catfish and large carp are present in some of these same
areas in the river, and fishing for them can be a laid back and
relaxing way to enjoy some time on the water. Good numbers of
channel catfish stocked in May also remain to be caught at Wallace
lake and the Ohio and Erie Canal fishing area. Catfishing is
usually best during lower light conditions using baits such as
night crawlers, minnows, chicken liver and processed dough baits. A
good number of larger catfish are moving into the river from Lake
Erie on their spawning run. Resident channel catfish are available
in the river all summer.

Some large carp (some exceeding 15 pounds) can be caught in the
northern river reaches throughout the month, as well. Carp can
often be caught throughout the day on such bait as canned corn,
carp dough baits, worms, or crayfish tails. A growing contingent of
fly anglers looking for a challenge are targeting carp with nymphs
and crayfish imitations, as well. The key to fishing for either
carp or catfish is fishing on (or very near) the river/lake
bottom.

In addition to the aforementioned species, freshwater drum
(sheepshead), white perch and bullhead catfish are also abundant in
the northern river reaches (north of Morley Ford) in early summer.
For the angling generalist, any of the species thus far can be
effectively targeted by fishing a fat night crawler worm right on
the river bottom with a sinker.

Summer means family fishing time for many folks, and panfish fit
the bill perfectly for a leisurely picnic and fishing outing.
Anglers seeking panfish have experienced decent fishing at most of
the ponds and lakes in the Cleveland Metropark District. Crappies,
bluegills, and other sunfish species can be taken with a number of
offerings, but a wax worm or redworm on a small hook (or tiny jig)
suspended under a stick float and fished around a weedbed or
shoreline brush is always a good choice. Wallace Lake, Shadow Lake,
and Beyers Pond are just a few of many places in the park to wet a
line for various panfish species.

Cleveland Metroparks, www.clemetparks.com

OHIO_RIVER_REGION

Racine Dam Area – Hybrid striped bass fishing has picked up with
fish in the 5- to 10-pound range being caught at the dam. Hybrids
are being taken with live bait, plastics, and crankbaits, both with
and without agitators. Saugers, smallmouth bass, and largemouth
bass were also being caught. Try Twister Tails, grubs, or minnows
anywhere along the walkway and further down.

walkway.

Share on Social

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Email

Hand-Picked For You

Related Articles