Iowa statewide fishing report for July 21

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources issues a weekly fishing
report on Thursdays in an effort to provide the latest information
heading into the weekend. The weekly fishing report is compiled
from information gathered from local bait shops, angler creel
surveys, and county and state parks staff. For current information,
contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at
the end of each district report.

NORTHWEST

Nelson Park Lake

Nelson Park has the invasive plant brittle naiad. Be sure to clean
boat and trailer before you leave lake to avoid spreading this
species to other water bodies. Fishing has been slow for all
species.

Yellow Smoke Park Lake

Yellow Smoke has the invasive plant brittle naiad. Be sure to clean
boat and trailer before you leave lake to avoid spreading this
species to other water bodies. Water clarity is excellent. Channel
Catfish – Fair: Channel catfish are being caught around the lake on
night crawlers. Bluegill – Fair: Anglers have been picking up
bluegill around the submerged trees in 8 to 10 feet of water. Use a
small piece of night crawler for bait.

Crawford Creek Impoundment

Crawford Creek has the invasive plant brittle naiad. Be sure to
clean boat and trailer before you leave lake to avoid spreading
this species to other water bodies.

Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)

Boaters use caution. The hydraulic dredge is in operation at Storm
Lake. Stay clear of dredge barge, booster pump barge, and pipeline.
Anglers are allowed three walleye per day, all fish between 17 and
22 inches must be released; only one of the three fish can be over
22 inches. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use the usual baits like stink
bait, shrimp, cut bait, and minnows. White Bass – Fair: Cast white
twisters or shad colored crankbaits. Look for white bass breaking
the surface pursuing baitfish and cast into the school. Walleye –
Slow: Boat anglers have been doing the best for walleye. Most
anglers are drifting or trolling bottom bouncers with a crawler
harness or a leech around the dredge cuts. The Mustad Slow Death
hooks have been very popular with anglers. Trolling small shad
colored crankbaits has been working well.

North Twin Lake

Water temperature is in the 80s. Channel catfish and yellow bass
fishing remains fair around the lake.

Black Hawk Lake

Anglers are allowed three walleye per day and all fish must be at
least 15 inches. Channel Catfish – Excellent: Fish for channel
catfish within 20 feet of shore. The catfish are in tight to shore
attempting to spawn in Black Hawk.

Browns Lake

The boat ramp is closed, but boaters may utilize the lake with
electric trolling motors (no outboards) for power. Also, those
wishing to kayak or canoe would be able to use Brown’s Lake. Any
boaters choosing to go onto Brown’s Lake will need to load their
boat without the use of the ramp. Campground is still open and
fishing from shore is allowed.

Snyder Bend Lake

Snyder Bend is closed to boat traffic.

Great Western Park Lake

Great Western Park has the invasive plant brittle naiad. Be sure to
clean boat and trailer before you leave lake to avoid spreading
this species to other water bodies.

Little Sioux River (Linn Grove to Correctionville)

River conditions are starting to improve. Some anglers are catching
catfish.

Aquatic vegetation has come in at many of the lakes in the area.
Boaters and anglers should inspect their boats, trailers, and live
wells to avoid spreading nuisance species to other water bodies.
For more information on lakes and rivers in this area contact Ben
Wallace or Don Herrig at the Black Hawk District Office in Lake
View at 712-657-2638.

Eldred Sherwood Lake

Try for panfish with crawlers fished under a bobber or small
plastic baits on a jig. Be aware that this lake contains brittle
naiad. Please clean, drain, and dry your boat and equipment before
going to another water body.

Upper Pine Lake

Largemouth bass can be caught using bass baits fishing around the
fallen trees. Channel catfish can be caught from shore using cut
bait or crawlers fished off the bottom.

Lake Smith

Try fishing for channel catfish using crawlers, chicken liver, or
stink bait fished off the bottom. Panfish can still be caught using
a piece of crawler on a small jig or hook fished under a
bobber.

Clear Lake

Fishing has slowed this past week due to the high temperatures.
Channel catfish are still being caught using crawlers and stink
bait while fishing from shore or on the rock piles from a boat. A
few walleyes were caught trolling the reefs with crankbaits or jig
fishing with crawlers or minnows on top of the reefs and rock
piles. Remember that Clear Lake contains zebra mussels. Please
clean, drain, and dry your boat and equipment before going to
another water body.

Lake Cornelia

Anglers have been catching bullheads and channel catfish from shore
using crawlers fished off the bottom.

Crystal Lake

Try fishing for largemouth bass using plastic tube baits, spinners,
or just a jig and crawler. Bluegill of a variety of sizes can be
caught on crawlers and minnows fishing from the jetties.

Due to the higher temperatures this past week fewer anglers have
been fishing. For more fishing information in north central Iowa
contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife station at
641-357-3517.

Lake Pahoja

Bluegill – Good: Anglers are catching bluegill on spawning beds in
shallow water with small jigs tipped with a wax worm or plastic
tail. Crappie – Good: Crappies can be caught drifting a small jig
or jig and minnow across structure in deeper water

Big Spirit Lake

Walleye fishing has continued to slow down; however, anglers are
still reporting limits. Yellow perch are continuing to pick up in
the past week. Northern Pike – Good: Anglers casting into the
bulrushes in Angler’s Bay are catching good numbers of northern
pike. Bluegill – Good: Try fishing along Jackson Point and Trickles
Slough as fish are on their spawning beds. Smallmouth Bass – Good:
Try casting live bait on Big Stoney and Cottonwood points. Some
fish are being caught in the bulrushes also. Anglers are also
catching a lot of smallmouth fishing with slip bobbers and a leech.
Largemouth Bass – Good: Many largemouth bass have been reported
while fishing for smallmouth. Yellow Perch – Fair: Yellow perch
fishing is just starting to pick up. Anglers have been catching
perch in vegetation in 8-12 feet of water on leeches and slip
bobbers. Walleye – Good: Walleye fishing has been good to excellent
in the past week. Try fishing early morning and late afternoon
along rock points and in vegetation. During the day fish are being
caught in 18-20 feet of water along the lake. Muskellunge – Fair:
Anglers are reporting a few muskies being caught and many
followers. A few northern pike have been caught while fishing for
muskies.

East Okoboji Lake

Channel Catfish – Good: Now is the time of year to be fishing along
the shoreline for channel catfish as they are protecting their
nests. Try fishing with cut bait or night crawlers along the
shoreline. White Bass – Good: Anglers fishing near the Spirit Lake
spillway are catching a few white bass. Fish are starting to feed
in schools so watch for them breaking the water and use a minnow or
imitation minnow to get them to bite. Walleye – Good: Anglers are
catching walleye along the west shoreline by Parks Marina in the
late afternoon.

Little Spirit Lake

Bullhead – Good: Anglers are reporting catches of large bullhead
near the outlet of Little Spirit Lake. Freshwater Drum – Good: Drum
have been caught while fishing for bullhead.

West Okoboji Lake

Northern Pike – Good: Try fishing weed lines in the bays with a
spinner bait. Bluegill – Good: Try fishing along docks in shallow
bays with a small jig and piece of worm or wax worm. Walleye –
Good: Dock fisherman and anglers fishing rocky points have had
success Muskellunge – Fair: Anglers seeking muskies are reporting
some luck in the past week

Five Island Lake

Channel Catfish – Good: Recent hoop net surveys on Five Island Lake
have shown excellent numbers of channel catfish. Try fishing on the
bottom in the north basin from the rock point to the dredge for the
best luck. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are being caught in the same
areas as crappies. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try fishing along rock
piles and tree falls along the shorelines.

Lost Island Lake

Walleye – Fair: Anglers are still reporting fish near the rock
point and on the rock pile.

Little Sioux River (state line to Linn Grove)

With last week’s rainfalls, the river has gone up dramatically and
is not ideal for fishing.

Fishing has slowed slightly over the past week due to high water
and hot weather. There is a 600 foot no wake zone extending from
shore where boats are restricted to operating at no more than 5
mph. For more information, contact the Spirit Lake Hatchery at
712-336-1840.

NORTHEAST

Volga Lake

Construction began on July 11 on the road to the lake and new
campground. The lake and campground will be inaccessible during
construction.

Lake Hendricks

Water temperature was around 88 degrees. A new fishing jetty is
being constructed on the southeast side of the lake. Channel
Catfish – Slow: Try angling during the early morning and late
evening. Bluegill – Slow: Try using a worm fished under a
bobber.

Lake Meyer

Bluegill – Fair: Nice sized bluegills are being caught off the weed
line in about 7 to 9 feet of water. Try using a small piece of worm
fished under a bobber or a small jig.

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)

Water is clearing up and is very fishable. Smallmouth Bass – Slow:
Try using a crawfish plastic jig. Walleye – Slow: A jig tipped with
a worm is still the best bet floated through deeper holes.

Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)

Water has cleared some since last week and is very fishable.
Channel Catfish – Good: The best time to catch catfish is early am
or late pm. Anglers are having the best luck using night crawlers.
Walleye – Slow: A few small walleye were being caught last
week.

Cedar River (above Nashua)

Water levels are coming back down and clarity is getting better.
Angling activity has been slow but is expected to pick up this
week. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try chicken liver or dead chubs, or,
with this hot weather, a good stink bait. Smallmouth Bass – Slow:
With water levels dropping, smallies will start biting again. Try a
crawdad imitation lure. Crappie – Slow: With more stable water
levels, the crappies will be more aggressive. Try live minnows or
similar imitation lure.

Decorah District Streams

July is a great month for fishing dry terrestrial patterns. Trout
have recently been taken on #12 Hoppers. A Hopper pattern fished in
slow water or the tails of pools has been very effective whether
trout are rising or not, especially near weedy banks or in the open
slots between watercress beds. Cricket, beetle, ant and bee
patterns can be fished effectively in the same fashion. For spin
fishing, using jigs or plastics that imitate crawfish. For stocking
information, call 563-927-5736.

Area rivers and streams are looking great this week. Lakes are in
good condition and weeds are starting to die back. Trout streams
are in excellent condition. For more information, call the Decorah
Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.

Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)

Largemouth bass are biting aggressively on Casey Lake. There is an
18-inch minimum size limit on largemouth bass on this lake. Please
check boat trailers for any presence of Brittle naiad when leaving
the boat ramp. Bluegill – Fair: Try fishing small jigs under a
bobber or small worm on a hook fished near weed edges or sunken
habitat. Largemouth Bass – Excellent: Crankbaits and rubber worms
have been working excellent for largemouth bass.

Big Woods Lake

Largemouth bass are biting well around woody structures or sunken
habitat mostly along the north shoreline. Largemouth Bass – Good:
Crankbaits and rubber worms have been working excellent for
largemouth bass.

Brinker Lake

There have been reports of crappie being taken on Brinker Lake.
Crappie – Fair: Try a crappie minnow under a slip bobber fished
around sunken trees in 10 to 12 feet of water.

George Wyth Lake

Anglers have been catching crappie fishing off of the floating dock
during the early to late morning hours. Crappie – Fair: Try
floating a crappie minnow under a bobber or casting colored tube
jigs.

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)

River levels are currently falling. In Black Hawk and Bremer
counties channel catfish angling remains good. Fishing should
improve towards the weekend without additional rainfall. Channel
Catfish – Good: Most anything – cut baits, nightcrawlers, chicken
livers – fished on the bottom in most areas of the river has been
productive.

Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock)

Walleye and smallmouth bass are being caught. Smallmouth Bass –
Fair: Jigs tipped with a twister and nightcrawler slowly retrieved
off of the bottom or casting crankbaits can be productive. Walleye
– Fair: Jig and twister tipped with a crawler or casting crankbaits
work very well.

Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)

The river is in good condition in Buchanan County. Walleye and
smallmouth bass fishing has been fair. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Jig
tipped with a nightcrawler or crankbaits are working well for
smallmouth bass. Walleye – Fair: Try a jig tipped with half a
nightcrawler or casting crankbaits.

Maquoketa River (above Monticello)

The Maquoketa River is looking excellent. Smallmouth bass and
walleye fishing should be good. Channel catfish are also being
caught. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try nightcrawlers, dead cut baits
or stink baits fished on the bottom of the river. Smallmouth Bass –
Good: Crankbaits or live baits are working well on smallmouth bass.
Walleye – Fair: Crankbaits or jig and crawler fished off of current
breaks can be productive.

Manchester District Streams

Trout streams remain in excellent condition. Call the Manchester
District Office for any additional information at
563-927-3276.

Interior rivers are in fair to good condition with slight chances
of rain over the weekend. Channel catfish have been biting well on
most of the interior rivers with occasional walleye and smallmouth
bass being caught. Anglers are still catching some crappie and
bluegill on area Black Hawk and Bremer County lakes. Trout streams
in the Manchester District are in good condition. For any
additional information contact the Manchester District Office at
563-927-3276.

MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 9

River level at Lansing is 10.2 feet and expected to rise slowly to
10.7 feet over next week. Army road ramp at New Albin is now open.
Village Creek and Heytman’s ramps remain open as well. Northern
Pike – Fair: Nice pike reported recently. As water temperature
warms, look for pike near the mouths of cold water springs or
creeks. Channel Catfish – Good: Channel cat spawning is ending and
hungry fish should begin to bite on stink bait soon. Bluegill –
Good: Bluegills still biting well in backwaters. Smallmouth Bass –
Fair: Fish along exposed rock shorelines with current. Small
spinners and jigs are working well for concentrated fish.
Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth fishing remains good along
vegetation as water clarity begins to improve. Yellow Perch – Fair:
Really good numbers of yellow perch are in the river this year and
usually being caught by those fishing for drum and bluegills.
Walleye – Good: Walleye wing dam fishing picking up as river level
stabilizes. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum are biting well using
an egg sinker and worms near shoreline areas.

Mississippi River Pool 10

River level at Lynxville is 19 feet and expected rise slowly to
19.7 feet over the next week. All boat ramps on Pool 10 are now
open. Northern Pike – Fair: Some really nice pike reported lately.
As water temperature warms, look for pike near the mouths of cold
water springs or creeks. Channel Catfish – Good: A lot of catfish
being caught fishing crawlers in the Harpers Ferry area above and
below the dam. This is the time of year when stink bait becomes
very effective. Bluegill – Good: Good catches of bluegill reported
near Harpers Ferry, Bussey Lake bite has dropped off a bit but good
fish still being caught. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Fish along exposed
rock shoreline with current. Work the whole shoreline to look for
pockets of active fish. Largemouth Bass – Good: Some decent catches
of largemouth reported in backwaters of Pool 10 but many are
smaller. Remember largemouth must be 14 inches to keep. Yellow
Perch – Good: Some nice perch have been caught in the Harpers Ferry
area. They are a pleasant surprise as they often are caught by
bluegill or drum anglers. Walleye – Fair: A few walleyes being
caught near wing dams and bottoms of running sloughs. Some eyes are
also coming out of Harpers Slough by folks using worm rigs.
Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum are being taken all over the
river, with most anglers using an egg sinker and nightcrawlers for
bait.

Mississippi River Pool 11

River level at Guttenberg is 9.8 feet and is expected to rise
slowly to 10.3 feet over the week. All ramps are now open for
launching. Northern Pike – Fair: Good catches of pike reported in
the ponds above dead slough. Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel cat
spawning is ending and hungry fish should be hitting on stink bait
soon. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill fishing really starting to pick up
in backwaters. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Fish exposed rock shoreline
with current. As the river level falls, more rock is being exposed
and fishing for smallies is expected to improve. Largemouth Bass –
Good: Bass are hitting pretty well in the upper part of the pool
along shorelines. They tend to be on the small side and remember
they need to be 14 inches to keep. Walleye – Fair: Walleyes are
being caught near wing dams and the bottoms of running sloughs.
They tend to be just under the legal size of 15 inches. Wing dams
are just starting to become fishable as water recedes. Freshwater
Drum – Excellent: Drum are biting well on worm fished on the
bottom. Drum are one of the fish that continue to bite well in
rising and muddy waters.

River levels on the Upper Mississippi have stabilized and should
begin to rise slowly over the next week. Water temperature is 86
degrees. Fishing reports have been slow as the hot weather has kept
many anglers away. With river levels stabilizing and the water
warming up fish should be feeding consistently. A slight rise in
water level often brings more active fish towards shorelines.

Mississippi River Pool 12

River stage at Dubuque is 10.84 feet and stable. Water clarity is
fair and temperature is in the mid 80s. Be aware that the
Mississippi River is infested with zebra mussels, Eurasian
watermilfoil, curly-leaf pondweed, and brittle naiad. Please clean,
drain, and dry your boat and equipment before transporting to
another water body. Channel Catfish – Fair: Cats are biting on cut
bait around snags in the side channels. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill
are biting on small jigs and crawlers in the backwaters in shallow
water and along rip rap in the side channels. Largemouth Bass –
Fair: Bass are being caught in the backwaters and marinas around
structure on soft plastics and crankbaits. Crappie – Fair: Anglers
are catching a few crappie on minnows or jigs in the backwaters and
side channels around wood. Walleye – Fair: Walleye are being caught
on wing dams, closing dams, and at Steamboat on three-way rigs and
crankbaits. Fishing should continue to improve as water levels
continue to drop. Freshwater Drum – Fair: Drum are biting on
crawlers fished on the bottom around wing dams and in side channels
in areas of moderate current.

Mississippi River Pool 13

River stage at Bellevue is 9.64 feet and stable. Water clarity is
fair and temperature is in the mid 80s. With high temperatures,
dissolved oxygen levels in many of the backwaters has dropped
significantly; look for bass and panfish to be in side channels
near the entrance to backwaters or areas of backwaters with flowing
water. Be aware that the Mississippi River is infested with zebra
mussels, Eurasian watermilfoil, curly-leaf pondweed, and brittle
naiad. Please clean, drain, and dry your boat and equipment before
transporting to another water body. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfish
biting on cut baits, crawlers, and stink bait in the side channels
around structure. Bluegill – Fair: Anglers are catching bluegill in
the backwaters and side channels around snags on crawlers or small
jigs. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are being caught in side
channels around structure. Crappie – Fair: Anglers are catching a
few crappie in side channels around snags on minnows and small
jigs. Walleye – Fair: Walleye are being caught on wing dams with
slower current on three-way rigs, crankbaits, and jigs. Freshwater
Drum – Fair: Drum are biting good on crawlers fished on the
bottom.

Mississippi River Pool 14

River stage at Camanche is 11.93 feet and stable. Water clarity is
fair. Water temperature is in the mid to high 80s. Be aware that
the Mississippi River is infested with zebra mussels, Eurasian
watermilfoil, curly-leaf pondweed, and brittle naiad. Please clean,
drain, and dry your boat and equipment before transporting to
another water body. Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel cats are biting
on stink bait in the side channels wing dams around structure.
Bluegill – Fair: The bluegill bite has picked up as the water
levels have dropped. Crappie – Fair: The crappie bite has picked up
as water levels have dropped. Walleye – Fair: Walleye are being
caught on wing dams and flats on jigs and leeches or crankbaits.
Freshwater Drum – Fair: Drum are biting on crawlers fished on the
bottom in areas with moderate current.

For fishing information in Pool 12-15 of the Mississippi River
contact the Bellevue Fish Management and Research Station at
563-872-4976

Mississippi River Pool 16

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 15 is 8.87 feet. Channel Catfish –
Good: Channel catfish are being caught on nightcrawlers and stink
bait. Try fishing above snag piles along the main channel or side
sloughs. White Bass – No Report: Bluegill – No Report: Crappie – No
Report: Walleye – No Report:

Mississippi River Pool 17

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 16 is 7.28 feet. Channel Catfish –
Good: Channel catfish are being caught on nightcrawlers and stink
bait. Trying fishing above snags along the main channel or in side
sloughs. Some fish are being caught along GPC. White Bass – No
Report: Bluegill – Slow: Some bluegills are being caught in the
backwaters fishing worms under a bobber. Crappie – Fair: Some
crappies are being caught in the backwaters fishing small minnows
under a bobber or on tube jigs. Look for crappies in the backwaters
and sloughs around brush piles. The bite has been best early in the
morning or right before dark due to the hot weather. Walleye – No
Report:

Mississippi River Pool 18

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 17 is 8.97 feet. The Toolesboro
ramp is now open. Channel Catfish – Good: Channel catfish are being
caught on stink baits and chicken livers. Try fishing above snag
piles along the main channel or in the side sloughs. Bluegill – No
Report: Crappie – No Report: Walleye – No Report:

Mississippi River Pool 19

Tail water stage at Lock and Dam 18 is 5.56 feet. Channel Catfish –
Good: Channel catfish are being caught on nightcrawlers, stink
baits, and chicken livers. Try fishing above snag piles along the
main channel or in the sloughs. Bluegill – No Report: Largemouth
Bass – Fair: Some largemouth bass are being caught on crankbaits
fished around snags and brush piles. Crappie – Fair: Some crappies
are being caught in the backwaters on jigs and minnows. Walleye –
No Report:

Pools 16-19: River level has been falling slightly the last few
days. Main channel water temperature is around 86 degrees. Fishing
has been slow due to the hot weather. Remember to clean, drain, and
dry your boat before going to another water body. For more fishing
information on Pools 16-19 contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at
563-263-5062.

SOUTHEAST

Lake Odessa

The Toolesboro road opened last Saturday. All the ramps are now
open and cleared off. The water level will continue to fall as
there is still some water up in the trees. Northern Pike – Fair:
Anglers are picking up a few northerns. I normally see them along
the trees in the upper end of sand run and along the lower end of
the main lake. Bluegill – Fair: With a little work and knowledge of
the lake anglers are catching some big bluegills. Work the deeper
water of the sand run and Yankee chute areas. Crappie – Fair: There
are some slab crappies being caught along the trees dropped into
deeper water.

Lake Belva Deer

The water temperature is up to 81 degrees. The thermocline is at 6
to 8 feet deep. Channel Catfish – Good: Catfishing has been good
during the evening hours. Bluegill – Fair: The bluegills have for
the most part moved out to deeper water. Look for them to be around
the trees in the old creek channel.

Pollmiller Park Lake

Channel Catfish – Good: 1 to 3 pound fish are common. Fish during
the cooler parts of the day along the face of the dam. Bluegill –
Fair: Light tackle and small baits, such as wax worms, are a must.
Still, good numbers of fish up to 9 inches are being caught.
Largemouth Bass – Fair: The evenings are producing the best
fishing. During the heat of the day look for the fish to be around
the deep structure.

Skunk River (Coppock to Mississippi River)

The river continues to drop. Water temperature during the day is
around 86 degrees. Channel Catfish – Good: Catfishing has been good
as the river level has stabilized. Try a few freshly caught grass
frogs as bait. Flathead Catfish – Good: Anglers had a lot of bank
poles out over the Fourth of July weekend and caught some nice
fish.

Big Hollow Lake

Channel Catfish – Slow: Anglers are picking up a few catfish while
fishing for bluegills around the jetties. Bluegill – Slow: The rock
along the jetties are still producing bluegills.

For more information on the above lakes call the Lake Darling
fisheries office at 319-694-2430

Lake Macbride

The 10 hp maximum motor restriction is in effect. The invasive
plant brittle naiad is found here, so make sure to inspect and
clean your boat/trailer when leaving the lake. Channel Catfish –
Fair: Some fish are still around shallow rock, while others have
moved offshore. Try sunfish or crawlers for best results.
Largemouth Bass – Good: Try a variety of lures around shallow rock
or wood. Some fish have been caught on deeper rock/points using
crankbaits. Early and late in the day are best.

Pleasant Creek Lake

Remember, there is an 18-inch minimum on largemouth bass here. The
invasive plant brittle naiad is here, so make sure to inspect and
clean your boat/trailer when leaving the lake. Channel Catfish –
Slow: Try fishing along the dam or other rocky areas with stink
bait, liver, or crawlers. White Bass – Slow: Try jigs, spinners,
small spoons, or small crankbaits. Many fish have been small, but
nice sized fish are available. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Try
crankbaits, soft plastics, or crawlers. Walleye – Slow: Most fish
have been small but they are being caught on live bait rigs and
crankbaits. Target depths around 15 feet.

Diamond Lake

Remember, no minnows are allowed here. Channel Catfish – Fair:
Anglers using stink bait have been catching catfish, especially
early and late in the day.

Otter Creek Lake

Otter Creek Park and Lake are closed due to storm damage at this
time.

Coralville Reservoir

The current lake elevation on July 21 is at normal summer pool of
683.3 feet. Channel Catfish – Fair: A few fish are still being
caught along the rocks on live bait. Some fish are also being
caught a bit deeper on cut bait. White Bass – Slow: A few white
bass are being caught on jigs and small crankbaits.

Maquoketa (Hopkinton to Canton)

Channel Catfish – Good: Use chicken liver or stink bait for best
results. Night fishing has been the most productive.

For more information, contact the Lake Macbride Fisheries Station
at 319-624-3615.

Red Haw Lake

Channel Catfish – Fair: Use dead chubs fished around the rock
jetties. Bluegill – Good: Use small jigs fished along shoreline
structure. Try adding a chunk of nightcrawler. Largemouth Bass –
Good: Rubber worms and spinner baits are usually good this time of
year. Try areas around the jetties and along the shoreline.

Hawthorn Lake (aka Barnes City Lake)

The lake was drained for a lake renovation last year but work is
now complete. New fish habitat areas have been built along with
some new jetties. The gate has been closed and the lake is now
full.

Albia (lower)

Bluegill – Fair: Use small jigs tipped with a chunk of
nightcrawler. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try plastic worms fished
along the shoreline.

Lake Miami

Channel Catfish – Fair: Anglers have been having some success in
the evenings using cut bait or dead chubs. Try areas along the east
shoreline.

Lake Sugema

Bluegill – Fair: Use small jigs around shoreline structure. Some
sorting will be necessary for larger fish. Add a chunk of
nightcrawler to your jig. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use a jig n’ pig
combo or try spinner baits. Fish areas with submerged structure and
along the shoreline. Try top water baits fished in the early
morning hours.

Rathbun Reservoir

The lake level is at 912.35 feet with 904.0 feet normal pool. Water
temperature has been in the upper 70s. Don’t forget Lake Rathbun
contains zebra mussels so make sure to clean, drain, and dry boats
before transporting to another water body. Spray boats and trailers
with high pressure water above 104 degrees or let them dry for at
least 10 days, with 5 days in sun. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use dead
chubs or chicken liver around areas with the wind blowing into
them. Crappie – Fair: Use small jigs or minnows. Areas along the
shore with overhanging trees or vegetation are good places to
start. Small chrome colored crankbaits can also work this time of
year. Walleye – Fair: Try using nightcrawler rigs and bottom
bouncers. With the higher lake levels the walleye are spread out so
try new areas. Try fishing baits that mimic small shad like chrome
colored crankbaits or blade baits. Tagged walleyes should be
reported at 641-647-2406.

For further fishing reports in south central Iowa call the Rathbun
fish hatchery at 641-647-2406

SOUTHWEST

Beaver Lake

Bluegill – Good: Large bluegill are being caught fishing crawlers
near any of the flooded trees.

Big Creek Lake

White Bass – Good: White bass are providing some action, especially
late in the afternoon and evenings. Mid lake has been best, look
for them on the windblown side. They can often be seen breaking the
surface. Cast jigs or shallow running crankbaits. Bluegill – Good:
Bluegill are being caught drifting pieces of nightcrawler over the
roadbeds and brush piles that are in 15 feet of water or less.
Crappie – Fair: Anglers drifting small jigs mid lake out from the
beach and marina area are picking up a few crappie. Walleye – Fair:
Walleyes are being caught on the upper third of the lake by
drifting or jigging nightcrawlers, or casting and trolling
crankbaits. Many fish being caught are sublegal, but fish over 15
inches are coming in. Check legal size fish for yellow tags near
the tail. If one is caught follow the instructions on the signs at
the boat ramps.

Hickory Grove Lake

Bluegill – Excellent: Bluegill fishing has been excellent. They are
being caught drifting small pieces of crawler or still fishing over
the pallet piles near the island and off the south shoreline across
from the island. The bluegill are good size with some going over 9
inches. Crappie – Fair: Crappie are being caught drifting
throughout the lake. Use small tube jigs, jigs with small spinners,
or live minnows.

Lake Ahquabi

Bluegill – Good: Decent bluegill and large redear sunfish are being
caught with crawlers fished in any open pockets of
vegetation.

Red Rock Reservoir

White Bass – Fair: The white bass bite has been off over the past
week. However, the recent hot weather should increase white bass
activity. Trolling lipless crankbaits to find fish is the preferred
method. Try multiple colors to find their preference. Good starting
colors are chrome or a blue/chrome combo. Teeter Creek and west of
the mile long bridge are usually good areas. Crappie – Fair: Large
crappie are being caught on the very upper reaches of the reservoir
in flooded timber. The habitat is endless. Anglers that keep
moving, hitting as much flooded debris and timber as possible
aren’t catching limits, but do end up with a decent number of big
crappies.

Ada Hayden Heritage Park Lake

Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Good: Wipers are chasing shad and can
be seen breaking the surface. Anglers are having fun casting into
this action. The wipers are currently around 17 inches and it is
recommended to turn most fish back. This will allow for some
exciting fishing for large wipers in the near future.

Des Moines River (Stratford to Saylorville Lake)

Channel Catfish – Excellent: Channel catfish are being caught in
good numbers on cut bait and stink bait. Stink bait is currently
out fishing cut bait. Flathead Catfish – Fair: Anglers bank poling
for flatheads are doing fair. Post spawn and dropping water levels
is creating a little lull, but it should pick up again late July
into August. White Bass – Good: Anglers continue to catch good
numbers of white bass and an occasional wiper below the Saylorville
Reservoir. Walleye – Good: Anglers trolling crankbaits that dive 6
to 12 feet in the river below Saylorville are catching some nice
walleye. This method is also catching white bass, wipers, and
smallmouth bass.

Des Moines River (Saylorville to Red Rock)

Channel Catfish – Good: Good numbers of 4 to 8 pound catfish are
being caught on cut bait. White Bass – Fair: The white bass bite is
fair below the Red Rock spillway casting jigs or drifting minnows
under a bobber.

Fishing remains similar to last week, with a little more heat.
Bluegill and crappie are in summer patterns. Crappie are being
caught suspended by drifting in deeper water. Bluegill are feeding
heavily and are being caught fishing near brush piles, pallets, and
the edges of vegetation in lakes that have it. Don’t fish too deep
as most lakes now have a thermocline between 6 and 10 feet. For
information on central Iowa lakes and rivers contact Ben Dodd or
Andy Otting at 515-432-2823.

Greenfield Lake

Greenfield has one concrete boat ramp. Water clarity is good.
Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel catfish are being caught around
jetties using shrimp. Fish average two pounds. Bluegill – Fair: 7
to 8-inch bluegill can be caught drifting small jigs. Largemouth
Bass – Good: Many 12 to 15-inch largemouth are being caught casting
around jetties and weed edges. Crappie – Slow: A few crappies are
being caught in the evenings along the dam using minnows.

Nodaway Lake

Nodaway has one small boat ramp. Water temperature is in the low
80s and the lake has a slight algae bloom. Channel Catfish – Good:
Catfish are being caught along the north shoreline and the dam with
dip bait. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill are being caught around brush
piles with nightcrawlers. Crappie – Slow: Crappies can be caught
trolling jigs around brush piles in 10 to 12 feet of water. Fish
average 9 inches with a few 11-inch fish being caught. Evenings
seem to be best.

Orient Lake

Orient Lake has one concrete boat ramp. Water temperatures remain
in the low 80s. Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfish are close to rocky
shorelines and being caught on shrimp. Fish average 14 to 18
inches.

Lake Anita

Lake Anita has two concrete ramps and good water quality. Water
temperature has reached 80 degrees. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills up
to 9 inches are being caught drifting and around brush piles.
Largemouth Bass – Fair: Largemouth bass are being caught along the
road beds and in brush piles. Bass are all sizes up to 20
inches.

Willow Lake

Willow has one concrete boat ramp and excellent water clarity.
Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel catfish can be caught along the
campground shoreline and around jetties using dip bait. Bluegill –
Fair: The best bluegill bite is early in the morning using
nightcrawlers under a bobber. Fish average 8 inches. Largemouth
Bass – Good: Largemouth are being caught using Power Bait worms
around sunken trees. Most fish are 12 to 14 inches.

Viking Lake

Viking Lake continues to have good water clarity after recent heavy
rains. The lake has three concrete boat ramps. Channel Catfish –
Fair: Catfishing has been fair in the evenings around the jetties
using liver. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers are catching
largemouth bass in the sunken cedar trees using plastic baits.
Casting spinner baits along weed edges has also produced fish up to
20 inches.

Cold Springs District Farm Ponds

There are numerous farm ponds in southern Iowa that can provide a
quality fishing trip. Remember to always get permission to fish
private farm ponds. Aquatic vegetation is starting to come on.
Small boats or bass buggies will aid in fishing small ponds this
time of year. Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel catfish can be caught
using a variety of prepared baits in the summer. Fish in 3 to 6
feet of water. Bluegill – Fair: Fish for bluegills around deeper
structure and outside edges of vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Good:
Largemouth bass are aggressive now and can be caught casting around
structure and along the shoreline. Early morning and late evenings
are the best times to target largemouth.

Water temperatures are staying in the low 80s on most lakes.
Bluegills and crappies remain deep with the warm water temps.
Catfish can still be caught close to shore in the rocks. For more
information on fishing call the district office in Lewis at
712-769-2587.

Lake Icaria

The water level is near normal. Water clarity is near 24 inches at
the dam. Channel Catfish – Good: A lot of channel catfish are being
caught from areas less than 8 feet deep on liver. Small jigs and
crawlers are working over the mounds. Bluegill – Fair: Several
bluegills can be caught from the mounds using crawlers.

Lake of Three Fires

The water level is near normal and the clarity is good. Channel
Catfish – Fair: The channel catfish are biting on liver.

Green Valley Lake

The lake is being lowered to allow the sediment removal project to
continue. The lake is accessible and the main concrete ramp is
easily usable. The fish are growing well. Channel Catfish – Good:
Several mid-sized channel catfish are being caught on liver from
the shoreline areas around the camp ground and along the dam.

Three Mile Lake

The water level is normal. Crappie – Fair: A few scattered crappies
are coming from the timber and coves.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake

The water level is normal. Bullhead – Good: Several giant bullheads
can be caught using crawlers or liver from most areas of the lake.
Bluegill – Fair: Several big bluegills are biting on crawlers
fished over the mounds and steep drop-offs. Walleye – Fair: A few
walleye are biting on crawlers trolled over the mounds and the old
roadway in 8 to 12 feet of water.

Water temperatures above normal. Water levels are normal. Most
lakes have established thermo-clines ranging from 15 feet to as
shallow as 5 feet. Water clarity is normal for mid-summer.

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