• The daily bag limit for walleye in Ohio waters of Lake Erie is 6 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 2 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 5 fish per angler. The minimum size limit for black bass is 14 inches.
Where: Recent weather conditions have limited Lake Erie fishing opportunities. If conditions improve, the best walleye fishing will be nearshore around the islands, from Cedar Point to Lorain, and around Cleveland harbor.
How: Anglers trolling are using deep diving crankbaits in open water and shallow diving crankbaits nearshore at night. Anglers fishing from shore and piers are casting shallow diving crankbaits.
The Rocky River is currently ice free and flowing strongly with a good stain. The river flow does appear to be on the verge of cresting and the snow has all melted, so additional rain will be the factor that determines what conditions will be in the coming days. Anglers should keep an eye on the flow gauge, with a dropping flow in the coming days indicating progressively better steelhead fishing prospects. The Chagrin River is more elevated than the Rocky and will require at least a few days until it could offer decent fishing conditions.
As we move into late fall, highlight species targeted by anglers in Cleveland Metroparks include steelhead trout, walleye, and yellow perch. Local streams are icy following the early winter blast, but it looks like a reprieve of warmer temperatures is expected to arrive. The river could go from icy to flowing strong and muddy with a rapid warm-up and rain, though. The bite at E.55th and E.72nd breakwalls has been good for steelhead and night walleye.
The good news is that the ice should disappear into the weekend with the warm-up, although coupled with rain that could quickly muddy the waters. Despite the cold recently, a number of anglers experienced good fishing. Leaves have decreased in the rivers, as well. As has been the case in recent weeks, fresher steelhead were being taken in the northern river reaches, such as around the marina and river mouth, although this area has had the most ice. Pods of steelhead are present throughout the system, primarily in deeper holes given the current conditions. There is a healthy mix of skippers (smaller 15-18-inch steelhead) and adult steelhead in the river at this time, and a few stray brown trout (from
Pennsylvania and New York programs) are turning up on a weekly basis. Small eggs sacks, live minnows, small jigs tipped with maggots, white tube jigs, and various fly patterns (small eggs, streamers, and nymphs) have all accounted for a share of the steelhead recently.
The shoreline fishing at E.55th and E.72nd accesses has been good. Anglers have been catching steelhead and walleye, but there are always other species to be had at these spots. Small jigs tipped with emerald shiner minnows and a few maggots 2-4 feet under a bobber account for many of the steelhead caught there this time of year, although the surprise hot bait on a recent afternoon was a whole nightcrawler dangled a few feet under a bobber. The night walleye bite casting from shore at E.72nd has been very good, with Husky Jerks, Rattlin' Rogues/Perfect Tens, and rattle type shad crankbaits being among the top producers. Similar opportunities are also present off the rocks at Edgewater and Wildwood parks. Wise anglers bring a long handed net when fishing these sites, and be very careful on those slippery shoreline rocks.
In early October, 600 pounds of farm raised channel catfish and 1,000 pounds of rainbow trout were stocked at the Ohio and Erie Canal fishing area and a fair share of these fish remain to be caught. The trout limit at this site is 5 fish per angler per day. The first round of winter trout stocking in Cleveland Metroparks lakes and ponds is currently scheduled for mid-December.
As the lake permits, boating anglers are still chasing night walleye. Walleye have been found in 10-30 feet of water off Cleveland, especially along the city breakwall after dark. Boaters are doing best most nights from 6-11 p.m. trolling Husky Jerk and Perfect Ten stickbaits around E.72nd.