Lake Erie Region Fishing Report – October 23rd, 2015
• The 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.
• For black bass (largemouth and smallmouth bass), the daily bag limit is five fish per angler with a 14-inch minimum size limit.
Where: There have been very few reports of walleye fishing in the western basin, and most anglers are targeting yellow perch.
How: Walleyes have been caught by trolling with crankbaits or worm harnesses, according to the Division of Wildlife.
Where: Perch fishing has been good off Wards Canal, west of Rattlesnake Island, north of North Bass Island, and northeast of Kelleys Island.
How: Perch spreaders or crappie rigs with shiners fished near the bottom produce the most fish.
Smallmouth and largemouth bass
Where: Smallmouth bass continue to be caught along the shorelines of the Bass Islands. Largemouth bass have been caught along the main lake shoreline around Catawba and Marblehead, and in harbors in the same area.
How: Bass have been caught on tube jigs, crankbaits, and drop-shot rigs.
Where: A few good walleye reports have come from the sandbar between Vermilion and Lorain.
How: Anglers are trolling planer boards with worm harnesses and crankbaits.
Where: Fish are being caught two miles north of Huron, two miles north of Vermilion, and near the south end of the sandbar between Vermilion and Lorain. Good fishing was reported northwest of Edgewater Park in 37 to 38 feet of water and north of Gordon Park in 37 to 40 feet of water. Very good fishing was reported northeast of Ashtabula in 75 feet of water and northeast of Conneaut in 69 feet of water. Anglers fishing from shore are catching fish off the long pier in the Grand River.
How: Perch spreaders with shiners and minnows fished near the bottom produce the most fish.
Where: Fishing has been very good in 15 to 18 feet of water around harbor areas in Fairport Harbor, Cleveland, Ashtabula, and Conneaut.
How: Anglers are using crayfish, jigs, and crankbaits.
Where: Anglers are trolling and casting in harbors, breakwalls, and nearshore areas at Conneaut, Ashtabula, Geneva, Fairport Harbor, Eastlake, and Rocky River.
How: Anglers are using spoons, jigs, and maggots and spinners.
As we begin our approach to fall, highlight species targeted by anglers along the Rocky River and other area streams include steelhead trout and smallmouth bass. The Rocky River water level is currently low and clear and we need rain, although it does not look like much coming in the forecast, says Cleveland Metropark fisheries biologist Mike Durkalec. Steelhead anglers are focusing on northernmost river reaches near Lake Erie and the lakefront.
There have been a few reports of steelhead from the northern reaches of the Rocky and Chagrin rivers, Lake Erie shoreline (at Edgewater, E.55th, and Wildwood parks), and Euclid Creek. Casting a spoon (i.e., Little Cleo or KO Wobbler) or spinner (i.e., Vibrax or Rooster Tail) near any river mouth or the lakefront rocks early in the morning, or in the evening all are good bets for connecting with an early fall steelhead trout. With that said, a small number of fish have run well upstream, notably a steelhead caught by Cedar Point Road on the Rocky this week, and a smallmouth angler was surprised by a steelie all the way up by Rogers Road on the Chagrin River (he noted the fight was exciting while it lasted, but unsuccessful, on his under-equipped 5 weight fly rod). A post-spawn pink salmon carcass was observed on the Rocky this week, as well. Smallmouth bass have been biting in the rivers, as well.
The yellow perch anglers around Cleveland are heading out again following a rough week on the lake. Before the shake-up, perch were biting in around 50-54 feet of water off E. 72nd and 40-49 feet of water off Wildwood Park. Anglers are using perch spreaders and live or salted shiners, although most local bait shops have had golden shiners and fathead minnows in place of hard-to-find live emerald shiners lately. Perch are just starting to bite from the north-facing breakwall at E. 55th, as well.
Rock bass, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, crappie, freshwater drum, and sunfish species are also found along the Cleveland shoreline in late summer/early fall and can be caught on offerings such as tube jigs, drop-shot rigs, and live bait. A few locals have reported walleyes caught at E. 72nd Street after dark the past few weeks. A highlight has been an abundance of juvenile walleye this year, which promises a continuation of our great Lake Erie walleye fishing into the foreseeable future.
Cleveland Metroparks, www.clevelandmetroparks.com