For a versatile angler, rivers are made for wading

American Rivers annually publishes a list of the 10 most at-risk rivers in the U.S.

To me, owning a boat is a wonderful thing, but it doesn’t mean that I need it to catch fish.  In fact, I have found that some of my best fishing experiences have been in a pair of breathable waders standing in the middle of a flowing river.

I have at least three wadeable rivers within a 30-minute drive from my door and they all hold many species of fish to test my abilities as an angler.  I really don’t even need much equipment to fish these rivers and all it takes is a bit of internet research and looking at maps to find some fishing areas that will fill the need for a good battle or two.

Wading is simple and gets back to the roots of fishing at its best.  Very little tackle is needed to fish a river and depending on your species of choice you may end up catching more than what you bargain for.

The weather is changing and soon the walleyes will be on the feed. The presentations that are in my vest will vary, however the best that I like to use is a simple hook, split shot and a minnow.

Jigs and twister tails are an all-around standby that will catch fish all spring, summer and fall.  Matching the color of the tail to the water clarity and the jig head to the current will bring many golden eyes to hand.

Match the size of the bait and weight of the jighead to the current and depth I am fishing.  These jigs are not always fished on the bottom as some areas you will find that swimming the jig higher in the water column can be more productive.

Traveling light is the way to go when on the river. A small assortment of jigs and tails can fit into a small pouch and minnow baits or cranks fit nicely into a small plastic double sided box.

Wading the rivers is certainly not any sort of fancy endeavor.  You are not adorned with fancy shirts and riding in flashy boats.  Many even prefer to skip the waders and just use an old pair of tennis shoes.  Not me, but to each their own.

The next time you are looking to scratch an itch of the fishing bug just pick up a map and take a drive.  You are likely to run into a river somewhere and getting a line wet is just a matter of minutes away.


Categories: Blog Content, Fishing, Illinois – Cory Yarmuth

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