Ohio Outdoor News Fishing & Hunting Report – June 21, 2019
Buckeye Lake (Fairfield, Licking, Perry counties) – Fishermen are trolling crankbaits or worm harnesses in any area with structure for the saugeye bite, according to local reports. Fish the bait in 8 to 12 feet of water for the best results. Some hybrid stripers are being caught, too. Fish for them with chicken livers or nightcrawlers on the bottom.
Alum Creek Lake (Delaware County) – Anglers are successfully catching saugeyes in shallow water by trolling Flicker Shad or similar baits. The best bite is coming in the early morning or late evening hours. Anglers are trolling the baits at 2 mph or so in 5 to 10 feet of water.
Delaware Lake (Delaware County) – Crappies continue to be the quarry that anglers are chasing at Delaware State Park’s lake. Troll or cast baits just north of the marina for the best panfish bite. Crappies are ranging up to 12 inches.
Hoover Reservoir (Delaware, Franklin counties) – Saugeyes are being caught in good numbers by anglers slow-trolling Flicker Shad or similar baits. Most of the fish aren’t overly large, with the biggest being reported at about 17 inches. Crappies too are being caught by the trollers.
Indian Lake (Logan County) – Trollers employing what else but Flicker Shad are catching saugeyes here, according to reports. One of the reported hot spots is the Dream Bridge area. Saugeyes up to 16 inches are being caught.
Portage River (Ottawa County) – Anglers fishing the river near Port Clinton are catching a lot of crappies, although most have been small fish, in the 4- to 7-inch range. The best setup has been to use a stinger with the bobber set about 3 feet down, according to local reports.
Maumee River (Lucas County) – Wading to Bluegrass Island was possible at the time of this writing for the first time in about seven weeks, according to Maumee Bait and Tackle. Anglers there are targeting white bass and smallmouth bass. On the other hand, the white perch bite is on, the bait shop reports. During their spring spawning runs, white perch are caught on live and cut bait as well as artificials.
Maumee Bait and Tackle, www.maumeetackle.net
West Harbor (Lake Erie) – Fishermen are netting good numbers of crappies and yellow perch right now at this hot fishing spot. The simple setup has been an emerald shiner under a float. Channel catfish and a bunch of rock bass are also in the mix.
Berlin Reservoir (Portage, Mahoning, Stark counties) – Crappies are being caught by anglers employing jigs and 3-inch twister tails or live minnows under a float. Jig and nightcrawler combinations are producing walleyes, as are worm harnesses in deeper water. Other fishermen are utilizing nightcrawlers or chicken livers to catch channel catfish. Fish those baits on the bottom for the best bite.
Pymatuning Reservoir (Ashtabula County) – Anglers are rigging up worm harnesses and drifting for walleyes here with some success. Crappies and smallmouth bass are also being reported. Walleyes are ranging up to a decent 18 inches. The best bite for walleyes is coming anywhere on the lake where you can find stumps. Be prepared, though, to lose some baits on snags by fishing this way.
Atwood Lake (Carroll, Tuscarawas counties) – Anglers working 6 to 15 feet of water offshore here are catching crappies in decent numbers. Those trolling small crankbaits or jigs are catching most of the fish. Crappies are ranging up to 10 inches.
Mosquito Creek Lake (Trumbull County) – Anglers drifting worm harnesses are catching a few crappies and yellow perch. The best bite is coming along the shoreline in shallow water. Fish the weedline for the bet bite on crappies, perch, and largemouth bass.
Rocky Fork Lake (Highland County) – Fishermen are continuing to catch good numbers of crappies here, but sizes of most fish have been on the small side. Try a wax worm or minnow under a float and you should catch plenty of fish.
Paint Creek Lake (Highland County) – Anglers fishing shallow water are catching bluegills and crappies. Fish wax worms or jig and minnow combinations in 4 to 8 feet of water for best results.
C.J. Brown Reservoir (Clark County) – Anglers are catching a mixed bag of fish here, according to reports. Walleyes, channel catfish, bluegills, and crappies have all been on the hit list. The successful setup has been any type of live bait such as nightcrawlers or minnows or jig and trailer combinations.
Caesar Creek Lake (Warren, Clinton, Greene counties) – Anglers on this large lake in southwest Ohio are doing well for saugeyes and crappies at the moment. Water clarity is reportedly decent, even after a good amount of rain in the area recently. Anglers are employing Bandits to catch both species. Dawn and dusk are reportedly the best times to get on a good bite.
Cowan Lake (Clinton County) – Swimjigs are taking their share of crappies at this lake outside of Wilmington. Crappies are ranging up to 12 inches, and the post-spawn bite is reportedly a good one here.
Clendening Lake (Harrison County) – Jerkbaits continue to be the hot item for saugeyes here. Some decent size fish are being reported, but also a lot of shorts. Fish the bait in 8 to 15 feet of water for the best saugeye bite.
Salt Fork Lake (Guernsey County) – Fishermen continue to chase crappies and channel catfish with the catfish bite being a little better. Water clarity isn’t the greatest right now with a lot of recent precipitation. Turbid water doesn’t seem to bother the catfish, though, and anglers are catching them by fishing chicken livers on the bottom.
Leesville Lake (Carroll County) – The largemouth bass bite has been the best thing going on this lake that is typically known for muskies. Anglers are using plastic worms in black or motor oil patterns fished along the shoreline to pick up the bass bite.
Piedmont Lake (Belmont County) – Saugeyes are being caught by anglers trolling Flicker Shad or similar baits. Anglers are trolling the baits in a variety of patterns at slow speeds for the best bite. Crappies, too, are being caught by the trollers.
Lake Erie Region
• The daily bag limit for walleyes in Ohio waters of Lake Erie is six fish per angler. The minimum size limit for walleyes 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 five fish per angler. The minimum size limit is 12 inches.
• Black bass (largemouth and smallmouth bass): From May 1-June 21, the daily bag limit is one fish (singly or in combination) per angler with an 18-inch minimum size limit. Beginning June 22, the bag limit is five fish, with a minimum size of 14 inches.
Where: Fishing has been excellent. Most of the fish being caught are 19-23 inches. Many quick limits have been reported from Port Clinton to Lorain, especially around the islands and the Marblehead Peninsula.
How: Fish have been caught mostly by trolling spoons and harnesses, but many anglers are finding success casting and drifting with harnesses too. Anglers have been reporting a wide range of depths, with 15-45 feet of water all being successful. Anglers near Locust and Toussaint reefs are reporting depths from 15-25 feet being best. Baits in shades of gold, green, and purple seem to be working the best.
Where: Largemouth bass fishing has been excellent in various marinas and harbors, as well as Sandusky Bay in recent weeks as water temperatures have been increasing.
How: Anglers have been doing well throwing crankbaits, jigs, and various soft plastic riggings.
Where: The bite in Sandusky Bay has really picked up with high numbers of fish being caught, many weighing over 10 pounds. Shoreline access to the bay is available at the old Route 2 bridge in Bay View and Port Clinton.
How: Most anglers fish the bottom or drift with baits on the bottom. Common baits include nightcrawlers, cut bait, and frozen shrimp.
Where: Excellent fishing reported in 30-40 feet of water north of Gold Coast in Lakewood, in 30-50 feet of water northwest of Geneva, and in 45-60 feet of water northeast of Ashtabula.
How: Walleyes have been caught by trolling with crankbaits or worm harnesses assisted by divers, and by casting and drifting weight-forward spinners. Good colors to try are lemon drop, blue and silver, green, and red. Anglers fishing from shore are catching a few fish off the piers in Cleveland using spinners and stick baits.
Where: There have been a few reports of anglers catching fish in 15-30 feet of water around the Gordon Park east breakwall lighthouse in Cleveland, and in 30-35 feet of water north of the Chagrin River.
How: Anglers are fishing from the bottom to 3-5 cranks above the bottom. Try different depths near the bottom until you locate the fish. Use minnows on spreaders. Shore anglers are catching fish off the piers in Cleveland using spreaders tipped with minnows.
Where: Excellent fishing has been reported in 10-30 feet of water around harbor areas in Cleveland, Fairport Harbor, Ashtabula, and Conneaut.
How: Anglers are using crankbaits, tube jigs, spinnerbaits, and drop-shot rigs tipped with nightcrawlers.
As we transition into early summer, highlight species targeted around Cleveland Metroparks include smallmouth bass, walleye, yellow perch, largemouth bass, panfish, channel catfish, and common carp. Smallmouth bass are typically found in the deeper, rocky pools of the Rocky River during the day in early 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 3-4 inches length is one of the best producers of bass in the river. “Smallies” also bite well on live bait (i.e., minnow, crayfish, and leeches), lures (i.e., spinners and minnow plugs), and flies (i.e., crayfish patterns, Clouser minnows, dark brown or olive sculpin or muddler minnow patterns). Bass of all sizes are abundant in the river, with a healthy number of trophy lake-run fish available through at least early June. It has been very encouraging to see most anglers releasing the larger bass recently so that these fine gamefish can be caught again. Rock bass are also present in the same river areas.
Channel catfish and large carp are also present in some of these same areas in the river. Good numbers of channel catfish stocked in May also remain to be caught at Wallace Lake and the Ohio & Erie Canal fishing area, as well as several smaller Metroparks waters. More catfish will be stocked at various locations in late June, as well.
Cleveland Metroparks, www.clevelandmetroparks.com