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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.
Roberts Creek Lake
Crappie - Fair: Trolling small shad colored crankbaits is working well for picking up suspended crappie.
Big Creek Lake
Channel Catfish - Good: Good catches of channel cats are being caught on the upper end of the lake drifting cut bait. Cut creek chubs seem to be working best. White Bass - Good: White bass are the most aggressive bite in Big Creek. Troll shallow diving crankbaits on the upper half of the lake on the windblown side. Bluegill - Good: Bluegill are being caught drifting pieces of nightcrawler along the edge of the vegetation beds on the upper half of the lake and over the roadbeds and brush piles that are in 15 feet of water or less.
Hickory Grove Lake
Bluegill - Good: Bluegill can be easily caught fishing live bait over pallet and brush piles in eight feet of water or less, especially those between the island and beach and out from the plover bay shelter.
Red Rock Reservoir
Channel Catfish - Good: Anglers drifting cut bait are doing very well on good sized channel cats. White Bass - Fair: Look for schools of shad busting the surface then troll or cast lipless crankbaits or spoons in these areas. Try multiple colors to find their preference. Good starting colors are chrome or a blue/chrome combo. The Marina Point and west of the mile long bridge are good starting points.
Channel Catfish - Excellent: Drifting cut creek chubs or dead shad north of the mile long bridge is producing some excellent catfishing. Expect some healthy five pounds plus cats. White Bass - Good: The white bass bite continues to be fairly good. The best activity has been in the Sandpiper Point area, Oak Grove area, and around the Mile Long Bridge. Cast or troll spoons and shad colored crankbaits. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) - Fair: Anglers trolling the Sandpiper area are also getting into some wipers. The best activity has been in the evenings.
Des Moines River (Stratford to Saylorville Lake)
Channel Catfish - Good: Boat navigation is challenging, but good numbers of channel cats are being caught on cut chubs, suckers, shad and stink baits.
The white bass action is still fair on the large reservoirs. Catfishing is excellent in the reservoirs and most lakes using cut bait. Rivers are low and difficult to navigate in a boat, but the catfishing is good using cut bait and stink baits. Bluegill and crappie are being caught by drifting or fishing over pallet and brush piles. For information on central Iowa lakes and rivers contact Ben Dodd or Andy Otting at 515-432-2823.
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 bluegills can be caught drifting small jigs. Largemouth Bass - Good: Largemouth bass are being caught casting around jetties and weed edges. Many fish are in the 12 to 15-inch range.
Nodaway has one small boat ramp. Water temperature is 75 degrees. Channel Catfish - Fair: Catfish are being caught along the north shoreline and the dam with dip bait. Bluegill - Slow: Bluegill are being caught around brush piles with nightcrawlers. Crappie - Fair: Crappies are being caught vertical jigging around brush piles. Fish average nine inches with a few 11-inch fish being caught. Evenings seem to be best.
Orient Lake has one concrete boat ramp. Water temperature is 75 degrees. Channel Catfish - Good: Catfish are being caught on shrimp. Fish average 14 to 18 inches.
Cold Springs Lake
Cold Springs has one concrete boat ramp. Water temperature is 75 degrees. Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish are being caught in less than 6 feet of water using cut bait. Fish average 2.5 pounds.
Lake Anita has two concrete ramps. Water temperature is in the high 70s. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills up to nine inches are being caught drifting and around brush piles. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Largemouth bass are being caught along weed edges and the road beds. Bass are all sizes up to 20 inches. Crappie - Slow: The crappies being caught are around brush piles and underwater reefs. Late afternoon is the best bite. Fish average nine inches.
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 blood bait or liver. Bluegill - Slow: The best bluegill bite is early in the morning using nightcrawlers under a bobber. Fish average eight inches. Largemouth Bass - Slow: Largemouth are being caught using Powerbait worms around sunken trees. Most fish are 12 to 14 inches.
Viking Lake has four feet of water clarity. 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.
Manawa is full and has a slight algal bloom. Water temperature is 78 degrees. Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish are being caught on the west and south side of the lake using shrimp or Sonny's dip bait. Fish up to six pounds have been reported.
Middle Raccoon River (above Van Meter)
The Middle Raccoon River below Lenon Mills dam is at a fishable level using small boats and canoes. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Smallmouth bass can be caught in pools above riffles and around rock casting twister tails.
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 - Fair: 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 cooling and fishing is picking up. Panfish are being caught drifting and along vegetation edges. Catfishing has been good on interior rivers. For more information on fishing call the southwest district office in Lewis at 712-769-2587.