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Fishing Report for the Weekend of 7/21/17

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According to this week’s ‘Fishing Report’, largemouth bass are hitting the hooks pretty heavily. Mostly during the early morning and evening hours. You can read it for yourself. Here is the Iowa DNR ‘Fishing Report’ for the weekend of 7/21/17.

Bigalk Creek
The road is closed at 30th St. west of the Howard County Conservation Board parking area on Bigalk Creek. The bridge is out until further notice.  Rainbow Trout – Good.

Cedar River (above Nashua)
Water levels are somewhat stable and have reached summer flows. Clarity is excellent. Visit  https://waterdata.usgs.gov/ia/nwis/rt for current water level information. Channel Catfish – Fair: Stink baits, cut baits and crawlers attract hungry catfish. Find fish around log jams and slack water areas. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Smallmouth are hitting a variety of lures. Crawdad imitations work best. Walleye – Slow: Try a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler. Drift a jig in the main channel or find deeper holes.

Coldwater Creek
The private property south of Coldwater Creek Rd. bridge on Coldwater Creek is closed to the public until further notice. Brown Trout – Good.

Decorah District Streams
Be respectful of private property; it’s a privilege to fish these areas. Call 563-927-5736 for current catchable trout stocking locations. Brook Trout – Good: For nymphing or wet flies, use streamer patterns such as wholly buggers to imitate fish, or a pink squirrel to imitate scuds. Use dry flies size 12 to 20 imitating midges and sulfers hatching off the water. Try also a variety of caddis and mayfly nymphs. Brown Trout – Good: Fish will soon be looking for terrestrial insects falling into the water. Ants are a favorite. Gnats, mayflies, and caddis flies are hatching. Rainbow Trout – Good: Use jigs tipped with twistertails, feathered spinnerbaits, or flashy spoons. Use a nightcrawler or cheese to catch a freshly stocked fish.

Lake Hendricks
Clean off your boat trailer before you leave the boat ramp. Visibility is marginal due to a green algae bloom on lake.Find the latest how spots with the Iowa DNR’s fishing atlas. Set your GPS coordinates to WGS84 to key in to your structure preference. Bluegill – Fair: Catch bluegills on the bottom at the ends of the jetties; use a small piece of crawler. Channel Catfish – Good: Use stink baits or worms along a rocky shoreline after sunset. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try a topwater lure on the edge of a vegetation bed. Early morning and evenings are best.

Lake Meyer
A green algae bloom is reducing water clarity. Clean off your boat trailers and drain boats before you move to another water body. Bluegill – Slow: Find gills in deeper water on edges of vegetation beds. Fish off the docks and jetties for a big one. Channel Catfish– Good: Use stink baits and nightcrawlers in the evenings along the rock jetties or around stumps for a cruising cat. Largemouth Bass – Good: Top water lures and buzz baits are good, but try a frog just off the weed line in about 5 feet of water. Early mornings are best. Use frogs or buzz bait in calm water. Black Crappie – Good: Catch crappie near the docks and jetties in the evenings. Northern Pike – Fair: Try near the docks and jetties early mornings or evenings.

Turkey River (above Clermont)
Water levels are stabilizing, but conditions could change depending on rainfall. Water temperatures are in the mid 70’s. Visibility is excellent. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Lures imitating a crawdad will drive smallies crazy. Walleye – Fair: Use a crawler or jig and twister tail fished along a current break or in a deeper pool.

Turkey River (below Clermont)
Water levels have stabilized but flows remain elevated. Water temperatures are in the mid 70’s. Visibility is excellent.  Visit https://waterdata.usgs.gov/ia/nwis/uv?site_no=05412500 for more information. Smallmouth Bass – Slow.

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)
Flows remain high as water levels stabilize. Water temperatures are mid 70’s with much improved visibility Toss a lure upstream and let it float through the current along a ledge or current seam. Walleye – Fair: Try a jig tipped with a minnow, nightcrawler, or natural colored twister tail. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: A nightcrawler or crawfish crankbait will attract a smallmouth

Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)
Water levels continue to fall but flows remain high. Water temperatures in the mid 70’s with improved visibility.  A variety of baits are working, but nightcrawlers work best in stained water. Visit https://waterdata.usgs.gov/ia/nwis/rt for current water level information. Walleye– Slow. Smallmouth Bass – Fair. Channel Catfish – Good: Bank anglers are catching fish using a jig tipped with a crawler with weight to keep it on the bottom.

Volga Lake
Water clarity is marginal due to a green algae bloom. Find fish attracting structure locations on the Iowa DNR’s fishing atlasBluegill – Slow. Largemouth Bass – Good: Find bass in shallow water toward evening; use topwater lures. Black Crappie – Slow: Crappies are suspended around submersed structure during the day and come in shallow in the evening. Use a hook tipped with a minnow or bright colored jig. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use worms, cut baits, and stink bait in the late evenings and night. During daylight hours, find catfish near stump fields and submersed logs.

Be prepared for some unstable weather Thursday through Sunday. Localized flooding is possible in areas with repeated thunderstorms. Wild parsnip continues to be a problem along trails and accesses. Wear light clothing to protect exposed skin from sun and the effects of wild parsnip. For current fishing information, please call the Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.


Big Woods Lake
Anglers are doing well on Big Woods Lake for walleye and northern pike. Walleye – Good: Try jigging a jig and twister tipped with a nightcrawler or trolling a crankbait.

Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)
The park ranger reports that the bluegill and largemouth bass fishing has been good. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use topwater artificial baits and plastics off of the jetties and dam. Bluegill – Good: Try off of the jetties and in the cove areas in 2- to 4- feet of water.

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
Anglers in Black Hawk and Bremer Counties are doing well on smallmouth bass, channel catfish, northern pike and walleye. Fishing has been really good this past week on the Cedar River. Channel Catfish – Good: Use dead/live chubs, nightcrawlers, stink baits or leaches fished on the bottom of the river. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Try topwater, crankbaits and spinner baits along rocky shoreline or other instream habitat. Walleye – Fair: Use a jig and twister tipped with a nightcrawler. Northern Pike – Good: Use large spinner baits or live chubs under a bobber.

George Wyth Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Mornings and evenings have been best; try topwater baits, spinner baits or crankbaits.

Harold Getty Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Mornings and evenings have been best; try topwater baits, spinner baits or crankbaits.

Manchester District Streams
Anglers are doing well catching trout on imitation hoppers on Spring Branch Creek and other area streams with a banner crop of grasshopper this summer. Brown Trout – Good: Use imitation hoppers on the surface.

Maquoketa River (above Monticello)
Recent creel reports show that anglers are catching a variety of species on the Maquoketa River in Delaware County.  Walleye – Fair: Use a jig and twister tipped with a nightcrawler. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Try plastics and spinnerbaits along rocky shoreline or other instream habitat. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use dead chubs, nightcrawlers or leaches fished on the bottom of the river.

Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock)
Smallmouth Bass – Good: Use topwater, crankbaits and spinner baits along rocky shoreline or other instream habitat.

Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)
The Upper Wapsipinicon River is producing good catches of northern pike. Northern Pike – Good: Use large spinner baits or live chubs under a bobber.

With the recent summer storms, interior river fishing has been unpredictable with changing river levels. Most anglers are targeting channel catfish during early morning or late evening hours to beat the summer heat. Trout streams remain in good condition. Contact the N.E. District Office at 563-927-3276 for more information.

Click here for past Fishing Reports

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