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Midwest Fishing Report: Lakes/areas

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Tried to pick up a few vacation areas for the holiday weekend edition of the lakes/areas section of the Midwest Fishing Report.

This is the extended online version of the MFR, which appears on the Sun-Times outdoors page on Wednesdays. Well, it is the lakes and areas section.

If you have suggestions, post in the comments section or let me know at


Night catches are underway at Kenosha, Wis. Mik-Lurch reported good action at Ludington, Mich. Locally is mixed. At Waukegan, Talmadge Hargraves III at the Salmon Stop said small kings moved into the harbor, and he expects the bigger ones coming shortly. In Chicago, Steve Palmisano at Henry's said, ``One here and one there; but the fever in the air, any day it will be starting.''


Palmisano reported bluegill and largemouth more active in forest preserve lakes. As the Fish of the Week showed, it has been a banner year for largemouth on local ponds. I am not sure what the heat of the next two days will do to the fishing after quite a few nights down in the 50s dropping water temperatures.


For guide Mike Norton's report, go to, then click on fishing, then lake report.


Triangle reported decent catfish, some bigger than 20 pounds. White bass are good around river areas, but also try main lake shore lines shallow. Muskie are improving on bucktails or small jerkbaits, try main lake points in 8-12 feet or current areas. Bluegill are tough, try different areas. Crappie are improving, moving shallower.

For more reports, see

More Chain info at


BRAIDWOOD/MAZONIA: Staff reported 93 on north end, 100 on south; however, boaters are catching some big channel catfish. Close goes to 7 p.m. on Saturday.

LaSALLE:Through Sept. 30, the lake is open Wednesday through Sunday. Continue to hear multiple good reports of blues and receive some photos.


DELAVAN: guide Dave Duwe sent this:

Delavan Lake 8/28/11 through 9/5/11
The fishing pressure continues to be a factor, you can see it early in the week when nothing has changed and the fishing slows down a bit. By the beginning of the weekend the fish are back to biting. The fish are in the transition period between summer and fall. For most species of fish, you can catch them both shallow and deep. Over the last week, the water temperature has remained pretty constant at 77-78 degrees. With dropping water temperatures, the bite will change from nightcrawlers to fathead minnows.
Largemouth bass can be caught in the 8-10 ft range, or suspended in the main lake basin around pods of bluegills. For the shallow fish, they can be caught on fire tiger crankbaits, wacky rigging Senkos or on split shot rigged nightcrawlers. I've been concentrating on the main lake points. For the deep fish, swim baits or jigging spoons will do the trick. The fish can be readily seen on a good graph. A good spot to try is off of Willow Point and off of the Village point.
Bluegill fishing has been spotty. You can find them, however, you need to look harder for the bigger fish. Once you get on a school, you can catch a limit pretty easily, but it may take a few hours to find the school. I've been fishing slip bobbers with leaf worms or small nightcrawlers. The best depth has been 8-10 ft of water. The better spots have been by Township Park or by Assembly Park.
Walleye fishing remains slow during the day, and above average at night. Night fishermen are catching most of their fish trolling crankbaits, the best color crank baits have been pearl or fire tiger, or casting main lake points. The best locations have been the deep water associated with weed flats.
Northern pike have started to improve. They are in 23-27 ft of water. The best approach is lindy rigging medium suckers. Look for them by the island, Browns Channel or the old Boy Scout camp. They are not as schooled up as earlier in the summer so drifting or trolling is the key to covering a lot of water.
Good luck and I hope to see you on the water. For guide parties, please call Dave Duwe at 608-883-2050
Daily Reports
8/27/11 Delavan Lake, partly cloudy, 78 degrees, N wind at 5-10 mph. Water temp 78 degrees. Caught 12 largemouth - 2 were legal, and 1 walleye. Fishing was good first thing in the a.m., around 8 a.m. the fish just shut down. Fishing pressure was tremendous. Every spot had one to two boats on it. Our fish were caught on split shot rigged nightcrawlers.
8/26/11 Delavan Lake, partly cloudy, 75 degrees, light SW winds. Water temp 78 degrees. Caught 17 largemouth - 3 were legal. The best location was main lake points. Caught most of the fish on a split shot rigged nightcrawler.
8/24/11 Delavan Lake, sunny, 90 degrees, SW winds at 15-20 mph. Water temp 77 degrees. Caught 20 largemouth, 1 smallmouth and 1 northern pike. The bite was a combination of slip bobbered suckers and split shot rigged nightcrawlers. The best depth was 10-13 ft. Fished main lake points.
8/23/11 Delavan Lake, cloudy, 79 degrees, SW winds at 15-20 mph. Water temp 78 degrees. Caught 18 largemouth - 5 were legal and 1 smallmouth bass. Nothing really changed from the day before, however, the fish bit much better. The best presentation was a split shot rigged nightcrawler in 8-10 ft of water.
8/22/11 Delavan lake, sunny, 80 degrees, SW winds at 10 mph. Water temp 78 degrees. Caught 12 largemouth bass and a few bluegills. Overall fishing was rather tough. The best bite was on a slip bobber rig sucker in 15 ft of water. Concentrated on main lake points.

GENEVA: From Duwe:

Lake Geneva 8/28/11 through 9/5/11
Lake Geneva fishing has been improving. With the cooling water temperatures, the surface temperature is right around 75 degrees, it is moving the fish shallower and more accessible to the average fishermen. With Labor Day approaching, the boat traffic will reduce by about 10 fold.
Largemouth bass can be caught on the weedline in 15-18 ft of water, or in the early mornings, on top water lures around emergent weeds. For the weedline bass, Carolina rigging zoom lizards or dragging football head jigs have been producing most of the action. For topwater, the lures suggest are chrome/blue and chrome/black Chug bugs. The best locations have been by Trinkes or by Linn pier.
Walleye fishing has been above average at night. Look for the fish on the weed flats in 15 ft of water suspended about 2 ft above the weed tops. Trolling large Rapalas or Walleye Bandits are the best choice. The best location has been by Trinkes or in Geneva Bay.
Northern pike fishing remains consistent. The fish are still on the thermocline in 30 ft of water. The best location has been by Maytag Point or in Fontana Beach. Lindy rigging medium suckers is the presentation of choice.
Rock bass are the most consistent bite on the lake. They can be caught in 12-15 ft of water. The best location is by the old Military Academy or by Coleman's Point. Split shot rigged nightcrawlers are always a reliable choice.
Smallmouth bass are starting to school up off main lake points. They can be caught in 18-20 ft of water. The best approach is lindy rigging nightcrawlers or leeches right on bottom. When you find the right school, you should be able to catch 5 or 6 fish in short order. Look for the fish by the Military Academy or by the Holiday Camp.
Good luck and I hope to see you on the water. For guide parties, please call Dave Duwe at 608-883-2050


SHELBYVILLE: Guide Ken Wilson of Lithia Guide Service reported catfish are good in the creek areas, drift fishing with cut bait. Crappie are good on 5-10 feet on jigs or minnows, part way back in the coves.

EMIQUON: Emiquon Preserve near Lewistown is open to fishing. Interested parties may request a permit (remember you need the new one for 2011) and list of rules between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. at the Dickson Mounds Museum in Lewistown. There is no fee. No gas powered motors are permitted, and bank fishing is not allowed. For more, call (309) 547-2730.

EVERGREEN: Site staff sent this:

Evergreen Lake Fishing Report
August 29, 2011

Water Conditions
Water Clarity: 1-6 ft.
Water Level: 18-24" below
Water Temps: Upper 70's

Not much has changed in fishing on the lake this week. The word on Crappie is that they are being caught in fifteen to twenty feet of water with minnows floated under a slip bobber seven to eight feet down. Some are also being caught casting jigs towards the shore with a slow retrieve. Saugeye fishing still remains slow with very little going on. Bass have been fair around deep water structure. Catfish have been caught on various baits, with several coming from deep water near the spillway.
Good Luck, Brad

Any updated fishing report will be posted here.

REND: Jason Johns of Todd Gessner Outdoors reported crappie moved shallow on laydowns or stick-up brush; jigs or minnows, but spooky so use a slip-cork and stay off them. Bass are chasing shad shallow. Channel catfish are excellent, taking about anything, cut shad or dipbait are best.

LAKE OF EGYPT: Johns said there's a good evening and morning surface bite on bass.


For Ohio DNR report go to and or call (888) HOOKFISH.


For shoreline salmon, see top. There's been no reports.

CHICAGO:: Capt. Bill Kelly of Leprechaun Charters reported bigger lakers in 100-140 feet with some kings, coho and rainbow; good kings and small lakers in 65-85 east of Diversey to Evanston; and same at the R4, but with some bigger lakers. Capt. Bob Poteshman of Confusion Charters reported good kings and lakers around the R4. No perch. Best shore action is rock bass.

WAUKEGAN: Hargraves reported boaters taking some salmon in 60 feet straight out on spoons or white flies and Spin Doctor.

NORTH POINT: Poteshman reported good kings on the hill in 80-90 on Tuesday. The hill is best mornings, deeper (150-250) is good all day for a mixed bag of kings, steelhead and coho. He favors Dodgers and flies, but uses spoons on Leadcore or downriggers.

CHICAGO NOTE: The fisherman's parking pass--$10 for two months and available at Henry's Sports & Bait--is needed to park south of the main building at Northerly Island.

CHICAGO'S FISHERMAN'S PARKING: The $10 parking passes for the small fishermen's lots at Burnham and DuSable harbors and now the south side at Northerly Island are available at Henry's.

RICHARD J. DALEY SPORTFISHING DERBY: Runs through Sept. 30. The species for September are carp and kings. Go to or call (312) 225-8538.


D&S Bait reported bluegill suspended or on weed lines on Monona as best, keepers take sorting. Some good white bass on Mendota weed lines. Starting to fish muskie again on Monona and Waubesa.


MINOCQUA: Guide Kurt Justice of Kurt's Island Sport Shop sent this:

Stable weather this past week has held things fairly consistent. A warm up during the week looks to end with a cool down by end of the Holiday weekend.

Water temps have stayed relatively consisted averaging 69-71. Look for this to rise a bit, then drop during the early part of next week, hopefully prompting some better action from Musky and walleye.

Largemouth Bass: Good. Anglers probing weed pockets and edges with plastic (craws, creatures, bugs) scoring better fish. For action, cast pre-rigged plastic worms, spinnerbaits and shallow running cranks across weed tops. Top water still producing during evenings.

Smallmouth Bass: Good. Anglers pursuing smallies finding fish in deeper water of 26-36' over gravel humps. Drop-shotting Craw Papis, 3 and 4" drop-shot worms or football jigs with Chomper skirted grubs. Leeches and crawlers on 1/8oz jigs worked over sandgrass flats finding fish. Lipless cranks (Rattle Traps, Rattle Raps) counted down also scoring over sandgrass.

Musky: Good. During the right weather and right time of day. Overcast and evenings bring fish in to take topwater (Whopper Ploppers, Tallywackers, Top Raiders), large blade bucktails and fast moving glide baits. Sunny, cloudless days have held mid-day action down, but nice fish in the mid 40's reported with a 49 1/4" and 52" caught this week.

Bluegill: Good. Fish deep weed edges for suspending fish. Small leeches, worms, small plastics. Once school is found, fishing is good.

Perch: Good. Weeds of 8-10'. Cast 1/32 oz jig with 2" twister tail till fish found. Bait up slip-float with medium fatheads or frozen crayfish tails to catch eaters of 8-10", a few 11-12" reported.

Pike: Fair-Good. Casting spinnerbaits (Boonie Baits) or spoons (Jawbreakers, Silver Minnows) over 8-12' weeds on days with light wind. chubs or suckers under floats on calm days.

Walleye: Fair, but improving. Cooler temps, some clouds and wind would really help this bite. Best action on leeches, crawlers along 15-24' edge bases.

Nighttime anglers on lighted slip-floats and leeches. After dark fish moving up to 8-15' weed edges.

Crappies: Fair. Best along deep weed edges suspended 2/3 way down. Minnows always good choice, but small swimming plastic tails (1 1/2" to 2" Charlie Bees or Twister Tails) slowly dropped down weed edges taking nice 10-12" fish on larger deep lakes.

Weather has been the biggest factor (isn't it always?). Lots of sun, not enough wind, but overall looks like we will get some of what we need this weekend to help bass and gill anglers at first, then musky and walleye anglers by end of weekend.

Andrew Ragas, Counsellor of the Fish Parliament, sent this:

Northern Wisconsin (Minocqua)

Just returned from a quick weekend of exclusively musky fishing and
lake hopping throughout the Northwoods. Water temperatures ranging
anywhere from 67 to 72 degrees on lakes while it is anywhere from 68
to 74 degrees on the rivers and flowages.

Best musky fishing for both action and size currently taking place on
the dark water river systems and flowages. Boated three over the
weekend and raised 18 over the course of two days with a friend, with
at least 10 of them going at 40" or larger. Missed several larger fish
up to 45" while downsizing to baits 6 inches or smaller. Followers are
frequent so be sure to throw out a follow-up lure. Top producers
orange showgirls, double 6 and 7 Sims Spinners, and anything with a
bright orange profile that gives off a lot of vibration. If fishing
the dark water of flowages and rivers, concentrate on fishing shallow
cover in 5 foot or less; stumps, reedlines, weedlines, shallow cabbage
beds, and downed wood.

Most action taking place during mid-mornings, and picking up again in
mid to late-afternoons. If incoming fronts are on their way, or there
are any slight changes in weather from cloud cover to wind, that's a
huge plus and activity will surge.


Mik-Lurch reported Mik-Lurch reported steelhead far up Salt and Trail. Kings are deep in Illinois or Michigan waters. No perch. Bluegill are good on Willow Slough by dipping in the weed pockets. Remember, Willow Slough closes to boat traffic on Thursday and remains so through the early waterfowl seasons.


Lakeside reported catfish are good for shore fishermen, bass are good on edges or drops on deeper crankbaits, crappie are moving deeper but some are on the shallow cribs.

For reports, click here.


The fresh report from the Wisconsin DNR wasn't posted yet, but click here to see it.


Tyler Harmon Facebooked A few kings, very scattered. No ones catching any, but i've watched a few in the fish ladder cam.



Fishing Headquarters



MICHIGAN DNR REPORT,1607,7-153-10364-34956--,00.html






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This page contains a single entry by Dale Bowman published on August 31, 2011 8:05 AM.

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