Fishing Reports and News August 11

Here are some of the latest fishing reports and news.  Got outdoor news, photos, fishing reports?  Send them to

Pond Report by Ken HUSKER O'Malley

Hey Don, The bass bite is really going on area lakes. Most are covered with heavy moss, so the pattern lately has been throwing bandit footloose crankbaits, swim baits, and flukes in open areas of the moss. Points created by the moss have been the most productive as these areas have been used as ambush points by the bass. Larger bass have been caught with this pattern during the evening hours. Attached are a few photos of the nicer ones.   TTYL

Husker Outdoors
Water Werks Fishing Team

Rend Lake Fishing report by Randy Cordray, US Army Corp of Engineers

LARGEMOUTH BASS Good Worms, black and blue jigs, minnows, and spinner baits. Fish in shallow bays near brush cover and bushes. Fish around bridges and along the rocks. Reports of fish being caught around Jackie Branch, Sandusky Cove, and below the dam. 14” minimum length limit, 6 daily creel limit. 1 fish daily creel limit in PONDS 14” minimum length.
CRAPPIE Excellent Jigs are working well. Quarter-Ounce pink and white tub jigs. Small & Medium Minnows. Meal worms. Fish the main lake drop off areas.  Try the Gun Creek Area. From shore fish near structures, hot spots are Jackie Branch, Sandusky,  Sailboat Harbor, Marcum coves, and Ina Boat Ramp. 25 fish daily creel limit with no more than 10 fish 10 inches or longer
BLUEGILL Good Crickets, worms, wax worms, meal worms, small jigs. Fish in the back of necks and on flat shallow banks and on the rocks. Try fishing shallow with crickets, worms or small jigs. From shore try Sailboat Harbor. 10 fish daily creel limit in PONDS. 
CHANNELCATFISH Excellent Sonny’s stink bait, Hoss’s Hawg Bait, leeches, night crawlers, and large minnows. Try the Waltonville Dam, Turnip Patch, Jackie Branch, and North Sandusky Day Use Area. Set line 3-4’ from the shore over rocks. Try leeches in moving water.  Drift fish the flats. 6 fish daily creel limit in PONDS.Jugs must be attended at all times while fishing.
WHITE BASS Fair Jig and curly tail grubs, inline spinners. Fish in shallow bays near brush cover and bushes. Fish around along the rocks and dropoffs. Reports of fish being caught around  the 154 bridges. 20 fish creel limit.No more than 3 fish 17” or longer daily
Information as of:  08/8/2014LAKE LEVEL: 407.19     AVERAGE POOL FOR THIS DATE: 405.97    WATER TEMP:  79°F       3+ inches of rain fell last night

Use of a minnow seine, cast net, or shad scoop for bait collecting within 1000 yards downstream of the Rend Lake dam and spillway is prohibited.

Maps of the Fish Attractor tree locations along with GPS readings are available at the Rend Lake Corps of Engineers Project Office.  Contact Randy Cordray for more information at (618) 724-2493.  In order to maintain a cleaner recreation area, anglers and bow fishermen fishing below the dam are asked to return dead

Youth Hunt Dates from Chris Young, IL DNR

The 2014 Illinois Youth Firearm Deer Hunt is Oct. 11-13 for those hunters with a valid Youth Deer Permit who have not reached their 16th birthday by the first day of the hunt.  Youth Deer Permits are available over-the-counter at license vendors throughout the state.  Hunters may purchase only one permit (either-sex) for one of the open counties.

Last year, Governor Pat Quinn signed into law legislation extending the Illinois Youth Firearm Deer Hunt from a two-day to a three-day season, providing an additional hunting day on the Columbus Day holiday.

All youth hunters must have a current, valid Youth Deer Permit and have a regular hunting license, Youth Hunting License or Apprentice Hunting License, unless exempt.  If using a regular hunting license, participants must have completed an IDNR-approved Hunter Education course. Each hunter participating in the Youth Deer Hunt while using an Apprentice Hunting or Youth Hunting License must be accompanied by a non-hunting, validly-licensed (Illinois hunting license) parent, guardian or grandparent who is 21 years of age or older. All other hunters participating in the Youth Deer Hunt must each be accompanied by a non-hunting supervisor (parent, guardian or responsible adult) who has a valid Illinois hunting license or who has in his or her possession a valid Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card.  The non-hunting supervisor must wear the orange garments required of gun deer hunters (blaze orange cap and upper garment with a minimum of 400 square inches of solid blaze orange material), and must remain with the hunting youth. Each supervisor may only accompany a single youth at any given time during the hunt.

Shooting hours for firearm deer hunting in Illinois are one half-hour before sunrise to one half-hour after sunset.

All Illinois counties except Cook, DuPage and Lake Counties, and that portion of Kane County east of State Route 47 are open for the youth deer season.

Hunting hours are one-half hour before sunrise on to one-half hour after sunset on Oct. 11-13.  The bag limit is one deer per legally authorized permit.  All either-sex permits are subject to the following restrictions: no hunter, regardless of the quantity or type of permits in his/her possession, may harvest more than two (2) antlered deer during a year, including the youth, archery, muzzleloader and firearm seasons.

Successful hunters must register their harvest by 10 p.m. on the same calendar day the deer is taken by calling the toll-free telephone check-in system at 1-866-ILCHECK or by accessing the online check-in system at They will be provided with a confirmation number to verify that they checked in their harvest. This number must be written by the hunter on the temporary harvest tag (leg tag).

Youth hunters are reminded that archery deer season will be underway and archery hunters will be afield during the Oct. 11-13 youth hunt.  Archery deer hunters and all other hunters are reminded that they must comply with requirements to wear blaze orange the weekend of the youth deer hunt (except in counties closed to the youth deer season).

The IDNR-managed sites in the counties listed below are open to youth hunting during the Youth Deer Hunt.  Note that some of the IDNR sites allow participation in the Youth Deer Hunt only by site-specific permit. Contact the sites listed below for special site regulations:

Note: Crab Orchard, Dixon Springs, and Lake Le-Aqua-Na offer youth firearm hunts during the regular statewide firearm deer season and require a site specific firearm deer permit.

For more information on the Youth Deer Hunt in Illinois, check the IDNR website at

All Hunters Reminded of Blaze Orange Requirement during the Youth Hunt.

Lake Shelbyville Fishing Report by Steve Welch

The Corp is about done pulling the lake since we only need four more inches. The cooler weather this past week brought water temps down from 83 to 75 and on the overcast days it was tough to get the bite going especially the bigger fish. Every day we had full sun the bite would catch back on fire and we would limit out before noon every day. Dark days we were still cleaning about forty towards a three man limit so very close it just took all day rather than about three hours.

I am still fishing right above the thermocline at about 15-17 feet with a big minnow on a slip bobber rig. Most clients would comment these minnows are big enough to clean as they were at least four-inches long. These big minnows make a lot of commotion when we drift them over the top of the brush. Bass and crappie alike just hammer them.

I am fishing both brush and down trees and trying to fish banks with some wind on them to push the bait towards the trees. We catch about a dozen or so from each spot some times twice that many so plenty of action. Most days we are catching over a hundred crappie.

This summer pattern won't change for at least six weeks and the cooler weather we have been experiencing has kept the fish very active. Normally in August we have water temps hovering around 90 this year I have not seen anything above 83.

The extended forecast for August has cooler temps and drier so the bite will remain very good.  Nothing more fun than catching a ton of crappie in shorts and shirt sleeves.

Picture is of Tyler McKinney holding up a four man sixty fish limit caught with his brother Matt and their friend Scott Brown and myself  this past week.


Starved Rock State Park Trail Report from Kathy Casstevens - Starved Rock Lodge

Brandt Construction began work on a section of closed trail at Starved Rock on August 8th. Work will resume on Monday, August 11th. Work will also begin at the Riverside area to the boat ramp sometime next week. As pre -determined sections are cleared and inspected they will then be opened to park visitors.

Turtle Flambeau Flowage Fishing Report by Bobby Orr

Hi Don,  Walleye have been active in many areas. Weeds and shallows as well as wood and breaks to about 15 feet. Slip bobbers with leeches, crawlers and for me, mostly large fathead minnows. Also, 1/8 oz Jacks weedless jigs with those minnows.

Crappie and lots of them lately. 10 to 14 inches. All with slip bobbers and fathead minnows. If you can find woody or brushy structure in 10 feet or more, you will find the crappies.

Muskies have been on a weird bite. The feeding windows have not been too long but they have been good. There have been some big fish chasing lures and a few clients who had chances at some great fish. Most were let go short of the net. Top water baits have been good all day. Jerk baits like suicks have been good all day. Twitch baits like squirkos have been great and shallow running cranks have also been showing us fish.

Hope this helps your readers who come up to the Turtle Flambeau Flowage area in Mercer WI.

Bobby Orr

See Photo:   Matt Rafferty had a few days of fishing in the Turtle Flambeau Flowage by Mercer Wisconsin and sent in a photo of a nice smallmouth bass that he caught. Rafferty said, "5-14oz smallmouth caught on the Turtle flambeau flowage in the lake of the falls measured 20.5 inches  caught on a night crawler."

Boulder Junction Area report by Don Dziedzina

Todd Gessner of Todd Gessner Outdoors has not only been getting quite a few nice sized walleyes in Boulder Junction area lakes, he's also had his clients in the last week catch a 48 inch, 33.5 pound muskie and a 24 pound, 40 inch sturgeon

Lake of the Woods MN Fishing Report by Rachel Krohn

Scattered methods are working this week. Good reports down rigging and pulling spinners are filling limits with numbers of trophy walleye in the mix. Some resorts are headed north to Garden Island, West Bar, or Hay Island in 22-24 feet. Others are staying close to Lighthouse Gap in 14-20 feet. Hammered gold still the goto color for spinners tipped with a leech or crawler.

On the Rainy River, afternoon and evening fishing producing good limits. Walleye are in 15-17 feet using 1 oz jigs or spinners. Sturgeon numbers good just off currents near deep pockets and adjacent streams.

Up at the NW Angle pulling spinners working best in 22-30 near Little Oak or Four Blocks or Little Traverse in Ontario. Use gold or chartreuse tipped with crawlers. Muskie fishing still strong in Ontario waters near weed beds. Pink cowgirls having good reports in warm water during evening hours.

Rachel Krohn - Lake of the Woods MN Tourism

Niagara NY Area Fishing Reports by Bill Hilts Jr.

  1. Lake Ontario and tributaries – The good news is that Saturday and Sunday of this week there will be three different fishing derbies on the lake available for competition anglers to take advantage of. The bad news is that with the recent storm activity, the lake flipped and the near-shore fishing has done an about face. When things settle back down look for some mature kings showing up inside of 100 foot depths. Use meat or flasher fly to entice those fish to hit with an outside chance for a magnum spoon to work for you. Brown trout are also available inside of 60 feet when the waters return to normal, with smaller spoons your best bet for a hook-up. Most of the fishing for salmon and trout will be out deeper. Look for stable water conditions and pods of bait to set up with spoons or flasher-fly. One spot talked about was the area from the 30 to the 34 lines out deep for steelies. Fish the bait on your fish finder, which is usually in the top 60 feet of water. The Orleans County Derby continues through Sunday and the current Grand Prize leader was pegged at 27 pounds, 7 ounces, caught by Debbie Murphy of New Albany, Penn. Top Salmon Division fish is a 26 pounds, 13 ounce king reeled in by Bill Magee of Northwood, Ohio. Destiny Bickel of Burt is still leading the brown trout division with an 18 pound, 11 ounce Olcott fish. First place steelhead is Mike Schaeffer of Sligo, Penn. With a 14 pound, 1 ounce trout. Leading laker is a 17 pound, 6 ounce fish hauled in by David Johnson of Rochester. The Lake Ontario Counties trout and salmon derby kicks off on August 15 and runs through Labor Day. Nearly $60,000 in cash and prizes are up for grabs, including a $25,000 check for the biggest salmon overall. Check out for details. The Greater Niagara Fish Odyssey Derby starts on August 16 and runs through the 24th for salmon, trout, smallmouth bass, walleye and carp. Kids fish for free in a special Junior Division. Grand prize is $2,500 and all divisions are eligible with a special drawing at the awards ceremony. Check out for all of the details.
  2. Lower Niagara River – Bass action has been spotty in the lower river. It can be good one day, not so good the next. Use live bait or tubes in the river or on the bar area off the mouth of the river. Crabs will also work for you. For walleye, Capt. Steve Drabczyk of Drab6’s Charters has been pulling fish from the bar area around the green buoy marker, as well as some of the drifts in the river like Stella and Jackson. Three-way rigs with worm harnesses is his preferred technique, but he uses his trolling motor to increase his speed just a little bit to trigger fish strikes. Speaking of walleye, the Niagara River Anglers Association will be holding their lower river walleye contest on Saturday, August 23 and if you are going to be in that you better be in the Fish Odyssey Derby, too. There is a separate division for walleye in the contest.
  3. Upper Niagara River – Bass is still the hot bite around the river. All the traditional spots are holding fish and live bait like crabs and shiners lead the way of best baits to use. Worm harnesses will also catch a mix of fish, with an occasional walleye also showing up. You may be more likely to catch a sheepshead though. Strawberry Island is a popular spot as is the west river along the parkway. Reefs like Staley’s or deep holes like Thompson’s are good spots to target smallmouth with the latter a popular spot during the Fish Odyssey Derby due to its reputation for bigger fish. While largemouth bass is not part of the contest, you can be part of a state contest that will be run through Labor Day if you want to try and go for it. The IFISHNY Challenge is underway, helping to kick off a new Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife app for your smart phones. Catch the largest largemouth or striped bass between now and Labor Day and win a lifetime fishing license. It’s a little known fact that a state record largemouth was electro-shocked in the upper river a few years ago. Find out more info at

Bill Hilts, Jr. - Director, Outdoor Promotions
Niagara Tourism & Convention Corporation

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