Perch, summer (kinda) & receding waters (mostly): Chicago fishing

SHARE Perch, summer (kinda) & receding waters (mostly): Chicago fishing

Improving perch fishing, a belated trend toward summer fishing patterns and waters starting to recede dominate this sprawling raw-file Midwest Fishing Report.

Stacey GreeneatPark Bait sent the photo above of perch from Montrost.

The MFR appears in a much condensed form Wednesdays on the Sun-Times outdoors page.


CHICAGO:Stacey GreeneatPark Bait said, “Today [Tuesday] everybody has a nice handful’’ at Montrose, also good shore catches at Navy Pier; soft shells have been better than minnows. WAUKEGAN:Lori Ralphat the Salmon Stop said that some were caughtoff the end of Government pier on small roaches or large fatheads; boaters taking some off Great Lakes near the buoys, others in 60 feet. SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN:Staff atTackle Havensaid there were some perch being caught south of St. Joseph in 30-40 ft. toward the Chalets


Bluegill bedding or coming off it, lead the fishing on most area lakes.

Then there is bass fishing, as Johnny “Sunshine” Pajak indicated with this report from DuPage County lakes.

Dale, Was able to get out finally on the local lakes here this weekend. The largemouth were very active on senkos,fished on the edges of the weeds in the evening. Hope all is well. Johnny Sunshine

All is well, more or less, on the home front, what hasn’t floated away.

Ken “Husker” O’Malleysent this:

Hey Dale, Bass continue to be good on area lakes. Bigger bass are very shallow mornings and evenings. A stealth approve is a must. Four and a quarter inch senkos pitched to cruising bass in the mornings , while crankbaits (baby one minus) pitched to ambush points in the evening have produced quality bass. — Ken Husker O’Malley Huskeroutdoors Waterworks fishing team


Probably another week when it is good to check on water levels and flow. Go to to check area water levels and projection. To get to more specific gauges, even on creeks, in Illinois, go to


Hooksetter’s Guide Service sent this:

(Head): Musky, walleye, smallmouth bass, panfish and catfish all hitting; all in and amidst the lakes and the Wisconsin River in Wisconsin’s Marathon and Lincoln Counties (near Mosinee and Wausau). Water temperatures in central Wisconsin continue to stay in that low 70 degree range, combined with normal water levels and good current it is making for great fishing opportunities on the Wisconsin River system. Musky action continues to be outstanding with several very nice fish being caught like the giant by Adam Rasmussen of Hooksetters Guide Service. This monster came in at just under 49 inches and had a 24 inch girth. Most of the action has been by running bucktails or top water baits in shallow water with less than 5 feet of water. Smallmouth bass have been quite aggressive with the warm temperatures. Most of the action has been by casting small crankbaits but the top water bite is coming on strong. Most of the action is in less than 3 feet of water. The walleye bite has been very good this past week with a lot of nice fish coming from the Wisconsin River system. A lot of these fish have been related to deep submerged timber in 8 to 12 feet of water. For you Panfish guys and gals the action this past week has been pretty good for both crappies and bluegills. Most of the fish are holding in submerged wood or in weeds in 4 to 8 feet of water. If you like action the catfish bite has picked up drastically. With the warming water temperatures their metabolism has really turned them on. Search out the deepest holes in the river and run a simple hook and sinker with a crawler or minnow right on the bottom. It’s that simple and that’s really all you need for some great catfish action.


Dean Rosset of the Chicagoland Muskie Hunters chapter of Muskies Inc. relayed multiple reports of active muskie, seen and caught.Art FrisellatTriangle said that bluegill are best around shoreline piers and laydowns with ice jigs and waxies under small floats; catfishing is good on stinkbait or crawlers; for walleye, work main lake current areas in 8-12 feet with leeches or crawlers.

Check Chain updates at Fox Waterway Agency or by calling (847) 587-8540.

For more reports, see


No update.


LaSALLE:Remember the new regs that the wind must be 12 mph or less and often a late opener for boaters on the weekend (many complaints). Hours are 6 a.m. to sunset daily. There is a concessionaire with bait and food options. HEIDECKE:Launch opens 6 a.m., shore fishing at 6:30 a.m.; close is sunset.BRAIDWOOD:Lake is open daily 6 a.m.-sunset.MAZONIA: Lakes are open daily 6 a.m.-sunset.


GENEVA:Arden Katzsaid that smallmouth and largemouth are good in 12-17 feet on 4-inch drop-shot worms; rock bass good in same area days on jigs and spikes.

Dave sent this:

Lake Geneva Fishing Report 6/29/15 through 7/5/15 Fishing on Lake Geneva has been the best it’s been in the last five years. The bass, both largemouth and smallmouth are still shallow and available for the catch. Smallmouth bass are being caught on split shot rigged nightcrawlers or Texas rigged plastic worms in green pumpkin color. Look for the fish in 10-12 ft of water. They can be found near Colemans Point, Knollwood or the South Shore Club. This bite is very short lived and in the next few days to a week the fish will start to move deeper. Largemouth bass remain near their spawning flats. The best location has been by Trinkes and Geneva Bay. Most of the fish are in 10-12 ft of water. They can be caught on split shot rigged nightcrawlers or split shot rigged green pumpkin worms. Pan fish have been biting in the 8-10 ft depth range. The best location has been by Knollwood or the Duck Hole. Try using leaf worms fished straight beneath the boat. You want to position the bait 12-18 inches above the weeds. Northern Pike action has not materialized yet. The thermocline has not yet formed, hopefully it forms in the next 10 days to 2 weeks. A few are being caught in the 15-20 ft depth range on lindy rigged suckers. Look for them just west of Cedar Point. Rock bass fishing remains excellent. They are located throughout the lake in 10-12 ft of water. The best approach is split shot rigged nightcrawlers. There is no limit so keep as many as you want. Lake Trout fishing remains very consistent. The best depth is 130 ft of water. Troll Chrome/Blue or Chrome/Green spoons. The best time of day is between 8 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. Look for them between Conference and Cedar Point. Good luck and I hope to see you on the water. For guide parties, please call Dave Duwe at 608-883-2050

DELAVAN:Dave sent this:

Delavan Lake fishing Report 6/28/15 through 7/5/15 Fishing on Delavan Lake continues to be outstanding. The bass, walleye and northern are all biting well. This should continue as long as the stable weather continues. Walleyes are located in 22-24 ft of water off main lake points. They are aggressively hitting jigging Rapala’s or ¼ oz Echo tails. Fire Tiger and Pearl are the best colors. The best location I’ve found is by Willow Point or the island. Largemouth bass fishing has been fantastic. They are on the weed line in 15-17 ft of water. They can be caught on a split shot rigged nightcrawler or a black & blue Chatter bait. Look for the fish just west of the Yacht Club, by the island or by the Village Supper Club. If a weather front or substantial amount of rain, the fish move from the weed line to 6-8 ft of water. If they are shallow, they can be caught on Thill slip bobbers and a medium sucker. When shallow, look for them by the Oriental boat house or by Delavan Lake Marina. Smallmouth bass fishing has been spotty. Most of the fish I’ve been catching are in 22-24 ft of water. They are way off the weed line and aggressively hitting medium suckers or lindy rigged nightcrawlers. Look for the fish west of the Yacht Club or by Belvidere Park. Northern Pike fishing has been okay. Most of the fish I’ve found have been off the weed line in 22-25 ft of water. They are biting medium suckers on lindy rigs 1-2 ft off bottom. Fish for them by the gray condos or by Delavan Lake Marina. Bluegill fishing has been very good in 12-14 ft of water. They are being caught just east of the Oriental boat house or by the Yacht Club. The best approach is leaf worms, straight lined beneath the boat. The average size has been around 8 inches with the bigger fish being slightly deeper. Crappie fishing has been relatively slow. Most of the action has been coming in the weeds in 10-12 ft of water. The best action is by Belvidere Park and Browns channel. Try fishing for them with small purple or chartreuse plastics. You want to cast with a slow retrieve with many pauses. Good luck and I hope to see you on the water. For guide parties, please call Dave Duwe at 608-883-2050


No report this week.


SHELBYVILLE:Ken WilsonofKen Wilson Guide Service said the water should crest at 610. So adjust for high water, but fishing is good. As of Tuesday, launches were open. Crappie are good on trolled crankbaits in 22 feet; white bass very good. He said you just need to adjust for the higher water and do such things as add more weight when trolling. LAKE OF EGYPT/REND LAKE:Jason JohnsofBoneyard Fishing said even with high water, “catfish are going nuts, . . . as many channels as you want’’ on dip bait, cutbait or crawlers; crappie on main lake points on Rend in 10-15 feet on minnow and jig; night bass fishing is on. EVERGREEN:Mike Steffasent a note that the road is completely open now. He also sent this basic info:

Bait Shop: Monday – Thursday from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. & Friday – Sunday from 6 a.m. – 4 p.m. Boat Rental: Open ONLY Friday – Sunday from 6:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Expanded Hours Beginning Memorial Day Weekend! Thank you, Mike

POWERTON:Both shore and boat fishing are open. Hours are 6 a.m.-8 p.m.HENNEPIN-HOPPER:Lakes will reopen this year at an undecided date.EMIQUON:Call (309)547-2730.


No update.


Water levels are the best of area rivers on the Fox.


Lance LaVineatHowie’s Tackle in Sturgeon Bay sent this:

Good morning all Here is the updated fish report for Monday June 29, 2015. Sorry it is short and sweet, but things are rockin and rollin around here Fishing out on the Big Lake has been going quite well, basically from Bailey’s Harbor and south to Algoma. We also have had some scattered reports coming in from the Gill Rock area and Washington Island…that report will get better after the 4th of July when more people start to head up there. The best depths have been as shallow as 70 feet out to 140 feet for the Kings. Flasher and Howie Fly combinations along with an assortment of spoons working well right now. Some fishermen are heading out to deeper water after the morning King bite slows, like out to 300-550 plus feet and finding some very good Rainbow action out there. Bright colored Mauler spoons have been the best fishing in the top 30 foot of the water column Bass fishing has been excellent in the northern part of Door County, from Egg Harbor north to Sister Bay. The best depth has been less than 15 feet of water including all of the off shore islands. Tubes, Kalins Grubs, Flukes, Drop Shot plastics and Senko style baits have been the best. The top water bite is also going pretty good on those calm mornings and afternoons Walleye fishing has been ok during the day down south around the Chaudoir’s Dock area. Flicker Shads and minnows along with crawler harnesses trolled in 15 to 25 feet of water has been the best. Soon, look for the action to get rolling on the off shore reefs like Larsons Reef, Monument Shoals along with the Northern Door County islands and shoals Thanks; Lance LaVine Howie’s Tackle 1309 Green Bay Rd Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235 Ph: 920-746-9916

The Wisconsin DNR posts a report, typically updated on Tuesdays at


River remains in flood, significant flood in spots, and will be for awhile.

Illinois Valley Outdoors  is open in Spring Valley with basics, including bait, crankbaits and plastics.  The phone is (815) 663-1000.


The Fourth of July typically signals steelhead time, but this is a different year. Water is raging and only a few fish are being passed at the barrier on Trail. Access points for Trail Creek can be found on the Trail Creek Access Map.


The river is in flood, to remain that way. But it is dropping.

Norm Minas’latest advice considering the conditions:

I’m feeling like a broken record, river still flooded and it’s raining. I’m not sure if I think it’s still raining or it’s raining again, but I am thinking I can do without rain for a good long while. I’m jonesing for low water and low water techniques. Knowing what to do in high water is one thing, getting to practice it continually is getting old . I’m not complaining about catching fish, I’d just like something completely different in conditions . Last few trips, I’ve been working on improving with the jig/pig . It’s one technique I know that works in rivers but I’m not as good at it as I’d like to be. I’ve been concentrating on flooded cover both natural and manmade . I’ve also been fishing inflows, both natural and manmade. The inflows range from intermittent ditches to major creeks . Mostly smallmouth bass, decent numbers with some really nice ones . Some channel cats , mostly the 2-3 lb eaters, couple nicer ones . Regardless of species they like it dropped, lifted, dropped, lifted, dropped as close to the straight up and down as possible. Some have taken it when it breaks free from temporary snaggings. Using a heavier jig helps keep it vertical as possible and I suspect the extra thump doesn’t hurt . I am primarily using football heads and tipping with plastic craws that have a thicker ridge on the outside of the claws . Buy bug spray in quantity and use liberally , the skeeters are horrible . Peace Norm

He is not kidding about that bug spray stuff. They are out in force in the Kankakee Valley.


Prospects look good for walleye and perch this year; smallmouth fair but improving. Click here for update. The Ohio DNR has general Lake Erie info and a fishing report.


No update.


For perch see, top.CHICAGO:Lots of quality drum around harbors.Capt. Bob PoteshmanofConfusion Charters said there is a good band of coho east of McCormick Place in 70 feet; lakers are better some days deeper. WAUKEGAN: Lori Ralphat the Salmon Stop said that coho, browns and a few kings are being caught early in 30-65 feet, later in 90-130 feet (lakers mixed in deeper). NORTH POINT:Poteshman said most action is on the hill, some days better on Wisconsin side; fish coming on all presentations; also good mixed bag in 250-270 feet.


Check reports from Gene DellingeratD&S Bait.


Mike MladenikatMike Mladenik Guide Service sent this:

Great topwater bite on the River The water temp is 71 degrees. Smallmouth are scattered and are hitting poppers. You need to fish the poppers SLOW.(Patience) Fast moving topwater baits have not been productive.


MINOCQUA:Kurt JusticeofKurt’s Island Sport Shop sent this:

Finally, area lakes are seeing temperatures in the low 70’s, giving Largemouth Bass and Bluegill anglers what they have been looking for! A few mayfly hatches have been reported lately and when they have been, they are coming in small patches, not entire lakes worth. With this food source out of the way, walleyes should be a bit easier to figure out. Bluegills: Good-Very good. The warm weather has brought gills in the shallows. A few warm/calm days gave anglers a chance to use poppers to get some great top-water fun. Otherwise use thunderbugs, wax worms and small leeches. Work the shallows and watch for beds…don’t take too many…leave some for seed. Largemouth Bass: Good-Very good. Lots of action and a variety of techniques working. Lots of good heavy weed techniques using plastic craws or bugs. Punching into the thick cover using heavy weights to fish Wooly Bugs and Sweet Beavers. Top water with plastic frogs and popper lures. Shallow square lipped cranks and spinnerbaits over 8’ cabbage beds simple and easy. Smallmouth Bass: Good-Very Good. Just off first breaks and along rocky drop offs. Work plastic craws and creature baits. X-raps early morning for cruising fish, chug bugs and x-rap pops in the evening for top water action. Live leeches hard to resist. Perch: Good-Very good. Liking the rise in temps, perch are feeding on crayfish. Deep wood best, but, sandgrass flats also holding these crab eaters. Use soft shells where available, otherwise ½ crawlers on 1/8oz jigs or dangled below slip-floats. Musky: Good-Very good. Despite a few draw back on the bright clear days, evenings have been good on bucktails and top waters (Pacemakers and Whopper Ploppers). Shallow water 2-12’ still best. Walleye: Good. Watch the weather, when clouds move in so should you to 8-12’ cabbage flats. XL leeches on crawlers on 1/16 oz weedless jigs. Bright days, move out to deeper breaks of firm to soft transition or deep wood, crawlers especially good here where walleyes are found feeding on soft shelled craws. Crappies: Good. Best over deep, curly leaf cabbage beds of 10-16’. Work tickling weed tops with small Charlie Bees, or light plastic or hair jigs tipped with small minnows, waxies or 1 Gulp Alive minnows. Pike: Good. Taking back seat to Largemouth Bass, but, still active on spinnerbaits, chatterbaits and #3 Mepps Aglia and Comet spinners. Still getting fronts moving through, making it hard to get consistent patterns going at times, but, warmer water is really helping. Kurt Justice Kurt’s Island Sport Shop

EAGLE RIVER:This report came theEagle River Chamber of Commerce, based on Creative Brilliance interviews with Eagle River guides“Muskie Matt”of Wild Eagle Lodge,“Ranger Rick” Kruegerof Guide’s Choice Pro Shop,Mat Hegy; and Eagle River hunting enthusiast,Dan Anderson:

(Head): Mayfly hatch slowing fishing a bit, with walleye, northern, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, and panfish putting on a good bite, with musky fair; all in the Eagle River, Wisconsin area. Water temps in the Eagle River, Wisconsin area are hanging around the 70 degree mark. The Eagle River area is starting to get into a mayfly hatch. That means the panfish, walleye, etc. are gorging themselves on mayflies, and running a bit deeper. Gamefish like musky and northern are also following the panfish deeper. Fishing is still good, and the mayfly hatch generally lasts a week or so. So be prepared and be advised, but that doesn’t mean you won’t catch a good number of fish in the Eagle River area – -just a mite slower as far as action is concerned. We’ll keep you posted. WALLEYE: Fish mudflats in 15 feet of water or more. The walleye are tight to bottom. Use a jig and a minnow or leech. All day action, with peaks in the evening. Bite has been good. NORTHERN: Fish break edges and weed edges in 15 feet or less. Use a bass style spinner bait, small bucktail, minnow bait, or a northern sucker under a slip bobber. All day action and the bite is good. SMALLMOUTH BASS: Fish break edges in 20 feet of water or less over hardbottom areas. Use a plastic tube or crawfish, jig and a leech or minnow, or a Senko rigged wacky. All day action and the bite is good. LARGEMOUTH BASS: Largemouth’s are hanging near structure – -docks, weeds, drowned wood, and brush piles – – in 15 feet of water or less. Use a plastic rigged weedless, spinner bait, topwater like a Scum Frog or Bass Rat, or a Heddon Torpedo. All day action and the bite is good. PANFISH: The panfish are gorging themselves on mayflies in 15 feet of water or less in and around weeds, weed or break edges. The perch are tight to bottom, with the crappies and gills suspending up and down the water column. Use a crappie minnow, chunk of crawler, or a micro plastic on a jig or under a slip bobber. All day action and the bite is good. MUSKY: Fish break edges in 15 feet of water or less. The muskies have moved out a little deeper, because their food fish prey have done so, and the muskies follow their food sources. Use a small to medium sized bucktail, Bulldawg, or topwater. Standard retrieve. Remember to always do a figure 8 as your lure nears the boat. All day action, with peaks in the evening, and the bite is fair. FLY FISHING: With untold numbers of rushing streams, brooks and rivers, Eagle River provides wonderful opportunities for fly anglers of every ilk. And for the adventure of a lifetime go for gamefish with a fly rod on one of the Eagle River area’s hundreds of lakes- – like in musky and northern. The Eagle River Chamber of Commerce (contact information below) can put you in touch with guides who specialize in fly fishing and those guides will provide you with one of the great memories you’ll ever have.


Frank Lagodny reported excellent salmon action out of Hammond (I plan to get out with him tomorrow. Staff at Mik-Lurch said coho are being caught between the Gong and the Wreck; bluegill are back on beds at Willow Slough.


The Wisconsin DNR Root River Report is generally posted on Tuesday.


For perch, see top. Staff at Tackle Havensaidsome lakers are in 80 feet and deeper, some coho too, mainly south; there’s some steelhead in closer in 40-50 feet, also better south.


Click here for reports from the Indiana DNR.


Clint Sandsat Lakeside said muskies are the top bite; that includes 50-, 47 and 45-inchers in recent days; catfish are also good; largemouth are active in the weeds, one of the better topwater years; small walleye and smaller crappie (in the cribs) are also active.

Lakeside is open 6:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m.For more information and reports from Lakeside, or call (815) 824-2581.


The Wisconsin DNR report is at They are generally posted by Tuesday afternoon. Stream flow info is at


No update.


No update this week.

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