Perch reopened on Friday and that leads this sprawling raw-file Midwest Fishing Report, but it is summer and there’s plenty of other stuff.
That includes the occasional king salmon on the Illinois lakefront, such as the 17-plus-pound king pictured above caught on Andy Mikos’ boat, Bismarck, by his neighbor John Wendel.
The MFR for Chicago fishing appears in a condensed form Wednesdays on the Sun-Times newspaper outdoors page. The sprawling raw-file report is posted here online on the Sun-Times outdoors page.
Season in Illinois reopened Friday with some very good catches. CHICAGO: Main column this week is on fishing the Chicago lakefront and catching dozens of those 4- to 6-inch perch on Monday, keepers were tougher to find. Stacey Greene at Park Bait said perch are being caught all over Montrose, inside and outside of the harbor; better fishermen are catching jumbos and keepers, Shad Raps or soft shells are best for jumbos. Norm Stroz leads Perchapalooza, which Park Bait is running again this summer. Staff at Henry’s Sports and Bait said perch reports included Northerly Island, Museum Campus, DuSable, Diversey and 87th. WAUKEGAN: Lori Ralph at the Salmon Stop said shore fishing for perch slowed after the weekend. NORTHWEST INDIANA: Capt. Rich Sleziak at Slez’s Bait in Lake Station, Ind., texted that perch are still on the slow side, but not many are out trying for them. SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN: Staff at Tackle Haven in Benton Harbor, Mich., said perch, quality size, are good in 35-40 feet on the outside of the piers.
FROGGING IN ILLINOIS
Bullfrog season in Illinois is open. Daily bag is eight. Bullfrogs may be taken by hook and line, gig, pitchfork, spear, bow and arrow, hand, or landing net.
Largemouth bass action is the prime target now.
Pete Lamar sent this:
Hi Dale, I have fished some ponds and lakes in Kane County and the rain has done some good: I spent more time fishing and less time picking algae out of hooks and knots. Largemouths were feeding pretty well. I’ve also seen a lot of bullfrogs, even during daylight hours. Some breeding activity still taking place. Pete
AREA WATER LEVELS
Go to http://water.weather.gov//ahps2/index.php?wfo=lot to check area water levels and projection. To get to more specific gauges, even on creeks, in Illinois, go to http://waterdata.usgs.gov/il/nwis/current/?type=flow
Braidwood is open daily. Hours through July 16, close is 8:30 p.m.; from July 17-Aug. 13, close is 8 p.m.; from Aug. 14-Sept. 10, close is 7:30 p.m.; from Sept. 11-24, close is 7 p.m.; from Sept. 25-Oct. 7, close is 6:30 p.m.
Check with Jon Meder at Jon’s Bait Shop–(815) 237-2822–in South Wilmington.
CHAIN O’LAKES AREA
Staff at Triangle said bluegill are the top bite, under or near docks; walleye are hitting leeches around current/bridge areas; bass are up shallow; catfish are good.
For more info and lake updates, go to Fox Waterway Agency or call (847) 587-8540.
STRATTON LOCK: There are changes this year for the operation of the Stratton Lock at the Chain O’Lakes. Here is the word from the Fox Waterway Agency:
The Stratton Lock will open for the 2017 season on Wednesday, May 3. IDNR lock tenders will operate the Stratton Lock on Wednesdays and Sundays from 10:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m., and on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. until midnight through October 29. The lock will be closed on Mondays and Tuesdays (with the exception of holidays) for the 2017 season. The Stratton Lock is also closed for the winter season each year from Nov. 1 through April 30. https://www.dnr.illinois.gov/WaterResources/Pages/StrattonLockandDam.aspx
Capt. Pat Harrison of Pat Harrison Outdoors sent this:
It’s been a busy two weeks sorry I missed a report last week. Weather has been up and down as we all know. Surface temps have been up and down from 59 degrees to 68 degrees toss in some wind rain sun and heat to make things a bit different every trip. Two weeks back we had some Bass moving caught a few but we could hit some of them in the nose and they would not go. Flat lined some Shad Raps and Rapala’s for Lake Trout and had some takers up to about 7 lbs. Week Two started with having Dan Gapen the Original River Rat and Bobber Annie on the decks of the G3 Monday and Tuesday to film a Pan fish segment for an upcoming Tv Show. I will post the dates it will air. We spent 2 days catching some nice Gils Crappie and? White Bass? we slipped in some Bass and Cats to boot. It was interesting to fish with cameras microphones and underwater cameras watching the fight. It was a Fun time and they plan to come back in the fall and do another show this time Bass Trout Salmon and other species. The other 2 trips we caught a lot of pan fish but did find some Bass and a few Trout. I’ll post about this week in the next report the eater is a bit cooler less wind and less heat I am looking for to the fish settling down and coming out to play. The New G3 Angler 19 sure helps with having 3 and 4 clients out with room to move. Boat also has a full Bimini top for rain or shine and full side curtains for when the weather starts to change. Have a Great week catch some fish.
DELAVAN/LAKE GENEVA AREA, WISCONSIN
GENEVA: Dave Duwe emailed this:
Lake Geneva Fishing Report 6/19/17 through 6/25/19 Lake Geneva has been improving with the warm weather. The largemouth bass and rock bass are the best fishing opportunities currently. Largemouth bass fishing has been excellent. The best location has been by Trinkes or by Covenant Harbor Bible Camp. The best presentation has been drop shotting 4 inch finesse worms in green pumpkin or root beer color. The best depth has been 12-14 ft of water. Rock bass continue to be the most actively biting fish on the lake. They are being found throughout the whole lake with the best depth being in 12 ft of water. They can be caught on small white hair jigs or split shot rigged nightcrawlers. The biggest concentration has been by Belvidere Park. Smallmouth bass fishing has slowed with the warmer water temperature. The fish have no become scattered. The best depth has been 15-17 ft of water. Look for the fish by Elgin Club or by the 700 club. The best approach is a football head jig with a root beer trailer and slowing dragging it on bottom to imitate crayfish. Walleye action has been very good at night. The best success is trolling crank baits by Trinkes or the east shore of Willliams Bay. The best depth has been 12-15 ft of water. Fish are being caught on large Rapalas. Bluegill fishing has been excellent in 15-17 ft of water just on the outside of the weed edge. They can be caught on split shot rigged leaf worms. I’ve been catching the most by Knollwood or Gage marine. Northern pike action is still slow. With the warming weather the thermocline bite will start in the next few weeks. July 4th is typically the start of northern pike fishing. If the weather holds that should be the case this year as well. Good luck and I hope to see you on the water. For guide parties, please call Dave Duwe at 262-728-8063
DELAVAN: Dave Duwe sent this:
Delavan Lake Fishing Report 6/18/17 through 6/25/17 With the stable hot weather patterns, the lake has hit it’s normal summer patterns. The fish are moving out of the shallow water and positioning themselves on the deep weedlines. Northern Pike action has been improving with every warm day. The best location has been in the 15-17 ft depth range. I’m catching the fish right on the weed edge with medium suckers fished on a lindy rig. The best locations have been on the north shore by the old Boys Scout Camp or by Willow Point. Some of the fish last week were over 30 inches. Bluegill action has been absolutely on fire. The fish are in 13-14 ft of water right in the weeds. It appears that the bigger fish are being caught on nightcrawlers but the most action is coming off of leaf worms. The best location has been by Browns Channel or by Willow Point. If the weather remains stable, they will go deeper in the coming week and then your fish finder will need to be used to find them. Crappie fishing has been average. The fish have been positioned in 14-15 ft of water and are suspended 5-6 ft off bottom. They can be caught on small plastics. The best color has been purple or chartreuse. Look for them by Belvidere Park or by Browns Channel. Walleyes have been showing up on the deep weedlines. The best presentation has been a lindy rigged leech. The bigger the leech the better the success. The best location for them has been just west of the Yacht Club on north shore or on the weed line by Viewcrest Channel. The average size to the fish has been 15-16 inches. The legal ones have been few and far between. Largemouth bass fishing has been good, the biggest problem has been finding the larger fish. There have been substantial numbers of 8-10 inch fish. The biggest fish I’ve been finding has been by the west end by Viewcrest. The best action has been coming a little shallower than normal in about 8-10 ft of water. I’m catching some on deep diving crank baits or split shot rigged nightcrawlers. Good luck and I hope to see you on the water. For guide parties, please call Dave Duwe at 262-728-8063
DES PLAINES RIVER
HENNEPIN-HOPPER: The lakes are open through Labor Day, Sept. 4. Fishing is closed on Mondays other than Labor Day. Click here for complete list of regs and details. POWERTON: Boat and shore fishing is open. Hours are 6 a.m.-8 p.m. LAKE OF EGYPT/REND LAKE: Check with Jason Johns of Boneyard Fishing. LAKE SHELBYVILLE: Check with Ken Wilson of Ken Wilson Guide Service. EVERGREEN LAKE: Will find out about bait shop and boat rental hours.
FOX RIVER: WESTERN SUBURBS
Pete Lamar noted that the river is in relatively clear conditions and good for wading.
FOX RIVER: WISCONSIN
GREEN BAY/STURGEON BAY
Lance LaVineat Howie’s Tackle in Sturgeon Bay sent this:
Good morning…here is the updated fish report The fishing out on the Lake has been going quite well as of late, basically from the Algoma area all the way north now to Washington Island. Obviously some days are better than others, but overall very good. It has been a nice mix of Kings, Rainbows, some Coho and some Lake Trout and the best depth has been in that 100 foot of water out to that 175 foot range. A mix of spoons and Howie Flies have been the best. Walleye fishing has been going ok during the day down south around the Chaudoir’s Dock area and south to the bottom of the bay of Green Bay. Flicker Shads and minnows, Storm smash shads and crawler harnesses have been the best. There is still some pretty good night trolling going on too. From Chaudoir’s Dock north up past the Old Stone Quarry in that 10 to 20 foot range has been the best. At night, suspending crank baits like Rogues, Husky jerks and Bandits all working well. Perch fishing has been getting better and better as we move through June and the weeds start to grow. Some areas that have been good are…Little Sturgeon, Riley’s Bay, Sawyer Harbor, Sturgeon Bay and some deep water mud areas from Chaudoir’s Dock north to Henderson’s Point. Fathead minnows, crawler pieces and leaf worms have been good. Bass fishing continues to stay hot throughout the county especially from the Sturgeon Bay area north to Sister bay. 8 to 12 feet of water seems to be the best depth. Tubes, paddle tails, Kalins grubs, Ned worms, Flukes and some spinner baits are working Lance LaVine Howie’s Tackle 1309 Green Bay Rd Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235 Ph: 920-746-9916
The Wisconsin DNR report is usually posted Tuesdays and includes reports from both the bay and lake sides.
It is open daily 6 a.m. (6:30 shore side) to sunset.
B & B Live Bait–(815) 433-0432–is open in Ottawa, as is Cajun’s in Utica.
INDIANA STREAMS (LAKE MICHIGAN TRIBUTARIES)
Access points for Trail Creek can be found on the Trail Creek Access Map. Access points for Little Cal and Salt Creek, which are closer to Chicago than Trail Creek, may be found at littlecal_saltcreek_access.
Norm Minas sent this:
This one is simple , the river is blown out and unwadeable . Chatterbaits with a gator tail style plastic trailer cut to fit . Fish the flooded waterwillows and catch smallmouth . It’s getting to the point though that safe and fishable spots are getting harder to find due to the ever increasing flow of water pushing the hard flow right up to shore . No way, I would even think about getting in the water anywhere I fished today . If this keeps up I getting out the punch bait and cut bait and fishing slack areas for cats . I fished chatterbaits thru those areas and all I caught was cats . River is still blown out below the IQ , above the IQ did not come up much if any . Trip 1 , below the IQ , punchbait under a float in slackwater areas . I used the float account very snaggy bottom to catch some channel catfish . Short trip . Trip 2 , above the IQ . For the most part Bandit 200 on seams , buzzbait ahead and below riffles was working for smallmouth . I also picked up a couple burning a blade bait below a small dam . peacenorm
To translate Norm, IQ is the Iroquois River. It flows into the Kankakee at Aroma Park and he is right it makes a big difference. Upstream of Aroma Park the river is closer to normal.
See perch reports at top.
CHICAGO: Stacey Greene at Park Bait said other species, especially rock bass and drum, are being caught, too.
Andy Mikos, who sent the photo at the top, sent this note on salmon fishing:
My neighbor John Wendel caught this king on my boat today. It was just shy of 18 pounds. We were fishing in 60 feet of water East of Evanston. We had 3 people on board . We had our 15 fish limit by 8:30 and shook off 2 while pulling lines. Fishings is hot right now. It was a stocked fish and all fish were loaded with alewives. I hope you and your family are doing well. Cheers – Andy Mikos
The rest of their catch was coho.
Capt. Bob Poteshman of Confusion Charters said coho are doing pretty in 50-80 feet off Navy Pier, by the Wreck or R4, some lakers, couple steelhead and kings, too.
WAUKEGAN:Lori Ralph at the Salmon Stop texted:
I was catching perch and rock bass off the gov pier Sunday, some keepers, Monday and today nothing. Boats for salmon has been 40 to 70 foot or so, along the shoreline
Ted Boska emailed:
Hello and good evening Dale.Hot coho fishing continues. Best early morning around 85 to 110 feet of water. This weekend I fish with my son for father day. We caught 2 nice king’s. If you are targeting the king’s everything is possible, coho is easy catch this time of year. Thanks Ted (die hard angler )BOSKA
NORTH POINT: Poteshman said there are still a lot of coho and a few kings, steelhead and lakers in 100-200 feet.
The cooling lake south of Seneca is open daily, 6 a.m. to sunset. Also, boaters should be aware that there will be no launching if wind is 14 mph or higher.
MADISON CHAIN, WISCONSIN
Check with Jon Meder at Jon’s Bait Shop–(815) 237-2822–in South Wilmington. Close is now 8:30 p.m.
MENOMINEE RIVER, WISCONSIN
Check with Mike Mladeik at Mike Mladenik Guide Service sent this:
Check the Wisconsin DNR Lake Michigan Report, which generally comes out Tuesdays for updates.
MINOCQUA: Kurt Justice of Kurt’s Island Sport Shop in Minocqua, Wis. sent this:
Enough with the rain already!Between bouts of more rain and some colder weather the fishing has held up reasonably well. A bit of a drop off in action, but still good.Largemouth Bass: Good – Wacky Worming best bet due to cooler weather. The top-water bite should return once weather warms. Shallow cranks and spinnerbaits good from late mornings on into the afternoons.Bluegill: Good – Thunderbugs best bet while they last! Worms, small leeches. Popper bite quiet with rain, cooler weather. Small wet flys popular as are small jigs tipped with waxies.Smallmouth Bass: Good – Shallow cranks (Shallow Shad Raps) and jerk baits (X-Raps, Husky Jerks) as well as tubes. Live baiters reporting good action on large leeches.Northern Pike: Good – Live bait (chubs/suckers) on weedless jigs or below floats. Spinnerbaits (Boonies), Chatterbaits and #3 or #4 Mepps. Shallow running cranks, just ticking week tops, also good.Yellow Perch: Good – Wood still best location, some as deep as 14-16’. ½ crawler, thunderbug or medium leech under slip-float. Nice big perch (9-11) with an occasional 12+ being caught.Walleye: Good-Fair – More lakes reported Hexagenia hatches (Mayflys) shutting down some good bites. As these clear and waters warm watch for return to shallower water to feed on small perch. #6 Shad Raps good choice in 7-10’ cabbage. Big leeches, crawlers, redtails (tough to get again with rain) also good. Fish scattered, search to find.Crappie: Fair – Scattered out over 8-14’ weeds. Small minnows best. A few reports of good catches of 10-11 Crappies using small beetle spins.Musky: Fair – Just not a lot a good reports at our shop so far. Best on bucktails, look for top-water to improve with warming temps.Despite wet conditions, some decent fishing. Water very high, changing fish locations, sometimes daily. Stable, warm weather would help.Kurt JusticeKurt’s Island Sport Shophttp://www.kurtsislandsports.comLike us on FaceBook
Fishing Report Panfish: Perch are in the weeds, so using a slip bobber tipped with minnows or tossing a 1/8th oz. jig with a small minnow seems to be doing the job. Crappies are done spawning now and are in the weeds and around structure. Slip bobber rigs with a hook and minnow or a jig and plastic should do the trick. Bluegills are up in the shallows on the warmer lakes; slip bobber rigs baited with red worms or waxies will catch these. Anglers should take notice panfish regulations on a few of the lakes in the area. Bass: Largemouth can be found in the shallow weeds and around docks; they will be caught using spinnerbaits. Smallies are in and around the rocks and can be caught by using small crankbaits and jerkbaits. Northern: These fish will be found in and around weeds. Pitching jig and minnows or small spinnerbaits will get their attention. Walleye: We are still pitching 1/8th oz. jigs tipped with fathead minnows or slip bobbers just over and around weeds. Try dragging crawlers or a leech on a Lindy rig. Muskies: Bucktails and jerkbaits are working, along with top water, to catch these fish. These types are your go to baits for a while now.
Capt. Rich Sleziak at Slez’s Bait in Lake Station, Ind., texted:
Coho with some steelhead and kings missed in in 60 to 100ft of water from east Chicago to Michigan city a lot of fish right now spoons and some dodgers and flys best baits Steelhead action at mouth of the ditch has been decent to great for boat and shore fisherman shrimp under floats and trolling j 13s and big orange red spoons same in Michigan city everyday is different but fish had daily Perch still on slow side but a few caught really not many people out for them Put in there for me dale celebrating 30 yrs open 5am to 8 pm all summer long come check me out Deep river and burns ditch giving up catfish on sonnys stink bait and cut skipjack A lot of the area lakes are getting really weedy so u will have to find pockets to fish but most area lakes giving up good bluegill
Remember he is at summer hours (5 a.m.-8 p.m.) until Labor Day.
LAKER REMINDER: Indiana now has a daily bag of three lake trout on Lake Michigan, to match Michigan. Illinois’ daily bag remains at two.
ROCK RIVER, WISCONSIN
ROOT RIVER, WISCONSIN
The Wisconsin DNR Lake Michigan Report is generally posted on Tuesday and includes a Root river section. Click here for the stream flow update, which can be really important for how good the fishing is.
ST. JOSEPH, MICHIGAN
See perch at the top. Staff at Tackle Haven in Benton Harbor said coho, steelhead and some kings are being caught in 100-150 feet, some steelhead are being caught off the piers; walleye (and drum, smallmouth and catfish) are going in the river.
ST. JOSEPH RIVER, INDIANA
Click herefor reports from the Indiana DNR.
Lake hours are 6 a.m.-10 p.m.
Here are the hours for Lakeside for the next few months:
Shabbona Lakeside is now OPEN for the SEASON Lakeside will be open everyday, 7 days a week, April 11th to September 5th 6 AM to 7 PM September 6th to September 30th 6 AM to 6:30 PM October 1st to October 10th 6:30 AM to 6 PM October 11th to October 31st 7 AM to 5PM
For more information and reports from Lakeside, go to shabbonalake.com or call (815) 824-2581.
SOUTHEAST WISCONSIN LAKEFRONT
The Wisconsin DNR posts a report during open water at http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/fishing/lakemichigan/OutdoorReport.html. It is usually posted by Tuesday afternoon. Streadsm flow info is at http://waterdata.usgs.gov/wi/nwis/current?type=flow.
WOLF RIVER, WISCONSIN