Welcome to this week’s sprawling Midwest Fishing Report:
Most consistent action has been for boaters up the Calumet, Slez’s reported best from 105th to the Ford plant; South Side slips have had some good days for shore anglers finding any spot they can. Security varies in dealing with fishing private property around South Side slips. Steelworkers Park at 87th is public land.
Conditions vary from lake to lake, but there’s some fishable ice. Larry Green: He and Charlie Mack found fishable ice at Forest Preserves of Cook County over the weekend and caught largemouth bass. Ken “Husker” O’Malley: He hopes to be ice fishing by the weekend south of the city, where he found 4 inches of ice on shore, dropping to 2 inches.
Here’s the link for ice-fishing regulations for nearby public sites.
Arden Katz: Bluegills excellent at Nielsen’s with waxies or spikes, all up and down the water column, keep moving to find the active fish, front had 4 inches over weekend.
Most places run some version of $5 parking or patronize the establishment. Here are some known access points: Hermann’s Rest-A-While (Nielsen’s Channel), Granny’s Lakeside Diner at Spring Lake Marina, Choppers Bar and Grill (Channel), Sandbar Bar & Grille (Marie, $10 or patronize, park in back), Oak Park Lounge (Pistakee Bay) and Barnacle Bob’s (Marie).
GREEN LAKE, Wis.: Mike Norris: Puckaway has best ice fishing in the area, walleye and pike on west end; on Big Green, a few putting boats in and night trolling; 5 inches on top makes ice tricky on Little Green.
MAZONIA: Open for open-water or ice fishing.
MILLE LACS, Minn.: McQuoid’s: Walleye in 12-25 ft. on drop-offs; pike in bays dead-sticking; ice is 10-12 inches, a few resorts letting 1/2-ton pickups out, most only allowing machines out.
NORTHWEST INDIANA: Slez’s: The few trollers getting out catching a few coho and browns Gary Light and mouth of Ditch; steelhead in the tributaries slower than expected, need a fresh batch.
NORTHERN WISCONSIN: Kurt Justice: Very good ice fishing conditions, ice 10 to 12 inches, but truck travel not recommended; walleye are good to very good, mostly at dusk, but some 10 p.m. to midnight, best on weed edges in 8-12 ft. with some coming shallow as 6 at night; crappie (weed-related in 8-12 ft.), pike, largemouth and bluegill are good.