Chicago fishing, Midwest Fishing Report: Perch, smallmouth, lake trout, flatheads, walleye, bluegill

Once again summer is truly here and the variety of fishing around Chicago shows in this sprawling raw-file Midwest Fishing Report.

SHARE Chicago fishing, Midwest Fishing Report: Perch, smallmouth, lake trout, flatheads, walleye, bluegill
Lulu Zhang, newest member of Bridgeport Bass, on her first time bass fishing caught a good smallmouth bass from the Chicago River.

Lulu Zhang, newest member of Bridgeport Bass, on her first time bass fishing caught a good smallmouth bass from the Chicago River.

Provided by Jeff Nolan

Once again summer is truly here and the variety of fishing around Chicago shows in this sprawling raw-file Midwest Fishing Report.

Jeff Nolan emailed a report from the South Branch, which is in the Chicago River report; as well as the photo at the top and this:

Side note newest member of Bridgeport Bass Lulu Zhang first time bass fishing catches 16 inch Smallmouth. Sometimes having a beginner onyour boat and seeing their excitement when they catch a big fish is better than catching it yourself.

He’s got that last part right.

LAKEFRONT PERCH

There’s been some perch caught, especially early at Montrose, since perch season reopened Thursday, June 16, on Illinois’ Lake Michigan waters.

Jason “Special One” Le with a personal-best perch. Provided photo

Jason “Special One” Le with a personal-best perch.

Provided

Jason “Special One” Le texted the photo above and this on Sunday:

Happy Father’s Day Dale

Personal best 15 inch

1 lbs and 11 ounce

Stacey Greene at Park Bait at Montrose Harbor texted:

Good morning Dale,

Perch fishing has been great.I personally haven’t seen perch this big in quite a few years.I know Jason has probably sent you pictures. Most of the fish have been caught here at Montrose on the Lakeside. I have not had a Belmont report and the couple guys I know that have tried Diversey have said it’s slow.Softshell seems to be the best but they are also hitting on shiners as well as all the other standards, red worms, night crawlers, wax worms, spikes etc

Lori Ralph at the Salmon Stop in Waukegan said some perch off the pier and a few off the rocks and a few boaters tried for perch.

In Indiana, Capt. Rich Sleziak at Slez’s Bait in Lake Station texted:

Few perch around nothing crazy yet but some have been caught. Outside the mudd line at burns ditch and around dune state park building.

Baby roaches and regular crappie perch minnows are what you want to use.

In Michigan, staff at Tackle Haven in Benton Harbor said perching is picking up just south of St. Joseph in 40 feet.

LAKEFRONT PARKING

Chicago Park District’s parking passes for the fisherman’s parking lots at DuSable and Burnham harbors are on sale at Henry’s Sports and Bait in Bridgeport, Park Bait at Montrose Harbor, and the Northerly Island Visitor Center.

Readers suggest SpotHero app downtown. Otherwise, here are some basics: Foster (free street parking or pay lot); Montrose (now a mix of metered and free street parking); Belmont (pay lots on north and south sides); Diversey (pay lot or street parking); DuSable Harbor (pay lot or fisherman’s lot); Northerly Island/Burnham Harbor (meters, pay lot or fisherman’s lot); 31st/Burnham (meter parking between McCormick Place and 31st Street Harbor); Oakwood/39th (meters); 63rd Street/Casino Pier (pay lot); Steelworkers Park (free street parking at east end of 87th); Cal Park (free parking).

ILLINOIS FROG SEASON

Illinois’ bullfrog (only) season runs through Oct. 15. A fishing license is required. “Bullfrogs may be taken by hook and line, gig, pitchfork, spear, bow and arrow, hand, or landing net.” Daily bag limits eight, possession limit 16.

AREA LAKES

With the heat, I expect the action to be topwaters early and late for largemouth or bluegill in or around the weeds.

Chris “Silver” Conn Buchanan, who was practicing for a singing performance with Rob Abouchar, also landed a nice largemouth bass. Provided photo

Chris “Silver” Conn Buchanan, who was practicing for a singing performance with Rob Abouchar, also landed a nice largemouth bass.

Provided

Rob Abouchar emailed the photo above and this:

Hi Dale

The hotter the weather gets the bite keeps getting better.Last Wednesday as the temps soared before the thunderstorm the bass became very aggressive. I was catching some nice size bass on pink bubble gum senkos from the dock in the weeds and duckweed.After the rain the bite slowed a bit till the weekend.Island lake had it’s carp fest over the weekend and I tried corn leeches peas and worms but got no carp. I did get a nice Bullhead cat on a leech. I did see some carp that were taken and removed from the lake in a dumpster at the launch park.Sunday I had Chris Silver Conn Buchanan over for a little rehearsal as she will be joining us this Saturday for the show. We did some fishing from the dock. Silver who is visually impaired heard a bass splash in the duckweed.I threw at the splash and hooked up. I handed the rod to silver and she fought and landed a nice bass.

Next up on the music front is Saturday in mundelein at Tighthead brewing with the Conscious Rockers.The back up vocals are done by Joe The Grasseater Schatz and mixing is underway.Joe also got some nice t shirts for the band and for future sale. Living the dream!

I notice a lot of contributors are living some of the dream; there’s something about fishing.

Pete Lamar emailed:

Hi Dale,

This week was all about fishing during the short breaks in the extreme heat.I had a good afternoon for bluegills and bass once I understood how neutral/negative they were in the strong east winds and bluebird sky.Downsize the flies and a slow, almost stationary presentation produced fish.It’s hard to believe it was the same fish and same location from a week earlier when they would attack relentlessly.

. . .

Pete

BRAIDWOOD LAKE

District fisheries biologist Seth Love would like to hear from anglers on hybrid catches at Braidwood. You can email him at seth.love@illinois.gov.

Open daily 6 a.m.-sunset.

CHAIN O’LAKES AREA

Tucker Siminak at Triangle Sports and Marine in Antioch said bluegill are still spawning—``hard to get away from them’’—and are the top bite; lots of catfish on cutbait and stinkbait; bass are improving on topwaters or plastics on weed lines; crappie and walleye are moving out into the lakes; some white bass but slowed a little.

NOTE: Check updates on water conditions at foxwaterway.com or (847) 587-8540.

NOTE 2: The Stratton Lock and Dam has normal daily operating hours of 8 a.m. to midnight through Sept. 30.

CHICAGO RIVER

Jesse Gonzalez (left) and another die-hard carp angler, Travis, with good carp from the Chicago River. Provided by Jeffrey Williams

Jesse Gonzalez (left) and another die-hard carp angler, Travis, with good carp from the Chicago River.

Provided by Jeffrey Williams

Jeffrey Williams messaged the photos above and below, and this:

Carp still heavy on the river, including not 1 but 2 doubles with the Chicago Fishing Freaks, u meet awesome people down on the riverwalk

Guy in the Red his name is Travis and the one in the blue his name is Scott, both just like me and my brother are die-hard carp anglers and deserve alot of credit

Scott, another die-hard carp angler (left), and Jesse Gonzalez, with good carp from the Chicago River. Provided by Jeffrey Williams

Scott, another die-hard carp angler (left), and Jesse Gonzalez, with good carp from the Chicago River.

Provided by Jeffrey Williams

Monday afternoon he added:

another lil bit of a river report , crappies are slowly starting to bite

Jeff Nolan emailed the photo at the very top, the photo below, and this:

South Branch has come back strong lots of small to medium Bass mixed in crappie and bluegill mainstem very solid presence of smallmouth large mouth crappie bluegills

Side note newest member of Bridgeport Bass Lulu Zhang first time bass fishing catches 16 inch Smallmouth. Sometimes having a beginner onyour boat and seeing their excitement when they catch a big fish is better than catching it yourself.

Jeff Nolan with a nice smallmouth bass from the Chicago River. Provided photo

Jeff Nolan with a nice smallmouth bass from the Chicago River.

Provided

COOLING LAKES

Braidwood, LaSalle and Heidecke are open daily 6 a.m.-sunset.

DELAVAN LAKE, WISCONSIN

Capt. Dave Duwe emailed:

Delavan Lake 6/20/22 through 6/27/22

The first part of the week, we had some very hot temperatures which slowed fishing down for most species.

Northern Pike have been on fire. You should be able to get a bite on every sucker you put down. I usually only bring a dozen. Due to the hot temperatures outside, the bait won’t live too long so you need to be careful. Most of the pike are off the weedline now in 18-24 ft. I’m using lindy rigs fished 2 ft off bottom. The best location is by the gray condos or by Browns channel.

Largemouth bass have started to bite on the deep weedline. They just started to show up on Saturday of last week. This bite should remain constant for most of the summer now. Look for the fish in 15-20 ft of water. The best locations have been by Willow Point or by the Village Supper Club. Some of the bass I caught last week were over 6 lbs.

Most of the bluegills are out of the shallows now. I’m readily catching them now in 15-17 ft of water. Look for the fish by the Yacht Club or over by the island. The best presentation is straight lining the leaf worms underneath an anchored boat. They are about 6 inches to 1 ft off bottom. I caught one bluegill on Sunday that was 11 inches long. My client thought he had a small walleye.

Crappie fishing has been very slow. I haven’t been able to locate any. I fished for about an hour one day last week just outside the weedline in some of my favorite spots and only caught a couple bluegills. In a couple of weeks, the crappies should be on the outside of the weedline and suspended.

Walleye fishing has been all right. I’m catching a few every trip out. The best bait is lindy rigged nightcrawlers fished in about 18-19 ft of water. Chartreuse painted hooks seem to produce more bites for me. The Oriental boat house and Browns channel are always good bets.

Good luck and I hope to see you on the water. For guide parties, please call Dave Duwe at 608-883-2050

DES PLAINES RIVER

Ken ``Husker’’ O’Malley with largemouth bass from the Des Plaines River. Provided photo

Ken ``Husker’’ O’Malley with largemouth bass from the Des Plaines River.

Provided

Ken ``Husker’’ O’Malley emailed the photo above and this:

Hey Dale,

Here is a recap of this past weeks fishing.

DesPlaines River-water temps are 76-77 with backwater areas slightly warmer. Bass are good on a variety of presentation. Best bait has been a senko pitched the shoreline cover. Weed growth is behind but should get a good boost with this weeks weather.

. . .

TTYL

Ken Husker O’Malley

Husker Outdoors Waterwerks fishing team

DOWNSTATE

Victor Blackful with good crappie from Lake Shelbyville. Provided photo

Victor Blackful with good crappie from Lake Shelbyville.

Provided

SHELBYVILLE: Victor Blackful made the trip to Lake Shelbyville and emailed the photo above and this:

Good MorningDale

Glad you had a chance to get out this weekend. I spent my weekend on lake shelbyville and I must say it was interesting. I was fishing the spillway in search of catfish but no luck. The water was very low probably the lowest I have seen in years. It seem Gar were everywhere so if you were useing live bait you would have to fight through the Gar to find the other fish. I did see a few boaters land some nice Muskie. That said as the sun went down I decided to try a pink and white mister twister and some really big crappie came out to play. I will be going back in a few weeks but overall it was just good to be out on lake shelbyville again

For other information, check with Ken Wilson of Lithia Guide Service.

HENNEPIN-HOPPER: Open through Sept. 5. Closed Mondays, except for Memorial Day and July 4. Check regulations at http://www.wetlands-initiative.org/dixon-paddling-fishing.

POWERTON: Summer hours are 6 a.m.-8 p.m.

EMIQUON PRESERVE: Hours are sunrise to sunset. Access permits and liability waivers are required. They are available Tuesday to Saturday at Dickson Mounts Museum, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

SOUTHERN ILLINOIS: Check with Jason Johns of Boneyard Fishing.

DuPAGE RIVER

Rudy Radasevich with a good smallmouth bass from the DuPage River. Provided photo

Rudy Radasevich with a good smallmouth bass from the DuPage River.

Provided

Rudy Radasevich. tweeted the photo above and this Friday morning:

Dale, on my the way to the train this morning, my car suddenly turned at the river. Caught a few and was still at my desk by 7:00 — though it was my virtual desk back home instead of at the office. Sure beat sitting on the train! Have a good weekend. Rudy

That’s just doing it right on many levels.

FOX RIVER

Conner, Ramblin’ Ray Stevens’ son, continues to do well for smallmouth bass on the Fox River. Provided photo

Conner, Ramblin’ Ray Stevens’ son, continues to do well for smallmouth bass on the Fox River.

Provided

Long-time Chicago personalityRamblin’ Ray Stevensmessaged the photo above of his son Conner and this on Saturday:

Kids catches big Fox river smallies

Pete Lamar emailed the photo below and this:

Hi Dale,

This week was all about fishing during the short breaks in the extreme heat.

. . .

The smallmouth is from a Fox tributary caught yesterday morning shortly after dawn.Air temp was 62-on a day that would reach the 90s later-and the water was cool to the touch (I wet-waded). It looked as if it was going to be a quantity not quality day:a lot of small fish willing to hit and giving acrobatic displays when hooked.Then I saw a big silhouette materialize out of the slack water along the bank and attack the streamer as it drifted past.I didn’t think I got a good hookset and to make matters worse, my leader tapered down to 7 lb. fluorocarbon-I was expecting low and clear water, which turned out to not be the case, so the light line was unnecessary.I was prepared for the worst-a snapped tippet or a fly thrown on a jump, but the knots held and the hook stayed embedded.It was a 17 inch spawned-out female; she probably weighed close to four pounds a few weeks ago but is considerably lighter after dropping all those eggs.She’s likely recovering and gaining weight by eating all the tadpoles now present in the creek.

Pete

Big smallmouth bass on the fly from the Fox River. Provided photo

Big smallmouth bass on the fly from the Fox River.

Provided

GENEVA LAKE, WISCONSIN

Capt. Dave Duwe emailed:

Lake Geneva Fishing Reports 6/20/22 through 6/27/22

Lake Trout are biting in the main lake basin. Most of the fish are suspended off the bottom between 50 and 90 ft down in 115-130 ft of water. Most of the fish are caught at first light or right at dusk. With the longer days, you need to get up very early to get the best bite. Fish can be caught on nickel/green or nickel/blue spoons fished on down riggers. I’ve been trolling the spoons at 2 to 2 ½ mph.

Smallmouth bass have finished spawning and have moved out on the break lines. The best depth has been 12-18 ft of water. They can be caught on nightcrawlers fished on a split shot rig or drop shotting small finesse worms. My best success has come by Linn Pier or by Belvidere Park in Fontana. I’ve caught a lot of post spawn females in excess of 20 inches in the past few weeks. The smallmouth bass bite this spring has been one of the best in the past 3 years.

Rock bass remain everywhere on the lake. Lake Geneva is an awesome place to take a first time angler for a lot of action. The highest concentration of fish is from 10-12 ft of water. The bigger fish seem to be on the break line in 12-18 ft of water. My best location has been by Linn Pier by what is known as the duck hole. The best bait has been a split shot rigged nightcrawler. If you don’t want to spend a lot of money on live bait, white hair jigs have also been producing a lot of fish.

Largemouth bass have not moved to deep water yet. They are still in the weed flats. My best location has been by Trinkes or in Geneva Bay by the boat launch. The bass can be caught on split shot rigged nightcrawlers, wacky rigged Senkos or split shot rigged green pumpkin lizards. My biggest fish this past week was 4.3 lbs. caught in Trinkes bay. The next couple of weeks should be some of the best largemouth bass fishing shallow that Geneva has to offer.

Bluegills and Pumpkin Seeds have been sporadic. The biggest fish I’ve caught has been in Trinkes Bay in 12-13 ft of water. I’ve been catching the fish by accident on split shot rigged nightcrawlers. If you wanted to key on them, I would use leaf worms fished on a slip bobber while anchored. Some of the pumpkin seeds this past week were over 10 inches.

Perch still remain in the shallow waters. They are on the hard bottom near points. On Saturday last week, the average size was very good. There was one keeper per five small ones, which is pretty good for Lake Geneva. I’ve been catching them on nightcrawlers pieces fished on a Thill slip bobber or a split shot rig. hot.

Walleye fishing remains excellent. They are biting day and night. The best depth is 20 to 30 feet. Slowly trolling crawler harnesses seem to be the best method, Cisco beach or Maytag point.

Good luck and I hope to see you on the water. For guide parties, please call Dave Duwe at 608-883-2050

GREEN LAKE AREA, WISCONSIN

Mike Conlin, longest serving fisheries chief for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (Department of Conservation), on a recent outing with guide Mike Norris. Provided photo

Mike Conlin, longest serving fisheries chief for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (Department of Conservation), on a recent outing with guide Mike Norris.

Provided

Guide Mike Norris texted the photo above and emailed this:

Fishing Report – 6/19/2022

Mike Norris

Big Green Lake – Water temperature is 68 degrees, and all species of fish are biting right now.Both largemouth and smallmouth bass are shallow and chowing down on crustaceans.Crayfish imitating lures are your best bet.My choice is the Ned Rig.Also look along the end of piers for bedding bluegill then fish them with a jig and redworm suspended beneath a float.White bass remain active just outside the drop off at the Heidel Bar and near the inlet at the east end of the lake.Try spinners or curly tailed worms for the white bass.

Fox Lake – Fishing for largemouth bass slowed following the severe weather we experienced last week.Things are improving though.Walleye fishing is good.Try trolling crankbaits in the open basin or cast jig and twister tail combos in 5 to 12 feet of water just off the island.

To book me for a guide trip reach out to me via my Facebook page at mike.norris.7773 or email me through my website atwww.comecatchsmallmouth.com

GREEN/STURGEON BAYS, WISCONSIN

Click here for the Wisconsin DNR weekly report.

HEIDECKE LAKE

Open 6 a.m. (6:30 bank fishing) to sunset.

ILLINOIS RIVER

Brian Caunter at Henry’s Sports and Bait said customers are catching catfish.

KANKAKEE RIVER

See the Fish of the Week, a hefty flathead catfish, by clicking here.

George Peters with a smallmouth bass from the Kankakee River. Provided photo

George Peters with a smallmouth bass from the Kankakee River.

Provided

George Peters emailed the photo above and this:

Happy father’s day Dale! Kkk at normal summer level. Most baits working. Heat will turn water a brown stain but fish will bite mostly in fast water areas. G. Peters

Ken ``Husker’’ O’Malley emailed the photo below and this:

Hey Dale,

Here is a recap of this past weeks fishing.

. . .

Kankakee River-water temps are 81 with a slight stain and very good wading conditions.

Bass are very good on jerkbaits and craw imitators worked along current seams adjacent to flats.

Here is the nature pic of the week. A nighttime visitor.

TTYL

Ken Husker O’Malley

Husker Outdoors Waterwerks fishing team

Ken ``Husker’’ O’Malley with a smallmouth bass from the Kankakee River. Provided photo

Ken ``Husker’’ O’Malley with a smallmouth bass from the Kankakee River.

Provided

LAKE ERIE

Click here for the Ohio DNR Report.

LAKEFRONT

Andy Hansen with a good smallmouth bass on the Chicago lakefront, caught with James Baranski. Provided by James Baranski

Andy Hansen with a good smallmouth bass on the Chicago lakefront, caught with James Baranski.

Provided by James Baranski

James Baranski messaged the photo above and this on Thursday:

Hi Dale, went out wit Andy Hansen. Smallmouth report Lake Michigan Chicago. We worked areas that we heard decent smallies were hitting at Monroe and Dusable but all that were hitting were small males. It seemed most of the Smallies may be spawned out. Worked a few honey holes I have from the last few . years and we got about 25 with the largest 3.65 pounds. The bite was good till noon and quieted downI will say, I marked big smallmouth in 23 to 25 feet or water on my down imaging so that alone tells me most have dropped but my buddy saw a few stragglers in Indiana on the beds. They had similar results in the Hoosier territory. Seriously a fun time as the wolf pack was following our catches to the boat and we certainly saw some lunkers but they were not on the prowl. Conditions are similar to last year on the temps so the bite will be strong in July. Here are the highlights. Tight lines.

Brian Caunter at Henry’s Sports and Bait said smallmouth slowing down in the harbors as the transition comes to drum season (Henry’s should have crayfish this week); a few pike on top water in the harbors.

Stacey Greene at Park Bait at Montrose Harbor texted:

Good morning Dale,

Perch fishing has been great.I personally haven’t seen perch this big in quite a few years.I know Jason has probably sent you pictures. Most of the fish have been caught here at Montrose on the Lakeside. I have not had a Belmont report and the couple guys I know that have tried Diversey have said it’s slow.Softshell seems to be the best but they are also hitting on shiners as well as all the other standards, red worms, night crawlers, wax worms, spikes etc...

Still reports of some really nice small mouth being caught in and around the harbors mostly on artificial baits but there have been a few on crawlers and med. Golden shiners.Lots of sheephead on softshells.They are aggravating the perch fisherman lol.Also still some Trout here and there. All in all it’s pretty decent fishing finally.

Have a great week.

Capt. Bob Poteshman of Confusion Charters said that out of Chicago fishing is setting up better with decent lakers in 85-140 straight out of Chicago, better mornings; coho and “lots of bait” in 40-60, a steelhead here and there and a couple kings. Out of North Point, it’s mostly coho in 140-200 in front of North Point and north; some going out to 300.

Lori Ralph at the Salmon Stop in Waukegan said some perch off the pier and a few off the rocks and a few boaters tried for perch. Still some trout off the pier.

Capt. Scott Wolfe of School of Fish Charters emailed:

Hi Dale

The transition to a summer pattern was complete this week. Fishing was mostly very good but with the occasional terrible trip. Nearly all of the fish have moved out to at least 90 feet with many boats going to over 200 feet of water. I was between 130 and 175. Most of the fish are being taken 20 to 90 feet down in the water column. Switching winds and currents left us going to a different location every trip. It looks like this week may bring more stable weather.

Best setups have been Luhr Jensen 0 and Stubbie dodgers in red and in yellow with Aqua and green flies from Lake Michigan Angler, Jimmy Fly and Smokin Fish Tackle, run on divers, downrigger and leadcores. Warrior Lures standard size spoons in Blue Dolphin, Hey Babe and other blue-green patterns on copper line and downriggers have added kings, lakers and more coho to the catch of mostly coho. Slower presentations, slower speeds dominated this week for us, which is unusual as I troll faster than most boats typically.

I observed two things I think you would find interesting. The carp in the harbors are at the height of their spawn and extremely active. The big bass, mostly smallmouth, looked like they were hiding in the rocks in the rip-rap of the shore and breakwaters. At first I thought they were nesting, but there were no nests made and the areas were too shallow. It really looked like they were hiding from the carp. We usually see the big bass just cruising the harbor in open water.

Second, the stomach content of the fish was really interesting. We continue to see lots of gobies in addition to alewife. But now we are seeing lots of small alewife, not just the big mature ones. My boat partner counted a coho with 22 relatively fresh eaten alewife in it this week and many of the fish are loaded with them. I think it’s a good sign for the alewife population.

Capt. Scott Wolfe

schooloffishcharters.com

630-341-0550

Those last two paragraphs are something to consider.

This morning, he added the photo below and this :

Capt. Mike Fuys (my charter partner) celebrating his birthday with a nice bonus laker on a Warrior Blue Dolphin to go with a bunch of big coho.

Capt. Mike Fuys celebrating his birthday with a nice bonus laker to go with ``bunch of big coho.’’  Provided photo

Capt. Mike Fuys celebrating his birthday with a nice bonus laker to go with ``bunch of big coho.’’

Provided

LaSALLE LAKE

Site is open daily 6 a.m.-sunset. As a perched lake, boating is closed when winds top or will top 14 mph. Check daily updates on boating at (815) 640-8099.

MADISON LAKES, WISCONSIN

Click here for the update from D&S Bait, Tackle & Fly Shop .

MAZONIA

Hours are 6 a.m. to sunset.

MINNESOTA

Marie with a beautiful 24 3⁄4-inch walleye froom Mille Lacs. Provided by McQuoid’s Inn

Marie with a beautiful 24 3⁄4-inch walleye froom Mille Lacs.

Provided by McQuoid’s Inn

Justin Lederer emailed the photo above and this from McQuoid’s Inn in Isle, Minn.:

Justin Lederer checking in from McQuoids Inn Lake Mille lacs. The walleye bite has been heating up along with the weather. Slip bobbers and leech’s are still the go to 27-32 feet of water gravel beds and rock piles. The smallmouth are post spawn they haven’t moved far from the beds Ned’s tubes Alabama rigs. Also drag suckers around the rocks to fire them up. Stay cool this week.

NORTHERN WISCONSIN

Kurt Justice at Kurt’s Island Sport Shop in Minocqua emailed:

Following some cool mornings in the 40’s to keep lake surface temperatures down, a heat wave has moved up to the Northwoods pushing lake temps, and the activities that go with warmer water, up!Temps cresting into the nineties early in the week followed by highs in mid to upper 80’s will bring most surface temps into the 70’s.This will advance bug hatches and spawning activity from fish that haven’t yet.

Bluegill:Very Good – Lots of colonies of beds showing up.Anglers using poppers, as well as dry flys, having fun in the shallows.Tiny 1 tubes, Mini Mites and small leeches and worms hard for the little fighters to resist.It is up to us to resist taking too many of these fish.Concentrate on the fun and let these fish nest, reproduce and supply years of activity at this time.There are plenty of other times for harvest.

Largemouth Bass:Very Good-Good – The warming water is right up their alley.Activity best early and late in the day with weather like this.Twitchbaits, Sluggos, pre-rigs and 3 swimbaits in the shallows as well as top-water lures.Mid-morning through the afternoons go with Wacky Worms, Ned rigs and Tokyo rigs to get into the weed cover.

Smallmouth Bass:Good-Very Good – Surprisingly there were still some nesters on the larger lakes over the weekend.This could change quick with heat.Ned rigs, Wackys and tubes are tops.Jerkbaits and shallow cranks in the early AM, then outside weed edges after that.

Yellow Perch:Good – Action in weeds on beaver tails and medium leeches.Schooling up a bit, but never tight in shallower cover.Signs of molting craws means Perch taking advantage of small crayfish and dragonfly larvae.

Musky:Good – Actually, very good if you’re 15 yr old Kaiden Schrieber of Naperville who boated a 50 beauty on the Flambeau Chain over the weekend.Not saying which lake or what on, and usually don’t mention angler’s name – but C’MON, THAT’S A BEAST!Other reports from anglers moving fish in the evenings on top-water.Action good, tough to see follows with all the recent wind.Bucktails tops!

Walleye:Good-Fair – Bite was good when you found schools but starting to see it fade as waters move into low 70’s.Oddly, some of the best action coming late morning to early afternoon.Wind blown weed edges best using leeches, crawlers coming into play.

Northern Pike:Good-Fair – Pike action is slower than expected.4 swimbaits, ¼ oz spinnerbaits over cabbage in 7-12’.Jigging chubs for Walleye in weeds is picking up an occasional Pike.

Crappie:Fair – Could have been the wind, but fewer reports of late.Just tough to pick up these light biters on windy days.

While some March Brown mayfly hatches have been noted, the big Evil Hexagenia hatches are still on their way.A few skins have shown so far.Rising water temps could speed up this hatch and make for a few miserable days on your favorite lake.Dragonflies are hatching, that and the wind is helping to make what was a bad mosquito season more bearable.

Kurt Justice

Kurt’s Island Sport Shop - Like us on Facebook

NORTHWEST INDIANA

Capt. Ed Landmichl with a big lake trout out of Indiana. Provided by Bruce Zolna

Capt. Ed Landmichl with a big lake trout out of Indiana.

Provided by Bruce Zolna

Bruce Zolna emailed the photo above and this from an outing with Capt. Ed Landmichl:

Dale

On Lake Michigan trip #2 for this summer on my boat, Autonomous (June 11), Capt Ed Landmichl and I met and talked to Slez at the fuel dock ($5.98/gal) while he was cleaning a limit of fish from an early morning charter as we were topping off my 150 gal tanks to avoid this weekend’s inevitable increase. Ed and I were doing our usual crack of noon start.

Our second trip in 2 weeks resulted in another IN 2-person limit of 10 fish, this time 4Lake Trout, 2 King Salmon and 4 nice Coho Salmon, including a Coho beast for this time of year.

First trip I wrote you about, we got 6 Lakers (one about 20lbs) 2 Kings (one 16-18lbs, one about 12 lbs) 1Coho and 1 Rainbow. We really have no time to weigh or measure fish, me with a cane and a toe-less left foot wobbling around like something you’d see on aCircus Clown’s VW dashboard as he and 22 close friends disembark the vehicle.

Both trips confirm your and Slez’s Ditch report in yesterday’s Sun Times article about direction and depth. This means most of our fish caught, kept and released took place in IL but we have to observe IN regs and limits when we return to my slip in my IN harbor. While in IL water, we obey IL regs. We now have 3 separate state licenses for fishing in Lake Michigan, ONE Great Lake bordered by four US states. Do fish get Covid tested when swimming across state lines. How dumb is that?

. . . [Almost left in his lengthy brief on fishing licenses across states, but maybe save that for another time.]

PS.

Next time, we’ll cover Mexico, Brazil, England and Irelandadventures.

Your loquacious semi-retired tax lawyer with a fishingrod for a soul.

Bruce A Zolna

The last line is a bit of a inside joke from a fishing trip to the Wolf River.

A “Father’s Day Special” on Triplecatch Charters. Provided by Capt. Rich Sleziak

A “Father’s Day Special” on Triplecatch Charters.

Provided by Capt. Rich Sleziak

Capt. Rich Sleziak at Slez’s Bait in Lake Station texted:

Trolling in 65 to 80 ft straight out of burns ditch and to the west has been good Lakers, coho and a few kings, steelhead here and there.

Dodgers and flys, spindoctors and flys and spoons fished 20ft to the bottom best.

Few perch around nothing crazy yet but some have been caught. Outside the mudd line at burns ditch and around dune state park building.

Baby roaches and regular crappie perch minnows are what you want to use.

Still a few steelhead being caught on Michigan city pier and portage Riverwalk but it is hit or miss for sure. Crawlers and shrimp best baits. Few casting spoons tho too.

Catfish at night in burns ditch and deep river using triple s stinkbait and skipjack.

At dark the crappie bite is good at lake George in Hobart fishing around the bridges with minnows

Christina Petrites at Stan’s Bait & Tackle Center in Hammond emailed:

Hi, Dale! I hope you’re staying cool with this excruciating heat we’ve been having! Here’s what’s been happening in the fishing world…

Fishing on Lake Michigan is staying pretty steady, with catches of Coho & Lake Trout with an occasional King mixed in. Small dodgers & flies & small spoons have been working best.

Inland lakes are producing some nice catches of Bluegill; red worms, smaller leeches, & beemoths have been baits of choice.

Walleye fishing on the rivers are picking up nice mostly on nightcrawlers & larger leeches.

Catfishing had been moderate, with shad, nightcrawlers, & hornworms working well.

ROOT RIVER, WISCONSIN

Click here for the Wisconsin DNR’s report, usually on Tuesday or Wednesday.

SHABBONA LAKE

James Baranski with a good largemouth bass from Shabbona Lake. Provided photo

James Baranski with a good largemouth bass from Shabbona Lake.

Provided

James Baranski messaged the photo above and this on Sunday:

Hi Dale. Shabonna fishing report Sunday June 29. Talking with various fishermen, walleye were slow and all shorts being caught. Someone got at 19 inches but that is all I heard. Nobody was getting crappie. I fished for bass all day and got about 25. Most boated were 2 to 2.5lbs but managed a 4.5 and 4.05lb respectably. I thought they would fire up on Sunday but the blue bird skies did not help. It was overcast till about 11 and most bass were caught in 6 to 8 ft. The previous week they were a bit tighter. Grubs and green flipping jigs were on the menu and also got a few shorts on a 3.8 inch paddle tail. Here are the highlights. Tight lines.

Summer hours—6 a.m.-10 p.m.—run through Oct. 31.

Boondocks Bait Shop is open 6 a.m.-7 p.m. daily; restaurant, 11-8 daily.

SOUTHEAST WISCONSIN LAKEFRONT

Click here for the southern Lake Michigan reports from the Wisconsin DNR.

SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN

Staff at Tackle Haven in Benton Harbor said it’s 140 feet for lakers with some coho, some kings and a couple steelhead; off the St. Joseph pier, some steelhead mornings and evenings; perching picking up south of St. Joseph in 40 feet.

Paddle and Pole hosts the Berrien Springs Fish Ladder Camera.

WOLF RIVER, WISCONSIN

Guide Bill Stoeger in Fremont texted:

The bite is really slow right now, not sure why. Some crappie, white bass and walleye, but you’re working for everything you get.

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