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August in Chicago fishing, coming off the full moon: Midwest Fishing Report

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Fox River smallmouth. Ramblin Ray Stevens son.
Provided

It’s summer, there’s big fish around, and it’s summer for this sprawling raw-file Midwest Fishing Report.

One highlight is a good number of steelhead in Trail Creek.

Ramblin’ Ray Stevens, part of the WLS morning team, tweeted the picture above of his son Conner and this note early Saturday morning or late Friday night, depending how you look at these things, on the Fox River.

My kid with a nice fox river full moon fish. Me at 3 am fishing Muskie. this is the time to be out.

Fishing in a full moon is something special.

As to details, Stevens DM’ed:

Fishing 2 am batavia dam/rapids.

The condensed Midwest Fishing Report appears Wednesdays on the outdoors page of the Sun-Times newspaper. The sprawling raw-file report is posted here online on the Sun-Times outdoors page.

LAKEFRONT PERCH

A duck hunter at the Wolf Lake blind draw Saturday told me they started catching perch in Cal Harbor late last week. But since then, I have heard nothing encouraging, other than Capt. Rich Sleziak  at Slez’s Bait in Lake Station, Ind., who texted:

Perch slow water to warm up close
Should pick up towards end of week again perch

We have quite a bit of warm water piled up on our end of Lake Michigan. So warm that there is no or not much of a thermocline.

ILLINOIS FROG HUNTING

Frog hunting in Illinois, bullfrogs only, is open. Daily bag is eight. Fishing license is required; bullfrogs may be taken by “hook and line, gig, pitchfork, spear, bow and arrow, hand, or landing net.”

AREA LAKES

More ponds are growing thick vegetation and scum, in other words it is late summer and time for scum frogs for largemouth. Otherwise it is bluegill in the weed pockets or weed lines, unless the lakes are deep enough for bluegill to suspend.

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Provided.

William Marquez tweeted the photo above and this note:

I caught the 24inch , 6 pound channel cat at a local pond near my home

Ken “Husker” O’Malley sent this:

Pete Lamar sent this:

Hi Dale,

I did finally get out to do some fishing last weekend.  Here’s what I found:

You mentioned hopping a frog through the slop on a local pond?  I hope you have more success than I did.  A big popper stripped along the edges of weeds and lily pads produced a few half-hearted strikes and no fish brought to hand.  One doesn’t fish topwaters at night for the half-hearted strikes.

. . .

Good luck chasing the local largemouths.

Pete

I have not yet done my frog fishing in the slop yet this year. Weather might be right for it this week.

AREA RIVERS/CREEKS

Ken “Husker” O’Malley sent this:

Area creeks and rivers- they are in perfect wading conditions. Focus on current seems for smallmouth using a Midwest rig. Best color has been chartreuse.

Click here to find river closures listed by the Illinois DNR. 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 LAKE

Lake is open 6 a.m. to sunset. Check with Jon’s Bait Shop–(815) 237-2822–in South Wilmington.

CALUMET SYSTEM

No update.

CHAIN O’LAKES

Brad Irving at Triangle Sports and Marine said “stripers” (white bass, yellow bass) were going on Pistakee over the cribs and on Marie, best evenings with Flicker Shads, Big Dude bladebaits or Mepps; catfish are going all over on live roaches, stink bait or cutbait; a few muskies are being caught, mainly by bass guys; walleye are slow.

Check Fox Waterway Agency or (847) 587-8540 for more information.

STRATTON LOCK AND DAM: Open daily 8 a.m.-midnight through Sept. 30. Click here for more info on the lock and dam.

CHICAGO RIVER

Capt. Pat Harrison at Pat Harrison Outdoors sent this update:

Chicago  River and Lake Michigan Report,

  Fishing was pretty Good for most of the week  Small and Largemouth Bass were caught and a lot of Panfish.  Bass on the River are mainly Largemouth the lake is Smallmouth  drop shot rigs, jig and creature baits, tube jigs seem to be what they want. Working the walls and pilings on the river and the rocks and break walls on the lake produced fish but we had to work for them but they are there.   Panfish on the river are still going after a white jig up to 1/4oz. with a white twister tail and tipped with a waxie, Catfish are eating them too. Carp are moving a bit I am going to put some canned corn in the boat in case anyone wants to go after them. Weather is still messing with the fishing a bit with bluebird skies and bright sun but fish can be caught.

 They are going to be removing the dam on the North Branch starting next week in hopes of improving the water quality. There have been reports of Walleye being caught at the dam for years that wash out of the Skokie Lagoons during floods. It will be interesting to see what affect this will have on the fishery I have tried fishing the North Branch quite a few times with very little success I hope that helps that. I know on the main branch I can catch fish all the way down to Ashland its not the prettiest water but it holds fish. My hopes would be with the improved flow that it will push fish a bit farther down river.

 Grandt Rods my Rod Sponsor mentioned they have some new projects in the works which is exciting. My rods have been on 3 different boats with me and are still performing like the day I got them. Looking forward to seeing what is coming.

Have a Great week go fishing enjoy your surrounding and Please leave them cleaner that you found them. We can all take a part in making our shores and waters cleaner Please do your Part.

Thanks Capt. Pat,

DELAVAN LAKE, WISCONSIN

Robert Coutinho sent the photo above and this note:

Hey Dale, caught this 40 inch pike and a lot of chunky bass this weekend on Delavan

Dave Duwe sent this:

Delavan Lake Fishing Report 7/30/18 through 8/6/18

The bite on Delavan Lake remains steady but slower than recent weeks. We are catching between 10-15 game fish per trip, however the size and numbers are down a bit from prior weeks.

Walleye pike fishing has been all right in the 13-15 ft depth range right on the weed line. The best location has been west of Willow Point. The legal fish I’ve been catching have been on split shot rigged nightcrawlers within the weeds. First light and last light have been the most active periods.

Largemouth bass fishing has been good. They can be caught on 2 different presentation. One is the early morning top water bite in 4-6 ft of water. And the other is the weed line bite in 15-17 ft of water. For the top water, use a chrome/blue chug bug or a white buzz bait. Look for the fish on the south shore from the Village Supper Club through Belvidere Park. For the weed line bite, fish the inside turns on deep water points, such as the Concrete point and Willow Point. They’ve been easily caught on split shot rigged nightcrawlers. The slower the presentation the better for this bite.

Bluegill fishing has been fantastic. I’ve been catching them in 14-15 ft of water or in 20 ft of water outside the weed line. Look for the fish by Browns Channel, Assembly Park point or by the island on the west end. The best success is coming off of a small split shot fished 6-12 inches off bottom.

Crappie fishing has been good. The fish are suspended on the outside of the weed line, 6-7 ft down in 20 ft of water. The best success has been slow trolling 1/32 oz plastics or casting them. By trolling them you can cover a lot more water and once you find the school you can concentrate on casting for them.

Northern pike have been okay. I’m catching a few every trip just off the weed line in 17-20 ft of water. They are biting on medium suckers fished on a lindy rig with a 24 inch leader. The best location has been west of Willow point or from the Yacht Club to the big gray boat house. I position the bait between 1-2 ft off bottom and troll them in a zig zag pattern.

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

No update.

DOWNSTATE NOTES

SOUTHERN ILLINOIS: Check with Jason Johns of Boneyard Fishing. HENNEPIN-HOPPER: Click here for regulations and other information.  EVERGREEN: As posted on the web site:

Evergreen Lake Bait Shop & Boat Rental – NOW OPEN 6-6 EVERY DAY!

LAKE SHELBYVILLE:  Check with Ken Wilson of Ken Wilson Guide ServicePOWERTON: Open 6 a.m.-6 p.m.

FOX RIVER: WESTERN SUBURBS

Pete Lamar sent this:

Hi Dale,

I did finally get out to do some fishing last weekend.  Here’s what I found:

. . .

I fished a couple of Fox tribs late in the afternoon on Sunday.  The water was as low and clear as I’ve seen in a long time.  I probably spooked as many fish as I landed.  But I did get a few bonus rock bass along with a couple of nice smallmouths.  Most fish were found wherever there was some overhead protection, whether in the form of a bridge, (relatively) deep water or a broken surface; they seem to sense that they are vulnerable to overhead predators in those low water conditions.

. . .

Pete

I find that overhead cover note interesting.

FOX RIVER, WISCONSIN

No update.

GENEVA LAKE, WISCONSIN

Dave Duwe sent this:

Lake Geneva Fishing Report 7/30/18 through 8/6/18

Fishing on Lake Geneva continues to be a challenge. The pan fish bite is really good but the game fish are scattered making it difficult to pattern them. The best fishing on the lake remains the walleye at night, you may not catch legal ones but the numbers are there.

Walleye fishing has been solid in the overnight hours. Concentrate in the 15-17 ft depth range about 10-12 ft down. Medium diving stick baits in chrome/blue or black/gold have been producing most of the action. You want to put the stick baits about 70 feet behind your planer boards. Look for the fish in Williams Bay or by Abbey Springs.

Musky action has been good. They have been starting to bite adjacent to the shallow weed flats like Trinkes, Fontana Beach or Williams Bay. First light, about 5- 6 a.m. has been producing most of the action. Once the pleasure boating gets active the musky bite ends. You want to use large musky lure like Gramma lures or medium diving long crank baits in fire tiger or Chub pattern.

Bluegill fishing is awesome in the 16-20 ft depth range. The biggest fish I’ve caught have been by Gage Marine or Elgin Club. I’ve been fishing leaf worms 6 inches to 1 foot off bottom.

Largemouth bass have been slow. They are off the weed line in 18-20 ft of water. I’ve been catching a few by Covenant Harbor, Maytag Point and by Black Point. You want to fish 4 inch finesse worms on a drop shot with a 12 inch leader.

Smallmouth bass fishing has been very slow. The only fish I’ve been catching have been by Pier 290 in 20-22 ft of water or slightly east of Cedar Point in 20-25 ft of water. The fish can be caught on lindy rigged leeches or lindy rigged suckers. I’ve been using a 24 inch leader.

Rock bass fishing has been spotty. The best location has been by South Shore Club in 14-16 ft of water. Split shot rigged nightcrawlers seems to be the best approach.

Good luck and I hope to see you on the water. For guide parties, please call Dave Duwe at 262-728-8063

GREEN BAY/STURGEON BAY

No update this week from Lance LaVine at Howie’s Tackle in Sturgeon Bay.

Click here to see the Wisconsin DNR’s Lake Michigan Fishing Report.

HEIDECKE LAKE

Lake hours are 6 a.m. to sunset daily; well, shore fishing is always scheduled to open at 6;30 a.m.

ILLINOIS RIVER

Check with B&B Live Bait in Ottawa–(815) 433-0432.

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.

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

Lots I mean lots of steelhead in trail creek spawn shrimp spinners best baits

KANKAKEE RIVER

Click here for some options for a side trip if visiting Bears Training camp.

As to fishing, Kyle Lund sent this last week and today said that should hold up:

Kankakee River report The Kank is very low and very clear with a flow rate just over 1200 CFPS. Normal flow this time of year is over double that. With the water being low and clear it’s going to do a couple things. Some good some not so good. Let’s start with not so good. Weeds will grow in the the middle of the river in calm water we want to fish limiting our bait selection to just a few options. With the weeds come more hiding places. Sometime you can find runs between the weeds that you can work a bait along almost like a weedline in a pond or lake. There are most defiantly fish along these runs so dont give up if the first offering you present is not taken. One day fishing with Norm(aka Creekyknees) we stood and fished a series of runs like this. each one we caught fish on a different bait. Sometime it was the first bait we threw but more times than not we cycled through 4 or 5 different selections before we could pick a few off. Now the good. If you find an area that has little to no weed growth find the fastest deepest water you can and fish the edge of it. Those fish will need that extra oxygen the fast run provides and will be there most of if not all day and in fairly large numbers. The best bet to find active smallies is to fish from about 7pm till 7am. With the water being clear smallies are hesitant to move into shallow water to feed in daylight and that gives a great opportunity to chase Brown bass at night. Nothing beats slow rolling a spinner bait against the current in the pitch black waiting for the explosion. Let’s hope for a good rain and the river to come up so we can wash these weeds out before they set firm roots and make fall bassin a hassle. Tight lines. Catchem up

I would note the river is even lower and clearer than it was a week ago. So be prepared to adjust for that.

KENOSHA, WISCONSIN

Click here to see the Wisconsin DNR’s Lake Michigan Fishing Report. It generally comes out Tuesday.

LAKE ERIE

Click here for bag limits and prospects for the season from the Ohio DNR. The Ohio DNR has general Lake Erie info and a fishing report.

LAKEFRONT

See perch update or non-update at the top. When winds go north and it is nasty, there’s drum, especially at Montrose

Capt. Bob Poteshman said it was “hot and cold’’ out of North Point, depending on the day in 120 feet or out to 250, Leadcores up high to stuff on the bottom, even in 250 for mostly lakers with some steelhead, coho and kings. Out of Chicago is “warm and medium,’’ everything is deeper than 100, mainly lakers with a smattering of coho, steelhead and kings.

Capt. Scott R. Wolfe of  School of Fish Charters sent this report and the photo above:

Hi Dale

Waukegan offshore fishing was fair to good with several limit lake trout catches. There were a good number of big fish with several in our boat in the upper teens. Most lakers are being taken on one of the offshore reefs with the North reef, Northeast Reef, South Reef, Julian’s Reef and several smaller ones producing fish. Mo rigs with yellow and green Jimmy Fly skirts were best. Silver fish were tough to come by with most in the 150-190 foot range suspended 70 to 100 feet down. The fish being raked are big.  Attached is an 18# Steelhead we took Saturday afternoon which is a new boat record for us. It came on a 300 copper rig with a Warrior Magnum Psycho Perch Spoon. That has been a solid performer for a while now.
Out of Chicago fishing was poor. The north wind last weekend pushed very warm water to the south end of the lake and scattered and largely shut down the fish. There is West and South wind predicted this week and I expect Chicago will improve greatly by the weekend.
Capt. Scott Wolfe
School Of Fish Charters
630-341-0550

Capt. Pat Harrison at Pat Harrison Outdoors sent this update:

Chicago  River and Lake Michigan Report,

  Fishing was pretty Good for most of the week  Small and Largemouth Bass were caught and a lot of Panfish.  Bass on the River are mainly Largemouth the lake is Smallmouth  drop shot rigs, jig and creature baits, tube jigs seem to be what they want. Working the walls and pilings on the river and the rocks and break walls on the lake produced fish but we had to work for them but they are there.

. . .

Grandt Rods my Rod Sponsor mentioned they have some new projects in the works which is exciting. My rods have been on 3 different boats with me and are still performing like the day I got them. Looking forward to seeing what is coming.

Have a Great week go fishing enjoy your surrounding and Please leave them cleaner that you found them. We can all take a part in making our shores and waters cleaner Please do your Part.

Thanks Capt. Pat,

LaSALLE LAKE

Lake is open daily 6 a.m.-sunset.

MADISON CHAIN, WISCONSIN

Check updates from D & S Bait on Facebook.

MAZONIA

Lake is open 6 am. to sunset daily. Check with Jon Meder at Jon’s Bait Shop–(815) 237-2822–in South Wilmington.

MENOMINEE RIVER, WISCONSIN

Check with Mike Mladeik at Mike Mladenik Guide Service.

MILWAUKEE HARBOR

Click here to see the Wisconsin DNR’s Lake Michigan Fishing Report. It is generally out Tuesdays.

NORTHERN WISCONSIN

MINOCQUA:  Kurt Justice of Kurt’s Island Sport Shop sent this:

Its Summertime…..but the fishin’ ain’t easy!

Several species seem tight lipped this summer, but a few are staying right in line.

Bluegill:  Good – Moving deeper on the large lakes.  Anglers surprised to find Gills in as deep as 25’, yet most hovering in the 12-18’ range.  Small leeches and worms, even small minnows.  Mini-mites and small tubes.  Warm evenings bringing good top-water action for anglers using poppers in the shallows.

Largemouth Bass:  Good – Best buried in weeds.  Use Ned rigs or Wacky Worms to pull fish out.  Nice Largemouth of 15-18”, a few larger.  Creature baits and jig/creature combos also working.  Evenings bringing top-water action on plastic frogs in slop.  Tail baits (Whopper Ploppers, Tatsumakis) working well on warm evenings along or over top weeds.

Smallmouth Bass:  Good-Fair – Deep gravel humps or over Sandgrass beds.  Drop shotting 3” craw imitations.  Tube jigs also producing as are Football jigs/creature dressing.  For live bait anglers, leeches, crawlers and frozen softshells working.

Northern Pike:  Good-fair – Could be the recent high skies, but the chase isn’t on! Spinnerbaits, swimbaits and  1/8-1/4 oz jigs with 3-4” twisters working best. 

Crappie:  Fair – Not a lot of reports this week.  A few scattered nice slabs (12-13”) over deep wood.  2” twister tails or med Fatheads on slip-floats.

Yellow Perch:  Fair – Best fish deeper over Sandgrass or along weed edges.  Frozen softshells best choice followed by ½ Crawlers or medium Fatheads.

Musky:  Fair – Big spinnerbaits worked over cabbage flats.  Some top-water action early and late.  More lookers than takers.

Walleye:  Poor (at least by my accounts) – Picking the right lake at the right time (I can hear the collective “Duh!”).  Windows small and very early or after dark.  Leeches best.

Maybe the full moon (or the Eclipse?) but action off a bit.  If action is your goal – target Bass and Gills this week.

Kurt Justice
Kurt’s Island Sport Shop
www.kurtsislandsports.com
Like us on FaceBook

EAGLE RIVER: No update from B+L, from reports from Colin Crawford of Colin Crawford Guide Service, for the Eagle River Chamber of Commerce.

NORTHWEST INDIANA

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

Over weekend good trout with mixed in silver fish in 100 to 125 straight out of the ditch and east towards Michigan city fishing wer the cold water is down 70 ft to bottom

Downriggers and 350 coppers best
Lots I mean lots of steelhead in trail creek spawn shrimp spinners best baits
Perch slow water to warm up close
Should pick up towards end of week again perch
Lots of groups fishing going here ther and everywer

ROCK RIVER, ILLINOIS

No update.

ROCK RIVER, WISCONSIN

No update.

ROOT RIVER, WISCONSIN

The Wisconsin DNR’s Root River Report is usually out Tuesday or Wednesday. Click here to see it.

ST. JOSEPH, MICHIGAN

Staff at Tackle Haven in Benton Harbor said lakers and the occasional king are being caught in 130 feet, but most are working lakers in 80-120; for perch, go north to South Haven; it’s mostly catfish and drum in the river.

ST. JOSEPH RIVER, INDIANA

Click here for reports from the Indiana DNR.

SHABBONA LAKE

Staff at Lakeside said catfish are being caught all over; walleye and bass being caught on the road bed; crappie, which take sorting, are being caught in the cribs; bass and bluegill are on the weed lines.

Lakeside–(815) 824-2581–is open 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Park hours 6 a.m.- 10 p.m. The restaurant is open daily.

SOUTHEAST WISCONSIN LAKEFRONT

The Wisconsin DNR’s Lake Michigan Fishing Report restarted. Click here to see it. Streams flow info is at http://waterdata.usgs.gov/wi/nwis/current?type=flow.

WINNEBAGO SYSTEM, WISCONSIN

No update.

WISCONSIN RIVER

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For the Love of Hops keg stage.
Provided

Rob Abouchar sent this:

Hi Dale

No fishing in Wisconsin this week.  The reggae band was winding up a great Summer of performances over the weekend.  It was a great time at Two Brothers in Warrenville at the For The Love of Hops Festival.  Great beer, food and fantastic musical performances turned in by all musicians.  Also one of the most unique stages i have ever played on and i have played some pretty obscure ones. Heading back to Merrill on Saturday for a few more days of Summer on the river.  Then it is back to begin school prep and get the fishing club going for competition.
Tight lines
Rob

Forgive me, I found this too cool not to put in.

WISCONSIN DELLS

Check with River’s Edge.

WOLF LAKE

No update.

WOLF RIVER, WISCONSIN

No update.