Midwest Fishing Report: Rivers around Chicago fishing

SHARE Midwest Fishing Report: Rivers around Chicago fishing

As my column shows today, there is some good smallmouth action going for the rivers section of the Midwest Fishing Report; catfish would be the other top bite.

This is the extended online version of the MFR, which appears on the Sun-Times outdoors page on Wednesdays. Well, it is the rivers section. The lakes section will be posted later.

If you have suggestions, post in the comments section or let me know at straycasts@sbcglobal.net.


For a general overview of nearby river conditions, click here.

To get to more specific gauges, even on creeks, in Illinois, click here.


Marcus Benesch of sent this:

Southern reaches of the riverreceived some rain and itstemporarily helping out water levels in the main channel and tributaries. Northern stretch of river still pretty low after receiving little rain if any.In Wheelinglarge mouthbass have beenin a feeding frenzy. Most are running smallto average size and hanging outunder or in front ofthe bridges. They seem to be chasing small artificial baitswith some coming on the old worm and bobber. In Park Ridge common carp are running in trophy sizesof 20+ pounds and over. Best chances for a monster carp come at sun up floating bread on the surface with a small hook or ona fly. Lots carpare still being had all day and night on night crawlers.


Ken Gortowski sent this:

As for fishing reports, I’ll be busy but did catch a few on the fly. Also was doing really well on quantities in the creeks that had water in them. I’m leaving the really shallow ones alone. Not fair to the fish. The rain kicked the river up from 250 cfs to 1100 cfs and back to 500 cfs in 12 hours. It’s settled down already so guys should just go fish anywhere on the river. I’ll be out there every day with the fly rod, but not sure I’ll have time to report back to you. Read somewhere guys were spotting a fair amount of dead fish north of Elgin way. Nothing down below Montgomery, haven’t seen a single dead fish. That’s what they get for keeping all the dams up that way.

Always enjoy a sideswipe editorial comment from Ken, especially when he is absolutely right and I totally agree.

BTW, click here for Sam Bennett’s “Getting Started Guide” for folks who are new to the Fox or river fishing in general.


Time on the Water Outdoors in Spring Valley reported few trying, but catfish hitting best. There is enough water from recent rains upstream for the launches.


Nothing to report, even with the rains Saturday. Maybe the rains tonight and tomorrow, coupled with the incoming cooler weekend weather, will bring in some fresh skamania.


As my column showed, I just had a ball chasing active smallmouth Monday morning while fly fishing with Matt Mullady, who can be reached at (815) 932-6507.

Norm Minas sent this:

With rain over to the rest the river came up a little but it really had no effect on the fishing. Some old, river is much closer to record low flow than to normal flow, water temps low 80’s, weed clumps flowing a minor deal . For the most part, it’s been crankbaits on seams, riffles, channel edges and near by flats A couple on topwaters and jigs, rattlebaits not really turning the trick the last couple outings. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8n2c7ST-3fI That’s kinda what I feel when writing these reports lately

You never really know a guy until you know his musical tastes. And this surprised me a little at first, then it figured it was about right for Norm.

Ed Mullady sent this:

AT THE KANKAKEE RIVER IN BOTH INDIANA AND ILLINOIS, THE KANKAKEE RIVER AND ITS TRIBUTARIES COULD USE ADDITIONAL WATER. Fish are continuing to hit, and some good catches are being made! ***CATFISH HITTING GOOD UP & DOWN RIVER, WITH SOME OF THE BEST ACTION HAPPENING AS DARKNESS FALLS ON THE RIVER. ***SMALLMOUTH BASS HITTING GOOD! IN INDIANA, TRY AROUND *DUNN’S BRIDGE *POINT,NORTH OF TOWN OF ENGLISH LAKE . THAYER AREA TO IL STATE LINE. ILLINOIS; AROMA PARK AREA THROUGH JOHNSON’S VETERAN-FISHERMAN’S PARK IN KANKAKEE *KANKAKEE RIVER STATE PARK *WILMINGTON ISLAND PARK THRU BARDWELL ISLANDS. REX MULLADY HAS BEEN CATCHING NICE SIZED SMALLMOUTH BASS NEAR ROCKY AREAS. GOOD BAITS INCLUDE *MEPPS #2,3 SPINNERS *WEEDLESS DOCTOR SPOONS, LIVE MINNOWS, RATTLIN’ ROGUES. ***WALLEYE FAIR. Best fishing throughout river very early in morning or late afternoon into the night(many caught at any time). Good baits:Jig and minnow *minnow shaped plugs *Weedless Doctor Spoons *Jig and minnow *livenight crawlers. ***NORTHERN PIKE being caught in both states. Best seems to be areas where ditches,creeks enter into main river and alongside trunks of all trees in the water. Good on 4-6″ live minnows *Dardevle Spoons *large Mepps Spinners *Weedless Doctor Spoons. ***LARGEMOUTH BASS: Usually in quieter river waters, off river bayous, backwaters,shorelines, along islands. Good baits include: 4-6″ live minnows *live crawlers *live crawfish. Spinner Bass baits of any kind can work well on these fish. ***ROCK BASS GOOD! REPORTS are good in most locations and some bigger ones being caught. Streamer flies, live 2-3″minnows, redworms, #2 Mepps Spinners. ***CROPPIE, BLUEGILL, Fair to good in quieter locations on smaller minnows, night crawlers,red worms, #2 Mepps Spinners. GOOD FISHING! Ed Mullady, Editor, Sportsman’s Letter More Kankakee River fishing, outdoors,conservation in the River Package. Available ordering info by phoning 815 932 7285 during business hours, or e-mail requestSPORTSMANLETTER@aol.com.


There is access at Morris Wetlands at the mouth.









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