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04/24: Midwest Fishing Report

MIDWEST FISHING REPORT

INDIANA PERCH: Boaters started taking jumbo perch this week in 47 to 50 feet off Gary Light. Weather should hold. Water is still ‘‘dingy,’’ so have orange glow flies to go with the minnows on the bottom, said Mike Starcevich at Mik-Lurch.

AREA RIVERS: The Des Plaines, Fox, DuPage and Illinois are receding from record or near-record floods. Ken Gortowski noted the Fox tributaries will clear fastest. KANKAKEE: River is dropping back within its banks. Norm Minas is having success working flood debris piles (either floating a light jig on the side or dropping a heavier one through), but he had success for multiple species with multiple presentations.

CHAIN O’LAKES/FOX: Closed to boating from the Wisconsin line to the Montgomery dam.

COOLING LAKES/STRIP PITS: MAZONIA/BRAIDWOOD: Close is 7:30 p.m. Braidwood is around 70 degrees on the hot side, not much cooler on the cold. Bass are decent, as the high school sectional Monday showed, primarily on crankbaits. Catfish remain good. Shore fishermen are taking some quality bluegills. Water receded and is clearing at Mazonia; should be a good weekend. LaSALLE: Concessionaire is on hold until weather breaks. HEIDECKE: Water needs to warm. Only one keeper was caught at the sectional Monday.

DELAVAN LAKE, WIS.: Arden Katz said lake is up 3 feet and launch water is dirty, but bluegills are outstanding on Mini-Mites and small bobbers in southern channels. Some smaller crappie, too.

DOWNSTATE: SHELBYVILLE: Ken Wilson of Lithia Guide Service reported fishermen taking some walleye in the evenings below the dam, but the outflow is wide-open now. All launches were open as of Tuesday. He said crappie are fair in 18 to 20 feet. Only the Wolf Creek cleaning station is open.

LAKEFRONT: CHICAGO: Henry’s reported best browns and coho from shore are at 63rd. Capt. Bob Poteshman of Confusion Charters reported good lakers (best bite) with some coho and browns around Chicago breakwalls and
Montrose horseshoe. NORTH POINT: Poteshman reported more browns
(15 to 30 feet) than coho (scattered in 30 to 100 feet) are being caught, but every day changes. SMELT: What? Season ends Tuesday.

NORTHERN WISCONSIN: EAGLE RIVER: Chamber of Commerce reported 20 to 30 inches of ice. MINOCQUA: Kurt Justice of Kurt’s Island Sport Shop said travel (mainly ATV) and ice conditions vary (as much as 23 to 26 inches).
Crappie and bluegills are good.

NORTHWEST INDIANA: For perch, see top. Coho and browns are fair when accessible. Bill ‘‘Any Luc’’ Lanham reported good panfish in low-light hours at Willow Slough. NOTE: Motorized boats are restricted to idle speed or lower on the Barbee and Tippecanoe Lake chains.

SHABBONA LAKE: Considering the water last weekend, Lakeside extended its Mega Big Fish Contest for multiple species to include this weekend. Go to shabbonalake.com or call (815) 824-2581.

SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN: On Saturday, walleye, pike, muskie, stream trout and catch-and-release bass seasons open. Tyler Harmon messaged that river levels and clarity are improving.



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