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03/05: Midwest Fishing Report 03/05: Fish of the Week

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Midwest fishing report

BRAIDWOOD: Cooler water than usual for the opener
Saturday. Pete Banach, who did OK for bass, found 49 degrees on the cold side and 53 degrees mid-pool. Brian Pentecost, who did very well for bass with chartreuse KVD 1.5 crankbaits on rip-rap, found a hot pocket of 66 degrees. Shoreline is treacherous. Lake is open daily from 6 a.m. to sunset. REMINDER: Intake area is closed to fishing. Anchoring outside the intake and casting in isn’t allowed.

CHAIN O’LAKES AREA: Greg Dickson at Triangle said early and late are best. Best spots for crappie and bluegills are Channel, Loon and Deep. Pike are moving well (close to spawn). There’s 24-plus inches of ice.

COOLING LAKES/STRIP PITS: BRAIDWOOD: See top. MAZONIA: As Fish of the Week shows, there are some quality bass. Bluegills are tough. LaSALLE: Opens March 15. HEIDECKE: Scheduled to reopen April 1, but ice might be a factor.

DELAVAN/GENEVA LAKES, WIS.: Brian Gates at Geneva Lake Bait & Tackle reported lakers on Geneva in The Narrows,
Fontana and off the points in 70 to 105 feet. Lots of ciscoes and some perch off Conference Point Camp. On Delavan, decent bluegills on west end and in front of outlet bridge. Some late crappie on the west end. He’s renting shanties on Geneva and Delavan but needs to know in advance to put them out daily.

DES PLAINES RIVER: Marcus Benesch and a buddy have found spots for open-water kayak fishing and picked up some pike.

LAKEFRONT: Ice fishing continues in the harbors, including at the slip north of 87th. Arden Katz said south side of DuSable is loaded with perch. Guys using extended augers are catching jumbos at Navy Pier. Key at Montrose is to find any weed beds.

NORTHERN WISCONSIN: EAGLE RIVER: Chamber of Commerce reported difficult travel, but panfish are good. MINOCQUA: Kurt Justice of Kurt’s Island Sport Shop reported tough travel, with bluegills and crappie (heavy cabbage in 8 to 12 feet) fair to good.

NORTHWEST INDIANA: Mik-Lurch reported coho were caught when the ice pack opened briefly. Willow Slough remains top spot for ice fishing.

SHABBONA LAKE: Denny Sands at Lakeside said a 12-pounder topped the catfish tournament. Otherwise, it is good bluegills on the road-bed rock piles and some crappie in the trees. There’s 20-plus inches of ice.

SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN: Tackle Haven reported a few
steelhead being chased at Berrien Springs.

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