Midwest Fishing Report
BY DALE BOWMAN September 20, 2011 10:20PM
Updated: November 10, 2011 3:01PM
SHORELINE SALMON: Both numbers and good sized chinooks continue to be caught. One regular said more salmon were caught from shore this month than in the last three years combined. That’s impossible to prove, but I suspect it’s right. It’s a classic fall run and classic spoons (Cleos, Krocodiles, KO Wobblers) and crankbaits (Frenzies, Wiggle Warts) are working. CHICAGO: The two hotspots have been Montrose on the North Side or Jackson Park/Casino Pier on the South. Mike Repa at Park Bait said windier days, the horseshoe has been best at Montrose, but the harbor mouth has been most consistent. Bob Shirley at Anglers Outlet reported outstanding salmon by his staff at Jackson Park. Steve Palmisano at Henry’s said other good spots have been the mouth of Burnham, 39th, Diversey and Belmont. A 20-pounder leads the Richard J. Daley Sportfishing Derby. Some coho mixed in. WAUKEGAN: The biggest shore king caught so far is a 25-pounder. Steady action. INDIANA (SHORE AND CREEKS): Mik-Lurch reported fish all over near shore and from shore: Hole-in-the-Wall, Hammond, East Chicago, Amoco, Burns Ditch and Michigan City have produced. Mik-Lurch has weighed multiple 20-pound-plus kings. The creeks, especially Salt, Trail and Deep River are loaded; there’s some steelhead, too. SOUTHEAST WISCONSIN: Arden Katz reported ‘‘tearing them up’’ with near-limit catches at Milwaukee and Kenosha, all on rattlebaits. The Root and Pike are extremely low. ST. JOSEPH RIVER (MICHIGAN AND INDIANA): Tyler Harmon, a Michigan guy, Facebooked, “Big push of fish moving to the upper rivers, seems like all the fish in my local [Michigan] spots split, So [Indiana] section of the Joe should have fresh fish. Nothing much coming in at the piers.” Indiana biologist Brian Breidert said last week some coho and kings had pushed up to South Bend already as well as steelhead.
CHAIN O’LAKES AREA: Triangle reported walleye are tending shallow (4-5 feet) and it is a minnow bite, target Mineola, Pistakee Bay and points on Marie; bluegill and crappie are shallow, try Channel and Catherine beside the walleye spots. For bass, look for remaining green weeds; try soft twitchbaits or buzzbaits. Muskie are fair.
DELAVAN/GENEVA LAKES, WIS.: DELAVAN: Guide Dave Duwe reported spottier fishing. GENEVA: Duwe reported OK fishing: rock bass in 15 feet on weed lines; perch in 10-12; smallmouth are in the 20-25; largemouth bass are in 8-10, best around Geneva Bay buoys or boat docks by Stone Manor.
FOX RIVER: WESTERN SUBURBS: Ken Gortowski reported fronts changing conditions daily. He has been doing well for smallmouth on structure in the middle of the river or in riffles that dropped to deeper water.
ILLINOIS RIVER: STARVED ROCK AREA: Time on the Water Outdoors reported crappie are fair on minnows around barge tie-ups; sauger starting to show on the flats and bridges; a few better white bass around the creek mouths and the Route 251 bridge on bladebaits or small crankbaits.
KANKAKEE RIVER: River is very low. In 45 minutes Monday evening, I went 2-for-5 fishing topwaters and spinners at the bottom of chutes or riffles. Norm Minas is doing well on crankbaits or jigs fished on the seams. Ed Mullady reported catfishing good throughout. He said Mike Lee at Frank’s reported good smallmouth and largemouth around Momence; Trading Post reported good smallmouth and rock bass around the state park; and good walleye and smallmouth from the Wilmington dam downstream. In Indiana, Mullady, reported smallmouth and largemouth around English Lake, walleye improving; good crappie and bluegill at Horseshoe Bend.
LAKEFRONT: Shoreline salmon at top. CHICAGO: Weather has limited boat effort. NORTH POINT: Capt. Bob Potesh-man of Confusion Charters reported a mixed bag of kings, coho and lakers in 150-200 feet.
NORTHERN WISCONSIN: EAGLE RIVER: Chamber of Commerce reported good pike and panfish, muskie slowed and walleye and bass fair; water cooled into mid-60s. MINOCQUA: Guide Kurt Justice reported water cooled to upper 50s on flowages and small lakes, 60s on bigger lakes. He said crappie are very good over weed tops in 8-10 feet.
SHABBONA LAKE: Lakeside reported a 10-pound catfish caught, bass and walleye are deep on the drops, crappie are starting to concentrate in the deep trees. Lake cooled to mid-60s.