Lakes Area Fishing Report 05/22/12-06/12/12
Fishing Report 05/22/12-06/12/12
Fishing has remained very consistent in the past three weeks. With our warm weather the fish have been going into their summer patterns.
The surface water temperature has been between 70-75 degrees in the past week throwing the bite in to an excellent pattern.
Game fish have been biting consistently on smaller lakes as well as Delavan Lake and has started to pick up on Geneva Lake.
All of the game fish have been caught on leeches and crawlers in the past two weeks. Large to XL suckers have taken bass and pike.
The plastics bite for bass utilizing Carolina Rigs, Drop-Shot Rigs, Shaky Heads or Jig Worms have worked excellent taking post-spawn bass.
The deep crank bait bite has also taken off also presenting an excellent Swim Bait and Swim Jig bite also.
I had the chance to work with some great kids over the "Free Fishing" weekend June 2-3 in Delavan with the Cub Scouts and in Belvidere, IL with the Coon Creek Casters Fishing Club hosting their annual "Hooked on Fishing" Kids Day.
Large mouth bass for the most part are post-spawn and have moved off beds. Many are still in the shallow areas foraging while many have moved to the outer weed line in 12-18 feet of water.
Fishing live bait rigs have pulled in many fish putting the feedbag on in the past few weeks. Crawlers, leeches and large minnows have worked well.
My favorite way to catch the larger 5 pound + fish is fishing artificial baits. Finesse plastics are an excellent way to get to the deeper fish and present your bait effectively.
Drop shotting is a versatile go to rig, which can be tipped with almost any plastic, presenting the bait and keeping it in the strike zone longer. Examples are YUM F2 Mightee Worms, YUM F2 Dingers, Power Bait Finesse Worms, Power Bait Power Minnows.
Deep water cranking is also very effective, but is very reliant on accurate casting and boat positioning. There are many deep cranks that are effective taking bass along with other game fish.
Rule of thumb in my boat, tie on a 15-30# Fluorocarbon leader guarding your bait succumbing to Northern Pike teeth.
Baits I have had great success with are many but a few examples are Berkley Flicker Shads, Bomber Fat Free Shads, Bomber Deep Flat A’s, Bomber Deep Long A’s, XCalibur Square Lip and Rattle Baits.
All of the baits dive between 3-18 feet covering the water column well.
I have found bass in less than two feet of water out to 18 feet of water. The weed line into shore has produced the most in numbers, but larger fish have been caught in deeper water.
The large weed flats running along Assembly Park, lake Lawn and the rock dike has been excellent for action.
Many of the main lake drop offs and deep weed lines have produced consistently. The Island, Browns Channel and Willow Point have produced fish.
Small mouth Bass have been biting in 20-25 feet of water hitting leeches and Lindy Rigged live-bait.
Drop shotting finesse plastics or working Bass Stalker Football Jigs in green pumpkin or blue black tipped with Kalin’s Grubs or Chigger Chunks along the bottom has produced.
Berkley Powerbait Jerk Shads rigged on bullet head jigs has also worked well. Key on locations listed for both walleye and largemouth bass.
Hard bottom adjacent to weeds will be a productive area to fish.
Walleye action has been continued to be very consistent on Delavan. Ten to twenty fish days are not uncommon right now.
Many fish have been caught during the daylight hours fishing between 17-22 feet of water fishing vertically or dragging Lindy rigged leeches or crawlers.
The optimum time has been early morning and the last few hours of the day.
Casting swim baits slow rolling them on the bottom or swimming jigs tipped with Kalin Grubs or live bait has also produced.
The night bite has produced nice fish casting cranks above the weeds or fishing slip-floats with leeches or crawlers.
Brown’s Channel, the Island, the Gray Condos, The Yacht Club and Del Mar are key locations.
Northern pike have been biting more consistently in 15-20 feet out to 25 feet of water.
Many fish have been relating to the outer weed line feeding on pan fish. Fishing medium to large suckers Lindy rigged or under floats has been a topnotch presentation.
Fishing along the north and south shore near sharp breaks has produced equally fishing in the wind most of the time.
Target areas such as Assembly Park, Del Mar, Brown’s Channel the Island and the Yacht Club.
Blue gill fishing has been consistent for the larger fish in a post-spawn pattern. Many smaller fish can be caught in 2-4 feet of water.
The larger gills have been caught in deeper water suspended and at times right in the weeds in 12-25 feet of water. Moving around and covering water is the game plan to find the active large gills.
Leaf worms, hellgrammites and crawlers have produced. I have also caught large gills on leeches fishing for game fish. The whole lake has been good for blue gill action, but concentrating on weed flats near deep breaks such as the Yacht Club, Lake Lawn and Brown’s Channel are good locations.
Crappies have been caught in 6-12 feet of water suspended over weeds. The large slab crappies have scattered being post-spawn for some time.
Large schools in 30-40 feet of water can be found 10-20 feet down. Drifting, back trolling and casting your arm off are requirements to get into the larger fish. Look for suspended schools using your electronics.
Many fish remain suspended over large weed flats such as Lake Lawn, the Yacht Club, Willow Point Assembly Park, Jackson Park and Brown’s Channel but will be in the 8-10” range for size.
Fishing small hair jigs or jigs tipped with plastics or small minnows has produced. Hali spoons have worked best tipped with leaf worms or crawler pieces have worked best in deep water for all species.
A few nice perch have been caught in deep water while fishing gills and crappies in 6-12 feet of water on the bottom.
Many have been 6-9 inches with a few larger fish being caught. The picture below is a nice 11 ½” fish we caught over this past weekend. Hellgrammites, crawlers and leeches are excellent baits.
The Yacht Club, Village Supper Club and Browns Channel have been consistent locations.
Musky fishing as always requires time and many casts covering water.
Trolling shallow to medium running baits such as Shallow Raiders, Super Shad Raps or Smithwick Super Rouges over the large flats and off shore bars and points would be a go to presentation covering water.
Out from the Island, Willow Point and the Yacht Club would be areas to target. In the past week I have seen many large fish chasing crappies and gills as we have reeled them in.
Small mouth action has been good to start fishing flats out to the first break.
Concentrate on 10-20 feet out to 30 feet of water on main lake flats adjacent to break lines, points and bars drop shotting live bait and finesse plastics. Fishing search baits for feeding bass has been a key strategy.
Working Booyah Football Jigs similar to Delavan Lake has been good for reaction strikes.
Mid-mornings have presented a good crank bait bite in 10-15 feet of water fishing suspended baits and lip less baits erratically.
Fish flat sandy areas such as Fontana Bay, Geneva Bay, Linn Pier and Crawford’s Bar are a few of many key areas to fish.
Large blue gills and Pumpkin seeds still have been caught up to 10 inches in 12-25 feet of water fishing near the bottom. Pumpkin seeds have also been caught on shallow sandy flats while fishing small mouth.
Leaf worms and crawler pieces fished on small spoons such as Hali or Swedish Pimples have worked best or drop shotting live bait. Look for schooled fish on your electronics.
Geneva Bay, Trinkes, Linn Pier, Maytag Point and Fontana Bay are a few areas to fish.
Rock Bass and Yellow perch have been shallow in large numbers and size in 8-15 feet of water. Many fish are in the 4-6 foot depth range, but are smaller in size.
Baby Roaches or Milwaukee Shiners on split-shot or drop shot rigs have worked taking fish along with small jigs tipped with plastics.
Sandy flat areas such as the Yacht Club, Geneva Bay, Cisco Bay and Buttons Bay are great areas to target.
Northern Pike have been found in the same areas as the gills. Fish Lindy rigged medium to large shiners or red tail chubs or under Thill Slip Floats. Trolling large ½ to ¾ ounce white or chartreuse spinners has also taken fish.
Key areas to target are deep flats such as Trinkes or Williams Bay steep break-lines and such as the Military Academy, Cedar Point and George Williams College.
Large mouth bass have been caught up and around piers out to 12-15 feet of water.
Drifting pre-rigged worms or live-bait has produced. Texas or Wacky rigged Yum Dingers in natural colors have worked best. Casting spinner-baits and crank baits have worked also when fish are feeding actively.
Elgin Club, The Country Club and Geneva Bay have been best.
Walleye fishing has been good if you are willing to put the time in on the water fishing after dark trolling stick baits.
Trolling long-lined baits such as Smithwick Rogues, Berkley Flicker Shads remains the best tactic finding and taking fish.
Trolling in Fontana Bay, Trinkes and Cisco Bay are great areas to fish.
Whitewater and Rice Lake continues to present a good large mouth bass bite. The weed growth has taken off requiring fishing weed less-presentations.
The jig bite has been consistent fishing lay downs and around the floating vegetation. The large bogs have held nice fish during the day.
Pitching and flipping ½ to ¾ ounce Bass Stalker Jigs with Berkley Chigger Chunk trailers around wood and floating vegetation has produced numbers and size.
The northern pike bite has been good around the Bogs and along the 18-25 foot break line in the main lake fishing emerging weeds casting deep diving crank baits or spinner baits.
Live bait such as medium suckers or shiners under Thill Slip Floats has also produced nice fish.
A few nice gills have been caught in 10-12 feet of water along standing weeds, but most have been smaller in size.
Lauderdale Lakes Area
The Lauderdale Chain has been consistent for just about everything. Weed lines are now established and are holding fish.
Fishing wacky rigged YUM Dingers in natural patterns, Booyah spinner baits, or top water such as Rebel Pop R’s or Sizmic Toads over shallow areas has produced. Finesse plastic rigs such as Delavan or Geneva have also been very successful.
Northern pike have been caught in 6-12 feet of water fishing shiners under Thill Slip Floats along the weed edge.
Crappies have been caught fishing small jigs with plastics or small shiners under floats in 8-13 feet of water near established weeds.
Blue gills have been caught in 10-15 feet of water. Fish for gills using an Eagle Claw #10 nor 12 Aberdeen Hook under a small float or drift along weed lines tipped with leaf worms, crawlers or hellgrammites.
Rock River/Lake Koshkonong
Fishing has been consistent fishing walleyes along with saugers being caught in the Blackhawk Island and Newville/Edgerton area.
Jigs tipped with crawlers or fatheads slipping the river or casted have been best. Going with the lightest jigs you can get away with has been best.
Surpluses of river shiners in the river system still remain creating stiff competition trying to catch fish.
Trolling the lake has been producing consistently catching feeding walleyes and northern pike.
Crank baits have been working, but as the water warms crawler harnesses will start to shine.
Bright colors and big blades throwing out vibration has been a winning plan. Running my Minn-Kota Terrova electric trolling motor pulling harnesses behind my Church Planer Boards has worked best on calm days.
Be sure to run your boards wide covering water. When trolling please take care to “Go With The Flow” and try not to cross the path of fellow anglers trolling out there.
A few pike have been caught in the lake and the river casting crank baits, spinners or jigs tipped with plastics.
Catfish have been caught around lay downs, wood and along deeper water and in main river channels while fishing walleyes.
White bass are hitting white or chartreuse twister tails on jigs in 1/32 to 1/8 ounce along with minnows and crawlers tipped on jigs or fishing a small split-shot and a hook.
Lake Michigan Harbor/Tributaries
Many of the charters are catching great numbers of fish day to day catching a good mix of salmon and trout. Most fish in the lake have been caught in 175 feet of water into shore.
I will continue my Lake Michigan reports in August.
Best Of Luck On The Water!
John Reddy a local fishing guide operates Reddy Guide Service in the Delavan area. He is a professional fishing guide and educator licensed by the Department of Natural Resources and a United States Coast Guard licensed Great Lakes Charter Captain. John is a community blogger and is not a part of The Gazette staff. His opinion is not necessarily that of the The Gazette staff or management.