The Ottumwa Courier

October 24, 2013

Southeast Iowa Fishing Report


Ottumwa Courier

---- — Lake Geode

Water temperature is in the low 60s. Channel Catfish - Good: The catfish are biting on worms and chicken liver. Work the deeper water up in the bays and along the face of the dam. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills fishing has been spotty lately. Look for the fish to be on the flats above the steeper ledges to deep water along the North side of the lake. Worm and bobber or a small jigs tipped with a wax worm are my go to baits this time of year at Geode.

Lake Belva Deer

The water is starting to cool down pretty good. Water Temperature is in the low to mid 60s. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegill fishing seems to be on and off. They are catching them first thing in the morning out in 8 to 10 foot of water. Crappie - Fair: A few crappies are still being caught. They seemed to have moved back out to deeper water.

Lake of the Hills

Water temperature is in the upper 50s now. The fall Trout stocking was last Saturday. Plenty of the 2000 trout remain in the lake. Remember Lake of the Hills is the only lake in West Lake Park where the use of live minnows for bait is allowed. Rainbow Trout - Good: Trout are starting to settle down. Look for them around the stumps and logs in shallow water and around the brush piles out a little deeper. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills fishing has been picking up lately. They are moving in shallow when the sun is out.

Railroad Lake

Live minnows cannot be used as bait in Railroad Lake. Channel Catfish - Good: Catfishing has been good in Railroad using stinkbait and chicken liver. Fish the flats on the north side or the old creek channel on the south.

Wilson Lake

The fall trout stocking will be November 9 at 1 p.m. 1,000 trout will be released around the lake. 200 will be tagged for prizes. Bluegill - Fair: Work the brush piles and culvert to pick up some bluegills. The bite should pick up as the weather settles down.

Environmental Discovery Park North Pond

The fall trout release will be November 9 at 10 a.m. 1,000 rainbow trout will be released with 100 being tagged for prizes. Bluegill - Good: Bluegill fishing has been good using worm and bobber.

Skunk River (Coppock to Mississippi River)

Water levels are really low right now. Channel Catfish - Good: Catfish has been fairly good. Find the deeper holes and you'll find the fish. Water temperature is not low enough to send the fish towards their overwintering holes and they are on the feed right now to fatten up for the winter. For more information on the above lakes and rivers call the Lake Darling Fisheries Station at 319-694-2430.

Hannen Lake

Remember, no minnows are allowed here. Water clarity is about 6 feet and water temperature is about 50 degrees. Crappie - Fair: Try small jigs over brush. Most fish are 10-11 inches.

Kent Park Lake

Crappie - Fair: Try fishing minnows over and around wood structure.

Lake Macbride

Water temperature is running about 50 degrees, but will continue to drop with the cooler weather. Water clarity is poor as the lake has turned over. Fishing has been slow. Crappie - Slow: Try the ends of laydowns with jigs or minnows. Most fish are less than 10 inches. There are decent year classes of 6 and 9-inch fish. Walleye - Slow: A few fish are being picked up by shore fishermen fishing windblown rocky banks.

Diamond Lake

Remember, no minnows are allowed here. Bluegill - Fair: Try small jigs tipped with worms around brush. Most fish are 6-7 inches. Crappie - Good: Try small jigs around brush. Most fish are 8-9 inches but they are plentiful. Early and late in the day seem to be producing best.

Otter Creek Lake

Bluegill - Fair: These are being caught out deeper on worms. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Remember bass have to be 15 inches to keep. Yellow Bass - Fair: The yellows have been deeper. Most are being caught from boats drifting live bait.

Coralville Reservoir

The current lake level is 685.6 feet. Angling pressure has decreased due to the colder temps. White Bass - Fair: Look for schools of fish or seagulls chasing shad. Most schools are not along the bank or structure oriented. Once you find a school, big catches are possible. Most fish are 10-12 inches with an occasional larger fish. Crappie - Fair: Most anglers are having success with jigs along steep rock banks or by wood/brush. Most fish have been 10-12 inches but fish from 8-16 inches are available. For more information, contact the Lake Macbride Fisheries Station at 319-624-3615.

Lake Wapello

Try using small jigs tipped with a wax worm or chunk of nightcrawler for bluegills. Anglers should try jig n pig combos for largemouth bass.

Red Haw Lake

Try jigs tipped with a minnow for crappies. A slip bobber and a minnow may also produce some fish. Try rubber worms or spinnerbaits for largemouth bass.

Lake Sugema

Try a slip bobber and a minnow for crappies in 8-10 feet of water. Try different depths and different spots until finding active fish. Try slowing down crankbaits or spinnerbaits for largemouth bass along the rip-rapped shorelines.

Rathbun Reservoir

The current lake level is 905.33 feet with normal pool being 904 feet. The water temperature is 59 degrees. Crappie - Slow: Anglers have been finding some crappies around brush piles in 6-8 feet of water. Use jigs or minnows around these areas. Crappies are starting to move into shallower water so try using a jig tipped with a minnow along the shorelines. Sorting is needed for larger fish. Walleye - Slow: Fishing pressure has been light. Fish around submerged points and rock piles with crankbaits or try using a minnow under a slip bobber. Don't forget Lake Rathbun contains zebra mussels so make sure to clean, drain, and dry boats before transporting to another water body. Spray boats and trailers with high pressure hot water (above 104 degrees) or let them dry for at least 10 days (5 days in the sun). If you have other questions regarding fishing in south central Iowa call the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406.