-- The calendar says it is Summer..
The Weather has been so unpredictable, with little storms just popping up.
But the little cool down and the rain has helped some..
with weeds forming weed edges, most fish are being caught along them.
- Read a couple messages saying with the fish in or along weeds,
they picked more weeds or algae of baits than fish..
- Be Safe and Get out to ENJOY the Outdoors along some GOOD FISHING..!
- During these Hot weather days, Protect yourself from the sun and the heat, drink plenty of liquids.
And, look for areas of cover and shade or deeper water structure to find fish.
** Give yourself the gift of time outdoors this year. **
* Let the Best sound on the water this year be "Daddy, Mommy (Grandpa, Grandma) I caught one"
And it may take more than just one afternoon..
- For those pesky Gnats and all biting insects that are out already, do as we do and not leave home or go out
without a bottle or two of The Original Vanilla Bug Spray to repel those biting gnats, flies and mosquitoes..
Don´t subject yourself or your pet to unnecessary pest attacks!
To get your bottle now,
visit www.vanillabugspray.com for locations or to order..
Get out and ENJOY..!
- - Notes Of Interest : -
June 15 - BULLFROG season opens and runs through Oct. 15th
Bullfrogs ONLY may be taken by hand, hook and line, landing net, bow & arrow and spear or gig
and - Common snapping turtles may also be taken during this time by hand, hook and line or bow & arrow except in southern most counties.
A sport fishing license is required; Limits of 8 bullfrogs daily with 16 bullfrogs possession limit and
daily harvest limit for common snapping turtles is 2 with a possession limit of 4.
* Common snapping turtles and bullfrogs may not be taken by bowfishing tournament participants
* We Recommend you read full Regulations for more details and or exceptions.!
* We want to remind Illinois boat owners to check your three-year boat registration/decal and renew your registration
if it expires on June 30, 2017. Renewing watercraft registration by calling 1-866-867-3542
or go online to the IDNR website at www.dnr.illinois.gov/boating
NOTE: Non-motorized watercraft, including canoes, kayaks, paddle boats,
or sail boards, are no longer required to be titled/registered in Illinois,
unless the vessels have a motor or sail. Non-motorized watercraft owners are required to purchase
an Illinois Water Usage Stamp for $6.00 per calendar year valid through December 31st each year
(for each of their first three vessels, and $3.00 each for any additional vessels).
An agent fee of $0.50 is charged per vessel and Water Usage Stamps are available over-the-counter
from IDNR license and permit vendors listed at https://www.dnr.illinois.gov/LPR/Pages/LicensePermitVendors.aspx
* The 2017 Illinois Fishing Information guide is available online
at IDNR website
* There are several New Illinois Laws for 2017,
Here are couple that pertain to Fishing:
- - No catch limits on private fish ponds
Public Act 99-532, House Bill 5796
Illinois law limits the number of fish a person with a fishing license can legally catch in a 24 hour period.
House Bill 5796 creates an exception for people fishing on fish ponds located on their own private property.
- - Permitting bowfishing for catfish
Public Act 99-867, House Bill 5788
Bowfishing is the practice of taking a fish with a spear or a bow and arrow. Existing Illinois law limited
the kinds of fish that can be taken through bowfishing. HB 5788 added catfish to the Fish Code list of fish
that can be taken with sharp weaponry.
* this one has caused some confusion & questions.
Here is the IDNR answer to clear up * Bowfishing for Catfish *
- The U.S. Coast Guard has a Free boating safety app designed to provide additional resources for mobile users.
Watch USCG app features video with download info & more
- Check our sponsors on the right for your baits, tackle, guide options and more.
Visit their website links on the right.. -----------------------------------------------> > >
- ILLINOIS RIVER
- - Near STARVED ROCK and South downstream:
- Anglers were saying "It was really nice to be on the Illinois River again last week."
However, early this week with all the rain, the river level came back up
getting close to flood stages again, but has started dropping back..
- Mitch tells us this about last week:
"While at Pekin boat ramp on the river,
two boys were fishing on the dock and
saw one of them sets hook. After five
minutes I walked down to them and
five more minutes this 31 lb Flathead
breaks the surface. These boys were
clearly overwhelmed, I reached down
got hold of the jaw and lifted it up.
Biggest fish of the boys life and
Chris (the boy that caught it) made
sure it was released happy & healthy."
- NORFORK LAKE in Arkansas
For current reports or to set up an Awesome fishing trip (we highly recommend),
check Tom Reynolds of STR Outfitters at www.stroutfitters.com
- Here is latest Report from Tom: -
Norfork Lake is on fire right now. The striper bite is awesome on the lower, southern area of the lake.
Starting early look for stripers as shallow as 22 feet and just follow them out as the sun comes up. The best bite the past last week has been around 7:30 am in 40 to 50 feet of water. The striper are hugging the bottom so right now we are putting are baits on the bottom then make 3 turns on our reels to keep the weight off the bottom. We are also using a short leader to keep the bait close to the bottom this has been very effective.
The threadfin shad we are using are less than 2 inches long. We are using #2 and #4 hooks with a 12 lb leader. The best points are Koso and Thumb.
I took the Gerrish family out; Scott and Amy with their 3 boys Caleb, Connor, and Dillon. The boys were 6 to 12 years old and jumped right in on how to hook and catch the fish. I had the boys reel very fast when they see the rod tip go down to the water. This sets the circle hook and then they take it out of rod holder and fight the fish.
We started early leaving the dock at 5 am and did not have a bite for the first 1 hour. The weather was not good but we were close to a marina so I was not worried. In less than 2 minutes we went from no waves to 3 foot rollers. We raced to the marina and were very wet when got there. We waited for over a 1 hour until the stormed passed.
When we went back out we had no bites but we went to where Sean was fishing and started again.
The fish started to bite and in less than 2 hours we caught 15 stripers and lost a few more. Everybody was very happy and had an experience they will not soon forget.
For you out of area folks, you might want to get your calendars out and start making plans now. The stripers are in their summer pattern and the bite is on.
A good tool to use to make your plans with is on the web at www.FishNorfork.com for everything Norfork Lake!
For a real outdoor adventure, you might consider a striper fishing trip combined with a pheasant hunt. It's a blast!
- Tom Reynolds has fished Lake Norfork for over 36 years and guides out of Tracy Ferry Marina;
you can reach him at www.stroutfitters.com or 870-421-1541 or on Facebook
** Reading these Norfork reports it is hard to know the time and work involved to get & keep bait to be able to catch these awesome fish,
but We can verify the time and how much work it is for a live bait fishing guide as we spent 2 days with Tom from start to finish of day to understand "A day as a Guide" and all the time and work involved.
Read our full STORY HERE
BANNER MARSH - 3 access points on Routes 24/9 3 mi. NE of Banner, with a 25HP limit. (309-647-9184)
* 2017 New Written Regs to clarify - Large or Smallmouth Bass . . . Protected Slot Length Limit; 12-18 inches
. . 3 Fish Daily Harvest Limit
- Hugh tells us he caught
a few Nice Bass last week
at Banner Marsh..
DAWSON LAKE - East of Bloomington Exit #149 on I-74, North (right) through LeRoy 4-miles on CH21 then East at Moraine View State Park sign.
-- This is a " No Wake " Lake for those with motors over 10hp.
- The Moraine View Restaurant & Kayak Rental is now open for bait, soft drinks, kayak and boat rental
with daily hours 7am to 7pm & new phone number 866-724-6398
- Bluegills were FAIR-GOOD wax worms, red worms and some small jigs
- Catfish are GOOD over weekend on crawlers or dip baits along edges.
- Crappie were little SLOW and scattered
-- No Word on Bass..?
EMIQUON PRESERVE - Between Havana and Dickson Mounds Museum on IL Route 78
For more info and details on Emiquon, go to http://experienceemiquon.com
* New permits are required for boating and fishing each year - are free and
available at Dickson Mounds Museum, 10956 N Dickson Mounds Rd, Lewistown, IL from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Call The Nature Conservancy at (309) 547-2730.
- - Check their site for updated rules or go to Official Site RULES file.
- Jack tells us that he got out on Monday and the wind made boat control difficult.
Bass were only FAIR on plastics in weeds with couple 17 inch fish. Other angler seemed to do better in deeper water with fewer weeds with other baits..
EVERGREEN LAKE - North of Bloomington to Exit #8 on I-39, and West just over 1-mile and turn left (south) at sign.
* This Lake has BOATING FEES and Evergreen Lake remains a 10 hp (or less) lake.
BAIT SHOP and BOAT RENTAL Hours: 6:00 am to 6:00 pm Daily
NOTE - During the weekdays staff is not present, please press buzzer on the front of the building for assistance
or call the Visitor Center at (309) 434-6770.
* Not much from here this past week..?
- Bass were FAIR on plastics and spinners
- Bluegills are FAIR mostly on wax worms
- Catfish are just FAIR
- Crappie are FAIR-SLOW on minnows out in 14 - 16 foot water
- Saugeye SLOW-FAIR on jig/minnow but small
HEIDECKE LAKE -
- - Lake is OPEN daily until sunset; launch opens at 6am, shore-fishing at 6:30am.
- Bass are just FAIR on plastics, crankbaits and spinnerbaits
- Bluegills are FAIR on waxworms and part crawler
- Catfish were FAIR on crawlers, cut baits and dip baits along edges
- Crappie were SLOW-FAIR on jig/minnow and few trolling
- Hybrids were FAIR-SLOW on crankbaits
- Walleye remain somewhat FAIR on jig/minnow and few on trolled crankbaits
HENNEPIN-HOPPER LAKES -
2 miles South of Hennepin off IL Route 26, turn West on Road 810N & then next right.
** LAKES Will Remain Open through Labor Day, Sept. 4th but
* LAKES are CLOSED to Fishing on Mondays Except Labor Day.
For the complete Rules & Regs details, click HERE
LAKE BLOOMINGTON - North of Bloomington to Exit #8 on I-39, and East for 3 1/2-miles.
---This Lake does have a BOATING FEE with a 40hp limit and Permit Required.
* 2017 New Fish Limit Regs = Striped, White, or Hybrid Striped Bass . . . 10 Fish Daily Harvest Limit,
with no more than 3 Fish greater than or equal to 17 inches
Walleye . . . 18 inch Minimum Length Limit . . 3 Fish Daily Harvest Limit
** Update from outing of June 21st; We found the main lake to be stained and up in the creek areas muddy.
The water temps in morning were about 78 and by noon 80..
Most all fish caught (Bass, Crappie & White Bass) were on trolled crankbaits running about 8 foot in 18-20 foot water as fish were suspended at about 10 foot..
- Bass were FAIR around deeper cover on plastics, crankbaits and few on topwater baits in mornings
- Bluegills are FAIR-GOOD wax worms, part crawler and small jigs near the docks
- Crappie were FAIR-SLOW on jigs and minnows with few trolling or drifting too..
- Hybrid stripers are SLOW-FAIR with a few caught on jigs and bladebaits and word of a possible record fish too..
* Good News For bait: * Mike´s Minnow Bucket Bait Shop
is OPEN for the season..!
2.7 miles west of I-39 in El Paso, IL on US 24
LAKE EUREKA - This Lake is only 30 acres,
and is a good place for the family and kids, a lake where the whole shore line can be fished, there is a boat ramp
and ONLY trolling motor use is allowed and if boat has a Motor on it, you must have a City Motor Permit
but still May Not start it for any reason.! (Remember - No Minnows fishing Allowed)
- No New Reports
* For bait, Check * Mike´s Minnow Bucket Bait Shop
2.7 miles west of I-39 in El Paso, IL on US 24 ..!
LAKE SHELBYVILLE - Between Shelbyville and Sullivan -
LAKE INFO LINE (217) 774-2020 and LAKE PROJECT OFFICE (217) 774-3951.
-- Lake continues a slowly drop and was still about 8+ feet above pool this morning..
- A few Bass caught in mornings in coves on plastics
- Catfish are FAIR on most baits and mud leeches
- Crappie are SLOW-FAIR and are suspended mostly on drifting jig/minnow
- Walleye/Sauger are FAIR on main lake points and breaks off flats with jig/crawler and some trolling cranks
- WhiteBass were FAIR on main lake points and off flats on spoons, inline spinners and few on small crankbaits.
McMASTER LAKE at - SNAKEDEN HOLLOW - - NW of Peoria, just 1 1/2 miles East of Victoria South off IL Route 167,
and there is a 10HP limit. 309-879-2607
* 2017 New Fish Limit Regs (All Lakes) = Large or Smallmouth Bass . .
. Protected Slot Length Limit; 14-18 inches .. 3 Fish Daily Harvest Limit
And New this year At Lake McMaster: Anglers are allowed 1 Muskie per day of either 36-42" in length or over 48".
This Slot Limit will allow the angler to Harvest a 36-42" Muskie.
REND LAKE -
- While planning to make a Fishing trip to Rend Lake,
make sure to look into a stay at the new
Gun Creek Fin, Fur & Feathers Sportsmens Club and ask about guided fishing too..
- Bass were FAIR-GOOD at times on plastics, spinnerbaits and crankbaits around timber
- Bluegills are Fairly GOOD on wax worms and crickets
- Catfish are GOOD on Hoss´s Hawg Bait dip bait along breaks and channel edges.
- Crappie are FAIR-GOOD with most out in 12 - 14 foot water
- - Here is latest Fishing Report from US Army Corps who says:
- - "Please fish safely! Always buckle up your life jacket on the water! " And:
- Please use these collection stations
for recycling monofilament fishing line
provided at various locations around Lake.
For more info feel free to contact
the Rend Lake Project Office at
11981 Rend City Road, Benton, IL 62812
or by phone at 618-724-2493
SHABBONA LAKE -
- - This Lake has a 10-horsepower limit.
- - - Park hours thru October 6:00 AM - 10:00 PM
- - Not much reported this week...
- Bass were FAIR-GOOD on plastics, crankbaits with some on topwater
- Bluegills were FAIR-GOOD at times along shoreline areas
- Catfish were FAIR on most baits.
- Crappie were little SLOW out around cribs
SPRING LAKE (South & North) - Just south of Pekin off Manito Blacktop, 5 miles northwest of Manito,
and there is a 25HP limit. (309-968-7135)
- Bluegills were FAIR o wax worm s and part crawler
- Catfish are FAIR on shad and dip baits
- Crappie were FAIR-SLOW on small jigs/minnows
- - - - SOME ILLINOIS POWER PLANT LAKES - - - -
BALDWIN LAKE - Just north of Baldwin off Route 154. - site Office 618-785-2555
--- There is a 50hp motor limit
-- Hours April 16 - Oct 31: 6:00 AM to 9:00 PM
- Bass were SLOW-FAIR
- Bluegills were FAIR-GOOD on wax worms and part crawlers
- Catfish were FAIR and better in mornings on cut baits
- Crappie were SLOW with few reported from deep on minnows.
- Report of a few Smallmouth Bass caught recently
BRAIDWOOD LAKE -
-- Daily Hours will be 6 am - 8:00 pm through June 11 th
- Bass were FAIR in AM on plastics and crankbaits and some on topwater along areas of rock
- Catfish are FAIR on most baits
CLINTON LAKE - Three miles east of Clinton off Route 10 or 54 Ph 217/935-8722.
* 2017 New Fish Limit Regs = Walleye . . . 3 Fish Daily Harvest Limit . . 18 inch Minimum Length Limit
Blue or Channel Catfish . . . 10 Fish Daily Harvest Limit, singly or in the aggregate
- Bass were FAIR-GOOD on plastics, small crankbaits and spinnerbait on points, around laydowns and rock
- Bluegill were FAIR-GOOD on wax worms and red worms
- Catfish are GOOD on most baits and shad gut early or late in day
- White Bass are FAIR in mornings on jig/twisters, small spinners and flashy lures - watch for surface action
Walleyes are SLOW with few on jigs off flats.
** For Catfish, Contact Matt Lamb of Clinton Lake Catfish Guide Service to book a
Catfish catching trips this year. Call Matt @ 217-855-8406
or on FB Clintonlakecatfishguideservice * Tell him Larry told you to call..
- Guide Terry Davis shared this:
"Tyler and his dad got to go home with a 3 man limit
for their fish fry on Father's Day. Crappie fishing is
still good. We are catching a ton of fish right now.
Having to pick through the little ones but plenty of
keepers to fill the livewell with. Switched back over to
Glacier & Silver Sparkle in Bobby Garland Baby Shad
to imitate the shad in the lake. Again we caught fish
at various depths (6ft-15ft) the cloud cover kept them
suspended higher for a little longer Saturday but
once the sun popped out we went out deep and
the bite was just as good."
or call Terry @ 309-212-6817 for more details.
A PORTION OF LAKE FROM ABOUT IP POINT UP TO 54 BRIDGE IS CLOSED
- Check with Joe of Ol´ Joe´s Bait and Tackle for latest reports
and ALL your fishing needs
* Ol´ Joe says the Bait Shop is FOR SALE as well as the Building next door,
just give him a call at 217-935-6244 if interested..!
As of May 11th ? - The dock at West Side boat access remains Closed pending repairs.
* Places to stay while at Clinton Lake - the Holiday Inn Express hotel,
the newest hotel in Le Roy, IL
AND - Days Inn in Le Roy, IL both Just off I-74 between Bloomington and Champaign,
only 17 minutes from Clinton Lake. Make your reservations today (309) 962-4439 or (309) 962-4700
COFFEEN LAKE - SE of Hillsboro off Rt 127 or south of Coffeen off Rt 185,
site office 217-537-3351.
-- There is a 25hp motor limit.
- Ken tells us: "Coffeen Lake is at full pool. Main lake water temperatures are in the upper 80's.
The hot water arm is in the mid 90's. The water color is stained.
Bass fishing was Fair on a blue/white Bandit crankbait. Not much action on other lures. "
- Bluegills were FAIR on crickets and wax worms.
- Catfish were FAIR-GOOD on dip baits, liver and crawlers.
- Crappie remain SLOW
LAKE SPRINGFIELD - At Springfield off I-55 Exit 94 and go the east.
- Bass were FAIR on plastics and crankbaits.
- Catfish are FAIR-GOOD on shad and dip baits.
- Crappie were FAIR-SLOW on jig/minnows
- White Bass are FAIR on jigs/twisters or blade baits
** AND a side NOTE: Big Reds Bait and Tackle now has The Original Vanilla Bug Spray to repel those biting gnats, flies and mosquitoes..
--- Check with Trevor at Big Reds Bait and Tackle for your bait and current reports
at 2193 Stevenson Drive in Springfield 62703 just a mile west from the lake dam.
You can call them at (217) 679-1800
** While there, Check out his New baits and the KRAZY BLADES
- One of the best White Bass, Walleye and Crappie Lures made ..! BigRedsBait.com
LaSALLE LAKE -
Daily Hours reportedly will be 6 a.m. - sunset
- Few Bass recently.?
- Catfish were FAIR-GOOD on most baits
** All fishermen must be off the lake by closing time each day. Hours may be adjusted due to staffing issues,
so visitors should call ahead 815-357-1608 to confirm operating hours.
Visitors should adhere to all rules, regulations and direction from staff.
Orange windsocks are located on interior dikes throughout the lake.
When the windsocks are erect, wind speeds are 14 mph or above and no boats are to be launched;
boats on the lake should find calm water and get off the lake when safe to do so.
NEWTON LAKE - 16-17 miles southeast of Effingham off Route 33.
- Bass were FAIR on plastics, spinnerbaits and crankbaits with some on topwater baits
with few reports of catches on minnows too.
- Catfish were FAIR on crawlers, cut bait and dip baits
- Crappie remain SLOW
- WhiteBass are FAIR-GOOD on inline spinners and some jigs/twisters mostly in mornings..
POWERTON LAKE - One mile south of Pekin off Route 29 along Manito Blacktop.
---- site Office 309-968-7135
-- SUMMER HOURS (May 1st - Sept. 30th): 6am-8pm
** For guided Catfish trips on Powerton Lake you can contact Jason of Hill´s Guide Service
217-855-2692 - or facebook.com/hillsguideservice
SANGCHRIS LAKE - South of Springfield off I-55 Exit 82 - go east on Route 104 about 10 miles.
-- Lake has a 25HP limit, Lake site office # 217/498-9208 from 8 a.m.- 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.
-- Hot weather has limited fishing & reports - Also, not sure if power plant is still down.?
- Bass were FAIR on plastics, spinnerbaits and topwater along weed edge early and/or late in day
- Bluegills are FAIR
- Catfish were FAIR on most baits
- Crappie were little SLOW recently and deep..
--- Check with Trevor at Big Red´s Bait and Tackle for current reports
at 2193 Stevenson Drive in Springfield on your way to lake..
- LINKS or Other Lake Reports outside Central Illinois. -
- For Chicago area and southern to central Wisconsin Fishing Reports check out the
Chicago Sun-Times Outdoors section by Dale Bowman
- MARK TWAIN LAKE in Missouri
---Check Out The Fishing Reports from the Good people at South Fork Resort
- NORFORK LAKE in Arkansas
For current reports or to set up a fishing trip (we would recommend),
check STR Outfitters at www.stroutfitters.com
--- View STR Outfitters Facebook page click here
for real time up to date each day or read Tom´s fishing blog here at http://stroutfitters.blogspot.com
If you are thinking of Fishing or Hunting this year
Check the Reports & specials from Tom Reynolds of STR Outfitters
- Read about our Outdoor Writers/Broadcasters Visit a few years ago at
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