Fishing reports: It’s time for casting

Ice fishing has given way to open water casting in north central Iowa. Here are the latest fishing reports from the Iowa DNR:

Cedar River (above Nashua)

Open water fishing is around the corner. Large chunks of free-floating ice are causing hazardous boating conditions.

  • Walleye – Good: Use a worm hooked in a worm harness or a jig tipped with twister tail fished below the dams.
  • Channel Catfish – Fair: Anglers fishing below dams are catching catfish using a big hook loaded with nightcrawlers.

Decorah District Streams
Catchable trout stocking starts April 2. Gravel roads and parking areas are rough and mushy as the frost comes out.

  • Brook Trout – Good: Early morning is a good time to catch a brookie. Use a streamer to mimic minnows or subsurface flies like scuds or pheasant tail nymphs.
  • Brown Trout – Good: Melt water and run-off inputs drive Brown Trout into a feeding frenzy. Use small midge, caddis, or flashy streamer patterns.
  • Rainbow Trout – Good: Catch a post-spawn Rainbow Trout below a riffle. Float a feathered spinner or crankbait past a hungry mouth and hang on.

Clear Lake

Ice fishing is not recommended.

Shell Rock River (above Greene)
Water levels are rising slowly. Walleye and northern pike are starting to bite.

Winnebago River
Northern pike and walleyes are starting to bite. Try fishing the slack water below a dam or where a creek dumps in to the river. Use live chubs or crank baits.