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Fish Ohio Report, 9-17-14

September 19, 2014

Inland Lakes and Rivers


Griggs Reservoir (387 acres; Franklin County) - Largemouth and smallmouth bass are being caught in this Columbus reservoir. Largemouth bass: can be caught on spinner baits, crankbaits or plastic tubes. Try targeting the bait fish concentrations. Smallmouth bass: are becoming active along rock outcrops, north of the island and below the dam. Use crankbaits in a crayfish pattern and spinners. Crappie: will increase feeding as water temperatures fall. Target submerged woody structure using minnows or jigs suspended by a float.

Article Photos

Logan Maggard with a hog largemouth bass.

Hoover Reservoir (2818 acres; Delaware and Franklin counties) - Channel catfish: are still being caught in the north end. Try using shrimp, night crawlers or prepared baits for the best catches. Saugeye: are starting to get active. Troll spinners and worm harnesses along points and across flats leading to deeper water. Keep the baits very close to the bottom. Early morning and evening bites can be good. Largemouth bass: Target the backs of coves and where bait fish are concentrated using crankbaits, spinner baits and creature baits.


Barton Lake (19 acres; Williams County) - Largemouth Bass: Anglers have been having success fishing for largemouth bass in the evenings. Try using top-water lures in the top 2-feet of the water column around the peninsula at the south side of the lake. A ramp for small boats is available. There is a limit of 10 sunfish area wide, and a 3 bass split limit. (Anglers may only keep two bass less than 14-inches and 1 bass 20-inches or larger.)

Fact Box


Portage Lakes (Summit County) - Redear and bluegill sunfish can be caught from shore by anglers using pin-mins with wax worms under bobbers. Anglers fishing from boats should use small jigs tipped with small pieces of night crawlers.

Findlay Reservoir #2 (Hancock County) - Findlay Reservoir #2 is located southwest of Findlay on Township Road 207. There is a full boat ramp at the southern shore of the reservoir. Yellow perch are starting to bite. Look for bottom structure where yellow perch will concentrate. The best baits include minnows and red worms fished near the bottom with spreaders or crappie rigs. Fall is also great time to hook into some walleye. Anglers should try fishing along the shoreline during the morning and evening hours. There is a 9.9 horsepower limit on the reservoir.


Portage Lakes (Summit County) - Redear and bluegill sunfish can be caught from shore by anglers using pin-mins with wax worms under bobbers. Anglers fishing from boats should use small jigs tipped with small pieces of night crawlers. Fish typically measure in the 7-to-9 inch range.

Leesville Lake (Carroll County) - Catfish: are biting on chicken livers and shad. Most anglers are doing well fishing the few flats that can be found on Leesville Lake when the catfish come into the shallows to feed. Peak fishing times are from dusk to midnight.


Monroe Lake (39 acres; Monroe County) - Largemouth bass: Cooler, fall temperatures will trigger fish to start moving back into shallow water areas. Try using traditional soft plastic baits and crankbaits, or try night crawlers and plastic worms rigged Texas-style. Bluegill: Use wax worms suspended under a bobber at 3-to-4 feet. Channel catfish: Try using chicken livers, night crawlers or prepared catfish baits. There is a 10 horsepower limit for outboard motors.

Muskingum River (Muskingum, Morgan and Washington counties) - Channel catfish: Try using cut bait, bluegill, chicken livers or night crawlers fished on the bottom in the current. Look for deep holes and sand or gravel bars. Flathead catfish: Most anglers prefer using live baits, such as chubs and sunfish. When fishing in the tail waters, try fishing deep holes just below fast to moderate current. Carp: are generally active in the fall. Try casting dough balls or corn. Saugeye: Use a variety of jigs and concentrate efforts below any of the 10 lock and dams located between Dresden and Marietta.


Adams Lake (Adams County) - Bluegills: have been biting recently around the riprap shorelines and along the edges of lily pads. Try using small jigs tipped with wax worms fished just 1-to-2 feet under a small bobber.

Buck Creek State Park (Clark County) - Channel catfish: are being caught by anglers using chicken livers, cut bait or earthworms as bait. Fish the bait slowly along the bottom and into deep pools. Fishing is good near the mouth of Buck Creek. Keep the bait greater than 10-feet deep.

Cowan Lake (Clinton County) - Channel catfish: are being caught by anglers using chicken livers, cut bait, shrimp or earthworms as bait. Cast from the pier area. Keep the bait off the bottom and about 3-to-6 feet deep.


Racine Dam Tailwater (Meigs County) - Striped bass and hybrid striped bass: Try using spoons and other minnow imitating lures or live skipjack fished throughout the area. Catfish: can also be caught on skipjack, so don't be surprised if you catch one here. Skipjack: This popular baitfish will bite on just about anything, but anglers in this area generally have success with white grubs or three-hook sabiki rigs.

Brown County - Flathead catfish: have been hitting cut baits, chicken livers and night crawlers fished on the bottom. Smallmouth bass: Try fishing with tube baits or crankbaits. Hybrid striped bass: Try using a jig and twister tipped with a minnow.

Lake Erie

Regulations to Remember:

The daily bag limit for walleye on Ohio waters of Lake Erie is 6 fish per angler. The minimum size limit for walleye is 15 inches.

The daily bag limit for yellow perch is 30 fish per angler on all Ohio waters of Lake Erie.

The trout and salmon daily bag limit is 2 fish per angler. The minimum size limit is 12 inches.

The daily bag limit for black bass (largemouth and smallmouth bass) in Ohio waters of Lake Erie is 5 fish per angler. The minimum size limit for black bass is 14 inches.

Western Basin


Where: Walleye fishing has been slow in the western basin. The best reports have come from northwest of North Bass Island and north of Kelleys Island.

How: Anglers trolling are using worm harnesses with inline weights, divers or bottom bouncers, and spoons pulled behind divers. Anglers casting are using mayfly rigs or are drifting with bottom bouncers and worm harnesses.

Yellow Perch

Where: Yellow perch fishing has been good based on number of fish, but the size of fish has been running small, including a lot of throwbacks. The best spots have been off Little Cedar Point, south of West Sister Island, 3 miles north of the Toledo water intake, Rattlesnake Island, east of Middle Bass Island, the green buoy off Catawba State Park, around "F" can of the Camp Perry firing range, southeast of Kelleys Island, northwest of Kelleys Island, and off the Marblehead lighthouse.

How: Perch spreaders with shiners fished near the bottom produce the most fish.

Smallmouth Bass

Where: Smallmouth bass are being caught around Middle Bass Island and Kelleys Island.

How: Smallmouth bass have been caught on tube jigs, crankbaits or jerkbaits.

Largemouth bass

Where: Largemouth bass are being caught in the harbors and bays in the western basin and also along the main lake shoreline around Catawba.

How: Largemouth bass are being caught on crankbaits spinner baits and soft plastics.

Central Basin


Where: Fishing has been good 4 miles north of Vermilion. Excellent fishing has been reported in 68-to-74 feet of water north of Ashtabula. Some fish are starting to move in closer to shore.

How: Anglers are using planer boards or Dipsy Divers with worm harnesses, spoons and stick baits.

Yellow perch

Where: Anglers are catching perch off St. Anthony's at Lorain. Excellent perch fishing has been reported in 38-to-40 feet of water north of Edgewater Park and downtown Cleveland, in 34-to-48 feet of water northeast of Gordon Park and off Bratenahl, in 38-to-60 feet of water north-northeast of Fairport Harbor, and in 48-to-67 feet of water north of Conneaut. Fishing from shore has been spotty off the E. 55th Street and E. 72nd Street piers in Cleveland and at the long pier off Mentor Headlands.

How: Perch spreaders with shiners fished near the bottom produce the most fish.

Smallmouth bass and Largemouth Bass

Where: Fishing has been good in the harbor areas in Cleveland, Fairport Harbor, Geneva, Ashtabula and Conneaut.

How: Anglers are using crank baits, soft plastic lures with jigs, drop shot rigs with leeches, and soft craws.

White bass

Where: Anglers fishing from boats are catching white bass north of Cleveland, Eastlake and Fairport Harbor in 39-to-44 feet of water. Watch for the gulls feeding on the surface and the white bass will be below the school of emerald shiners. Anglers fishing from shore are catching fish off the piers in Cleveland, Eastlake and Grand River, with the evenings being the best. It is always hard to predict when the fishing will pick up for white bass.

How: Anglers are using small spoons, spinners and agitators with jigs tipped with twister tails.


Where: Anglers are trolling and casting in harbors, break walls and nearshore areas at Conneaut, Ashtabula, Geneva, Fairport Harbor, Eastlake and Rocky River.

How: Anglers are using spoons, spinners, and small crank baits either by casting or trolling. More information is available on our Lake Erie steelhead fishing report page: Steelhead Fishing Reports

The Lake Erie water temperature is 64 off Toledo and 68 off Cleveland according to the nearshore marine forecast.

Anglers are encouraged to always wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved personal flotation device while boating.



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