Hello, fall!!

While Lake Erie temperatures are still in the high 70s, and it’s not quite time for the Fall Brawl, you can at least start thinking about your fall walleye catch. Here’s what you can catch right now.

See the full Ohio Department of Natural Resources fish report here.

Western Basin

Walleye 
Where: Fishing has been average, with the best reports coming from the islands and offshore of Cedar Point, Huron, and Vermil

Olivia caught this trout in Wallace Lake. (John Hall, via Cleveland Metroparks)

ion in 25 to 45 feet of water. Anglers are reporting limits of 17 to 22-inch fish.

How: Anglers trolling small spoons behind divers have been doing the best, from 60 to 120 feet back depending on where the fish are in the water column. Orange and purple have been working well. Reports have been trickling in of fish being caught in shallow water on shallow diving crankbaits. Anglers have also reported doing well on worm harnesses behind bottom bouncers or divers.

Yellow Perch 
Where: Fishing for yellow perch has been average with the inconsistent weather patterns. The best reports have come from south of Green Island in 25 to 30 feet of water, and near the Camp Perry “D” can.

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

Black Bass  
Where: Anglers fishing for largemouth have been doing exceptionally well in the Portage River mouth, East and West Harbors, and Sandusky Bay, as well as picking up the occasional fish around Catawba. Smallmouth fishing has been good, with anglers targeting 8 to 20 feet of water near Kelleys Island and Middle Bass in 10 to 12 feet of water.

How: Texas rigged soft plastic and wacky worms usually produce well for largemouth bass. For anglers targeting smallmouths, tubes and drop-shot rigs have been working well, as well as weighted wacky worms.

Catfish  
Where: Anglers targeting catfish are doing extremely well in Sandusky and Maumee bays. Shoreline fishing opportunities are available from the Jackson Street Pier, Shoreline Park, Battery Park, or Meigs Street Pier in Sandusky, and the Sandusky Bay Bridge access.

How: Shrimp is a popular bait in Sandusky and Maumee bays, though fish have also taken on shiners, nightcrawlers, and stink bait. Most anglers fish a Carolina rig or three-way rig. Fish can also be taken below a bobber suspended just off the bottom.

Central Basin

Walleye 
Where: Good fishing reported in 50 to 60 feet of water northwest of Gordon Park, and in 60 to 70 feet of water northwest and northeast of Wildwood Park. Excellent fishing continues with limits reported in 71 to 78 feet of water north-northwest of Geneva, and in 58 to 74 feet of water north-northeast of Ashtabula. Fish are suspended, and anglers are targeting fishing depths of 50 to 60 feet while trolling.

How: Walleye have been caught by trolling crankbaits, spoons, and worm harnesses with divers. Good colors to try are silver, white, orange, black, pink and purple, and copper. Anglers fishing from shore are having the best luck in the evenings catching fish using spinners and stick baits.

Yellow Perch  
Where: Fishing has been good in 44 feet of water north-northwest of Fairport Harbor, and in 48 feet of water north of Conneaut.

How: Anglers are fishing from the bottom up to 5 cranks off the bottom. Try different depths near the bottom until you locate the fish. Use minnows on spreaders. Fish have also been taken on maggots. The best reports have been from the late afternoon and into the evening.

Smallmouth Bass  
Where: Fishing has been good in 15 to 22 feet of water around harbor areas in Cleveland, Fairport Harbor, Ashtabula and Conneaut.

How: Anglers are using drop shot rigs with crayfish and leeches, small spoons, and night crawlers.

Catfish  
Where: Fishing for channel catfish has been good on the Grand River, Fairport Pier, and Painesville Township Park Pier.

How: Anglers are using live baits such as night crawlers, leeches and shrimp.

Steelhead Trout  
Where: Anglers are picking up steelhead while trolling for walleye off Geneva and Ashtabula in 71 to 78 feet of water.

How: Try setting your lures down a bit deeper than for walleye.

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