It’s Fall Brawl time on Lake Erie!

Catch the biggest walleye in the Ohio waters of Lake Erie in the Fall Brawl and win a $100,000 boat. Anglers are making good walleye catches along the Cleveland shoreline after dark as the weather cools.  

Of course, there’s more to catch than walleye.

A growing number of steelhead have been caught this week off the breakwalls at Edgewater, East 55th Street Marina, East 72nd Street Marina, Wildwood Park, and in the northernmost river sections by the lake (especially around the Rocky River boat ramps), says Cleveland Metroparks aquatic biologist Mike Durkalec. Cast a spoon (ie Little Cleo or KO Wobbler) or spinner (ie Vibrax or RoosterTail) to connect.  Things will continue to heat up as the weather further cools, Durkalec writes in his weekly fishing report.

Bob Galvin of Cleveland comes seven days a week, at least three hours at a time, to fish for steelhead, walleye, small mouth bass, channel catfish and more. (Laura Johnston, RocktheLake)

Largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, freshwater drum, walleye, and panfish species are also available along Cleveland shoreline, said Durkalec. They can be caught on  tube jigs, dropshot rigs, crankbaits, and live bait.  “Yellow perch fishing off Cleveland continues to sputter along off Wildwood Park in 32-38 foot of water.”

Here’s the full Fish Ohio report from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

Western Basin

Where: Fishing has been fair with the best reports coming from Huron and Lorain in 30 to 50 feet of water. Anglers are reporting limits of 17 to 22-inch fish. Fish are being caught east of Kelleys Island in less than 15 feet of water as well. Fish are sporadically being caught off piers and break walls as the walleye are following baitfish closer to shore.

How: Anglers trolling small spoons behind divers have been doing the best. Anglers trolling deep diving stick baits are starting to have better success as the fish start moving nearshore during the fall chasing gizzard shad.

Yellow Perch 
Where: Fishing for yellow perch has been good. The best fishing has been south of Green Island in 30 feet of water, and “L” can of the Camp Perry Firing Range in 19 to 20 feet of water. A few good reports came from the “Sputnik” buoy near Toledo in 28 to 30 feet of water.

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

Black Bass  
Where: Fishing for largemouth bass continues to be good for anglers in the Portage River mouth, East and West harbors, and Sandusky Bay. According to a small number of reports, smallmouth fishing has been good near Toussaint Reef, Niagara Reef, and near the islands.

How: Texas rigged soft plastics and spinnerbaits have been producing well for largemouth bass on the outside of weed edges. Target smallmouth near the reefs and islands in approximately 15 feet of water using tubes, Ned rigs, and weighted worms.

Where: Fishing is starting to wind down, but a fair amount of fish are still being caught 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: Fishing with shiners and night crawlers on the bottom have been best. Most anglers fish a Carolina rig or three-way rig fished on the bottom.

Central Basin

Where: Good fishing reported in 62 feet of water northwest of Gordon Park, in 68 to 72 feet of water northwest of Fairport Harbor, in 70 to 75 feet of water north-northwest of Ashtabula, and in 70 to 75 feet of water northwest of Conneaut. 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 purple, green, orange, watermelon, black and white, and copper. Anglers fishing from shore are having the best luck in the evenings catching fish using spinners and stick baits.

Yellow Perch  
Where: Good reports have come from the Vermillion area in 26 to 31 feet of water. Prior to the recent rough lake conditions, fish were being caught in 51 to 54 feet of water northwest of Fairport Harbor, and in 50 to 60 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.

Steelhead Trout  
Where: Anglers are catching fish trolling inside the Fairport Harbor break wall and in the Grand River. Anglers fishing from shore are catching fish off the Fairport Harbor break wall and the Painesville Township Pier.

How:  The best baits have been small spoons and jigs, tipped with maggots, fished under a bobber.