***NOTE: The Fishing Report Blog is back to regular weekly Thursday updates from September-May!*** As we begin to approach fall, highlight species targeted by anglers along the Rocky River and other area streams include smallmouth bass, carp, panfish, and channel catfish...with a watchful eye looking for the first returning steelhead trout. To monitor the most recent river water level and temperature you can check the following link: <Rocky River flow gage data> <Chagrin River flow gage data>. Lake Erie anglers are targeting yellow perch, walleye, white bass, smallmouth bass and panfish, and inland lake/pond anglers are primarily pursuing largemouth bass, channel catfish and panfish.
I have not yet confirmed any reports of early steelhead returning to Metroparks streams, although the timing is about right. The past several years I actually witnessed the first steelhead in the Rocky River from mid-late August. Early steelhead also tend show up around the river mouths and off the rocks at Edgewater Park. In the meantime, anglers are pursuing a mix of warmwater species in the streams. Smallmouth bass are typically found in the deeper, rocky pools of the river during the day in summer, and often move to the heads of such pools in the early morning and evening hours to feed actively. A dark olive or brown tube jig of about 4?�� length is one of the best producers of bass in the river. ?��Smallies?�� also bite well on live bait (ie: minnow, crayfish, and leeches), lures (ie: spinners and minnow plugs), and flies (ie: crayfish patterns, Clouser minnows, dark brown or olive sculpin or muddler minnow patterns). A few anglers have noted smallmouth numbers in the Rocky seem to be down this summer, which could be a temporary result of the very harsh winter and early spring conditions we experienced this year.
Channel catfish, carp, sheepshead and several sucker species are also present in some of these same areas in the river, especially around the marina on the Rocky, and fishing for them can be a laid back and relaxing way to enjoy some time on the water. Catfishing is usually best during lower light conditions using baits such as nightcrawlers, minnows, chicken liver, and processed dough baits. Catfish often bite best following a rain when the water is a bit murky. Carp can often be caught throughout the day on such bait as canned corn, carp dough baits, worms or crayfish tails. For the angling generalist, any of the species thus far can be effectively targeted by fishing a nightcrawler worm right on the river bottom with a sinker.
Yellow perch have been biting fairly well off the north facing breakwall at E55th Street. Anglers are using perch spreaders and live emerald shiners, which can be purchased at the bait shop right at the E55th Marina building (if hungry, the food there is excellent, as well). Boating anglers have found perch hotspots this week off Rocky River/Gold Coast in 43-46', east of the stadium in 33-40', Edgewater Park in 30', Gordon Park/E72nd Street in 26-40' and Wildwood Park in 26-40'. White bass have been providing great action for lucky anglers who encounter the schools along the Cleveland (E72nd) and Euclid shorelines of Lake Erie. An agitator/rattle bobber with trailing jig or small spoon can be a highly productive way to catch them. Rock bass, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, crappie, freshwater drum and sunfish species are also found along the Cleveland shoreline in summer and can be caught on offerings such as tube jigs, dropshot rigs and live minnows. The ODNR Division of Wildlife weekly Lake Erie fishing report can be viewed <here>. Anglers/boaters can view current lake conditions off Cleveland at the following link: <City Of Cleveland Water Intake Crib Cam>.
Dinner and a Chat: Yellow Perch. On Friday September 12 there will be a Dinner and a Chat offering focusing on yellow perch. The evening will start with a 30 minute talk (by yours truly) about yellow perch, especially catching them locally and cleaning/eating them, to be followed by a chef prepared perch dinner and lively dinner table conversation. The evening is $25 (to cover the dinner) and is from 6:30-8:00pm at Ohio & Erie Canal Reservation. These offerings make for a fun evening and opportunity to meet friendly, like-minded folks. More information and online registration can be done <here>.
If you have a photo that you would like to contribute to the fishing report, or if you have any further questions regarding fishing in the Cleveland Metroparks, you may contact Aquatic Biologist Mike Durkalec at (440) 331-8017 or email@example.com .
The Bachtel family has been enjoying the yellow perch fishing off Cleveland (photos courtesy of Carl Bachtel).
A.J. has been catching some quality Rocky River smallmouth bass on tube jigs (photos courtesy of A.J. Leonard).
"Alabama Jim" caught and released this bruiser Wallace Lake largemouth bass lately (photo courtesy of Mark Fascione).
Nate continues to enjoy the bounty of our local fisheries (photos courtesy of Nate Adams).
Keebon, posing here with his brother Justin, caught a nice largemouth bass at Edgewater Park (photo courtesy of Ranger Rich Dechant).
Doug had a nice afternoon on the Rock by the Hilliard Road bridge with his fly rod, landing 5 smallmouth and 1 largemouth bass. He caught the fish on white woolly bugger and prince nymph patterns (photos courtesy of Doug Deyo).
Dana (pictured) and Jim had a fun evening of fishing the Rock by the marina, catching 6 catfish and 2 sheepshead on shrimp (photo courtesy of Dana Demming).
Don't own a boat but want to catch some delicious yellow perch? No problem! Anglers can affordably go out on the Linda Mae headboat out of wildwood Marina in Euclid. as you can see from the photos above, fishing has been good this week. You can get information <here> or by calling (216) 481-5771 (photos courtesy of Wildwood Marina).
While collecting live carp for Zoo animal enrichment (primarily feeding the bears), we electrofished (and released) this nice bass displayed by Big Creek Park Manager Jeff DeLuca.
Thank you to the Chagrin River Salmon Association and Lowe's Heroes for installing fishing line disposal/recycling units at Wildwood Marina (photos courtesy of Tom Gilliotti).
Kyle displays a modest size, but tasty, Lake Erie perch (photo courtesy of Jeff DeLuca).
Steve displays a surprise catfish he caught at Ranger Lake while fishing for sunfish with waxworms (photo courtesy of Steve Nyetrae).
While electrofishing by the marina last week we didn't turn up any early steelhead, but did encounter plenty of catfish, sheepshead, suckers and carp...as well as a surprise goldfish. Aquarist friend Matt Pedersen from Minnesota used the image in this story with a message: <Cleveland - Where the Wild (Orange Trout) Things Are?>.
Note: The fishing report is updated monthly in June, July, and August and weekly every other month
2019 Cleveland Metroparks Registered Fishing Guides
(name, company, contact)
- #19-001 Jim Lampros, floodplainsmag.com, firstname.lastname@example.org (216) 513-6011
- #19-002 Joseph Beno, On The Swing, Joseph93935@hotmail.com (440) 667-2278
- #19-003 Daniel Bennett, Steelhead Alley Outfitters, www.steelheadalleyoutfitters.com (888) 453-5899
- #19-004 Monte Casey, The Steelhead Guide, email@example.com www.steelheadguide.com
- #19-005 Jeffery Liskay, Silver Fury Guide Service & Schools, firstname.lastname@example.org (440) 781-7536
- #19-006 Mario Chance, Chagrin River Outfitters, email@example.com (330) 984-3086
More information on Cleveland Metroparks Fishing Guide Permit requirements, including the permit application, you may check the following link: <Fishing Guide Permit Program>
Learn how you can support recreation opportunities through a donation to the Cleveland Metroparks Fishing Fund.