***Monday June 15 update: Farm raised channel catfish were stocked at six locations last week: Shadow Lake, Ledge Lake, Ranger Lake, Beyer's Pond, Judge's Lake, and Oxbow Lagoon. The river is elevated and muddy from rain today, but expect the good smallmouth bass and catfish fishing to resume as the water level recedes. Walleye fishing off Cleveland has been good overall, but yellow perch fishing remains unseasonably slow.***
As we move into early summer, highlight species targeted around Cleveland Metroparks include smallmouth bass, walleye, yellow perch, largemouth bass, panfish, channel catfish, and common carp. 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>.
Smallmouth bass are typically found in the deeper, rocky pools of the river during the day in early 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). Bass of all sizes are abundant bass in the river, with a healthy number of trophy fish up to (and over) 20 inches in length available. It has been very encouraging to see most anglers releasing the larger bass recently so that these fine gamefish can be caught again. Also, note that all smallmouth bass must be released immediately if caught downstream of the Detroit Road bridge through June 26rth. Rock bass are also present in the same river areas as smallmouth, and can be caught using the same offerings listed above.
Channel catfish and large carp are also present in some of these same areas in the river, and fishing for them can be a laid back and relaxing way to enjoy some time on the water. Good numbers of channel catfish stocked in May also remain to be caught at Wallace Lake and the Ohio & Erie Canal fishing area, as well as several smaller Metroparks waters. More catfish will be stocked at various locations in June, as well. Catfishing is usually best during lower light conditions using baits such as nightcrawlers, minnows, chicken liver, and processed dough baits. A good number of larger catfish are moving into the river from Lake Erie on their spawning run. Resident channel catfish are available in the river all summer.
Some large carp (some exceeding 15 pounds) will be found in the northern river reaches throughout the month, as well. Carp can often be caught throughout the day on such bait as canned corn, carp dough baits, worms or crayfish tails. A growing contingent of fly anglers looking for a challenge are targeting carp with nymphs and crayfish imitations, as well. The key to fishing for either carp or catfish is fishing on (or very near) the river/lake bottom. In addition, freshwater drum (sheepshead), white perch, and bullhead catfish are also abundant in the northern river reaches (north of Morley Ford) in early summer. 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.
Summer means family fishing time for many folks, and panfish fit the bill perfectly for a leisurely picnic and fishing outing. Anglers seeking panfish have experienced decent fishing at most of the ponds and lakes in the Park District in the past week. Crappie, bluegill, and other sunfish species can be taken with a number of offerings, but a waxworm or redworm on a small hook (or tiny jig) suspended under a stick float and fished around a weedbed or shoreline brush is always a good choice. Wallace Lake, Shadow Lake, and Lakefront Reservation are just a few of many places in the Park to wet a line for various panfish species. Largemouth bass fishing is often best in Wallace and Hinckley lakes, although bass can be found in most park waters.
Rock bass, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, crappie, freshwater drum and sunfish species are biting along the Cleveland shoreline of Lake Erie on offerings such as tube jigs and live minnows. Yellow perch and walleye are biting off of Cleveland, as well. 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>.
Rocky River Clean-Up Saturday June 6. The annual Rocky River volunteer clean-up will be held Saturday June 6 from 9:00-noon, to be followed immediately by a hot dog cookout to thank our valued volunteers. This is a collaborative effort between caring citizens, Rocky River Watershed Council, Cuyahoga Soil and Water Conservation District, local groups (such as Ohio Central Basin Steelheaders and Boy Scouts) and Cleveland Metroparks. We will be meeting at 9:00am sharp at the picnic shelter at Scenic Park (near the marina) to form into groups and discuss our plan of attack to clean-up the river. All are welcome at this family/kid friendly event, and don?�+t forget to come dressed to possibly get a bit wet and muddy.
Boating & Fishing Fest at East 55th Marina on Saturday June 13. The free Boating & Fishing Fest will be held Saturday June 13th at East 55th Marina from 11:00am-6:00pm. Enjoy a day of fishing talks from the likes of D'Arcy Egan and Carl "Big Daddy" Bachtel (among others), boating info, fishing for kids, boat rides, food, music, and more! More info on the event can be found <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 firstname.lastname@example.org .
Lauren caught this spunky smallmouth bass at E72nd at Lakefront Reservation (photo courtesy of Brian Katigbak).
Eddy displays a quality Wallace Lake largemouth bass (photo courtesy of Eddy Repjar).
Ron shows off a Rocky River smallmouth bass that anyone would be proud to catch (photo courtesy of Ron Orvis).
Congratulations to Lisa on catching her Fish Ohio walleye (photo courtesy of Dave McCoskey).
Russ displays a fine Wallace Lake bass specimen (photo courtesy of Russ Ring).
A female angler about to kiss a catfish to turn it into a prince! Keep posted to the fishing report for fish stockings, including more catfish, throughout June (photo courtesy of Vickie Neale).
Tony with a beautiful Cleveland walleye caught "old school" drift fishing with an Erie Dearie lure (photo courtesy of Anthony Loshiavo).
Lee caught some gorgeous smallmouth fly fishing the Rocky River (photos courtesy of Lee Geiselman).
What do fish professionals do on their day off? GO FISHING! The wind kicked up but it didn't keep Scott Heidrich (commercial saltwater aquarium specialist) and Eugene Braig (Director of the OSU Extension Aquatic Ecosystems program) from enjoying some Cleveland rock bass and sheepshead while I expended my effort just controlling the boat in a strong breeze.
Mike caught a cool golden rainbow trout in Wallace Lake (photo courtesy of Mike Reed).
PJ had a day to remember fishing from his kayak at Wallace Lake. He landed 41 largemouth bass, including 6 on his first 10 casts! He lost one estimated at 4 pounds next to his boat, and observed an estimated 6 pounder that was tight lipped (photos courtesy of PJ Fillipowicz).
We have salvaged lots of fantastic sportfish from a small lake being drained in Aurora. The fish were distributed to public fishing areas all around Cleveland Metroparks. Thank you to EnviroScience, Aurora City Engineer, and Chagrin River Watershed Partners for recruiting us for this opportunity to enhance outr public fisheries.
My ace volunteer Steve Nyetrae won a well deserved Medical Mutual Outstanding Senior Volunteer Award. We all appreciate your dedication, Steve!
A Cleveland Walleye Madness tournament will be held on Saturday June 6. Check out www.walleyemadness.net for details (photo provided by Walleye Madness organizer).
Note: The fishing report is updated monthly in June, July, and August and weekly every other month
2017 Cleveland Metroparks Registered Fishing Guides (name, company, contact)
17-001 Mario Chance, Chagrin River Outfitters, email@example.com, (330) 984-3086
17-002 Justin Pribanic, Chagrin River Outfitters, firstname.lastname@example.org, (724) 799-5011
17-003 Joseph Beno, On The Swing, email@example.com, (440) 667-2278
17-004 Jeffery Liskay, Silver Fury Guide Service & Schools, firstname.lastname@example.org (440) 781-7536
17-005 Monte Casey, The Steelhead Guide, http://steelheadguide.com
17-006 Nathan Miller, Steelhead Alley Outfitters, http://steelheadalleyoutfitters.com
17-007 Patrick Robinson, Steelhead Alley Outfitters, http://steelheadalleyoutfitters.com
17-008 Justin Shillaci, Steelhead Alley Outfitters, http://steelheadalleyoutfitters.com
More information on Cleveland Metroparks Fishing Guide Permit requirements, including the permit application, you may check the following link: Fishing Guide Permit Program
Cleveland Metroparks Fishing Fund
Cleveland Metroparks Fishing Fund helps provide a rewarding fishing experience to Northeast Ohio anglers through the stocking of rainbow trout, channel catfish, largemouth bass, and other sport fish. The Fund also supports children's fishing derbies and creation and restoration of essential habitat in the ponds, lakes, and rivers within Cleveland Metroparks.
For more information or to make a gift to Cleveland Metroparks Fishing Fund, including a web donation option, please visit: <Fishing Fund Donations Online>