In late fall highlight species targeted by anglers along the Rocky River, other area streams, and Lake Erie include steelhead, yellow perch, walleye, and panfish. The Rocky River is low and clear, but some much needed rain is in the forecast. To monitor the most recent river water level and temperature you can check the following links: <Rocky River flow gage data><Chagrin River flow gage data>. When Lake Erie hasn't been kicked up the steelhead bite from shore has been fair this week at Edgewater and E55th, the yellow perch and walleye night walleye fishing after dark has been good.
The Rocky River and other area streams are low and clear this week need rain, which we look to be getting into the holiday weekend. Although some anglers reported patches of good steelhead fishing, things have overall been fair in accordance with the conditions, with accumulations of leaves making things even more challenging. The big schools of minnows formerly in the river by the marina last week have vacated the area. When conditions are not too rough, the Lake Erie shoreline steelhead bite has been fair at Edgewater and E55th this week. These areas fish best with a southerly or light north wind. Suspending a jig tipped with maggots or a minnow under a float or casting a spoon (ie Little Cleo or KO Wobbler) or spinner (ie Vibrax or RoosterTail) at these locations are as good a bet as any for connecting with a lakefront steelhead trout. Steelhead fishing will only improve as we receive more precipitation- hopefully into the weekend.
The Ohio & Erie Canal fishing area was stocked with 1,000 pounds of rainbow trout, 600 pounds of big channel catfish, and 1,000 smaller catfish (the latter by ODNR Division of Wildlife) in mid-ctober. The first round of winter trout stocking at our inland lakes will take place around mid-December. Anglers can keep posted to the Fishing Blog for updates on that.
The yellow perch bite has been decent off Cleveland and Euclid this week when the lake has behaved. Anglers are using perch spreaders and emerald shiners in 30-40 feet of water, with quite a few anglers focusing on the east end of the Cleveland breakwall. The perch size has been very good. A few steelhead, white bass, and walleye have been bonus catches for perch anglers, as well. Night walleye fishing along the Cleveland shoreline was good this week as lake conditions permitted, with a number of great size fish entered into the Fall Brawl tournament recently. Walleye anglers are casting or trolling Perfect Ten and Husky Jerk crankbaits around E72nd after dark. 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>.
The "King of Cleveland Corned Beef" makes a Special Catch. Slyman's Restaurant is a Cleveland icon, having served up their famous corned beef sandwiches for 50 years. Although I have yet to meet him, a number of friends and co-workers have informed me that co-owner Moe Slyman loves fishing in Cleveland Metroparks. Apparently he even has photos of steelhead trout he's caught proudly pinned up behind the deli counter. And it's a family affair, with Moe's wife and 16 and 18 year old daughters often joining him. So I was pleased to get an excited call from Moe yesterday claiming to have caught and released a colorful one pound brook trout at Rockcliff Springs on the Rocky River. Privately, I was skeptical since this would be exceedingly rare, figuring he may have misidentified a brown trout or something (in my line of work I receive fish misidentifications routinely from anglers). I asked him if he had any photos to confirm and he texted several to me immediately, and low and behold it was indeed a brook trout in the images (see photo below)! Being a conservation minded angler and realizing the rarity of the fish, Moe did not even remove it from the water as he unhooked, photographed, and released the fish (kudos on that). Brook trout are a state threatened species, and there is even a very small population in a protected area in the upper Rocky River watershed. In this case, I suspect the gorgeous male fish in the photo was a trout club escapee from further west that ventured into the Rock, but I really can't say for sure. By any means, Moe made an especially rare and special catch that illustrates you just never know what could be biting on the end of your line in the Rocky River!
Updates from the desk of the Park Manager. Rick Ditch, the Rocky River Reservation Park Manager, wanted me to pass along a couple of updates. All but one launch/recovery dock have been pulled at the marina. The remaining courtesy dock will be left in as long as reasonably possible depending on weather. It will likely be pulled in mid-December. Also, he wanted to let folks know that the burn barrel at Morley Ford will likely be installed sometime next week.
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 .
Ed has had a great week of fishing, having caught a bunch of Rocky River steelhead and a bonus Wallace Lake bass. But yesterday was especially special for him. He shared "After doing so well on Monday, I had to take my girls out today to see if they could get a steelhead. My 7 year old landed her first one ever, and my 11 year old caught her 2nd one ever! In an hour, about 6 hits and 3 fish landed on the same killer olive jig". The jig he's been using (pictured) is essentially an olive wooly bugger style from Brad's Jigs and he's been tipping them with several waxworms or maggots (photos courtesy of Ed Schmitt).
Skilled young angler Adam landed steelhead on his second and third drifts by the marina on Sunday (photos courtesy of Mike Flachbart).
Here is the Rocky River brook trout described in the highlight section in the report above (photo courtesy of Moe Slyman).
Aaron caught this fine steelhead at Edgewater Park on Friday using a jig tipped with waxworm suspended under a float. He would like to thank the Good Samaratin who netted it for him (photo courtesy of Michell Genkelman).
Ryan made a great catch of walleye casting from shore (photos courtesy of Ryan Simmons).
Staff display a few nice largemouth bass sampled this week while removing non-native carp from Isaac Lake, a wildlife sanctuary. In two days over the past two weeks almost 700 carp were removed in an effort to restore the lake. Although the lake does not allow fishing, sportfish are routinely transferred from the lake to public fishing areas.
Strawberry Pond in North Chagrin Reservation is a "work in progress" and is currently being dredged to restore the pond as a nice fishing asset for eastside anglers. The lake has filled in with sediment since the 1970's.
Lots of bruiser walleye over 10 pounds were checked into the Fall Brawl tournament at Erie Outfitters this week. Most have been caught at night along the Cleveland and Lorain shorelines. The tournament ends on December 4th. Check out locally owned Erie Outfitters for all your walleye and steelhead fishing needs (photos courtesy of Craig Lewis at Erie Outfitters).
When the lake hasn't been too rough this week customers on the Linda Mae party boat out of Wildwood Park are making some nice catches of jumbo perch punctuated by some bonus steelhead, white bass, and walleye (photos courtesy of Wildwood Marina).
The lake was displaying her full power along the CLE shoreline during strong north winds on Sunday (photo courtesy of Chuck Slusarczyk Jr).
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, email@example.com (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, firstname.lastname@example.org www.steelheadguide.com
- #19-005 Jeffery Liskay, Silver Fury Guide Service & Schools, email@example.com (440) 781-7536
- #19-006 Mario Chance, Chagrin River Outfitters, firstname.lastname@example.org (440) 247-7110
- #19-007 Justin Pribanic, Chagrin River Outfitters, email@example.com (440) 247-7110
- #19-008 Josh Trammell, Steelhead Alley Outfitters, www.steelheadalleyoutfitters.com (888) 453-5899
- #19-009 Nathan Miller, Steelhead Alley Outfitters, www.steelheadalleyoutfitters.com (888) 453-5899
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.