In spring, highlight species targeted by anglers in Cleveland Metroparks include steelhead trout, stocked trout, and panfish. The rivers are on the rise with more rain in the weekend forecast. To monitor the most recent river water level, temperature, and clarity (turbidity) you can check the following links: <Rocky River USGS flow gage data> <Chagrin River USGS flow gage data> <Rocky River NEORSD station with turbidity>. Trout are scheduled to be stocked by ODNR at Hinckley and Shadow lakes tomorrow (3/31).
The Rocky and Chagrin rivers are on the rise and we have more rain in the weekend forecast to add to that. Weekend prospects will be dependant upon how much precipitation we recieve over the next few days, but streams will likely be stained and elevated. Steelhead spawning activity in the shallower riffle areas was i high gear this past week. In stained water, a nickel size brightly colored spawn sack drifted under a float/bobber is a top producer. for dirty water fly fishers, a big contrasting colored Egg Sucking Leech (or similar streamer) is a good option. As the water clears, live minnows, jigs tipped with maggots or waxworm, salmon egg mimicking beads, and various flies (eggs, nymphs, and streamers) will also take a good share of the fish. Medium size silvery spoons, spinners, and small to medium crankbaits can be worth a try, as well, and require less specialized tackle for newer steelhead anglers. The unstocked Cuyahoga River and smaller area tributaries have also been producing stray steelhead.
ODNR is stocking trout tomorrow (3/31) at Hinckley Lake (2,500 fish) and Shadow Lake (500 fish). These fish will range from 10-14" in length. Trout also remain at Wallace, Ledge, Judge's, and Ranger lakes. Trout hit well on PowerBait fished near the bottom, jigs tipped with a few maggots/waxworms suspended below a bobber, minnows, and smaller spoons and spinners.
Spring stocking of trout in the East Branch Rocky River began on Friday March 17 (600 lbs) and occurred again on Monday March 20 (600 lbs more). These fish are stocked at about a half dozen locations in Millstream Run Reservation between Royalton Road (Route 82) and the river ford (low bridge crossing) just south of Wallace Lake. Trout will then continue to be stocked regularly through the end of April, and we hope to stock again early to mid next week. Stay posted to this report for the latest fish stocking details.
Please note the current seasonal trout regulations: Lake Erie and all streams 2/day minimum size 12" (this includes steelhead), 3/day no size limit at Wallace, Ledge, Judge's and Ranger lakes, and 5/day no size limit at Shadow Lake and Ohio & Erie Canal.
Barbie Rod Steelhead Derby Recap. What a fun day we had Saturday! Despite less than ideal fishing conditions (elevated and muddy) we had 90 competitors in the 4th Annual Barbie Rod Steelhead Derby and fish were caught! Winners were: 1st- Max Seredniy (28.0"), 2nd- Andy Wahl (27.25"), and 3rd- David Paramushchuk (27.0"). Mike Santarelli won the "coveted" Biggest Sucker award and 12 lucky folks won great raffle packages. In the end we raised a whopping $5,120 for our park Fishing Fund! Once again, we could not have done it with our great <sponsors> and volunteers, including: Mark Warren (lead event coordinator), Greg Young (donation MVP), Ray Lancaster, Travis "Woody" Males, Eric Phillips, Matthew Phillips, and Paula Phillips. And a big thank you to Andy Wahl, who made a great <YouTube video> chronicling the event. He even documented catching his 2nd place fish entirely on film. Here's til next year, fellow anglers!
From the Desk of Park Manager Rick Ditch. Rocky River Park Manager has a few items to pass along. First, one courtesy boat dock has been installed at the Rocky River boat ramps. We aim to get the remainder in by the end of April, weather permitting. Also, anglers should not be parking along the berm off the parkway. With the ground being very wet and soft, quite a bit of damage has been done (that his crews need to then repair insead of getting other work done). You may be ticketed for parking anywhere other than a designated parking lot for this reason. Thank you in advance for respecting his request.
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.
Chris shared "My son, Brian Rossman, caught these two rainbow trout out of the East Branch Rocky River despite some high, muddy water on Wednesday, 3/29/17. He was using Power Bait with a sinker. He had a good trout season, catching some at Ledge and Judge's lakes also." (photos courtesy of Chris Rosscom).
Nick caught this Wallace Lake crappie on a white twister tail under a float (photo courtesy of Ted).
Ryan scored a gorgeous largemouth bass in a local pond with his dad this week (photo courtesy of John Burkhart).
Rachel shared "Last week, my dad and I took my friend's son Jack to Wallace to fish for trout. Jack lives in Shaker Heights, so this was his first time at Wallace/fishing on the west side. It was a hard day, but Jack caught the only fish we bought in that day! So here is one picture of Jack with his little trout & big smile. Between you and I, my dad actually hooked it, but his arm cramped up, so he asked Jack to bring it in ;) The other pictures are from this past Saturday (my birthday!). My dad and I went to Wallace again; dad got 4 trout and I got one. Pink and orange trout worms were the trick Saturday." (photos courtesy of Rachel Kemp).
I was fishing the Rock on Sunday afternoon and ran into this young man fighting a great steelhead by Puritas Road. As he landed the fish I was chatting with his proud father who told me that his son quit the high school track team because it was cutting into his fishing time. Nice job, young man!
Robby caught this beast buck steelie in the Rock this week (photo courtesy of Robbie Adams).
John caught this beautiful chrome hen swinging flies in the Chagrin River. As the Fly Fishing Manager at Orvis Cleveland John wanted to let folks know that their free Fly Fishing 101 classes are starting this month. You can sign up on the <Orvis CLE website> (photo courtesy of John Brochue).
Father and son Bill and Andy have made some great catches in the Rock recently, including a stray brown trout (photos courtesy of Bill Wahl).
The Barbie Rod Steelhead Derby on Saturday was a pile of fun despite the river being up and muddy. And steelhead were caught! Top placers in the photo above (from left to right after me) were 1st Max Seredniy (28.0"), 2nd Andy Wahl (27.25"), and 3rd David Paramushchuk (27.0"). We also raised a whopping $5,120 for our park Fishing Fund (photos courtesy of Ray Lancaster & Eric Phillips).
Kerry was among the perseverant contestants that landed a steelhead on a kiddie rod on Saturday morning (photo courtesy of Kerry Rhodes).
Not only did Andy Wahl take 2nd place and have a great story about how it unfolded, but he caught it all on video! Kudos to Andy on this great <YouTube video> detailing the event and his impressive finish out of 90 contestants! (photo and video courtesy of Andy Wahl).
Out of 90 competitors, David came in a very respectable 5th place with this 25.0" steelie. A photo was captured of the fish being landed by Travis Males (photos courtesy of David Dorko).
These anglers traveled from Wauseon, OH, to fish the Rock on Saturday morning. The gentleman in the top pic caught his frst steelhead ever (pictured) his first time every trying for them! They were not in the Barbie Derby.
David caught some nice steelies this week, including an exceptionally stout buck (photos courtesy of David Dorko).
My friend Bruce from Chicago was passing through Sunday afternoon on his way home from Philly, so we hit the river for a few hours and got a few steelhead the weekend crowd left us. Bruce was marveling at the valley cliffs, which are unlike what they find on his home streams. So I took him up to Berea Falls on the East Branch Rocky. He enjoyed seeing the sandstone gorge and we even hooked a few steelies there.
On Tuesday evening I attended the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance Legislative Reception in Columbus with ODNR Law Enforcement Supervisor Dave Shinko. Picured with me here are Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof (R) and Erie County Senator Randy Gardner (R), with whom I was discussing my concerns regarding Lake Erie issues and funding for ODNR. A total of 23 legislators were in attendance to meet with sportsmen.
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>