In fall highlight species targeted by anglers in Cleveland Metroparks include steelhead, walleye, yellow perch, and landlocked coho salmon (the latter recently stocked in Wallace Lake). The Rocky River and other area streams are offering fairly low and clear conditions with a good number of steelhead available. There is weekend rain and snow in the forecast and wise anglers can monitor the flow gage data at the links below to help determine river conditions. When the waves are not too rough the steelhead and walleye night bite has been very good along the Cleveland lakefront. 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> <Rocky River NEORSD station with turbidity>
The Rocky River and other area streams are fairly low in flow and clear with steelhead available for anglers throughout the entire main branch of the Rocky River and Chagrin River up to North Chagrin Reservation. As is typical, the greatest concentration of fish, and therefore also anglers, is in the northernmost river stretches. As we recieve rain and snow into the weekend wise anglers will stay tuned to the flow and turbidity (water stain) data offered at the links above to determine the trend in river conditions. The big trout, averaging 5-7 lbs as of late, have been biting on brightly colored dime to nickel size spawn sacks when the water is stained and beads that mimic salmon eggs, small marabou jigs tipped with a few maggots or a waxworm drifted under a float, flies (egg patterns and baitfish streamers), and lures such as Little Cleo spoons and Vibrax spinners as the water clears further. The fall run is just gaining momentum with the increase in flows and more steelhead will continue to migrate up area streams into the fall season. A surprise this week has been a handfu of lake trout showing up in area streams. Check out a few photos below, as well as an explanation of where these otherwise locally rare fish are coming from.
The steelhead bite has remained very good along the Cleveland lakefront as lake wave conditions allow- especially at Edgewater Park and E55th east facing breakwall. Steelhead are also being hooked off the breakwall at E72nd, the pier at Wendy Park at the mouth of the Cuyahoga River, off the breakwall at Wildwood Park, and off the jetties at Huntington Beach. 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, as is suspending a small jig tipped with minnow or maggots under a bobber. Make sure to bring a long handed landing net when fishing the lakefront for steelhead!
In addition to steelhead, great catches of walleye have been found along nearshore Lake Erie. Shore based walleye anglers are doing best casting stickbaits (ie- Husky Jerks and Perfect 10s) and glow in the dark spoons at dusk and after dark. White bass and yellow perch fishing has been slow lately. 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 Ohio & Erie Canal fishing area off E49th Street (down the walking trail from Canalway Center) was stocked with 1,000 lbs of rainbow trout and 600 lbs of farm raised channel catfish on Friday Octover 13th. The daily limit here is 5 trout per angler. Trout bite well on PowerBait, small jigs tipped with maggots, and small spinners. Catfish bite great on chicken liver. Trout and catfish can both be targeted effectively fishing a half nightcrawler worm or chunk of cocktail shrimp right on the canal bottom.
Anglers at Metroparks inland lakes and ponds are catching catfish, largemouth bass, and panfish. Wallace Lake, Ledge Lake, Shadow Lake, and Beyer's Pond are a few spots worth poking around in fall. Oxbow Lagoon in Rocky River Reservation was stocked with 348 largemouth bass and bluegill, and Wallace Lake was stocked with the majority of 449 largemouth bass and bluegill over the past few weeks from a private golf course lake that is being drained, and additionally recieved 300 catchable size coho salmon and a few rainbow trout back in October.
Grafton Correctional Institution Collaboration Update.
We are looking for donations of aquarium gravel, aquarium decor, and larger capacity pumps and filters for the Grafton Correctional Institution inmate-run Aquatics Program. We are good on aquariums at this time. Please contact me to coordinate a donation.
Since spring 2016 the program has donated $3,616 in proceeds to the Cleveland Metroparks Fishing Fund. Currectly, they are growing out 156 juvenile largemouth bass to harvestable size to release in park waters- a program they intend to expand soon with larger outdoor pond. In addition to giving the inmates something prodective to be involved with n breeding valuable aquarium fish supplied to local retailers, the programs has therapeutic viewing tanks set up in leisure areas in every inmate building onsite, a program to allow U.S. military veterans to have a small aquarium in their cell, as well as aquariums at various institution office areas. We appreciate the work of the inmates involved as well as warden's assistant Adam Kastler in expanding this thriving collaboration!
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
Congratulation Zuleida! "My name is Zuleida Denman and I caught my first steelhead on November 8th in Rocky River at the Emerald Necklace boat launch. 21 inches and pretty heavy."
(photo courtesy of Zuleida Denman).
Congratulations Roman! "Today I caught my 1st Steelhead ever on the rocks of Edgewater Park using a KO Wobbler. What a beautiful fish to catch. Just wanted to share my happiness and picture."
(photo courtesy of Roman Kaleta).
Congratulations to Jessica, who caught her first two steelhead ever in the Rocky River this week (photos courtesy of Michael Domanich).
Congratulations Ricky! "Hi Mike, my name's Ricky. After the guys at work got me excited about steelhead fishing, I finally stopped down at the Rocky River Marina to give it a shot today after work. Here's a picture of my first ever steelhead, and I caught it on an all silver 1/4oz Little Cleo spoon. Thanks, and I really enjoy the weekly updates with the fishing reports!"
(photo courtesy of Ricky Colon).
Above are two (of four) lake trout I've seen photos of that were caught in area streams this week. Normally this would be extremely rare. But this is where these fish are likely coming from <Ohio stocks surplus Lake Trout in Lake Erie>
(photos courtesy of Michael Weilacher and Adam Priddy, respectively).
Brandon caught a coho salmon on Power Bait at Wallace Lake on Saturday (photo courtesy of Brandon Stewart).
Bob shares "Caught on a Rapala Husky Jerk around 10:30 am on November 11th by Morley ford. Video of my outing is on YouTube at https://youtu.be/6DIZRpJV9ec "
(photo courtesy of Bob Hack).
Greg shares "I caught my first steelhead of the year. On a Little Cleo spoon in the Rocky River on Sunday November 11, 2017. Under the Hilliard Road bridge."
(photo courtesy of Greg Palka).
Matt (bottom pic) and his uncle used 360 GT swimbaits to catch these walleye along the Lake Erie shoreline (photos courtesy of Matt Arroyo).
Tim caught a coho salmon by the Rocky River Nature Center last Thursday. He reports "Is this a coho salmon? Caught underneath the bridge by the Nature Center. Stopped by there at about 11:30 today and caught 6 fish on 8 casts on a spoon! Then no more bites so I went down near the confluence of the two river branches and got 2 on eggs. Turned out to be a great day."
Tim happens to do great work working at Ohio EPA (photos courtesy of Tim Fischer).
Jason reports "My catches from the Edgewater night bite on Thursday and Sunday. Caught them all with Husky Jerk and caught my 1st steelhead while walleye fishing too"
(photos courtesy of Jason Blackney).
Mike and friends have been catching lots of steelhead together at Edgewater Park. Mike likes a purple Little Cleo spoon. An angler caught a nice northern pike while steelhead fishing there this week (top photo), one of several nice pike caught along the Cleveland lakefront the past few weeks (photos courtesy of Mike Reed).
James reports "Got my first ever steelhead at Edgewater on a Rapala Shadow Rap (11/12). Got 3 walleye from Edgewater (11/12) , 7 walleye (11/8) with dad, and 3 more 24" on 11/14. All caught on blue/chrome/orange Husky Jerks."
(photos courtesy of James Czechanski).
John caught some nice Rocky River steelhead on Sunday and Monday (photos courtesy of John Lusnek).
On Monday we transferred 348 bluegill and largemouth bass from a private golf course pond being drained to Oxbow Lagoon in Rocky River Reservation.
On Tuesday we assisted Medina County Parks in conducting a fish population assessment at a newly acquired property that will be opened to fishing at a TBD date in the future.
Chuck shared "I was going through a box of old photos and came across a couple photos I took of Rockcliff Ford, fall 1979 , of people fishing for cohos. Thought I would share, see attached scans. The ford was in better shape then (and so was I)."
(photos courtesy of Chuck).
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 (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.