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 low in level and clear today following a minor bump in flow from rain this week. The weekend forecast is looking to be wet so wise anglers will monitor the flow gage data at the links below following any rain- which will spur more fresh steelhead coming upstream. Anglers have been making decent catches of fresh steelhead in the northernmost miles of the Rocky River and other area streams. The steelhead bite has remained very good along the Cleveland lakefront, as has the night walleye bite. 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 running low and clear today following a minor bump in flow following the rain this week. The weekend forecast looks cool and wet, though, and can be expected to spur a run of fresh steelhead if the river flows increase. Decent catches of steelhead were reported in the northern reaches of the Rocky River (especially around the marina) and other area tributaries. The big trout, averaging 5-7 lbs as of late, are biting on brightly colored dime to nickel size spawn sacks, 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. This is just the beginning as more steelhead can be expected to migrate into our streams following every cool rain that bumps stream flow.
The steelhead bite has remained very good along the Cleveland lakefront- especially at Edgewater Park and E55th east facing breakwall. Steelhead are also showing up 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- largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, panfish (rock bass and sunfish), freshwater drum and northern pike can be found along the Cleveland shoreline in early fall and can be caught on offerings such as tube jigs, crankbaits, dropshot rigs and live bait. Nice catches of walleye (15-20 inches) have been found in water from only 16-24 feet deep by Cleveland area. Shore based walleye anglers are doing best 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. Wallace Lake was just stocked with the majority of 283 nice size largemouth bass and bluegill on Monday (from a private golf course lake being drained), and additionally recently recieved 300 catchable size coho salmon and a few rainbow trout.
Fishing The Rocky River Talk.
On Wednesday November 1st I'll be giving a public talk titled Fishing the Rocky River. This talk will cover all around fishing in the river and will be hosted at Tony K's at 841 West Bagley Road in Berea. Anyone is welcome. Complimentary appetizers start at 6:00pm (thanks to the Rocky River Watershed Council) and talk begins at 7:00pm. More info <here>.
Reports that the Coho Salmon Are Starting to Bite.
In early October we stocked 300 mostly coho salmon and a few rainbow trout in Wallace Lake. There is a clearly posted limit of one salmon/trout per angler daily at the lake. Overall the coho salmon had been fickle and tough to catch- until this week! Several anglers reported success in recent days. Just today angler Jim Wagner sent in "Sorry I didn’t get any pictures but caught 4 salmon, channel catfish, and a bluegill this morning at Wallace. All on red worms. Biggest was about 1.5 lbs. Thanks again."
Earlier this week Travis Sherman reported "I took it as a personal challenge to go and figure out how to catch one of the cohos. After 4 trips and watching hundreds of fish jumps I finally had my day (the fish were finally hungry). I went to Wallace on Monday 10-23 and found success. I landed 6 salmon and 2 trout. I caught all my fish on homemade jigs under a float. I kept one of the salmon and it was excellent. I can't wait to get back out there. The Coho are an excellent supplement for our fall fishery."
For yet another successful angler the salmon have been turning on right around 4:00pm.
Fall Dockage Specials at E55th Marina.
As an FYI to late season Lake Erie fishing boaters, we are offering some fall specials on dockage at E55th Marina. Dockage from November 1-30 is available for $150, or for $5/day (the latter of which includes remaining October dates). There will be electric, but no water, during this time. If interested call Lisa Buie at (216) 881-8141.
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
Keith shared "Attached is a photo of my son PJ and I with his first ever steelhead. He hooked two others but only landed the one. If you could post the pic on the fishing report it would make his day."
(photo courtesy of Keith Weitz).
Leroy "Red" Fenton caught his first steelhead ever at the tender age of 77 years old this week at Edgewater Park under the tutelage of his whippersnapper grandson Sean (photos courtesy of Sean Fenton).
Edward shares "My son Brandon landed his first steelhead ever Saturday at Euclid Creek at Wildwood Park. He ended up landing 2 on Saturday, then on Sunday I landed 2 and Brandon lost 3. It was a great weekend for shore fishing."
(photos courtesy of Ed Holderman).
Dave shares "My brother James and I caught our first steelhead Friday (team effort) at E55th off of a worm and bobber. I went back out Sunday morning and caught two more at E55th as well. It was a blast. We are hoping our cousin Richard will someday catch one as well!"
(photos courtesy of Dave Sadey).
Shannon caught four very nice steelhead from the rocks at Edgewater Park this week (photos courtesy of Marshall Withrow).
James caught his first steelhead ever casting an orange Rattle Trap at E72nd (photo courtesy of James Wagner).
Galen was targeting steelhead by the Edgewater Park public boat ramps and caught a surprise 32" northern pike instead, which he released (photos courtesy of Galen Bissell).
Matt says it was a great week of fishing- catching a steelhead at the dam on the Cuyahoga River at Brecksville Reservation, as well as some nice Lake Erie walleye and smallmouth bass with his buddy (photos courtesy of Matt Hendricks).
Tim shared "My wife Sabrina Got this along with many others off Edgewater Saturday. We fished 55 feet of water using Jet Divers and spoons. 8 in 2 hours once found them...18-23 good eaters. A beautiful day on the water!"
(photo courtesy of Tim).
On Wednesday morning Dean was targeting coho salmon at Wallace Lake, but found a good bite for largemouth bass and panfish instead (photos courtesy of Dean Sauer).
Brian, aka "Papa Shongo", caught a bruiser steelhead on a purple Little Cleo spoon at Edgewater Park (photo courtesy of Mike Reed).
Mike and a buddy caught some fine steelhead at "The Hook" (J-shaped rock breakwall) by E72nd Street this week (photos courtesy of Mike Petruska).
Buddies Jarred, Adam, and Brian caught some nice steelhead and bonus white bass at Edgewater Park this week (photos courtesy of Jarred Bugg).
Recently stocked farm raised channel catfish are biting at Ohio & Erie Canal fishing area, as are rainbow trout.
Joe shares "Another outing, another fish for the blog. I went fishing in the Chagrin River yesterday, had to climb down the side of a 6 foot cliff to get to the spot, very small hike but found a hole of about 10-15 early runners up the river. Caught mine off a Rattlin’ Rapala. Feisty jumper but very exciting. Thank you!"
(photo courtesy of Joe Greve).
Congratulation to Jason (top image) on catching his first steelhead ever at E72nd on Saturday. His unofficial guide Owen, who works for me, landed a "steelhead lite" (sheepshead). The guys were using spoons. In the bottom image is Nathan from Akron leaving with his steelhead limit of two fish (photos courtesy of Owen Lockhart).
Anthony had a really cool experience on the river yesterday. In his words "Caught this 29" 8.97 pound steelhead on a Whopper Plopper in the Rocky River on 10-25-17. I was bass fishing under I-480 when this steelhead came up and annihilated my top water lure."
(photo courtesy of Anthony Perkins).
The yellow perch fishing out of Euclid has been picking up this week with the Wildwood Marina party boat making a better catch of yellow perch along with some incidental white bass, walleye, and steelhead (photos courtesy of Wildwood Marina).
Matt caught had success along the lakefront on Monday morning casting a white Storm 360GT lure (photo courtesy of Matt Arroyo).
Can you spot the steelhead in this image? The photo was taken by the Rocky River Nature Center on Friday so at least a few fish moved quite a distance upstream despite overall low water lately (photo courtesy of Jason Atkinson).
Steve shared "My dad and I just returned from a weekend fishing with friends in New York in the 18 Mile River at Burt Dam. We have been going for years and this was the best year yet. Fishing was on fire! I landed 8 and hooked up a bunch."
(photos courtesy of steve Kerr).
This mustachioed gentleman and catfish are dopplegangers for each other!
On Monday we collected and tranferred 283 fish from a private golf course lake being drained to Wallace Lake. The catch was primarily largenmouth bass and bluegill. We will likely be making another trip or two back there as they continue to drain the lake into fall.
Graham is one of my valued volunteers. We both share a bond as former Baldwin Wallace University wrestlers (he graduated last year and I graduated in '93). I was recently very pleased that he scored a great seasonal gig working with coho salmon at a Native American reservation in Oregon. He sent me this update and photos yesterday (photos courtesy of Graham Montague).
A glorious Edgewater Park sunset (photo courtesy of Jarred Bugg).
We collected some big goldfish during a collaborative lake draining project with the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District back in June. It was pretty routine and all but forgotten- until the Sewer District did a late <blog post>
this week that was picked up locally then nationally by the media. Here are a few of the several sensationalized versions of the story <NBC New York story>
and <Snapchat News>
The great thing is that our conservation message urging folks not to release their pets in the wild carried through all the stories.
On the evening of Wednesday November 1st I'll be giving a public talk about fishing in the Rocky River. More info <here>.
Anyone is welcome.
Note: The fishing report is updated monthly in June, July, and August and weekly every other month
2018 Cleveland Metroparks Registered Fishing Guides (name, company, contact)
#18-001 Monte Casey, The Steelhead Guide, firstname.lastname@example.org www.steelheadguide.com
#18-002 Jeffery Liskay, Silver Fury Guide Service & Schools, email@example.com (440) 781-7536
#18-003 Josh Trammell, Steelhead Alley Outfitters, www.steelheadalleyoutfitters.com (888) 453-5899
#18-004 Joseph Beno, On The Swing, Joseph93935@hotmail.com (440) 667-2278
#18-005 Daniel Bennett, Steelhead Alley Outfitters, www.steelheadalleyoutfitters.com (888) 453-5899
#18-006 Brad Dunkle, Wildwood Anglers LLC, firstname.lastname@example.org (419) 540-8585
#18-007 Nathan Miller, Steelhead Alley Outfitters, www.steelheadalleyoutfitters.com (888) 453-5899
#18-008 Justin Pribanic, Chagrin River Outfitters, email@example.com (724) 799-5011
#18-009 Patrick Robinson, Steelhead Alley Outfitters, www.steelheadalleyoutfitters.com (888) 453-5899
#18-010 Travis Larson, Hatch Run Fly Fishing, firstname.lastname@example.org (814) 706-1958
#18-011 Mario Chance, Chagrin River Outfitters, email@example.com (330) 984-3086
#18-012 Don Mathews, Steelhead School, www.steelheadschool.com (330) 565-5457
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>