As we transition 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> <Rocky River NEORSD station with turbidity>
. Please note: the Fishing Blog is updated once a month in June, July, and August and back to weekly in September.
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 3-4" 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 lake-run fish available through at least early June. 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 smallmouth/largemouth bass may not be kept in Lake Erie or the Rocky River north of the Detroit Road bridge, Chagrin River north of the SR 283 bridge, or Cuyahoga River north of the Harvard Avenue bridge between May 1 and June 29. 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 late 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 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, white bass, northern pike, catfish, 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 in the nearshore waters of Cleveland, as well. The ODNR Division of Wildlife weekly Lake Erie fishing report can be viewed <here>.
Rocky River Clean-Up Saturday June 2. The annual Rocky River volunteer clean-up will be held Saturday June 2 from 9:00-noon, to be followed immediately by a cookout to thank our valued volunteers (thank you to local business Earnest Machine for sponsoring this year's cookout with a $500 donation). This is a collaborative effort between caring citizens, Rocky River Watershed Council, Cuyahoga Soil and Water Conservation District, Earnest Machine, 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 please come dressed to possibly get a bit wet and muddy.
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 .
Nadia had a great day on the Rocky River. Her big smallmouth bass and bonus rock bass came on a dark olive tube jig tipped with a leech (photos courtesy of Moe Slyman).
Steve Farley caught two quality northern pike at E55th Marina recently. The larger pike was released (photos courtesyof Andy Young).
This young man scored a largemouth bass at Wallace Lake photo courtesy of Dave Kasl).
A young lady caught her best catfish to date in the Cuyahoga River reports her proud boyfriend Jarred (photo courtesy of Jarred Bugg).
Keith and company float tube fished at Edgewater Marina and the multi-species diversity did not disappoint (photos courtesy of Keith Knerem).
Jeremiah also got in on the multi-species diversity at Edgewater Marina. You can even see Keith (from the last bunch of pics) in his float tube in one of the images! (photos courtesy of Jeremiah Shorlo).
Brad and friend caught some fine early summer walleye not far from the CLE shoreline at dusk (photos courtesy of Brad Gardner).
Greg and his dad Andy had a great day on the CLE waters of Lake Erie. Greg got a trophy 30", 10.7 lb walleye, smallmouth bass and steelhead among their catch, and they were treated to a heart shaped cloud formation illuminated by the sun (photos courtesy of Greg Young).
Vitor has been making some catches by the Rocky River boat ramps after dark, including several channel catfish, a longnose gar, and a softshell turtle (photos courtesy of Vitor).
Mike caught a pumkinseed sunfish, brown bullhead, and rock bass at E55th Marina (photos courtesy of Mike Brady).
Phi caught a golden rainbow trout at Wallace Lake (photos courtesy of Phi Nguyen).
Congratulations to Colin on catching his first flathead catfish ever in a Lake Erie tributary (photo courtesy of Tim Daley).
Jeff caught some nice rock bass and walleye with a CLE skyline backdrop (photos courtesy of Jeff Deluca).
Anglers at E55th Marina have been making good catches on both the marina and lake sides of the breakwall.
Allen shared this multi-angler walleye limit (photo courtesy of Allen Reinke).
Moe Slyman and I recently enjoyed a morning fishing the CLE shoreline from my boat. Our multi-species catch included largemouth bass, rock bass, and white bass and Moe got bit off by a northern pike. We caught fish on olive tube jigs, rattle cranks, minnow cranks, and spinnerbaits.
Carl shared this photo of a catch of yellow perch his father and him made at Edgewater Park breakwall in 1959 (photo courtesy of Carl Schweisthal).
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, firstname.lastname@example.org (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, email@example.com www.steelheadguide.com
- #19-005 Jeffery Liskay, Silver Fury Guide Service & Schools, firstname.lastname@example.org (440) 781-7536
- #19-006 Mario Chance, Chagrin River Outfitters, email@example.com (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.