The Rocky River and other area streams are currently muddy from recent rain, but are dropping and will have a good stain and flow for the weekend. Be aware that slush could pose some issues following heavier snowfall as well as in the mornings. Anglers can monitor the most recent river water level and temperature at the following link prior to making a trip: <Rocky River flow gage data><Chagrin River flow gage data> <Rocky River NEORSD station with turbidity>
. Lake Erie is rough and muddy today but when conditions have permitted nearshore anglers are targeting walleye, steelhead, and yellow perch. A total of 3,000 lbs of rainbow trout were stocked in Metroparks lakes recently with a duplicate stocking coming soon (details below).
The Rocky River and other area streams are currently muddy from recent rain, but will be in good shape just in time for the weekend. Be aware that slush could pose some issues following heavier snowfall as well as in the mornings. Steelhead are spread throughout the system at this time and will be biting marabou jigs under floats, brightly colored dime to nickel size spawn sacks, beads that mimic salmon eggs, flies (egg patterns and baitfish streamers), and lures such as Little Cleo spoons and wobbling crankbaits. Overall, the general consensus is that this steelhead season has been somewhat below average overall, although the past several weeks have offered some of the best fishing of the year so far. Steelhead numbers can be expected to peak into March-April.
Lake Erie is rough and muddy today. Prior to that, anglers fishing along the Cleveland lakefront were catching some jumbo yellow perch on the E55th north facing breakwall on live and salted emerald shiners on the lake bottom using crappie rigs. Perch success seems to vary quite a bit day by day. Anglers were reporting a few walleye from the E55th/E72nd areas, although that has slowed down quite a bit over the past two weeks. At the same locations some steelhead were being caught on nightcrawlers or small jigs tipped with minnow suspended between 4-6 feet under a bobber, as well as for anglers casting spoons.
In mid-December we stocked 3,000 lbs of rainbow trout, as follows: Wallace (1,400 lbs), Shadow (750 lbs), Ledge (600 lbs), Judge's (150 lbs) and Ranger (100 lbs) lakes. The size of the trout averaged about a pound and a half each and along with the predominantly standard rainbow trout are fair number of colorful golden rainbow trout (see photo of one below). Please note: the limits on these trout at 3/day at Wallace, Ledge, Judge's and Ranger lakes and 5/day at Shadow Lake and Ohio & Erie Canal fishing area (there is no size limit, unlike the river where trout ned to be minimum length of 12" and you can harvest 2/day). The second and final round of winter trout will go into the same lakes around mid January, possibly next week depending on weather, so stay tuned to the fishing report for updates. These trout bite well on jigging spoons, brightly colored PowerBait, and small jigs tipped with a few maggots or a waxworm. Our lakes should begin forming a thin crust of ice soon based on the current forecast.
Reporting Interesting Catches and the Benefit of Catch and Release.
As readers may see below, there were a number of interesting catches this week- including several brown trout, a coho salmon, and a Great Lakes strain muskie! I highly encourage folks to report catches like this- whether you catch them or if observed caught by others. A few good photos is always appreciated. Such reports of species that are in low abundance is important to fisheries managers, as other sampling techniques are typical not effective for species in low densities. Especially important are native species, with lake trout, muskie, and burbot coming to mind.
Additionally, a male brown trout was caught and released in the Rocky River twice (by two different anglers) between December 30 and January 5. See photos below. Although there is absolutely nothing wrong with keeping your catch within legal limits, this observation clearly illustrates that a unique catch can make multiple anglers happy if released. Just something to think about.
Fishing Guide Permit Renewals.
Please note that Fishing Guide Permits expired on December 31, 2018. Folks interested in renewing or beginning guiding on Cleveland Metroparks waters this year may find a link to the application materials following the photos at the end of this report. Thank you and may all your clients have fish filled trips in the New Year!
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
Eight year old Hunter, who is a serious angler (Dad's words), caught two jumbo perch at E55th before north winds blew them off the water at 9 AM. Dad reports these were Hunter's first yellow perch (photo courtesy of Paul Palagyi).
Proud father Jeff reports "On a very warm and sunny afternoon Paul caught his first fish of the new year. A very healthy 13" male rainbow of the dock at Ledge Lake using a jig and wax worms."
(photo courtesy of Jeff Zvara).
This fine walleye was caught from shore at E55th on Friday night (photo courtesy of Isaac Wiley).
Randy took his daughter steelhead fishing on the Rocky River on Sunday and they were successful (photos courtesy of Randy Zimmerman).
Adam caught some nice steelies, including a bruiser hen, fishing the Rocky with dad this week (photos courtesy of Adam Flachbart).
Diana landed 3 steelhead on the Rocky River on Monday (photos courtesy of Dale Edmonds).
Kyle caught and released a buck brown trout on the Rocky River on December 30, and Dave caught and released the same fish a week later on January 5th (photos courtesy of Kyle Stulock and Dave Lake).
Stephen also caught a brown trout in the Rocky River on Monday (photo courtesy of Stephen Daniluk).
Speaking of unique catches in our streams, Kelly caught a coho salmon in a small local creek on Sunday (photos courtesy of Kelly Woods).
And as yet another unique catch this week, Mike was trolling for walleye off E72nd on Saturday morning and caught a native Great Lakes strain musky (photo courtesy of Mike Miceli).
Max reports "Both the Rocky and Chagrin rivers fished well the past week. Caught a bunch lost a bunch and even pulled a bonus golden rainbow out of Shadow Lake. All fish on my hand tied jigs or eggs"
(photos courtesy of Max Madden).
Tony shared "I just wanted to send some pictures along for the fishing blog. You know I agree with you when you say that anglers are reporting that the fishing this year has been really slow because it has. I started fishing for steelhead in Mid-October and up until this past weekend I had only landed 4. Generally speaking for me personally, I notice the season picks up January-April so I'm hoping things start to heat up. I went 3 for 4 over the weekend so I'm happy! I've also been hitting the Cuyahoga quite frequently because it's been fishing really well.
" (photos courtesy of Tony Cilluffo).
Check out these gorgeous walleye caught off Cleveland on Sunday morning (photos courtesy of Michael Ruffo).
Liz landed a fresh steelhead on the lower Rocky River on Sunday afternoon.
These are the trophy walleye of the week on Dana and Mike's boat fishing off Cleveland (photo courtesy of Dana Daugherty-Klonowski).
The shore bite at E55th breakwall varies from day to day, but there has been some good fishing for quality perch this week. It seems the best days tend to have a light northerly wind with a light chop. Live or salted emerald shiner minnows fished on the bottom with a crappie rig and 1/2 oz sinker is all that is needed.
What does Santa do when Christmas is over? Well, this guy was spotted fishing for perch at Edgewater Park this week...
A few nice largemouth bass sampled (and released) during carp removal efforts this week.
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 (440) 247-7110
- #19-007 Justin Pribanic, Chagrin River Outfitters, firstname.lastname@example.org (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.