The Rocky River and other area streams are largely slush and ice filled and offer very limited fishing opportunities. When the rivers next thaw anglers can monitor the most recent river water level and temperature at the following links (Note: flow gage data can be erroneous during cold periods due to ice formation on the sensors) : <Rocky River flow gage data><Chagrin River flow gage data> <Rocky River NEORSD station with turbidity>
. On the other hand, anglers have successfully be ice fishing Metroparks lakes for rainbow trout, and are beginning to venture onto the frozen harbor areas along the Cleveland Lake Erie shoreline.
Area streams are largely filled with ice and slush and are offering very limited steelhead fishing opportunities. The Cuyahoga River is among the last streams to freeze, especially near the Rt 82 area dam in Brecksville. In a typical year steelhead numbers can be expected to peak into March-April, although a thaw prior to that can offer windows of good fishing in winter.
A highlight this week has been ice fishing for trout on various Metroparks lakes. Throughout the winter a total of 6,000 lbs of rainbow trout were stocked in Metroparks lakes, as follows: Wallace (2,800 lbs), Shadow (1,500 lbs), Ledge (1,200 lbs), Judge's (300 lbs) and Ranger (200 lbs) lakes. In addition to rainbow trout averaging between 1-2 lbs, quite a few bonus brown, brook trout, and golden rainbow trout were included (especially in Wallace Lake). Trout are also available at Ohio & Erie Canal fishing area down the hill from CanalWay Visitor Center off E49th Street. 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. Trout through the ice bite well on small to medium size (1/8-1/4 oz) jigging spoons with silver or gold colors, small marabou jijs tipped with grubs, PowerBait in bright colors, live minnows, and salmon eggs/small spawn sacks.
Anglers are just beginning to venture onto Cleveland area harbors of Lake Erie to seek steelhead, yellow perch, northern pike, and panfish. Fishing for these species was very good last year at spots like Edgewater and Gordon Park boat ramps, as well as Wildwood Marina. One big difference already apparent versus last year is that smaller gizzard shad are extremely abundant this year. This is great for the fish, but makes things tough for the angler to make his/her offering stand out. One friend out today with an underwater camera hasn't caught anything but has watched lots of shad with the occasional walleye and yellow perch swimming by.
Regarding ice fishing I offer the following safety advice, which is very important. Most state conservation agencies recommend at least 4" of solid ice before anglers should venture out to ice fish, and in Cleveland Metroparks it is the angler's responsibility to check that. One method is to use a spud bar near shore and check the ice thickness, and if it is >
4 inches then walk out a little further and check again. Ice is often thinnest right at the water's edge and around inlets and outlets of the waterbody. Other safety tips are to always carry a set of safety picks at the ready around your neck (see guys in the first two images below setting a great example), fish with a friend, let someone know where you'll be, and focus on areas near where other anglers are already fishing.
Jeff Liskay Fly Tying Offering.
Noted fly fisherman Jeff Liskay will be offering an upcoming fly tying class. On January February 27 from 6-9:00pm will be <Fly Tying 1: Introduction (Steelhead)>.
This popular classes will have capped attendance so register ASAP at the links to ensure your spots.
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
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.