Fishing Report: Good weekend ahead

steelhead troutSteelhead trout fishing should warm up again, starting this weekend.

Warm winds chased away the early ice cover on local inland lakes, while rain muddied the steelhead trout streams of Northeast Ohio. Cleveland Metroparks kicked off its winter trout stockings at Wallace, Shadow, Ledge, Ranger and Judges lakes. Crappie and yellow perch are still biting on inland waters.

Lake Erie

Big winds Thursday made the near-shore boat fishing difficult on Lake Erie, but some fishermen are still catching walleye after dark while casting from shoreline piers and breakwalls. The best reported locations for night fishing are Cleveland Harbor and the Huron area. Casting from shore, No. 12 Husky Jerk lures in blue-chrome and clown colors have been good. Trolling fishermen are reporting success with F18 chartreuse, and silver colors have been popular.

The best night fishing has been from 5:30 to about 9 p.m.

Rivers and streams

Recent rains have kicked up water levels of local rivers and streams. Steelhead trout fishing should warm up again, starting this weekend. Good numbers of trout have been reported throughout the rivers, including fair numbers of trophy trout. Anglers will be dunking spawn bags and jig-maggot rigs this weekend, with the Rocky and Chagrin rivers expected to be the first waterways to give up trout.

Fly-fishing for steelhead trout should be good this weekend on egg patterns as well as sucker spawn, woolly-bugger flies and small nymphs.

Inland lakes

Wallace Lake in Berea was stocked Wednesday with 900 pounds of rainbow trout, a mix that includes a few trophy trout in the 4-pound category. Most of the trout were in the 15- to 18-inch range. Ranger Lake was also stocked Wednesday, and another 1,000 pounds of trout were released Thursday at Shadow, Ledge and Judges lakes.

Anglers will be tempting trout with PowerBait on hooks and small jigs, ice jigs tipped with salmon eggs, maggots or waxworms, or jigging spoons and jigging Rapalas.

Crappie and yellow perch fishing has been good in 8 to 12 feet of water at Wingfoot Lake on small Vib“E” lures and ice jigs tipped with maggots. Crappie and perch fishing should also be good at Mosquito and Pymatuning lakes.

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