Northern Ohio Fishing Report: It's a mixed bag

Walleye, Bass, Perch, Catfish all hitting

The Channel Catfish and Largemouth Bass action has picked up inland, while the Walleye bite remains consistent on Lake Erie.  Let's take a look at the fishing around the Buckeye State:

Lake Erie

In the Western Basin, there are good reports from the Port Clinton head boat fleet.  Chester at Shore-Nuf Charters says harnesses with a hammered gold finish have been producing plenty of Walleye.  The Drawbridge boats has been fishing the area between Green Island and Niagara Reef.  They also report excellent Yellow Perch catches.  Fisherman's Wharf tells us Walleye are being caught west of the Bass Islands.  Drifters and trollers are taking them on harnesses with gold blades, as well as spoons in the Jager Bomb and Purple Demon patterns.  Smallmouth Bass fishing has picked up.  Anglers throwing tube jigs near the islands are getting plenty of action.

Further east, Craig Lewis at Erie Outfitters says Walleye are hitting on both sides of the bar; in 40 feet of water inside, or 50 feet of water outside.  Walleye are being taken in good numbers from Lorain to Cleveland.  Harnesses and spoons are producing.  Best patterns are Wonder Bread and Jager Bomb.  Perch fishing is good from Lorain to Avon Lake.    

The folks at Shine's  in Cleveland report excellent catches of Yellow Perch off of Bratenahl in 41 feet of water.  Walleye continue to cooperate off of Cleveland in 61 to 62 feet of water.

Over at Wildwood Marina, the perch fishing has been great.  The Linda Mae, the head boat that runs out of Wildwood, has been bringing in excellent catches on most trips.  They're fishing the area just off of Euclid.  Emerald Shiners fished on Crappie rigs or spreaders in 33 feet of water will produce. 

Don at Harbor Bait in Fairport Harbor says perch fishing is strong in 42 to 43 feet of water off of Fairport.  Walleye are being caught in 63 feet of water.  Nightcrawler harnesses or spoons have been taking fish.  Jager Bomb, Sir Walleye, Firetiger, and Shrimp are the preferred patterns.  Don says faster trolling speeds are starting to produce more fish.  White Bass are also hitting well.  Smallmouth are being taken on tubes, crayfish, and crayfish imitations in rocky areas along the shoreline and in the Grand River.

Portage Lakes

Ron Slater at Portage Lakes Bait and Tackle says the Largemouth Bass have really turned on at this popular chain of lakes just south of Akron.  He says the early morning and dusk bites have been outstanding.  Topwater lures and soft plastics will take fish.  East Reservoir, Long Lake, and Turkeyfoot are your best bets. 

Jerry at Long Lake Bait and Tackle reports Bluegills, Redears, Yellow Perch, and Channel Catfish are all cooperating.  Jerry suggests Long Lake and North Reservoir for all of those species.  Wax worms, maggots, and red worms will take the Panfish.  Minnows fished deep will catch Yellow Perch.  Jerry says to try deeper areas of Turkeyfoot for Perch, too.  Channel catfish will hit on chicken livers, cut bait, dough baits, and nightcrawlers.  A seven pound Channel Catfish was taken trolling a Flicker Shad in Rex Lake earlier this week.

Nimisila Reservoir

Buckzeye11 is our man out a Nimisila.  Here's what he emailed me about Largemouth fishing in this reservoir in Green in southern Summit County:

"…the morning topwater bite has been decent in the pads, after it's over (8: 30 A.M.), Bass move to the outside edges of weedbeds... been catching them as deep as 12 feet of water."

Thanks for that information Buckzeye11.  If you have a fishing report you'd like to share, feel free to email me at , or you can find me on where my handle is TopCat.  Send me a personal message there.  You can also contact me on Twitter @gnoleff.

As for more on Nimisila, the Crappie bite is still surprisingly good.  Fish are being taken on jigs popped under bobbers near the weedy areas close to the dam.

West Branch

Mark at Mark's Bait and Tackle reports strong Walleye catches in the weeds in the no wake zone.  Jigs tipped with nightcrawlers will take fish.  Mark says the Walleye are feeding actively on small bluegill in the weed beds.  Muskies are also being caught by trollers dragging large diving crankbaits on the deep edges of the weed beds.  Bass are in their summer patterns.  They'll take soft plastics or spinner baits.  Morning and just before sundown are the best times.

Alvin over at Ron's West Branch Bait and Tackle says the Crappies are still hitting, but you'll have to work deeper structure to find the schools.  They tell us channel cats are hitting well on chicken livers, cutbait, and nightcrawlers.


Les's at Berlin tell us Walleye are being caught, but you have to work for them.  They're spread out from six to 25 feet of water.  Limits have been taken.  Techniques vary from jigging to trolling.  If you're going to pull a nightcrawler harness, Firetiger has been the preferred color.  Trollers are also catching Walleye on Flicker Shads in Firetiger, and

Reef Runners in Pink Lemonade and Tequila Sunrise patterns.  White Bass are turning up in good numbers on jigs, spinners, nightcrawlers, and minnows.  Some bass are being taken early in the day.  Crappies are deeper, but they are hitting minnows and jigs if you can find them.


Mark's Bait and Tackle has their finger on the pulse at Lake Milton, too.  They report plenty of Walleye are being taken by trollers working the river channel from the causeway to the I-76 bridge.  Diving cranks and nightcrawler harnesses will catch fish.  The Bass bite at Milton has moved into a summer pattern, with best fishing at sun up and sundown.  Largemouth will hit soft plastics fished near weeds and structure.  Smallmouth are in deeper rocky areas, and on the deeper sides of the mid-lake shallows.

Mosquito Creek

Kathy at Mosquito Lake Marina tells us outstanding Largemouth catches are being made in the weedy areas of coves and along submerged structure.  Soft plastics, spinner baits and buzz baits are catching fish.  Decent Walleye catches are being made fishing the outside edges of weed beds with jigs tipped with nightcrawlers. 

Up the lake at Causeway Sporting Goods, good catches of Crappie are being made by shore fisherman from the causeway.  Minnows are the preferred bait.  Walleye are taking trolled nightcrawler harnesses near the creek channel and just south of the causeway in eight to 12 feet of water.  Orange, silver, and white have been the top producing colors for the harnesses.  Channel Cats are hitting chicken livers and nightcrawlers everywhere in the lake.


Limit Walleye catches are being made early in the morning in the northside weed beds.  That's what the folks at Duck and Drake tell us.  Nightcrawler harnesses trolled or drifted should do the trick.  Good catches or Panfish and Bass are also being made.  They're being taken from water six to eight feet deep near structure.

  Charles Mill & Pleasant Hill

Dusty at Mifflin Lakes Trading Post reports some Saugeye are coming from above the dam at Charles Mill on nightcrawler harnesses trolled or drifted.  Minnows under a bobber will still take them near dusk below the dam.  Good catches of Channel Cats are being made above the dam on nightcrawlers, cut bait, and chicken livers.  Livers will also take Wipers.  The White Bass/Striped Bass hybrids will hit Rooster Tails and small cranks.

At Pleasant Hill, White Bass are being caught in good numbers.  Nightcrawlers and minnows will take them.  Some Saugeye are being caught trolling nightcrawler harnesses or Flicker Shads off the beach. 

Chippewa Lake

Panfish are being caught at this Medina County lake.  Bob Nemeth at Chippewa Lake Bait and Tackle says worms or waxworms under a bobber will take them.   Good catches of bass are being made.  Crankbaits and spinnerbaits have produced lately.  Catfish have been taking nightcrawlers and chicken livers.  One note:  This lake gets a lot of pleasure boating traffic, so your best bet is to fish it early.

Cleveland Metro Parks

The Rocky River is turning up good catches of Smallmouth Bass.  Jigs and small spinners are working, especially around submerged wood and rocks.  Most of the Metro Parks lakes are providing good Panfish catches.  Wallace Lake has been a consistent producer. 

Ohio River

Some big Channel Cats and Flathead Cats are being taken below the New Cumberland Dam in Columbiana County.  Cut herring, chicken livers, and garlic shrimp are producing fish.  Sauger are hitting Twister Tails, jigging spoons, and live bait fished near the bottom.    Some Bass are being reported on jigs below Pike Island.


This impoundment just south of Kent is one of the top Panfish producers in the state.  This summer is no exception.  Good catches of Redears and Bluegills are coming from deeper water in the seven to 10 foot range.  Maggots and wax worms will produce.  Good catches of Largemouth Bass are coming from the weed beds around the lake.  Soft plastics or spinner baits will take fish.


Fishing for Channel Catfish has been good, but it's been slow for almost everything else.  That's the report from Tappan Lake Marina.  The rain means the water is up and that's slowed down the Saugeye and Bass bites.  They should recover in the coming days.


Atwood Lake

There is a similar high water story at Atwood.  Atwood Lake Boats, Marina East tells us some Saugeye are being taken on nightcrawler harnesses, but high water levels is making fishing difficult.  It's also affecting bass. Channel Catfish are the bright spot.  They are taking chicken liver or cut bait all around the lake.

Piedmont Reservoir

The Piedmont Lake Marina  reports Musky fishing has been good near the dam.  Trolling large diving crankbaits has been producing.  Saugeye fishing has been fair.   Good catches of Largemouth Bass have been made along the deep edges of weeds.  Smallmouth Bass are taking jigs, crayfish, and crankbaits on rocky points.



Some Northern Pike and Smallmouth Bass are being caught from Canal Fulton to Dover.  Spoons, jigs, and crankbaits will catch fish.  The Lake Lucerne outflow just north of Canal Fulton has turned up some nice catches of Largemouth Bass.  The fish are readily taking minnows, as well as crankbaits and spinners.  Big Bluegills are being caught in that same area.  Good catches of Panfish and Yellow Perch are being made in the stretch of the Tuscarawas that runs through Firestone Metro Park in Akron. 

Sunny Lake

One of our readers, Patrick, has sent us this report on Sunny Lake in Aurora.  It sounds like it could be fun:

"…$10 non-resident charge and catch and release only. We spent about 1 1/2 hours casting spinners, rubber worms, top baits, etc. and got nothing. We decided to sit in the shade and do some bottom fishing using night crawlers. Within 5 minutes I pulled in a 4lb bass. In the next hour my wife and I landed 7 bass. Smallest about 2lbs. It was a good day. Lots of people but didn't see anyone else fishing…"

Thanks for that report, Patrick.

Cuyahoga River

Gone Fishing Bait and Tackle in Cuyahoga Falls tells us the stretch from Kent to Cuyahoga Falls is producing good catches of Smallmouth Bass and Northern Pike.  Spinnerbaits, spoons, and jigs have been effective.  Just a reminder that parts of the Cuyahoga through the Falls are off limits for a while due to dam demolition.

Sippo Lake

There are good catches for Panfish from this Stark County Lake.  If you are looking for a great place to introduce a child to the great sport of fishing, Sippo is a good location.  It offers a nice fishing pier, boat rentals, a bait shop, and a snack bar.  Bass, Catfish, Crappies, and White Perch can also be caught.

Wingfoot Lake

We're hearing Largemouth Bass and Sunfish are cooperating at this Portage County Lake.  Fish soft plastics near the weeds for the Largemouth.  Sunfish will take wax worms, maggots, and red worms, go slightly deeper for bigger fish.

Steelhead  Question

Barnard from Willoughby emailed a question to us.  He wanted to know if Steelhead could be caught on Lake Erie in the summer and if they could be specifically targeted. 

Good thing for Barnard we know one of the top Steelhead fishermen on Lake Erie.  We shot a call over to Craig Lewis at Erie Outfitters. 

Craig says "yes and yes" to both questions.  Yes, Steelhead can be caught on Lake Erie in the summer.  Walleye anglers pick them up from time to time.  And, yes they can be specifically targeted, but only after the thermocline develops.  That should happen in about another week.  Craig says Steelhead prefer cooler water, so they'll stay just below the thermocline.  Once you know where they are, you can target them.  Large silver spoons are the way to go for Steelhead.

Barnard, good luck and let us know how you do. 

If any of you have a question, send us and email, personal message, or tweet.  We'll do our best to get an answer for you.

Possible Record Largemouth

There is big news out of the Portage Lakes.  Ron Slater at Portage Lakes Bait and Tackle tells us there are reports of a nine pound three ounce Largemouth Bass being caught out of West Reservoir.  If so, that would eclipse the old Portage Lakes Largemouth record of eight pounds 10 ounces.  However, the fish was not weighed on an official scale and was returned to the water.  Ron's trying to get some pictures of the monster and will forward them to us.

Coming Soon

We will be taking a closer look at trolling for Walleye in a series of upcoming reports.  One of the top Walleye guides on Lake Erie, Captain Ryan Buddie will share some of his techniques.  They're proven on Lake Erie, but they translate to inland waters, too.  On a recent evening, I had the opportunity to fish with Ryan for about 90 minutes off of Lorain.  In that time, he put us on a number of Walleye, including a nine and a half pound brute.  Check out the picture of Ryan holding the fish in the photos section of this article.  Ryan also shares a lot of his fishing knowledge in his blog online at his website

We Want To Hear From You

And, we want to remind you that you can submit photos of your fish catches.  Go ahead, brag a little.  We might post the photos or broadcast them on Good Morning Cleveland.  Send those photos to .  We also welcome your fishing reports from you home waters, tips, suggestions, and even recipes that we can share.   If any of you want to let us know how things are where you're fishing, feel free to email me at .  You can also find me on  My handle there is TopCat, and you can send me a personal message.  You can also follow me on Twitter @gnoleff. If there's a body of water you fish, and we're not covering it, let us know and we'll keep you informed about the latest conditions there.  Plus, feel free to send us your fishing questions.  We'll try to get them answered.    

This report will be updated

through the week to reflect the most recent fishing conditions.

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