Lake Erie Fishing Report: May 1, 2002|
Western Basin: Lake Erie water temperature is 49* F off Toledo and
Cleveland. Wind and rain events have hampered fishing activity on Lake Erie
the past week. Prior to the high winds and muddied waters, fishing was good
to excellent for walleyes, yellow perch, and smallmouth bass. Anglers are
catching walleyes in the 16- to 18-inch range and larger. Some anglers are
vertical jigging using leadhead jigs tipped with minnows and blade baits
while others are using trolling methods. Trollers are taking the largest
fish. Recent good spots include the Reef Complex, off Davis Besse and north
of Kelleys Island to Middle Island. The legal bag limit for walleyes for
Lake Erie and its tributaries is six fish from May through February.
Perch fishing remains excellent with hot spots reported as off the
Marblehead Lighthouse and the north side of Kelleys. Perch anglers are
catching many limits of nice-sized perch in the 9- to 13-inch range using
perch spreaders or crappie rigs tipped with minnows. The yellow perch bag
limit is 30 perch per angler per day.
Smallmouth bass fishing is good around the islands, particularly around
North Bass. May is prime smallmouth season on Lake Erie. Bass anglers
should also expect excellent fishing in the western basin reef complex,
Sandusky Bay, Ruggles Reef, artificial reefs in the Lorain/Cleveland area
and harbor breakwalls from Cleveland to Conneaut. Most catches will measure
14 to 18 inches. The legal limit for smallmouth bass is five fish per
angler with a minimum length requirement of 14 inches.
Central Basin Streams: Streams are coming down from recent higher flows and
are generally moderate and stained. Streams like Mill, Arcola, and Paine
creeks are relatively clear, but rain may muddy conditions locally. Peak
runs are winding down, but some big fish continue to be caught. Fish can be
found throughout the main rivers and tributaries, but will be concentrated
in the lower portions of the creeks as they get ready to migrate back out to
the lake. Stream steelhead anglers use spawn bags, jigs & maggots, minnows,
or flies such as woolly buggers, weighted nymphs, egg patterns and streamers
that imitate shiners. There are many public access areas on Ohio streams.
If you are on private property, you must have landowner permission.