Larry's Fishing Hole Fishing Reports

- We Wish You All SAFE & GOOD FISHING..!
We appreciate all who visit and read these reports.
Your support makes all the work worthwhile.
Thanks to all who help supply reports for us to share with fellow anglers.

We strive each week to compile the best reports possible.
However, we cannot assure total accuracy of info supplied along with any human errors that may occur.

- We welcome any fishing reports or photos you wish to send us for sharing with other anglers -
God willing we will try to keep these reports going to share with you again this year..!

UPDATED July 1, 2015

Enjoy your time Outdoors.!


Fishing success depends on many factors such as an anglers experience, the baits/lures used, the presentations/techniques, weather and other variables. Our goal is to share information to help anglers improve their fishing success by making good decisions.
We continue to seek out and secure weekly reports on fishing conditions for most lakes and rivers in Central IL.
If a lake is not mentioned, it is due to a lack of current and/or useful information.
Many of our reports are from supportive anglers willing to share info to assist other anglers.
  Ultimately the real test of any lake or stream is to fish it.   GOOD FISHING.!

-- With many lakes and ponds water levels above normal and stained from run-off, anglers finding fish near shorelines and Catfishing is Fairly Good..
- Most all Rivers are real high and somewhat unsafe and some unfishable, but many are starting to drop but could take some time...
- The weather conditions this past week with varying temps, rain and cold fronts have fish moving in and out of summer patterns with some along shore in evenings..
And again, many finding Catfish to be very active.
- With the flooding conditions, Check this page for Daily River & Reservoir level reports:
- Hope You All can Get out and ENJOY the Outdoors along some GOOD FISHING..!

If you find those pesky Gnats are out = do as we do and not leave home or go out without a bottle or two of The Original Vanilla Bug Spray to repel those biting gnats, flies and mosquitoes..
To get your bottle, visit for locations or to order..

  - - Notes Of Interest : -

* Due to extreme rain events recently, there is flooding conditions on rivers and more causing closures within Illinois State Parks trails, campgrounds and river access areas yet this week. Also - The U.S. Coast Guard has Closed the Illinois River to recreational boating from mile marker 0 to 187 (near Lacon) until further notice. - Please check this Updated List for state site closures in your area.
- The IDNR Division of Fisheries has NEW regulations Now in effect for 2015 on the harvest of Flathead Catfish due to concerns about the overharvest of this large fish species.
Read the Press Release and Full Details HERE

- The U.S. Coast Guard has released a Free boating safety app designed to provide additional resources for mobile users. Watch USCG app features video with download info & more

* The New 2015-2016 Illinois Fishing Information guide is available in PDF format
on the IDNR website where you can read or print you a copy.


  - Check our sponsors on the right for your baits, tackle, guide options and more.
Visit   their  website   links   on the right..   ----------------------------------------------> >


- - Near STARVED ROCK and South downstream: to about HENNEPIN :
-- The River is starting a slow drop and was about 8 feet over flood stage today near LaSalle/Peru..
- and at Peoria crest was Tuesday about 9 feet above flood stage and will slowly start dropping soon..
* Due to flooding conditions on river - The U.S. Coast Guard has Closed the Illinois River to recreational boating until further notice.

  - Tim sent this photo of Kasie
  with her 1st Hybrid Striper caught
  & landed while fishing for Flatheads.

- Bass were FAIR-GOOD at local ponds or strip mine lakes on plastics, swimbaits along weed edges and topwater baits in evenings.
- Bluegills were FAIR-GOOD around weed edges and weed pockets.
- Catfish are FAIRLY GOOD on Hoss´s Hawg Bait dip baits and most other baits

 - Dennis caught this beauty on 3 inch pumpkin seed tube jig
  in a local private pond in Peoria County Sunday the 28th.
  Kayaks are a great way to get around
  smaller ponds with no boat ramp.
  Black 7 inch rubber worms were working well also.

  - Jacob says Bass were Fairly Good
  on Lake Warren,
  a private lake north of Monmouth.

  -   NORFORK LAKE in Arkansas
For current reports or to set up an Awesome fishing trip (we highly recommend), check Tom Reynolds of STR Outfitters at
- Here is latest Report from Tom : We had a great week of stable weather; the lake rose another 6 inches but the stripers continue to bite. Stripers are biting from the 62 bridge to the dam and up towards Big Creek. You can find stripers at all depths, I caught fish in 40 foot all the way out to 140 foot, stripers are schooling and feeding on shad and crawdads.
If the stripers are shallow, 40 foot they will be feeding on crawdads, in the deeper water they are feeding on threadfin and gizzard shad. I cleaned stripers with 7 - 8 inch gizzard shad in their stomach, sometimes they had 2 and 3 of them; they are on a good feed right now.
The water is high but the marinas, beaches, boat ramps, and resorts are open and awaiting your arrival. The lake is warm, clear, and clean so do not hesitate about coming to the Norfork Lake this summer.
I fished all week, two days I pre-fished looking for new places that the stripers are feeding at. I found stripers in the Robinson Point area all the way to the Hand Cove and up Big Creek. I took Steve out with his friend Gary for two striper trips; they had both fished Norfork a couple of times for stripers with no luck. The first day we caught one limit but missed many fish. Each time a client comes for the first time it can be difficult learning how to set the hook when your downline, (2 oz sinker with bait straight down counted to a specific depth), fishing. The next trip we again missed many stripers and only caught one limit but Steve did catch a big 25 lb striper that he is getting mounted. We had a lot of fun and they are already planning their next striper adventure.
For you out of area folks, you might want to get your calendars out and start making plans now. June has been a very good fishing month and I expect July to be just as strong.
You crappie folks should keep a close eye on current Norfork Lake conditions also as crappie time has begun and there is a good bass bite going on along most shorelines too.
A good tool to use to make your plans with is on the web at for everything Norfork Lake!
- Tom Reynolds has fished Lake Norfork for over 35 years and guides out of Tracy Ferry Marina; you can reach him at   or 870-421-1541 or on Facebook.
** Reading these Norfork reports it is hard to know the time and work involved to get & keep bait to be able to catch these awesome fish, but We can verify the time and how much work it is for a live bait fishing guide as we spent 2 days with Tom from start to finish of day to understand "A day as a Guide" and all the time and work involved.   Read our full STORY HERE

- Guide Paul Center spent 3 weeks guiding anglers in Ely, MN catching many Smallmouth, Pike, Walleye & Lake Trout.
He sent many Awesome fish photos but these two I like because he says "On my day off from guiding in Ely
I took wife Kathleen and Lily to Basswood lake, this is a permit lake in the BWCA. We were fishing UL rods
& 4 lb test for Bluegills when I caught this 36 inch Pike along with a 20 inch Largemouth and 18 inch Smallmouth.
Kathleen managed several 10 inch Bluegill and this 18 inch Smallmouth on her UL rod."

ANDERSON LAKE - Site Office 309-759-4484
* This area is Closed due to flooding of the Illinois River - Please check this Updated List for this and other state site closures in your area.

BANNER MARSH - 3 access points on Routes 24/9 3 mi. NE of Banner, with a 25HP limit. (309-647-9184) * Heavy rains have caused flooding conditions East point entrance is CLOSED; all interior roads to the shelter house, boat launch and children´s pond are under water. - Please check this Updated List for this and other state site closures in your area.

DAWSON LAKE - East of Bloomington Exit #149 on I-74, North through LeRoy 4-miles on CH21 then East at Moraine View State Park sign.
* NEW limit Reg for Large or Smallmouth Bass . . 3 Fish Daily Creel Limit . . Protected Length Limit; 2 Fish less than 15 inch and 1 Fish 15 inch or larger. Also Bluegill or Redear Sunfish . . Protected Length Limit; 20 Fish (either singly or in aggregate)   Daily Creel Limit, of which only 5 fish can be 8 inch or larger
- Bass were FAIR-GOOD on plastics, crankbaits along weed edge or around timber and few on topwater baits in evening
- Bluegills were FAIR but small on waxies, crickets and part crawler along weeds.
- Catfish are FAIRLY GOOD on dip baits, crawlers and few on cut bait
- Crappie were FAIR-SLOW on jigs and/or minnows around brush.
- Walleye were FAIR on drifting jigs with minnows & some crawlers along deeper breaks

DOUBLE T STATE FISH and WILDLIFE AREA (3 miles northwest of Canton) - From State Route 78 in Canton, turn West on Vine Street (County Hwy. 21) go 3 miles turn right following County Hwy. 21 for 1-mile to cross-road (Cypress Rd.) and turn left (west), Lake is approx. 3/4 mile on right.
- Jack says on July 1st the lake was mud colored on the south side with a little clearer water on the north side maybe from the NE winds.
Bass were little SLOW and tight to shore weeds or timber on plastic worm or fluke

EMIQUON PRESERVE - Between Havana and Dickson Mounds Museum on IL Route 78
For more info and details on Emiquon, go to
* New permits are required for boating and fishing each year - are free and available at Dickson Mounds Museum, 10956 N Dickson Mounds Rd, Lewistown, IL from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Call The Nature Conservancy at (309) 547-2730.
- No New Reports this week.. Weather & Wind kept made it tough..
- -Some of the site rules are: - No live bait except worms; - No bank fishing is allowed;
- No gas motors (not even on the boat) including ice augers.
- Minors must be accompanied by an adult 18 years of age or older and authorized by the minor´s parent or legal guardian.
- Boating and fishing are permitted between sunrise and sunset with additional restrictions applying:
No boating, fishing or ice skating access before 12:00 pm during waterfowl hunting season. Lake users should be aware that hunting might occur on the Preserve other times as well.
- - Check their site for updated rules or go to Official Site RULES file.

EVERGREEN LAKE - North of Bloomington to Exit #8 on I-39, and West just over 1-mile and turn left (south) at sign.
* This Lake has BOATING FEES and Evergreen Lake remains a 10 hp (or less) lake.
* * The NEW limit Reg for Saugeye is 18 inch Minimum Length Limit and 3 Fish Daily Creel Limit
Bait Shop & Boat Rental hours: 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. seven days/week
- Bass were FAIR on plastics, crankbaits and swimbaits along outer weed edge or around ends of timber with some on topwater baits in evenings.
- Bluegills were FAIR with several small fish along weed edges and pockets
- Catfish are FAIR near or in coves and around shore area of swim beach on cut baits, dip baits and crawlers
- Crappie were FAIR and mostly small fish on jigs and/or minnows around deeper brush.
- Saugeye were FAIR with many small fish on jig/crawler and live bait rigs along breaks and points with a couple on crankbaits too
  - Stefan sent this photo from weekend with
  the 3 kids out on the boat and weather was wonderful.
  He says "Fishing was a little slow,
  but 4 year old daughter Anya caught this 15 inch Bass.
  The most excitement was a 16 inch soft shell turtle my oldest caught.
  The mystery of not knowing what´s on the other end of the line
  till you see it, keeps them intrigued. Good times."

- - Lake Open daily until sunset; launch opens at 6am, shore-fishing at 6:30am.
-- The lake level is up and stained with water temps in 70s on south side as many cannot get under the bridge.
- Bass were FAIR-SLOW on plastics and crankbaits
- Catfish were FAIR on most baits
- Crappie were little SLOW .
- Hybrids were SLOW-FAIR and mostly smaller on jig/twister and trolled crankbaits.
- Walleye were FAIR-SLOW on baits rigs and trolled crankbaits.
- Lots of Yellow Bass reported recently..

HENNEPIN-HOPPER LAKES - 2 miles South of Hennepin off IL Route 26, turn West on Road 810N and then next right.)
* Hennepin & Hopper Lakes continue to be Closed to all public sport fishing, while the Wetlands Initiative and the (IDNR) monitor efforts to remove invasive common carp from the lakes. --
* NEWS Still says * Fishing could return to Hennepin & Hopper Lakes sometime this season. READ STORY

LAKE BLOOMINGTON - North of Bloomington to Exit #8 on I-39, and East for 3 1/2-miles.
---This Lake does have a BOATING FEE and a 40hp limit and permit required.
* NEW limit Reg for 2015 is White, Black or Hybrid Crappie . . 15 Fish Daily Creel Limit
-- Guide Paul Center tells us on Sunday evening the water was very dark but the crappies were active near the top over 12-15 foot of water.
- Bass were FAIR on plastics, small spinnerbaits and some on small crankbaits along weed edges and near timber laydowns
- Bluegills are FAIR but small around weed edges, sea walls and in coves
- Catfish are FAIR at breaks going into coves on most baits.
- Crappie were FAIR on jigs and power baits or minnows suspended over deeper cover.
* For bait check out Mike´s Minnow Bucket Bait Shop ..!   2.7 miles west of I-39 in El Paso on US 24

LAKE EUREKA - This Lake is only 30 acres, and is a good place for the family and kids, a lake where the whole shore line can be fished, there is a boat ramp and ONLY trolling motor use is allowed and if boat has a Motor on it, you must have a City Motor Permit but still May Not start it for any reason.! (Remember - No Minnows fishing Allowed)
- Bluegills are FAIR-GOOD but small
- Catfish are FAIR-GOOD on crawlers and dip baits
* For bait check out Mike´s Minnow Bucket Bait Shop ..!   2.7 miles west of I-39 in El Paso on US 24

LAKE SHELBYVILLE - Between Shelbyville and Sullivan - LAKE INFO LINE (217) 774-2020 and LAKE PROJECT OFFICE (217) 774-3951.
- Here is report from Guide Steve Welch on June 29th : " The lake is now at 609.3 or nine feet over summer pool and the water temps are running 77. The south end is very clear and the north end has quite a bit of stain but very fishable. Once the thermocline starts to form on the north end the crappie fishing will get better so for now I am fishing further south in the clear water.
We are crappie fishing over deep brush mid lake to south end. We are using a slip bobber and minnow set at 16-17ft. and fishing the tops of deep brush that is in 20-25 feet.
We are also going up some of the creeks and fishing brush and willows in 6-10 feet with the same slip bobber and minnows set up. Main lake willows are also working on south end. We are also using jigs and tight lining in both willows and over brush with very good success.
The white bass are being caught on ledges that have wind blowing into them but they move around all the time so keeping track of them is hard. I am concentrating on the crappie. "
  - Jim Craig, his father & his son-in-law
  with their mess of 60 crappie caught along
  with guide, Steve Welch, on Saturday June 27th

- Timothy has this to share for the Upper Rivers of Shelbyville - The upper Kaskaskia is flooded. The Okaw however is fishable and the fish are biting. Seeing some very nice catfish being caught on a variety of bait right now along with a mixed bag of other fish that are active in these swift waters.

McMASTER LAKE at - SNAKEDEN HOLLOW - - NW of Peoria, just 1 1/2 miles East of Victoria South off IL Route 167, there is a 10HP limit. 309-879-2607
- Bass were FAIR and at times FAIR-GOOD for couple anglers mostly on plastics late last week into Sat morning.
-- Not heard Any reports from here this week.?

- Lake level is up but has come down slightly.
- Catfish remain GOOD even with high water on or near flats with most on dip baits are working such as Hoss´s Hawg Bait.
- Crappie were little SLOW but improving around 9 - 15 foot brush
- Check with Todd Gessner Outdoors Guide Service on Rend Lake at 618-513-0520 for future fishing trips
and make sure to look into a stay at the new Gun Creek Fin, Fur & Feathers Sportsmens Club
- - Read this week's Fishing Report from US Army Corps who says
"Please fish safely! Always buckle up your life jacket on the water! "
And Please recycle your monofilament fishing line at collection stations provided at various locations around Lake.
For more info feel free to contact the Rend Lake Project Office at
  11981 Rend City Road, Benton, IL 62812   or by phone at 618-724-2493.

- - This Lake has a 10-horsepower limit.
- - - Park hours April thru October 6:00 AM – 10:00 PM
- Bass were FAIR on plastic (wacky worms), flukes and topwater baits
- Bluegills were FAIR-GOOD near shore weeds.
- Catfish are GOOD (and some say are in spawn ?) on chicken liver, dip baits and crawlers with some nice fish caught recently
- Crappie were FAIR-SLOW around deep cribs with varying sizes.
- Muskie were FAIR at times with couple nice fish caught recently.
- Walleye were FAIR-GOOD over weekend with some nice size fish on live bait rigs, trolling crankbaits and some on jigs but Slowed some on Tuesday..

SPRING LAKE (South & North) - Just south of Pekin off Manito Blacktop, 5 miles northwest of Manito, and there is a 25HP limit. (309-968-7135)
- No New Reports from here this week.?

  Call (309) 676-0998 for details, including rules and regulations.
- RULES and/or REGS For Fishing: (While park is Open for season)
-- Anglers will enter and exit the park like all other visitors. A general admission fee is charged at the main gate
or yearly membership privileges are applicable.
-- Fishing in all these lakes will be from shore, belly boats, or portable boats.
No boat ramps or road access will be available for trailer launching. ONLY electric motors are allowed.
-- Statewide sport fishing regulations will be in effect and enforced.
Valid Illinois fishing license is required for those age 16 years and older.
  *Fishing Hours*
East Side at Park:
Daily 9:00 AM - 3:30 PM
- Lakes open to the public are Deep Lake, Caboose Lake, Beaver Lake, and Horseshoe Lake.
West Side lake:
Daily Sunrise - Sunset
- Lake open to the public is Taylor Lake, located on the west side of WPSP property
- - No New Reports from here.?


CLINTON LAKE - Three miles east of Clinton off Route 10 or 54 Ph 217/935-8722.
--A NO-WAKE speed limit is in effect from a half-hour after sunset to a half-hour before sunrise at Clinton Lake. Signs should be posted at the lake for reminders and a Violation will lead to a $75 ticket.
-- No bowfishing allowed in spillway which is considered a developed recreational area.
  - Terry caught his 1st Flathead at 65+ pounds - scale topped out,
  on cut bait Shad Head. (Photo is with Sean his Fishing Buddy)
  He says "After Photo, said our Goodbyes and released it for the
  next lucky Son of a Gun to catch and have as much fun as I did.!"

- Bass were FAIR-SLOW this week along flooded weeds
- Bluegills are FAIR on wax worms and redworms along shore cover and in coves.
- Catfish are GOOD on shad, night crawlers, minnows and dip baits.
- Crappie are little SLOW and scattered over/around deeper cover
- Walleye were FAIR on bait rigs or jig and minnows around gravel pit breaks and along grassy flats
- Not much on other fish this week
- Beginning Monday, July 6th through Friday, July 31st, 2015, Bridge Construction near the Clinton Lake State Recreation Area main park entrance will create a detour of South bound traffic on County Hwy 14 (in DeWitt, IL). Detour signs will direct all park users to access the park from State Route 10 .
- - Ol´ Joe´s Bait and Tackle is open at 5am with all your favorite baits and jigs, as well as a full license service and carries full lineup of BrushPile Jigs.. Check them out and get the latest fishing reports.
- And Ol´ Joe says the Bait Shop is FOR SALE..!

LAKE SPRINGFIELD - At Springfield off I-55 Exit 94 and go the east.
- Bass were FAIR on plastics, swimjigs and crankbaits along breaks during day with a few on topwater in evenings
- Catfish remain FAIR-GOOD on most baits
- Crappie were little SLOW and scattered
-- Check with Trevor at Big Reds Bait and Tackle for your bait and current reports at 2193 Stevenson Drive in Springfield 62703 just a mile west from the lake dam. You can call them at (217) 679-1800

Lake is reported to be open with Daily Hours of 6 a.m. - sunset 7-days a week.
** All fishermen must be off the lake by closing time each day. Hours may be adjusted due to staffing issues, so visitors should call ahead to (815) 795-2448 to confirm operating hours.
* Visitors are also reminded that LaSalle Lake is a perched lake and can become turbulent during windy or inclement weather. When the light of the wind warning system is flashing, no boats are to be launched and boats on the lake should seek shelter.
- Wear your Life Jackets at all times on the water -
* Reminder of the new wind velocity rule of 12 mph will cause the ramps to be CLOSED.
With the windy days we have - it would be a good idea to
Call ahead at (815) 357-1608 to enquire on openings.

NEWTON LAKE - 16-17 miles southeast of Effingham off Route 33.
-- No Reports shared from here again this week..

POWERTON LAKE - One mile south of Pekin off Route 29 along Manito Blacktop.
---- site Office 309-968-7135
- - SUMMER HOURS (Through Sept. 30th): 6am-8pm
  - Ron from Riverside Baitshop
  weighed this 37 pound Blue Cat
  on Sunday June 28 caught by Blake McBeath of Pekin.
  Blake said it took about 20 minutes to land this fish
  and was caught on cut Bluegill.

SANGCHRIS LAKE - South of Springfield off I-55 Exit 82 - go east on Route 104 about 10 miles.
-- Lake has a 25HP limit, Lake site office # 217/498-9208 from 8 a.m.- 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.
- Bass were FAIR on plastics, flukes and small spinnerbaits around deep ends of timber and outer weed edges and a few on topwater
- Bluegill were FAIR in coves and along shore weeds and pockets
- Catfish were FAIR near coves and around are of dam on cut baits, dip baits and crawlers
- Crappie were SLOW and scattered.
-- Check with Trevor at Big Red´s Bait and Tackle for current reports at 2193 Stevenson Drive in Springfield on your way to lake..

- LINKS or Other Lake Reports outside Central Illinois. -

- For Chicago area and southern Wisconsin Fishing Reports check out the
Chicago Sun-Times Outdoors section by  Dale Bowman

- MARK TWAIN LAKE in Missouri
---Check Out The Fishing Reports from the Good people at South Fork Resort

- NORFORK LAKE in Arkansas
For current reports or to set up a fishing trip (we would recommend), check STR Outfitters at
--- View STR Outfitters Facebook page click here for real time up to date each day or read Tom´s fishing blog here at

If you are thinking of Fishing or Hunting this year
Check the Reports & specials from Tom Reynolds of STR Outfitters

- Read about our Outdoor Writers/Broadcasters Visit at Kentucky Lake fall 2013..

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