Larry's Fishing Hole Fishing Reports

- We Wish You All SAFE & GOOD FISHING..!
We appreciate all who visit and read these reports.
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 accure.

- We welcome any fishing reports you wish to send us for sharing with other anglers -

UPDATED July 24, 2014
- Next update will be Aug. 6th -
Thanks to all who read our reports; your support makes all the work worthwhile.
God willing we will try to keep these reports going to share with you again this year..!


- We appreciate those who have been sending us reports - THANKS .!
And we welcome any new reports others wish to share with other anglers and we really enjoy those photos too..

- WOW, did it get Hot early this week with very few anglers out ( and we understand )..
This cool down is greatly welcome and feels Good.
Looks like some rain may be coming but next week forecast looks Good, so Fishing too should be GOOD..
With Summer weather, Be Sure To Protect yourself from the sun and the heat, drink plenty of liquids, Get out and ENJOY..!..
- Hope You All can Get out and ENJOY the Outdoors along some GOOD FISHING..!

We find those pesky Gnats are out and if you do too = 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..

- BULLFROG season is underway and runs through Aug 31 Bullfrogs may be taken by hand, fishing pole and line fishing, landing net, bow & arrow or bow and spear or gig. You must have a sport fishing license and limits are 8 bullfrogs daily limit with 16 bullfrogs possession limit

  - - Notes Of Interest : -

* There´s a New Bait & Tackle shop in Sterling - FISHEADS - behind Fineline Body Art at corner 3rd and Ave G
Owner Shannon says he has live bait and frozen for the Catfish anglers and more.
He also builds the SS Custom Fishing Rods (can find on FB) along with good supply of tackle.
If you are headed to the Rock River for some fishing, stop by FISHEADS or call 815-564-0406


- Three New Laws go into effect Jan. 1, 2015 to help Improve Safety and Education in Illinois´ Waterways making outdoor recreation safe and enjoyable for everyone.
The three new laws expand boating safety education, improve safety and awareness of water skiers and tubers and increase penalties for those who operate watercraft under the influence.
Senate Bill 3434 allows for the seizure of a watercraft used in the commission of certain offenses related to operating under the influence. The new rules bring penalties for boating under the influence more in line with those for operating a motor vehicle while impaired by drugs or alcohol.
Senate Bill 3433 requires all persons born after Jan. 1, 1998 to take and pass a boating safety course validated by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and hold a valid boating safety certificate before they can operate a motorboat with an engine over 10 horsepower.
Senate Bill 2731, which mandates that the operator of any watercraft that is towing a person, such as a water skier or tuber, must display a bright orange flag measuring not less than 12 inches per side. The flag must be displayed from the time the person to be towed leaves the boat until that person returns to the boat at the conclusion of the activity.
So far in 2014, there have been 16 reported boating fatalities on Illinois waterways. Increased boating safety education and responsible boating practices may have prevented many of these fatalities.


* One big thing to remember is no matter how bad the fishing may be for us anglers, those Bait Shop owners have tried to keep fresh baits for us all.
Please make sure to stop by those local (family run) bait shops for your bait, supplies and for current reports.
This will help to assure they make enough to stay in business and will be there for all us anglers when we need bait.
- - - - - -

- Here is a YouTube VIDEO
Demonstration on how to use FIZARDS for Panfish, Catfish, Walleye, Bass, Trout, & other Gamefish..


- 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 :
-- The River has dropped and up near Spring Valley it is reported as clearing up some..
- Catfish are FAIR-GOOD on dip baits and cut baits
- Reports of a few White Bass near Hennepin on jigs and on blade baits.

-- We noticed some ponds have a lot of floating weed mats - looks like scum frog time..!
- Bass were FAIR along weed edges on plastics or small spinners with topwater baits working early and late in day.
- Bluegills were FAIR-GOOD in the weed pockets or along weed edge - look for those ..

  -   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 :
" Norfork Lake is at normal pool for the summer with water temperature in the low 80s and water visibility is stained. The Stripers & Hybrids are feeding on crawdads in 35 to 40 foot of water on the flats near the old river channel. The bite begins before dawn and continues until 8 AM. Once the sun is bright, move off into the channel. Stay in 80 to 120 feet of water, the stripers are starting to school and the schools are roaming along the old river channel next to the flats. Live bait is the most effective method to catch a striper, but stripers are now being caught trolling using umbrella and Alabama rigs. Also spoons have produced a few nice fish. I caught stripers near the dam, the Brushy Creek area, and in Big Creek. The method was down lines, 2 oz sinker, with 6 foot leader counted down to depth of the stripers. I took Sara & Chris out and they caught their limit of stripers. Now is the time to get out on the lake. The stripers are on the feed and the action will continue.
The Walleye have moved to their summer pattern and can be caught by trolling crank baits, nightcrawlers on worm harnesses, and spoons. The walleye are staying between 25 and 30 foot of water on the flats, brush piles, and rounded points. Look at East Pigeon Creek, the Panther Bay area, Hand Cove, and the flats leading into Float Creek. "
-- Also check out Tom´s Blog for Summer Striper Tactics on June 27th post.

BANNER MARSH - 3 access points on Routes 24/9 3 mi. NE of Banner, with a 25HP limit. (309-647-9184)
- Bass were FAIR on plastic, small spinners and crankbait along weed edge and timber with some on topwater (& Scum Frogs) early or late.
- Bluegills were FAIR-GOOD with several small fish on waxies and crickets
- Catfish were FAIR on cut bait, liver and dip baits with evenings best recently.

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.
- Bass were FAIR on plastics, crankbaits along weed edges and near dam and some on topwater in mornings.
- Bluegills remain FAIR-GOOD but small on wax worms and red worms along weed edge and near docks
- Crappie were FAIR-SLOW on minnows with many small fish in coves and around or over brush piles.
- Catfish were FAIR-GOOD last week on dip baits and chicken liver along edges of weeds and brush in early morning or later evening .

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.
  - We found Bass to be FAIR late last week
  on plastics and underspins with swimbait trailers
  along outer submerged weed edges.
  A few 14 inch fish and some of these 18 inchers
  with a couple 20 inch fish too.
  Water temps were 77 - 79 with stained water.

EMIQUON PRESERVE - Between Havana and Dickson Mounds Museum on IL Route 78
For more info and details on Emiquon, go to
-- Jack tells us Bass were little Slower last week on plastics but caught Bass (and couple Crappie) on a small spinner bait and trolled the ditch edges back toward the ramp.
He also caught Crappie on a fluke.
His buddy who fished earlier last week found large & fat Bluegills to be FAIR-GOOD on worms fishing among scattered clumps of moss where he also caught several Bass on the same bait.

Mike Conlin (Retired-Illinois DNR Fisheries Chief) has started an online petition to
"Stop The Proposed Project Endangering Emiquon Preserve".

Mike urges us all to read and signing the petition.   It is very easy to do..
.. just Click on this Link to view the petition and sign on to support this effort.
* New permits are required for boating and fishing each year and 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.
- -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
during waterfowl hunting season when fishing is allowed only between Noon and sunset.
- * NO boating, fishing or ice skating access before 12:00 pm during waterfowl hunting season & 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.
- Tom (TLS) tells us Saugeye are little SLOW but he was able to catch a Nice 23 incher that weighted 4# 3oz on a jig & leech.
He also wanted to say " Thanks to Mike of Mike´s Minnow Bucket near El Paso for the Awesome bait that catches fish.!"
- Bass are FAIR on plastics, spinners and crankbaits along weed edges and some on topwater real late in evening
- Bluegills are FAIR on waxies and crickets.
- Catfish were FAIR on cut baits, liver and dip baits
- Crappie were SLOW-FAIR this past week with a few on trolled crankbaits.
- WhiteBass were FAIR-SLOW early and late in day near big coves..
* The Bait Shop & Boat Rental are Open 7 days/week from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
For detail check

-- Lake Hours are daily until sunset; launch opens at 6am, shore-fishing at 6:30am.
- Catfish are FAIR on cut baits and dip baits.
- Crappie were SLOW.
- Walleye were FAIR-SLOW late last week on jig and minnow.

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.
- Bass are FAIR along weed edges on plastics, spinners and crankbaits with some on topwater late in day
- Bluegills were FAIR but small on waxies and crickets near weed edge, docks and sea walls
- Catfish were FAIR on cut baits, liver and Hoss´s Hawg Bait dip baits from Mike´s Minnow Bucket west of El Paso
- Guide Paul Center tells us Crappie are FAIR with many mid-sized fish on jigs and/or minnows around deeper docks along with a few trolling.
- Hybrid Striper were SLOW-FAIR trolling and watching for surface feeding fish in evenings
  Nick sent these photos of nice catfish caught on cut bait mid-day by his buddies over weekend on Bloomington.
The photo on left is Blake with his 15 pound Channel Cat and Vinny on right with his 15 pound Flathead.

  Guide Paul Center sent this photo of the
  best crappie a client has caught in his 21 years of guiding.
  Breine Gentry of Clinton IL gave a father´s day
  fishing trip to her dad, the outing took place last week.
  Breine caught this Huge Crappie over 16 inches and
  all her Dad could say was "That is a trophy"
  And for Central IL - we agree.!

We have had anglers say to us: Give shout outs to Mike´s Minnow Bucket again this year for ´Premium´ minnows. Great bait, even better than last year, nice new sign too. Note: Don´t worry if the garage doors are down, he´s just trying to keep the morning sun off the bait tanks.
*- For Bait if you come to lake from the north, stop by Mike´s Minnow Bucket 2.7 miles west of I-39 from El Paso on US 24.
Hours are opening at 3:00pm Mon - Thur and All Day Fri, Sat & Sun. with A Great supply of Good minnow, worms and more. This is also where you can get Hoss´s Hawg Bait, call Mike at 309-303-2375 and he will be there for you..

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)
-- Not much reported again from here
- Bluegills were FAIR but small on waxies and crickets.
- Catfish were FAIR on dip baits in evenings

  Signs posting
  City Ordinances
  and Regulations
  for Lake Eureka

* Mike´s Minnow Bucket 2.7 miles west of I-39 from El Paso on US 24. Hours are opening at 3:00pm Mon - Thur and All Day Fri, Sat & Sun. A Great supply of Good minnow, worms and more. This is also where you can get Hoss´s Hawg Bait, call Mike at 309-303-2375 and he will be there for you..

LAKE SHELBYVILLE - Between Shelbyville and Sullivan - LAKE INFO LINE (217) 774-2020 and LAKE PROJECT OFFICE (217) 774-3951. *On June 5th the IDNR stocked 255,978 sauger into Lake Shelbyville from the nursery pond adjacent to the lake. It is hoped that a self-sustaining sauger fishery can be created for this lake.
And some 111,000 walleye fingerlings were also stocked by DNR hatcheries in May.

- Here is report from Guide Steve Welch for July 21 - 27th: " We have seen the lake come up a foot and a half this week but it still remains very clear and the fishing has not slowed any at least for the crappie. Currently the lake in at 603.8 or roughly four-feet over summer pool. Water temps are bouncing around the e80s mark.
What I have seen on the north end is that the very distinct thermocline we had has now broken up. This has fish scattered somewhat and some have moved shallow. Minnows are still the best way to catch them. I am still using brush and down trees at about fifteen-feet of water. My Brush Bugs in chartreuse and pearl have been working well. Every day we are getting a fish or two at fourteen-inches or better. So we are seeing some real nice fish as well as plenty of fish as we are still catching over a hundred a day.
The white bass are scattered and some are being caught shallow in the flooded weeds. We have not had much wind this past week so that bite has slowed.
I have seen a few walleye caught trolling crankbaits out on the flats but they are scattered as well.
My August is wide open if anyone wants to get in on this fantastic crappie fishing. Just check my website at www.LakeShelbyvilleGuide.Com "

- We also hear the Catfish are GOOD on dip baits in mornings and evenings..

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
** The Depot Bait and Tackle Store in Victoria, 2 blocks south of U.S. 167 on Union St. has live bait & tackle open from an just before sunrise till 7 - 8pm, 7 days a week!! Stop in and tell Duane & Becky we said HI, or give them a call at 309-879-2401
- Bass were FAIR on plastics, spinners or crankbaits along weed edges and near timber and on topwater early
- Bluegills are FAIR-GOOD on crickets with some on wax worms too along weed edges and pockets
- Catfish were just FAIR on cut baits, dip baits and crawlers in evenings
- Crappie are FAIR on jig/minnows fished in 18 foot water with slow dropping.
- Walleye were FAIR during the cool dawn last week on minnows and leeches in 12-14 foot water along weed edges with a couple nice fish late last week.
-- Check with them at The Depot Bait and Tackle Store in Victoria for Bait & current reports and info on Fishing in the area as well as the new lakes.

- Bass were FAIR on plastics, jigs and crankbaits around cover, along break in 8-12 foot water, along bridge piers and along rocks.
- Bluegills are FAIR on wax worms, red worms and crickets along shoreline cover and rocks with Sailboat Harbor still a good shore fishing spot.
- Crappie were FAIR-GOOD recently mostly on minnow and a few on jigs out around and over the deeper brush with several small fish being caught.
- Reports of some WhiteBass on jigs/twisters or inline spinners in bays, along rocks and around bridges.
  - Harold and Brad Clem
  from Kankakee and Wilmington
 had a blast catching catfish on Rend Lake fishing
 with Guide Ric Barth of Todd Gressner Outdoors.
 They ended up with 40 Channel Catfish
 all caught on rod reel and Hoss´s Hawg bait.

- 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 and they have a bait shop too..
* Gun Creek Bait & Tackle were You can get your jar or bucket of Hoss´s Hawg Bait...!
- - Here is this week's Fishing Report from US Army Corps - Please fish safely! Always wear your life jacket on the water! Rend Lake Project Office/Visitor Center at 618-724-2493

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at Rend Lake has partnered with the Rend Lake Lunker Busters and Mt. Vernon Winnelson Company, to provide collection stations for recycling monofilament fishing line. Monofilament fishing line can be damaging to our environment and harmful to wildlife and visitors when not disposed of properly. Each year hundreds of animals are entangled in discarded fishing line. In addition, the improperly discarded fishing line causes damage to boat motors and can even entangle swimmers and divers. The recycling containers for monofilament line are provided at various locations around Rend Lake at many boat ramps. While at the lake, visitors are asked to place all used fishing line in the newly placed recycle containers but please do not place cans, bottles, or other trash in these special fishing line recycling bins. All used line that is collected will be sent to a manufacturer in Iowa where it will be made into fish habitat structures. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers encourages all visitors to pitch in to make Rend Lake a safer and more beautiful place to recreate. 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 remain FAIR along weed edges and timber on plastics, crankbaits and topwater in late evening.
- Bluegills were FAIR-GOOD.
- Catfish are FAIR-GOOD on shrimp, dip bait and liver.
- Crappie were SLOW-FAIR on minnows over cribs and brush with several small fish caught.
- Muskie were SLOW-FAIR this past week
- Walleye were FAIR on leeches and minnows along weed edges with most 14-20 inch and a 26 incher over weekend.

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 Report -
Stop by Larry´s Restaurant & Family Bar at south end for their Awesome homemade tenderloins along with current reports.
-- Check with J & R Riverside Bait & Tackle in Pekin on your way for bait and latest reports.


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.
* Joe of Ol´ Joe´s Bait and Tackle on Rt. 54 in DeWitt is Open from 5am - 5pm 7 days a week for ALL your fishing needs and full line license service.
- We can highly recommend you stop by or call Joe at 217-935-6244.
** Also, this is the place to get your   FIZARDS  .!
- Ol´ Joe´s report for this week.. " Crappie are being caught on shiners about 10 feet deep at the bridges.
Catfish are just about everywhere using all blood baits and cheese baits.
Bluegill all over lake on red worms and wax worms.
Stripers up to 10 lb at the bridges early mornings and late afternoons using chicken liver, shrimp and crawdads if you can find them.
WhiteBass are Fair on most of lake, just watch for surface action.
Be Safe & Enjoy.!"
-- Ol´ Joe´s Clinton Lake Catfish tournament next date is Aug. 2nd at Weldon ramp from 6pm - 12pm.
* Read a post few weeks ago where an angler had this to Share : "Shout-Out to Ol´ Joe´s Bait shop in Dewitt for the great info and bait. Any questions about the lake, ask them. They will put you on the fish for sure.! "
Check with Joe for latest update and Ol´ Joe says "Be Safe & Enjoy !" ..

COFFEEN LAKE - Southeast of Hillsboro off Rt 127 or south of Coffeen off Rt 185, site office 217-537-3351.
-- There is a 25hp motor limit.
- Water temps in Main lake were near 90 to near 100 in the hot-water arm and fairly clear - near pool.
- Bass were somewhat FAIR mostly on soft plastics and crankbaits off points with some caught on crawlers too.
- Bluegills were FAIR on waxies and part crawler
- Catfish remain FAIR-GOOD on dip baits, shrimp, crawlers and cut baits.
- Crappie are POOR

LAKE SPRINGFIELD - At Springfield off I-55 Exit 94 and go the east.
- Bass are FAIR-SLOW on plastics, spinners and some crankbaits.
- Bluegills were little SLOW.
- Catfish are FAIR-GOOD on most baits.
- Crappie were SLOW
- WhiteBass were FAIR this past week
-- 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

NEWTON LAKE - 16-17 miles southeast of Effingham off Route 33.
-- This Report by the Newton Lake State Fish & Wildlife Area:
- Bass were FAIR on plastics and deep diving crankbaits with some on topwater around shore cover in mornings.
- Bluegills were SLOW-FAIR with mostly small fish on wax worms and red worms
- Catfish are GOOD on cut bait, crawlers, shrimp and dip baits

POWERTON LAKE - One mile south of Pekin off Route 29 along Manito Blacktop.
---- site Office 309-968-7135
-- SUMMER HOURS (May 1st - Sept. 30th): 6am-8pm   WINTER HOURS (Oct. 1st - April 30th): 8am - 4pm
- Very few reports mostly Catfishing was FAIR on most baits with mostly average fish
* Check with at J & R Riverside Bait & Tackle in Pekin (309) 347-3793 on your way for bait and latest reports or his full line of tackle and some tips.. Tell them Larry sent you..!
* Oh Yeah, this is a place to get FIZARDS...! And the Rockport Rattler jigs with no lead in them.
Also check out their creek chubs, shiners and goldfish ..!

Bait Shop HOURS: Mon - Sat 6am to 6pm and Sun 6am to 4pm..

SANGCHRIS LAKE - South of Springfield off I-55 Exit 82 and go east on Route 104 about 10 miles, with a 25HP limit.
-- Sangchris Lake site office at 217/498-9208 from 8 a.m.- 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.
- Bass were FAIR on plastics, spinners or crankbaits along outer weedlines or near timber with some on topwater early.
- Bluegills were FAIR-SLOW mostly small fish along weed edges in west arm on waxies and crickets.
- Catfish were FAIR on cut baits, crawlers and dip bait.
- Crappie were SLOW.
* The West Boat ramp remains Closed as of July 15th; construction has resumed with a completion date of early summer.
-- Check with Trevor at Big Reds 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 last fall..

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Check with them for all your fishing or hunting outfitter
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After a day on Lake
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