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The short spell of “Indian Summer” has been really nice for fishing. The previous cooler weather lowered water temperatures on most lakes and late-season turnovers have been impacting fishing success on a lot of the lakes. Hopefully by next week most fishing waters will have settled into steady fall patterns. With the turnover on Lake Michigan, the bass action has been pretty light, with only small bass taking the bait. This week perch were not to be found, but that will surely change by next weekend.

The reports from north of the border were mixed this past week. Lake Mendota in Madison was still going through turnover so the bite was almost non-existent, but up on Lake Delevan the reports are much better. The northern pike bite has been terrific with a number of pike over 10 lbs., with most action coming in the afternoon.

The local area fishing reports have all been positive the past couple of weeks. The Illinois River at Starved Rock has been reporting low water levels so caution is advised down there, but the bite has been across the board all species: white bass, catfish, sauger, walleye and Asian carp. The best fishing has been right down at the dam with minnows being the best bait, followed by twister tails on jigs. The Skokie Lagoons are still providing some quality angling and with the water temperature cooling the crappie bite should be on the rise.

The City fishing program at Lovelace Park is over for this year. I hope you took advantage of this one-of-a-kind program; it’ll start back up again in May of next year. There are still plenty of opportunities to take your kids fishing. With the autumn colors coming into their own, there is no better time to take the whole family out; Pack a picnic basket, take the camera (so you can capture that BIG fish you son or daughter lands) and enjoy the many lakes and ponds in our area. Until next time, keep a tight line.

Visit Dick at hookedonfishing@comcast.net.