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Summer fishing is in full swing at area lakes, ponds and rivers. This is the time of year that’s great for taking the kids fishing. Some of Evanston’s better fishing spots are also great family spots.

The Skokie Lagoons are probably the easiest place to go fishing and enjoy a family picnic. There are a lot of places around the Lagoons that make great picnic spots that are also outstanding shore fishing locations. Some favorites are north of the Tower Road parking area. One can park there or long Forest Way Drive and walk into pools #4, #5 and #6. There is no need to worry about water depth – it is not that deep, so concentrate on the structure. Pool #6 is especially good on the west side for walleye, Pool #4 has some really good largemouth bass, and all three pools have panfish. There are plenty of portable bathrooms around the area, and an ice cream truck parks all day at Tower Road and Forest Way Drive.

Busse Lake(s) are another great place to take the family and enjoy an afternoon with fishing and a picnic. The lake is divided into three pools, it has a number of fishing piers with easy access, and miles of walk-able shoreline for more fishing that is less crowded. Another plus is that there is a boat rental facility there for people who want to get to some of those out-of-the-way fish locations. The weekly reports have the south pool showing largemouth bass activity on in-line spinners. Walleyes have been biting on night crawlers and the panfish have been biting on wax worms, red worms and small white jigs.

Of course, there’s always Lovelace Park right here in Evanston. Every Saturday morning (10 a.m. – 1 p.m.) an adult can take the kids fishing for free: The City supplies the fishing poles, bait and instruction to make it easy to get the young ones started. Lots of bluegills and catfish are being caught, as well as a few crappies.

To take advantage of these great summer days, pack a picnic basket, a cooler, the fishing poles and the family – and get out there enjoy yourselves. Until next time … keep a tight line.

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