Big Creek Lake

General Information

County: Polk
Location: 2 miles north of Polk City
Acres: 814.00
Maximum Depth: 53.4 ft. (2006 - Data collected as part of the statewide lake mapping program.)
Motoring Restrictions: No Size Limit at No Wake

Nearby Parks

Big Creek State Park

Amenities

Amenities at Big Creek Lake include:
  • Boat Access
  • Fishing Jetty
  • Accessible Pier
  • Boat Rental
  • Picnic Area
  • Beach
  • Trails
  • Accessible Facilities
  • Playground
  • Restrooms
  • Good/Excellent Shorefishing
  • Hard Surface Boat Ramp
  • Fish Cleaning Station
As of Wednesday January 16 the lake has mostly skimmed over again. No angling is occurring, but conditions should improve with the cold weather this weekend.
Central Iowa ice conditions have started improving, but poor conditions still exist south of Highway 30. Conditions should improve greatly over this weekend. For information on Central Iowa lakes and rivers contact Ben Dodd at 641-891-3795 or Andy Otting at 515-204-5885.
Download Printable Lake Map
Download Printable Fishing Structures Map

You can zoom in on the map for bathymetric information for some lakes

  • 6/30/2017 - 400 Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) (2")
  • 6/29/2017 - 10,625 Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) (2")
  • 5/10/2017 - 315 Muskellunge (13.1")
  • 4/28/2017 - 1,817,000 Walleye (fry)
  • 10/26/2017 - 2,562 Walleye (8.9")
  • 10/26/2017 - 87 Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) (7.2")
  • 10/23/2017 - 1,885 Walleye (9")
  • fall 2016 - 4,401 Walleye (9.8")
  • 6/16/2016 - 8,151 Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) (1.3")
  • 5/2/16 - 1,834,500 Walleye (Fry)
  • 10/19/2015 - 4,070 Walleye (8")
  • 05/11/2015 - 300 Muskellunge (12.3")
  • 04/28/2015 - 1,766,000 Walleye (Fry)
  • 10/24/2014 - 4,400 Walleye (8")
  • 05/12/2014 - 2,000,000 Walleye (Fry)
  • 10/28/2013 - 4,100 Walleye (8.9")
  • 05/14/2013 - 1,048 Muskellunge (12.5")
  • 05/08/2013 - 1,800,000 Walleye (Fry)
  • 10/29/2012 - 4,717 Walleye (8.5")
  • 05/24/2012 - 32,097 Walleye (1.6")
  • 05/01/2012 - 1,100 Muskellunge (12.6")
  • 04/20/2012 - 1,766,000 Walleye (Fry)
  • 10/24/2011 - 3,997 Walleye (8.3")
  • 09/08/2011 - 2,335 Channel Catfish (8.3")
  • 06/10/2011 - 31,780 Walleye (1.7")
  • 05/12/2011 - 1,828,625 Walleye (Fry)
  • 10/20/2010 - 7,172 Walleye (9.6")
  • 10/12/2009 - 4,415 Walleye (9.4")
  • 09/18/2009 - 4,800 Channel Catfish (8.0")
  • 05/08/2009 - 1,100 Muskellunge (14.0")
The Fishing Regulations brochure is available for download. The summaries listed below are a partial listing provided for your benefit.

  • Bluegill
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: 25 fish
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: No daily limit on private waters
  • Channel Catfish
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined: channel, blue and flathead catfish, 8 fish
    • Possession Limit: combined: channel, blue and flathead catfish, 30 fish
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other:
  • Common Carp
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: none
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: May be taken by hand fishing, by snagging, by spear or by bow and arrow, day or night.
  • Freshwater Drum
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: none
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: May be taken by hand fishing, by snagging, by spear or by bow and arrow, day or night.
  • Largemouth Bass
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined black bass, 3 fish
    • Possession Limit: combined black bass, 6 fish
    • Length Limit: 18-inch minimum
    • Other:
  • Muskellunge
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined: muskellunge and tiger muskellunge, 1 fish
    • Possession Limit: combined: muskellunge and tiger muskellunge, 1 fish
    • Length Limit: 40-inch minimum
    • Other:
  • Smallmouth Bass
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined black bass, 3 fish
    • Possession Limit: combined black bass, 6 fish
    • Length Limit: 15-inch minimum
    • Other:
  • Walleye
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: 3 fish
    • Possession Limit: 6 fish
    • Length Limit: 15-inch minimum length limit
    • Other: No more than one walleye longer than 20 inches may be taken per day
  • White Bass
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: none
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other:
  • White Crappie
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined black and white crappie, 25 fish
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: No daily limit on private waters
  • White Sucker
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: none
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: May be taken by hand fishing, by snagging, by spear or by bow and arrow, day or night.
  • Yellow Perch
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: 25 fish
    • Possession Limit: 50 fish
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other:
2018 fish surveys showed good numbers of 10- to 14-inch largemouth bass behind a respectable group of 15.5- to 21.5-inch fish. There is a fair population of smallmouth bass found mostly in the lower portion of the lake with sizes between 8- and 16.5-inches surveyed. The top size of bluegills has decreased since pre-shad. Most bluegills are now topping out around 7 inches with a small portion of the population reaching 8 inches. Crappie populations are looking very good. There was a good group of 9.5- to 11-inch black crappies surveyed in 2018, with plenty of smaller fish behind them. White crappies surveyed were 9-to 11.5-inches with some topping 13.5 inches. Hybrid striped bass were stocked into Big Creek in 2016, 2017 and 2018 to take advantage of the large gizzard shad population. Hybrid striped bass fishing was very good during the late summer and fall of 2018. The oldest hybrids are around 18 inches. Walleye fishing was very good in 2018, especially in April, May and June before the gizzard shad hatch. 2018 fish surveys showed a good distribution of sizes from 11- to 28-inches. A good channel catfish population was surveyed with fish of all sizes up to 28 inches. The muskie population is slowly improving thanks to the fish barrier that has prevented them from leaving the lake over the spillway. Muskie densities are nearing management goals after a crash in 2008. (2019)

Contacts

Iowa-Caught Fish Are Safe to Eat, In Almost All Cases

The vast majority of Iowa’s streams, rivers and lakes offer safe and high-quality fish that pose little or no threat to human health if consumed. Some limitations may apply for young children and pregnant women. Here’s a Fish Consumption Fact Sheet from the Iowa DNR and the Iowa Dept. of Public Health for more information. Here is a list of current fish consumption advisories for Iowa lakes and rivers.