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Iowa's Fishing Report

Sign up today for free weekly fishing information from Iowa’s fisheries experts. Learn the best hot spots and latest news about Iowa’s fishing opportunities from region to region. This weekly fishing forecast will be emailed directly to your inbox every Thursday!

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How to Read Our Weekly Iowa Fishing Report

DNR’s weekly fishing report is broken down by counties or regions – northwest, northeast, Mississippi river, southeast and southwest.

You can check the activity of your favorite lake or stretch of river within each region, including which species are being caught, a rating of the bite (slow, fair, good or excellent), as well as a hot bait or lure pattern.

Fishing reports may include information on stream or river flows (and if it is rising or dropping), ice conditions, depths that fish are biting (watch for trends if this changes), or safety issues like if the water suddenly becomes shallow in spots.

Fishing Podcasts

Each month, Jeff Kopaska of the Iowa DNR and Ross Peterson from KXnO Sports Fanatics get together to talk about fishing opportunities, seasons and events in Iowa and around the Midwest. They are often joined by other DNR staff and guest speakers.

The links below are the podcast recordings of their conversations, and can also be found on the iHeartRadio app.

2023 Podcast Links

January 2023 Fishing Report - ice fishing tips and safety, winter community trout stockings and fish stocking requests and data

February 2023 Fishing Report - tips for getting your gear ready for spring fishing, Mid Iowa Bassmasters Fishermen's Swap Meet, Iowa Walleye Challenge and new state record orangespotted sunfish

March 2023 Fishing Report -  spring community trout stockings, Iowa Walleye Challenge, Hook n" Paddle Passport, early season river fishing for walleyes and lake fishing for ice-out catfish

April 2023 Fishing Report - AJ Winter, Iowa DNR Outdoor Skills Specialist joins us to preview spring outdoor activities, plus trout stocking and walleye gillnetting

May 2023 Fishing Report - Clear Lake fishing, shovelnose sturgeon sampling, Iowa Wallaye Challenge local prizes and Hook n' Paddle Passport launch

June 2023 Fishing Report - Free Fishing Weekend, fishing community ponds, tips for kayak fishing

July 2023 Fishing Report - local angler, Richared Grimes joins us to talk about the Iowa Walleye Challenge, plus Des Moines area community fishing spots and the Hook n' Paddle Passport 

August 2023 Fishing Report - we answer questions posed by some central Iowa listeners, plus trout fishing and the Iowa State Fair

September 2023 Fishing Report - Chad Dolan, Iowa DNR fisheries biologist joins us with an update on the Lake Geode restoration project, plus fall fish stockings

December 2023 Fishing Report - 2024 Midwest Walleye Challenge preview, plus fishing Christmas gift ideas

February 2022 Fishing Report - Zak Slagle from the Ohio DNR joins us to talk about walleye populations, fishing and surveys at Lake Erie; plus plans for the Midwest Fish & Wildlife Conference hosted by Iowa DNR is Des Moines mid-February

March 2022 Fishing Report - Ben Neely, Kansas fishery biologist joins us to talk about a recent research project to determine if live scope sonar technology leads to anglers catching more/bigger fish; plus spring community trout stockings

April 2022 Fishing Report - new state record smallmouth buffalo, plus tips for catching trout in community fishing ponds and annual walleye gillnetting efforts

June 2022 Fishing Report - fishing tips and hotspots, plus sturgeon sampling on the Cedar River, Free Fishing Weekend and Iowa Walleye Challenge

August 2022 Fishing Report - live from the Iowa State Fair; stop by the aquarim in the DNR building to see fish from across Iowa; plus local fishing information 

September 2022 Fishing Report - new community fishing ponds, fishing sampling and fishing tournaments 

October 2022 Fishing Report - fish diet research, fishing tournaments and the big walleye controversy on Lake Erie; plus fall fishing tips

November 2022 Fishing Report - Mike Siepker joins us to talk trout - stockings, spawning, management and more

December 2022 Fishing Report - Hank Kholer joins us to talk about his One4Water trip and new book; plus ice fishing season preview

January 2021 Fishing Report - Kevan Paul joins us to talk about ice fishing on Clear Lake

February 2021 Fishing Report - fishing in community ponds, plus hybrid striped bass in Big Creek, and the hot yellow perch bite at Clear Lake

March 2021 Fishing Report - Corey Goldsworthy from the Minnesota DNR joins us to talk about the fishing options at Lake Superior, plus ice-out catfishing

April 2021 Fishing Report - Jay Rudacille, Iowa DNR Warm and Coolwater Fish Culture Supervisor, joins us to talk about the annual spring walleye collection, production and stocking, plus spring community trout stockings and fun fishing stories

May 2021 Fishing Report - Hank Kohler joins us to talk about his upcoming paddling trip from central Minnesota down the Mississippi River to the Gulf of Mexico to make people aware of and seek donations for clean water projects

July 2021 Fishing Report - Fish Local Community Fishing Program and river catfishing tips, plus trout stream sampling

September 2021 Fishing Report - freshwater drum fishing on the Mississippi River, plus drift fishing for crappie and recap of Iowa State Fair aquarium and courtyard presentations

October 2021 Fishing Report - fall fishing tips, plus fall community trout stockings annouced again this year and upcoming trout angler survey

December 2021 Fishing Report - Eric Brinkman, asssistant chief of aquatic conservation in Arkansas, joins us to talk about managing alligator gar in the Red River; plus the Iowa Urban Trout Challenge on urban/community trout locations through December 31, 2021.

Iowa Fishing Report

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Waterbody District Comments Date
Cedar River (above Nashua) Northeast Chance of rain Friday evening. Temperatures variable with highs upper 70's to lows in 40's and breezy. Turkey season is now in full swing. For more information, please contact the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 04/11 09:47
Cedar River (above Nashua) Northeast Anglers doing well on a variety of fish. Warmer weather should spark new activity. Water levels remain low. 04/11 09:47
Cedar River (above Nashua) Northeast Smallmouth Bass - Excellent: Smallies taking a variety of tackle. Anglers finding fish below dams. 04/11 09:47
Cedar River (above Nashua) Northeast Walleye - Good: Jigs tipped with live baits like minnows working for walleye. Find eddies or drop-offs for best luck. 04/11 09:47
Cedar River (above Nashua) Northeast Channel Catfish - Fair: Catfish are taking dead chub fished on or near river bed. 04/11 10:13
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Northeast Angling has been fair on the interior rivers with the up and down weather pattern. There have been no reports on the surrounding area lakes. Trout streams remain in excellent condition and the stocking is fully underway. For further information contact your local bait shops for the most recent information. 04/11 08:59
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Northeast Anglers are catching a few walleye and northern pike on the Cedar River. 04/11 08:59
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Northeast Walleye - Good: Anglers have been doing best casting and retrieving lead head jigs tipped with plastics and a minnow. 04/11 08:59
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Northeast Northern Pike - Fair: Most catches have been from anglers targeting walleye, cast and retrieve lead head jigs tipped with plastics and a minnow. 04/11 08:59
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Northeast Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Anglers have been doing best casting and retrieving lead head jigs tipped with plastics and a minnow. 04/11 08:59
Decorah District Streams Northeast Chance of rain Friday evening. Temperatures variable with highs upper 70's to lows in 40's and breezy. Turkey season is now in full swing. For more information, please contact the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 04/11 09:47
Decorah District Streams Northeast Brook Trout - Fair: Brook trout taking a variety of flies imitating gnats, midges, caddis or an occasional mayfly. Use care not to alarm it when approaching the stream in gin clear water. 04/11 09:47
Decorah District Streams Northeast Streams maintain nice holdover numbers for the casual angler. With the start of turkey season, anglers should avoid wearing red, white, or blue. The calendar is now available on-line at https://www.iowadnr.gov/Fishing/Trout-Fishing. 04/11 09:47
Decorah District Streams Northeast Brown Trout - Good: Best time to fish spooky brown's is when water is off color. Use lures that mimic small minnows or midges. 04/11 09:47
Decorah District Streams Northeast Rainbow Trout - Good: Find rainbows in head ends of pools. Fish the afternoon hatches for fun action. 04/11 09:47
Lake Delhi Northeast Angling has been fair on the interior rivers with the up and down weather pattern. There have been no reports on the surrounding area lakes. Trout streams remain in excellent condition and the stocking is fully underway. For further information contact your local bait shops for the most recent information. 04/11 08:59
Lake Delhi Northeast There have been reports of anglers catching some black crappie on Lake Delhi. 04/11 09:10
Lake Delhi Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: Locate woody structure on the river around Manchester. Try vertical jigging a lead head jig tipped with a colored tube jig for some crappie. 04/11 09:12
Lake Hendricks Northeast Chance of rain Friday evening. Temperatures variable with highs upper 70's to lows in 40's and breezy. Turkey season is now in full swing. For more information, please contact the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 04/11 09:47
Lake Hendricks Northeast Fish activity improving as water temperatures warm. 04/11 09:47
Lake Hendricks Northeast Bluegill - Fair: 04/11 09:47
Lake Hendricks Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: Try angling higher in water column late afternoon. Also fish along the rocky shoreline where water warms quicker. 04/11 09:47
Lake Hendricks Northeast Largemouth Bass - Fair: Fish along drop-offs or around structure. Crankbaits work well. 04/11 09:47
Lake Meyer Northeast Chance of rain Friday evening. Temperatures variable with highs upper 70's to lows in 40's and breezy. Turkey season is now in full swing. For more information, please contact the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 04/11 09:47
Lake Meyer Northeast Fish activity improving as water temperatures warm. Water temperature about 47 degrees. 04/11 09:47
Lake Meyer Northeast Black Crappie - Slow: Fish habitat or structure higher in water column for best luck. 04/11 09:47
Lake Meyer Northeast Bluegill - Slow: Fish around jetties. Use small jig tipped with waxworm. 04/11 09:47
Lake Meyer Northeast Largemouth Bass - Slow: Find bass along drop-offs or near woody structure near shoreline. 04/11 09:47
Maquoketa River (above Monticello) Northeast Angling has been fair on the interior rivers with the up and down weather pattern. There have been no reports on the surrounding area lakes. Trout streams remain in excellent condition and the stocking is fully underway. For further information contact your local bait shops for the most recent information. 04/11 08:59
Maquoketa River (above Monticello) Northeast There have been a few reports on the Maquoketa River of walleye and black crappie being caught. Try fishing below the Lake Delhi Dam as well for walleye and crappie. 04/11 08:59
Maquoketa River (above Monticello) Northeast Walleye - Fair: Anglers do best when casting and retrieving lead head jigs tipped with plastics and a minnow. 04/11 08:59
Maquoketa River (above Monticello) Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: Locate woody structure on the river around Manchester. Try vertical jigging a lead head jig tipped with a colored tube jig for some crappie. 04/11 09:09
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Upper Mississippi River levels are still rising and predicted to level off next week. Water temperature is in the upper 40's. Water quality has improved some. Look for current breaks or areas with little current as the river is rising. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Water level at Lynxville has risen several feet at 616 feet and expected to reach near 617 feet. Water temp at Lock & Dam 9 in Lynxville is 49 degrees. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Yellow Perch - Fair: Perch are well into the spawn and biting on plastics or live minnows and worms. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Walleye - Good: The walleye spawn is on. Fish the tailwaters or off tips of deeper wing-dams with hair jigs tipped with a minnow. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Channel Catfish - Fair: Catfish anglers have been catching a few channel cats this week on crawlers. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Sauger - Good: Anglers are catching some nice sized sauger on jigs and minnows below the dam. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Black Crappie - No Report: Fish the flooded timber as the river rises using light tackle and small plastic baits for spring crappie. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Northern Pike - Fair: Northern pike fishing will pick up as they finish the spawn. Fish the shallows along weed beds in backwaters. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Upper Mississippi River levels are still rising and predicted to level off next week. Water temperature is in the upper 40's. Water quality has improved some. Look for current breaks or areas with little current as the river is rising. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Water level at Guttenberg has risen several feet at the tailwaters this week at 7 feet and expected to rise to 8.3 feet. Water quality is improving and temperature is 45 degrees. Tailwater fishing at the Lock & Dam will be more difficult with rising water. The dock is now in at the Guttenberg ramp. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Yellow Perch - Fair: Perch are biting on plastics or live minnows and worms. Fish from shore at the Guttenberg boat ramp. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Sauger - Good: Sauger are biting on a jig and minnow, however a lot of sorting is happening. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Walleye - Good: The walleye spawn is on. Fish the tailwaters or off tips of deeper wing-dams with hair jigs tipped with a minnow. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Channel Catfish - Fair: Catfish anglers have been catching a few channel cats this week on crawlers. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Northern Pike - Fair: Northern pike fishing will pick up as they finish the spawn. Fish backwaters along weed edges. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Black Crappie - No Report: Fish the flooded timber as the river rises using light tackle and small plastic baits for spring crappie. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Recent snows and cool weather pattern limited fishing but now water is starting to warm again, and anglers are returning to the river. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast The river is stable at Dubuque with the level at Lock and Dam 11 near 7.0 feet and 9.4 feet at the RR bridge. Water temperature is around 45, and the water clarity is good. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Northern Pike - Slow: The pike spawn should be over, and pike will start a post spawn feeding pattern. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Sauger - Slow: It was an off and on Spring for walleyes and sauger. Usually not a lot of big fish being caught but many small fish which bodes well into the future. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Black Crappie - Slow: A few Black Crappie are being caught on wood in deeper backwater lakes. Bite should return after water warms. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Yellow Perch - Slow: It should be a good year for yellow perch but maybe this spawning season might be a tad difficult for them. They, like the pike, spawn in flooded vegetated areas. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Recent snows and cool weather pattern limited fishing but now water is starting to warm again, and anglers are returning to the river. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Rainbow Trout - Excellent: The kids trout pond north of the DNR fisheries station is now stocked with trout and can provide fun action for your kids throughout early Spring. If you plan to keep trout please limit yourself to 2 trout per child so we can keep good fishing in the pond throughout the winter. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast The water level in Pool 13 is stable and is near 7.5 feet at Bellevue. Water clarity is poor, and the water temperature is around 46 degrees. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Channel Catfish - Good: Channel catfish can be caught especially in rising and dirty water. Any of the prepared smelly baits should attract abundant catfish. Move often if you do not get bites. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Northern Pike - Fair: Pike spawn should be over, and they usually start putting on the feed bag immediately when done laying eggs. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Paddlefish - Slow: Paddlefish became more difficult to find after last raise. Rules can be a bit confusing for paddlefish snagging so please review them if you are unsure. The open season on the Mississippi River is March 1st through April 15th. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Walleye - Slow: Walleye usually bite poorly during the spawn and a few weeks after. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Yellow Perch - Slow: Some reports of yellow perch being caught on worm rigs in the backwater lakes. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Black Crappie - Slow: Find wood structure in deeper backwater areas. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Recent snows and cool weather pattern limited fishing but now water is starting to warm again, and anglers are returning to the river. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Channel Catfish - Good: Some catfish are being caught. Seems early but anglers who are targeting them can have good catches. Try cheese baits or cut shad for bait. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Paddlefish - Slow: Paddlefish may become more difficult to find with the rising water. Rules can be a bit confusing for paddlefish snagging so please review them if you are unsure. The open season on the Mississippi River is March 1st through April 15th. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Smallmouth Bass - Slow: Cloudy water is going to make it a tad more difficult to find feeding smallmouth. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast The water level is stabilizing at Fulton, near 10.7 feet, 5.7 feet at Camanche and 5.7 feet at LeClair. Temperature has fallen and is around 47 degrees. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Walleye - Slow: The bite has been tough as usual during the spawning season. Cold snowy weather just does not help either. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast Recent snows and cool weather pattern limited fishing but now water is starting to warm again, and anglers are returning to the river. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast Sauger - No Report: 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast The water level at Rock Island is stabilizing and near 8.6 feet. Water clarity is poor and water temperature has fallen to 47 degrees. 04/08 11:57
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Upper Mississippi River levels are still rising and predicted to level off next week. Water temperature is in the upper 40's. Water quality has improved some. Look for current breaks or areas with little current as the river is rising. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Water level at Lansing has risen to 8.6 feet and is expected to stabilize. Water temperature is 47 degrees. The docks are in at New Albin Landing. Use caution to not back into the scour hole off the end of the ramp. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Yellow Perch - Fair: Perch are biting on plastics or live minnows and worms. Fish Shore Slough, Lansing marina or Village Creek area. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Sauger - Good: Fish the tailwaters or off tips of deeper wing-dams with hair jigs tipped with a minnow. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Channel Catfish - Fair: Catfish anglers have been catching a few channel cats this week on crawlers. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Northern Pike - Fair: Northern pike fishing will pick up as they finish the spawn. Fish the shallows along weed beds in backwater lakes. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Walleye - Good: The walleye spawn is on. Fish the tailwaters or off tips of deeper wing-dams with hair jigs tipped with a minnow. 04/10 03:06
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: Fish the flooded timber as the river rises using light tackle and small plastic baits for spring crappie. 04/10 03:06
Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock) Northeast Angling has been fair on the interior rivers with the up and down weather pattern. There have been no reports on the surrounding area lakes. Trout streams remain in excellent condition and the stocking is fully underway. For further information contact your local bait shops for the most recent information. 04/11 08:59
Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock) Northeast There have been no reports on the Shell Rock River but walleyes should be on the post spawn bite. 04/11 08:59
Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock) Northeast Walleye - No Report: Anglers do best when casting and retrieving lead head jigs tipped with plastics and a minnow. 04/11 08:59
Turkey River (below Clermont) Northeast Chance of rain Friday evening. Temperatures variable with highs upper 70's to lows in 40's and breezy. Turkey season is now in full swing. For more information, please contact the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 04/11 09:47
Turkey River (below Clermont) Northeast Water clarity excellent but levels low. 04/11 10:17
Turkey River (below Clermont) Northeast White Sucker - Good: Sucker bite started. Use worm fished on stream bottom. 04/11 10:18
Turkey River (below Clermont) Northeast Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Find smallmouth bass in current breaks or rock ledges. A variety of tackle working. 04/11 10:19
Upper Iowa River (above Decorah) Northeast Chance of rain Friday evening. Temperatures variable with highs upper 70's to lows in 40's and breezy. Turkey season is now in full swing. For more information, please contact the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 04/11 09:47
Upper Iowa River (above Decorah) Northeast Water levels remain low with water temperatures beginning to creep into the 50's. 04/11 09:47
Upper Iowa River (above Decorah) Northeast Brown Trout - Fair: Try using a spinner or crank bait for brownies around current breaks or deeper holes. 04/11 09:47
Upper Iowa River (above Decorah) Northeast Walleye - Good: Use jig tipped with minnow for best luck. Find fish in slack water below dams. 04/11 09:47
Upper Iowa River (above Decorah) Northeast Smallmouth Bass - Good: 04/11 10:15
Upper Iowa River (above Decorah) Northeast White Sucker - Good: The sucker bite is turning on. Use a worm on the stream bottom. 04/11 10:16
Volga Lake Northeast Chance of rain Friday evening. Temperatures variable with highs upper 70's to lows in 40's and breezy. Turkey season is now in full swing. For more information, please contact the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 04/11 09:47
Volga Lake Northeast Fish activity improving with warmer water temperatures. 04/11 09:47
Volga Lake Northeast Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills around structure near shore. Use small jigs tipped with waxworms for best luck. 04/11 09:47
Volga Lake Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: Find crappie around structure. Use a flashy lure to attract attention. 04/11 09:47
Volga Lake Northeast Largemouth Bass - Fair: Fish the drop-offs, downed trees, or rocky areas. Use crankbaits or spinnerbaits for best luck. 04/11 09:47
Wapsi River (Tripoli to Troy Mills) Northeast Angling has been fair on the interior rivers with the up and down weather pattern. There have been no reports on the surrounding area lakes. Trout streams remain in excellent condition and the stocking is fully underway. For further information contact your local bait shops for the most recent information. 04/11 08:59
Wapsi River (Tripoli to Troy Mills) Northeast There have been a few reports on the Wapsipinicon River of anglers catching smallmouth bass and walleye. 04/11 08:59
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Iowa Fishing Report

Fishing Report System
This system allows you to view the current full fishing report, updated in real time! Search the report by location, specific fish, conditions or by water body.

January 2024 Fishing Report - 2024 fishing season preview and ice fishing safety

February 2024 Fishing Report - Gary Siegworth joins us to share highlights of his fisheries career with Iowa DNR, plus trout stockings and local events

March 2024 Fishing Report - we have our own March Madness fun with Iowa's Sweet 16 most fished for species bracket, plus an early spring fishing preview and tips

April 2024 Fishing Report - it's walleye spawning seasoning, plus community trout stockings and the Iowa Walleye Challenge