Best Walleye fishing Rock River

They do stock some pools on the Rock River, like the pool below Dixon, and pools above it. Contrary to fish stories put out by some unreliable sources, the best fishing on the pool below Sterling is around Phrophetsown. That’s where the best Flathead fishing is as well. The further down river you go, the better the fishing for Crappie, Bass and Walleye. Some Walleye to migrate to the dam in the spring but most get caught and kept so they don’t spawn or return the next year.

The best Bass fishing is also around P-town. Here is what the DNR says:

“Walleye are stocked each year into the Rock River to provide a quality sport fishery for this species. Fishing is generally good below the dams and at the mouths of the tributaries. Walleye ranging in size up to and over the state record weight have been caught in recent years in the upper Rock River and the Pecatonica River, a tributary of the Rock near Rockford. A survey conducted in the fall of 2014 near Dixon found a catch rate of 1 fish/ minute with a total of 101 fish of all sizes collected in one hour, well over the target rate for stocking success. The largest collected was just over 3 pounds. Anglers regularly report catching memorable-size walleye from Sterling up through Rockford. Best fishing for walleye is in the upper Rock River, north of Rockford, however anglers sometimes report good fishing near Dixon and at Prophetstown State Park. Regulation: Walleye, Sauger, or Hybrid Walleye – Wisconsin state line downstream to the Sears and Steel dams at Milan: 6 either singly or in combination; 14” minimum length limit. Walleye, Sauger, or Hybrid Walleye — Sears and Steel dams downstream to confluence with Mississippi River, State of Illinois (Rock Island County): 6 fish daily creel with no more than 1 walleye greater than 27” in total length; 15” minimum length limit with a 20-27” protected Slot Length Limit.”

“Smallmouth bass are common and abundant in the Rock River. A survey conducted in the summer of 2014 found very large numbers of young fish, indicating an excellent spawn. The catch rate was low for the larger fish though, (> 7”) with a rate of 0.6 fish/minute, but the catch rate of 1.2 fish/minute for all sizes was within the target rate. The overall number of adult fish (>11”) collected was a little low, with only 28% of the population in this size range, but this rate has increased slightly as compared to the survey of 2013. Prophetstown had the best number of larger fish with 44% of the adult smallmouth collected in this area > 11”! With the strong year classes produced in 2012, 2013, and again in 2014, the number of larger fish should improve significantly in the near future. Best fishing areas are in South Beloit, below the dam in Dixon, and downstream of Prophetstown State Park. Regulation: 6 black bass, singly or in combination, with no more than 3 smallmouth bass in the daily creel; 14” minimum length limit for smallmouths. Note: There is a closed season on smallmouth bass. All smallmouth bass caught between April 1 and June 15 must be immediately released alive and in good condition back into the waters from which they came.”

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Fishing Tournament Weigh-ins are Misleading

When guys hear about someone weighing weighing in a heavy stringer or fish, they think they must have a great spot full of big fish and everyone tries to figure out where that spot is. It can be maddening, I know, it’s happened to me and I did good in a lot of tournaments and knew better. You picture 2 guys going to a spot and pulling in big fish all day, but 99% of the time that isn’t the case. Instead you have 2 guys standing up working hard all day waiting for 6 bites, and most times that’s all it takes, 6 bites, 6 fish and win the tournament. Of course it’s usually more than that, but they just need the 6 good bites to win. Most times they don’t get them in one spot, no, they catch a fish here and there. When 2 guys are working hard all day it would be hard not to catch 6 fish. But things happen, muddy high water, fishing pressure, tournament pressure, fish moving, people fishing your best spots, a lot of things can go wrong.

People think that since I used to fish tournaments and do well, and guided out, that I always catch fish and know where the fish are, but I don’t. If I catch a couple, I’m fine with that, I just enjoy getting out. I don’t chase the hot bite like so many others do. The fish do a lot of moving and it is hard work to keep up with them. I don’t want to work, I want to have fun, get away from it all and watch and enjoy nature.

I like looking around. If I see boats, I go the other way. That is why I get so angry when they follow me. I am not catching a lot of fish, I am trying to get away from people. I like looking around for new spots, spots where no one else fishes. There isn’t fish in those places, but if they look promising I keep going back and checking on them. I do have go to spots where I can catch a couple to make it worth my while, and yes I get angry when people spy on me and try to clean those spots out. But then it isn’t worth going back and I will just go somewhere else and look around. Then when people follow me there too, it isn’t any easier to take.

The guys who chase fish stories are sitting on fish and just not catching any, so they worry about everyone else. well most times the fish just aren’t biting. If fish were always biting there wouldn’t be any more fish. I would recommend people not be so greedy, and be happy to catch a couple. If you want a lot of fish, stick with bluegill or catfish.

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Wildlife and Nature Prints for Sale

As I mentioned I bought a new Canon printer that prints up to 13×19″, and the print quality is outstanding! I just bought some shipping tubes. I am printing out 8x10s to check print quality and make adjustments if needed, so I plan on showing these on my website along with the digital copy, so people will know what they are getting. The prints will be on high quality printing paper.

The prints in ebay and at walmart are cheap paper and will wrinkle. Comparable prints online are really expensive. Right now I will sell prints for $10-$30 with free shipping. Most of the photos were taken with professional cameras in this area, either the Rock or Mississippi Rivers.

So far I have printed 150 8x10s and I have many more to go. Please help support a local business and buy my prints. The only place I sell them is be on my website.

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Photo Printer Tips – Canon Pro100

First Tip, don’t buy an epson workforce 7010, it is user unfriendly, refilling inks is a pain and probably won’t work as well. This printer never did print blacks well. It only has 4 colors. I wasted $250. Now that I have the canon pro100, my epson prints are not near as good. I have about 150 prints now and refilled all the cartridges at least once, but did get about 100 before I needed to start refilling. Follow instructions carefully, and watch videos online.

Refillable inks can only be bought from precision inks.com. I bought them and refilling went ok and prints look just as good.

Don’t buy blank cartridges, the chip won’t work so I wasted $60 to find that out. Instead, buy one set of new canon ink cartridges for $120, and you’ll have the second set that you need.

If you use hp glossy paper, it takes a long time for ink to dry. They won;t go into a plastic sleeve until they dry for about 30 minutes.

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Fisherman – You’re Being Watched

No matter where you go on the water, people are watching you. There is a constant stream of trucks with trailer hitches driving through boat ramps or any look out. People in houses and cabins along the river watch with spotting scopes. Some will race out there if the see you catch fish (watch out for a brown V-bottom around Big Slough). They will wait for Saturday and Sunday tournament blast offs to see if anyone fishes in their area.

People have the whole river to fish, no one owns the river. But that’s not what they want, they just want to go where the fish are biting, or where others are catching fish, most fish feed in peace because all the boats cling together like seagulls. For most it is just fine to help each other out. They hang out together, share information, like where they saw someone catch fish. That’s because most fisherman aren’t very good. No matter how good they are at catching fish, if they aren’t sitting over fish they are lost.

This week I was fishing by a mid pool boat ramp and catching a few fish. The next day there was 6 boats fighting over the area. The next day there was ten. It was a spot that no one hardly ever fishes, so I know I was being watched and talked about. I move to another area close by,. and the boats start migrating to me, pretty soon I am surround by boats again. It is a real circus over there anymore.

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