Kansas Fishing Report

Submitted by Anglers Like You

First Quarter 2003

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Copyright 1999-2003



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KS and OK Corps of Engineers Lake Levels | Wichita Lake Info

Guide Mike Cook Reports | Fishing Stories by Ned Kehde

BASSMASTER'S 40 page 2003 Tackle Guide is available free at Zeiners

Guide Mike Cook Reports about new regulations at Cheney Reservoir
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Click on photographs to see larger view

Coffey County Lake (Wolf Creek) is closed again. Orange alert.

March 31, 2003 - Kanopolis - Went to Kanopolis on Sunday March 30 and fished the dam and loaders point looking for spawning walleye. None to be found yet. Other anglers out had same result. Neal

March 31, 2003 - ? - Crappie are starting to group in coves and are biting on rosy reds, blues are good on cut shad, channels are good below dam, also in coves, and west side of lake large mouth bass are slow but are starting to come around in coves and shallows

March 31, 2003 - Perry - The crappie are biting at lake Perry. I went to the marina there this morning and caught a bucket full. They have to be at least ten inches to keep there. I caught a lot of undersized and keepers. If you can fish a slip you will do great! If you have to fish the bait store docks, then its a little slower due to the numbers of other fisherman. Have fun and cya there! IMAO(I missed another one!)


March 28, 2003 - Shawnee County Lake - I have fished Shawnee County Lake for trout for the last 2 weeks. On the 22nd of March 2003 it was real slow. I only got 2 bites and i think that was 2 more than anyone else! The week before though it was real good. Everyone was using power bait on the bottom and most people caught a few. I caught my limit! They stocked the lake 3-4 weeks ago so I'm not sure how fished out it is. i'm sure their are quite a few more in there though. When the weather is great with no wind, just stay home@! They won't bite well. A little wind and they are hot! From: IMAO(I missed another one!)

March 26, 2003 - La Cygne - La cygne last thurs caught 4 largemouth on chart spinnerbait. Couldn't buy a white. Anyone doing any good at hillsdale on the walleye? Kw

March 25, 2003 - Kanopolis and Marion - This Weekend I went to Kannoplis and caught some nice Channel Cats using Shade Sides, At Marion The Walleye are starting to bite. Caught some small Walleye and Small White Twisters. On The Main lake There are picking up some Walleye in the dark. Monday Moring I went to the Cottonwood River about 2 miles south of Durham, and Caught some really nice White Bass and One Small Walleye, using a White Twister Tails. If anyone needs a report from Marion.



March 24, 2003 - Wilson Lake - Jack Hoskinson Madd Jack Striper Guide - Well we finally got some much needed rain which raised Wilson about 3 inches. With the new water coming in it has scattered the stripers from where I was catching them last week but it has moved the bigger fish up the lake. Saturday I found stripers from Minooka point to the river but had a hard time finding any active fish. I did manage to catch 3 up to about 5#. I have gotten reports from the bank fisherman catching good numbers on the West end and a few in Hell Creek. The white bass are also moving towards the river with a few nice ones being caught trolling. I heard a report of a 5 walleye stringer which weighed over 21# taken on the dam trolling. With the water temp.on the rise the action will just keep getting better, spring is here and it's time to catch some biggun's. Good Luck

March 23, 2003 - Big Hill - Fished big hill this past weekend. The previous days of rain muddied the water and the temps were cold. The clear area of the lake was cold running in the 46 degree temp and the muddied water ran up to 53. Shad were seen jumping, but bass just weren't active yet. I caught one bass Saturday that was 14.75 inches on a red rippled worm. Sunday my second bass was caught on a red berkley power worm in about five to seven feet of water. The bass measured 16.5 inches. The weekend was very nice, but the water just wasn't calling bass out of their hide outs. Also the ABA tournament was held there and the winner fished spinnerbaits in the muddiest water. Dominic

March 21, 2003 - Cheney - Went to Cheney on the 14th and couldn't even get a bite. I was only trying to catch a few white Perch. I fished all the Rocks and Jetties from the
Marina clear to Yoder Point from the back using everything from worms to jigs to small crankbaits. I even waded out fished back into the shore. Hopefully the warmer temps and the recent rain will warm the water temp up and get things moving. Ryan Schiffelbein

March 18, 2003 - El Dorado - Fished El Dorado early morning on the15th and 16th and fished all evening on the 16th and caught nothing. We used jigs, assasins, wally divers and leeches. I did see one small fish caught from shore. I also talked to many other boaters with the same report. Nothing!!!!! Water temp 38 degrees. I guess about another week untill we start seeing some fish. SNAG

March 17, 2003 - Cheney - I fished Cheney the mornings of the 15th and 16th. On the 15th I stayed on the upper end of the lake. I marked several groups of fish but couldn't get them to bite. I saw several other boats but didn't see any fish being brought in. On the 16th I fished the lower end, M&M, Wichita point and the dam. The wind was really blowing but I couldn't get a bite. I tried jigging, trolling and drifting. MAC

March 17, 2003 - Cheney - Just wondering if any body has been on Cheney lake yet this year? If so did you do any good. Been thinking about going out soon. Good luck to all this year. Jack H. - Reply and we will forward to him and post answer

March 17, 2003 - El Dorado - Anglers doing well on walleye at night fishing bobbers with leeches. Wally divers during the day.

March 16, 2003 - Marion - The fishing at broken bridge has been really good. Friday I went out and caught about 30 whites on small minnows and Red and White Tub jigs. Saturday went out and caught some really nice channel cats and some small whites, and this morning went out and caught one really nice crappie about 12 inches long. (I say some really nice channel cats caught on Stink bait). On the Marion resivour they are catching some small Walleye 7 to 9pm. As the water warms up the big wipers and whites should be bitting on the north end of the lake in really shallow water.
Todd Becker

March 14, 2003 - Lincoln Street Bridge Wichita - Anglers are catching channel and carp on worms. One caught seven channel.

March 14, 2003 - Geary State Lake -Today, me and a friend went out to Geary State lake to see if we could get any bass to hit on jerkbaits. We found a shallow bank that was only 5-7 feet deep, and was along a tree line. We ended up with 13 largemouths in about two hours of fishing. Fished just about the whole lake and didn't bump a fish except the bank across from the boat ramp. Had to fish slow, and the bite was extremely light. Good luck to all, and also, any one who goes out there, BE CAREFUL, the lake is extremly low, stumps, and logs everywhere. R.J.

March 13, 2003 - Wilson Lake - Jack Hoskinson Madd Jack Striper Guide - TheThe ice is mostly off with a few of the southern coves still holding some broken ice but the boat ramps are open and ready to fish. The last 3 days Hell Creek has been producing stripers, whites, and white perch with lots of large shad being snagged while fishing. Evenings have been best with wader fisherpeople and boats both catching fish! Hell Creek is a ''NO WAKE'' area so let be respectful of the bank fisherman and give them room to fish without spooking there fish. Years ago I was wader fishing and a boat came in on me with such a large wake I had to run towards the bank to keep the water out of my waders. Not to mention the boat spooked the fish so neither of us caught anymore. So please be respectful of others!! GOOD LUCK

March 13, 2003 - Cheney to fish for White Perch - To Ryan Schiffelbein: Try worms or small jigs off the rock jetties

March 12, 2003 - Cheney - I was thinking of going out to try to put my share of the dent into the White Perch population out at Cheney this weekend. It is a little to early to try for the Walleye and I have spring fishing fever. I have never intentionally gone after these critters and hear that they are fairly good eating. To get to the point, I was wondering if anyone could share some information on where the best spots to catch these guys off the bank would be and what type of lure/bait works best. Ryan Schiffelbein

March 12, 2003 - Wyandotte County Lake - Caught my limit on trout this morning between 9:30 and 11 am at Wyandotte County Lake. Chartreuse and pink powerbait. Saw other anglers doing well also.

March 9, 2003 - Answer for angler on LaCygne - No special regs. Boat ramp, no H.P restrictions , Lake is very low . watch for stumps . Where else can you catch a 10 lb bass on topwater in Feb

Feb. 26, 2003 - Cheney Ice Fishing - Hello fellow anglers! I'm a 20 year old junior at Wichita State who's been itching to do some icefishing at cheney or somewhere nearby for a while. Unfortunately, I've never had anybody to help teach me the tricks of the trade or give me some good advice in this area. I was kinda hoping that this recent cold snap would be long enough to provide for some safe ice out at Cheney so i could catch some whites, wipers, or whatever else would be willing to take a slab spoon. Quite frankly, i'm actually a little hesitant to wander out onto the ice without some knowledgable advice. If there's anybody out there that would be willing to help me out with some advice, just shoot me an email. If the conditions are right, i'd kinda like to go either friday the 27th, or saturday. Thanks for the help! Andrew K

Feb. 22, 2003 - Wilson Lake Ice Fishing - Jack Hoskinson Madd Jack Striper Guide - The stripers have been hitting decent all week with lots of stripers in the 4# to 7# range being caught. We fished Saturday morning it was very cold and windy. The fish were hitting short most of the time but caught enough to keep your blood flowing. Notice the 17# Kansas Salmon on the right, nice fish wrong species! Hell Creek and the River have been the best. Thursday at noon I watched 2 guys catch at least 10 stripers in 30 minutes, they were really in them! The cold and snow will certainly put a dampener on it for awhile but spring is just around the corner!!! Fish-ON 

Feb. 19, 2003 - Wilson Lake Ice Fishing - Jack Hoskinson Madd Jack Striper Guide - The ice is finally all gone and the fishing is starting to fire up. White bass, White perch and Stripers are all starting to feed in the backs of cove where there has been a little surface temperature warming. The warmest I have found has been almost 39 degrees but with the next few days of sunshine and 50 degree day time highs the bite should really start to pick up. Wader fisherman are also picking up a few wading wind blown points throwing white and chartreuse bucktails. Hell Creek has been the best but I fished the river yesterday and caught 1/2 dozen stripers up to 9#. I haven't heard of any walleye yet but the windblown points near the dam should be holding some big sows early and late in the day. Good Luck Madd Jack

Feb. 15, 2003 - Kingman County State Lake - Boy was it cold today at Kingman Lake, Sat. 2/15/03. the wind was blowing 25 to 35 mph, and the wind chill was 12. My line was iceing up so bad , every 2 casts I had to knock the ice out of the eye's, but the Bass and Northern's were biting hard. I was using jig and pig. When I set the hook the ice flew in all directions and the fight was on. My first cast caught a big Bass. The next 2 Bass were under 18" and I released them. Missed 1 good size Bass. In 2 hours I had my limit and was ready to get warm, I think my hands were frost bit about 7 times.Robin

Feb. 15, 2003 - Marion Reservoir - Fishing at Broken Bridge is picking up. The wipers and White Bass has been bighting in the afternoon and evening. Went out Wednesday caught about 30 wipers and White Bass. ( They were really small) 5 Crappie 1 Walleye, and one Largemouth Bass. I was using a Orange and Silver Castmaster 1/16 in size and also was using a silver Castmaster in 1/16th in size. As the water warms up the fishing should get really good.

Feb. 15, 2003 - Ice fishing for catfish - Editor's note - This is from a former Kansan now living in Illinois. He thought it might be of interest to Kansans in similar situations. -I went to a farm pond recently, intending to fish for bluegill. Usual setup, tiny teardrop jigs, waxworms, 2 lb line.. Ended up with a dozen channel cat 2-4 lbs, a half-dozen torn lines, and about 30 bluegill. Catfish through the ice was a new phenomenon to me. They were all in 4-6 ft. in what was left of old weedbeds. I'd be interested if anyone pursues catfish through the ice with more conventional catfish baits. It was hard for me to believe how aggressive they were on these itty-bitty baits. Kept 3, they tasted great out of that cold water. Tim S.

Feb. 11, 2003 - Reply to Ron Kinkor's message dated Feb. 9.
Try http://www.kdwp.state.ks.us/cgi-bin/fishing/Fishing_Reports/view_reports.cgi?region=4

I try to keep the Cheney report up to date. If you want lake temp, elevation, releases, etc. go to http://www.swt-wc.usace.army.mil/chen.lakepage.html Gordon Schneider

Feb. 9, 2003 - Question from angler on LaCygne -
Hello, my name is R.J., and I've been a big fan of the web-site for a while now. While doing one of my usual check-ups on here I noticed a message sent concerning Lycyne powerplant lake. I was just wanting a little more info. about it. Can you take a boat, or if there were any special regulations? Ihave heard of other power plant type lakes, and you could only fish for a certain period of time, couldn't use live bait, etc. So if there is anyone out there who could fill me in, I would greatly appreciate it. GOOD LUCK TO ALL!! Reply here and we will forward to R.J.

Feb. 9, 2003 - LaCygne - Winter fishing at La'cyne Power plant has been good to excellent this winter. There should be more good fishing while the cold weather persists at the hot water discharge.
Hybrids/Wipers were spawning or in prespawn the last week of January and everyone there was catching them. Size was averaging from 3lbs to 13lbs. They had egg sacks and their bellies were full of small bluegill. I caught over 50 in two days and most were 6 to 8 lbs. Best success was with a 1 to 1 1/2 oz. jig using a large plastic shad body. I ran out of shad bodies and resorted to trailing 1 oz jigs with 8 inch shartruse worms and slaughtered them. Large Mouth Bass were plentiful with several big ones... My largest was 24 inches and I saw on 9lb'er pulled. Most Large Mouth were caught near the bottom with slow presentations. I caught several on small bluegill while fishing for catfish. I prefer lighter lures but the current requires a heaver. There was a party of fishermen drifting the hotwater discharge several hundred yards into the lake vertically jiging perch and catching BIG Blue Cats. They would pull to the outlet and slowly drift out into the lake. Buffalo and Carp were abundunt. It was hard to fish and not snag a few each trip.
Lots of white bass and a few crappie. Channel Cat are plentiful on worms, minnows, shad sides but most were in the 12 to 15 inch range. If you want to catch fish, this is the place to go. Artifical lures work well and live bait worked even better. Note: The colder it is, the better the fishing. More energy produced during a cold snap brings the water tempratures up a few degrees and the fish turn on. I've fished there maybe 10+ times this fall and winter and always caught fish. Good luck. mcg, louisburg, ks.

Feb. 9, 2003 - About Cheney - About the new regulations for walleye on Cheney. Not a problem most 'eyes i caught last year were right around 21 or better. May i suggest using barbless hooks as well, so survivability of fish released will improve.
Is there one place a person can call to find out which lakes are open to boat launching and which are still iced in? I would appreciate any assistance in this matter. thanks ron kinkor

Feb. 6, 2003 - About Cheney -
I read Mikes notes on the new regulations for Cheney and I couldn't agree more. Why don't more people practice more catch and release? I for one would rather catch a bunch of fish and release them than work all day to catch one fish and take it home. On another note I wonder why the crappie never get any help with stocking when populations are down. Ken Dexter Haven, Ks

Feb. 3, 2003 - Kingman - I caught these at Kingman Lake on a Bitsy Bug, Bass Jig and Uncle Josh Pork Frog. The trip in January was cold and my line was iceing up pretty bad, but yesterday the temp. was 72 and a cold front was moving in. The big Northern was 9 lbs. and the Bass were around 3 lbs. Robin T.


Jan. 31, 2003 - Winter Fishing Report - Sometimes it's tough this time of year to find fishable water. Many of our lakes will have ice that is too thin and unsafe for ice fishing. Some will have open water in the middle of the lake but the ramps are iced in. If you are lucky, you can either launch a boat to fish open water or find ice that is solid enough to fish safely. A person has to be extra careful because of the cold temperatures this time of year, protecting yourself from the elements is essential. Make sure to dress in warm enough clothing so you can enjoy fishing without being uncomfortable. Dress in layers, it's easy to shed a layer or two later in the day when the temperature warms up and you can add layers back as needed.

These fish were caught on jigs with a S-L-O-W vertical presentation in 22' of water in brush piles near the creek channel. Look for brush or structure on your lake in the 15' to 25' range, with deeper water nearby. Also look for the presence of baitfish in the same area and you should be in business. If you don't find active fish, move on and keep looking. Change your bait size, color, and presentation until you find what combination the fish are looking for and stick to it as long as it works. If the fish seem to quit feeding stay put, change colors and give them a try before moving on.

"I'll see you at the lake!" <mailto:mike@crappiemagic.com>


Jan. 29, 2003 - Wilson Lake Ice Fishing - Jack Hoskinson Madd Jack Striper Guide - Ice Fishing Last weekend was excellent with hundreds of stripers caught. I would estimate that at times there were 150 people on the ice if not more. Many stripers in the 4 to 15 lb. range were caught and the largest I heard of was a 25 lb. HOG. I witnessed one fellow who had his limit on the ice catch a bigger fish only to keep it and place the smaller striper back down the hole, trying to convince me that he would survive. Once those fish are on the ice they are your limit and any striper caught from then on must be release without removing it from the water. This is Kansas law. I heard of and saw several people taking over there limit and didn't seem to care. Wildlife and Parks did show up but the guilty parties had hit the road. Stripers are here on a put and take basis and with the ever growing white perch problem we need as many stripers as possible to keep this perch under control, by all means catch your limit stripers are great to eat but please consider the fishing in the future for yourself, kids and grandkids, MaddJack

Jan. 25, 2003 - Cheney Reservoir - We caught 40 white bass through the ice Saturday using little Cleos, in the extreme upper end west side. Go in on Sun City Road, one mile south of Parallel Road. Water depth is only five feet and extremely clear.



Jan. 21, 2003 - Wilson Lake Ice Fishing - Jack Hoskinson Madd Jack Striper Guide - The last 2 days on the ice has produced a few nice stripers. The 19th one 17lb. and a 15lb. were caught in the Gravel Hill area. With good numbers on stripers in the 6 to 8 lb. category. White bass and white perch are also being caught. The ice never has gotten as thick as I like it and with the last 2 days of warmer weather it has thawed around the edges and is getting a little spooky. But with the cold weather coming in the next few days I would predict that this weekend the ice in the gravel Hill area will be a good 4 inches or more. The bait of choice has been 1/4 oz white and chartuese bucktails. With new ice always be careful if you go, fish with a friend and remember no fish is worth that cold life threatening swim. Good Luck

Jan. 10, 2003 - Vic's Lake Wichita - Friday evening just before dark I got two 10 to 12 inch trout and missed a third. They all hit worms and my minnow went untouched. I was told it has been slow the last few days but not long ago I was told that three people got their limit in no time. Thats fishing, sometimes its better than others. Chris

Jan. 10, 2003 - Plainville Township Lake - On January 9th, a buddy of mine and myself, caught a dozen nice sized crappie from PLAINVILLE TOWNSHIP LAKE. They were hitting jigs just six inches under our bobbers. Have heard of a few nice wipers being caught also.I moved back to PLAINVILLE from McPHERSON, i enjoy reading about the local reports for that area, hope to hear some from the HAYS ,PLAINVILLE area. Good luck on the water this year. DON WESSEL

Jan. 9, 2003 - Kansas City Sports Show - I don't know if anybody still reads this in the middle of winter, but I've got a tip that should get some of you three way rig pullers excited. At the Kansas City Sports Show there is a booth selling Risto Raps 2 for 5dollars. The company is Rodney's out of Alton IL. I know it's quite a trip for you Wichita guys but I also know from looking at this site all summer long how effective the three way rig is on Cheney. The booth that sells plastic by the pound has a real good selection of shad bodies also. There is something for EVERYONE at the show too, so the drive may be worthwhile. As a side note isn't the winter crappie fishing any good down that way? We've been killing them for a month at Hillsdale and Clinton. Look forward to hearing from all of you in the coming months. Jason

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