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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It had been about three weeks since I last got out fishing for eyes. Recent reports and pictures have been a reminder that prime time fishing was passing me by. With the cold stretch of weather, I was eyeing Sunday as the night to get out. Air temps in the 40's made for a pleasant night with no hassles of frozen guides. My friend, "Dirt" came along as he knew the possibilities.

Here is Dirt with one from three weeks ago. Yes the stringer was there as I asked him to keep one for me. First Eye kept all year in Illinois, my wife asked for one and I do like to eat fresh fish. The rest of the pictures are in the dark so I thought I would add one from an overcast day.



Although October was consistent with a few walleyes each time out, late November has always been better. Night fishing in the fall means minnow style crankbaits, long and skinny ones. We use Xraps, Rebel minnow, floating rapalas, and others depending on wind, current, depth, and other factors. Hard bottom gravel areas adjacent to current are what we target but normally there is one other factor needed to hold fish. It could be where the current bends, a hole that is a foot or two deeper than surrounding area, a wash out area or even weeds.

Started at 5:30 pm. The first spot was a small hole about 4 feet deep maybe a 1 1/2 deeper than the surrounding area. First two casts produced fish for me.

Here was the first.



After pulling three out of the hole and getting no more hits, we let this small area recover for later and heading for the next spot.





This is a spot that has current close to shore and a bend in the river creating a nice eddy.

We caught 5 or 6 smaller ones mixed in and around 8Pm we decided to try the hole one more time.

I missed one that felt big as I was more concerned about my position in relation to the hole and spaced out as my pole bent over. Thankfully, I got a second chance.



Several hard runs and a lot of head shakes made for a nice battle.

There are many places in Northern Illinois that must hold monster walleyes; Desplaines, Fox, Rock, K3, Pecatonica, and the tribs of these rivers are all good places to search. It hard to find cold season night spots but once you do the fishing is very easy and very enjoyable.

Q
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks for the welcome. I have seen a lot of activity here in regards to walleye reports so I figured this was the place to be. The reports on the fox and Desplaines have been great, I normally only see a few reports of fall night fishing each year. Legend and others have very impressive reports with great consistency on the Fox and the reports from the crew down by Desplaines shows the pontential of that river.

My information is basically the same as in those reports. One question that always gets asked is when do the walleyes stop hitting lures and you need to go live bait. For me, when wading at night, Minnow baits/Stick baits are by far a better presentation all winter until ice. The benefits include less hang ups, covering more water, no digging into the bucket and getting your hands wet, and minnow type baits have a bigger profile than live bait. Most of the prey fish during this period are bigger, the silhouette the lure makes is bigger and easier for the fish see and I believe walleyes will move more for a bigger meal. There have been times after getting skunked I wish I brought live minnows but I doubt they would have helped.

Hi Andrew, yes I don't have much to post in the summers. I still get out on rivers and lakes mostly canoeing and camping but I have two little ones that do all the fishing. I should post those outings too but I'm much more tired after them. I'll try to post an old Apple River trip for people with kids as its a great place to take the family for a overnight campout. I get this time of year and early spring so it all works out well. I see you have found the Desplaines walleye. From the reports it looks like the walleye in your creek moved downstream and are now over the dam. Actually, you know if the creek has walleyes, north of the dam also has walleyes. You should lead the search for the "Gold" next year. The spot your fishing can get crowded. I should be out there sometime in December, just waiting for a call.

Thanks again for the welcome.

Kevin
 
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