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Iowa River Eyes

By Timothy L. Anderson

Fishing for Walleye on the Iowa River can be an adventure. The prime fishing on the Iowa River is between Alden and Marshalltown. In the spring start just after ice out. These techniques not only will produce nice 2 to 4 lb. Walleyes but also some nice Northern Pike.

Begin by identifying locations where there is structure that will keep the Walleye around. Look for rock ripples, deep holes (they don’t have to be very deep sometimes only a drop off of a foot or two will do), creek mouths and isolated rock piles. Fish these with jig and minnow no plastic body is usually necessary early in the spring. As the river begins to warm usually two to four weeks after ice out the Walleye fishing will continue to get better. As the river Eyes begin to feed up for the spawn you can use top water baits and crawdad lures as well as jigs with twister tail bodies (white seems to be best early on and changing to green as the weeks pass). Don’t be afraid to experiment with the colors you may find one that is particularly great on the stretch of river you are on. As they go into the spawn the bite will drop significantly and remain so until the spawn is over.

After the spawn the Eyes will begin to feed again very aggressively. During this time you can use just about anything to get them. After they have built up their bodies from the spawn with this post spawn feeding frenzy the bite will begin to taper off to a more regular pattern. At this time the best technique to use is fish a lot of areas, I prefer canoeing stretches of river and fishing every where that looks good using jigs and crawdad lures. When you get one fish that area extensively as where there is one there are usually more. They do tend to be finicky this time of year thru October so throw until your arm is tired. The bonus is that you can catch nice Small Mouth Bass this time of year. I have caught several that would push 5 lb.

Fall fishing. October to where the ice covers the river to where you can’t get a line in. Again find the same structure as spring fishing. This time of year I have found that using a Carolina rigged straight hook 6 to 8 inches below a bullet sinker with 3 to 4 inch shiners works great you may find you have to use a stinger hook as the Eyes seem to hit short. Find rock piles and flat line fish these. Remember that when an Eye bites you should give them a little slack to let them enjoy the bait a while. This time of year you will find that the Eyes will come in and feed and you will catch 2 or 3 fish and then they will be gone. Don’t worry they will come back. It seems that they feed in cycles on the same structure.

I hope these tips and techniques will help.


Also find information about walleye, sauger or saugeye fishing in these states.

AL Walleye Fishing AR Walleye Fishing AZ Walleye Fishing CO Walleye Fishing CT Walleye Fishing DE Walleye Fishing GA Walleye Fishing IA Walleye Fishing ID Walleye Fishing IL Walleye Fishing IN Walleye Fishing
KS Walleye Fishing KY Walleye Fishing MA Walleye Fishing MD Walleye Fishing MI Walleye Fishing MN Walleye Fishing MO Walleye Fishing MS Walleye Fishing MT Walleye Fishing NC Walleye Fishing ND Walleye Fishing
NE Walleye Fishing NH Walleye Fishing NJ Walleye Fishing NM Walleye Fishing NV Walleye Fishing NY Walleye Fishing OH Walleye Fishing OK Walleye Fishing OR Walleye Fishing PA Walleye Fishing SC Walleye Fishing
SD Walleye Fishing TN Walleye Fishing TX Walleye Fishing UT Walleye Fishing VA Walleye Fishing VT Walleye Fishing WA Walleye Fishing WI Walleye Fishing WV Walleye Fishing WY Walleye Fishing