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Why Ohio is Known for Fishing

Home to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Cleveland Browns, Amish Country, and more fishing spots water than you can imagine.

The first lake that comes to mind when thinking of fishing in Ohio is Lake Erie, it's no doubt the most popular of the lakes in Ohio for anglers of all experience levels. The primary tourism season is from the middle of May to the end of September, but this Great Lake has the room, and the fish production is only increasing as the walleye population is on the rise!
  • Best Fishing Spots in Ohio

    Port Clinton Fishing

    • The small local community in this area is filled with classic northeast charm and architecture. Visit the magnificent Port Clinton Lighthouse, walk the beautiful shores of the "Walleye Capital of the World," and you will see Ohio Fishing Charter boats fill the marinas and bays primed to take anglers out on a fishing trip to remember for ages.
    • When you step aboard a Lake Erie Fishing Charter at Port Clinton, Ohio, be prepared for some serious Lake Erie Walleye fishing. During April, many fishing guides will have their guest jig fish and catch near 100 walleye in just a few hours.

    Lake Erie Fishing

    • If you cant depart on a charter fishing boat from Port Clinton, don't worry. As a member of the Great Lakes, you have plenty of places to leave from with high success rates, and fishing stories even bigger.
    • The Ohio State Fish is the Walleye, and Lake Erie is a big reason why. Although commercial fishing as stoped on this lake, you can select from several Lake Erie, Ohio fishing trips that depart from the banks of this body of water every day.

    Sandusky Bay Fishing

    • This one made our top fishing destinations in Ohio list because it tends to get overlooked with its bigger and more famous brothers and sisters. However, Channel Catfish and Largemouth Bass will keep your rods bent, especially during June. Cast a Texas-rig into the shallows in Cold Creek.
    • June isn't the only month where your arms might get tired, fishing in this bay is year-round. This body of water is shallow, between 10 and 2 feet. The only exception is for when some areas are dredged to provide for commercial access.

    Toledo Fishing

    • The Maumee River runs right through the city of Toledo, Ohio providing a convenient getaway for any angler in the area seeking one of the many fish species it offers. This river offers excellent trout fishing year-round, but during the summer months, you will need to have a gameplan.
    • Try yellow perch fishing or fishing for smallmouth bass with one of your smaller spinners, in areas of current. If you fish after significant rain, it can churn the water and help the fish become more active with the higher levels of oxygen.

    Bass Islands Fishing

    • Can't decide if you want to party of fish? Head to the Bass Islands with a fly rod and your choice of beverage. For those that don't mind a lively area, with tourists and party-goers, the North Islands are your spot, and honestly a hidden gem for experiencing fly fishing in Ohio.
    • If you want a more secluded fly fishing trip, then you will want to cast a line on the middle islands, pssst f you can get to know a local... there are some superb private fishing areas, then just toss your best set up a little ways past the rocks, and the bass will hit.

    Other Fishing Lakes and Rivers

    • Ohio River, Mad River, Alum Creek, Clear Fork Reservoir, Piedmont Lake, and Indian Lake
  • Fishing Licenses and Regulations

    If you know your child, under the age of 16, will be a lifelong avid angler, go ahead and give him a gift for a lifetime. Purchase a Resident Youth Lifetime License for $430.56.

    For residents 16 years and older:

    • 1 Year License Costs $25
    • 1 Day License Costs $14
    • 1 Day Lake Erie Charter Fishing License Costs $14

    For all non-residents:

    • 1 Year License Costs $50.96
    • 1 Days License Costs $14
    • 1 Day Lake Erie Charter Fishing License Costs $14

    Nonresident Lake Erie Sportfishing Permit is required for all non-residents fishing Lake Erie from January 1 to the last day of April.

    There are many other things to consider when looking at fishing in Ohio, so you are responsible for doing your due diligence by reviewing more information from the ODNR Division of Wildlife.

Fishing Calendar: Fishing Seasons of Ohio


Where: Fremont Reservoir

Species: Yellow Perch


Where: Ohio River

Species: Striped Bass


Where: Amick Reservoir

Species: Lake Trout


Where: Port Clinton

Species: Walleye


Where: Vermillion River

Species: Steelhead Trout


Where: Lake La Su An

Species: Sunfish


Where: Lake Erie

Species: Walleye


Where: Muskingum River

Species: Catfish


Where: Olentangy River

Species: Smallmouth Bass


Where: Madison Lake

Species: Crappie


Where: St. Joseph Lake

Species: Largemouth Bass


Where: Mad River

Species: Brown Trout


What is the biggest fish in Ohio?

Here are the top five fishing records for Ohio: Largemouth Bass, 13.13 lbs - Farm Pond, Brown Trout, 14.67 lbs. - Lake Erie, Buffalo Sucker, 40.8 lbs. - Lake Erie, Steelhead Trout, 21.3 lbs. - Lake Erie, Common Carp, 53.65 lbs. - Lake Erie.

Where can I fly fish in Ohio?

What are Ohio's top fishing Lakes?

Where can I catch big catfish in Ohio?

Where is the best bass fishing in Ohio?

What is the biggest fish in Ohio?