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Joe R

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  1. Rather odd rivers that I fish mainly like Kish and Des plaines, and tribs, can go to summer time levels in winter. They can get very low which in skinnier parts can be a challenge to fish in harshest winters. Looking at long term graphs for V this doesn't seem to be the case. Just odd. Like you said looking at this more you have to be careful with refercing median for V it's such a seasonal river certainly not the norm for northern Illinois rivers. It's not like there are gates holding water back like on the fox where they may drain down the chain of lakes seasonally.
  2. Manny do you know why the vermilion varies so much? All local rivers vary seasonally do but why vermilion more so? Usually you can associate gradient to faster draining rivers. Last two fall trips passing through to and from Iowa i waded leonore gauge at 3.8ft other time was 4.4ft both were manageable. Another time when I was passing through it was close to 6ft and I didn't bother to stop for that.
  3. Common sense always prevails but who steps into a danger river to wade. You assess the situation when you get there. Wading is relative and wading may just be creating casting distance and not getting into water very deep. Main point is if you have no intelligence on a river and you were considering a general rule of thumb can be look at median gauge. For the vermillion I've only been a few times and I actually write down on paper gauge heights when I fished.
  4. Best advice is what Bart says ...in general if you don't know the water well just reference the median or the mean level of historical river levels/flow for that particular day. Once you get above the mean and nearing the 75% percentile chances are water will be stirred up and stained and not worth fishing anyways https://nwis.waterdata.usgs.gov/il/nwis/current/?type=flow&group_key=basin_cd
  5. Does anyone know the true laws with respect to Illinois laws and non navigable waterways? Most small rivers and streams are considered non navigable in private lands and my understanding is private land owners own the river bottom and banks so in theory you are trespassing. Questions.. Is it considered trespassing if you are in a kayak floating through private land areas? What about bridge areas does anyone know if there is some leeway laws where space around bridge is never considered private land? For example if you stay within like 20 feet of bridge for example.
  6. Wow long outing on a tough weather day! Sorry I didn't make it for the early outing I didnt free up in time but I did float the Kish one way from 3 to dusk that day on one of the branches in private water areas. Very surprised have to say it was probably my best day smallie fishing in Illinois not from a total fish count but from an average size perspective I'm assuming breeders on the feedbag moving up river. Caught a lot of fish couldn't care to count but I don't think any were under 13". Any area i thought would come contain smallies yielded 2 or 3. Unusual to have such predictable fishing I don't think any fish passed up the opportunity and they made multiple efforts.
  7. Last minute decision for me depends if my kid comes in town from college college Friday
  8. I fish year round if I can find open water. Waders/shore fishing/kayaking.. - wear neopene waders even when kayaking, i'm too cheap to buy a drysuit but I wear a super flexy wetsuit coat over or tucked into the waders (front zip so easy to take on and off), carry multiple pairs of water proof gloves on outings. Gloves should range from lighter neoprene to waterproof ski gloves when its cold and windy. Pack a small or medium size dry bag for extra emergency items (shell coat, shirt, hat, vest, whatever makes sense for case you swim or just want to dress up or dress down). Winter weather fishing requires you to prep more and carry more...on foot it always means a backpack comes along, with yak one or two waterproof bags for extras. If in yak and your getting real cold get out and get moving on the shore for awhile that or paddle hard for awhile.
  9. Wow. Rare good news in Illinois it's great in the dismal financial state that they have funds to do so. At some point it would be good to see the boundaries on a map
  10. Thanks John! So i see first left there is a big parking lot a short ways down the road i can look for trails there. So safe to assume if I dont take first left and keep going straight there are lots closer to the river but there may not be trails down to river due to bluffs?
  11. Visiting my two college kids in Iowa this weekend and will take a long yak and waders. Was thinking about driving out on the I80 corridor and if weather and gauges cooperate get some fishing in Friday and Sunday coming and going. Was looking for like 3 hour outings... Vermillion: I see an area or two where I could launch a yak to snoop around. Was wondering if the lower Mattheissen parking area (off of park road) is possible to hike down to the river and wade? Green River: Down closer to the Rock confluence the river looks less channelized and had some nice turns ..worth fishing yak in lower section? fish species prospects? Thanks for any responses... Last time out I fished Sugar river and that is a possibility also...
  12. Fishing was slow on the South Branch, in comparison last time I floated that section several weeks back I had a 40 fish day. Water was lower than expected (Ben you turned around right before the river got more interesting, Ken it was great to meet you and you were able to make it to start of what I'd refer to as a more productive section). I stayed out little to long, went too far, and although I carried a 64ounce water bladder in the backpack I sucked it empty and the couple mile slog back upriver rather sucked (partly since I had 32 ounces of sweat sloshing in the waders LMAO). I missed a couple fish on the fly rod so after a few hours I switched to the 2pc spinning rod I had strapped to my backpack. I started picking up smallies rotating through different plastics and spinner baits later in the day but nothing on topwaters or crankbaits (well actually a couple pike on buzzbaits). Probably ended up w/20 smallies (all 14" or less) and a couple pike but I'd consider that slow for an all day outing. When several go to spots aren't producing any bites you know you are on a slow day...
  13. Late night for me but when home i will try and load up car quickly at 1am and try and get to the diner at set time. Hopefully the biological clock will be working.. Joe
  14. I look a gauges for a bunch of locations and rivers and I don't keep track but seems like the same warnings pop up every year...
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