Mattoon Lake (Kittitas County) Fishing Report

Lots of action at Mattoon. No quality fish, but there are lots of them, and they are hungry! I landed 20 fish in approximately 2 hours of fishing. 17 bluegill averaging around 4 to 5 inches each, 2 largemouth bass averaging about 8 inches, and one rainbow trout, which is pictured, probably only about 8 or 9 inches as well. The fish in this lake are hungry for nightcrawlers! All fish were caught using a white jig and a splitshot while anchored about 100 yards from the boatlaunch. They liked slow to medium speed retrieval, but hookset percentage was much higher with a quicker retrieve, and these small fish are nightcrawler thieves! The vegitation is just starting to come in, so there will probably only be about another 2 or 3 weeks of decent fishing without having to use a float or floating bait to keep from getting milfoil or grass all over your rigs. Would be a great place for inexperienced or younger anglers, especially if you have a small, non-motorized boat.

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The Quadfather
4/20/2017 6:40 AM
I've always wondered about that lake, as I pull around I-90. Sounds like it has a lot to offer. Thanks for the report!
4/20/2017 12:21 PM
Nice rainbow! Sounds like a fantastic day to me. Do you like using those jigs for trout? I have never even tried fishing a jig for trout but always thought it could be a successful tactic.
4/20/2017 2:11 PM
The only way I would recommend jigging for trout would be with a very light jighead or a floating trailer. There were quite a few trout jumping in the lake, but I only hooked 1. You need something shallow because they sit in the middle to upper water column, and because of where their eyes are located, can only see baits or lures in front or above them. I got lucky with my trout catch because of how shallow this lake is (average of 4 to 6 feet I would guess)
4/20/2017 7:04 PM
A 1/16 oz woolybugger jig in black, brown, or olive is killer on suspended trout. Use electronics to mark fish and cast far enough to offset for drift blowback. Twitch softly and you'll get some vicious strikes.
4/20/2017 8:57 PM
Awesome I will give that a try. I have a few #4 and #6 cone head olive wooly buggers that I can actually cast out with my ultra lite spinning rod. Maybe that would be worth a shot if I can mark some
4/21/2017 10:41 AM
Caught about 40 of those stockers Tuesday on Roostertails. The spiny ray weren't cooperating, but those little slime rockets sure were!
4/21/2017 12:00 PM
I saw a ton of the stocker trout jumping and feeding on the surface, especially when it started raining, glad you had a successful day on the water! We're you trying to catch pan fish on the rooster tail as well, or were you not having any luck with a different rig? I noticed they liked very slow presentations. When I would retrieve my jig setup faster, I got a higher percentage of Hooksett, but would take 5 or so casts to get a bite, where if I slowed it down, I would get a nibble on every cast.