Fisherman Vic Basil nets a rainbow trout he caught from Rock Creek, March 20, 2022, the second day of Illinois’ spring trout catch-and-release period. (Evan Garcia / WTTW News)

Rain Friday and Saturday created less-than-ideal fishing conditions for catching rainbow trout at Rock Creek ahead of a statewide, two-week catch-and-release period for a select few bodies of water that began Saturday.

Florin Deleanu powerline fishes at Montrose Harbor in Chicago on March 12, 2021. (WTTW News)

This time of year at Montrose Harbor, you’ll see people lining the lakefront with fire extinguishers — but they’re not putting out flames, they’re fishing. Powerlining is a unique fishing style with local roots.

Fishermen Wayne Hankins (right) and Stephen Williams (left) fish off a bridge in Jackson Park on Chicago’s South Side on May 23. (Evan Garcia / WTTW News)

Chicago fishermen are adjusting to COVID-19 regulations keeping them off Chicago's lakefront, a popular fishing spot.

Canoers on the Mississippi River near Alton (

From hiking to kayaking and fishing to stargazing, here are 10 activities to try this summer in the good ol’ Land of Lincoln. 


Nearly 450 fishermen flocked to the 10th annual LVVA Ice Fishing Derby on Bangs Lake in north suburban Wauconda earlier this month. And we were there to catch the action.

From Oct. 1 through Dec. 31, fishermen in Illinois are allowed to use a specific technique to catch salmon that’s banned in several other states. What snagging is, and where you’re allowed to do it.

Silver carp jumping into a boat. (Evan Garcia / Chicago Tonight)

Each year, self-proclaimed “rednecks” try to rid the Illinois River of Asian carp – one flying fish at a time. We visit the small town of Bath for a look.

Stacey Greene is the owner of Park Bait Shop at Montrose Harbor. (Jay Shefsky / Chicago Tonight)

Once upon a time in Chicago, so many people fished to feed their families that there were bait shops up and down the lakefront. The oldest one has been owned by the same family for 60 years.

Cook County Fisheries biologists Jim Phillips and Steve Silic in the walleye hatchery.

Though not a terribly romantic process, walleye breeding at the Cook County Forest Preserve District produces thousands of young fish for county lakes. We take a closer look.

(Jonathunder / Wikimedia Commons)

The remarkable comeback of 13 sport fish species in the Illinois River began just after implementation of the Clean Water Act, according to a new study by the Illinois Natural History Survey. 

Hundreds of anglers participate in the #ChicagoFishes event Oct. 13 to celebrate decades of cleanup efforts to the Chicago River. (© Shedd Aquarium)

An American eel caught by a 5-year-old angler last week is possibly the first such eel ever recorded in the Chicago River, according to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

In the depths of a Chicago winter – and especially when there's a winter heat wave – sometimes you just have to get outside. But what if you’re not one for skiing or skating? We decided to go fish.

Scientists have found female eggs growing in the testicular tissue of some male largemouth bass taken from the Des Plaines River. (Jonathunder / Wikimedia Commons)

We speak to the co-author of a newly published study in which scientists dissected 51 male largemouth bass and found that 21 – some 41 percent – had grown female eggs in their testicular tissue.

The Chicago River is far from America's cleanest waterway. But a few anglers are trying their luck as its ecosystem improves. Captain Tim Frey took us for a winter fishing trip on the river.