A Little About The Team

We are not big on talking about ourselves, so we will just say that we are a small group of passionate fishermen who believe in respecting the earth we’ve been given. Our goal is to create a community online with fishermen who share our vision, and want to help create a comforting place that people can come to when they can’t be out in the stream or on the boat. We aim to inform, educate and entertain, and we do it all from what we consider to be one of the best rivers in the country.


TheRockyRiver.com aims to include everyone in the angling community, and we want you to be a part of us too. You are always welcome to post your fishing photos at any time, and we welcome you to contribute your words and your vision to the site as well. If you have an idea and want to write an article, or snapped a great photo that you want to have featured on the site, contact us and we’ll publish you!




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The Watershed

The Rocky River watershed entails 664 stream miles and drains 294 square miles of Northeast Ohio. In the watershed are Wallace Lake, Coe Lake, Baldwin Lake, Hinckley Lake, Lake Medina and Wildwood Lake. Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, NASA Glenn Research Station and Baldwin Wallace College are all found within the Rocky River water system.


Around 11,000 years ago, receding glaciers formed what is now the Rocky River. Found in the exposed shale cliffs of the river was a vicsious, armor-plated prehistoric fish called the Dunkleosteus terrelli, which could grow to 33 feet in length and weigh over 4 tons. Dunkleosteus also had a ferocious bite that delivered over 1,100 pounds of force, making the Great White shark seem like a pet. The fossil found in the Rocky River was 16-feet long, and carbon dated to be over 360 million years old. The fossil is now on display at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. An artist’s rendering of the fossil makes up the statue at the entrance of the Rocky River Nature Center.



AboutPolaroidThe Rocky River


The main stem of the Rocky River is formed where the West and East branches connect in North Olmsted, Ohio. The river then flows over 6 miles toward Lake Erie in Cleveland, between the cities of Rocky River and Lakewood. The majority of the Rocky River belongs to the Cleveland Metroparks’ Rocky River Reservation.



The East Branch of the Rocky River has been listed as an Important Birding Area (IBA) by Audubon Ohio. This is a target area for bird monitoring, habitat protection and restoration. In the East Branch watershed for example is Hinckley Lake. Each year at the lake, large Turkey Vultures return to the area like clockwork, which is a major media and public attraction.



The West Branch of the Rocky River forms at the joining of its north and south branches in Medina, where it flows Northbound until it meets the East Branch in North Olmsted. This stretch of the river is the only portion that remains in its natural state, although some tributaries of the West Branch have been modified for agricultural and urban purpose.





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The Rocky River, also known as the “urban jewel,” is literally minutes from downtown Cleveland, Ohio, and offers some of the finest steelhead trout fishing in the world.  The river is a mostly shallow (and easily-walkable), mid-sized stream with a varying bottom of shale, rock, silt and mud.  The Cleveland Metroparks owns the majority of the river and its surrounding area, and provides unrestricted access to anglers.


The main season for the trout is September through May.  Although rare, steelhead have been caught in the summer months as well, with the exception of July.  The ODNR (Ohio Department of Natural Resources) annually stocks the river with Little Manistee steelhead, which migrate into Lake Erie during the warm summer months, and return back to the river each year in the Fall.


Summer brings on one of the most underrated smallmouth bass fisheries in the state, which is a blessing for smallmouth anglers, as there is very little fishing pressure on the river.  While the average smallmouth bass is about 10 – 12 inches, anglers regularly catch larger fish, ranging from 2-5 pounds.  Many other varieties of fish can be caught in the river year round, including Largemouth Bass, Bluegill, Carp, Catfish, Suckers, Gar, Sheephead, Pike, Perch and rare landings of Brown Trout and Salmon.


The mouth of the Rocky River is considerably deeper, and offers a popular boat launch and marina for anglers to access the mouth of the river and Lake Erie.





The Protection of The Rocky River

Citizen action formed the Rocky River Watershed Council, with the goal of protecting and maintaining the Rocky River. An annual festival is held in the fall, with several volunteer and team clean-up efforts taking place throughout the year. myrockyriver.org