The season to take walleye, northern pike and muskellunge for all Upper Peninsula waters including the Great Lakes, inland waters and St. Mary’s River will open on Sunday May 15th. Cooler temperatures may slow catch rates.
Houghton Lake has been fair for walleye and crappie.
Perch fishing has been good off of Grand Haven this week.
Hamlin Lake has been good for gills,crappie and pike.
East and West Grand Traverse Bays have been great for Lake trout and ciscoes.
Tippy Dam is still fair for steelhead but there are very few fishing
Harvey The Cable Guy Winkler took advantage of the break in the weather and brought in a walleye and a couple of 13″+ crappie he caught using steelhead jigs tipped with minnows. He was fishing outside the canals this time.
Annie Mac charters put some big lake trout in the box this past weekend. This brute went just a touch over 20 pounds!!! Great job guys.
Upper Peninsula Fishing Report
Ontonagon: Boat anglers trolling west of the river mouth caught coho, lake trout and Atlantic salmon.
Lake Antoine: In Dickinson County was starting to produce decent numbers of perch. Some of the boundary water lakes and floodings were producing good size crappie.
Menominee River: Walleye were caught near the Hattie Street Dam when using live bait or casting small spoons and stick baits. Those trolling for walleye reported slow catch rates.
Little Bay De Noc: Perch anglers are still reporting catches south of the Day’s River. Spawning is pretty much over as the females are spent. Anglers were using minnows or crawlers in and around 34 feet. Smallmouth bass were caught in the Ford River in 6 to 14 feet and near Garth Point in 4 to 12 feet. Most were casting plastics, spinners or crankbaits. No beds were reported even though the fish appear to be staging for the spawn. The walleye opener looks good as water temperatures have increased to the low to mid 50’s. The mouth of the Whitefish River and south to Third Reef should be good areas considering the cool spring. The mouth of the Ford River to Breezy Point could also be good as walleye exit the Ford River.
Big Bay De Noc: The perch run in Garden Bay is almost over. Most of the fish caught now were small. Try minnows or crawlers in and around 8 feet in front of the Fishery on the west bank. A few smallmouth bass were caught in the South River area but the better fishing was near Ogontz when using plastics, spinners and crankbaits in 8 to 14 feet. The walleye opener here may be like it was 2 years ago. Try up by the Ogontz River in 8 feet. Some of the walleye may be late exiting the river making this a hot spot. Try the head of the Bay between the Fish Dam Rivers, Valentine Creek and the “Boot”.
Marquette: Surface water temperatures were 38 degrees. Anglers trolling spoons, jigging or casting for trout and salmon did catch a few brown trout near Shot Point. Lake trout were caught near the Chocolay River, a few miles north of the breakwall in the Lower Harbor and near Partridge Island in 130 to 170 feet. Very few chinook salmon were caught by those trolling north of the breakwall. Fishing on the Carp River has slowed. Anglers had no luck with spawn so they were switching to artificial baits and spinners which landed a few brook trout.
Deer Lake: In Marquette County is catch-and-release and artificial baits only. Anglers fishing from designated shore areas caught walleye ranging 13 to 18 inches and a few pike up to 24 inches on crankbaits in various colors. Those jigging caught walleye and pike on the north end near the dam.
Munising: Catch rates were fair. Pier anglers on Anna River reported slow fishing with only the occasional splake taken on a single egg. Those trolling the bay did manage to catch some coho and a few chinook. Some smaller chinook salmon in the 16 to 18 inch range with no clips were also caught. Surface water temperatures remain in the low 40’s.
Grand Marais: Pier anglers targeting whitefish reported slow catch rates. Some did catch the occasional coho or steelhead. Most were using a single egg or spawn with artificial baits. Boat anglers were limited due to windy conditions but on days when they could get out, good catches of coho including some limits were reported. A couple nice chinook over 10 pounds and the occasional steelhead were also caught.
Two Hearted River: Steelhead anglers were having good success.
St. Marys River: Above the Soo Locks, perch were caught in 30 feet near the green #8 buoy just out from Sherman Park. Anglers can access the water above the Freighter Locks off West Portage Street just past the International Bridge. Anglers wanting to target yellow perch should try Lake George on the east side of Sugar Island. In Raber Bay, a few yellow perch were caught at Carlton Creek in 4 to 8 feet with shiners and worms. Look for perch along the north shoreline in the bay. Try 4 to 6 feet just off the cattails and old weed beds. The perch run slowed in Maxton Bay which is off Drummond Island. A few small reports of perch came from Scott Bay when fishing around the docks and old weed beds.
Detour: Had very little fishing effort. A couple lake trout were caught south of the lighthouse in 80 feet when trolling spin-glo’s or yellow and black spotted 4 inch spoons. Water in the lower river was stained from run-off.
Cedarville and Hessel: In Cedarville, boat angling effort for perch slowed some but anglers were still targeting structure in and around the marina. Hessel saw more angling effort due to the continued presence of perch inside the marina. Seeing them kept anglers interested but the fish did not want to bite. Those using wigglers and mousies seemed to catch more fish than those using minnows but many were throw backs. A few suckers also moved in. Splake were still cruising the marina and a couple were caught.
St. Ignace: The fish cleaning station remains closed but the restrooms are now open. A few boats have done well lake trout fishing near Bois Blanc Island and decent near St. Ignace when trolling spoons or spin-glo’s. Steelhead action in the Carp River was slowing and the sucker bite was fairly slow. Anglers were moving upstream to target steelhead. A few pike, brook trout and brown trout were caught.
Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report
Walleye were being caught in the inland lakes including Black, Burt, Otsego and Hubbard. Suckers are being caught in almost every river connected to Lake Huron.
Cheboygan: The fish cleaning station as well as the restrooms were still closed at the city marina. Lake trout anglers heading out did catch some fish in waters less than 50 feet deep between Cheboygan and Bois Blanc Island. Most are trolling spoons and spin-glo’s.
Cheboygan River: The walleye bite was fairly good with some doing very well while others were skunked. Most were casting crankbaits, drifting crawlers or jigging with minnows or plastics. A couple pike, smallmouth bass and Atlantic salmon were also caught. The steelhead bite has slowed however the sucker run is in full swing and fish have been caught everywhere.
Mullett Lake: Those targeting smallmouth bass averaged 10 fish per person in 8 hours of fishing. Silver blade baits or white and gray swim baits with white jig heads seemed to work best in 5 to 15 feet along the rocky points and bays.
Ocqueoc River: Is producing some steelhead.
Rogers City: Surface temperatures were finally reaching the mid-40s. Boat anglers were fishing the water coming out of the Trout River just north of the harbor. Most were high-lining with cowbells and spin-glo’s in 12 to 20 feet. Try fishing Forty Mile Point or south towards Swan Bay and Adams Point in 12 to 60 feet with dodgers or cowbells with spin-glo’s. A few Atlantic salmon were seen in the marina. Try casting bright colored spoons like orange and green or bobber fishing with minnows.
Presque Isle: Has been producing some really nice Atlantic salmon with the better fishing south towards Stoneport. Run lines off boards and away from the boat. Good lures were spoons and body baits in orange and green, orange and silver, gold or just plain orange. Lake trout were caught near the bottom in 20 to 80 feet between the lighthouses. These fish seem to be scattered.
Grand Lake: Has sporadically continued to produce a decent number of walleye and jumbo perch. The walleye were 17 to 21 inches.
Montmorency County: Long Lake was producing a few walleye. Grass Lake was producing small catches of some nice panfish at dusk.
Alpena: Those searching for walleye in the bay had limited success. Anglers have been trying everything but no takers. Lake trout should still be in close as surface waters temperatures were still around 50 degrees.
Thunder Bay River: Still has a good number of steelhead but slow catch rates.
Oscoda: Pier fishing slowed. Walleye anglers had very limited success as it seems the fish have not made it up from the bay in big numbers yet. Those that did catch fish were casting body baits, twister tails or small spoons. Lake trout are still being caught off the pier head but in limited numbers while still-fishing with minnows or casting body baits.
Au Sable River: Had decent action with fish still on the beds. Steelhead were in the deeper holes like the Whirl Pool, High Banks, and the Meat Hole. Try spawn, beads, spinners, fly’s, and small spoons. Brown trout fishing was very good.
Higgins Lake: Boat anglers are getting a few lake trout in 80 to 100 feet and some fish were 6 to 8 pounds. A couple rainbow trout were caught off Big Creek in 30 to 35 feet. No perch to report yet.
Houghton Lake: Had good walleye action. The fish were found next to the weed beds in 8 feet. Crappie are just about done in the canals and the bluegills were starting to move in. Try minnows or worms.
Tawas: A few walleye were caught near the wall when trolling. Those working the drop-off in 20 to 25 feet had sporadic catch rates for chinook, steelhead and walleye off Alabaster and the Singing Bridge. Pier anglers picked up a few Atlantic salmon.
Tawas River: A few walleye, carp and bass were caught behind the Police Post.
Au Gres: Those trolling for walleye got a few fish off Whitestone Point, Point Au Gres and the mouth of the river in 15 to 25 feet. They used crawlers and body baits.
Au Gres River: Anglers were getting a few perch and some catfish on crawlers and stink bait.
Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report
Several of the local lakes in Lake, Manistee and Mason Counties had good bluegill action. Target the shallow bays and inlets.
Petoskey: Most of the boats heading out have done well for lake trout between the water treatment plant and Bay Harbor or when trolling towards the State Park. At Bay Harbor, anglers did well with spoons about halfway down in 70 to 80 feet while further east the fish were in 25 to 40 feet. Pier fishing remains slow.
Bear River: Water levels were high and steelhead fishing was slow even though some fish could still be seen jumping at the falls. The few caught were at the dam or the rapids between the bridges that are below the dam. Spawn bags and flies worked best. There are still some suckers, some chubs and some brown trout up at the dam. The mouth was slow for bigger fish but anglers could see a lot of small browns that were stocked a couple weeks ago.
Charlevoix: Had a few boats out targeting lake trout. Those that fished earliest did best. Lake trout were caught on spoons 30 to 40 feet down in 40 to 60 feet at both North and South Point. Walleye anglers are fishing the channel at dusk.
Lake Charlevoix: The fish cleaning station at the Ferry Beach launch is now open. Anglers have caught some walleye.
Torch Lake: Boat anglers have caught lake trout on the south end. Suckers moved into the Torch River and those fishing them had good success.
Traverse City: Cisco fishing was great in the East Bay. Boats are launching off M-37 and heading north. Those targeting steelhead reported a small push of fish in Elk Rapids where a few were caught on spawn. Lake trout have been caught on both bays by those trolling in deep water.
Boardman River: Remains slow for steelhead however a few were still being caught along with a fair to good number of brown trout. Sucker fishing has been good for those using crawlers or leaf worms.
Frankfort: Fishing has improved. Those fishing off the north pier on the harbor side caught some nice brown trout on spawn bags especially when there is a south wind. Those trolling to the south picked up lake trout and brown trout in 25 to 50 feet on bright colored spoons that are typically used for steelhead. Lake trout were caught on the east side of Platte Bay when using spoons.
Portage Lake: Had good largemouth bass fishing in the shallows.
Lakes Cadillac and Mitchell: Walleye have been caught by those fishing at night. Walleye and bullhead were caught in the canal between the two lakes. Rapalas and crawlers were the ticket. The crappie bite was on with a good number of fish caught in the shallow coves of Lake Mitchell. The bluegill action was still slow but lots of bass were caught and released.
Manistee: Surface water temperatures were about 47 degrees. Small numbers of brown trout and chinook salmon are being caught outside the pier. Walleye are being caught in the channel and between the piers.
Big Manistee River: Anglers caught some walleye with the largest reported at 30 inches. Fish were still being caught even after rain muddied the river.
Ludington: Had surface temperatures of 49 degrees. The city fish cleaning station is now open. Good numbers of lake trout are still being caught outside the piers. Small numbers of chinook salmon are starting to show up.
Pentwater: Anglers targeting lake trout in 50 to 70 feet had limited success. There have been reports of walleye being caught from the piers after sunset using deep-diving body baits or plastic swimbaits.
Pentwater Lake: Anglers are targeting bluegill and crappie in 10 to 20 feet. Look for drop-offs near spawning areas. Some are targeting northern pike while trolling or still-fishing with live or dead shiners.
Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report
Lake Erie: Catch rates for walleye increased as did the activity at Stony Point and Brest Bay. Most were trolling or drifting crawler harnesses or crank baits such as reef runners, husky jerks or shad raps in 16 to 25 feet. Hot-n-Tots also caught fish. Chartreuse, fire-tiger and purple were the hot colors. Shore anglers at the Pointe Mouillee access site reported decent catches of largemouth bass. Channel cats and bullhead were caught on chicken livers. Shore anglers at the Swan Creek access site caught channel cats, bullhead and the occasional yellow perch on crawlers.
Detroit River: Had good walleye fishing. Anglers were trolling or jigging Wyandotte worms and walleye minnows. The white bass are starting to show up and were caught off the pier in Wyandotte. Attention Anglers: The DNR will be collecting muskellunge eggs during the month of May. As a safety precaution, anglers should avoid coming close to the electro-fishing boat during the nighttime shocking operations. When the generator is running and the boat’s flood lights are on, staff are collecting fish while using electricity near the boat and want to make sure the public stays clear of the electric field.
Oakland County: Bass anglers continue to do well on both lakes when fishing along the flats. A few pike and walleye were caught by those casting or trolling body baits along the drop-offs. Those looking for panfish should try the canals and river mouths. Try a small jig tipped with a minnow or worm under a bobber. Surface water temperatures were between 55 and 59 degrees.
Lake St. Clair: Anglers caught large and smallmouth bass in 7 feet along the shoreline. Most fish were caught south of the Clinton River Cutoff launch and near the mouth of the Detroit River on crankbaits. Dark green and crayfish were good colors. Those targeting perch and panfish did best in the canals just north of the Clinton River Cutoff launch. Crawlers seemed to work best producing more bluegills and sunfish than perch. On the north end, some large and smallmouth bass were caught around the Metro Park and just north of the Selfridge launch when using X-raps and jerk baits along the walls in 3 to 6 feet. Tube baits in green/pumpkin or smoke/purple also did well. These anglers also caught a few pike. Panfish were caught in the canals around Selfridge and Fairhaven by those using red and chartreuse jigs in 7 foot.
St. Clair River: Had lots of anglers targeting walleye but catch rates slowed.
Lexington: Lake trout were caught by those trolling spoons and body baits in 20 to 40 feet. Success for coho, chinook, steelhead and pink salmon was sporadic. Those heading out deeper were looking for bigger fish. Pier anglers casting and fishing with minnows caught the occasional trout, perch or bullhead.
Port Sanilac: Was also giving up light numbers of trout and salmon in shallow waters 20 to 40 feet deep. Spoons and body baits worked best. Pier anglers caught the occasional coho, steelhead, walleye or white bass.
Harbor Beach: A few salmon were taken on spoons 30 to 55 feet down in 30 to 80 feet straight out and north of the harbor. Best colors were still orange, green, blue, and the yellow tail. Try some 3, 5, and 10 color lines with offshore boards as well. Some limits of lake trout are being taken straight out and north of the harbor in 60 to 100 feet. Try dodgers with spin-glo’s or clean spoons on the bottom. Hot colors were bright yellow, green and orange spin-glo’s or green, blue and perch colored spoons. Walleye were caught off the north wall when the winds were calm.
Saginaw Bay: Walleye were caught on crawler harnesses in 6 to 8 feet at Pinconning, in 18 feet just west of the Spark Plug and near the Dumping Grounds. On the east side, anglers had difficulty trolling because of the wind. Those bowfishing in the Quanicassee River picked up a few carp. Catch rates were inconsistent at Sebewaing. Caseville had little activity.
Saginaw River: Shore anglers fishing off Smith Park in Essexville caught freshwater drum and catfish on crawlers.
Tittabawassee River: A few walleye were caught on jigs and twisters tipped with minnows and crawlers near the State Street Bridge. White bass were also caught.
Flint River: Was producing good numbers of crappie.
Shiawassee River: The full blown white bass spawn is on with many limit catches of very large white bass being taken. Pike were also caught. Carp are also in spawning mode in all the flooded grassy areas off the Shiawassee and Bad Rivers.
Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report
Panfish activity picked up on the inland lakes in most counties. The fish were starting to move to shallow water. On sunny days, check out the warm shallows for crappie and bluegills. Pike have been caught in Gun Lake. Bass fishing was slow in Barry County.
St. Joseph: Pier fishing was very slow. Boat anglers were catching a few salmon and trout inside of 90 feet but some were in well over 100 feet and hitting on spoons.
South Haven: Pier fishing was very slow. Boat anglers continue to do well when targeting lake trout in 45 to 65 feet with cowbells and spin-glo’s. Perch were slow.
Kalamazoo River: Steelhead fishing is pretty much over however anglers will find bass, bluegills and suckers.
Grand Haven: Coho were caught 25 to 150 feet down in 160 to 260 feet. Bright colored spoons are working well in the upper water column. Those trolling near the pierheads are finding coho, chinook and a few brown trout. Pier fishing was slow.
Grand River at Grand Rapids: Few have been out but those fishing below the dams have caught some walleye. Anglers should find smallmouth bass and suckers.
Grand River at Lansing: Those fishing upstream of Moore’s Park have caught smallmouth bass and bluegills. Walleye have been caught below any of the area dams. Pike were noted below the North Lansing Dam. Crappie were caught near the Waverly Road Bridge however anglers need a boat to reach the fish here.
Muskegon: Boats are catching coho from the surface down to 150 feet in 180 to 260 feet. Orange spoons or body baits worked best up high while green or white flies did better in the deeper water.
Muskegon River: While the steelhead fishing is pretty much done, those fly fishing have caught some nice brown trout.
Whitehall: Pier anglers continue to catch walleye. Try casting rapalas or plastic swimbaits right at sunset and after. Perch and fire-tiger patterns seem to be good.