Easter Fishing Report 2017

 

PM Lake at Ludington has a perch bite the last 3 days with wigglers working best. Captain Chucks has been really busy with guys heading out using wigglers and perch shiners.

 

 

PM  lake perch
PM lake perch

 

 

Crystal, Portage, Manistee, Big Glen, Lake Charlevoix, Green Lake, are reporting a decent perch bite.

 

Sheldon from Hesperia Sport Shop has had a great spring for Steelhead on the White River below the Hesperia Dam

Image may contain: 1 person, child, outdoor, nature and water
Image may contain: 1 person, standing, tree, outdoor, nature and water
 
 
 

was just at Pappy’s Bait in Wellston and a guy brought in at 18 1/2 pound male steelhead

Image may contain: outdoor
 

Houghton Lake the Crappies are in

 

Crappie are in! Jacob Chipman from Frederick found the gills and crappie in the canals…including a 14″, master angler crappie. He said to use minnows under a pink, purple or fire tiger jig for the crappie and leaf or wax worms for the gills. They’re both hitting about 18″ from the surface.

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, standing and outdoor
 
 
 
 

These nice Detroit Walleye fell victim to the Fish Bones Slim Line Rattle Jigs yesterday thanks for the pic guys

Image may contain: food
 
 
 

Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Harbor Springs: This side of the Bay was mainly ice free but the dock at the launch was not in yet. The other side of the Bay still had a lot of loose ice, so depending on wind direction it could blow back over.

Petoskey: Little Traverse Bay still had quite a bit of loose ice which makes boat fishing a slim possibility. The launch at the marina does not have the dock in yet. The breakwall ice and snow is melting and anglers were fishing inside the breakwall when there was no floating ice. Catch rates were hit-or-miss but a couple steelhead and coho were caught.

Bear River: Water levels were still moderately high. A fair number of steelhead were hooked between the dam and the mouth when drifting spawn bags and flies. Anglers are reminded that brown trout season is closed until the last Saturday in April.

Traverse City: Most of the boating action was on the West Bay where anglers were catching plenty of perch northeast of Clinch Park when using minnows and wigglers. Though many were small, some did manage to catch fish 8 inches or larger. Lake herring were caught north of Bryant Park and off the M-22 launch when jigging. A couple nice trout were caught at the south end of the East Bay near Acme. Those targeting steelhead in Elk Rapids caught some fish below the dam on spawn and wax worms.

Boardman River: Was slow but a couple steelhead and the occasional brown trout were still caught.

Leland: A few were fishing in the harbor and the river for steelhead but only a couple were landed. Dredging at the harbor mouth was to start this week. It would be challenging to try and get a larger boat out at this point.

Platte Bay: Had mainly shore anglers that were surfcasting but few fish were caught. Springtime water levels at the mouth of the Platte River are currently low, so it would be difficult for anglers to get out into Platte Bay with boats larger than 16 feet. The lower river has some steelhead.

Frankfort: Pier anglers were getting the occasional steelhead or brown trout on spawn, spoons or body baits. Most of the steelhead are chrome colored. Those trolling the harbor caught brown trout when casting body baits.

Betsie River: Had a lot of anglers as steelhead fishing continues.

Portage Lake: Perch anglers were fishing several locations but catch rates were hit-or-miss. Minnows, worms and wrigglers were used.

Manistee: Surface temperatures were about 41 degrees. All the docks are in at the launches however the restrooms and fish cleaning station were still closed. Perch were caught off the north pier when using minnows and a couple steelhead were taken when using spawn bags. Those trolling along the shoreline were getting some brown trout.

Ludington: Surface temperatures made it up to 42 degrees. The restrooms and the fish cleaning station were still closed. A small number of brown trout were caught by pier anglers using spawn bags or those trolling the shoreline. Some perch were caught in Pere Marquette Lake.

Pentwater: Adverse weather limited boat anglers. The water around the piers was cloudy and those fishing reported slow catch rates.

Pentwater Lake: Those trolling caught the occasional steelhead or brown trout. Perch fishing was good in 10 to 30 feet using perch rigs tipped with white spikes and wax worms. Those fishing Longbridge Road caught suckers and bullhead on crawlers.

 

 

Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Cheboygan: The city launch and marina at the mouth of the river have the docks in.

Cheboygan River: Shore anglers had some luck with steelhead at the dam and downstream when using spawn. Those that tried crank baits and spinners had no luck.

Rogers City: The ice is gone and there is one dock in at the launch. When boats can get out, Atlantic salmon and lake trout should be available. Try trolling in stained waters less than 40 feet deep. In Swan Bay, bright spoons or body baits should produce some fish. Boat anglers were targeting lake trout near the bottom inside 50 feet. Try big flashers with flies or spin-glo’s. A few anglers were casting for Atlantic salmon off the wall. Try orange or chartreuse.

Rockport: Anglers were casting for Atlantic salmon from the wall. The fish should show up any day now. A few boats were getting lake trout just off the bottom in 60 feet. Try big flashers with flies or spin-glo’s.

Alpena: A few boat anglers were out in Thunder Bay. Those trolling for walleye have caught and released a few smallmouth bass.

Thunder Bay River: Waters levels were elevated but anglers still caught a couple steelhead when drifting spawn near the 9th Street Dam or Hot-n-Tots from the bridges.

Oscoda: Pier anglers caught lake trout when drifting or still-fishing with spawn and minnows or when casting spoons.

Au Sable River: Water levels were high and turbid. Those fishing the lower river in Oscoda caught a couple steelhead on spawn but more fish were caught up near Foote Dam. Carp and freshwater drum were caught on worms.

Houghton Lake: Crappie anglers are fishing the canals. Sucker fishing is starting to pick up on the Cut River near the mouth of Houghton Lake.

Tawas: Pier anglers are catching brown trout, steelhead and smallmouth bass when still-fishing with minnows or casting lures. A few smaller perch were caught inside the pier. Those trolling were starting to catch walleye off Tawas Point, Alabaster and Whitestone Point. The fish were caught on body baits in 10 to 25 feet. Lake trout were caught near the reef.

Tawas River: Was still producing suckers.

Au Gres: Anglers caught several lake trout while fishing for walleye.

Rifle River: At Greenwood Road was producing suckers.

 

 

Upper Peninsula Fishing Report

Marquette: Both the Upper and Lower Harbors are producing coho along with a few brown trout and splake. Those jigging at the “bubblers” did best with pink or white jig heads with a white twisty tail. Those trolling also caught fish with Hot-n-Tots, shad raps and small spoons for coho. Steelhead are being caught on the Carp and Chocolay Rivers.

Menominee River: Anglers fishing the Turn Basin and were jigging plastics, live baits and zip lures. Brown trout were caught north and south of the mouth when trolling spoons and stick baits. Fishing pressure has been extremely heavy below the Hattie Street Dam.

Little Bay De Noc: All rivers are open and flowing with water levels down some. The Bay is open but still had pack ice stacked on various shorelines. The launches that are ready for use are Rapid River, Gladstone and North Shore. The dock on the Ford River should be in this week. This should be a good week for perch anglers to try their luck. Several anglers have started steelhead fishing in the Day’s, Escanaba and Ford Rivers. Best catches were reported were in the Day’s River across US-2 and when fly fishing the Escanaba River up near the 1st Dam. Most used spawn, beads or yarn.

Manistique River: The public launch is open and several boat and shore anglers have started fishing the mouth for steelhead. Fair to good catches were reported from the dam to “big bass hole” which is just south of the Cedar Street Bridge. Anglers are fly fishing with beads and yarn or casting spawn and yarn. Water temperatures were between 38 and 44 degrees.

Au Train: The brownstone launch was currently not usable. A piece of cement slab at the launch pad was moved by the ice and is blocking access. Only a couple steelhead were caught in the Rock River.

Munising: The ice is gone and the docks are in at the public launch. Anglers reported good catches of coho when casting or trolling with spoons. Shore and boat anglers were taking a few splake. Steelhead fishing was slow off the Anna River.

Grand Marais: Good catches of coho and some nice steelhead 25 to 30 inches were reported by boat anglers. Most of the steelhead were dark, about 50% spent and appeared to be fish coming down the river. Shore anglers did poorly with very few hits off the Sucker River and Carpenter Creek area. River levels are high due to recent rains so if you are planning on fishing the mouth of the Sucker River you will want to bring waders.

Two Hearted River: Had high water levels. Steelhead were spotty at best. Most roads in the area are now open.

Detour: To the north, the ice is gone from the Raber Bay boat launch and the Lime Island Dock but the docks are not in yet. Look for spawning perch in 4 to 6 feet in and around old cattails and weeds with small minnows or wigglers. At Detour Village, the ice is gone at both boat launches. This is the time to start fishing for Atlantic salmon which are close to shore and chasing smelt. Try long-lining with hard crank baits that simulate smelt in 6 to 10 feet. A few anglers were targeting steelhead in Albany Creek which is about ten miles west of Detour Village under M-134 but no catches were reported.

Cedarville and Hessel: The public launch at Lake Side Road has open water. Launching here allows anglers to fish for perch at the mouth of McKay Creek, and McKay Bay. The Cedarville launch off Meridian Street in town has open water. A few reports of perch have come from Cedarville Bay, south of the boat launch and around the cattails in 6 to 8 feet. Anglers were using small minnows. East winds blew the ice out of the Hessel Marina and finger docks. Splake fishing was good with small minnows and frozen smelt 20 inches off the bottom in 6 to 8 feet outside the steel breakwall.

St. Ignace: Had no angler activity. There is one dock in at the public launch. The Pine River is slow and the docks are not in yet. Anglers are targeting steelhead on the Carp River using spawn but no smelt run as of yet.

Black River: In Mackinac County has steelhead running and catch rates were moderate.

 

 

Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake Erie: Walleye fishing in Brest Bay slowed but should pick back up. Anglers were trolling crank baits, reef runners and husky jerks.

Huron River: Was still producing some steelhead for those using spawn, wax worms or flies.

Wamplers Lake: In Lenawee County had anglers taking panfish near the drop-offs with limited success. Anglers were marking a number of fish that were suspended in 24 to 25 feet on the west end but could not get them to bite. They were using worms, minnows and artificial baits. Water temperatures were in the mid to high 40’s. Sand Lake which is next to Wamplers was also producing a few panfish.

Detroit River: The walleye bite is improving. Anglers are using ¾ to 1 ounce jigs with minnows anywhere from 12 to 18 inches off the bottom. The cuts and canals are producing panfish.

Lake St. Clair: Water temperatures have remained in the mid 40’s, but were starting to increase. Clarity still remains below average due to excessive runoff. Most species are still lethargic, but some anglers were able to catch smallmouth bass and perch. Those targeting bass did well in 3 to 5 feet when casting crank baits. Perch were caught in the canals and were hitting on minnows but worms were also working at times. Crappie and bluegills were caught in the canals and marinas when using wax worms and crawlers just off the bottom. The Clinton River was turbid and muddy and perch fishing slowed in the spillway.

St. Clair River: Anglers are catching salmon off the wall at Port Huron. Smelt numbers are sparse but a couple anglers were taking a few. Anglers were beginning to catch limits of walleye in the North Channel however many fish were undersize.

Lexington to Port Sanilac: Those out trolling were marking fish in 18 to 40 feet but were not catching any. Those fishing inside the harbor at Lexington managed to catch a couple coho, steelhead and perch with a crawler or minnow under a bobber.

Saginaw Bay: Walleye anglers off Linwood were marking fish but had no success catching them. A few walleye were caught off the north end of Spoils Island when jigging minnows in 8 to 10 feet. Water levels near the river and the inner bay were high and muddy. A few catfish were caught at the Hot Ponds. Quanicassee to Sebewaing had poor fishing with only small fish taken. Those fishing the day use area on the Pinnebog River were taking suckers but heavy sinkers were needed due to the increased flow.

Saginaw River: Water levels were high and muddy.


Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

St. Joseph: Fishing pressure was low. The few boats that have made it out struggled to find fish because the lake was churned up after the storms and strong winds. Most were slow trolling just outside the piers and along the shoreline. Pier anglers struggled as well but some did manage to catch a few whitefish and the occasional brown trout when using spawn.

South Haven: Fishing pressure was low as few boats were able to get out. Those that did get out reported slow coho and brown trout fishing.

Kalamazoo River: Has high water levels which is limiting fishing. The river still has a good number of steelhead. The closed tributaries also have more fish than usual because of the high water levels.

Rabbit River: Has a good number of steelhead.

Grand Haven: After all the rain, the water along the shoreline was muddy. Pier anglers caught a few brown trout on live minnows but the action was slow. A couple menominee whitefish were caught on wax worms or skein.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Steelhead are still being caught here and in the Rogue River however high water levels have made fishing a challenge. Use caution.

Jackson County: Panfish including perch are being caught in various lakes.

Muskegon: Pier and shore anglers reported slower catch rates for steelhead and brown trout. When the weather allows, boat anglers caught a few brown trout when trolling orange or green body baits along the shoreline.

Muskegon River: Continues to have a good number of steelhead and some walleye but that season does not open until the last Saturday in April. In Mecosta County, there was good panfish action near Rogers Heights.

Whitehall: Pier anglers caught brown trout and steelhead when still-fishing with spawn. Whitefish were also caught using wax worms or a single egg.

White Lake: Anglers caught perch in 20 to 30 feet using perch rigs with wax worms.

White River: Had fresh fish coming from the lake.

I have not Found Safe Ice in Northern Michigan

 

Ice Thickness Chart
Ice Thickness Chart

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have been all around the state and have found lakes that go from 5 inches down to 1 inch  in a few feet, the snow really hurt the ice but this warm up should help get the snow down so it can freeze.  Have heard of many people falling though trying to get out, a few are fishing but is it worth the risk. There was a rumor that Higgins had ice and it is wide open so you need a boat to fish it.

White Lake by Whitehall was the only lake I saw shanties on as the snow missed there so they had ice but the warm weather will make it questionable.

The Upper got hammered even worse with snow and most reports are slush and unsafe ice.

They have been fishing on Wixom and Sanford lake in the shallow bays and Canals with gills and crappie biting. Muddy Bay has been hit hard as it is shallow also they do not have the snow like many other places.

 

Chappel Dam Grocery by Gladwin says  a few have been out on Wiggins and Pratt with 3 to 5 inches.

Black Bass Bay by Roger City had 3 to 5 inches but the last snow seem to screw the ice up last weekend be careful

Houghton Lake Ice Report 12.21.16. The ice is being stubborn and unpredictable. Ice thickness ranges from 8″ to 2″. There are guys fishing, but they have been staying fairly close to shore. The south shore weed bed can be fished to about 200 – 300 yards out, but you need to check as you go. Areas of east bay, north shore by Flint Rd and in the canals can be fished. No one is traveling by quad or sled yet.

Image may contain: outdoor and water
Image may contain: outdoor
 
 
 

Current ice conditions on Lake Missaukee as of 12:30pm today- 2″ of ice, 1″ of water, 2″ of foamy ice. 75 yards out, 2 blows with a spud goes through. It is worse in the areas where the snow is sitting. 

Again, this is not safe! If you choose to go, please use extreme caution. 

~Casey Miller

 

ICE UPDATE!
Conditions on both Lakes Mitchell and Cadillac are very inconsistent. Some places that I was yesterday now have some dark spots bleeding through the snow. If you were planning on coming up from out of town you would be better off waiting until we have more consistent conditions. Everybody be safe this weekend.

Checked a couple places on Lake Mitchell today. South side of lake over by Thirstie’s gas station there is just over 4 1/2″ of ice. West side of lake off Camp Torenta there is about 4″ of ice. Lake Cadillac is a couple of days behind Mitchell, I’ll start checking there tomorrow. Consider all areas uncharted territory before heading out even if you see the tracks of others, use your spud and your head…

Image may contain: outdoor and water
Image may contain: outdoor
 
 
 
 
 

Has a full supply of live bait and Fishing was slow today for the most part. But the ice conditions on upper Hamlin are looking good. Most spots have a solid 6″ of ice. 
Indian Pete bayou has a 5 to 6″ of ice, there is a few spots around the edges that are questionable but for the most part it is good solid ice. 
Fishing should improve after this front has moved through.

 

Lower Hamlin Grocery has new owners
 
Image may contain: 1 person, standing

Lower Hamlin Grocery has winter bait and reports a few guys heading out this week

 
 
 
 

We currently have 3 inches of ice at the end of our docks and we are starting to see people fishing in front of the old Wesley’s Marina. Just a reminder that we are open 5:30am – 5:30pm, Friday- Sunday, 7:00am – 5:30pm Tuesday – Thursday.

 
 
 
 

Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Most of the inland lakes in this region did not have safe ice. Those anxious to head out would be wise to fish in shallow waters only. With the deep snow cover and strong winds, ice formation will not be uniform. Many of the inland lakes in this region are being reported as too early for safe ice especially with the amount of snow cover over the last week.

Grand Lake: A few anglers were testing the ice however the DNR cannot stress enough the importance of ice safety and ask anglers to be very cautious.

Higgins Lake: Was all open water except for a little ice around the shoreline.

Houghton Lake: Has ice but it is not uniform by any means especially with 6 to 8 inches of snow on top. The better ice was close to shore in the shallows. A few pike have been taken on tip-ups with blues or golden shiners.


Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Ice is forming on the inland lakes however areas in the snow-belt have received quite a bit of snow. That snow will insulate the ice and slow the freezing process. Those heading out were fishing in shallow waters only. Be careful near inlets and outlets. Some limits of panfish were reported by those fishing in shallow water.

Lake Cadillac: Had a few anglers out on the west end of the lake. It might be a good idea to avoid the deeper waters at this time.

Lake Mitchell: A few ice anglers were targeting bluegill and crappie in Big Cove.

Lake Missaukee: Had a few ice anglers fishing in shallow waters.


Upper Peninsula Fishing Report

Thin ice cover was reported in some of the sheltered bays and along the shoreline of Lake Superior. Inland lakes in the western end had ice starting to form but caution is advised. On the east end, lakes were ice and snow covered. Many have tracks where anglers have tested the ice. Some have ventured out on a few of the larger lakes such as Manistique and Brevoort Lake but caution needs to be used. A few pike have been caught. Recent snowfall has made foot travel on the ice more challenging.

 

Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake Erie: A few ice anglers were jigging for walleye in 16 to 18 feet in Brest Bay. Use extreme caution. Those fishing near the mouth of the Huron River caught bluegills and one steelhead in Lake Point Marina. Ice anglers in the Metro Park Marina caught yellow perch on minnows.

Huron River: Was still giving up the occasional steelhead.

Detroit River: Had a few anglers ice fishing in Airport Bay.

Lake St. Clair: Anglers hitting the canals and marinas had mixed results for panfish and yellow perch however a few nice catches of large yellow perch and crappie were reported. Those fishing the marinas in St. Clair Shores had success. Ice has begun to form in the main lake however conditions are day-to-day and are very unpredictable with the recent high winds and current.

Saginaw Bay: Had a few anglers fishing from shore ice only off the Pinconning Park, a couple roads south of there and off the end of Linwood Road. These anglers are perch fishing in just a couple feet of water. Shore anglers were targeting perch in Sebewaing but most of the fish were small. Many anglers will fish in a pair of neoprene waders this time of year so if they fall through in shallow water they don’t get wet.

Pine River: Largemouth bass and black crappie were caught in Alma and St. Louis. Most were using stick baits and surface lures.


Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Kalamazoo River: Steelhead anglers did well trolling silver and green Hot-n-Tots.

Hutchins Lake: In Allegan County had a few ice anglers. Some did well with demon glows and spikes near the channel.

Thornapple Lake: In Barry County was producing some fish for ice anglers however caution needs to be used.

Branch County: Anglers were taking limit catches of bluegill at Cemetery Lake. Tip-ups were showing up on Messenger Lake. Please use caution.

Muskegon River: Continues to produce some steelhead. Water temperatures were in the mid 30’s. Skim ice was found along the shoreline.


 

Baitman’s Report for 1/30/16

Cal Chapman speared this monster pike today which was 40″ and weighed 18# 14 oz. Tower Pond. That pike won’t be eating anymore trout in that pond or in the Black River. Congrats Cal.

Parrott's Outpost's photo.

After day 2 of the tournament:
6.6 lbs is leading the board.

Dan's Resort's photo.

Good afternoon !
Another busy morning dipping bait at Hamlin (Bait) Grocery. Still much buzz about all the fish coming in.
Though it has slowed down , still guys catching limits of nice bluegill. Average size is now 7-9inch with the occasional 10 plus inches. A few that are focusing on Perch have done well, overall much smaller fish. A few nice pike as well as some very nice walleye have been brought into the store for my viewing pleasure, but mums the word on location of catch. A good starting point may be Indian Pete West to the Narrows. 

With the warm weather ice has been of concern…. All I will say is what I am told,
6 inch. + in most areas. Sleds & quads have been out for over 2 weeks. If you wonder out on the lower lake be mindful of many weak areas of ice. Use common sense, and above all remember ” No ice is safe ice”.
Just about all bait has been used and tried this last week. Wax worms and red spikes seem to be popular for bluegill. Golden and suckers for top-up though suckers tend to be a little more hardy.
Tungsten gigs are a favorite …..
In colors or green, yellow , orange ,chartreuse and glow when available. The hot pick of the week: red, white & blue.

Be sure to stop in and say hello, we enjoy hearing all your “BIG FISH” stories.
Be safe & Fish-on !

Vaughn

 

Stop in for all your ice fishing needs! We have Blues, Perch minnows, Golden shiners, and suckers! Waxies, spikes (red and white), and mousees!

Maybe the fish are starting to get over their lockjaw… and just in time for this weekend’s T.U.T. fishing tournament. Collin from HL started his stringer with this nice walleye. Matthew Bowman from Mt. Pleasant is back again with a pair of pike and will be heading out again in the a.m. with his dad.

Lyman's On The Lake's photo.
Lyman's On The Lake's photo.

HL Legend, Clare Gee scored first this morning with a keeper walleye on a Foo Flyer.. chief rival Dave wasn’t impressed.. They fished together in the evening and Glare had the last laugh with his 31″ 8lb pike and 17″ walleye using a Fish Bones Froggie jig using a single hook with minnow. A customer was impressed with Dave’s fish – he thought it was “a very nice perch”.

Lyman's On The Lake's photo.
Lyman's On The Lake's photo.

The first fish of the morning didn’t take long for the guys staying in our sleeper shanty. James Rush caught this 22″ walleye on a tip-up with a Lyman’s Golden Shiner.

Lyman's On The Lake's photo.
Hooked up on Higgins Lake
Missy Ruhlig's photo.
Missy Ruhlig to Hooked up on Higgins Lake

Thanks Bob Stockton from hooked up on higgins.our group had an awesome time with u on the lake today!!! You are one hell of a guide couldn’t have asked for a better teacher or new friend thanks again stay safe and keep ur lines tight!

· 

Another great day of fishing. Father and son, my girl and I. We all limited out on some nice lakers.

Hooked up on Higgins Lake's photo.

Thanks Carl! It was my pleasure.

Carl Ventimiglia's photo.
Carl Ventimiglia to Hooked up on Higgins Lake

Thank you Bob for a great day and all your hard work. My son had a blast, Bob probably walked 5 miles just resetting baits for us. If you want top notch guide this guy knows his stuff!!

 

Need of week of Cold Weather for Safe Ice

PHOTO TAKEN TODAY OFF OF LYMANS ON THE LAKE HOUGHTON LAKE
PHOTO TAKEN TODAY OFF OF LYMANS ON THE LAKE HOUGHTON LAKE

Lake Missaukee has 2 to 3 inches of ice and the ice is not safe. Call Miller’s Corner @ 231-839-0440 for latest info

Houghton Lake has 3 to 6 inches of ice and pike and walleye have been biting be careful some areas are not safe. Call Angelo’s Party Store 898-202-4422, Four Season Party Store 989-422-5230 and Wright’s 989-202-4531 H&H Fireworks (989) 366-0126

Lyman’s on the Lake 989-422-3231 reports

Randy Marquiss from Midland caught this 38 5/8" beast that weighed in at 14.8 lbs on a Lyman's Blue Minnow under a tip-up
Randy Marquiss from Midland caught this 38 5/8″ beast that weighed in at 14.8 lbs on a Lyman’s Blue Minnow under a tip-up

Randy Marquiss from Midland caught this 38 5/8″ beast that weighed in at 14.8 lbs on a Lyman’s Blue Minnow under a tip-up in 7′ of water on the south shore weed bed on Houghton Lake.

FISHING CONDITIONS ON LAKES CADILLAC AND MITCHELL
FROM PILGRIM VILLAGE FISHING SHOP
WEDNESDAY JANUARY 6, 2016

FISHING CONDITIONS ON LAKES CADILLAC AND MITCHELL FROM PILGRIM VILLAGE FISHING SHOP
FISHING CONDITIONS ON LAKES CADILLAC AND MITCHELL
FROM PILGRIM VILLAGE FISHING SHOP

Our phone rings constantly from people all over the state looking for ice. We Have Ice! Fishable in selected areas.
Lake Mitchell:
The South East side of Lake Mitchell, off the boat launch area by Thirsty’s has 3″. This area is one of the spear anglers favorite for Pike and usually good for Gills and Crappie for the Jiggers. There’s aleady a few pop-up shanties and a permanent in the area.

There is about 3 1/2″ – 5 1/2″ of ice in Big Cove and 3″ – 4″ of ice in Small Cove. This is a favorite spot for pan fishermen and tip-up anglers for Pike and Walleye.
Expect to find 3″ – 4″ behind the Sands motel and Marina restaurant on the West side of Lake Cadillac.

A few have tried by the Causeway along M-115, a good Crappie and tip-up area. But there is less ice. Best to bypass this area until the ice gets better. The cold night temperatures should help in making ice.

Other popular areas on Lake Cadillac like the East side by the city and Kenwood Park are not safe at this writing. One hit with a spud goes through in these areas with junky white ice. Like Lake Mitchell soon we will be exploring other areas.
Even if you see other anglers on the ice, use your spud to check your way. Don’t go out without a pair of Ice Spikes!

Around Traverse City Green, Duck and Long are not froze. Spider Lake, Arbutus, Ellis Lake, Lake Dubonnet(mud Lake) also have 3 to 4 inches

Fife Lake has just froze and is not safe call Kathy’s Lakeside Party Store 231-879-4346 for latest info

Hamlin Lake has ice and is not safe Call Hamlin Grocery @ 231-843-2058 or Captain Chucks@ 231-843-4458

Portage Lake is half froze and not safe Call Osborn’s @ 231-889-3775 or Dewey @ Don’s Sport Shop 231-735-5028

Otsego Lake has 3 to 4 inches ice Call Northern Sports @ 989-448-2014 Brian Derminer’s Party Store 989-705-7051 Tony @ otsego Corner Store 989-7321-8664 for latest info

Higgins Lake is wide open Call Sports Barn @ 989-821-9511 or Higgins Lake Hardware Call Brian @ 989-821-6677

Lake St. Helen has 3 to 5inches and pike, walleye, and panfish have been biting. Call Dave @ Malcomb’s Tackle Box 989-389-2100

Lake Margrethe is froze with 2 to 3 inches Call Skip’s Sport Shop @ 989-348-7111

Lewiston Report that west Twin has 3 to 4 inches. Call Midlakes Party @ (989) 786-3227 for latest info

Fletcher Floodwater has ice 2 to 4 inches. Call A1 Party Store for the latest info @ (989) 742-4112

Black Bass Bay has 4 inches. Call Adrian’s Sport for the latest ice update @ (989) 734-2303

Long Lake has ice call Buck’s Bait and Tackle @ (989) 595-2121 for latest ice info

Leroy reports some lakes are froze Call Craig Eyes Have it @ (231) 768-5653 for latest info

Pentwater Lake, is open and slow fishing Pentwater Angler for the latest info 231-869-5357

White Lake is open and boats cannot be launch so waiting for ice Call Johnson’s Outdoors for the latest fishing info @ 231-893-6688

Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Ice was starting to form on many of the smaller lakes however there is no safe ice yet. The big lakes like Charlevoix and Walloon still had open water.

Betsie River: Steelhead fishing has been good despite the cold.

Manistee River: Steelhead fishing has been good on all sections, from the mouth up to Tippy Dam. The rain in December brought good numbers of fish into the river. Anglers are still catching some fresh fish throughout the river system. Try spawn, beads or a jig and wax worm.

Little Manistee River: Closed to fishing on January 1st and will not re-open until April 1st.

Pere Marquette River: Steelhead fishing has been good despite the cold. Try fishing the deeper holes.

Upper Peninsula Fishing Report

Not much activity up here just yet. Starting to get ice, but still thin in most places. Snow showers the end of the week could dump enough snow to slow the freezing process. Anglers would be wise to wait for another week or two.

Lake Gogebic: Ice anglers were taking some walleye in the shallows when jigging rapalas or using sucker minnows. A few perch were also taken on jigs with wigglers or spikes. Anglers are reminded to use caution especially with snow on the lake which makes it harder to see the bad spots.

Little Bay De Noc: Was making ice north of Gladstone. Ice has formed from the “Narrows” north to the head of the Bay but ice conditions are DANGEROUS especially with 2 to 3 inches of snow cover. A couple anglers were walking out near Butler Island but again extreme caution needs to be used. Those looking for perch said the bite was slow.

St. Mary’s River: Anglers were fishing Munuscong Bay most likely for perch. Remember, first ice is dangerous ice and extreme caution needs to be used.

Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Huron River: Anglers are taking some steelhead near Labo Park. Most are boat anglers fishing the deep holes.

Lake St. Clair: Had no safe ice. Skim ice was forming along the shoreline as well as in the canals and marinas. Wind can move the shore ice around and plug up the area around a boat launch very quickly so boating season on the lake is pretty much over. Cold weather over the next few days could make enough ice to allow some fishing however rain and warmer temperatures by the end of the week could ruin those chances.

St. Clair River: Fishing activity has been light. Strong winds have stirred up the south end of Lake Huron and has made the river muddy. There has been little ice formation so Lake Huron and the St. Clair River were pretty much ice free.

Saginaw Bay: There is too much ice for shore fishing but not enough for ice fishing. There is a layer of “shove ice or blow ice” that blew in along the shoreline around the entire bay and extends out anywhere from 200 to 400 yards. Fishing is pretty much confined to sitting on docks in marina basins and perch fishing through the holes in the ice. Marina basins that anglers might want to try include Eagle Bay up near Standish, Gambil’s Landing near Pinconning, Linwood, Sunset Bay near Unionville, Sebewaing City Marina on the Sebewaing River, Bay Shore near Bay Port and the basins off the Pigeon River in Caseville.

Kawkawlin River: Was iced over.

Saginaw River: Had boat anglers targeting walleye just downstream from the Independence Bridge however the river and the launches were icing up. Marina basins and boat launches at most locations on the river were not useable. The only exception was the Zilwaukee ramp and the McGillvary Street ramp which is just downstream of the Independence Bridge. Walleye anglers were fishing around the U.S.S. Edson however boat anglers need to be vigilant and watch for large sheets of ice that that could keep them from moving freely around the river. Anyone taking to a boat in these conditions needs to be sure the motor is running properly, wear lots of warm clothes, a life jacket, and be sure to have a cell phone in case they need to call for help.

Tittabawassee River: Was filled with floating ice. The boat ramps at Gordonville Road and Center Road are iced in and not useable.

Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

No ice fishing as the waters are still wide open. A few small lakes and ponds may start to get ice this week however it will not be safe ice.

St. Joseph River: Has open water and anglers are still catching steelhead.

Kalamazoo River: Open water fishing remains. Anglers are still taking a fair to good number of steelhead.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Continues to produce steelhead and the occasional walleye.

Rogue River: Still has the occasional steelhead hitting on flies or spawn.

Muskegon River: Has open water and anglers are catching steelhead.

We’re back on the ice!

We had temps in the single digits last night making more ice for this weekend and many lakes have safe ice again but use a spud and check all the way out.

jessica

Jessica McLain Says “biggest fish I have ever held! It was a rush to be out there the ice was like glass. Good job Justin Burr!”

Small Shallow Lakes around Traverse City have safe ice with many fishing Spider Lake, Arbutus, Ellis Lake, Lake Dubonnet, Long Lake went over but is not safe.

Houghton Lake has 4 to 8 inches of ice and pike and walleye have been biting. Call Angelo’s Party Store 898-202-4422, Lyman’s on the Lake 989-422-3231, Papa’s Bait 989-429-5780 Four Season Party Store 989-422-5230 and Wright’s 989-202-4531

Reports from Lymans on the Lake A report from around the North Bay….”the ice has a better looking color this morn. 5″ in front by me. That open water at long Point still open, area seams a bit smaller. We will see what this new cold front does.????”

One of our regulars just stopped in the shop with an ice report. We can only speak to the ice in front of our store (south shore), but there is about 5 inches along our shore and up to 6 1/2″ out about a half mile. He was able to get on with his quad.

We’re waiting to hear reports for the rest of the lake, so if you’re venturing out from another location, use extreme caution.

lymans_pike

Justin B. caught this beauty on Houghton Lake

36″ and 10lbs caught on a Golden Shiner from Lyman’s on the Lake with the freshest bait, LOTL.

The ice is getting a little soft in spots, so you might want to wait a few days before heading back out.

Lake St. Helen has 4 to 7 inches and pike, walleye, and panfish have been biting. Call Dave @ Malcomb’s Tackle Box 989-389-2100

Lake Missaukee has 4 to 8 inches of ice and most are fishing from Lake City shoreline as Green Rd has 5 inches 10″ on the east side and the coves are safe. Call Miller’s Corner @ 231-839-0440 for latest info and the fish are biting.

Fife Lake is froze and perch fishing has been fair along with pike call Kathy’s Lakeside Party Store 231-879-4346

Lake Skegemog is froze with 3 to 5 inches of clear black ice and guys will be out on it this weekend Manistee Lake by Kalkaska has 4 to 7 inches of ice and fish ing has been good. Call Jack’s Sport Shop@ 231-258-8892 for the latest ice fishing conditions

Hamlin Lake has ice and guys are fishing it and catching fish but be very careful as you have to pick your way out to the fishing spot as the spring just froze and are noot safe. Call Hamlin Grocery @ 231-843-2058 or Captain Chucks@ 231-843-4458 Craig at Captain Chucks does a lot of fishing on Hamlin Lake but is waiting for thicker ice

Portage Lake is froze again three inches of ice but nobody was fishing but after last nights single digits maybe a few have tried. Call Osborn’s @ 231-889-3775 or Dewey @ Don’s Sport Shop 231-735-5028

Otsego Lake has good ice with shanties out on it Call Northern Sports @ 989-448-2014

Lake Margrethe is froze with 3 to 5 inches and good walleye, perch and pike. Call Skip’s Sport Shop @ 989-348-7111

Baldwin Area is on the edge with some lakes with safe ice.

Leroy reports good ice with pike and panfish biting Call Eyes Haveit

Mio has ice and Jig’s Up Bait Shop report a few getting out on Mio Pond Call (989) 826-3467

Lewiston Report that west Twin has good ice and perch and a few walleyes are being caught. Call Midlakes Party @ (989) 786-3227 for latest info

Black Bass Bay has been fair on Grand Lake Call Adrian’s Sport for the latest ice update @ (989) 734-2303

Mancelona Sports reports many small lakes in the area are froze and safe with Lake Bellaire going over a couple days age.

FISHING CONDITIONS ON LAKES CADILLAC AND MITCHELL
FROM PILGRIM VILLAGE FISHING SHOP
call for the latest info. 231-775-5412

We’re back on the ice!

The cold nights have made all the difference. Anglers have returned to the coves on Mitchell, the Spear Colony at Thirsty’s and Kenwood Park on Cadillac.

Good catches of crappie, gills, some perch and large pike are common. Even the walleye have been hungry.

The Big Question – How much ice? Four to 8 inches with an inch of snow cover depending on where you are.

Spud your way. Take nothing for granted. There’s a lot of places we haven’t been. I was there this afternoon and lots of guys fishing Mitchell

dans report

Dan’s Resort reports the perch and walleye are really Here’s proof the walleye are biting. 8.5-pounder — at Dan’s Resort.call Dans @ (906) 647-8753 or 906-647-8120

Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Ice fishing has been put on hold until ice conditions improve.

Oscoda: Few anglers have been out however pier anglers may still find the occasional steelhead or walleye.

Au Sable River: Anglers are still getting some steelhead throughout the river system. Boat and shore anglers are using spawn or a jig and wax worm. No word on walleye, they seem to be gone.

Higgins Lake: Had open water, no ice. Boat anglers were still heading out and targeting whitefish and lake trout.

Houghton Lake: As of this report, the ice was no longer safe. With the return of cold weather, the ice might shore back up by the end of the week. Those heading out will need to use extreme caution. Before the big thaw, walleye anglers were doing very well.

Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

The inland lakes still had ice but it was deteriorating with the extremely warm weather. Anyone venturing out now needs to use extreme caution. Shoreline ice was thin and some reported water running down the holes which will only weaken the ice more. Much colder air by the end of the week should restart the freezing process. On Lake Michigan, a couple boats were out trolling along the shoreline and in the harbors. They caught steelhead, brown trout and a couple small chinook salmon.

Frankfort: Surf and pier anglers are still getting a few fish.

Betsie River: Steelhead fishing is still viable, although few are doing it. Reports have not been great but fish are being caught.

Lake Cadillac: Still had ice however it was deteriorating. Anglers need to use extreme caution until colder weather has a chance to shore the ice back up. Be sure to use a spud to check the ice in front of you. Those that have been out reported good fishing.

Lake Mitchell: Still had some ice however it was melting. Extreme caution needs to used. Those jigging or using tip-ups have caught fish.

Lake Missaukee: Is producing some pike and walleye.

Manistee: Pier anglers and those surfcasting are getting a few fish.

Manistee River: Steelhead are still available in both the Big and Little Manistee even though it has not been a banner fall run. Try spawn, wax worms or plugs.

Ludington: Surf and pier anglers are still getting a few fish.

Upper Peninsula Fishing Report

In the northern sections, the recent warm weather did weaken the ice. Heavy snow added weight and caused ponding on the surface. Anglers are reminded to use extreme caution and don’t forget the traditional safety gear such as a spud, ice pics, a throwable flotation device, a rope and the buddy-system.

Anglers in the eastern half of the Upper Peninsula were ice fishing on the inland lakes however no sleds were heading out, foot traffic only. Lakes around Newbery with yellow perch and panfish are being targeted. The next couple weeks are showing temperatures that will slowly improve ice conditions.

Portage Lake: In Houghton County was producing a good number of walleye and pike.

Lake Gogebic: Was also producing a good number of walleye and pike. Anglers are jigging and using tip-ups.

Little Bay De Noc: Had enough ice north of Gladstone that anglers were traveling on ORV’s and snowmobiles. The warmer weather and rain made conditions sloppy. Anglers have been fishing for yellow perch in the Butler Island area and walleye in the central and northern parts of the Bay including the First, Second and Center Reefs. There was some ice but more open water south of Gladstone.

Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake Erie: The only reports were a few decent perch caught in the Metro Park Marina.

Huron River: Anglers are still catching steelhead. Shore anglers are floating jigs with wax worms and boat anglers were back bouncing with Hot-n-Tots.

Detroit River: Anglers were going out but no reports were coming in. Those heading out are usually targeting walleye or perch. Muskie season is closed.

Lake St. Clair: Had no fishable ice anywhere. Much colder temperatures should start producing ice by the weekend. Muskie season closed on December 15th.

St. Clair River: Muskie season is closed. Shore anglers fishing off the wall at Port Huron were still picking up some steelhead and the occasional brown trout.

Saginaw Bay: If the weather allows, boat anglers may find some fish when trolling or drifting.

Saginaw River: Anglers caught walleye at Bay City when casting from shore. Lots of small ones but anglers did take home some keepers.

Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

The lakes in Southwest Michigan had open water. Any ice out there would not be safe. Thanks to the rain and above normal temperatures, it is going to be a while before anglers here are ice fishing.

St. Joseph River: Has steelhead in the system but the numbers are slightly below average. The better fishing is usually below Berrien Springs. Try spawn, wax worms or plugs.

Kalamazoo River: Is still producing some steelhead. Like the St. Joseph, the number of fish is slightly below average this year. The better fishing this time of year is usually below the Allegan Dam.

Grand River near Grand Rapids: Is still producing some steelhead. A few were caught off the wall at the Post Office when using a white jig tipped with a wax worm. Near Fulton Street, anglers were back bouncing with spawn bags. The occasional walleye was caught on bucktail jigs and white twister tails.

Grand River near Lansing: Was still producing some pike and walleye for those fishing below the dams. Shiners seem to work better than sucker minnows. No steelhead to report in Lansing however fish were caught near Portland. Try spawn, beads and small spinners.

Muskegon River: Recent rain should not affect the river too much. Anglers are still catching some steelhead and brown trout. Many are drifting streamers, plugs, small spinners or spoons. Blue and silver were a good color.

Ice Fishing is Great in Northern Michigan

Greg-Sokolowski

We had temps in the single digits last night making more ice for this weekend and many lakes have safe ice.

Northern pike and muskie spearing opened on December 1st for all waters except Designated Trout Lakes, Designated Trout Streams and the Michigan-Wisconsin Boundary Waters.

Small Shallow Lakes around Traverse City have safe ice with many fishing Spider Lake, Arbutus, Ellis Lake, Lake Dubonnet, Long Lake went over but is not safe.

Lake Cadillac and Mitchell are froze with guys taking shanties out, but some are wary with the warm-up this weekend. Call Pilgrims Village for the latest info. 231-775-5412

Houghton Lake has 4 to 8 inches of ice and pike and walleye have been biting. Call Angelo’s Party Store 898-202-4422, Lyman’s on the Lake 989-422-3231, Papa’s Bait 989-429-5780 Four Season Party Store 989-422-5230 and Wright’s 989-202-4531

Lake St. Helen has 4 to 7 inches and pike, walleye, and panfish have been biting. Call Dave @ Malcomb’s Tackle Box 989-389-2100

Lake Missaukee has 4 to 8 inches of ice and most are fishing from Lake City shoreline as Green Rd is iffy. Call Miller’s Corner @ 231-839-0440 for latest info and the fish are biting.

Fife Lake is froze and perch fishing has been fair along with pike call Kathy’s Lakeside Party Store 231-879-4346

Lake Skegemog is froze with 3 to 5 inches of clear black ice and guys will be out on it this weekend Manistee Lake by Kalkaska has 4 to 7 inches of ice and fish ing has been good. Call Jack’s Sport Shop@ 231-258-8892 for the latest ice fishing conditions

Hamlin Lake has ice and guys are fishing it and catching fish but be very careful as you have to pick your way out to the fishing spot as the spring just froze and are noot safe. Call Hamlin Grocery @ 231-843-2058 or Captain Chucks@ 231-843-4458 Craig at Captain Chucks does a lot of fishing on Hamlin Lake but is waiting for thicker ice

Portage Lake is froze with three inches of ice but nobody was fishing Wednesday but after last nights single digits maybe a few have tried. Call Osborn’s @ 231-889-3775 or Dewey @ Don’s Sport Shop 231-735-5028

Otsego Lake has good ice with shanties out on it Call Northern Sports @ 989-448-2014

Lake Margrethe is froze with 3 to 5 inches and good walleye, perch and pike. Call Skip’s Sport Shop @ 989-348-7111

Baldwin Area is on the edge with some lakes with safe ice.

Leroy reports good ice with pike and panfish biting

Mio has ice and Jig’s Up Bait Shop report a few getting out on Mio Pond Call (989) 826-3467

Lewiston Report that west Twin has good ice and perch and a few walleyes are being caught. Call Midlakes Party @ (989) 786-3227

Black Bass Bay has been fair on Grand Lake Call Adrian’s Sport for the latest ice update @ (989) 734-2303

Mancelona Sports reports many small lakes in the area are froze and safe with Lake Bellaire going over a couple days age.

Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Anglers are ice fishing on some lakes. Those heading out are reminded to use extreme caution and be sure to use a spud to check the ice as you go. The rivers are open at fishable levels and have steelhead just not many anglers are fishing for them.

Torch Lake: Those spear fishing did well for whitefish.

Elk River: Was producing steelhead at the dam.

Manistee Lake: In Kalkaska County had ice anglers. Foot travel was best as the ice was not safe for machines. Most of the fish caught were on the small side.

Betsie River: Is producing some steelhead.

Lake Cadillac: Has ice. Anglers have done well when spearing for pike. Try jigs and wax worms for panfish. Bring your cleats and be sure to check the ice first.

Lake Mitchell: Ice fishing has started. Those heading out caught mostly small pike and panfish. The ice had no snow so be sure to bring your cleats.

Lake Missaukee: Ice fishing has started but not all the ice is safe. Most anglers were seen on the northeast side of the lake.

Manistee River: Water levels were fishable once again. The river still has a good number of steelhead and other trout.

Ludington: Pier and surf anglers were still catching steelhead.

Pere Marquette River: Water levels were good and the river still has a fair to good number of steelhead.

Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Grand Lake: Ice anglers were fishing in the shallow bays only.

Long Lake: Also had ice anglers fishing in the shallow bays.

Thunder Bay River: The number of fish has dropped but anglers were still taking a couple steelhead up near the 9th Street Dam.

Otsego Lake: Ice anglers were fishing in shallow waters along the shoreline.

Oscoda: Pier anglers fishing at night were still picking up some whitefish and the occasional walleye.

Au Sable River: So far, the launch ramps are fine and steelhead are being caught. Water temperatures were in the mid 30’s. The forecast for the weekend looks to be very good for river fishing but it might be a good idea to pack some rock salt or sand just in case the ramps ice up.

Lake Margrethe: Ice fishing is underway however anglers need to use caution.

Houghton Lake: Ice anglers can be found off Harvey’s Marina in the East Bay. The ice is clear with no snow so be sure to bring cleats for easier travel. Some are using tip-ups while others are jigging. For walleye, try blues and perch minnows and for pike use anything that has some flash to it.

Upper Peninsula Fishing Report

Ice was forming on the inland lakes but snow will slow the freezing process. Those anxious to get out and start fishing need to use extreme caution and avoid the deeper lakes.

Little Bay De Noc: Commercial vessel traffic will be utilizing the port of Gladstone beginning Saturday, December 13th and are expected to transit into and out of Little Bay De Noc through December 18th. Recreational users of the ice should plan their activity carefully, use caution, and stay away from the shipping channels and other areas where there is vessel traffic. Ice anglers were fishing above Saunders Point. They caught a few perch, walleye and pike. Anglers need to use caution and watch for pressure cracks with open water.

Indian Lake: In Schoolcraft County was producing some perch and walleye.

Manistique Lake: A few ice anglers were starting to venture out however it is still early and ice conditions need to be checked carefully.

Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake Erie: Perch anglers were fishing off the docks at the Metro Park Marina.

Huron River: Is still producing steelhead. Some boat anglers are back trolling with Hot-n-Tots.

Detroit River: Had a few boat anglers perch fishing near the Cross Dike.

Lake St. Clair: Has open water for the most part. There was a little skim ice in the canals and some of the marinas but nothing close to fishable. There has been a lot of muskie fishing activity over the last week as water clarity has improved. Muskie season closes on December 15th however the end of the season is usually when the biggest fish of the year are caught.

St. Clair River: Shore anglers have caught steelhead and brown trout off the wall at Port Huron. A few whitefish were also mixed in. With the warmer temperatures, there are no ice flows coming down the river so fishing conditions are good.

Saginaw Bay: Had some anglers fishing the first ice near shore however anglers be warned, the ice is not very thick.

Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

No safe ice in southern Michigan, in fact, most of the lakes have opened back up. Steelhead fishing was just alright on rivers in the area.

St. Joseph River: Steelhead fishing was fair with most anglers picking up one or two fish per trip. Water levels were still a bit high.

Black River: Was producing some steelhead and a few brown trout.

Kalamazoo River: Steelhead fishing was fair with anglers usually getting a couple fish per trip. Water levels are still coming down and have started to clear up. Try drifting spawn and wax worms or casting crank baits and plugs.

Grand River near Grand Rapids: Is still producing some steelhead. Some days are better than others.

Grand River near Lansing: Pike and walleye anglers can be found near the dams. Most are using live bait such as sucker minnows. A few reports came in regarding steelhead at Portland. Try floating a jig with spawn, minnows or crawlers.

Muskegon: Piers anglers caught whitefish when jigging a single egg.

Muskegon Lake: Was also producing a few whitefish for those fishing at night.

Muskegon River: The higher waters levels did bring fresh steelhead into the river system. Those fly fishing have done well with egg patterns. Anglers are catching steelhead, some brown trout and even the occasional lake trout.

We Were Almost Ice Fishing

iceboat

A few danced on the ice last week on some of the shallow lakes, Houghton Lake, Wixom Lake Coves, a cove or two on Mitchell, and canals on Manistee Lake near Kalkaska.

Maybe next week things will start as cold weather returning.

There are new owners at Lyman’s on The Lake so stop in and say hello to Kurt, they will have ice shanty rentals this year along with Angelo’s Party Store on Houghton Lake.

Dancing-Bears

Michigan Fishing Report

girl with fish she caught out of lake cadillac
nice catch

Last week-end the fishing and weather was great on the inland lakes with good perch on Margrethe, Burt Lake, Mullet Lake, Long Lake, by Traverse City, South-end Of Lake Leelanau, Higgins Lake, and some reports of perch on East and West Grand Traverse Bay.

Salmon Fishing has been slow in the rivers but the cold front that came though tuesday and many salmon finally are in the rivers. Big Manistee and Betsie River report fish but numbers are down.

Fishing has been good for crappie on Wixom and Sanford Lake

Baldwin Area the salmon fishing has ben fair with spawn working best

Houghton Lake was great last weekend for panfish and walleye, also Reedsburg Dam has been fair for pike

FISHING CONDITIONS ON LAKES CADILLAC AND MITCHELL

Walleye catches on Lakes Cadillac and Mitchell are improving. Trolling, casting and jigging are all working. Try crawlers or minnows on spinner rigs. Cast crankbaits for suspended fish. Bounce jigs tipped with live bait when they’re tight to the bottom. On the gray days, which are often, they can be caught in as little as five feet. Work the pockets near any green weeds.

Rain, rain. The salmon anglers want all they can get. Cool weather and high water levels is what brings salmon up the rivers to spawn. Many have already traveled the 32 miles to congregate at Tippy Dam on the Manistee River. Fish the gravels runs and deep pools.

The numbers are below expectations from past seasons, but it improves daily as more salmon travel up the river.

Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake trout season on northern Lake Michigan closed on September 30th. The salmon run is nearing its peak in most of the rivers in this region. Inland lakes were producing some decent catches of perch.

Petoskey: Boats are going out and casting inside the breakwall where the salmon are staging. A couple chinook and coho were picked up off the D Pier, the end of the clock dock, inside of the breakwall, and by those wading off the beach near the breakwall. Try spawn, crank baits or spoons. A lot of the salmon are ripe.

Bear River: A few salmon were still up near the dam. A couple small steelhead were also taken between the bridges below the dam. Spawn and artificial eggs worked best. There were reports of few lake trout running up to the dam. Lake trout season is still open in the river.

Charlevoix: The only boats having any luck were going out in the early morning and fishing in shallow waters 20 to 45 feet deep around the Cement Plant. Some fish are staging in the shallow waters 15 to 25 feet deep in front of Medusa Creek. Some are still catching some nice smallmouth bass when using crawlers or soft plastics on the bottom. Shore fishing in the slip slowed to a stop. All we need is some rain and windy conditions to get the fish moving again.

Traverse City: Lake trout season in both bays closed on September 30th. Those fishing the East Bay caught a few salmon when trolling 50 to 70 feet down. Smallmouth bass fishing was fair near the drop-offs. In the West Bay, salmon fishing was slow. Anglers are marking a decent number of fish but the bite was not there. Smallmouth bass anglers reported fair catches on brown and green tube baits in 8 to 25 feet.

Elk River: A few salmon have been caught on spawn near the power dam.

Boardman River: Salmon and the occasional lake trout have been caught by those drifting skein under a bobber.

Platte River: Fishing activity has increased. Those fishing the upper stretch reported slow catches when fish are allowed to pass through the lower weir. The gate on the lower weir access road is closed at 8pm every night with no exceptions. Some fish were caught by those trolling in Loon Lake and Big Lake.

Betsie River: Has a good number of salmon, many of which are actively spawning. Anglers on the lower river are still catching adult kings on skein under a bobber and stickbaits.

Manistee: Those able to fish offshore caught young chinook up to 12 pounds. Steelhead were caught on spoons in the top 50 to 80 feet in 150 to 300 feet. Green and orange spoons were best but a few were also caught on green flies or meat rigs. Pier fishing was slow.

Manistee River: Has a good number of chinook and a few coho. The salmon run is nearing its peak as a good number of fish are actively spawning.

Ludington: Boats are catching decent numbers of young chinook, coho and steelhead. The best action was in the top 70 feet of waters 100 to 250 feet deep with orange or green spoons. No salmon for pier anglers.

Pere Marquette River: Is producing salmon but the run is nearing the end. Try floating skein under a bobber or casting stickbaits and small spoons.

Pentwater: Anglers found steelhead and coho in the shallows between the pier and the dunes. Those fishing 150 to 200 feet caught good numbers of steelhead in the top 50 feet and some nice coho. Try blue rotators and meat rigs, fireball orange lures or glow lures early and late.

Upper Peninsula Fishing Report

Ontonagon: Fishing is good. Lake trout are showing up out in 50 to 60 feet and were caught throughout the water column. Good colors were green, silver, orange and yellow. Salmon fishing was slow.

Keweenaw Bay: The bite was slow but a few chinook, coho and lake trout were caught by those willing to put in a lot of time while trolling spoons in 30 to 50 feet. Most were trolling the head of the bay, along the L’Anse and Baraga shoreline, up to Carla’s Restaurant and near Pequaming. Some coho were caught in the Falls River near L’Anse and at the head of the bay at the bridge. For the South Portage Entry, the bite was hit-or-miss. On the good days, anglers caught lake trout in 40 to 80 feet at Big, Newton’s and Farmers Reef. For Traverse Bay, fish were caught on Buffalo Reef or 5, 6 and 7 Reefs which are part of Big Reef.

Lake Antoine: Had more anglers out targeting panfish and they did well. Some nice bluegills and yellow perch were caught by those drifting or still-fishing with crawlers. Sunfish and rock bass were also caught. The fish were in close to shore. Bass were hitting on crank baits, rubber worms or crayfish when casting or trolling.

Marquette: Boat anglers did best when targeting lake trout. A few limit catches were reported but the bite did fluctuate. A few fish were caught near Granite Island and Granite Loma Farms in 120 to 150 feet. No salmon to report. Those fishing towards Shot Point and the Sand River caught brown trout and a couple coho with high-lines in 130 feet. Good colors were watermelon, silver and purple. Some were trolling from the mouth of the Carp River to the mouth of the Chocolay River but catch rates were poor.

Dead River: Had low angler pressure and poor catch rates. Water levels have dropped and flow from the power plant was lower. No chinook or pink salmon were spotted in the river.

Carp River: Had a few shore anglers but catch rates were poor. Watch for trucks coming to or leaving the construction area.

Chocolay River: Shore and boat anglers launching from the marina reported a slight increase in catch rates but still slow. Many are frustrated with the lack of coho being caught. No real pattern as far as baits or lures. Some caught fish on crawlers or spawn bags while others used small spinners in orange or chartreuse. A few nice brown trout were caught.

Little Bay De Noc: Had fair walleye catches along the “Black Bottom”, Second Reef and Center Reef in 10 to 24 feet. Fair to good perch off the mouth of the Day’s River in 10 to 12 feet with minnows. Several pike were caught in the Escanaba Yacht Harbor when trolling spoons, crank baits or buck tails along the channel. Salmon anglers are fishing the rivers but high water makes it difficult to spot fish.

Escanaba River: For walleye, the mouth was best when trolling or drifting crawler harnesses in 12 to 20 feet. Anglers did well near the 1st Dam when casting spoons, plugs or crank baits.

Big Bay De Noc: Smallmouth anglers had fair catches off Garden Bluff and Snake Island. Water depths varied day to day. Some trolled but most were drifting or casting tube baits or minnows in 14 to 30 feet along the break. Fair perch fishing around Ansell’s Point and just inside the mouth of Garden Bay. Minnows worked best in 18 to 25 feet. No walleye reports.

Au Train: Lake trout anglers did well averaging five to ten fish from the Shelter Bay Flats. Most were caught right on the bottom in 130 to 160 feet. Those fishing towards Wood Island had fair success in 140 to 160 feet with spoons. Some are tipping them with sucker meat. Most fish averaged 3 to 4 pounds but a couple tipped the scales and were between 10 and 22 pounds. No chinook or coho to report. Those shore fishing at the Rock River caught one or two small coho.

Manistique River: Salmon were starting to run.

Big Manistique Lake: Was producing perch and walleye.

St. Mary’s River: Waters at the Clover Land Power Plant are still producing 4 to 7 pound Atlantic salmon. Anglers are drifting shallow running crank baits in 4 to 6 feet on the discharge side. Pink salmon are still being caught but the numbers are starting to decline. Perch were caught in the bays off Lake Nicolet. Try just off the weeds in 6 to 8 feet. In Lake George, try half a crawler in 8 to 10 feet. Raber Bay was slow for walleye. Fair pike action for those trolling chrome spoons with a red eye near Carlton Creek. Yellow perch were caught around James Island, off Maxton Bay, Scott Bay, Howard Island and Boulanger Island when using a pinch of crawler or minnows. Good pike action along the southeast side of Grape Island.

Detour: Those heading out are harvesting chinook, coho and pink salmon when trolling. Hot colors were orange, yellow, green and gold, red or pink.

Cedarville and Hessel: Perch fishing is fair in Middle Entrance, Musky Bay and off the pier in Hessel. Northern pike are hitting at the drop-off along the north shore of Government Bay. Try 8 to 15 feet with chubs.

Carp River: Anglers are spotting fresh fish but getting them to hit has been difficult. A limited number of pink and chinook salmon were caught on fresh spawn bags or spinners in yellow, green and gold, orange, pink or red.

Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Anglers are reminded that lake trout and splake season on the waters of Lake Huron closed on September 30th.

Rogers City: Had good catches but lake trout season is now closed. Anglers saw lots of baitfish in the area and are hoping they will draw in the younger chinook and steelhead. Those fishing high in the water column caught a couple steelhead with 5 color leadcore and orange spoons. The younger chinook salmon have not really shown up in any numbers yet which proves there is still plenty of fishing left.

Alpena: Had great fishing. Anglers caught a mix of trout, salmon and walleye out towards North Point and Thunder Bay Island. Target all depths and run lines throughout the water column. Spoons were the ticket and the hot colors were green, blue, black and white or glow early and late. Steelhead were caught up high on orange spoons.

Thunder Bay River: Has a few salmon but anglers had little success getting them to hit. Catch rates should improve once the water cools. Look for Atlantic salmon to show up soon.

Harrisville: Is finally showing signs of salmon in the area. Fish are jumping in the harbor but getting them to hit has not been easy. Spawn, spoons and body baits have produced catches while trolling and casting around the harbor. Steelhead did move in closer to shore but were in and out of the harbor. Walleye seem to be the most plentiful in the area. Anglers are doing well north, south and in front of the harbor in 12 to 30 feet with crawler harnesses and body baits.

Oscoda: Salmon are starting to show up at the pier and the fish are fresh from the lake. Spoons, stick baits, flies and spawn are working well. Steelhead are also coming in and were caught from the pier, in the river and just outside the piers. Those trolling on the lake are using spoons. Walleye were caught off the pier.

Au Sable River: Is producing some steelhead and walleye. Anglers are casting body baits or drifting crawlers. Anglers reported a good number of trout on the South Branch.

Higgins Lake: The perch and rock bass fishing slowed.

Houghton Lake: Had some walleye and panfish. Try crawlers and leeches along the edge of the weeds in 8 to 10 feet.

Tawas: Pier fishing was slow with only a few smallmouth bass and small perch taken. Some perch were caught in 15 to 20 feet off Jerry’s Marina but catch rates were still hit-or-miss and anglers had to do a lot of sorting.

Tawas River: Is giving up a few salmon in the early morning.

Au Gres: Perch fishing was spotty but some large fish 11 to 12 inches were caught. One hot spot was straight off the mouth of the river in 40 to 50 feet however boat anglers heading out of Eagle Bay Marina and fishing off the Saganing Bar did a little better. A few bass anglers fishing in 10 to 15 feet off the mouth of the river caught and released a good number rather large smallmouth bass.

Au Gres River: A couple steelhead were caught by those floating spawn bags at the Singing Bridge but catch rates were still pretty slow.

Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake Erie: Perch fishing was good but the warm weather did slow the bite. The better fishing continues straight out from Stony Point in 24 to 26 feet. The fish are moving in slightly when the water cools and back out deeper by midday. The bite has been light and the fish are near the bottom especially where there are rocks. A small number of bigger fish were caught off the beach at Sterling State Park in 14 to 16 feet. Both large and small fish were taken near the E-Buoy, Turtle Island and the Raisin River Buoys 1 & 2. Anglers are still waiting for the walleye to move back into Michigan waters.

Huron River: Anglers are catching a steelhead or two near Labo Park.

Detroit River: Had good perch fishing around the islands. Walleye were still being caught on the front side of Sugar Island and near the Edison Plant. Most anglers were hand-lining.

Washtenaw County: Ford Lake was producing some bluegills. Devils Lake was producing a few crappies and some northern pike.

Portage Chain-of-Lakes: Bluegill fishing remains good. Anglers are doing well on the north end of Big Portage in 10 to 20 feet. Crickets and crawlers under a bobber worked best. Those getting limit catches were still sorting out the small ones. Bass fishing was hit-or-miss along the shallow flats. Pike fishing gets better as the water temperatures drop. Anglers trolling hard body crank baits are doing well on Strawberry and Portage Lakes. Try fire-tiger or white.

Lake St. Clair: Floating weeds have made it difficult for those out trolling for muskie but some nice fish have been caught. Good areas to try include the Dumping Grounds and along the shipping channel. Anglers reported good bass fishing in 12 to 15 feet. Perch fishing is improving with some decent catches taken along the Dumping Grounds and the shipping channel off Grosse Pointe. Look for perch and smallmouth bass to move into the shallows as water temperatures drop.

St. Clair River: The best walleye reports continue to come from the Bluewater Bridge area. Those trolling or jigging have taken limit catches after dark. Walleye fishing in the lower river continues to be slow. Sturgeon fishing was good but the harvest season closed on September 30th. The catch-and-release season continues until the end of November. Sturgeon anglers caught some big channel cats.

Lexington & Port Sanilac: Those trolling were taking a good number of steelhead in the top 30 feet of waters 50 to 80 feet deep. Some were caught in over 100 feet but there is no need to go out that far. Pier anglers were catching a few walleye, pike, small perch and one chinook salmon. Lake trout fishing is closed.

Harbor Beach: Is producing steelhead and the odd walleye. Steelhead were hitting on orange and black spoons about 25 feet down in 80 to 90 feet. Pier anglers fishing the north gap were starting to get the odd steelhead or walleye in the evening. Brown trout were surfacing in the harbor but would not bite. Lake trout fishing is closed.

Port Austin: A few walleye were caught on spoons in 55 feet around the lighthouse and the Green Can. A few bass and perch were taken inside the harbor.

Saginaw Bay: Fair to good perch reports in 10 to 15 feet around the Saganing Bar and the Pinconning Bar but anglers were doing a lot of sorting. Fish were caught west of Buoy 16 and the Spark Plug, off Linwood in 14 feet, near the sailboat buoys off Linwood and in 8 to 10 feet and near the mouth of the Quanicassee River. On any given day, you may have to move around to find an active school of fish. Boats were staying out several hours. A few walleye were caught in 7 feet off the Hot Pond and by those trolling Hot-n-Tots behind Spoils Island. Channel catfish were caught in the Hot Pond and smallmouth bass were taken in the marina basins at the mouth of the Saginaw River.

Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

The inland lakes are producing bluegill, perch and pike.

St. Joseph: Had good perch fishing with most anglers targeting 30 to 35 feet. Salmon anglers also had good success taking a mixed bag of trout and salmon in waters 150 feet or deeper. Pier fishing was slow.

St. Joseph River: Has a decent number of chinook and coho based on fish passage at the ladders but angler activity was light.

South Haven: Also had good perch fishing in 30 to 35 feet and good salmon fishing in 120 feet. Most of the salmon were caught on spoons. Pier fishing was slow.

Kalamazoo River: A few coho and steelhead are being caught below the Allegan Dam.

Grand Haven: Steelhead and chinook salmon were caught 30 to 80 feet down in 120 to 200 feet. Use spoons high or a spinnie/fly combo down low. Hot colors were green for spoons and flies and white for spinnies and paddles. Meat rigs also caught fish, try yellow and white with spots. Pier action was slow for salmon and steelhead. Anglers were using alewife or spawn.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Has a good run of coho. Anglers are doing well in Grand Rapids and Lyons.

Grand River near Lansing: Has reports of salmon up at the Webber Dam and even some at Moore’s Park and the North Lansing Dam.

Muskegon: Chinook and steelhead were taken by those trolling in 120 to 220 feet with spoons or a spin/fly combo. Meat rigs also caught fish.

Muskegon River: Has salmon and some steelhead for the taking. Try casting small spoons and spinners or drifting spawn bags.

Whitehall: Seems to still have a fair number of fresh chinook salmon in 60 to 80 feet. Boat anglers fishing the shallows ran into fresh salmon a couple miles to the north. Pier anglers are still catching a few fish. Northern pike were caught off the channel.