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.

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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


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
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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.