Weekly DNR Fishing Report

Southeast Lower Peninsula

Lake Erie – Perch fishing has been good in 26 feet of water near the Fermi Power Plant and Stony Point. The bigger perch can be found in 15 feet of water but catch rates were slower. Bass fishing has continues to be good in the weeds along the shoreline. Walleye anglers are still waiting for catch rates to pick up.

Huron River – Cooler weather has turned up the steelhead fishing. Anglers caught fish when casting spawn and drifting flies or a jig and wax worm. A few chinook were caught. Check out the backwaters for big bluegills hitting on wax worms.

Detroit River – Perch are still being caught with limit catches reported.

Saginaw Bay – Fair to good perch action near Buoys 4, 5, and 22. Good catches of 8 to 12 inch perch off Quanicassee when fishing anywhere from the last buoys at the end of the navigation channel to about 8 feet of water two miles out. North of Caseville, perch fishing was good off Oak Point in the 50 foot hole.

Saginaw River – Some perch are being taken in the lower river at Smith Park in Essexville and also an occasional walleye on a perch rig.

Sebewaing River – Small perch, some crappies and sunfish are being taken in the river and marina.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

St. Joe – Boat anglers are catching salmon and trout while trolling in 120 to 160 feet of water. Perch have been caught when still-fishing just off the bottom in 60 feet of water.

St. Joe River – Salmon action has slowed around Benton Harbor and Berrien Springs however anglers may still find some fish between Niles and South Bend. Steelhead are slowly moving up into the river as a few fish were taken on spawn up near Pipestone Creek. Catch rates should only improve.

Paw Paw River – Anglers are still taking a few coho.

Kalamazoo River – The salmon run is pretty much over except for a few leftover fish. Steelhead are moving in and the action should only get better in the next week or so.

Grand Haven – Chinook and steelhead are being taken in waters 190 to 240 feet deep. The steelhead can be found in the top half of the water column so spring fishing techniques are best. Good colors are red and orange. Pier fishing is slow. Perch are biting out from the State Park and to the south.

Grand River at Grand Rapids – Good numbers of steelhead are being caught on spawn up near the dam. Those using jigs and wax worms or Wobble Glo’s are taking fish in the deep holes and in the center run. Walleye have been caught by those casting small body baits, drifting crawler harnesses or hair jigs tipped with half a crawler. Pike are still hitting on sucker minnows, body baits or white spinner baits. Some nice 10 to 13 inch perch have been caught at Riverside Park.

Grand River at Lansing – About the only action right now is for resident fish. Those lucky enough have caught a few big catfish or carp. Anglers are now waiting to see if the steelhead will make it up this far.

Reeds Lake – Crappie action is good and jumbo perch are hitting on minnows.

Muskegon – Those trolling are catching steelhead and chinook in 190 to 270 feet of water. Most fish were taken in 240 feet of water. Perch fishing is good north of the piers and in front of the State Park.

Muskegon River – Steelhead continue to move into the river as the salmon runs are pretty much done.

Norhtern Lower Peninsula

Rogers City – Not much success to report other than a few browns and salmon can be seen swimming around the harbor. No luck in catching them. The launch ramps are still in but few boats have been out. The salmon run is about over with just a few adult stragglers left.

Presque Isle – Catch rates have slowed with few salmon in and around the harbor.

Alpena – Perch have been taken from the docks in the marina.

Thunder Bay River – Anglers are catching salmon at the Ninth Street Dam on natural and artificial spawn as well as rapalas. The salmon are dark and in bad shape. Steelhead are moving up into the river so try spawn up near the dam. Perch can be found near the marina and behind Jepetto’s.

Harrisville – Fishing has picked up in the harbor and just outside the wall. Most fish are being caught on J-plugs and jointed rapalas. A few walleye have been caught outside the harbor in and around 25 feet of mainly on body baits.

Au Sable River – Most of the fish up in the river have turned dark. A number of steelhead are up in the river but few anglers are targeting them. Walleye seem to be back in the river with reports of 3.5 to 4.5 pound fish taken near the mouth.

Tawas – Many small perch are being caught off the pier. Anglers will need to sort through their catch to pick out the big ones. A couple walleye and steelhead were also caught off the pier.

Tawas River – Is still producing a few salmon and the steelhead have moved in.

Au Gres – Some nice catches of perch along the shipping channel in 36 to 40 feet of water. Those fishing near the Singing Bridge have caught steelhead in the surf when casting spoons or drifting spawn.

Higgins Lake – Boats continue to troll for lake trout in 80 top 100 feet of water. Perch are still out there for those willing to put in the time to find them.

Houghton Lake – Catch rates have been slow with only a few crappie taken and some pike hitting on sucker minnows.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Petoskey – The salmon runs are over and fishing has slowed. No reports of steelhead yet.

Charlevoix – Fishing has slowed. The salmon runs have fizzled and most of the fish are rapidly deteriorating. No perch or steelhead to report.

Elk Lake – Fishing pressure for smallmouth bass has dropped over the last week. Those that are out have been fishing from the Narrows to Rex Terrace in depths ranging from 2 to 15 feet using tubes, spinners, sinkos, and crank baits. More are trolling for muskie with large stick baits in 15 to 30 feet of water from the DNR access site to Kewadin and up to Spencer Bay. Only small perch have been caught.

Skegemog Lake – Bass anglers are casting in shallow waters near the mouth of the Torch River and along the weed beds in the southeast margins of the lake. Try 3 to 7 feet of water with jigs, spinners and crank baits. Muskie anglers are trolling in 4 to 20 feet of water with large stick baits. Some are drifting the flats for pike when using spinners or Hot-n-Tots. Bass have been caught in the shallows and perch are hitting on minnows and crawlers in 8 to 18 feet of water.

Boardman River – Fishing has slowed with only a few decent salmon still in the river. Light numbers of steelhead have started to show up.

Frankfort – Steelhead are being caught off the piers and the beach but weeds inside the harbor have made fishing difficult. Boats are trolling in 130 to 150 feet of water from the piers up to Point Betsie for chinook, coho, and steelhead. The Herring Hole has been slow, but a few larger chinook were caught trolling in front of the creek. Try spoons and flies 40 to 65 feet down.

Portage Lake – Anglers trolling for pike during the day are catching fish along the drop offs and weed edges on red and orange spoons. Walleye were caught when trolling near the channel at night. Decent catches of panfish with some jumbo perch mixed in have been caught in deep water in front of the boat launch on wax worms, crawlers and minnows.

Manistee – Steelhead and salmon are being taken while fishing the Shelf in the top 40 feet of water. Orange spoons are working best. Pier and shore anglers caught steelhead on spawn.

Manistee River – Salmon fishing has ended but anglers have started to catch steelhead. We need rain to get the fish moving.

Ludington – Boat anglers are catching salmon and steelhead in the top 50 feet of water fishing 80 to 160 feet deep on orange spoons. Pier anglers are catching a few steelhead on fresh spawn.

Pere Marquette River – Salmon fishing here is pretty much done as the steelhead have started to move into the river.


Keweenaw Bay – Fishing has slowed. A couple coho were taken from the Fall’s River and the Head of the Bay. Traverse Bay had good action trolling for lake trout in waters 30 to 120 feet deep near Gay Point and Buffalo Reef. Anglers also caught brown and rainbow trout.

Menominee River – Anglers wading near Stephenson Island and Hattie Street Dam were having some success with chinook, browns and steelhead. Fishing is best in the very early hours. Bright colored spoons, cleos, stick baits, spawn and a hook with yarn are all working well. Walleye action was slow.

Cedar River – Smallmouth bass have been caught on crawlers or crank baits but the fish were small. Walleye have been caught when trolling in 20 to 40 feet of water at night. Bottom bouncers and crawler harnesses worked best. No reports of salmon being caught this week. A few surfaces but high winds and shallow waters before the rapids slowed fishing.

Little Bay De Noc – Walleye catch rates were down with the best efforts along the reef in Kipling when trolling and jigging crawlers in 10 to 25 feet of water. Excellent smallmouth catches reported at the mouth of the Escanaba Yacht Harbor when jigging or drifting minnows on the drop. Pike fishing was good and perch were caught off Butler Island when jigging minnows in 10 to 23 feet of water.

Big Bay De Noc – Still good smallmouth catches reported in the Snake Island area while trolling or drifting minnows in 15 to 30 feet of water. Walleye action is slow.

Munising – Fishing has slowed and the salmon run is just about over. Anglers are still catching a few coho, splake and steelhead.

Grand Marais – When the wind permits, steelhead and coho are being picked up by those trolling spoons or surf casting spawn sacks near the mouth of the Sucker River.

Big Manistique Lake – Perch were biting good, but lots of little ones to sort through. Walleye were active in the evenings and mid-day.

DeTour – Pike anglers are trolling and casting firetiger body baits near Maud Bay and Sweets Point. Drummond Island is producing some nice yellow perch around Ashman Island and Scott Bay in 4 to10 feet of water using minnows.

Cedarville & Hessel – Northern pike fishing is good all through the Les Cheneaux Islands with anglers trolling or casting. Smallmouth bass should be hitting on the rocky points, but no anglers are targeting them. Perch fishing has picked up in the east end of Cedarville Bay and in Government Bay. Anglers are fishing in 4 to 14 feet of water with minnows or crawlers.

Bush Creek – Which is east of Cedarville is open year round and is producing a fair number of salmon.

Carp River – Has fair chinook action when still-fishing or casting with spawn from the mouth upstream to McDonalds Rapids. Some nice steelhead were caught at the mouth when using chrome Cleo’s.

St. Ignace – Anglers are casting from the docks at the City Launch for chinook. Early morning or late evening are best.

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