Archive for the ‘Fishing Reports’ Category

Michigan DNR Report for Jan. 21st

Thursday, January 21st, 2010

This warmer weather makes ice fishing a lot more comfortable however it is important that anglers use extreme caution and pay close attention to changing ice conditions. There have been numerous accidents on Saginaw Bay over the last week. To be safe, anglers are advised to fish in shallow waters only. Remember, use the buddy system, tell someone where you are going and when you plan to return, check the ice in front of you with a spud, take a cell phone and wear a life jacket. Those heading out should travel by foot only, no motorized vehicles should be going out on the ice. Ice on the inland lakes seems to be holding up better but catch rates were on the slow side.

Southeast Lower Peninsula

Lake Erie - Walleye are still hitting in Brest Bay. Most are using minnows, rapalas or small spoons. The various marinas were providing some good panfish action with perch, crappie and bluegills being caught.

Huron River - Is still providing the opportunity to catch a couple steelhead.

Detroit River - Those fishing in Airport Bay continue to catch a few yellow perch in the 10 to 14 inch range.

Lexington - Ice anglers caught a few small perch. Small brown trout and even some steelhead were also caught.

Saginaw Bay - Anglers are warned to be very careful of changing ice conditions! Extreme caution needs to be used. The pressure cracks are extremely dangerous at this time so anglers should avoid those areas. Two anglers drowned since last Friday, and in both cases they were riding ATV’s, got onto thin, newly frozen ice, and broke through. There are a lot of pressure cracks out there, and if you’re riding an ATV or snowmobile, you can come upon a crack or thin ice before you have time to stop. Ice conditions were not great before the recent thaw, and now they are worse. Stay away from the mouth of rivers, creeks and drains because the recent thaw has increased runoff which in turn has eroded the ice in those areas. Local Sheriff Departments have been calling for people to stay off the ice. It would be wise to fish in shallow waters only and stay close to shore. Those wading open waters in the channel near the Hot Ponds caught walleye and pike. Many were small. Perch fishing was slow in the shallow waters between Sebewaing and Mud Creek. Walleye anglers were not fishing this area because the ice was not safe outside the islands.

Saginaw River - Did not have much activity with the poor ice conditions around Saginaw and Zilwaukee. The ice continues to deteriorate on the river.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

Gun Lake - Had good yellow perch fishing.

Gull Lake - Pike fishing has been good in the South Bay.

Crooked Lake - In Barry County had fair to good bluegill fishing but anglers will need to sort out the small ones.

Grand River at Grand Rapids - Has good walleye action off the Fulton Street Bridge and when trolling rapalas up and down the river between 8pm and midnight. For steelhead, try 3 eggs in a bag with a chartreuse floater.

Grand River at Lansing - Ice on the river is questionable and should be avoided.

Lake Lansing - A lot of pike were caught on tip-ups however many were small.

Lake Ovid - Ice anglers were catching small bluegills only.

Reeds Lake - Crappie were caught on minnows and wax worms 20 to 32 feet down in waters 40 feet deep. Yellow perch were hitting on wigglers, spikes and minnows on the bottom in 30 to 40 feet of water. Bluegills were hitting on minnows, spikes or wax worms. Large pike were caught 4 to 10 feet off the bottom in waters 20 to 40 feet deep.

Muskegon Lake - Anglers should stay away from open water in the channel that leads to Lake Michigan. Pike have been caught in the middle sections of the lake. Those fishing off Hartshorn Marina were using tip-ups with golden shiners. Perch were caught on the bottom in 45 to 60 feet of water. Try minnows, wigglers, mousies or spikes. Bluegills were caught in 3 feet of water off the North State Park.

Muskegon River - Steelhead fishing picked up in the upper stretches where anglers have caught fish between Bridgeton and Newaygo. Spawn worked best.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Mullet Lake - Anglers were targeting perch in 12 to 40 feet of water. Of those caught, most were 5 to 8 inches and only a few topped 10 inches. Anglers are mainly staying close to shore. The middle portion of the lake has not been fished due to questionable ice conditions.

Higgins Lake - Smelt have been caught about 10 feet off the bottom in waters 30 to 50 feet deep. Perch can be found in 15 to 20 feet of water, sort out the small ones. Lake trout and good numbers of whitefish have been caught along the drop-off near deep water. Rainbow trout can still be found near the mouth of Big Creek.

Houghton Lake - Pike are hitting on tip-ups with sucker minnows and walleye are hitting on jigs with minnows. Catch rates for bluegill were sporadic and a few crappie were caught on minnows.

Tawas Bay - Pike spearing has slowed. Perch were hitting in 12 to 20 feet of water however most were small. No walleye to report because the ice where most of the fish were caught was no longer safe.

Au Gres - Ice on the Bay here is not safe. The best action was south of Pt. Au Gres in Wigwam Bay. Anglers are using Hale Road, Palmer Road and Pine River Road for access. Perch anglers are fishing 3 to 5 feet of water. Many were small however some 8 to 10 inch fish were caught. A few walleye were caught out further but anglers will need to use caution and watch for pressure cracks and open water.

Au Gres River - Is producing a lot of sub-legal walleye.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Traverse City - Both the East Bay and the West Bay have open water.

Lake Leelanau - Ice anglers are still taking a few walleye.

Green Lake - Ice anglers are catching smelt but some are small.

Cedar Lake - Pike are hitting on tip-ups and smelt have been caught.

Lake Missaukee - Had fair to good panfish action.

Lake Cadillac - Had fair to good pike fishing.

Lake Mitchell - Is also producing some pike and panfish.

Manistee River - Look for steelhead in the upper stretches near Tippy Dam.

Upper Peninsula

Green Bay - The ice was poor on the Bay this week. Anglers were fishing inside the marina wall only for trout, pike and yellow perch. For trout and pike, anglers were using a rapala with or without minnows. Trout were seen on cameras however only small pike were caught. Yellow perch were caught on small jigs with minnows but many were small.

Menominee River - Anglers were ice fishing upstream from the mouth near the first bridge. This area has a mixed bag but most anglers were targeting panfish. Catch rates were slow with only a few small bluegills and the occasional crappie taken. Those fishing at the Sixth Street slip on the Marinette side need to use extreme caution as a truck went halfway in near the boat landing. Walleye and whitefish were caught late afternoon into the evening by those using jigs in a variety of colors and sizes. The river is open near Stephenson Island where anglers are wading or fishing from shore. Some are fly fishing while others are casting a variety of rapalas for brown trout, steelhead or walleye. Those fishing the Wisconsin side at the Hattie Street Dam were taking walleye, whitefish and pike through the ice. On the Michigan side, anglers were fishing the open waters from shore for steelhead and brown trout.

Little Bay De Noc - Ice in the shipping channel in Escanaba has reopened producing DANGEROUS ice conditions. Anglers are discouraged from venturing out in this area. The majority of anglers are going out from the Terrace Bay Inn and north to the head of the Bay. Some were driving vehicles out north of the Narrows however it is not recommended. Several large ice breaks have opened in various areas across the Bay so anglers need to use extreme caution. Walleye catches have been fair at best with most of the large fish caught off the Center Reef with tip-ups and suckers in 25 to 31 feet of water. The best concentrations of fish have been south of Gladstone Beach in 25 to 35 feet of water. Try jigging rapalas with minnows. Those fishing the head of the Bay caught walleye and perch when jigging rapalas or using tip-ups with suckers in 8 to 19 feet of water. Catch rates for perch slowed however fish were still caught in both deep and shallow waters. Try jigging minnows in 27 to 35 feet of water or spikes and wigglers in 11 to 17 feet of water near Kipling. Jumbo perch were caught at the head of the Bay in 8 to 13 feet of water. Several large pike were taken off the Second Reef when using suckers in 27 to 33 feet of water.

Michigan DNR Fishing Report for January 15th

Friday, January 15th, 2010

Ice fishing is well underway on greater Saginaw Bay, but anglers are cautioned to be very careful about expansion cracks. Ice conditions should improve with continued cold weather. Anglers are advised to use caution when going out on the ice and always test the ice thickness with a spud.

Southeast Lower Peninsula

Lake Erie - Ice anglers in Brest bay are marking and catching walleye on shiner minnows, Rapalas and spoons. Perch are being taken around Banana Dike and Pt. Mouillee on teardrops with shiner minnows. Perch are also being taken in the main channel heading into the Metro Park Marina on wigglers and minnows. Bluegill are being caught on wax worms and spikes in the dock area.

Detroit River - Anglers are taking yellow perch in Airport Bay at the south end of Grosse Isle on teardrops with shiner minnows. At Gibraltar by the boat launch anglers are catching yellow perch and bluegill.

Lake St. Clair - While there is safe shore ice there are still many unsafe areas of thin ice, some with snow cover, and numerous quads and snowmobiles have gone through the ice over the past week. With warmer temperatures forecast later this week there will continue to be thin spots. Anglers have been catching lots of small perch with a few larger perch mixed in. The areas being fished the most are Geno’s, Crocker, the Spillway, Selfridge, and Fairhaven.

Lexington - Has a lot of fishing activity, but the catch is mostly small perch.

Port Sanilac - Anglers are just starting to get out at the harbor, but the water is still very turbid.

Saginaw Bay - Perch fishing was good in 3 to 7 feet of water in Wigwam Bay, with most anglers getting on at Hale Road, the mouth of the Pine River, or Palmer Road. Walleye anglers were also fishing out of these sites at night. Some perch were also being taken off Pinconning Park and in the basin at Linwood Marina. Some good catches of 8 to 10 inch perch were also reported out near Buoy 22. Many of the access sites along the west side of the bay were not being used due to numerous expansion cracks offshore. Some perch are being taken from 5 feet of water off Vanderbilt Park near Quanicassee. A few walleye were taken about 2.5 miles out. There is sporadic perch action from Sebewaing to Bay Port in 5 to 10 feet of water, mostly inside the islands. Ice conditions are uncertain outside the islands. Watch the cracks.

Saginaw River - A lot of angling activity on the lower river from the Independence Bridge downstream to the mouth and spilling out onto the bay. There are a lot of sub-legal walleye in the river and a lot of sorting is necessary. There is little fishing activity upstream between Bay City and Saginaw, as ice through that reach is still iffy.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

There is ice in southwest Michigan but it varies. Some lakes in the region such as Gull Lake still have open water or skim ice only. Anglers need to use extreme caution and travel by foot only when going out on the ice.

St. Joe River - Boats were still trolling for steelhead and walleye.

Grand River at Grand Rapids - Anglers are picking up steelhead on white jigs and wax worms. Walleye are being taken on bucktail jigs.

Reeds Lake - Anglers are catching perch on glow-in-the-dark jigs with spikes or wax worms and minnows. Bluegill are hitting on orange and brown teardrops tipped with spikes or mousies. Crappie are in 30 feet of water, fishing 15 feet down. Pike are being taken on golden shiner minnows and suckers in 20 to 30 feet of water, 3 to 4 feet off the bottom. On the east end of the lake, anglers are spearing pike in 6 to 10 feet of water.

Lake Lansing - Pike fishing continues on tip-ups with pike minnows.

Muskrat Lake - Anglers were out fishing for panfish.

Muskegon Lake -Anglers are targeting pike in the narrows, Snug Harbor and in shallow areas and bays. They are waiting for better ice to get into deeper water where the perch fishing is usually better.

White Lake - Fishing for perch and pike has been slow.

Gun Lake - Is producing bluegill and black crappie.

Gull Lake - Anglers are taking smelt at night on the south bay. The rest of the lake may not be safe at this time.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Mullet Lake - Anglers are starting to catch a few perch, but overall activity has been slow. A few perch are being caught with minnows in both the south & north ends of the lake. Ice thickness varies. Ice has just formed within the last couple of days in the middle section of the lake.

Thunder Bay River - There is ice in the turning basin and marina. Catch rates were still slow.

Hubbard Lake - Ice anglers are reporting good catches of walleye; however, there are still open spots so use caution on the ice.

Au Sable River - A few steelhead can be found from the mouth to Foote dam. Fishing should pick up with warmer weather.

Higgins Lake - Ice anglers are catching rainbow trout in the shallows. Some smelt and a few lake trout have been taken.

Houghton Lake - Pike are being caught lake-wide. Walleye are being taken in East Bay and the north shore. Bluegill fishing has been spotty and a few crappie have been caught.

Au Gres The ice isn’t safe yet, so most fishing activity is in the river. Anglers there are getting a few walleye, with a fair number of sub-legal fish to sort through.

Tawas Bay - Some pike are being speared in 10 to 15 feet of water. Walleye fishing is still spotty, with evening fishing being the best. Walleye anglers would like to get out to deeper water, but the ice isn’t safe out there yet. Perch fishing is slow, with almost nothing but small perch being caught.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Traverse City - Both the East Bay and the West Bay have shoreline ice only.

Lake Missaukee - Ice fishermen are out targeting panfish.

Lake Cadillac - Is producing some nice northern pike and panfish.

Lake Mitchell - Is also producing some panfish and northern pike.

Manistee Lake -Fishing has been slow with a few small pike and perch being caught.

Manistee River - Still producing some steelhead but has slowed with the cold weather.

Pere Marquette River - Should also have a fair number of steelhead.

Upper Peninsula

Green Bay/Menominee River - Ice conditions on the bay are still poor but are improving with the cold temperatures. Anglers have been fishing between the docks in the marina for panfish, northern pike and trout. Pike and trout fisherman are jigging and using tip-ups.

Little Bay de Noc - Ice conditions from just north of Saunders Point to the head of the bay are reported to be stable with a few exceptions. Extreme caution should still be used. Saunders Point, the edges of Butler Island and the mouths of the rivers should be avoided. South of the Narrows the ice extends just past the Terrace Inn with most of the area considered unsafe. Open water remains from the Escanaba River south as the ships have been keeping this area open. Fair to good catches of perch reported in the Kipling area with best catches in 10 to 12 feet of water jigging glow teardrops with spikes. There are also good catches of perch at the head of the bay jigging wigglers in 8 to 13 feet of water. The best walleye catches were out in the Gladstone area jigging Rapalas in 25 to 35 feet of water in early morning or at dusk. Anglers also reported good catches of whitefish. Anglers spearing the Kipling area for northern pike reported seeing better numbers of fish with several large fish harvested.

Cedarville & Hessel – Cedarville is seeing more action, but overall fish sizes are smaller. Anglers on Musky Bay are fishing minnows, wax worms and wigglers in 12 to 14 feet of water. Legal perch catches are fair, with numerous undersized perch and pike being thrown back. Anglers fishing on Hessel Bay are fishing in 12 to 14 feet of water catching 9 to 13 inch yellow perch on wigglers. Walleye fishing has been good at Munuscong in 3.5 feet of water. Walleye are averaging 15 to 19 inches with anglers jigging with minnows on the west end of the bay. While targeting walleye some anglers are also reporting nice catches of perch and pike.

Michigan DNR Fishing Report: Jan. 7th

Thursday, January 7th, 2010

Mixed reports are still coming in regarding ice safety. Snow cover does insulate the ice and slow the freezing process. Avoid structures such as docks or pilings and stay off any soft or discolored ice. Always test the ice thickness with a spud. Use the buddy system and tell someone where you are going and when you expect to return. Be sure to wear a flotation devise and take rescue gear such as a rope, ladder, or anything that you could use to extend your reach.

Southeast Lower Peninsula

Lake Erie - Ice anglers were catching some jumbo perch around the Banana Dike when using teardrops with minnows or wax worms. Those fishing the main channel heading into the Metro Park Marina caught yellow perch and bluegills on small teardrops with wax worms or spikes. A few northern pike were also caught however the fish were running small.

Detroit River - Anglers were open water fishing for perch off Gibraltar. A couple ice anglers caught a few perch in shallow waters behind the Wyandotte Hospital.

Lake St. Clair - Has shore ice near Fairhaven, Selfridge and Metro Beach. Ice thickness is extremely variable so anglers need to use extreme caution. They caught small perch along with a few keepers mixed in. Continued sub-freezing temperatures this week should make for good ice by the weekend.

Port Austin - Anglers have started to venture out on the ice, but use caution.

Saginaw Bay - Ice anglers are fishing shallow waters. Early shelf ice was good for perch but that has slowed. There were reports of fish caught near the Bay City State Park. The Bay still had some open water so anglers need to use caution.

Saginaw River - Walleye anglers are catching fish near the mouth.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

There is ice in southwest Michigan but it varies. Some lakes in the region such as Gull Lake still have open water or skim ice only. Anglers need to use extreme caution and travel by foot only when going out on the ice. Northern pike have been biting very well and the yellow perch bite was good. Bluegills were caught in the morning and evening.

St. Joe River - Boats were still trolling for steelhead and walleye.

Grand River at Grand Rapids - Fishing has slowed and there is ice coming over the dam. Those braving the cold were still picking up the occasional steelhead when using spawn or a jig and wax worm. A few walleye were also caught.

Lake Lansing - Pike have been caught on tip-ups with pike minnows.

Muskrat Lake - A few anglers were out fishing for crappie and bluegills.

Lake Ovid - Has ice and a few anglers have been going out with portable shanties.

Muskegon Lake - A freighter left from the Mart Dock and headed to Lake Michigan so anglers will want to avoid the ice near that area. Perch have been caught on the west side and bluegills were hitting off the State Park and in the marinas. Pike were caught off Hartshorn Marina. Most anglers are fishing the bays, coves and marinas.

Muskegon River - Steelhead anglers should still find fish in the upper sections.

White Lake - Those out spearing have taken some pike.

White River - Should also have steelhead in the upper sections.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Recent snowfall along with blowing and drifting snow in this region has put a lot of pressure on relatively thin ice, creating slush and hazardous conditions on area inland lakes. Extreme caution needs to be used.

Grand Lake - Is iced over however caution should be used and foot traffic only. Perch of all sizes have been caught along with a few walleye and pike.

Thunder Bay River - There is ice in the turning basin and marina. Only a few perch were caught. Steelhead were caught below the dam however catch rates were slow.

Hubbard Lake - Is always the last to produce safe ice. Anglers are advised to not go beyond the more sheltered areas such the East Bay just yet.

Au Sable River - Steelhead and brown trout were still being caught in the deeper holes. The Mio Pond was producing some crappie.

Higgins Lake - Is just freezing over however the deepwater ice is not safe. Anglers should fish the shallow waters only. Those spearing for pike can be found off the southwest side of the lake. Rainbow trout were caught in the shallows near Big Creek. Anglers were using wigglers and wax worms.

Houghton Lake - Ice anglers are taking northern pike on tip-ups with minnows. Walleye have been caught out by the Middle Grounds. Most are jigging along the weeds in 6 to 8 feet of water.

Tawas - Ice anglers are fishing the shallows for brown trout.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Deep snow across the region has covered some inland lakes with slush and that makes for difficult travel across the ice. Anglers need to be careful.

Traverse City - Both the East Bay and the West Bay have shoreline ice only. The open water is due to strong north winds.

Boardman River - A few anglers are still seeking the occasional steelhead.

Lake Missaukee - Has ice and anglers are out targeting panfish.

Lake Cadillac - Is producing some nice northern pike for those spearing or using tip ups with large minnows. Walleye anglers were doing well when using tip-ups with light line. Those seeking panfish have caught good numbers of crappie along with some bluegills and perch. Many are fishing the west side of the lake.

Lake Mitchell - Is also producing some nice northern pike. The better walleye bite has been in the early morning or late evening. Black crappie were caught.

Manistee River - Still has steelhead for those that can fish in arctic conditions.

Pere Marquette River - Should also have a fair number of steelhead.

UPPER PENINSULA

There were no reports this week for the Upper Peninsula. Though ice continues to build, anglers are reminded to use extreme caution when venturing out.

Happy New Year, and your Michigan DNR Fishing Report

Thursday, December 31st, 2009

I hope everyone has a happy and safe New Year for 2010. If you plan on going ice fishing, use caution, some areas are better than others this time of the year, and always bring your spud at first ice.

Ice conditions around the state are spotty. Some inland lakes have enough ice to support foot traffic only. Anglers are advised to keep snowmobiles, quads and other large vehicles off the ice. There have been various reports of anglers, snowmobiles and large vehicles going through the ice in some locations. Anglers heading out are reminded to use extreme caution. 

Southeast Lower Peninsula
Lake Erie - Ice anglers were starting to catch a few jumbo perch around the Banana Dike but caution needs to be used and travel should be restricted to foot traffic only. Those fishing in the Metro Park Marina were catching bluegills on spikes or mousies. Anglers are reminded to use the Lee Road entrance.Huron River - Those fishing the deeper holes were still taking a couple steelhead. Try spawn, wax worms or crank baits.Port Austin - Had no safe ice to report. The piers were ice covered and dangerous.Saginaw Bay - Strong northwest winds have created open water once again. Ice anglers will need to wait for safe ice to form. That could happen by the weekend if temperatures stay cold and there is little to no wind.Saginaw River - Ice was forming however there was open water near the mouth.Southwest Lower Peninsula
St. Joe River - Boats trolling from the mouth to the Berrien Springs Dam are still taking some walleye. Most are using fathead minnows.Van Auken Lake - Ice anglers were fishing the channel only. Ice on the lake was not safe as of this report. Bluegill and crappie were caught on wax worms, spikes or mousies.Grand River at Grand Rapids - Steelhead are being caught on jigs with wax worms or pink and white spawn. Walleye were hitting on bucktail jigs, rapalas and minnows.Rogue River - Was also producing some steelhead.Grand River at Lansing - The walleye action over at Moore’s Park was slow however fish were still being caught.Red Cedar River - Was producing a few pike.Lake Lansing - Ice anglers are catching small bluegills and a few perch.Muskrat Lake - Ice anglers are catching bluegills and crappie.Muskegon Lake - Had a few anglers fishing bluegills in shallow waters in the northwest corner of the lake. Boats still able to get out were launching from Hartshorn Marina and catching perch on minnows or spikes.Muskegon River - Anglers were still catching a few steelhead near Bridgeton, especially when the water levels came up after the rain.White Lake - Ice anglers are targeting bluegills near Wesley’s Marina. Pike anglers were starting to use tip-ups in the northeast section of the lake near the narrows.White River - Steelhead were caught up near Pines Point Campground.Northeast Lower Peninsula
Inland lakes in the Grayling and Mio area as well as Roscommon and Kalkaska County are frozen over with thin ice. Some have been getting out by foot but caution needs to be used. 

Alpena - Ice was starting to form in the harbor however there was no safe ice as of this report.Au Sable River - Anglers continue to catch fair to good numbers of steelhead along with a few brown trout. Most are fishing the deeper holes with spawn, wax worms or artificial baits.Higgins Lake - Reported ice out to the drop off but open water beyond that. There was no safe ice to report. It will be two or three weeks yet for safe ice, and that’s if the weather stays cold.Houghton Lake - Ice anglers are catching walleye and pike. Some bluegills were caught off the north and south shore.Tawas - Ice was starting to form around the state dock however there was no safe ice as of this report. Conditions could change by the weekend if it stays cold.Northwest Lower Peninsula
Traverse City - Both the East Bay and the West Bay have open water. No safe ice to report.Skegemog Lake - Ice anglers are catching a few perch.Long Lake - Ice anglers have started catching a few walleye and perch. Pike were hitting on tip-ups.Lake Cadillac - Ice anglers are taking fair to good numbers of northern pike when using tip-ups or spear fishing. A few walleye were also caught. Those fishing in shallow waters have caught bluegills and crappie. Ice shanties were seen on the west side of the lake.Lake Mitchell - Has ice however the better fishing was on Cadillac.Manistee River - Those braving the cold were still finding some steelhead. 

UPPER PENINSULA
Great care should be taken on the ice as it was fairly thin before the last two significant snow falls. Now there is slush and thin layered ice on many lakes. At least four vehicles have gone through the ice on the Michigamme Reservoir and other area lakes in Iron and Dickinson County as well as Forest County in Wisconsin. 

Michigamme Reservoir - Has ice and some slush. A local angler put his vehicle through the ice. With that said, foot traffic should be the only way anglers travel across the ice. Extreme caution needs to be used. A few pike have been caught.Big Manistique Lake - Has ice and is producing walleye along with some perch.South Manistique Lake - Is also producing walleye and a few perch. Both lakes should also start producing some pike.Twin Lake - Near Newberry has ice and the bluegill anglers are out.

Michigan DNR Fishing Report for 12/10

Thursday, December 10th, 2009

As we move through the transition between open-water fishing and ice fishing, the weekly reports will keep getting smaller. Sounds like freeze-up may be imminent toward the end of this week. With highs in the 20′s from Wednesday on, open-water fishing may come to an end. Shallow lakes have started to freeze over however there is no safe ice to report. This would be a good time to get the ice fishing gear ready to go.

 

Southeast Lower Peninsula

Lake Erie - Shore anglers casting bombers at night were still taking a few walleye off Luna Pier and Sterling State Park. The Metro Park dock is still in. Those fishing in the marina were catching bluegills. Try a small teardrop with a wax worm.

Huron River - Those fishing all the way up to the dam at Flat Rock were still taking some nice steelhead when using spawn or wax worms.

Detroit River - Boat anglers jigging large minnows near Horse Island caught some nice walleye. Light numbers of perch were caught and some were keepers.

Lexington - Anglers were still fishing from shore and the piers however catch rates were slow. Very few perch were caught and many were small. A steelhead or two were still being caught but the action was hit-or-miss.

Kawkawlin River - Anglers were catching good numbers of perch.

Saginaw River - Walleye fishing has been good on the right day.

Tittabawassee River - Is usually a good place for early winter walleye.

Quanicassee River - Had fair to good perch fishing.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

St. Joe - Pier anglers were still heading out for perch. Most were using minnows.

St. Joe River - Steelhead and brown trout have been caught up near the Berrien Springs Dam. Those trolling in the river have caught steelhead, walleye and bass.

Grand Haven - Pier anglers were still out for whitefish and steelhead when using spawn and wax worms.

Muskegon - Pier anglers were still taking some steelhead when using spawn. Whitefish were caught in the channel near the Coast Guard Station.

Muskegon Lake - Walleye were caught at night when trolling along the edge of the weeds in waters up to 12 feet deep. Fish were taken near Second Street, the Bear Lake Channel and along the south end of the lake. Most were using #12 Husky Jerks or #10 deep diving Husky Jerks. Small pike were caught during the day. Perch were caught in the deep hole in front of the Bear Lake Channel and along the west side of the lake.

Muskegon River - Steelhead have been caught between Bridgeton and Maple Island when using the drop back method. Spawn worked best.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Thunder Bay River - A few perch are being caught in the river and around the Marina. The whitefish run is over but an occasional fish is still being caught. Not much to report on steelhead, but anglers should still find some fish below the dam.

Au Sable River - There are still some fresh run fish available, but the boat ramps are snowed in and the river is hard to wade this time of year. Steelhead could be found between the mouth and Foote Dam. The occasional whitefish was caught on wax worms near the mouth.

Houghton Lake - Is covered with skim ice. There is no safe ice to report. Shore fishing has ended as the canals have frozen over. Anglers are now waiting to see what impact the storm will have on ice conditions.

Tawas - Had few reports as catch rates for walleye and whitefish have slowed.

Rifle River - Steelhead anglers were still taking a few fish when using spawn or wax worms.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Traverse City - No anglers have been out open-water fishing. Most are now preparing for the onset of the ice fishing season.

Boardman River - Steelhead were still being caught by those using spawn or wax worms.

Betsie River - Is still producing the occasional steelhead.

Manistee River - Steelhead fishing continues to be the only fishing activity.

Ludington - Pier and shore anglers are still catching steelhead however the action has slowed.

Pere Marquette River - Those braving the cold have caught the occasional steelhead. Try spawn or wax worms.

UPPER PENINSULA

Open water muskie fishing is wrapping up. Many of the shallow lakes in the area are ice covered however there was no safe ice to report. The deeper lakes still had open water.

Michigan DNR Fishing Report for 12/3/09

Thursday, December 3rd, 2009

Stream and pier fishing is about the only action taking place right now. Those with boats not in storage were still fishing a few inland lakes for walleye and perch. This is a good time of year for shore anglers to catch fish in the shallows.

 

Southeast Lower Peninsula

Lake Erie - Shore anglers fishing off Luna Pier have caught walleye. Most were casting bombers at night. Bluegills were hitting on wax worms in the Metro Park Marina.

Huron River - Fresh steelhead are being caught from the mouth to the dam at Flat Rock. Anglers are using a variety of baits including a jig and wax worm, Hot-n-Tots or Rooster Tails. Those hitting the backwaters continue to catch bluegill and crappie.

Detroit River - Had good walleye action out in front of Gibraltar. Boat and shore anglers were taking fish when trolling and jigging. Yellow perch were caught around Sugar Island.

Lake St. Clair - Perch anglers were taking fish off the Grosse Pointe Yacht Club and the 400 Club. Those able to get out to the Belle River Hump were also taking some nice catches.

St. Clair River - Those casting spoons and rapalas at night have caught a few fish under the Blue Water Bridge.

Saginaw River - Has fair to good walleye action in the lower river however some of the fish were small. A few yellow perch were caught however anglers will need to sort out the small ones.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

St. Joe - Pier anglers were still taking a fair to good number of whitefish. Try spawn or wax worms.

St. Joe River - Steelhead have been caught up near the dam at Berrien Springs. The latest trend is floating shrimp under a bobber.

Grand Haven - Whitefish are still being caught on spawn or wax worms. Steelhead anglers are fishing in the early morning or late evening. There were reports of perch caught in 50 feet of water. Try minnows or spikes.

Grand River at Grand Rapids - Steelhead numbers are good and with the recent rain, catch rates were better. Most are back bouncing with spawn sacks or floating a jig and wax worm. Those fishing near the mouth of the Rogue River and the Thornapple River have caught steelhead and walleye when using Hot-n-Tots or rapalas. Bluegill and crappie have been caught in the pond at Riverside Park. Try white or chartreuse jigs with a wax worm.

Grand River at Lansing - Anglers will want to look downriver for steelhead. Try fishing between Grand Rapids and Ionia. Nothing to report on resident fish as no anglers were out.

Muskegon - Those surfcasting have caught steelhead. Boat and shore anglers have caught whitefish in the channel in the early morning or late evening when jigging spoons just off the bottom.

Muskegon Lake - Walleye anglers have caught fish when trolling along the edge of the weeds in 10 to 15 feet of water. Concentrate on the east half of the lake when trolling deep diving Husky Jerks. White perch have been caught on the west side of the lake by those using wax worms, spikes or mousies just off the bottom in 40 feet of water. Try fishing the marinas as well.

Muskegon River - Steelhead have been caught up near Bridgeton when back trolling with spawn.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Black Lake - A few anglers were out perch fishing.

Grand Lake - Perch anglers were out but catch rates were spotty.

Thunder Bay River - Anglers are still targeting steelhead and whitefish. Most are using ice jigs with wax worms, wigglers or spawn. The whitefish action should last through the first week of December.

Oscoda - Pier anglers continue to catch the occasional steelhead and whitefish.

Au Sable River - Steelhead have been caught all the up to the dam. Try spawn, wax worms, rapalas or small spoons. Whitefish were caught just off the bottom when using spawn or wax worms.

Houghton Lake - Shore anglers fishing in the early morning or late evening have caught some nice walleye close to shore and in the canals. Pike have also been caught as they are actively feeding this time of year.

Tawas - Whitefish action slowed for those fishing off the State Dock. The occasional brown trout and a few small perch were caught in the bay.

Rifle River - Anglers have reported catching brown trout and steelhead north of the Melita Bridge.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Traverse City - The East Bay is still producing some whitefish. The fish are starting to spawn so anglers will need to check various depths to locate fish. A few perch were taken in the West Bay. Some of those perch were in the 8 to 11 inch range.

Boardman River - Recent rains did push some steelhead up into the river.

North Lake Leelanau - Had fair to good perch fishing.

Big Glen Lake - Perch fishing has picked up again.

Frankfort - Boat anglers have caught salmon when trolling north and south in 125 feet of water. Steelhead were found in the top 15 to 20 feet of waters 40 to 125 feet deep. Brown trout were caught in 35 to 40 feet of water. Pier anglers caught fish in the early morning or late evening.

Betsie River - Steelhead can still be found in the river.

Manistee - Pier anglers are still heading out for steelhead.

Manistee River - Steelhead fishing continues to be the only fishing activity on the river right now.

Ludington - Pier and shore anglers are still catching steelhead.

Pere Marquette River - Steelhead have been caught near US-31 and up near Scottville. Try spawn under a bobber.

UPPER PENINSULA

Paint Pond - Near Crystal Falls is producing some big muskie. Fish were hitting on sucker rigs.

Little Bay De Noc - No big numbers but walleye were still being caught by those trolling at night with rapalas or stick baits.

11/13 Brest Bay Walleyes

Saturday, November 14th, 2009

Once you get past dealing with all the weeds floating around in the bay, there is still some fine walleye fishing to be had inside Monroe’s Brest Bay on Lake Erie.  The weeds are above and below the boards, so you catch a double whammy on your lure as well when you bring the boards in to get cleaned off.  When they are actually clean there are fish to be caught.

3

All the fish yesterday came on TD #11 Taildancers and #800 Reef Runners.  Metallics worked early and as the sun went behind the clouds in the late afternoon, bright chartrueses and oranges took their toll.  Running between 1.1 and 1.4 mph, while letting out 20 to 35 ft behind the boards.

Michigan DNR Report for November 12th

Thursday, November 12th, 2009

As more anglers turn their attention to hunting, there will be fewer reports, at least until ice fishing season starts. Late fall and early winter are prime time for hungry walleye, pike, and bass. Whitefish should be spawning.

 

Southeast Lower Peninsula

Lake Erie - Some yellow perch were caught in 7 to 12 feet of water between Metro Park and Rat Island. A few jumbos were taken along with a couple walleye and muskie. Brest Bay was producing limits of walleye in 16 to 18 feet of water. Fish were hitting on husky jerks, reef runners and big shad raps. Those shore fishing at the Metro Park Marina have caught yellow perch on minnows and bluegills on wax worms. Anglers are reminded to access the marina by taking Lee Road.

Huron River - Steelhead are still being caught especially up near the dam at Flat Rock. Fresh spawn worked best.

Detroit River - Yellow perch have been caught around the islands off Gibraltar and Grosse Ile. Try 6 to 12 feet of water with perch minnows and perch rigs. Walleye have been caught in the lower river on a jig and big minnow. Some are handlining and some are trolling rapalas.

Lexington - Pier anglers were catching perch. They will need to do some sorting but fish ranging from 9 to 11 inches have been caught. Some steelhead were caught but it seems they have moved out of the harbor because of the warm temperatures. Keep in mind, steelhead tend to move in and out, so persistence will pay off in the long run. They were hitting on small spoons, crawlers, minnows, and spawn sacks.

Port Sanilac - Perch fishing was equally good in this harbor but most were fishing at Lexington.

Saginaw Bay - Had very good walleye fishing in the lower part of the Bay. Vertical jigging from boats was the most effective method. Fish were caught in 13 to 16 feet of water when trolling body baits near the sailing buoys.

Tittabawassee River - Anglers reported excellent walleye fishing. Try jigs with minnows or vertical jigging from boats. Small perch were caught at the mouth.

Saginaw River - Is producing some good numbers of walleye. Perch were caught down near the mouth, but many were small.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

St. Joe - Pier anglers are still taking some steelhead. Catch rates for whitefish were very good off both piers when using a single egg. Limit catches were reported.

St. Joe River - Steelhead were still being caught up at the Berrien Springs Dam.

Kalamazoo River - Has steelhead and walleye up near the Allegan Dam.

Grand Haven - When the weather permits, pier anglers are still finding steelhead and whitefish. Try drifting or floating spawn under a bobber.

Grand River at Grand Rapids - Steelhead are still being caught up near the dam. Anglers are floating choker bags, drifting flies, back bouncing with spawn or casting plugs off the bridges. Walleye were caught near the bridges when trolling bucktail jigs or drifting crawler harnesses with small blades. Off the east wall, try minnows or artificial worms.

Grand River at Lansing - A couple steelhead were caught up at the North Lansing Dam however no big numbers to report. More fish might be found near Portland or Lyons. Anglers are seeking panfish with the warmer temperatures.

Muskegon - Steelhead have been caught off the piers. Boat anglers took fish when trolling body baits or rapalas that resemble rainbow trout. A few whitefish were caught off the pier but catch rates should improve in the next week or two.

Muskegon Lake - Has resident perch being caught along the edge of the weeds. Pockets of bluegills were reported in 8 to 12 feet of water in the marinas. Walleye were caught along the drop-offs near the channels when using Husky Jerks at night.

Muskegon River - Should be holding some steelhead.

White River - Should have fair to good numbers of steelhead.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Alpena - Whitefish action continues to build as we move further into the month of November. Seek out shallow waters along the reefs where the fish are spawning. Most anglers use small jigs with a single egg under a bobber. Those spearing are heading out after dark.

Thunder Bay River - Anglers are catching steelhead along with some whitefish when floating spawn under a bobber. Those fishing around the marina have caught some perch but the fish were small.

Harrisville - Salmon, steelhead and some brown trout have been caught on spawn, body baits or small spoons. Spawn remains the bait of choice. Walleye were caught off the harbor wall in the early morning or late evening.

Au Sable River - Steelhead are hitting on spawn all the way up to Foote Dam. Whitefish can be found in the lower river and catch rates should continue to improve. Try a small jig with a single egg.

Houghton Lake - No boats have been out but those fishing off shore have managed to catch a couple walleye.

Tawas - Pier anglers are still catching some walleye and steelhead. The better walleye fishing was at night. Lake Whitefish are biting on minnows off the Tawas State Dock, mostly at night.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Traverse City - Boat anglers are catching a few whitefish in both bays but the better action was in the East Bay. Try fishing just off the bottom in 60 to 100 feet of water with jigs or sand kickers.

Long Lake - Anglers are taking a few perch and walleye.

Lake Leelanau - Is also producing some perch and walleye.

Big Glen Lake - Perch were still biting but many were small.

Frankfort - Steelhead and some menominee whitefish are being caught off the pier.

Betsie River - Steelhead fishing is in full swing.

Manistee - A few boats are still going out and catching salmon along with some steelhead in waters 50 to 200 feet deep. Pier anglers and those surfcasting have caught fish. Whitefish were taken off the pier when using a single egg.

Manistee River - The fall steelhead run is in full swing with anglers fishing all the way up to Tippy Dam. The fish should be active and ready to put up a good fight.

Ludington - Steelhead and whitefish are being caught off the pier.

Pere Marquette River - Had fair to good steelhead action.

Pentwater Lake - Offers some good smallmouth bass fishing in the fall. Anglers will also find a few perch and those trolling have a good chance of catching a steelhead or big pike.

Pentwater River - Steelhead were hitting on spawn.

UPPER PENINSULA

Little Bay De Noc - Walleye catches were down however fish were still being caught when trolling stick baits after dusk in 4 to 22 feet of water off the reefs in Kipling. Those fishing during the day were marking good numbers of fish in 25 to 35 feet of water off the East Bank near Gladstone, but few fish were caught. Several large pike were taken when trolling crank baits north of the Narrows. A fair number of perch were caught on crawlers in 8 to 12 feet of water out from Brach’s Cabins near Kipling.

St. Mary’s River - Some steelhead were caught in the rapids across from the Locks. Good walleye fishing with limit catches reported in Munuscong Bay. Anglers were taking some big fish when trolling rapalas or other deep diving lures.

Brest Bay Report

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

Things have not slowed down out on Erie lately and the recent warm spell (of sorts) has seemed not to have driven the walleyes any deeper than what they have been.

Key into running east to west when the wind is right, from the launch start fishing about 14 ft, and make a beeline towards Stoney Point.  Fish around the rocks and make your return run inside your last one.  The walleyes have been stacking in around 17 foot according to most of the reports and what I caught last week.

I had an email this morning about which crankbaits to try using, and seriously I almost wrote back saying, “Does it matter?”  What seems to be working for one boat is totally different from what is working on five other boats coming back with reports.  The key here seems to change up colors until you find what works for you, and even more importantly change speeds until you start getting results.

Speeds range from 1.2 mph upwards to 1.8 mph.  Reef Runners (600′s, 700′s and 800′s), Deep Husky Jerks, big Taildancers, Deep and Deep Jr. Thundersticks, plus some Shad Raps catching fish as well.

Luna Pier Heating Up

Friday, November 6th, 2009

If you still have the walleye bug, and your boat is put away, you still have options.  One of those is going south of Monroe and fishing in the evenings at Luna Pier. Bring the essentials; long rod, lots of floating cranks, long net is nice, and waders are optional if you have them.  Thermos of coffee is a must.

Best technique? Toss your bait out like fishing any other type of pier. As soon as you feel it ticking some rocks…..STOP!!!  Allow the bait to rise or float up a bit before beginning to reel it in some more.  This method will help you avoid those nasty snags.

If the water has been blown out by a good west wind, then is the time to break out the waders, or at least some good hip boots.  This will allow you to get further out with your casts where the fish are. Not as rocky passed a certain point, but still use caution when ticking along the bottom.

Dress like you are ice fishing, heavy boots…the whole 9 yards.  The cold damp air will cut through you, so a lil’ fleece under some gore tex is nice to have.  Couple of those air activated hot pads/bags come in handy too.