Michigan Weekly Fishing Reports

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Thursday, April 24, 2008
Recreational Fishing Report

Great Lakes temperature map

This coming Saturday, April 26 marks the opening of trout season on the Type 1 and Type 2 waters, the walleye, northern pike and muskellunge opener on the Lower Peninsula inland waters, and the opening of the “catch and immediate release” bass season on certain waters in the state. Consult the general hook and line regulations on page 10 in the Michigan Fishing Guide for additional information.

Southeast Lower Peninsula

Lake Erie – Fishing has picked up and the walleye have started to bite. Anglers are trolling crank baits in Brest Bay or jigging around Turtle Island. Anglers are reminded that the border line for Ohio runs through Turtle Island so an Ohio license is needed to fish in Ohio waters. The waters are still muddy but fishing should improve.

Huron River – Steelhead are being caught between the two dams when using a jig and a wax worm or spawn under a bobber. Below the dam, anglers are using flies. Good perch and crappie fishing in the backwaters.

Detroit River – Anglers are catching walleye in the lower Trenton Channel and near Wyandotte. Some are jigging with power baits while others have started handlining. Water levels were still high but fishable.

Port Sanilac – Boat anglers are taking good numbers of coho, brown trout and steelhead when trolling planer boards with long lines in shallow waters. Body baits and small spoons worked best. Pier anglers were taking a few perch.

Lexington – Boat anglers are trolling in 10 to 20 feet of water for trout and salmon. Pier anglers catching perch are sorting out the small ones.

Harbor Beach to Port Austin – There is not much happening at these ports. There was some night fishing for walleye, but no reports have come in.

Saginaw Bay – Reported fair perch fishing out around the commercial nets off Pine River and Palmer Roads in 7 to 10 feet of water. Good walleye fishing off Linwood in 13 feet of water on crawler harnesses, off the mouth of the Kawkawlin River on jigs, and off the mouth of the Quanicassee River on crawler harnesses. Shore anglers have caught a few large crappie out of the Bayshore Marina near Bay Port. Slow perch fishing at Caseville.

Quanicassee River – Shore anglers have caught perch and catfish in the lower river.

Sebewaing River – A few small perch were caught in the river and the marina.

Pinnebog River – Sucker anglers are still doing well.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

St. Joseph – Boat anglers are taking coho and brown trout.

St. Joe River – Look for fair to good steelhead fishing. Good places to try are near the Berrien Springs Dam or the Niles Dam.

South Haven – Not many anglers were fishing off the pier. Boat anglers are catching mainly coho while trolling in waters 20 to 40 feet deep. Fish the mud lines.

Grand Haven – Pier anglers are still catching a few browns and the occasional steelhead on spawn. Boat anglers caught lake trout, brown trout, walleye and small chinook salmon when trolling body baits in 10 to 45 feet of water. Perch were caught south of the pier however the fish are running small.

Grand River at Grand Rapids – There are some nice walleye in the river so the opener looks to be good. Try trolling with crawler harnesses or rapalas. Steelhead can still be found up near the Sixth Street Dam. Some big crappie are still being caught in the backwaters and the bluegills are starting to hit.

Rogue River – Look for steelhead up near the dam.

Reeds Lake – Has good crappie fishing with limits reported. Perch have been caught near the sunken island and the bluegills are starting to hit.

Grand River at Lansing – Steelhead are being caught at the North Lansing Dam and over at Moore’s Park. Most fish were caught on black stone flies. The crappie bite has been very good in the backwaters, and catfish were caught below both the dams when using crawlers.

Pine River – In Gratiot County, anglers were catching some nice crappie in the 10 to 15 inch range.

Muskegon – Pier fishing has slowed, but anglers are still trying for steelhead and brown trout. Boat anglers are trolling top water baits in waters up to 50 feet deep. No perch activity to report.

Muskegon Lake – Anglers are catching perch and walleye in the channel.

Whitehall – Pier fishing was slow as most of the steelhead are in the rivers and the browns have not come in yet in good numbers. Walleye are just starting to show up at the piers. Boat launches are accessible but the docks were not in yet.

White River – Has a good number of steelhead in it. Try fishing the North Branch from Arthur Road down to the confluence or the main branch from the mouth to the Hesperia Dam.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Rogers City – Has slow fishing due to the cold water temperatures, which are still in the low 40’s. Boats are trolling in 30 feet of water while using planer boards with body baits. The water is very clear, so those fishing shallow will want to run their lines far behind the boat.

Rockport – One dock was installed at the boat launch.

Alpena – The walleye action is just getting started.

Thunder Bay River – Steelhead and suckers are being caught at the Ninth Street Dam when using live and artificial spawn or black colored flies. A good number of walleye are being caught by those seeking steelhead, but walleye season does not open until Saturday.

Harrisville – Boat anglers are starting to catch a few walleye in the evening when trolling both north and south of the boat launch. Try rapalas in 10 to 20 feet of water. A few lake trout have also been caught but the season does not open until May 1st.

Oscoda – Pier anglers are getting a few walleye.

Au Sable River – Steelhead are in the river with catches reported both upstream and down towards the mouth.

Tawas – Boat anglers were taking fair numbers of walleye and a few brown trout when trolling body baits. Pier anglers were taking a mix of walleye, whitefish, and small perch.

Au Gres – Boat anglers fishing just off the mouth of the river were taking excellent catches of walleye, with many limits.

Au Gres River – A fair number of steelhead were caught in the lower Whitney Drain and in the surf. Most were drifting or floating spawn sacks.

Rifle River – Reported good steelhead action.

Higgins Lake – Has open water and the boats are starting to head out for perch.

Houghton Lake – The crappie fishing is hot with lots of fish being caught in the canals. As for bluegills, the males are starting to fan the bottom of the lake as they prepare the nest for spawning.

Budd Lake – In Clare County had good perch fishing.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Traverse City – Good fishing in the West Bay. Whitefish are being caught in 250 feet of water. Boat anglers have caught a lot of lake trout and some brown trout out from the Maritime Academy. Perch are still hitting in Suttons Bay. Try fishing just off the bottom in 45 to 65 feet of water.

Boardman River – Has a good number of steelhead in it. Fly anglers may do better as both the Hendrickson and Caddis hatches are underway. Walleye are moving into the river but the season does not open until Saturday.

Big Glen Lake – Has good perch fishing.

Platte River – Steelhead numbers should be good for the weekend.

Frankfort – Pier fishing has been good with lots of steelhead being caught, and more brown trout are starting to show up. Both piers have been good when using spawn. Boats trolling in the harbor are also catching fish on body baits and small spoons.

Manistee – Should have fair to good fishing for steelhead, brown trout, menominee and walleye. Perch were caught off the pier.

Manistee River – Look for steelhead up near Tippy Dam. Best baits have been spawn, yarn, flies, wax worms or small body baits. Suckers are still being caught.

Lake Cadillac – Has very good crappie fishing off the M-115 causeway.

Hamlin Lake – Has good fishing for bluegills, crappie and bullhead.

Ludington – Steelhead, brown trout, and menominee are being caught off the piers.

Pere Marquette Lake – Perch were caught in 15 to 20 feet of water along the southwest shore.

Pere Marquette River – The mayfly hatch has not started yet but it should not be long. There are a lot of suckers in the river.

Pentwater – Pier fishing slowed as most of the steelhead are in the river and the brown trout have not come in yet in big numbers. The walleye are just starting to show up at the piers. Anglers can use the boat launches, but the docks were not in as of this report.

Upper Peninsula

Keweenaw Bay – Trout fishing picked up in the Falls River, but has been slow off the pier. Those out trolling for salmon reported no success. One steelhead was caught off the pier in Traverse Bay. There has been no smelt activity to report.

Marquette – Coho were caught at the bubblers but the action has been slow. There has been little action at the coal dock, but those putting in the time have caught some whitefish, splake and coho.

Carp River – Is currently running high and fast. The upper and lower harbor launch ramps are open.

Little Bay De Noc – Still had ice north of the Narrows, but it is melting fast. The north shore boat launch is open but no other ramps were in use. No word on steelhead yet. Rivers in the area are running high and fast.

Big Bay De Noc – Has open water. Ramps will be in place just as soon as the road restrictions are lifted. Rivers around the bay are running high and fast.

Au Train – There was still ice and snow at the Brownstone boat launch. Those casting spinners from the rocks had little action. Anglers were doing fair at the mouth of the Rock River when floating spawn bags for steelhead. Coho action was slow.

Munising – Smelt were taken off Sand Point when jigging 10 to 45 feet down in 50 feet of water. Try using small jigs with a piece of wax worm, earth worm, minnow or cut bait. Coho, splake and whitefish have been caught when fishing off the dock, wading or using a small boat at the mouth of the Anna River.

St. Mary’s River – Steelhead were caught when trolling chrome colored flatfish, but the lake trout were not biting. Perch fishing was slow. The docks are now in at the Osborn Boat Launch which is located at the Soo.

DeTour – A few anglers are targeting smelt in Albany Creek.

Cedarville and Hessel – Some nice yellow perch were caught in Musky Bay when using minnows, wax worms or wigglers in 6 to 7 feet of water.

Nunn’s Creek – Located off St. Martins Bay, reported fair to good smelt action.

Carp River – Smelt dippers were getting a few fish off the Old Mackinaw Trail.