Michigan DNR Fishing Report for March 29

Anglers are reminded that on Sunday, April 1 all anglers 17 years of age and older will be required to have a new 2018 Michigan fishing license. Be sure to look at a copy of the 2018 Michigan Fishing Guide for new regulations that go into effect on April 1 – you can download it from Michigan.gov/dnrdigests.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

Dowagiac River: Anglers are catching steelhead at the Pucker Street Dam.

St. Joseph River: Has a good number of steelhead and fish are moving onto the gravel for spawning. Spawn bags, skein and plugs have all worked especially up near the Berrien Springs Dam. Some limit catches were reported.

Kalamazoo River: Also has a good number of steelhead.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Has a good number of steelhead with spawning fish moving to the gravel.

 

Muskegon River: Boat and shore anglers are getting some steelhead but the action was still on the slow side with water temperatures in the mid 30’s.

White River: Steelhead fishing picked up with fresh fish moving in.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Overall: Steelhead fishing was slow on some of the local rivers. Anglers were still ice fishing on some lakes, but extreme caution needs to used, as ice conditions are questionable.

Cheboygan River: Those using spawn at the dam were taking steelhead.

Pigeon River: Anglers were starting to fish for steelhead but most caught brown trout that had to be released.

 

Thunder Bay River: Is open water and conditions are right for steelhead fishing. The marina is still frozen but the Fletcher Street ramp is open. Not a lot of runoff yet so the river is still pretty fishable. The dam will likely be opened with the first real warm weather we get and that could make fishing more difficult. Up until freeze up last fall, Atlantic salmon were being caught regularly in the old ‘turning basin’ in the river and it is likely they are still there. Try casting from the walkway along LaMarre Park in Alpena.

Tawas River: Those drifting crawlers and spawn sacks were getting some steelhead.

Au Gres River: Steelhead anglers fishing at the Singing Bridge did well when drifting spawn sacks in the lower river. Surf fishing was nearly impossible due to the strong east winds.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Overall: Steelhead fishing was slow on some of the local rivers as water levels were still low and cold.

Betsie River: Angling activity continues to increase with steelhead being caught. Some brown trout were also caught and released as the season is closed.

Manistee: Pier and boat anglers have caught coho and brown trout. Steelhead were caught by pier anglers.

Big Manistee River: Fishing picked up over the last week as a good number of fresh fish were moving in up near Tippy Dan, anglers reported a decent bite that was best in the morning. Those on the north bank did well floating spawn while those on the south bank had luck with beads and flies.

Pere Marquette River: Steelhead fishing is picking up with fresh fish moving in.

Pentwater River: Has steelhead.

 

Michigan DNR fishing report for March 22

 

Southwest Lower Peninsula

St. Joseph River: Water levels have dropped and the steelhead fishing should only get better as the weather improves and water temperatures begin to warm. Boat and shore anglers are getting some fish.

Kalamazoo River: Anglers caught steelhead and walleye up near the Allegan Dam. A fair number of suckers have also been caught.

Grand Haven: Pier anglers were getting the occasional steelhead. Boat anglers caught some perch south of the piers in 50 to 55 feet.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Water levels are back to normal and anglers are still getting some steelhead. Some perch were caught in Felix Bayou near Spring Lake.

Rogue River: Water levels are low. Steelhead anglers caught fish one day and none the next.

Grand River at Lansing: Did not have much to report. The odd steelhead was caught but the fish are scattered and catch rates were not consistent. A couple fish were spotted at the North Lansing Dam.

Muskegon: Pier anglers caught some steelhead and brown trout but the action was not fast and furious by any means.

Muskegon River: Steelhead numbers are slowly picking up but will remain on the slow side until it warms up. Some perch were caught above the Davis Bridge.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Cheboygan River: Had a couple anglers fishing at the dam but the bite was poor and no fish were seen.

Au Sable River: Is running low and clear. Those using streamers in the lower river should find a small number of steelhead in the late morning or afternoons when it warms up.

Tawas: Pier anglers did catch some Atlantic salmon and lake trout with large minnows or when casting various lures. Boats trolling and vertical jigging down near Alabaster were getting both lake trout and walleye in 10 to 20 feet.

Tawas River: Shore anglers fishing downstream of US-23 did catch a couple steelhead and a few suckers.

Au Gres: Walleye were staging just off the river mouth and those trolling were doing well including some that were taking limit catches.

Au Gres River: Those fishing down at the Singing Bridge (Whitney Drain) caught some steelhead and one Atlantic salmon in the lower river and in the surf.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Overall: Fishing conditions were not ideal. The rivers are low, clear and cold which is making it tough for anglers to target steelhead. While the inland lakes still had some ice, the thickness is variable and those planning to head out will need to use extreme caution.

Boardman River: Was producing some steelhead for those using spawn, a jig and wax worm or small spinners.

Manistee: When they can get out, boat anglers are finding some coho and brown trout when trolling in shallow waters along the beach. Pier anglers were picking up a couple steelhead and brown trout as well.

Big Manistee River: Anglers are trying and catching a few trout but fishing conditions have not been angler friendly. Those fishing the lower river reported decent fishing. Catch rates should improve in the next few weeks.

Ludington: A few hardy anglers trolling or pier fishing caught steelhead and brown trout. Those trolling were in 10 to 20 feet along the beach.

Pere Marquette River: Water temperatures in the 30’s have slowed fishing. A warm up next week should help to get the bite going again. Anglers were using spawn, wax worms, and beads.

Spring Time = Streamer Time!

As the snow begins to melt and the spring slowly creeps upon us, most anglers dream of a big steelhead that returns to the rivers of North West Michigan. To others it means the chance of a Trophy Brown Trout that legends are made of!

When winter begins to loosen it’s

Michigan DNR fishing report for March 15

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Overall: The return of winter has slowed things down. River steelhead fishing is decent in the lower stretches. Water levels were low and clear levels which makes fishing a little more difficult. Ice on the inland lakes is unpredictable. Caution needs to be used.

Bear River: In Emmet County had reports of some steelhead starting to run.

Betsie River: Steelhead are being caught.

Manistee: Coho salmon and brown trout fishing is picking up for those trolling along the beach. There is one dock in at the First Street launch. Pier anglers caught a couple steelhead and brown trout.

Big Manistee River: Steelhead fishing is decent in the lower river.

Ludington: A few hardy anglers trolling or pier fishing caught steelhead and brown trout. Those trolling were in 10 to 20 feet along the beach.

Pere Marquette River: Steelhead fishing picked up from the Twin Bridges at US-31 to Lake County but cold temperatures have once again slowed the bite.

Pentwater River: Has steelhead for those braving the cold weather.

 

Southwest Lower Peninsula

Overall: Coho salmon and brown trout fishing was picking up in the waters south of St. Joseph. Most of the action came when trolling along the beach but some anglers were going out to 200 feet when the weather allowed.

St. Joseph River: Although river levels are still higher than normal, steelhead action was good as the fish ladders are open and steelhead could be seen. Boat anglers were doing best but shore anglers caught a few.

Dowagiac River: Anglers caught a couple steelhead up near the Pucker Street Dam.

Kalamazoo River: Water levels were still a bit high but anglers have caught steelhead and walleye up near the Allegan Dam.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Although river levels are still higher than normal, steelhead action was good with a number of fish observed at 6th Street. Walleye were also being caught at a slower pace but they are definitely in the river. Steelhead are being caught in Prairie Creek in Ionia County.

Rogue River: Is also producing some steelhead.

Muskegon: Pier anglers were getting the occasional steelhead.

Muskegon River: Water levels continue to drop and the water clarity was still stained. Steelhead fishing was good but the cold and snow will slow the bite.

White River: Steelhead were caught but the cold spell slowed the bite.

Continue reading “Michigan DNR fishing report for March 15”

A Girl with a Spey Rod

Women in fly fishing? Yes we all know that there has always been women in the game, and as time goes on, especially these days we are seeing more and more ladies on the water with the best of them. So, do women really fish? Do they really know what’s

Michigan DNR fishing report for March 8

Southeast Lower Peninsula

Huron River: Was producing some steelhead up near the dam. Anglers were using fresh spawn or a jig tipped with a wax worm.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

Overall: Coho salmon were starting to show up in the southern portion of Lake Michigan. New Buffalo and St. Joseph would be good places to start. Steelhead movement was good in the large river systems. The inland lakes were ice free for the most part.

St. Joseph River: Staff cleaning out the fish ladders reported good numbers of steelhead using the ladders at Berrien Springs and Niles.

Kalamazoo River: Had good steelhead movement.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Water levels are coming down and the river is fishable. Anglers were getting a good number of fish up near the Sixth Street Dam. Steelhead were hitting on spawn and a couple walleye were taken on a jig with a rubber tail, minnows or flatfish.

Rogue River: Was also producing some steelhead.

Muskegon River: Water levels continue to drop. Anglers will need to watch for debris coming down which is hard to see when the water is stained. Those casting have caught some very nice steelhead.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Tawas River: Shore anglers in the lower river caught a couple walleye or steelhead.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Overall: There was still some ice fishing taking place however those heading out need to use extreme caution. Steelhead fishing was so-so.

Anglers are catching a few winter fish, but the main spring run has not showed up yet. Reports have come in of brown trout caught off the piers along Lake Michigan.

Betsie River: Was producing some steelhead.

Big Manistee River: Some chrome colored steelhead were taken in the lower section of the river.

Ludington: Boat anglers were getting some nice catches of brown trout and a few coho when trolling along the beach in 10 to 15 feet. Pier anglers caught brown trout.

Pere Marquette River: Anglers were getting steelhead though the return of cold weather will slow the bite. Try fishing the deeper holes until it warms back up.

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