Michigan DNR Fishing Report for October 16, 2019

Southwest Lower Peninsula

St. Joseph River: A few bass and walleye were caught by those trolling. There was still a fair number of salmon and steelhead going through the fish ladder at Berrien Springs. Fishing pressure at the dam was low.

Dowagiac River: Had a decent number of salmon. Both salmon and steelhead were caught below the dam at Pucker Street.

Black River: A couple salmon were caught by those casting spoons.

Kalamazoo River: Those drifting spawn or flies caught salmon near the Allegan Dam.

Muskegon River: Rain and cooler temperatures helped push a decent number of salmon up into the river. Some large fish have been taken by those casting crank baits floating skein and beads. Those fly fishing have done well during the day. The occasional steelhead and brown trout were also caught.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Cheboygan River: Salmon fishing was starting to slow, but anglers still caught some fish at the dam with spoons, crank baits and skein. The better catches came at dusk. Some reported steelhead jumping at the dam but there were no reports of fish caught. Boat anglers targeting smallmouth bass had success with soft baits near the cutter and the ferry parking lot.

Thunder Bay River: Those targeting salmon and trout caught a few Chinook, Atlantic and brown trout when floating or drifting skein, spawn bags, beads and flies, or when casting spoons and crank baits. The Atlantic bite was very slow as the fish were reluctant to hit. Most of the Chinook were dark but a few keepers could still be found. Early morning and evening were best. The occasional walleye was caught on body baits around dusk. Those trolling crank baits caught a couple northern pike. A small number of yellow perch were taken on minnows in the slower water near the mouth, but size and numbers were not consistent.

Au Sable River: Chinook salmon were caught by those drifting flies and spawn bags or casting spoons and spinners. The condition of the fish was deteriorating, and the numbers weren’t great. A couple steelhead entered the river and the odd fish was taken on spawn bags behind the beds. Atlantic salmon numbers were increasing, but the bite remained slow. A couple were taken on spinners or flies, but spawn bags, skein and beads should also take fish. Those casting jigs and crank baits down near the mouth caught the occasional walleye, pike and smallmouth bass. Water temperatures below Foote Dam dropped into the high 50’s. Anglers swinging and stripping streamers between Mio and McKinley Bridge caught brown trout.

Tawas River: A few walleye were caught at night when casting body baits at Gateway Park. Chinook salmon were seen but none were caught.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Bear River: Did see a push of salmon after the heavy rain and anglers managed to land a couple Chinook and coho. Many were turning quite dark however a few fresh fish were also hooked. Anglers were using spawn, artificial eggs, yarn and flies. A few lake trout showed up over the last week.

Betsie River: Was producing a fair number of coho.

Manistee River: Continued to produce some salmon though the fish are quite dark.

Pere Marquette River: Water levels were receding in the upper stretches, but the lower stretches were still high. Anglers continue to catch some large Chinook. The rain will certainly help not only the salmon, but the fall steelhead runs as well.

Upper Peninsula

Manistique River: Was too fast to fish near the dam after all the rain. There were a lot of hook-ups in the fast water, but few were landed. Many of the large salmon were quite dark but the younger fish were still somewhat silver. Most were fishing the “Bass Hole” area and reported fair to good catches of Chinook, steelhead and brown trout when casting spawn, skein or crank baits. Fly anglers were casting yarn, flies or beads.

Two Hearted River: Continued to produce some coho.

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