Blue Ribbon Trout Streams

Michigan is blessed with an abundance of cold, quality trout waters offering 38,000 plus miles of rivers and streams, including over 20,000 miles of classified trout streams. About 850 miles are considered premier top-quality streams, which Michigan once classified as its Blue Ribbon Trout Streams.

While no longer officially designated by Michigan, the standards for a Blue Ribbon Trout Stream still hold true.. It must be one of Michigan’s best trout streams, be able to support excellent stocks of wild resident trout, have the physical characteristics to permit fly casting but be shallow enough to wade, produce diverse insect life and good fly hatches, have earned a reputation for providing an excellent (quality) trout fishing experience, and have excellent water quality.

Blue Ribbon Trout Streams in lower Michigan

Stream and County Upstream Limit Downstream Limit Miles
14. AuGres, East Branch; Iosco Co. Junction of Hale Creek and Smith Creek Whittemore Road 12
15. AuSable, Main Branch; Crawford and Oscoda Co. Upper Section: Co. 612
Lower Section: Mio Dam
Upper Section: Luzerne Co. Pk.
Lower Section: Alcona Line
16. AuSable, North Branch; Crawford and Otsego Co. Dam No. 2 Main Branch AuSable 24
17. AuSable, South Branch; Crawford and Roscommon Co. Roscommon Main Branch AuSable 19
18. AuSable, East Branch; Crawford Co. Lewiston Grade Road Main Branch AuSable 7
19. Baldwin Creek; Lake Co. 24th Street Pere Marquette River 12
20. Bear Creek; Manistee Co.
Wild and Scenic River
Junction with 3rd Creek Nine Mile Road 15
21. Big Creek, West and East Branches; Crawford Co. East Branch: County Line
West Branch: Townline Road
N. Branch AuSable
N. Branch AuSable
22. Big Creek, Middle, West and East Branches; Oscoda Co. West Branch: Junction with Hunt Creek
East Branch: T25N, R2E, Sec. 6
Main Branch AuSable
Mail Branch AuSable
23. Black River;
Cheboygan, Presque Isle, Montmorency and Otsego Co.
McKinnon’s Bend Cheboygan/Presque Isle County Line 41
24. Black River, East Branch; Montmorency Co. T31, R1E, Sec. 26 Junction with Black River, Main Branch 13
25. Boardman River; Grand Traverse Co. Junction with N. & S. Branches T26N, R11W, Sec. 3 18
26. Boardman River, N. Br.; Grand Traverse and Kalkaska Co. Junction with Crafton Creek T26N, R9W, Sec. 4 10
27. Boardman River, S. Br.;Grand Traverse and Kalkaska Co. Boardman River Road T26N, R9W, Sec. 4 8
28. Boyne River; Charlevoix Co. North Branch: Hudson Rd.
Main Branch: Metros Rd.
T32N, R5W, Sec. 8
T32N, R5W, Sec. 8
29. Canada Creek; Presque Isle and Montmorency Co. Junction with Montague Creek Cheboygan County Line 12
30. Cedar River; Antrim Co. Stover Pond Bellaire 4
31. Cedar River; Clare & Gladwin Co. Junction with Mid. Br. Bard Road (Gladwin Co.) 3.5
32. Clam River; Missaukee Co. Wexford Co. Line Turnerville Road 19
33. Gilchrist Creek; Montmorency Co. Branch of Greasey Creek Thunder Bay River 8
34. Hunt Creek; Montmorency Co. Research Station Thunder Bay River 10
35. Jordan River; Antrim Co. Junction with Green River Charlevoix Co. Line 9
36. Little Manistee River; Mason and Lake Co. County Road 633 Manistee Co. Line 31
37. Manistee River; Kalkaska and Crawford Co. Deward Area Junction with North Branch Big Manistee 36
38. Manistee River, North Branch; Kalkaska Co. Mecum Road Junction with Big Manistee 4
39. Maple River; Emmet Co. Maple River Dam Cheboygan Co. Line 4
40. Middle Branch River; Osceola Co. T20N, R7W, Sec. 19 Marion Pond 6
41. Pere Marquette River; Mason and Lake Co. Broadway Road (USFS Road 5132) Indian Bridge 39
42. Pere Marquette River, Little South Branch; Lake and Newaygo Co. Curtis Bridge Pere Marquette River 9.5
43. Pigeon River; Cheboygan and Otsego Co. T32N, R2W, Sec. 25-26 Boundary M-68 31
44. Pine River; Manistee, Lake and Osceola Co.
Wild and Scenic River
Juncture of North and East Branch of Pine Tippy Pond 57
45. Platte River; Benzie Co. Maple City Road Honor 6
46. Sable, Big; Mason and Lake Co. USFS Road 51199 USFS Road 5205 12
47. Sturgeon River; Cheybogan and Otsego Co. Sturgeon Valley Road Burt Lake 21
48. Sturgeon River, West Branch; Cheboygan Co. Wilderness Road Sturgeon River 12
49. White River, Newaygo Co. USFS Road 5276 Baseline Road at White Cloud 7.5


Blue Ribbon Trout Streams in upper Michigan


Stream and County Upstream Limit Downstream Limit Miles
1. Brule River; Iron Co. M-73 M-189 12.5
2. Cooks Run; Iron Co. US-2 Paint River 6
3. Fence River; Iron Co. Junction with E. Branch T45N, R13W, Sec. 35 12
4. Ford River; Dickinson Co. T43N, R30W, Sec 15 Henderson 16
5. Fox River; Schoolcraft Co. Spring Pond Seney 18
6. Fox River, East Branch; Schoolcraft Co. M-77 Luce County Line 15
7. Iron River; Iron Co. Raft Lake Iron River 12.5
8. Ontonagon River, East Branch; Houghton Co. Lower Dam Falls Sparrow Rapids 13
9. Ontonagon River, Middle Branch; Gogebic and Ontonagon Co. Uppper Section: R45N, R39W, Sec. 19
Lower Section: Bond Falls
Upper Section: Ontonagon Co. Line
Lower Section: M-28
10. Paint River; Iron Co. USFS Road 149 Gibbs City 18
11. Sturgeon River, West Branch; Houghton Co. W. Br. Sturgeon Falls M-38 5
12. Tahquamenon River, East Branch; Chippewa Co. Strongs Corner T46N, R7W, Sec. 9 (near Buckhorn Camp) 19
13. Two Hearted River; Luce Co. T48N, R12W, Sec. 12 Junction with East Branch Two Hearted River 36

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