Weekly Fishing Report

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NOTE TO ANGLERS: This report is intended to give anglers an idea of fishing conditions around the state. The updates come from a combination of creel clerks and other DNR staff around the state and reflect past fishing conditions over the last seven days. Due to the nature of the Great Lakes, fishing conditions on them can change daily if not hourly based on wind and rain events.

Thursday, October 20, 2016
Weekly Fishing Report

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Southeast Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Southwest Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Northeast Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Northwest Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Upper Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Southwest Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Southeast Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Northeast Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Northwest Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Upper Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Upper Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report

Click in the map above to find your weekly fishing report by region.

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Windy conditions have kept anglers off the Great Lakes for the most part. While the salmon are turning dark in many areas, steelhead fishing is picking up as more fish are starting to move up into the rivers.

Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake Erie: Yellow perch fishing was hot. When anglers were able to find a good school they caught more and bigger fish. Most are using shiners on perch rigs in 15 to 19 feet straight out of Bolles Harbor and around the E-Buoy, 19 to 23 feet near the River Raisin Buoys, and 20 to 24 feet off Stony Point. Good numbers of fish were also found in 14 to 18 feet off the Erie Consumers Plant, Toledo Beach Marina and the mansion. Anglers also caught white perch and white bass. Shore anglers fishing the lagoons at Sterling State Park caught bluegills and largemouth bass on crawlers. Shore anglers at Pointe Mouillee caught yellow perch and a couple largemouth bass on perch or crappie rigs with shiners.

Huron River: A couple small steelhead were caught up near Flat Rock.

Detroit River: Yellow perch reports keep getting better. Fish were hitting on perch rigs and spreaders with minnows in 10 to 14 feet. Orange was the hot color. Those fishing the deepest waters in the channels are still taking walleye on a jig tipped with a minnow or wax worm. Dark colored Wyandotte worms were also taking fish. Shore anglers are starting to catch bluegills and perch.

Oakland County: Panfish anglers on Cass and Union Lake were taking good numbers of bluegill and the occasional crappie. While some found fish around the weedy flats, others were suspended in 20 feet. Waxworms, crawlers or minnows under a bobber worked best. Bass anglers were not doing as well but fish were caught on top-water lures in the morning and along the flats in evening. Those drifting or trolling for pike and walleye are marking good numbers on the deep side of the drop-offs but catching them was not easy.

Lake St. Clair: Smallmouth bass were caught around 12 Mile Road in 8 feet while drop-shotting a rubber worm and around Fords Cove in 7 feet while casting crankbaits. Muskie were caught around the Clinton River Cut-Off launch in 10 feet while casting medusas. Good yellow perch catches out from the Grosse Pointe Yacht Club in 15 feet, out from the 400 Club in 12 to 14 feet and three miles out from the Clinton River Cut-Off when still-fishing or drifting emerald shiners on perch rigs. On the north end, anglers fishing near Harley Ensign and Fairhaven moved into the canals and caught a good number of bluegills and crappie when still-fishing and drifting live bait. A decent number of walleye were taken by those drifting minnows near the mouth of the North Channel. Smallmouth fishing was slow with only a couple fish found in 8 to 10 feet between Harley Ensign and Selfridge. A couple legal size muskies were also caught. Perch fishing was decent near the channel when using minnows.

St. Clair River: Anglers were still taking some walleye near Algonac. Those fishing up near Port Huron have caught a couple steelhead.

Lexington and Port Sanilac: Atlantic salmon continue to converge on Lexington Harbor, but they can be hard to catch. Night fishing was more productive. Most are casting spoons, body baits, or spinners but others were floating spawn under a bobber. There are Atlantics up to 10 pounds in the harbor right now. Steelhead, walleye and pike were also showing up. A few perch were caught off the docks in the morning. At Port Sanilac, walleye and a couple steelhead were caught off the north pier after dark.

Harbor Beach: Some walleye were caught off the north pier after dark.

Port Austin: Some walleye were caught off the north pier when casting spoons and body baits at night. A few perch were taken on minnows at the mouth of Bird Creek.

Saginaw Bay: Perch continue to be caught between the Pinconning and Saganing Bars, out of Gambil's Marina near Pinconning, in 16 feet off Linwood, near the sailboat buoys, 14 feet off the Bay City State Park, near Spoils Island and at various places along the shipping channel. Moving east, some perch were taken out of the mouth of the drain at Finn Road. Perch fishing was spotty in 7 to 12 feet off the mouth of the Quanicassee River. Early morning until about 11AM was best. Shore anglers caught mostly small fish. Fishing in the Sebewaing River will pick up again after the river is flushed by rain and fish move back in from Saginaw Bay. At Geiger Road, boat anglers reported good catches off the mouth of Dutcher's Cut in 7 feet. Bay Port had some excellent smallmouth bass fishing in Wildfowl Bay with fish up to 5 pounds taken on tube jigs in 4 to 8 feet. A few shore anglers targeting perch at the mouth of Mud Creek were not getting any keepers.

Saginaw River: Perch are being caught at the mouth, off Bay Harbor Marina, and near the train bridge. Walleye are also starting to show up near the train bridge, across from the U.S.S. Edson, and under the Independence Bridge.

Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Inland lakes in this area of the state are producing perch, bluegills and crappie. Anglers were using minnows and worms 10 to 12 feet down.

St. Joseph: Had few anglers because of the strong winds. No boat anglers were out. Pier fishing for salmon and steelhead was slow. Most anglers caught smallmouth bass and freshwater drum when casting spoons. No perch to report.

St. Joseph River: Still had no big reports on salmon. Many are targeting walleye which have been caught in fair to good numbers.

South Haven: Had no boats out and no perch reports. Pier fishing was slow except for freshwater drum hitting on crawlers. Those using spawn on the bottom caught catfish.

Kalamazoo River: Anglers continue to take lake trout and salmon all the way up to the Allegan Dam. Some were caught on bright colored spinners and small spoons while others were caught on flies or fresh spawn.

Grand Haven: When the weather allowed, steelhead and young salmon were caught 20 to 100 feet down in 120 to 180 feet. Orange spoons have done well along with white paddles and white flies. Pier and shore fishing were slow with only a couple steelhead taken on salmon spawn. The south pier is closed to the public and will reopen the summer of 2017.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Is producing some steelhead. Anglers are using salmon spawn, Hot-n-Tots, spoons and flies.

Rogue River: Has salmon up near the dam. Steelhead can be found throughout the river between the mouth and Rockford.

Grand River at Lansing: Pike and smallmouth bass are there for the taking. Good pike action has been cited at the North Lansing Dam and around Old Town. Anglers are using golden shiners and sucker minnows. Smallmouth bass are being caught throughout the area. No salmon or steelhead reports.

Muskegon: A couple pier anglers tried catching steelhead but no fish were reported. The south breakwall is closed for repairs.

Muskegon River: Salmon fishing improved with the higher water levels and more fish moving in after the last rain. Anglers reported brown trout and a few more steelhead in the river. Anglers are using spawn, spinners and flies.

Whitehall: Anglers casting crankbaits and drifting minnows caught northern pike in the channel. Steelhead and brown trout fishing remain slow.

White Lake: Perch and bluegills were caught on dropper rigs tipped with wax worms in 8 to 20 feet.

White River: Anglers caught some salmon all the way up to the Hesperia Dam while drifting spawn or egg flies.

Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Cheboygan River: Had a lot of anglers fishing for salmon. Some did very well; some caught nothing while others were taking 1 to 3 fish per trip. Fresh caught skein or spawn drifted under a bobber or bottom bouncing caught the most fish but those casting bright colored or glow stick baits managed to take a couple as well. Best times were early morning, after sundown or on cloudy days. A few pike, perch, smallmouth bass and walleye were also caught. No steelhead reports.

Mullett Lake: Water temperatures were still up around 59 degrees which is warm for this time of year. Perch fishing is holding steady in front of the Indian River. Most were 9 to 12 inches but some caught a few up to 14 inches. Smallmouth bass fishing is slow; most anglers are only getting 5 fish for 8 hours of fishing. The few boats out walleye fishing caught a couple fish. Fishing pressure for steelhead was light.

Rogers City: Had little fishing effort and those heading out had a hard time finding baitfish. Rain and windy conditions have the lake stirred up. Try waters 70 feet and deeper and look for a scum line on the surface. For steelhead, run lines with orange spoons throughout the water column.

Presque Isle: Weather has been a real issue. The fish are there if anglers can get out. Try north between the two lighthouses and run lines up and down the water column in 50 to 130 feet. Look for bug slicks on the surface to find steelhead and Atlantic salmon.

Thunder Bay River: A couple salmon were caught up near the Ninth Street Dam.

Oscoda: Chinook salmon fishing was slow off the piers. Fish can be seen jumping, but they won't strike. Walleye are being taken on spoons and body baits after dark. A couple steelhead were also caught.

Houghton Lake: Anglers were getting bluegills and rock bass. The walleye action was slow but a few were caught in shallow waters.

Tawas: A few perch are starting to show up in the state harbor but anglers are doing a lot of sorting to find some keepers. Boats fishing near and inside Jerry's Marina took some decent catches of perch last week.

Tawas River: A couple chinook salmon were caught but the action was slow.

Au Gres: Had good perch fishing in 50 feet near the Gravelly Shoals and out near the NOAA Weather Buoy. At Eagle Bay Marina, boats fishing for perch did very well in 7 to 10 feet between the Saganing and the Pinconning Bars. Shore anglers caught some nice bluegills inside the marina. The Pine River has started producing some perch for shore anglers but they are sorting out the small ones. Keepers were 7 to 8 inches.

Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Petoskey: Boats were not able to get out. A few salmon and lake trout were caught off the end of the piers however anglers are reminded that lake trout season in the waters of Lake Michigan is closed.

Bear River: Water levels were fairly high. Rain usually brings the salmon in but the last couple events have not resulted in any big pushes of fish. There are still a few chinook and coho around but many are turning dark. A few more lake trout were in the river and caught between the mouth and the dam when using fresh skein, spawn bags, artificial eggs and flies.

Charlevoix: Had light fishing activity for salmon near the cement plant. Those trying were lucky to get one fish when casting spoons or crank baits in the slip. Pier anglers fishing the channel were targeting smallmouth bass with both real and artificial crawlers. Angler pressure and catch rates have dropped. The last harvest of the season at the Medusa Weir will most likely take place the end of this week.

Traverse City: The lake herring bite continues to be good at the south end of East Bay when jigging 80 to 90 feet down in 100 to 130 feet. Although slow, smallmouth anglers caught some nice fish at various depths. On the Elk River, anglers have caught a mix of salmon and steelhead on spawn at the dam. Bass and the odd perch were also caught.

Boardman River: Chinook salmon are still being caught along with the occasional brown trout and coho. Only a few lake trout were caught but the fish are starting to make their way into the river.

Frankfort: Anglers fishing the north breakwall and the south pier in Elberta have caught several steelhead but most were undersize. Fish were hitting on fresh spawn near the elbow in the early morning and at dusk.

Betsie River: Anglers continue to pick up a few chinook near the Homestead Dam.

Portage Lake: Anglers are still picking up perch and bluegills in decent numbers however they are also sorting through several small ones to find the keepers. Most are using minnows and worms.

Lakes Cadillac and Mitchell: Anglers caught largemouth bass and pike on Lake Cadillac. The bass were hitting top-water lures in the early morning. Pike were hitting on crank baits or large minnows. Lake Mitchell was producing panfish.

Manistee: Surface water temperatures were 56 degrees. Very few boats have been out. Pier anglers have caught steelhead.

Manistee Lake: The buoys were removed from the lake on Friday October 14th so the entire lake is now open to fishing. Angling pressure was light but some have caught a couple steelhead.

Big Manistee River: Anglers are starting to see more chinook that are spawned out. Most were taking a mixed bag of chinook, coho and steelhead up near Tippy Dam. The lower stretch between High Bridge and the lake was producing fewer chinook and coho but more steelhead. Salmon skein was producing more steelhead than crank baits or spinners. Salmon were hitting on skein, crank baits and flies.

Ludington: Pier anglers are catching steelhead on fresh spawn. Those surfcasting have also caught fish.

Pere Marquette River: Anglers are catching steelhead and brown trout between Custer and the twin bridges at US-31. Most are using spawn and beads.

Pentwater: Anglers drifting minnows between the piers caught northern pike and smallmouth bass.

Pentwater Lake: Those fishing from Longbridge Road caught northern pike on crankbaits and yellow perch on crawlers.

Upper Peninsula Fishing Report

Menominee River: Had a run of walleye from Stephenson Island to the Hattie Street Dam. Anglers are using stick baits, fishing the current and drifting a minnow or crawler. A few brown trout and steelhead along with a couple chinook salmon were caught on spoons and stick baits below the Hattie Street Dam.

Little Bay De Noc: Anglers have marked and reported a few catches of walleye in the southern bay from Breezy Point south to Round Island when trolling crawler harnesses or stick baits in 10 to 18 feet. Good pike action in the Escanaba Yacht Harbor or the south end of the "Black Bottom" in 10 to 20 feet when trolling spoons, crank baits or spinners. The best perch fishing was between the Second and Third Reefs and up near the Day's River with minnows in 10 to 18 feet.

Big Bay De Noc: Had few anglers but those targeting smallmouth bass did best using minnows or plastics in and around 22 feet off Garden Bluff. A few were looking for perch in Garden Bay but no reports yet.

Marquette: Had no reports from boat anglers as many have pulled their boats or windy conditions have made it difficult to get out. Steelhead up to 6 pounds were running in the Carp River. The Chocolay River has given up a few coho for those using spinners and spawn.

Munising: Very few coho salmon have been caught in the area and those boats fishing off the river caught mainly splake. A few in Bay Furnace caught some steelhead but no coho. Surface water temperatures are now in the upper 50's. The main activity has been at the Anna River Dock where anglers were doing better catching splake 18 to 21 inches and a few up to 22 but many were undersize. The Anna River was very high and stained which makes fishing more difficult. The males are quite vibrant and have the pronounced hooked jaws. Anglers were using spawn bags off the dock. Those hoping for a salmon caught the occasional splake when casting florescent spoons. Fall colors here have peaked with vibrant colors.

Grand Marais: Most anglers are shore fishing or in small boats within the harbor and near the mouth of the Sucker River. Surface water temperatures were in the upper 50's and catch rates for steelhead picked up with fish up to 9 pounds but no reports of any coho. Most are using spawn bags but a few had luck when trolling or casting spoons. Orange and chartreuse were the hot colors. Water levels on the Sucker River were high after all the rain so be sure to bring waders.

Two Hearted River: The salmon run is still on the light side but some anglers have caught silver fish. Steelhead are moving into the river. Expect higher than normal water levels and water clarity will be an issue after the recent heavy rains.

St. Marys River: A few walleye and lake trout were caught at the mouth when the weather stabilized. Two miles up from Detour Village, two different boats caught walleye at Swedes Pointe when trolling blue and chrome or fire-tiger reef runners with planer boards set at 8 feet in 14 feet of water. Others used crawler harnesses and bottom bouncers with red and white beads in 12 feet over the humps at Swedes Pointe. Near Drummond Island, yellow perch were caught off the weed beds in 8 to 13 feet at Arrow Island which is due east of Fair Banks Pointe. Try shiners or popcorn shrimp. If the mild north winds continue the rest of this week, baitfish could move into the area around Pigeon Cove and Fair Banks.

Detour: Light north winds at the Detour Lighthouse allowed one angler to troll for salmon and trout in and around Detour Reef. A few lake trout were caught by those trolling from Fry Pan Island to just south of the ferry boat dock in Detour Village and out to the green buoy. The fish were hitting on chrome and black spoons about 60 feet down in 80 feet. The thermocline was 55 degrees at 60 feet down.

Cedarville and Hessel: The Les Cheneaux Islands are producing perch but anglers have to work at it and keep moving around to locate schools of fish. The best places to try are the north end of Snows Channel, behind Dollar Island, Muskie Bay at Rice Point, Middle Entrance and along the south shore. Perch may also be found around Little Joe and the west end of Government Bay just as you are entering the bay. Pike fishing is also good in these areas along with Urie Bay and the Viking Channel. Pike and splake were caught in the marina in the early morning.

St. Ignace: Had little to no fishing activity on Lake Huron. The salmon run on the Carp River appears to be winding down. There are few pink salmon left and only a couple chinook that are near the end of their cycle. There have been no signs of any steelhead showing up yet. A few chinook were seen off the mouth of Nunn's Creek.

Enjoy your catch! Eat safe fish! Learn about eating safe, local and healthful fish from our Great Lakes State at: Michigan.gov/eatsafefish.