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, September 1, 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.

Click here to find the Great Lakes temperature map

Salmon are staging in some areas and are just starting to move up into some of the rivers. Those fishing the rivers are reminded that snagging is illegal. Bass and pike fishing has picked up with the cooler temperatures.


Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake Erie: Had decent yellow perch fishing with some reporting limit catches. Hot spots were 20 to 23 feet near the E-Buoy, 22 to 24 feet near Buoys 1 & 2 of the River Raisin and 22 to 25 feet near Stony Point. Most are using minnows especially emerald shiners on spreaders and perch rigs. Freshwater drum, catfish, white perch, and the occasional sub-legal walleye were also caught. Decent smallmouth action when jigging black and red tube baits near the mouth of the River Raisin and La Plaisance Bay. Those fishing from Evans Pier in Luna Pier caught freshwater drum, white perch, white bass and catfish on crawlers and cut bait. Shore anglers at Pointe Mouillee caught yellow perch, rock bass and sub-legal smallmouth bass on crawlers. Shore anglers at Sterling State Park caught bluegills and catfish on crawlers.

Detroit River: Anglers are getting a few yellow perch including the occasional bigger fish. Most of bigger ones are still in the lake but should be on the move with the cooler temperatures. A few walleye were caught but the action was still on the slow side.

Oakland County: Cass and Union Lake continue to produce a good number of bass and pike along with the occasional walleye. The better fishing was along the weedy flats and near the drop-offs. For bass, crayfish imitation baits on the bottom produced best. Some bluegills were caught in 6 to 10 feet on Cass Lake. Water temperatures are dropping but were still in the high 70's.

Lake St. Clair: Smallmouth bass anglers caught fish in 13 to 22 feet off 9-Mile Road. Bass and channel cats were caught when drifting worms about three miles out from the 400 Club. A decent number of yellow perch were taken in the shipping channel near Buoys 29 and 31 and near the L-Buoy when still-fishing or trolling minnows and crawlers however a large number were on the small side. The better fishing was in the early morning. Walleye fishing slowed which could be because of the weeds. Musky were caught at the mouth of the South Channel while fly fishing. On the north end, smallmouth bass were caught near Harley Ensign and largemouth were taken in the canals around Metro while casting tube baits and wacky worms. Rock bass were caught in 12 to 14 feet around Harley Ensign. Muskie were caught just east of the Baltimore Channel while casting a crank bait. Walleye were caught by those trolling between Munchie Bay and New Baltimore. A good number of perch were caught at the mouth of the North and South Channels.

Lexington to Port Sanilac: Those trolling were taking a mix of steelhead, walleye, Atlantic salmon and the occasional lake trout in 40 to 60 feet or 80 feet and deeper. The steelhead and Atlantics were coming on spoons in the top 1/3 of the water column. One 12 ½ pound Atlantic was taken off Port Sanilac. Pier fishing was slow.

Harbor Beach: Some nice lake trout were caught in 80 to 130 feet with dodgers and spin-glo's near the bottom or with downriggers and spoons 60 to 100 feet down. Hot colors were green, purple and blue alewives. A few salmon including pinks, coho, chinook and Atlantic were caught 15 to 80 feet down in 80 to 135 feet. Try some J-plugs. Steelhead were caught on bright colored spoons in 75 to 100 feet and walleye were taken on small spoons, thunder sticks and crawler harnesses. Look for bass close to shore when casting small body baits and spinners.

Port Austin: When the winds allowed, boat anglers caught lake trout in 80 to 120 feet when using spin-glo's near the bottom. Those off Grindstone City did the same.

Saginaw Bay: We are not hearing a whole lot about walleye fishing in the inner bay; the fish are scattered and the average catch is a couple of fish per trip. The Slot from Fish Point to the tip of Sand Point was still giving up a few fish for the diehards. Perch were caught at many locations, with the common denominator being that lots of sorting was necessary to get a mess of keepers. Good perch spots were 15 feet off Gambil's Marina, 20 feet at the Black Hole, sailboat Buoys A, G, and H, a mile west of the Spark Plug (shipping channel Buoys 11 & 12), 8 to 10 feet along the Callahan Reef and off the mouth of the Quanicassee River. A few fish were also found off the mouth of the Saginaw River and near Spoils Island. Catfish were hitting on crawlers and shrimp in the Hot Pond.

Saginaw River: Shore anglers caught mostly freshwater drum and catfish.


Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

St. Joseph: Boat anglers are catching decent numbers of lake trout and a few chinook salmon but catch rates were inconsistent. Most fish were taken on spoons in 90 to 100 feet. Perch fishing was a little slow with a few catches taken in 40 feet. Pier fishing was also slow.

St. Joseph River: Water levels continue to be very high and muddy after all the rain. Boat anglers should use caution and watch for floating debris.

South Haven: Salmon fishing was slower with only a few fish caught in 100 feet but most of those were lake trout. Perch and pier fishing were very slow.

Black River: Water levels here are also very high so boat anglers use caution.

Jordan Lake: In Barry County is producing bass and panfish.

Hutchins Lake: In Allegan County had limit catches of panfish in 20 feet with crickets.

Grand Haven: Pier anglers caught freshwater drum and channel cats on minnows. Removal of the catwalk on the south pier has begun and the pier was not accessible. Boat anglers found salmon 50 to 120 feet down in 100 to 180 feet with glow plugs, meat rigs and flies.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Look for walleye below the dams. Boat and shore anglers have found fish in the early morning or late evening. Those using crawlers and cut bait have caught catfish.

Grand River at Lansing: Continues to produce smallmouth bass for those casting spinners and tube baits or fly fishing. Those fishing near the dam at Moore's Park caught a few walleye.

Shiawassee River: Anglers caught smallmouth bass and rock bass at the Shiatown Dam near Vernon. Try live bait or artificial baits.

Muskegon: Boat anglers found trout and salmon 60 to 120 feet down in 70 to 180 feet when trolling a mix of glow plugs, meat rigs and flies. No pier fishing to report. The south pier at Pere Marquette Beach will be closed this week so temporary repairs can be made to the structure.

Whitehall: Anglers are catching salmon 30 to 90 feet down in 80 to 150 feet with orange and silver spoons, green plugs, and red or green meat rigs. Pier fishing for salmon was slow but should improve as cooler water moves in.

White Lake: Bluegill anglers had success using dropper rigs tipped with wax worms in 15 to 25 feet. Large and smallmouth bass were caught by those trolling crank baits along the drop-offs in 10 to 20 feet.


Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Mackinaw City: Boat anglers caught salmon and lake trout between Mackinac Island and Round Island.

Cheboygan: Most boats are targeting chinook in their normal staging areas in front of the Cheboygan River. Some boats reported 4 to 6 fish but most were 0 to 3. Lake trout, pink salmon and even a few pike were caught by those targeting salmon.

Cheboygan River: Had its first push of chinook salmon however there are only a few in there now. Most caught sub-legal smallmouth bass and walleye or a few rock bass.

Mullett Lake: Fishing was still slow but there is hope as water temperatures have dropped 6 degrees or more over the last week. Walleye anglers had limited success with a crawler harness or Hot-n-Tot. Many are small 13 inches or less. A few perch were caught in Pigeon River Bay and out from the Indian River but many were small. A few steelhead were caught 30 to 45 feet down in 60 to 100 feet near Long Point and Red Pine Point with small orange spoons.

Rogers City: Windy conditions are causing changes to fishing daily so more boats were heading out in the early morning or evening when the winds were calm. Chinook are honing in on Swan Bay and staging out in the deeper water. Best depths were 45 to 85 feet an hour before daylight or after sunset. Anglers are taking a mixed bag of lakers, pinks, Atlantics, steelhead and walleye throughout the water column but the better catches came from 25 to 65 feet down with spoons, flashers with flies, squid and cut bait or J-plugs off Calcite, Swan Bay and Adams Point. Hot colors were red and white, black and white, blue, green, orange, purple or glow early and late.

Presque Isle: Anglers continue to take trout, salmon and walleye. Most were moving out to deeper water where there is a little more stability especially after the early morning bite. Try 50 to 130 feet between the lighthouses. There are still a lot of lake trout so try fishing near the bottom.

Hubbard Lake: Anglers have caught some nice walleye.

Oscoda: Those trolling off the mouth of the Au Sable River have caught a few salmon on J-plugs in the early morning. Lake trout are also in the area. Pier anglers managed to catch a few walleye, smallmouth bass, pike, catfish and freshwater drum.

Au Sable River: The lower river was loaded with small gizzard shad which is a sure sign that fall is almost here.

Lake Margrethe: Was producing some walleye and bluegills.

Higgins Lake: Boat anglers will find lake trout in 80 to 100 feet. Some were caught on spoons and jointed body baits 40 feet down while others were found just off the bottom.

Houghton Lake: Continues to produce bluegills. Anglers were using crawlers, leeches and leaf worms. Walleye were caught by those trolling. Try a green, purple or blue crawler harness along the weed beds.

Lake St. Helen: Is producing northern pike and panfish.

Tawas: Those trolling for walleye were heading south and fishing in 50 to 65 feet off the Crib near Alabaster. Several limits were brought in and 10 to15 fish per boat was common. Fish were also caught lake ward of Buoy #2 in 35 to 70 feet. In addition to walleye, most boats were also taking the incidental steelhead on a crawler harness. Both species were hitting on crank baits and small spoons. Pier fishing was slow.

Tawas River: Shore anglers caught a few bass and pike.

Au Gres: Some perch were caught in Eagle Bay Marina and in 13 feet between the Saganing Bar and the Pinconning Bar. Some had 25 to 60 perch per boat. Good catches were also reported off White's Beach in 13 to 14 feet. There were also reports of a few walleye caught along the Pinconning Bay in 14 feet.


Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Harbor Springs: Although most boats fished the Petoskey side of the bay, a couple others were fishing Harbor Springs from mid Bay to around Harbor Point. Lake trout were caught on spoons about 150 feet down. There is warm water about 71 degrees all the way down to 100 feet. Anglers reported a thermocline about 150 feet down.

Petoskey: Boat anglers caught mainly lake trout along with a couple salmon. Most were fishing from the breakwall to Bay Harbor where lake trout were 125 to 150 feet down in 130 to 170 feet and the salmon were only 30 to 60 feet down. Spoons and cut bait were catching salmon. Pier anglers are now targeting salmon.

Bear River: Still had high water levels. Some fish did move in after the rain last week and those fishing spawn bags, artificial eggs and flies did take a few at the dam.

Charlevoix: Boat anglers did mark some fish 125 feet down which were most likely lake trout. It is that time of year when the salmon start moving closer to shore. Those fishing the channel were targeting smallmouth bass but most were undersize. This is when anglers start casting for salmon after dark and before dawn.

Frankfort: Strong winds are moving the water and making it difficult to find the thermocline. Some chinook were hitting on meat rigs up high. Those trolling the Herring Hole did best 80 to 120 feet down in 150 to 180 feet with plugs, meat rigs and flies. A large number of coho are being reported as well. Chinook were caught by pier anglers as the fish are staging in front of the piers.

Betsie River: Chinook salmon are moving into the river.

Onekama: Those heading straight out to 180 to 250 feet and heading north caught chinook on spoons and flies in the early morning. Fish were also found in the Barrel and in front of the golf course.

Portage Lake: Some nice bluegills were caught on worms in 10 to 18 feet in several different areas. Anglers will have to move around to find them.

Manistee: Surface water temperatures were at 74 degrees and the thermocline dropped to about 100 feet. Anglers are still catching some chinook and coho in 150 to 22 feet. Very few lake trout were caught. Dredging continues in the harbor. Boat anglers should stay to the north side of the dredging equipment to avoid any accidents.

Manistee Lake: Those targeting chinook had a hard time hooking fish. Those caught were taken near the mouth of the Little Manistee River when jigging off the bottom. Large and smallmouth bass fishing has picked up with the cooler weather. Crank baits and artificial plastics worked well along the steep drop-offs.

Big Manistee River: Chinook salmon have started entering the river with most fish in the lower stretch between Rainbow Bend and the M-55 Bridge. The bite was slow but the run is still early. Try crank baits in the deeper holes below Rainbow Bend. Anglers are reminded that snagging is illegal.

Ludington: Fishing was slow here as well because of the winds and warm water temperatures. The thermocline here also dropped to about 100 feet. Chinook and coho could be found in 140 to 200 feet. A small number of lake trout were also caught.

Pere Marquette Lake: Some are still targeting salmon but catch rates slowed.

Pere Marquette River: Anglers are starting to target salmon. Those fishing the river are again reminded that snagging is illegal.

Pentwater: Anglers caught salmon 30 to 100 feet down in 70 to 165 feet with orange spoons, green or silver plugs and meat rigs.

Pentwater Lake: Shore anglers caught panfish on red worms near the bottom.


Upper Peninsula Fishing Report

Ontonagon: Fishing has been good but conditions were changing daily due to the winds. Chinook and coho were showing up in the top third of the water column. Anglers are trolling spoons and a flasher/fly combo.

Black River Harbor: Fishing in front of the harbor has been good but water depths here were also sporadic due to the winds.

Lake Gogebic: The best walleye catches were coming from deeper water when trolling crawler harnesses or stick baits and when drifting crawlers and leeches especially along the deeper weed beds. A few were caught on minnows. Perch and sunfish can be found along the weed beds and around structure in Bergland Bay.

Menominee River: Continues to produce some nice walleye and smallmouth bass when trolling, casting or jigging with live bait and artificial lures.

Little Bay De Noc: Overall fishing was slower. The best walleye catches are still in the waters of Green Bay. Those trolling crawler harnesses and stick baits from the "Fingers" south to the Minneapolis Shoals caught fish in 14 to 30 feet or near Stonington and the Farmers Dock in 16 to 28 feet. Very good northern pike action off the mouth of the Day's River when trolling or casting crank baits, spoons and spinners in 10 to 16 feet. Perch fishing was fair near the green buoy by the Day's River in 16 to 22 feet, south of Hunters Point in 20 to 30 feet and along the break at the mouth of the Escanaba Yacht Harbor. Most were using minnows or crawlers.

Big Bay De Noc: Walleye anglers reported marking fish at Round Island in 17 to 24 feet but very few catches were reported. Try trolling crawler harnesses. Smallmouth anglers in this area and the northern Bay reported undersize fish. The best catches were off Garden Bluff with minnows, plastics and drop-shots in 18 to 30 feet. Fairport was very slow and had few anglers. Those heading out were fishing 60 to 90 feet down in 110 to 130 feet at the "Gap" or in 110 to 140 feet off Point Detour.

Marquette: Lake trout fishing was good in 140 to 180 feet near the white rocks, Granite Island and Presque Isle. Many were in the 10 pound range but a few were over 20 pounds. Smaller coho were also caught.

Munising: Lake trout anglers had fewer catches and the coho action was slower. Surface water temperatures were still in the mid to upper 60's. There was a slight thermocline at about 70 feet however windy conditions keep changing things up and the thermocline moved close to 90 feet. Anglers were trolling in Trout Bay and the West Channel due to windy conditions out past Grand Island. Shore anglers at the Anna River reported slow fishing.

Grand Marais: Windy conditions here have also kept fishing activity to a minimum. Those able to get out were fishing near Au Sable Point in 150 to 200 feet and caught a fair number of smaller lake trout. Pier anglers reported poor catch rates. Try casting orange and silver, orange and gold or chartreuse blades. Water levels on the Sucker River were high.

St. Marys River: Pike in the 32 to 38 inch class were caught in Raber Bay when casting spinners in and around the weed beds in 8 to 10 feet. Downstream about two miles, walleye were caught near Carlton Creek in the early morning on a crawler harness with a bottom bouncer in 12 to 14 feet. In the late evening, anglers did best when trolling or casting orange and green pencil plugs near the mouth of the creek.

Detour: Anglers caught a good number of pink salmon right along with a couple chinook, coho and lake trout. Pink salmon were up high and were caught on small orange and gold 3 inch spoons 12 to 25 feet down in 50 to 80 feet from Fry Pan Island south of the ferry boat lane and out to the green buoy just northwest of the lighthouse. A few chinook and coho were caught from the lighthouse east to the red buoy on the Drummond Island side and back to the lighthouse. Squid type baits trolled with flashers in 52 to 60 feet worked best. Across from Detour Village a few walleye were caught at Black Rock Point. Try a jig and crawler in 18 to 25 feet.

Cedarville and Hessel: Yellow perch are still slow throughout Cedarville. A few in the 8 to 9.5 inch class were caught but most were much smaller. A lot of pike were caught in the Moscoe Channel. Most were 22 to 24 inches but some did hook the occasional 30 inch fish when casting red and white spoons or chrome colored spinners in the early morning or evening. The better smallmouth fishing was in and around Duck Bay in the early morning. Those jigging a dark brown or green tube jig caught fish off the rock piles at the entrance to Voight Bay. At Hessel, anglers caught trout and salmon. Lake trout were caught near Goose Island when trolling green and white spin-glo's 65 to 75 feet down in 90 feet. A few chinook were taken 12 miles southwest of Hessel and east of Bois Blanc Island at Reynolds Reef when trolling flashers and a large purple and black spoon 62 feet down in over 100 feet of water. A few splake were caught at the West Entrance when trolling a blue and chrome spoon near the rocky bottom in 25 to 32 feet.

St. Ignace: A few chinook, pink salmon and lake trout were caught by those trolling around Mackinac Island and between Mackinac and Round Islands. There are decent numbers of chinook salmon staging in St. Martins Bay before they start their run up into the Carp River and the Pine River. Boat anglers need to watch out for all the nets in St. Martins Bay. A few salmon moved near the Carp River but very few were caught. Anglers did catch a few decent size perch and walleye but the pike were small. Those fishing the Pine River caught bullhead.


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