Weekly Fishing Report
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, January 12, 2017
Weekly Fishing Report
Read below or call: 1-855-777-0908
Click in the map above to find your weekly fishing report by region.
Anglers are ice fishing however those in the southern half of the Lower Peninsula will need to use extreme caution after the rain and warm temperatures. Water levels on the rivers are on the rise after the snowmelt and rain. Ice jams on the rivers could result in substantial fluctuations in water levels. Anglers will need to use extreme caution.
- Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report
- Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report
- Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report
- Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report
- Upper Peninsula Fishing Report
Anglers targeting panfish on the inland lakes had minimal success. Anglers fishing Wamplers Lake and Sand Lake in Lenawee County were fishing near the bottom in 12 to 18 feet. A few pike were taken on tip-ups in 8 to 12 feet. Anglers will need to use caution after the mid-week warm up.
Lake Erie: The Metro Park Marina was giving up some panfish.
Huron River: Continues to give up some steelhead near the golf course.
Detroit River: Is wide open with not much in the way of fishing activity.
Lake St. Clair: Panfish and perch fishing were good in the marinas and canals. Some of the main lake areas froze up but anglers were still close to shore. With rain and warm temperatures again, anglers should use extreme caution. Ice that has thawed and refroze is never as strong as new ice.
Saginaw Bay: Ice conditions are highly variable around the Bay and anglers are cautioned to be very careful. Patches of open water still exist in many areas, and newly formed ice may or may not be thick enough to hold anglers. Fishing was basically limited to perch fishing in shallow water. The bay has not yet frozen all the way across, and in most locations ice only extends out about a mile from shore and most anglers are not venturing out anywhere near that far. Some perch fishing activity was reported at White's Beach, Pinconning Road, Newman Road and about three blocks off Erickson Road. Anglers were perch fishing off Linwood but caution needs to be used as a lot of the ice out there was newly frozen or re-frozen and "shove ice" and thickness varies tremendously from spot to spot. Those fishing off Vanderbilt Park near Quanicassee were getting a few perch with live minnows. A few small perch and a couple bluegills were caught inside Sunset Bay Marina. There was also some fishing activity in the channel that leads out of the marina basin. Moving north, Geiger Road had some fishing activity, but the fish were small and the ice had patches of open water so use caution. Fish were also caught from the Mud Creek access site.
Saginaw River:: Most ice fishing activity was concentrated at the mouth, especially in the marina basins off the channel. Some decent catches of 8 to 12 inch perch were taken from the Yacht Club Marina basin and in the mouth of the basin. Live minnows on perch rigs seemed to be more effective than beaded spoons. Live bait usually works best when it is extremely cold. Most fishing on the lower river was limited to the edges as anglers did not trust the ice in the middle of the channel. Some were fishing just off the edge of the banks as far upstream as the Independence Bridge and south of Bay City from Veterans Park along M-13 to Crow Island, but be advised that the middle of the river still has thin ice and patches of open water. Walleye fishing was very slow.
Ice conditions on the inland lakes in the counties near Lake Michigan are still variable due to heavy snow cover. As you move east into counties such as Eaton, Calhoun, St. Joseph, and Jackson, the lakes had less snow and a little thicker ice.
Kalamazoo County: Ice anglers were out on Big and Little Sugarloaf, Gourdneck and Long Lake just to mention a few.
Kalamazoo River: Has elevated water levels that will no doubt spill over the banks. Those walking near the river should exercise caution as the banks will be unstable.
Grand River at Grand Rapids: Was under a flood watch in Robinson Township, Ottawa County. There is an ice jam downstream of Robinson Township. Combined rain and snow melt may elevate the river behind the ice jam. Anglers would need to use extreme caution in this area as well as downstream in case the ice jams give way. A flood warning has been issued near Comstock Park in Kent County. Anglers should avoid these areas of the river.
Muskegon Lake: The Coast Guard is warning anglers to be aware of commercial shipping and ice-breaking activity on the lake Wednesday January 11th through Sunday January 15th. Ships are expected to transit the channel in and out of Muskegon at various times throughout the weekend. A tug boat will conduct ice breaking operations in support of the ships. Recreational users of the ice should plan their activity carefully, use caution near the ice, and stay away from shipping channels and the charted Lake Carriers Association track lines. Most anglers were staying in Snug Harbor.
Burt Lake: Ice anglers were taking a decent number of perch from Maple Bay which is on the west side of the lake. Try live minnows.
Mullett Lake: Anglers were taking a few perch in front of Aloha State Park and in Scotts Bay. It's early ice so anglers need to use caution.
Lake Margrethe: Has ice fishing and a couple good size walleye have been caught.
Higgins Lake: The ice is building. Anglers will need to use caution and watch for a pressure crack out from Big Creek which has come together and is now protruding above the ice. The lake had a good 6 to 7 inches of snow which was turning to slush. Anglers were starting to target pike in 45 feet and lake trout in 80 to 100 feet along the north end. Most are using tip-ups with greys and suckers. Some were also starting to fish off the south end near the State Park.
Houghton Lake: Ice fishing continues however anglers need to stay clear of the very large pressure crack that runs from Heights Marina to the DNR Launch. The large pressure crack is moving from day to day which makes it even more dangerous. The lake had a good 5 inches of snow on top. Fishing has been good with the pike and bluegills active. A couple limit catches of walleye were reported by those fishing in deeper water with smaller jigs and live minnows. Good colors were chartreuse, fire-tiger, dark green and gold. Those targeting crappie are also taking fish.
Tawas: Perch fishing in the Bay was very slow with only a few small fish taken in 15 feet near Jerry's Marina. Those after walleye in 22 feet saw walleye, lake trout and other species near the bottom but nothing would bite. Those spearing pike near Jerry's Marina were taking fish here and there but the action was still slow.
Au Gres: A few were perch fishing on the lower river and in the bayou near the breakwall, but success was limited to a few small perch and sub-legal walleye. Off the Pine River mouth and Palmer Road, people were going out up to a mile, but perch success was slow and no walleyes were brought in. Primarily small perch and a couple bluegills were caught inside Eagle Bay Marina.
Lakes in Antrim and Charlevoix counties were hit-or-miss for safety. The high volume of snow has resulted in much slush and water on top of the ice. Anglers still need to exercise extreme caution when fishing these and other lakes in the area.
Lake Cadillac: Is producing pike for those using tip-ups with suckers. The bluegill and crappie bite improved with the warmer weather.
Lake Mitchell: Ice anglers continue to target the waters on the west end including Big Cove and Small Cove for bluegills and crappie. Try a smaller jig with live bait such as minnows, wigglers and wax worms. Those spearing pike have taken some fish along the south end.
Lake Missaukee: Ice anglers are taking pike and walleye on tip-ups.
Inland lakes are producing panfish, pike and even some walleye. For those heading out on the St. Marys River and parts of Lake Huron, the Coast Guard would like to remind all recreational ice users to plan their activity carefully, use caution on the ice, and stay away from the shipping channels. Some of the channels will be closing while others will open up to two way traffic.
Little Bay De Noc: Anglers were only fishing the head of the Bay and near Gladstone with the exception of the Escanaba Yacht Harbor as no anglers were fishing the southern waters because the area had open water. The bite was slow. Perch were caught on minnows in 22 feet near Kipling and at the head of the Bay in 13 to 20 feet. Walleye catches were fair at best. Several large fish were reported near Kipling when jigging a rapala with a minnow right near the bottom in 27 to 35 feet. Walleye were caught near Gladstone in 30 feet but most were undersize. Anglers will need to use caution as much of the ice is new especially in the southern waters.
Manistique and South Manistique Lakes: Were good for walleye. More snow has fallen making travel on the ice a bit more challenging.
Luce County: Good panfish action was reported on East, Kaks and Twin Lakes which are near Newberry.
Munuscong Bay: Had significant snowfall so use caution. Anglers fishing near Grassy Island are harvesting good numbers of perch. The perch are scattered, but those putting in the time had good results. Catch rates for walleye were fair.
Cedarville and Hessel: Those fishing Musky Bay reported fair catch rates for yellow perch but lots of northern pike. Anglers were targeting perch in 8 to 10 feet in Hessel Bay and splake in Wilderness Bay.
Enjoy your catch! Eat safe fish! Learn about eating safe, local and healthful fish from our Great Lakes State at: Michigan.gov/eatsafefish.