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, January 18, 2018
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

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Ice fishing continues around the state and some of the inland lakes are in better shape after some of the snow cover melted. Rivers across the state should be fishable by the weekend with warmer temperatures in the forecast. Watch for changing ice conditions with the warm up and the rain.


Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake Erie: Perch anglers were still taking some fish in the Metro Park Marina and near the Banana Dike. Try minnows and spikes. Those fishing the Lake Erie Metro Park Marina caught bluegills. The fish were 6 to 7 inches.

Lake St. Clair: Perch fishing continues to be excellent across the lake. A good number of fish were taken near Cotton Road and the St. Clair Metro Park. Most were using a gold spoon with a red bead tipped with a minnow. Those targeting panfish had some luck nearshore and in the canals. Some have taken walleye in 8 to 12 feet. Those spearing pike were taking smaller fish.

Saginaw Bay: Had a lot of anglers from Erickson Road south to Linwood, with Linwood being the most popular access point. Walleyes were taken in 17 to 20 feet in the vicinity of the second pressure crack. Anglers need to use extreme caution near both pressure cracks as they are still active and changing all the time. Both people and machines have fallen through the ice near them. Walleye were caught in 14 feet off Parish Road. Perch anglers were getting some fish in 5 feet off Anderson Road and 6 feet off Linwood. Good catches including a couple limits came from the shipping channel near Spoils Island. A few were fishing in 10 feet off the trailer park near the river mouth. East of the Saginaw River mouth, success was slow at Finn Road and at Vanderbilt Park. Perch anglers in the lower Quanicassee River caught a few small ones. Slow perch fishing from Sebewaing to Bay Port. A few pike were speared or caught on hook and line and several perch anglers reported seeing pike down the holes. Perch fishing was a little better off Mud Creek in Wildfowl Bay. A few pike and walleye were taken incidental to perch in Wildfowl Bay. At Caseville, the thaw last week made the river and marina pretty murky and fishing slowed to a standstill. No fishing at Port Austin as the few shanties inside the harbor were pulled to shore.

Saginaw River: Special note: Be careful of the ice in or near the channel. The thaw last week caused the current to pick up and it thinned out the ice. You might be standing on 8 inches in one spot off the current and two steps away there might only be 2 inches! The thaw caused the water to muddy up and fishing slowed. From Wickes Park in Saginaw north all the way to the Independence Bridge, catches were limited to a walleye here and there with a lot of sub-legal fish caught and released. A couple eater-size fish were taken between the Independence Bridge and the mouth. Those fishing out of the main current seemed to be doing a little better, and evenings were best. A few walleye and some perch were caught inside the Yacht Club basin. Again, these areas out of the main current seem to be where the fish have been holding.


Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Ice conditions on most of the lakes in this area did get better. The bluegill bite has been fair with most fish coming from 10 to 20 feet near the drop-offs.

Gull Lake: Smelt fishing has been poor.

Grand River at Grand Rapids:Both Millhouse and Bruce's Bayou seem to be the reliable bluegill spots. The steelhead action should pick up by the weekend.

Muskrat Lake: Continues to produce pike, bluegills and the odd crappie.

Morrison Lake: Was producing a few perch for those using a jig tipped with a spec minnow. Anglers were moving around and working quite hard to entice the fish to bite.

Muskegon Lake: Special note: Anglers should avoid the northeast corner of the lake as a truck went through the ice between Second Street and the Conservation Club. Also beware of the boat that goes in and out between the GT Dock on the south end and the channel leading to Lake Michigan. Perch have been caught in 42 feet on the southwest and west end off Cottage Grove and the Harbor Town parking lot. The bite turns on and off but some good size fish have been caught. Pike and a few walleye were taken off Fisherman's Landing on the east end. Pike were taken off Heritage Landing and Hartshorn Marina.


Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Burt Lake: Was producing a decent number of walleye and perch.

Black Lake: Fishing pressure picked up. Anglers are catching walleye before sunrise and at dusk with blues in 11 to 18 feet. Anglers were also catching a few pike but most were sub-legal. Perch were caught on shiners in 6 feet. There were no musky reports from spear anglers. There are some major pressure cracks near Zolner Road and off Corbat Road so use caution in these areas.

Grand Lake: Was producing some walleye.

Higgins Lake: Perch anglers were near the drop-off in 60 feet. Lots of anglers were out deep and targeting lake trout in 80 to 120 feet. Most are using greys or smelt. Those targeting smelt were in 50 to 60 feet off the North State Park, the west launch and off Big Creek with a Hali jig tipped with wax worm or spike. The occasional rainbow trout has been taken in shallow waters off the Conference Center when using a wiggler. A few pike are still being taken on tip-ups or by those spearing.

Houghton Lake: Anglers can walk out from the DNR launch on the north end but taking any kind of vehicle out is not possible as the cement ramp has buckled. Anglers should not drive across the pressure crack off the west launch. Bluegills have been caught on wigglers and wax worms in 5 to 8 feet. For walleye, try jigging spoons tipped with a minnow head. Crappie were hitting on small jigging spoons tipped with a live minnow. Those spearing or using tip-ups are taking pike.

Tawas: Those spearing pike did well on the north end of the bay off Jerry's Marina. Lake trout and walleye were caught around the artificial reef. A few anglers were walleye fishing out closer to the tip of Tawas Point in 20 to 22 feet.

Au Gres: Most of the fishing effort was concentrated in the back bay west of the river mouth where anglers were taking pike, a few walleye and some perch. Walleye anglers heading out from Hale Road, the Pine River access site, and Palmer Road were getting fish in 11 to 15 feet. Walleye anglers were also hitting the Catfish Hole off White's Beach. Perch anglers north of the Pine River caught 8 to 10 inch fish in 4 to 8 feet.


Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Anglers were taking motorized vehicles out however caution should be used especially around any pressure cracks. The rivers should be fishable with warmers temperatures by the weekend.

Walloon Lake: In Charlevoix County was producing a few perch.

Portage Lake: Perch fishing was decent. Some nice fish were caught but anglers were sorting through the small ones. Lake herring were caught over deep water.

Manistee Lake: Had ice shanties off Penny Park.

Lake Missuakee: Has been good for panfish but no word on walleye.

Lakes Cadillac and Mitchell: Had less snow on the ice so travel conditions were much better. A good number of crappie were taken off Kenwood Park on Lake Cadillac. Mitchell is also producing some nice crappie. The coves on Mitchell were good for bluegills and sunfish. Pike were active on both lakes and were hitting tip-ups with sucker minnows.

Pere Marquette Lake: Anglers caught pike on tip-ups with sucker minnows. Some perch were also caught.

Pentwater Lake: Anglers were getting bluegill, crappie and a few perch.

Haymarsh Lakes: In Mecosta County were producing some nice bluegills. No limit catches but the fish caught were up to 10 inches.


Upper Peninsula Fishing Report

Little Bay De Noc: Had very little snow cover on it. Ice conditions changed some and those heading south of Aronson Island reported much thinner ice. This area is considered dangerous and extreme caution must be used at all times. Pressure cracks have been moving a lot over the last week so please use caution near them. Overall catches were down some but still fair to good. Walleye anglers reported fair catches near the Second Reef in 27 to 35 feet, in the channel south of the "Narrows" in 28 to 34 feet and just south of the Escanaba River in 25 to 32 feet. All were using rapalas tipped with a minnow. Several large fish were caught between Aronson Island and Portage Point when jigging rapalas tipped with a minnow in 27 to 32 feet. Lots of walleye anglers in the upper bay reported a good number of undersize fish which is a good sign for the future. Perch anglers had fair to good catches with wigglers in the Kipling Flats in 27 feet. Fewer fish were caught but the size was 10 to 13 inches. Fair catches were reported in the Gladstone Channel in 28 to 34 feet, out near Brach's Cabins in 17 to 21 feet and out near the shipping docks in Escanaba in 30 feet. Good numbers of smaller perch and some bluegills were caught in the Escanaba Yacht Harbor in 8 to 12 feet. Pike were active throughout the bay. Best catches of large fish were reported near the ship docks in Escanaba when using a tip-up with a sucker minnows in and around 25 feet. Whitefish anglers reported fair to good catches out in the channel at Gladstone with minnows or spawn in 30 to 35 feet and off Sand Point in 80 to 90 feet.

Manistique Lakes: Walleye were hitting pretty good.

Brevoort Lake: Anglers caught walleye and pike.

St. Marys River: Those fishing the upper river above the locks reported good Menominee and whitefish action. Mosquito Bay is the popular location.

Cedarville and Hessel: Cedarville was producing yellow perch and pike. Perch catches were good but anglers were doing some sorting. Off Hessel, perch were caught around the Les Cheneaux Islands when using minnows, wigglers and spikes. Most were undersize but keepers averaged 10 inches. Be sure to use caution in areas where there is a current.


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