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, April 28, 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

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Most areas saw inconsistent catch rates as colder temperatures arrived to many parts of the state this week. More and more anglers are heading out, but overall activity has been slow.

 


Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake Erie: Anglers targeting walleye saw good action this week. Those jigging minnows and bucktail jigs or trolling sticks and cranks in bright or chrome colors caught fish in 13 to 20 feet of water. Stoney Point and Turtle Island are remaining hot spots for angler activity. Crawler harnesses are seeing more use and are also catching walleye. White bass catches are slowly increasing and the occasional yellow perch is also being taken. Anglers targeting largemouth bass in the harbors, channels and from shore are catching good numbers. Several crappie have also been taken in the harbors and marinas.

Oakland County Anglers continue to do well on smallmouth bass in both Union and Cass Lakes. Suspending jerk baits in the sandy shallow flats or blade baits along the deeper end of the drop offs have been producing best. Cass Lake has had good bluegill fishing in the canals and shallow coves. Those using small jigs or hooks tipped with live bait are doing best for pan fish. Good numbers of pike and walleye are being seen in the shallows so it should make for a great opening weekend. Anglers report water temps are between 52 and 57 degrees most areas of the lakes.

Lake St. Clair: Pier and channel anglers at Selfridge launch are still catching pan fish on crawlers and minnows. Boating anglers leaving Selfridge targeting pan fish moved into the canals surrounding the area and caught crappie and perch. Boating anglers fishing around Harley Ensign launch area caught bluegills and perch as well. These anglers also used minnows and crawlers. On the south end, smallmouth bass fishing proved to be good at Memorial Park, the 400 Club, and at Metro in six to nine feet of water using green pumpkin tubes or white tubes. Largemouths were also caught at Metro and in the canals with similar lures. Pumpkinseeds and bluegill were caught using crawlers and spikes in the canals around Metro.

Harbor Beach: A few boats have been out taking mostly lake trout. All along the outside of the thumb, lake trout seem to be stacked along the bottom in 30 to 45 feet of water.

Saginaw Bay: Walleye were being taken in a variety of locations including off Gambil's Marina near Pinconning, off Linwood in 15 to 20 feet of water and off Bay City State Park in nine to 15 feet of water. Others reported walleye catches off the mouth of the Kawkawlin River in 12 to 15 feet of water and a mile northeast of the Spoils Island and out near the Spark Plug Buoys numbers 11 and 12. There were also walleye anglers reporting fish catches off the mouth of the Quanicassee River. Pink and purple lures were productive. Both crankbaits and crawler harnesses were taking fish. Shore anglers in the Saginaw River at Essexville took a few channel cats.


Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

St. Joseph: Boat anglers are finding salmon fishing very inconsistent. There are a few fish spread out from 30 feet of water to well over 100 feet of water. Pier fishing is slow. There is an occasional brown trout being caught on spawn. Overall fishing is slow.

South Haven: Boat anglers continue to have good success targeting lake trout. The best fishing seems to be in 45 to 65 feet of water. Cowbells and spin- n-glows are working best. Anglers targeting salmon are finding fishing slow. Pier fishing is also very slow.

Grand River at Lansing: More anglers are heading out but few fish were caught.

Whitehall: Steelhead and brown trout fishing has been slow with very few anglers targeting them off the piers. Walleye continue to be caught off the Whitehall and Montague piers after sunset using Countdown Rapalas and plastic swimbaits.


Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Mackinaw City: All docks at the launch ramp are in but there appears to be little or no fishing activity anywhere on Lake Huron.

Cheboygan: One of the docks is in at the launch by the fish cleaning station but remains closed. Only a few boats have launched with little or no success out on Lake Huron. Suckers are starting to move in in larger numbers and are being caught by shore anglers. There have been a few northern pike and smallmouth bass caught incidentally by anglers over the past week as the water warms in the river.

Cheboygan River: Boat and shore anglers are picking up some steelhead but catch rates remain low. There is a good amount of walleye in the Cheboygan River and if they stick around until this weekend the opener should be productive for both boat and shore anglers.

Rogers City: Has very little activity because the weather just hasn't been very good. Best bet is to fish close to shore. Try the harbor at Calcite or Swan Bay. Lakers should be there along with atlantics. Try high lines off planer boards. Run a mix of spoons and body baits in a variety of colors; such as greens, oranges, yellows, silvers or reds. Try them out in 50 to 60 feet of water near the bottom for lakers.

Presque Isle: Atlantic salmon are being caught. Good places have been North Bay, the bay going into the marina and Stoneport. Anglers are trolling boards with spoons and body baits in orange, green, yellow and silver. Lake trout are in water 100 feet into the shallows near the bottom. Silver dodger or cowbells with spin glows are the baits of choice for lake trout.

Alpena: Fishing is staying consistent, while water temperatures are fluctuating up and down depending on weather and wind conditions. Thunder Bay is up and down scattering fish throughout the Bay. Lake trout are in in good numbers along with smallmouth bass. Steelhead are still running the river but not in high numbers. Walleye are limited but a few are being caught. You will have to vary baits accordingly to the conditions being fished.

Harrisville: Fishing is picking up in and around the harbor. Steelhead, Atlantic salmon and walleye are in and around the harbor. Anglers are casting and trolling body baits, small spoons and floating spawn.

Oscoda: The Oscoda pier is picking up slowly. There are reports of walleye being caught late at night and early morning on body baits in silver, UV and clown. Steelhead are still making their way up river and onto the beds in good numbers. Spawn, fly's, trout beads, spinners and body baits are all producing well.

Tawas: There's been a decent amount of trolling activity in Tawas Bay and south, with a fair number of walleye and a few pike being caught. Walleye were hitting both crankbaits and crawler harnesses and were being caught in a variety of locations around Tawas Bay and also down off Whitestone Point. Shore and wading anglers casting crankbaits and jigs were taking some walleye and pike beside the State Police post and also at the mouth of the Tawas River.

Au Gres: Boat anglers were taking a good number of walleye trolling off Point Lookout, off the mouth of the Au Gres River, and off Pointe Au Gres in 10 to 25 feet of water. Shore anglers casting at the mouth of the Au Gres River also took a few walleye and the odd pike.


Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Harbor Springs: The dock is still not in at the Harbor Springs boat launch. I did talk to one boat angler who picked up a few lake trout while fishing west of Harbor Point, on the outskirts of Little Traverse Bay.

Petoskey: There are not a lot of boat anglers going out at this time. The few that went out were targeting lake trout, brown trout and steelhead. Those targeting browns and steelhead were staying closer to shore and covering the area from the break wall to the Bay View area. Anglers were catching lake trout out deeper, around 80 feet down near the bottom. Spoons were working well on lakers.

Bear River: Steelhead fishing was very slow and there were still a lot of suckers at the dam and at the mouth of the river. Anglers were fishing for steelhead using mainly spawn and flies. Hopefully the recent rain has coaxed a fresh batch of steelhead into the area. Not much was happening at the break wall over the past weekend. A few small northern pike were caught off the river dock last week and the suckers remained in the area. The Bobberhole was slow for Steelhead but anglers were stillfishing with spawn, wax worms, and flies. The area held a lot of small brown trout that were planted last week around the marina. It was difficult to fish the mouth of the river without continuously hooking into these small fish.

Boardman River: Steelhead fishing has been slow this past week for anglers on the Boardman and Elk River below the dams. A few fish have been caught with the occasional brown trout in the mix. Although not as productive as the previous week, anglers fishing cisco continue to catch fish off of Bryant Park on West bay. Cisco anglers on East bay have had limited success off of Dock Road. Boat anglers targeting lake trout have had success trolling the southern end of West bay.

Frankfort: The fishing out of Frankfort by boats out trolling along the beach have caught lakers and a brown or two. They are using spoons in bright colors. A fish or two were caught off the Elberta Pier. Surf casters were using spawn bags.

Onekama: The fishing out of Onekama into Lake Michigan has been slow. Fishermen fishing on Portage Lake have caught a few perch off the outlet channel.

Manistee Lake: Reported excellent catches fishing in front of Solberg's Marina. Anglers were jigging wax worms or crawlers off the bottom in 15 to 20 feet of water. Yellow perch bites were slow but anglers still landed a few fish near the deeper waters by Penny Park. Bass anglers were picking up good size smallmouths around the docks.

Big Manistee River: Tippy Dam is still producing Steelhead both fresh and drop backs and a few small brown trout. Fish were hitting on a wide range of spawn, lures, yarn, beeds, spinners and wobble glows. Sucker anglers have been landing a few in Bear Creek and the Rainbow Bend area on crawlers.

Pentwater: Pier fishing has been slow, but boat anglers have had success trolling for lake trout in 40 feet of water.

Pentwater Lake: Anglers fishing from shore and in boats are catching black crappie as well as a few yellow perch using jigs tipped with wax worms or perch rigs tipped with minnows.


Upper Peninsula Fishing Report

Little Bay De Noc: Cold weather, winds and rain kept some anglers from participating this week. The perch anglers reported good to excellent catches off Center and 3rd reefs using minnows or wigglers in 25 to 35 feet of water. Best area was between the Day's River and the Vagabond Resort towards the east bank. Several limits were reported. Smallmouth bass anglers have started fishing the shore off the Ford River and reported fair to good catches casting spinners, cranks or plastics. Fly fishing anglers reported a few steelhead catches on the Escanaba River by the 1st Dam.

Big Bay De Noc: The Garden Bay perch fishery is peaked with good to excellent catches reported this week. Anglers fished by the Fishery on the west bank using minnows or crawlers in five to eight feet of water. Mostly females are being caught with at least a quarter of them spent. Water temperatures in both bays remain quite cold in the low to mid 40s. A few anglers have targeted smallmouth bass in Ogontz and reported spotty catches at best using plastics or spinners in 12 to 14 feet of water. The Fayette launch still doesn't have the dock in yet but should soon.

Marquette: The fishing overall has been moderate; there have been some days anglers were not able to get out on the water due to the rainy weather conditions and northeast winds. The boat anglers at the upper harbor are trolling for coho and kings around the breakwater with spoons with a few successful catches but no limits. Some boat anglers are also jigging at the "bubblers" with few successful for coho. The lower harbor fishing has picked up this week with boat anglers trolling for coho around the breakwater and at the mouth of the Carp River. There are a couple commercial nets out at the lower harbor near the Sand bar so be aware of net buoys. Carp River steelhead fishing has slowed; a few anglers have caught some that have already spawned out. A few coho and brook trout have been recorded using spawn and artificial spinners.

Au Train: Fishing has been good this week overall for boat anglers. Many are trolling with spoons and crankbaits in Shelter Bay for coho with limits being caught. A few coho have been caught in areas near the Rock and the Au Train River mouths as well. Also, brown trout, steelhead and few king salmon have been reported by boat anglers who were trolling in the Shelter Bay and surrounding areas. Rock River shore fishing has been slow this week but few coho were noted to be caught using both artificial spinners and spawn.

Munising: Boat anglers have had mixed results for the week. Overall, boat anglers trolling within the Bay report little success trolling for coho salmon and splake. Boat anglers trolling near Trout Bay and surrounding areas report slightly more success with some limits of coho salmon reported. Most anglers targeting "coho" are concentrating trolling along the banks in less than 50 feet of water. Shore and pier anglers had a slow week catching only an occasional Menominee, splake or whitefish - mainly using spawn or worms for bait.

Grand Marais: Fishing has picked up the past week, although few boat anglers were out due to cold, rainy conditions. A few boat anglers over the weekend did well with some limits of mainly coho with an occasional steelhead. Water temperatures are currently in the mid to upper 30s. There are reports of good smelt runs in nearby creeks. Action for whitefish on the pier has gotten better the last few days with some limits reported. Most whitefish are running small averaging around 13 to 14 inches. A few "suckers" have been caught off the pier over the past few days. Anglers also have been having good success on menominee. Anglers are using either single eggs/or small worms.

St. Marys River: Drummond Island this past weekend reported better catches of yellow perch in Scott Bay. Some anglers had success stillfishing and drifting with minnows and worms along the very north side of Scott Bay where abandoned weeds and old cattails are bent over in the water. In Maxton Bay the perch are running in the seven to nine inch class with a few 10 inch fish being caught in between the DNR access site and boat launch and the old Sportsman Club Pointe still fishing and drifting with Perch Spreaders tipped with minnows. There was not much fishing effort at Raber Bay or Lime Island. Moving up the St. Mary's River to Lake George on the east side of Sugar Island off Hay Bay in 30 feet of water, there are reports of yellow perch in the nine to 11 inch class. Shiner minnows seemed to work best for perch in Lake George.

Detour: Detour is still seeing little to no activity. Boat docks had still not been placed in the water at both local boat launches.

Cedarville and Hessel: Cedarville boat launch area is open with the first couple boats launching this past weekend. There were vague reports that some yellow perch were being caught. The Lakeside Road launch is open but seeing very little activity. Overall, fishing activity is on the quick upswing with warmer weather though catch rates have remained slow in general. Hessel boat activity has picked up significantly with the improving weather over the last week. Reports are of most boats targeting Hessel Bay and Wilderness Bay trolling with slow results. Boat anglers have reported catches of zero to two splake for typically long hours of fishing. Pier fishing results for anglers targeting splake were mixed. Catch rates have been generally slow although a few nice fish in the 10 pound range were reported and are helping to continue to keep anglers' interest. Most anglers continue fishing under slip bobbers with smelt or minnows. A few anglers were also casting some deep-diving body-baits with a little luck.

St. Ignace: One dock has been put in at the St. Ignace city boat launch but there is little to no fishing activity occurring out on Lake Huron. The fish cleaning station remains closed. Catch rates have been reportedly higher for steelhead in the Carp River with warmer water bringing in a few fresh fish. The water remains high in the river so attempting to fish still remains tough. Suckers are starting to show up in greater numbers in the Carp River as well. The smelt run in the eastern Upper Peninsula streams appears to be waning or at an end. However, there are a few anglers who are hopeful that more smelt will push in this weekend.


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