By The Associated press
Rain, high winds and brimming rivers have been keeping Michigan anglers at home, but the Michigan Department of Natural Resources said there's hope for better fishing ahead.
Water levels in the rivers could be down by the end of the weekend, which would improve catch rates, the department said Wednesday in its weekly fishing report. It said the walleye and trout openers were slow but should pick up once the weather stabilizes.
AuTrain: Catch rates have improved with coho taken by those jigging twister tails or trolling crank baits from Shelter Bay to the Brownstone launch in 10 to 20 feet of water. A few lake trout, brown trout and whitefish were also caught. Steelhead and coho were still being caught near the Rock River in the early morning.
Marquette: Those trolling caught a few coho, steelhead and brown trout on crank baits from the Lower Harbor to the Chocolay River. The fish were in shallow on the windy days, but boat control was difficult. The Upper Harbor was still producing a few coho for those jigging with twister tails near the bubblers. Slow fishing for shore anglers near Mattson Lower Harbor Park and the coal docks. Lake trout have been caught out near the White Rocks in 130 feet of water and near Stannard Rock, where the fish were a little bigger.
Keweenaw Bay: The bite was slow but anglers did manage to catch a few chinook and coho.
Fall's River: Had a good number of steelhead as water levels come down.
Eagle Harbor: Shore anglers casting spoons or cut bait have caught whitefish and splake. The docks are in but no boats had been out yet.
Copper Harbor: Had good splake fishing for those jigging cut baits such as sucker or smelt. Menominee were caught off the mouth of the Fanny Hooe River when floating leaf worms or wax worms.
Menominee: Boat anglers are trolling the Michigan and Wisconsin shoreline for walleye and brown trout. Try crawler harnesses for walleye or spoons and rapalas for brown trout.
Menominee River: Those wading and shore anglers caught walleye but brown trout were few. Those targeting suckers caught a good number of fish.
Little Bay De Noc: Water temperatures are warming up and perch fishing has been good for those using wigglers and crawlers in 20 to 30 feet of water just off the Day's River. The Narrows had mixed results in the same depths when using crawlers. Rivers in the area have all crested after the heavy rains. The high and fast current made trout fishing a bit more challenging.
Big Bay De Noc: Had good perch fishing just off the Fishery in Garden Bay in 8 to 10 feet of water. Most are still-fishing with minnows or crawlers. For the bigger fish, try off Ansell's Point.
Manistique River: Has plenty of white suckers along with some steelhead being caught. Most are using yarn, flies and spinners for steelhead.
DeTour: Yellow perch are still being caught off the Bayside Resort Dock, where anglers can fish at the very end of Tourist Road. Boat anglers are taking perch and a few bluegills in Maxton Bay and Scott Bay. Small minnows were the secret.
Cedarville and Hessel: The marina pier at Hessel had excellent splake fishing and several Atlantic salmon were also caught. No sign of perch yet.
Carp River: The water is cloudy and fast which has caused some flooding. Smelt appear to be done but white suckers are starting to come in.
NORTHEAST LOWER PENINSULA
Ocqueoc River: Look for peak steelhead runs over the next couple of weeks as the water recedes. Anglers are getting a few fish when drifting spawn under a bobber.
Rogers City: Was slow. For lake trout, try fishing the shallows when trolling body baits or cowbells with spin glows. Look for structure such as a rocky bottom.
Presque Isle: Lake trout and splake season is open. The minimum size limit is 22 inches. Look for fish suspended in 30 to 70 feet of water. Try cowbells with spin glows or spoons.
Alpena: Walleye were caught along the shoreline behind the Yacht Club. Try casting bright green, orange or red body baits or still-fishing with large grey minnows.
Thunder Bay River: Had few anglers at the Ninth Street Dam because of all the water that was released. A couple steelhead and walleye were caught on flies. The suckers are in.
Heart Lake: Located in Otsego County between Old US-27 and I-75 south of Gaylord is producing trout.
Harrisville: Those able to get out have caught walleye north and south of the harbor in 10 to 30 feet of water. Try body baits, crawler harnesses or small spoons run off planer boards or downriggers. Some are long-lining. A few lake trout were also caught as they should be in close to shore right along with the walleye.
Bright Lake: Located in Hartwick Pines State Park is also a good place for inland trout fishing.
Shupac Lake: In Crawford County is producing some trout.
Oscoda: The pier was slow but those casting spoons or body baits at the mouth caught steelhead and walleye. Boats trolling around the pier caught a few lake trout.
Au Sable River: Water levels were still high. The North Branch was producing some fish. Steelhead are finally making their way up the river, hitting on spawn, wax worms and body baits.
Tawas: Pier and boat anglers are finally starting to catch a fair to good number of walleye when casting or trolling rapalas. Fish were caught by those casting at night from the pier or wading behind the State Police Post.
Au Gres: Is producing walleye in 10 to 20 feet of water around Point Lookout. Most are trolling body baits.
NORTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA
Lake Charlevoix: Good numbers of yellow perch are being caught on the west end.
Medusa Creek: Though late, some trout were starting to show up.
Boyne River: Had an excellent run of steelhead.
Intermediate River: Near Bellaire had a few walleye.
Traverse City: A decent number of lake trout have been caught in the East Bay just south of the Center Road launch in 140 feet of water. Cisco and lake trout were marked a few miles out from the Elk Rapids launch in 120 feet of water. There was a good number of fish in the Elk Rapids bypass pond where wigglers and wax worms caught more fish than spawn. In the West Bay, those jigging in 140 feet of water just south of the island caught lake trout. Those surfcasting near the mouth of the Boardman River caught steelhead and lake trout.
Boardman River: Steelhead fishing was a bit slow but a few fish were caught mid-day. Walleye are also in the river.
Frankfort: When the weather cooperates, boats out trolling were starting to catch chinook and brown trout along the shoreline.
Onekama: Those fishing off the north breakwall caught brown trout at first light.
Portage Lake: Perch were still biting but the females were close to spawning so the run may soon be over. Wrigglers still are favored on small jigs for the bigger fish. Walleye were caught the north shoreline after dark.
Lake Cadillac: Was producing a good number of pike but not many walleye. Some are using live bait while others are using artificial. A good number of large and smallmouth bass have also been caught and released.
Lake Mitchell: Is also producing pike, walleye, crappie and bass.
Manistee: Boats trolling along the shoreline have caught chinook and steelhead. Try small spoons in orange or green. Pier anglers were still picking up a few brown trout when casting spoons or floating spawn.
Manistee River: Steelhead fishing will most likely be done by the time water levels come back down.
Ludington: Due to dredging, the dock at the Loomis Street launch has been pulled. Those trolling the shoreline were still taking a few chinook and brown trout on small spoons or body baits and pier anglers caught steelhead and brown trout on spawn.
Pere Marquette River: Steelhead fishing is done as there have been no fish caught and there are no fish on the gravel. A few brown trout were caught on flies in the no-kill section of the river.
Pentwater: Brown trout fishing is hit-or-miss. Pier anglers using spawn have caught a few fish as well as those trolling south of the port.