Rain, winds and cooler temperatures earlier in the week have kept both anglers and fish away, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources said Wednesday in its weekly fishing report. Temperatures, however, are on the rebound, and the winds seem to be dying down making better fishing for the Fourth of July.
Copper Harbor: There has been a spike in splake activity this past week. The early morning bite has been good between 5 and 7 a.m. There have also been a few fish caught in the middle of the day but fishing then is very spotty. Night crawlers have produced some nice catches as well as cut bait. There is a small mayfly hatch going on in the harbor right now so fly fishing could be very productive.
Traverse Bay: The fish bite here was slow, but some anglers had a good day on Saturday and brought in a nice catch of lake trout. They were trolling in 90 to 130 feet of water on 7 Mile Reef, which lies to the southeast of the Big Traverse Marina. Some anglers jigging for lake trout off of Big Louie's Point picked up a few in 245 feet of water.
Keweenaw Bay: Due to the bad weather the fish bite was slow during the past week. A few coho, chinook and lake trout were picked up from Sand Point northward to Carla's Restaurant in 40 to 90 feet of water. Anglers jigging for lake trout out from the pine tree on Pequaming Point had some good success in 165 to 260 feet of water.
Gratiot Lake: The walleye bite has been good in the evening after dark and in the early morning. Try fishing in 17 to 25 feet of water slow trolling minnows, leeches, or night crawlers 1 to 4 feet from bottom.
Marquette: Anglers in this area reported scattered catches of lake trout. Anglers reported huge schools of baitfish north of the White Rocks, 80 to 100 feet down in water depths of 160 to 180 feet. Fish were hitting short, however. Shot Point is reporting slightly better success this past week with a few limits of lake trout and a few chinook salmon. Stannard Rock reports good catches with fish averaging 3 to 10 pounds. Surface water temperatures at Stannard Rock are around 40 degrees.
Menominee: Boats are concentrating in the deep holes trolling mainly crawler harnesses targeting walleye, but it was slow with only a few reported or seen. The weather was a contributing factor with the amount of effort with it being rainy with high winds.
Menominee River: Those still-fishing with crawlers, minnows and leeches, were getting many freshwater drum, some smaller yellow perch, catfish, smallmouth bass and an occasional walleye. The gates at the dam were open most of the week which made fishing very difficult in that area, but there were some big catfish and drums caught near the dam which were caught on crawlers.
Little Bay De Noc: Weather conditions are still a major factor in angler participation and catch reports. Temperatures have warmed up by this weeks' end and hopefully here to stay. Fair walleye catches reported throughout the Bay. Second to third reef anglers reported large numbers of sub-legal walleye with a few legal fish trolling and drifting crawlers w/harnesses in 18 to 30 feet of water. Gladstone beach area reported several walleye trolling and drifting crawlers w/harnesses in 12 to 33 feet of water. Best catches were at the mouth of the Escanaba River drifting and trolling crawlers in 10 to 20 feet of water and south by the Ford River, with most trolling crawlers or stick baits in 12 to 16 feet of water. Good numbers of perch in shallow water all through the Kipling area and off the Gladstone pier.
Many shore anglers took advantage of this opportunity still fishing crawler pieces in this area.
Big Bay De Noc: High winds were harsh in this area through most of the week. Walleye anglers began catching a few fish out by the "Boot" and down the reef heading south. Most trolled crawler's w/harnesses in 15 to 23 feet of water. Still good smallmouth bass catches despite the lousy weather. Ogontz, Porcupine Point and Garden Bluff all producing good catches of large fish casting cranks and tubes in 6 to 15 feet of water. Several nice perch catches reported by shore anglers in Fayette State Park still-fishing worms in the harbor. Fairport waters were still quite cold in this area but it looks to be a warmer week coming up. Several chinook catches reported out past the "Gap" in 140 to 120 feet of water and 130 feet down.
Au Train: Very few anglers fished in the area this past week. Those that did reported lake trout catches were scattered with best depths at 200 to 220 feet of water north of Au Train Island. Surface water temperatures remain cool averaging in the upper 40's. A few anglers were out bobbing with fair reports of lake trout averaging 3 to 5 lbs. No reports on salmon for the week.
Manistique: Salmon are starting to be caught in the Bay at 60 to 65 feet of water traveling roughly 4 miles from the mouth of the River. These anglers are trolling different colored spoons. Most were heading out late afternoon to early evening.
The river fishery had low effort this past week which was probably due to high winds. Those that did try were mainly using crawlers or leaches on the fishing pier and fishing docks. There was very little caught.
Cedarville and Hessel: The weather has been pretty poor; very rainy and cool. The Hessel pier is producing some throw back pike, but not much for perch yet. Hessel Bay, Cedarville Bay and Musky Bay are also producing throw back pike and the occasional yellow perch. Boat anglers are casting, but they are competing with some really good fly hatches on McKay Bay and the east end of Moscoe Channel. Lake herring are there, but catch is low. Smallmouth bass have also turned off with the cool down.
St. Ignace: A lot of rain limited the number of anglers out. Nevertheless, the primitive launch in St. Ignace is a good opportunity for anglers to launch small boats or wade for northern pike and bass. Anglers fishing out of the city launches are catching lake trout on the northeast side of Mackinaw Island fishing 25 to 40 feet down. Chinook salmon are also biting over the flats on the west side of Mackinaw Island. Both species have been hitting on purple. Carp River Mouth and upstream anglers are harvesting trout, northern pike, walleye and white suckers.
NORTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA
Charlevoix/Petoskey: Bass are prevalent near the Sylvania Wilderness area. Crooked Lake anglers are catching pike and walleye using minnows and crawler harnesses. Not much action reported on Burt Lake. Lake Charlevoix is seeing smallmouth bass and walleye in 10 to 20 feet of water using crawler harnesses and stick bait. Perch is scarce. The Boyne River is active with kayakers so early morning and early evening are the best time to fish there.
Traverse City: Stream anglers are fishing the hex hatch in the evening hours using spinner falls. Inland lakes still have bluegill on the bite using poppers. Grand Traverse Bay fishermen are catching smallmouth bass and lake trout.
Frankfort: King salmon, chinook and lake trout are being caught in 80 to 120 feet out and 60 feet down with UV spoons and meat rigs.
Upper Herring Lake: Bluegill and bass are the prevalent fish.
Crystal Lake: Rock bass and smallmouth bass are found by anglers fishing on the drop-off with jigs and leeches as well as worms.
Manistee Lake: is producing a large amount of northern pike. They are smaller in size and being caught with spinners and body bait. Big and Little Manistee River anglers are catching salmon using flies and spinners. In Lake Michigan, king salmon are found at 100 to 125 feet out and 50 feet or more down. Spoons and cut bait are most successful.
Ludington: Fishing is slow because the water is warmer and the fish are going deeper. King salmon and lake trout are being caught with cut bait, plugs, glow spoons and rotators.
Hamlin Lake: Bass, perch, panfish and northern pike are being caught by anglers.
SOUTHEAST LOWER PENINSULA
Lake Erie: Fishing activity was busy this weekend with most anglers launching from Sterling State Park. The majority of the anglers headed east of the Fermi Power Plant into 28 feet of water to find the walleye. Although anglers are finding fish, many have to work for them and few returned with a limit catch. In southern Lake Erie, perch are beginning to be caught, although waters have been cloudy near the shoreline. Brest Bay seemed the most active. Perch are being caught near Luna Pier in 15 feet of water.
Detroit River: White bass are still being taken and a few nice smallmouths have been caught. Anglers are not having much luck on inland waters. Water temperatures are in the mid to high 60s driving the walleye into deeper water. Fish are being taken by trolling with minnow type lures and pencil plugs. A few walleye are being caught at Belleville Lake.
St. Clair River: Walleye are being taken in spots along the entire St. Clair River. Some anglers are limiting out. Vertical jigging seems to be the method of choice. A few of the anglers reported catching sturgeon and muskie.
Port Sanilac: Anglers were fishing straight out and to the north in 65 to 90 feet of water. Fish were scattered but a few lake trout, steelhead, and chinook could be found. Pier anglers were catching rock bass, bluegill, smaller bass and pike.
Bay Port: Northern part of the Slot still sounds pretty quiet. Bass fisherman are still doing well for largemouth in Wildfowl Bay and around the Islands and rock reefs for smallmouth.
Harbor Beach: Trollers are fishing in 65 to 90 feet of water and catching a variety of lake trout, pink salmon, steelhead, and the occasional chinook salmon. Catches are sparse and fish are scattered.
Port Austin and Grindstone City: were hampered by lots of wind last week. When anglers could get out, they were getting lake trout, chinook salmon and steelhead. A few walleye and an occasional whitefish were caught as well. In the harbors, anglers were catching and releasing some smaller smallmouth bass.
Saginaw Bay: Walleye are being taken in 8 feet of water off of Finn Road, in 8 feet of water off the Bay City Recreation Area and straight out from the Kawkawlin River in 7 feet of water on crawler harnesses.
Saginaw River: Anglers are finding walleye using crawler harnesses. Shore anglers at Smith Park in Essexville are catching largemouth bass and channel catfish on worms.
SOUTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA
New Buffalo: Excellent catches of freshwater drum off the piers.
St. Joseph: Lakers are being caught between 85 to 150 feet of water with the bottom 30 feet seeing the most action. Pier anglers are using frozen shrimp and casting spoons to get steelhead. Perch fishing from the pier is slow and the ones that are finding them are fishing very deep. Anglers continue to catch large numbers of sheepshead. Night crawlers fished just off the bottom is what is working best. Lake Michigan is producing lake trout at 120 to 250 feet with sporadic king salmon and coho deep. Inland lakes are seeing a lot of bluegill using wax and red worms.
St. Joseph River: Some walleye are being caught in the St. Joseph River and the perch is slow but with warmer water, they should increase in numbers. Some Skamania found below Berrien Springs. Walleye, channel catfish and flathead catfish are being caught as well.
Grand Haven: Salmon are being caught at 150 to 170 feet of water.
South Haven: Perch are still slow but waters are starting to warm. Some anglers have caught the limit and some are over a pound. Pier fishing for all species is slow. Fishing pressure is low also. Boat anglers fishing for perch are finding fishing difficult as they are in very deep water. Salmon from the net pens are starting to show up and are being recorded between 15 to 20 inches. Steelhead are between 14 and 16 inches. Excessive lake trout are being seen. In the river, casters are catching catfish, sheepshead and 3 to 5 pound smallmouth bass using crawlers and Yamamoto worms. Inland lakes nearby are noticing that fish are coming off the beds and going deeper.
Grand River at Grand Rapids: Flathead catfish are at their peak using creek chugs, live suckers and cut bait. Channel catfish are being lured in by chicken livers, shrimp and crawlers. Pike can be found with live suckers using floats 2 to 3 feet down. Smallmouth bass are prevalent in the morning with top water baits, while mid-day you can get them with two baits in the current. Big bluegill are being caught near 6th Street Dam with wax and leaf worms. Crappie are biting on minnows and twister tails while carp like Wheatie balls.
Reeds Lake: Large bass are being caught throughout the day. Pike are biting on bobbers. Anglers are seeing a lot of bluegill, perch and panfish. The lake is producing for slow trolling fishermen using suckers.
Dean Lake: Muskies are being caught using body baits and live suckers.
Grand River at Lansing (surrounding areas): North Lansing dam area anglers are seeing pike, carp, catfish and suckers by using minnows and night crawlers. At the Moore's Park dam they are catching catfish and bass using minnows or crawlers and carp using leeches and crawlers.
Jordan Lake: Wax and red worms are attracting bluegills.
Sessions Lake/Morrison Lake: Crappie and walleye are biting on minnows.
Sleepy Hollow: Bass are being snagged by minnows while red worms are attracting crappie.
Maple River: near Maple Rapids, suckers and catfish are being caught using crawlers.
Gun Lake: Good reports of northern pike and bass.
Gull Lake: Is seeing smallmouth bass, yellow perch and lake trout action.
Big Paw Paw Lake: Pike are biting pike minnows and walleye-like crawler harnesses while bass are being caught using plastic lures. Bluegill anglers are successful using red and wax worms while crappie are going after minnows.
Muskegon River: Trout, smallmouth bass and the ever so often walleye can be had on both fly gear as well as light spinning gear. For bigger fish during the daylight hours, caddis and nymphing are what's working. Streamers seem to do well when it's cloudy.
NORTHEAST LOWER PENINSULA
Rogers City: provided good lake trout fishing pretty much from the harbor on up the lake to Forty Mile Point. Anglers fished in 40 to 75 feet of water fishing just about anywhere in the water column. Cowbells with peanuts or spin glos have been very good. Trickles of salmon and steelhead are coming in. A few mayflies are beginning to show up; once they do expect the steelhead to be right with them.
Presque Isle: Most anglers were harvesting lake trout along with the occasional salmon. Try depths of 45 to 90 feet fishing through the entire water column.
Rockport: Anglers are taking lake trout in very deep water such as 3 miles out from the Nordimer Wreck. Anglers fishing at Rockport should target salmon about now. Salmon from the second year class were small last year but they should make for a nice catch this year. Anglers could also target steelhead around areas of mayfly hatches.
Alpena: Anglers reported fair walleye action, taking most fish from depths of 12 to 16 feet of water. The rain and east winds definitely slowed the bite, however. Anglers were bringing in good catches during the evening hours. The daytime hours have been less productive. Partridge Point and Sulfur Island were hot spots with anglers fishing blue and silver. It was slow this week on the river with the occasional walleye taken from either side of the foot bridge behind the Boys and Girls Club. Anglers fishing off the pier on the lake side had some luck catching walleye while fishing with leeches and crank baits.
Harrisville: Anglers are starting to head out after a week of bad weather. Lake trout have been caught in water depths of 60 to 80 feet of water. A few salmon are also being caught in that area on white/silver spoons, green fly's and cut bait.
Higgins Lake: Rock bass have been biting along with smallmouth as they are on the beds right now. Some perch and trout are also being caught.
Houghton Lake: Bass, walleye and panfish have been biting with the best luck using slip bobbers with a leech or a crawler.
Oscoda: It seems like the lake trout are more abundant and have moved into shallower waters. Anglers are reporting that they are setting down at 60 feet of water and working out, with most fish being caught before hitting 80 feet. There seem to be salmon in the same range as most of the charter boats are reporting catches with each outing. Baits vary from spoons, cut bait, and fly's behind flashers. Catfish have been in the river the last few nights. Anglers targeting them have had a lot of success, with fish ranging from 5 to 12 pounds.
Hubbard Lake: Anglers are targeting walleye and bass.
Tawas: Good catches of walleye inside the point near buoys (hash)4 and (hash)6 and by the artificial reef in roughly 15 to 20 feet of water using crank baits and also crawler harnesses. Walleyes are also being caught from buoy (hash)2 to the charities with bigger ones coming out toward charities. Look for rock bass, bluegill and carp along the piers.
Tawas River: Anglers are catching a few sheephead, catfish and suckers.
AuGres: Trollers were doing great on walleye with lots of limits in 30 to 40 feet of water all over and bigger fish coming toward the charities. Wind is the biggest factor limiting the catches.