Heavy rainfall will contribute to high water levels on many rivers and streams, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources said Wednesday in its weekly fishing report.
Shore and boat anglers will need to use caution, the DNR said. It said warm water temperatures on the inland lakes as well as the Great Lakes have anglers fishing in deeper water.
Marquette: Surface water temperatures were in the lower 60s. Catch rates were scattered, with a few limit catches reported north of the White Rocks, Granite Island and the Clay Banks. Those jigging for lake trout struggled near the White Rocks. The better lake trout action continues to be off Stannard Rock. Most of the fish are averaging 3 pounds but a few in the 15 to 20 pound range were also caught.
Keweenaw Bay: A few lake trout and coho were picked up by those trolling 35 to 80 feet down in 40 to 90 feet of water from Sand Point north to the Red Rock Cliffs. Those jigging in 200 to 260 feet of water off Pequaming Point and the south end of Big Reef caught a few lake trout. Along the South Portage Entry, lake trout were caught 90 to 180 feet of water near Farmers Reef, Newton Reef, Big Reef and the Mud Banks. In Traverse Bay, anglers are doing well when trolling in 60 to 140 feet of water along Five and Seven Mile Reefs or 130 to 185 feet of water off Big Louie's Point and Gay Point.
AuTrain: Catch rates increased ,with lake trout caught in 170 to 210 feet of water. The best areas were two to three miles northwest or east of AuTrain Island. A few fish were caught over the flats near Shelter Bay in 100 feet of water. The fish averaged 3 pounds. Those jigging reported slow catch rates. Surface temperatures have increased to 60 degrees near shore and upper 50s near the shipping channel.
Manistique: Chinook and steelhead were caught by those going out a good 12 miles to waters 120 to 150 feet deep. Most are trolling spoons in different sizes and colors along with flies in the evening or early morning.
Manistique River: Those willing to put in the time have caught pike, smallmouth bass and walleye. Lots of freshwater drum and carp also in the mix. Shore anglers are still-fishing with crawlers or leeches while boat anglers are trolling spoons, crank baits or rapalas. Early evening was best near the mouth.
St. Marys River: Upstream at Munuscong Lake, walleye and pike are in the channel and hitting on orange or chartreuse crawler harnesses with bottom bouncers. A few walleye and musky were caught in Raber Bay when trolling crawler harnesses with bottom bouncers along the north end of Round Island.
DeTour: Some are trolling the shipping channel to the (hash)3 Green Can and the lighthouse or the Drummond Island side to the (hash)2 Red Can while others are heading three miles south to get limits of lake trout. Spoon colors include white with colored stripes, blue with white scallops, and green with black dots. Good catches of perch were taken near the Yacht Haven Dock on Drummond Island. Most fish were in the 6 to 8 inch range.
Menominee: Salmon anglers reported slow catch rates near Green and Chambers Island. Those heading north of Menominee and fishing in Michigan waters did find some salmon along with steelhead and brown trout.
Menominee River: Catch rates were slow as water levels were low. Those drifting crawlers did catch smallmouth bass, catfish, freshwater drum and rock bass.
Little Bay De Noc: Walleye anglers fishing Breezy Point are trolling or drifting crawlers in 10 to 16 feet of water. Catch rates were spotty but fish were caught. The most consistent areas were the "Narrows" in 20 to 30 feet of water, near the mouth of the Escanaba River and out near the Black Bottom in 12 to 20 feet of water. Most are jigging, trolling or drifting crawlers. Good perch fishing just north of the "Narrows" in 19 to 30 feet of water when still-fishing with crawlers. Lots of freshwater drum have been caught throughout the bay especially near the flats off Kipling. Salmon anglers marked fish in 70 to 80 feet of water just south of Aronson Island but no fish were caught.
Big Bay De Noc: Walleye anglers fishing primarily in the southern waters were catching fish. Very good smallmouth bass fishing off Ansell's Point and Porcupine Point for those casting tube baits or trolling crank baits in 12 to 17 feet of water. Perch were taken in Garden Bay when still-fishing with worms in 8 to 10 feet of water. Freshwater drum have also been caught. Salmon anglers off Fairport have started to catch fish when trolling spoons or artificial cut bait 60 to 75 feet down in 70 to 100 feet of water. Bait fish are still in the area.
Cedarville and Hessel: Northern pike and yellow perch fishing was excellent in Hessel Bay. Pike are hitting on chubs in 8 to 13 feet of water. Musky Bay and Government Bay were also good for pike in 10 to 15 feet of water. Good perch fishing off the marina dock, Haven Island and the first cut of Snows Channel. Try minnows or crawlers in 8 to 13 feet of water.
St. Ignace: Fishing pressure has increased as more head out for chinook, lake trout, and steelhead. One angler brought in a 27 pound chinook. Most are fishing from the Coast Guard area across the bay to old fuel tanks and the Northeast and southwest corners of Mackinac Island. Hot colors were green, black ladder with chartreuse, and shades of blue. Try the primitive launch on the east side of the bridge for pike or large and smallmouth bass.
NORTHEAST LOWER PENINSULA
Rockport: Was producing walleye around Middle Island in 30 to 40 feet of water for those trolling body baits. Trout and salmon were caught out near the Nordmeer Wreck in 120 to 150 feet of water. Green was the hot color.
Alpena: Fishing pressure has slowed right along with walleye catches. A few were caught around Sulfur Island in 40 to 50 feet of water with crawler harnesses or body baits. Some are traveling twenty to thirty miles offshore and fishing the "Humps" for trout and salmon. Lake trout were on the bottom but salmon were only 60 feet down in 150 feet of water.
Thunder Bay River: Is producing smallmouth bass and walleye during the evening hours. Walleye were targeting body baits more than natural baits. Catfish have been caught during the evening hours when using crawlers or leeches.
Harrisville: Lake trout are moving out to deeper water. Fish were caught near the bottom in 130 to 150 feet of water on spoons and flies that glow behind dodgers and flashers. Hot colors were green, white or blue. Steelhead were in 70 to 100 feet of water near the scum line. Orange, blue, black and purple worked best. Walleye were caught around and north of the harbor in 25 to 50 feet of water when using planer boards with crawler harnesses or body baits.
Oscoda: Walleye were caught out deep in 100 feet of water. Those trolling for steelhead and lake trout have also caught walleye on spoons. Lake trout were deep in 150 feet of water and hitting on spoons, flies and cut bait. A few salmon were caught in the early morning in 90 to 100 feet of water.
Au Sable River: Walleye fishing has slowed to almost a trickle with only a couple fish caught all day, and those fish measured 8 to 17 inches.
Tawas: Most walleye anglers are crossing Saginaw Bay and fishing around the reefs between Caseville and Port Austin. A few boats are still fishing around Tawas Point and north toward Au Sable Point in 35 to 50 feet of water. A couple perch were caught out near Buoy (hash)2. One boat fished deep water along the temperature break off Alabaster and came back with six nice steelheads. Pier anglers are catching a mix of bass and panfish, including yellow perch, but many were small.
Au Gres: Those trolling for walleye are heading out to the Charity Islands and Hat Point Reef. Walleye were taken in waters anywhere from 12 to 60 feet deep.
NORTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA
Traverse City: Most of the boats have been out for recreation and not fishing. A few lake trout were caught by those jigging. In the East Bay, freshwater drum and sub-legal smallmouth bass were caught near Elk Rapids.
Frankfort: Big chinook salmon are hitting with several fish in the 22 to 25 pound range. In the morning, head north while trolling spoons 45 to 70 feet down in 90 to 145 feet of water. Lake trout were also caught in the same area, most likely due to the large number of baitfish. For steelhead, use orange spoons in the top 45 feet of water and bump up your trolling speed just a bit. Some nice brown trout were caught.
Onekama: The shelf from Bar Lake to the golf course has produced good catches in the morning and evening. Spoons in the morning but some nice chinook were caught on meat rigs in the evening when trolling 45 to 75 feet down in 110 to 165 feet of water. Lake trout and steelhead were also caught in the same range.
Lake Cadillac: Is producing some crappie on the east end of the lake for those fishing around structure. Fish a foot or two off the bottom in 10 to 12 feet of water with a curly tail jig. Fish the weed beds for pike and bass.
Lake Mitchell: Is producing a good number of largemouth bass and pike along the weed beds in the coves. Most of the pike have been sub-legal. Try casting spinner baits, small spoons, or surface baits.
Manistee: Salmon fishing was slow but some nice chinook were caught 40 to 80 feet down in 80 to 160 feet of water. Try running blue spoons or glow spoons in low light conditions. Pier fishing is slow.
Ludington: Steelhead and small chinook were caught offshore by those using orange spoons. While the action was slow, a couple chinook over 20 pounds were taken in 50 to 150 feet of water with green or blue spoons. Pier fishing is slow.
SOUTHEAST LOWER PENINSULA
Lake Erie: Strong storms and algae blooms have slowed catch rates as the fish have moved out to deeper water. A few limits of walleye were caught north of the E-Buoy in 28 feet of water. More walleye were caught using crawler harnesses and bottom bouncers as opposed to spoons or body baits. Those fishing off Sterling State Park are finding fish right along the Michigan-Ohio border line. Some nice perch were taken off the Dumping Grounds right off Toledo Beach when using emerald shiners or metallic colored perch rigs.
Huron River: Is producing a few bass, bluegills, catfish and carp. Catfish are hitting on leeches and the carp are hitting on flavored baits.
Detroit River: A few walleye have been caught around Horse Island for those hand-lining small rapalas, spoons or flat fish with a piece of crawler in 8 to 12 feet of water. A few perch were caught south of Sugar Island and Celeron Island. Good smallmouth action near Elizabeth Park. Try crawlers or leeches.
Lake St. Clair: Muskie fishing is good with some very nice fish caught. Perch are there but the fish are scattered. Find a school of fish and anchor.
Lexington: Most anglers are after yellow perch but catch rates here were a bit slow.
Port Sanilac: Perch anglers are doing well in 18 to 22 feet of water both north and south of the harbor. Move around until you find an active school of fish. Pier anglers are catching a mix of bass, panfish, bullhead and catfish.
Harbor Beach: Storms did slow fishing but catch rates should pick back up. Try straight out and north of the harbor using dodgers with spin glows close to the bottom or spoons off downriggers in the bottom 60 feet of water. Use clean spoons off the downriggers. Steelhead fishing was fair. Color lines are best and keep them up high. Put out 2, 3 and 5 color lead lines on boards with bright colored spoons. Regular and magnum work best. Head straight out and north of the harbor in 70 feet of water and work your way out as the sun comes up to 120 to 160 feet of water. Walleye action gets better as the water warms up. Try north of the harbor and up toward Port Hope in 25 to 50 feet of water with crawler harnesses or small spoons. Those casting spoons or body baits inside the harbor have caught bass and pike.
Grindstone City: Had excellent walleye fishing in 30 to 50 feet of water. Walleye fishing dominates from Grindstone to Port Hope. Those trolling small spoons near the bottom have also caught some whitefish.
Port Austin: Had excellent walleye fishing around the reefs between Caseville and Port Austin, with best fishing from Hat Point northeast toward Port Austin. Most are using crawler harnesses, body baits and small spoons in waters 12 to 60 feet deep.
Saginaw Bay: The walleye have gone deep in response to the extremely hot weather so fishing the inner bay has definitely slowed down. The hot spots to fish right now would be Hat Point to Harbor Beach. Along the inner bay, the action was slow but a few fish were still caught beyond Buoys 1 and 2, around the Pinconning Bar, the south of the end of the Slot, and in deeper water between the Spark Plug and Buoys 1 and 2. Body baits were out-producing crawler harnesses, and those trolling were moving along between 1.9 and 2.1 mph. Crawler harnesses were still taking some walleye along with the occasional freshwater drum or catfish. Try purple and gold spinners. Perch fishing is just getting started around the Black Hole and east of the Spark Plug in 25 feet of water.
SOUTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA
St. Joseph: Perch fishing remains very good in 25 feet of water. Most anglers are after the perch so not much to report on trout and salmon. Pier fishing was slow except for freshwater drum.
South Haven: Has good perch fishing in 20 feet of water. Boat anglers did go out to 100 feet of water and caught a few trout and salmon. Pier fishing is very slow.
Grand Haven: The water is very warm which makes salmon fishing a bit more difficult. Most were fishing 30 to 90 feet down in 70 to 130 feet of water with spinnies and green flies. Spoons are still working the best and the hot colors were orange for up high or blue and green in deeper water. Pier anglers caught freshwater drum.
Grand River at Grand Rapids: There are rumors of summer steelhead being caught up near the Sixth Street Dam, but no confirmation. Those looking for catfish should find them even in the high water levels but bring your heavy tackle.
Grand River at Lansing: Water levels are still high and running fast. Catfish will hit in high water conditions but anglers will need to use heavy tackle to keep the bait near the bottom. Try shrimp, dead minnows, crawlers or leeches.
Lake Ovid: Is producing some catfish and a few largemouth bass.
Muskegon: Also has warm water. Try 40 to 90 feet down in 70 to 170 feet of water with green and white spin/fly combos or trolling orange spoons near the surface or blue and green in deep water.
Whitehall: Has seen some good trout and salmon fishing with most boats staying in 80 feet of water. The temperature break was located out near 50 feet of water. Good numbers of chinook and steelhead have been caught out from Duck Lake and to the south or north in front of the Clay Banks. No salmon off the piers yet only bass and freshwater drum.