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Gone fishin’

August 30, 2013
The Mining Journal

Upper Peninsula

Marquette: Most anglers are targeting lake trout but those using high lines for salmon and trout had mixed results. Lake trout were caught near the Clay Banks, Granite Island,and Shot Point in 120 to 130 feet of water. A few small coho were caught. Surface water temperatures were in the low 60's. Those fishing near the mouth of the Chocolay River had poor results. Anglers are being asked to participate with the creel census surveys that are being conducted in the area. The information you share plays a vital role in fisheries management on the Great Lakes.

Keweenaw Bay: Those heading out for trout and salmon had to work hard to get them. They caught a mix of chinook, coho and lake trout 40 to 90 feet down in 50 to 100 feet of water from Carla's Restaurant north past the red rocks and off Pequaming Point. Those jigging for lake trout had little success. Near the South Portage Entry, a fair number of lake trout, chinook and coho were taken near the lighthouse, the reefs and the Mud Banks. They are using a mix of spoons in a variety of colors. For Traverse Bay, lake trout action picked up some for those jigging in 170 to 220 feet off Gay Point and Big Louie's Point. Those trolling 60 to 145 feet down in 80 to 150 feet also caught fish.

AuTrain: Lake trout anglers have had mixed results depending on wind direction. The hot spots were the edge of the flats and the humps near the shipping lanes east of AuTrain Island in 140 to 200 feet. Offshore surface water temperatures have risen to the low 60's. No salmon to report.

Munising: Catch rates for chinook and coho were fair in Trout Bay and Munising Bay. Lake trout fishing continues north of Wood Island. A couple pier anglers were targeting splake but catch rates were slow.

Grand Marais: Lake trout anglers were fishing in 100 to 200 feet of water along the shipping channel, five to seven miles north of the bay. The fish have been feeding on insects and sculpin. Whitefish are feeding in the shallows. Coho anglers were fishing east or west of the bay in 50 to 60 feet. Shore anglers casting for pike had poor results.

Menominee: Bay anglers were trolling for walleye near Green Island. Catch rates were fair to good. No trout or salmon were caught. Those targeting walleye did best in the evening when trolling rapalas in 20 to 30 feet of water. Salmon anglers tried closer to shore because of the high winds but no fish were caught.

Menominee River: Is producing a fair number of walleye for those trolling rapalas and crawler harnesses. Many were on the small side. Shore and boat anglers caught smallmouth bass when floating crawlers or casting crank baits.

Cedar River: Those floating crawlers caught smallmouth bass.

Little Bay De Noc: Walleye anglers had fair catch rates near Kipling. They are trolling or drifting crawlers and stick baits in 15 to 25 feet between the Second and the Center Reef and along the drop near Gladstone in 25 feet. Fair to good perch action was reported off the mouth of the Escanaba River when using minnows and crawlers in 20 to 25 feet or the Second Reef in 8 to 17 feet. Smallmouth bass were caught on crawlers and crank baits near the mouth of the Ford River. A couple salmon were caught out near the Ford River Can when trolling spoons 60 to 70 feet down in 100 to 130 feet.

Big Bay De Noc: Had good smallmouth bass fishing for those using minnows or crank baits in 10 to 28 feet off Ansell's Point and the many shoals. Those trolling spoons or cut bait off Fairport did well 60 to 75 feet down in 120 to 130 feet of water.

St. Marys River: Walleye fishing in Raber Bay has slowed in the shipping channel from Point Aux Frenes to the old bell buoy. A few pike were caught on the southwest end of Neebish Island, at the mouth of the Munuscong River or the southwest end of Kemps Point when trolling chrome spoons or black bucktail spinners. Anglers need to watch for low water levels when boating on the St. Marys River and around Drummond Island.

DeTour: Anglers are still taking chinook and lake trout between Frying Pan Island, the No. 3 green can and the No. 2 red can out near Drummond Island. Chinook salmon are ranging 7 to 15 pounds. Hot colors are watermelon, green, purple and white.

Drummond Island: Wind direction did have an effect of walleye fishing. Fish were caught by those trolling crawler harnesses with bottom bouncers in 12 to 14 feet around Peck Island. Anglers had fair to good perch fishing in Maxton Bay. Most are drifting or still-fishing with medium size minnows near the red buoy located on the south end of Grape Island. A few nice pike were taken on the northwest side of the island when casting or trolling chrome spoons with a red eye in 8 feet of water. Smallmouth bass are hitting tube jigs near Harbor Island or a crawler with a slip bobber on the west side of Peck Island. Brown and green tube jigs worked well.

Cedarville and Hessel: Perch anglers have done well off the east end of the marina pier in Hessel Bay and off the public dock. They are using minnows or crawlers in 8 to 12 feet. The south end of Hessel Bay had excellent pike fishing for those using chubs. Salmon were caught in 50 to 70 feet in Hessel Bay and the Yacht Entrance.

St. Ignace: Had no change. Lake trout and salmon are still being caught around Mackinac Island, Round Island, Bois Blanc Island, the flats and the Coast Guard Station.

Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

The inland lakes such as Grand, Long and Hubbard are producing some very nice smallmouth bass. This is grasshopper and cricket season on the smaller trout streams and those using imitations are doing well.

Rogers City: Adult chinook are beginning to show up and they are good size. The better fishing was very early and after sunset when heading south towards Swan Bay and Adams Point but the fish are moving. Head to deeper water as the sun comes up while using downriggers, short segments of lead core, dipseys and copper with spoons, J-plugs, bombers and flashers with either squid or flies. Hot colors were green, blue, pearl, red, purple, orange with green or silver as well as black and white. Those fishing north and straight out of the harbor caught a mix of salmon, steelhead and walleye.

Presque Isle: Catch rates were slow but picking up. Anglers were hanging out in shallow waters 35 to 60 feet deep as they wait for the fish to come in and feed on the abundant baitfish. Try straight out or north between the two lighthouses and fish the top half of the water column.

Rockport: Is producing a few chinook, lake trout and walleye. Walleye were also caught in to 20 to 40 feet.

Alpena: Few anglers were out but they did manage to catch a couple smallmouth bass and the occasional walleye in Thunder Bay. The trick is to move around until you find fish.

Thunder Bay River: Catch rates have improved for smallmouth bass that average 12 to 14 inches but some were as big as 17 inches. Freshwater drum, channel catfish, and rock bass were caught. Most are using crawlers but a few did well with crank baits. A few salmon are in the river but catch rates were poor. Cooler weather is needed.

Harrisville: The fish are scattered so anglers will have to work for them. The walleye are deep, 100 to 140 feet and most were caught by those targeting trout and salmon with spoons and body baits. A few salmon were caught in the harbor but these fish seem to be early runners.

Oscoda: Fish are on the move so finding them can be difficult. Walleye are deep and were caught with the trout and salmon. Pier anglers caught a few salmon with glow spoons in the early morning or evening.

Au Sable River: Fishing below Mio has been very good and the white fly hatch should continue through the Labor Day weekend. Water temperatures have been fairly cool below Mio which means the fish have been active and healthy. Catfish are moving in and out of the river.

Higgins Lake: Was producing perch near the Sunken Island and along the drop offs. No big numbers but the fish were nice size. Those trolling just off the bottom in 80 to 120 feet caught lake trout on the north end including the north side of Treasure Island. Those jigging found lake trout and whitefish in 80 to 100 feet. Anglers are still catching lots of rock bass. This is a great fishery for kids.

Houghton Lake: Catch rates were slow but steady. Those using crawlers, leeches and leaf worms caught bass, walleye, and panfish.

Tawas: Boat and pier fishing in the bay are slow. A few walleye were taken off Alabaster, Au Sable Point and Jerry's Marina but anglers need to fish deeper water. One angler targeting walleye actually caught a 15 pound chinook in 80 feet of water when trolling a crawler harness.

Au Gres: A few walleye are still being caught straight out from the mouth of the river or six to eight miles south in 26 to 30 feet of water. Those targeting perch found a few in 30 to 40 feet four to eight miles to the south.

Au Gres River: Is producing a few catfish and freshwater drum.

Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Salmon fishing is going strong. At this point, offshore is the place to be, in depths deeper than 100 feet. Heavy south winds pushed the fish deep so the piers and drowned river mouth lakes have not been as productive.

Harbor Springs: Had a small number of salmon and lake trout in and around the harbor. Boat anglers were fishing around Harbor Point. Chinook were caught 70 to 90 feet down and lake trout 100 to 130 feet down. Try spoons, flies and squid. Green and white was the hot color.

Petoskey: Some boat anglers did catch the odd salmon or lake trout. Most were fishing from the water treatment plant and east to the buoy just past the pier. Salmon were caught 100 to 115 feet down on glow spoons, meat rigs and flies. A few lake trout were also caught.

Bear River: Had a few salmon moving in even with the low water levels. Those fishing up near the dam caught the occasional fish on spawn or yellow flies.

Charlevoix: Salmon fishing was still a bit slow as anglers were averaging maybe one fish per trip. Boats are trolling 60 to 85 feet down in 120 feet of water between North Point and South Point. Try plugs, spoons, meat rigs and dodgers with flies or squid. Lake trout were 80 to 125 feet down in 120 to 250 feet. Pier anglers are still taking sub-legal bass but a good number were also keepers. Try just off the bottom with crawlers, leeches or minnows. Some nice rock bass were caught near the end of the piers.

Lake Charlevoix: Anglers are marking some large fish where Round Lake comes into Lake Charlevoix.

Traverse City: Those trolling in the East Bay caught chinook 60 to 110 feet down in 80 to 200 feet. Try blue and green spoons with flies or glow spoons early and late. A few lake trout were caught. Those looking for smallmouth bass were fishing 20 to 50 feet or deeper. In the West Bay, salmon were found 40 to 100 feet down. Try spoons, plugs and meat rigs or flies with flashers. Those jigging in 110 feet caught the occasional whitefish or lake trout.

Elk River: Fishing was relatively slow with only smaller bass and panfish caught on crawlers or leeches. No large number of salmon yet.

Boardman River: Had a few salmon. Anglers were targeting chinook with spawn, flies and stick baits.

Frankfort: Good numbers of large chinook salmon have been caught between the piers, straight out and near the Herring Hole. The fish were starting to stage. Many are trolling 30 to 90 feet down in 200 to 225 feet. Platte Bay has coho running in 40 to 80 feet. Spoons work best. Pier fishing was good between 2:00am and daybreak for those casting wobblers. Green, orange and blue were good colors.

Betsie River: The chinook are in and all the way up to the Homestead Dam.

Onekama: Had good fishing just outside the "Barrel" when trolling 40 to 80 feet down with J-plugs in chrome, splatter back and perch or meat rigs. Lake trout are hitting on cowbells and spin-glows throughout the day.

Portage Lake: Continues to have good bass fishing for those working the weed beds and along the drop offs. A nice largemouth bass was caught off the wall in the channel. Panfish are hitting on worms along the weed beds in the morning and moving to deeper water by afternoon.

Lake Cadillac: Catch rates were very good for panfish and bass.

Lake Mitchell: Has also been good for bass and panfish.

Manistee: Salmon have been caught 40 to 80 feet down in 80 to 200 feet of water off the Shelf. Glow spoons and plugs worked well in low light, standard size spoons and meat rigs have produced during mid-day. Pier and harbor fishing was slow.

Manistee River: Anglers have caught a few salmon in the lower river. Try fishing the deeper holes as the fish will seek out colder water. Bass fishing slowed a bit but those fishing near the brush piles in the early morning or late evening should find some fish.

Ludington: Salmon are 40 to 90 feet down in 80 to 160 feet of water. Spoons, plugs and meat rigs are all taking fish. Pier and harbor fishing was slow.

Pentwater: Fishing was fair. Salmon were caught 50 to 70 feet down in 80 to 90 feet or as deep as 150 to 180 feet. Meat rigs were the ticket this week however fish were also taken on pearl colored J-plugs or spoons. Bass were caught by those using live bait in the channel.

Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake Erie: A few continue to fish for walleye but the majority are now perch fishing near the Raisin River Buoys 1 and 2, the humps around the Banana Dike or in 22 to 24 feet off Stony Point. No big numbers yet but those doing the best are moving around. Bass, white perch and freshwater drum have also been caught. Those launching out of Bolles Harbor were fishing in 17 to 20 feet around the E-Buoy and the Dumping Grounds. A good number of smallmouth bass have been caught in 8 to 12 feet throughout the lake.

Huron River: Is producing some white bass, smallmouth bass and panfish.

Detroit River: Perch fishing has been spotty. A couple anglers did find fish along the south end of Celeron Island. A few walleye were caught by those jigging.

Lexington: Lake trout, steelhead and chinook were caught in 105 to 140 feet of water. Salmon and steelhead are up high and the lake trout are at the bottom. Strong winds have stirred up the waters so it will take a few days for conditions to improve. Perch fishing was slow.

Harbor Beach: Recent storms have the fish scattered. Start shallow in 60 to 70 feet and work your way out deeper for salmon and steelhead. Try spoons off downriggers, lead lines with offshore boards. For lake trout, try using dodgers or cowbells with spin-glows, peanuts and spoons just off the bottom. For walleye, try 70 to 90 feet with small body baits and small spoons or crawler harnesses. Bass were caught by those trolling spoons and body baits. Perch fishing is slow.

Port Austin: Those trolling have caught steelhead, salmon and lake trout along the outside of the Thumb however recent winds have turned the lake over so finding the right temperatures means a trip out to at least 140 feet.

Saginaw Bay: Walleye fishing was on the slow side and perch fishing is slowly getting started. A few walleye were taken in 6 to 10 feet off the State Park, the mouth of the Kawkawlin River or out near the Black Hole in 14 feet. Anglers were drifting crawler harnesses above the weeds. Walleye were caught from the Slot and off the Bar but the average was one fish per angler. Catfish were caught from the Hot Pond.

Saginaw River: Smallmouth bass have been caught near Essexville.

Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

St. Joseph: Salmon have been caught in 100 feet of water. Pier fishing was slow. Catch rates for perch were good south of the piers in 20 feet of water.

St. Joseph River: Has some steelhead. Target the deeper holes.

South Haven: Salmon fishing remains consistent. No limit catches to report but the size of the chinook has been impressive. Boats are trolling in 100 to 130 feet. Catch rates for perch remain good north and south of the piers in 30 feet.

Holland: The better fishing was very early morning or at night. Try 45 to 80 feet down in 110 to 130 feet of water. Coppers are 300, 350, 400 and 450. Meat rigs are working best. Hot colors were blue and purple with 10 inch spinnies. Pier fishing is slow. Perch were caught on minnows in 35 to 45 feet.

Port Sheldon: Those fishing out near the "Bubbler" have caught perch.

Grand Haven: Boat anglers are fishing 60 to 95 feet down in 85-115 feet of water with glow plugs, green and yellow spoons and white paddles with a mirage fly. Perch fishing has slowed as the fish are moving out to deeper water. Pier anglers are struggling because of the warm water and the lack of baitfish.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Heavy rain should have pushed some steelhead and salmon up into the river. Walleye anglers were bouncing crawlers off the bottom. Catfish were hitting on cut bait. For bluegill and bass, try the bayous and backwaters.

Grand River at Lansing: Is producing catfish, carp, smallmouth bass and the occasional largemouth bass.

Lake Lansing: Is producing bass, bluegill and a few crappie.

Lake Insterstate: Is producing bluegill.

Muskegon River: Water levels were low and water temperatures were at or near 70 degrees. Trout fishing will be slow during the current warm spell but this is a great time for bass fishing.

Whitehall: Trout and salmon fishing was slow with few fish taken. Anglers could travel north and look for cooler water. Early morning is the best time to head out. Try any lure that glows, J-plugs, lead core and dipseys.

 
 

 

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