Thursday, July 9, 2015

Michigan Weekly Fishing Report

Click on the links below to jump to the report section that interests you most:
Southeast Lower Peninsula
Southwest Lower Peninsula
Northeast Lower Peninsula
Northwest Lower Peninsula
Upper Peninsula

Salmon in the Great Lakes were moving to deeper waters.  Rivers in some areas had higher water levels so catch rates were slow.  The inland lakes are producing some walleye, pike, bass, crappie, perch, bluegills, bullhead and gar.   
Lake Erie:  Fishing improved with more anglers reporting walleye catches in 23 to 28 feet around Stony Point, the Banana Dike, off Fermi and the around the E-Buoys.  Fish were also caught in Brest Bay.  Most are using pink, purple and margarita crawler harnesses.  Those using spoons and divers did not have as much luck.  Better perch fishing was reported by those using minnows in 15 to 20 feet.

River Raisin:  Had high water levels.  The Dundee Dam has been overflowing for weeks, and the fishing pier has been underwater for much of the season.
Lenawee County:  Bluegills are starting to make their way to deeper water in Devils Lake.  Try slip bobbers and worms near the weed beds in six to 12 feet.  Bass fishing was decent around the drop-offs and the flats when casting soft plastics and crank baits.  Pike anglers trolling in six to eight feet had good success.  Lake Hudson has good bass fishing for those using top water baits and artificial worms.  Muskie anglers are trying but most are only catching bass and channel cats.

Detroit River: Catch rates for walleye dropped on the northern half of the Canadian side.  Catch rates on the Michigan side were fair to poor between the Renaissance Center and the Ambassador Bridge, around Grosse Ile, Mud Island, Great Lakes Steel and at the mouth near Lake Erie.  Most are fishing deeper in 25 to 40 feet when bottom bouncing with crawler harnesses, trolling, drifting or hand-lining with spoons and stick baits.  Some fishing the Canadian side were jigging.  The river had walleye, bass and muskie anglers.  Those targeting walleye caught a fair number of rock bass, freshwater drum, a few white bass or muskie.  Bass anglers had fair to good results for both large and smallmouth around the islands, cuts and canals.  A few white bass were seen around Elizabeth Park.  Water temperatures were up near 68 degrees.  Anglers should be aware that high water levels at many of the boat launches have the docks partially underwater.
Lake St. Clair:  Water temperatures are up near 70 degrees and the mayfly hatch is in full swing.  Anglers may find good surface action for large and smallmouth bass on calm days when the mayflies are hatching and the bass are feeding.  The better reports have come from deeper water so try 10 to 16 feet where there is vegetation.  Muskie anglers had some success in Michigan waters over 12 feet deep. Perch fishing has been spotty, but some good reports have come from Goose Bay and Muscamoot Bay. Walleye fishing in Michigan waters was spotty.  Shore fishing for carp remains very good at the mouth of the Clinton River.

St. Clair River:  Walleye fishing was better after dark at Port Huron and Algonac where anglers are whipping and wire-lining.  Those fishing during the day did catch some fish in the lower river including the North, Middle and South Channels.  White bass are still in the lower river and the channels and can often be seen chasing shiners on the surface along the banks.  The water temperature was 61 degrees.

Black River:  Had slow catch rates due to stained water after all the rain.  White bass are in the mouth and some bigger smallmouth bass were caught off the wall.

Lexington & Port Sanilac:  A few boats have been out for perch but the weed beds are not up far enough yet to attract schools of fish.   

Harbor Beach:  Steelhead were caught using bright colored spoons off downriggers and lead lines.  Try some 2, 4, 8 and 10 colored lines with offshore boards.  Some nice lake trout were caught straight out and north of the harbor with clean spoons as well as dodgers with spin-glo’s in the bottom 60 feet of waters 120 to 140 feet deep.  Bass were caught by those casting spoons or body baits close to shore. 

Grindstone City:  Anglers fishing around Burnt Cabin Point in about 45 feet have caught some very large walleye and some nice whitefish.  They are running lead core and green and black or pearl crank baits.  Lake trout have moved deeper as the waters near shore have warmed up.  Try depths up to 120 feet.

Saginaw Bay:  Most boats caught walleye and a few managed to get limit catches though they were working pretty hard to get them.  They did well in the Slot between Quanicassee and Bay Port, along the Bar, and out near the Spark Plug.  Also notable are the weed beds off the Callahan Reef and the mouth of the Kawkawlin River which are very good producers of walleye in the early morning.  The bite tapers off as the sun gets higher and the fish move back out to deeper water.  Boats are fishing north and northeast of Buoys 1 & 2 in 28 to 32 feet with crawler harnesses, crank baits and spoons.  Best spinner colors were pink, purple, chartreuse, silver, gold and red.  For crank baits, use a crayfish pattern.  Those trolling out of Caseville are going northeast of the Charity Islands and up near Oak Point however northeast of the Charities was producing more fish.

Sanford Lake:  Limit and near-limit catches of black crappie were taken on live minnows in shallow water or pinkie jigs in deeper water.  Bass fishing was good and bluegills were hitting on worms.  A few pike and a couple walleye were caught.


St. Joseph:  
Perch fishing was good with fish taken in 20 to 35 feet.  Pier anglers are still catching the occasional steelhead when using shrimp under a bobber.  Salmon fishing was very spotty with only a few fish taken from 60 to well over 100 feet.  Meat rigs worked best.  Freshwater drum are still being caught in large numbers.  Try shrimp or alewife on the bottom.   

South Haven:  
Catch rates were not consistent for boat anglers targeting salmon because the fish were scattered in 80 to 100 feet.  Pier anglers are getting the occasional steelhead when floating shrimp under a bobber.  The fish seem to be there one day and gone the next.  Perch fishing was slow.  

Kalamazoo River:  
Was producing a limited number of fish as the water was high and dark.  Shore anglers have caught channel catfish.  

Grand Haven:  
The salmon were moving to deeper water.  Perch fishing was slow.  

Grand River at Grand Rapids:  
Water levels were down significantly.  Flathead and channel catfish continue to be caught on worms and bluegills. Carp fishing has slowed compared to the last few weeks.  Walleye and smallmouth bass have been caught off the wall by those using live bait.  Bluegills were caught in the backwaters.  
Grand River at Lansing:  
Those fishing near the dams have caught catfish, carp, smallmouth bass and rock bass.  

Muskrat Lake:  
Crappie were caught early or late.  Bluegills moved to deeper water and were hitting on crawlers, wax worms, and leeches.  

Lake Ovid:  
Anglers caught small bluegills and a couple catfish.  

Montcalm County:  
Large pike 35 to 39 inches and some bass were caught on Big Whitefish Lake.  Crystal Lake was producing some walleye and large bluegills.  Tamarack Lake had a lot of small perch.   
Lake Michigan anglers are taking the most fish in 100 to 130 feet.  Salmon were caught on dipseys and dodgers 50 feet down and steelhead were caught in the top 25 feet.

Muskegon River:  
Undersized walleye and trout are plentiful in the upper and lower portions near Hardy Dam and Croton Dam.


Burt Lake: 
Was producing some walleye.  Bass have been caught but catch rates were slowing.  

Rogers City:  
Boat anglers need to use caution and watch for trap nets that have been set just south of Hammond Bay and along the slide which is in 60 to 80 feet.  Lake trout were caught in good numbers with limit catches possible.  The fish are now suspended more than ever so run your lines throughout the water column.  Dodgers and cowbells with spin-glo’s along with green, blue, yellow or white spoons have caught fish over the rocky areas.  Try 50 to 70 feet towards Forty Mile Point or south towards Adams Point.  The occasional Atlantic, Chinook, coho and steelhead were also caught.  It is still slow but a few more are coming in.  Try 60 to 120 feet and look for baitfish while running green, blue and orange spoons up high in the water column.  We need stable weather to set up a thermocline.    

East & West Twin Lakes:  
Walleye fishing was slow on East Twin but West Twin was good with fish ranging 15 to 19 inches.  Anglers are trolling natural baits or using deep diving rapalas in 10 feet.  Good bass fishing on both lakes.  Lots of rock bass in four to six feet near the boat launch on West Twin.  Bluegill and perch fishing were good.  

The better walleye fishing will be found in warmer water.  Before the cool spell, fish were caught out from the marina and around Grass Island in eight to 20 feet with crawler harnesses and body baits.  Lake trout can still be found around Thunder Bay Island but fewer will be seen as the water warms.  Try out near the wreck or head for the “Humps”.  A few trout and salmon could hit on spoons fished higher in the water column.   

Thunder Bay River:  
Remains slow for the most part with only a few small rock bass or freshwater drum caught on worms.  The occasional walleye was caught off the 9th Street Bridge in the late evening.

Fishing is good with lake trout the most abundant followed by Chinook and steelhead.  Boats are fishing 20 to 30 feet off the bottom in 80 to 150 feet.  Start shallow in the early morning and head deeper as the day goes on with spoons and wobble glo’s or spin-glo’s behind dodgers and cowbells.  Walleye fishing is up and down with most fish taken in 12 to 25 feet between Sturgeon Point and the Black River.  Work the drops and rock shoals with crawler harnesses and body baits.  

Pier fishing picked up for walleye, channel catfish and smallmouth bass now that the freshwater drum slowed.  Anglers are using body baits, stick baits, crawlers and minnows.  Lake trout were hitting on spoons and spin-glo’s in 90 to 150 feet.  Some reported steelhead on the scum lines so fish the surface on calm days.   

Au Sable River: 
 Anglers reported the hex hatches were happening and trout were being caught.  The fish were decent size but low numbers.  Anglers were taking nice catches of brown trout on the South Branch. 

Houghton Lake:  
Walleye and northern pike fishing were good.  Try crawler harnesses and leeches along the weed lines when trolling or drifting.  

Those trolling south of Tawas Point caught walleye in 50 to 70 feet when using crawler harnesses and spoons.  Limit catches were taken further south off Whitestone Point in 30 feet.  Pier and river fishing were both slow with only catfish, smallmouth bass and freshwater drum taken.  

Au Gres:  
Had lots of walleye anglers taking fish just about everywhere.  Some were heading northeast or Big Charity Island and some were going eight to 10 miles south of Pointe Au Gres.  In general, anglers caught walleye everywhere in 20 to 50 feet.  Limits were not common but everybody was getting some fish.  

Au Gres River: S
hore anglers were getting some catfish.


Harbor Springs:  
Lake trout are scattered from Harbor Point to 7 Mile.  Fish were caught on spoons and spin-glo’s 60 to 90 feet down in a variety of depths.  Rumor has it a couple salmon were taken around the Point.  Few bass anglers were out.    

Also has scattered lake trout with fish caught 20, 60 and 90 feet down.  Most are fishing between the breakwall and Bay Harbor but a few had luck in front of the waste water treatment plant.  Spoons were the ticket.  A few smallmouth bass were caught near Bay View but no fish were on the beds.  They were seen in large groups and not interested in hitting any kind of bait.  Those fishing between the mouth of the river and the breakwall caught smallmouth bass, rock bass, bullhead, carp, suckers, pike and freshwater drum. 

Bear River:  
Higher water levels recently did produce a couple steelhead and brown trout.  Anglers use spawn bags and cut bait this time of year.   

Lake trout are still scattered throughout the water column.  Most anglers are using spoons and spin-glo’s.  A small Chinook was caught off Fisherman’s Island State Park in the middle of the water column so anglers are hoping a few more will start showing up.  Those fishing the channel caught both sub-legal and keeper size smallmouth bass.  Lots of freshwater drum will keep anglers busy as they are hitting on just about anything.  Not many walleye or Cisco were seen.   

Elk River: 
 Is producing smallmouth bass, rock bass, and the occasional brown trout.  Most anglers are using live bait or tube baits.  

Traverse City:
 The East Bay is producing lake trout and a few whitefish.  The lake trout were in 80 to 120 feet.  Smallmouth bass fishing has slowed even though there were still some fish on the beds.  The West Bay is producing lake trout along with the occasional Cisco or whitefish.  Lake trout fishing was steady in 95 to 120 feet.  Smallmouth bass were caught in waters five to 20 feet deep.  

Boardman River:  
Rock bass, carp, and a few smallmouth bass have been caught between the mouth and the Union Street Dam.  

Cooler waters have set in.  Those heading offshore for steelhead were trolling orange spoons in the top 50 feet. 

Anglers trolling the Barrel had some luck for lake trout when bouncing cowbells and spin-glo’s off the bottom.  Meat rigs 60 to 80 feet down in 150 to 180 feet were getting the most action for Chinook salmon.  

Portage Lake: 
 Bass anglers were picking up good numbers of largemouth bass when working the drops and shallow areas with structure.  Panfish were hitting on worms in 15 to 20 feet but many were small.  

Anglers venturing offshore looking for temperature breaks are finding steelhead along with a few lake trout and coho salmon. Try the top 30 feet with orange spoons.  A few salmon were caught 20 to 80 feet down in 120 to 240 feet with green and blue spoons or green and red meat rigs.

Manistee River: 
A fair number of salmon were already making their way up the Little Manistee.  Anglers are getting a couple steelhead mixed in with some planted trout on the Big Manistee.   

Boat anglers here are also looking for the temperature breaks and taking steelhead and lake trout in the top 30 feet.  Orange and gold colored spoons are working well.  Trout and salmon were also caught 25 to 100 feet down in 100 to 220 feet with orange and green spoons or yellow and red meat rigs.  Those bottom bouncing for lake trout have done well with dodgers and spin-glo’s.  

Pentwater Lake:  
Had a good number of anglers fishing along the shoreline and the channel however most of them caught freshwater drum. 


Lake Gogebic:  
This week was much better for fishing and in the hunt for legal walleye; although an abundance of small 13 inch walleye were the most common.  Anglers are still-fishing with minnows or leeches.

Menominee River:  
Walleye, catfish, and smallmouth bass were caught by boat and shore anglers using spoons, spinners, crank baits and live bait.  

Little Bay De Noc:  
Walleye anglers reported some action down at Breezy Point when trolling or drifting crawlers and stick baits in eight to 16 feet.  A few catches were reported at the mouth of the Escanaba River in 12 to 22 feet and at Kipling in 18 to 30 feet.  Perch anglers had very little action with only small fish caught on worms in six to 24 feet around Kipling.   Smallmouth bass fishing was slower than normal throughout the Bay.  Most were casting spinners or plastics near the mouth of the Ford River.  Salmon anglers are not marking very many fish but the freshwater drum and the channel cats are very active.  Those targeting walleye have caught a lot of catfish near the mouth of the Day’s River and the Escanaba River when trolling crawler harnesses.     

Big Bay De Noc:  
Has a similar scenario with anglers reporting a lot of freshwater drum.  Smallmouth bass anglers have struggled all year. The water in the northern Bay is stained and the fish have been very illusive. Ogontz Bay and Kates Bay both reported catches but fewer than previous years. Walleye anglers had a few catches when trolling crawlers in 14 to 17 feet in Ogontz Bay.  At Fairport, salmon anglers are struggling as most reported few or no catches 30 to 60 feet down in 130 feet.

 Had fair to good catch rates for lake trout in the Upper and Lower Harbors.  Try the White Rocks, Granite Island and the Sand Hole in 180 to 225 feet or deeper.  The flying ants are out and the black flies are increasing with the warmer weather.  Success for lake trout was fair near Shot Point.  High-lines were not producing salmon.  No steelhead or brown trout to report.     

Au Train Lake:  
Numbers of surfacing fish were observed feeding on forage and surface insects the past week – possibly smallmouth bass or northern pike.  Anglers did poorly for walleye and northern pike but did manage to catch several undersize pike averaging 16 to 20 inches.  No perch to report.  

Had low catch rates with only a couple undersize splake reported. Boat anglers were trying to find fish when trolling in waters 60 to 200 feet deep.  Those using fresh spawn caught small splake off the dock of the Anna River.   

Grand Marais:  
Whitefish are hit-or-miss as catch rates were good some days and not so good on others when using a single egg.  Those trolling were heading out five to ten miles for lake trout.  Catch rates were good with most ranging 18 to 30 inches.

South Manistique Lake: 
 Bluegill and pike activity is on the rise.  Pike were reported in the first cove north from Wolf Bay and were caught by those trolling bright colored spinners.  Brotherton Bay had bluegills moving on the beds.  Anglers are using artificial spiders and poppers on fly rods.  Walleye fishing is down but a good number of largemouth bass were reported near the boat launch adjacent to Sunset Pines Resort.  

Bass fishing has been good in a number of area lakes.  Anglers are finding them in the near shore areas as spawning and bedding comes to an end.  
Lake trout have been caught along the DeTour Reef.  Currently, try the flat directly two miles south of the lighthouse in 80 feet with hammered gray or silver colored spoons.  Fish were also caught 35 to 40 feet down in 60 to 80 feet between the green can and the lighthouse.  On the island side of the light, troll from the red can back to the lighthouse.  Salmon fishing was slow.  The thermocline was holding at 52 degrees in waters 45 to 50 feet deep.  

Drummond Island: 
 Lake herring were caught on the south end in the Third Bay which is east of Whitney Bay.  Swedish pimples tipped with wax worms or mayfly skins with 4 to 6 pound test works best where fly hatches are occurring.  If they will not bite, move away from the fly hatch and fish 35 to 40 feet deep because herring stage in deeper water adjacent to the fly hatches. Walleye and smallmouth bass are still fair on the north shore of Scott Bay when trolling or casting orange and chartreuse crank baits early morning and evening. Bruce Point is producing some nice smallmouth 17 to 19 inches for those jigging dark brown and green tube baits four to six feet near the rock piles.  

Cedarville and Hessel:  
Perch fishing was slow in Hessel Bay but good towards the east end of Cedarville Bay.  The Moscow Channel is very good but not every day.  Pike fishing is good all through the islands when still-fishing with chubs.  Try casting in the shallow bays for bass.  Herring have started to bite with many limit catches reported.

Carp River:  
Try fishing the mouth for walleye, pike or bass. 

Brevoort Lake: 
 Is producing panfish and pike.