Boat anglers trolling in near-shore waters of Lake Superior were having fair action for salmon and lake trout, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources said this week in its weekly fishing report.
Marquette: Lake Superior anglers had fair to good salmon action toward Shot Point when trolling in waters less than 70 feet deep. Lake trout action was scattered but fish were caught north of Granite Island, near Little Presque Isle and toward Shot Point in 100 to 150 feet of water. Water temperatures remain cool in the upper 30's except near the mouth of the Chocolay River, where it was warmer at 42 degrees.
AuTrain: Catch rates were fair in Shelter Bay. Anglers did pick up a few lake trout near the mouth of the AuTrain River and those fish had a fair number of smelt in their stomachs.
Munising: Boat anglers have started to target chinook in the bay. Catch rates were slow with a mix of chinook, coho and splake. Boats were coming in with up to four fish on a good trip. Shore anglers still-fishing with spawn caught steelhead and splake. Pier fishing was poor.
Grand Marais: Pier anglers caught mostly whitefish with a few coho and menominee in the mix. A few limit catches of whitefish were reported. The average size of the fish has begun to increase but smaller fish were biting before sunrise and after sunset. Success for whitefish depends heavily on wind conditions. Boat activity was slow, but reports indicate there is still a fair number of coho and steelhead hanging around the bay.
Keweenaw Bay: Chinook, coho and lake trout were caught but fishing was slow. Most anglers were trolling between the Head of the Bay and Sand Point but a few did venture out as far as Carla's Restaurant and fished in 40 to 60 feet of water. Trolling speeds were between 1.9 and 2.5 mph.
Falls River: Steelhead fishing was slow.
Ontonagon: Fishing continues to be very good with more lake trout showing up this week. The fish are full of smelt so when you find a school of them, turn around and troll over that area with small spoons or body baits. Average weight of fish caught was lake trout 4 to 5 pounds, chinook 4 to 8 pounds, coho about 2 pounds and brown trout 2 to 4 pounds. Hot colors were orange, green, white and purple.
Menominee: Those launching from the Cedar River and trolling spoons or stick baits did catch a couple trout north and south along the shoreline. Those walleye fishing off Stony Point caught very few fish. Shore anglers caught bass and suckers however bass season is closed.
Menominee River: Had anglers fishing from shore and wading from Stephenson Island upstream to the Hattie Street Dam as water levels were back down. Early morning and late evening was best for walleye. Catch rates were fair. Trout fishing was slow with only a few fish taken on the Michigan side near the dam. Suckers are still in the river.
Little Bay De Noc: Had fair to good perch fishing however catch rates did slow.
The best action was in 22 feet of water out from the Vagabond Resort when using crawlers. Fish were also caught just north of the Narrows in the Kipling Flats by those using crawlers or minnows in 45 feet of water.
Day's River: Had fair to good steelhead action for those fishing between the first bridge and the golf course.
Big Bay De Noc: A few perch were caught in Garden Bay but anglers are releasing a lot of small ones. Most were using crawlers or minnows in 8 to 10 feet of water. Perch were caught in 18 to 35 feet of water off Garden Bluff. Anglers in both bays are now getting ready for the walleye opener on May 15th.
Cedarville and Hessel: Fishing was slow for Atlantic salmon and splake in Hessel Bay and Wilderness Bay. Anglers are casting or trolling with minnows, smelt or stick baits. No perch activity.
Carp River: Fishing is slow as the steelhead run is near the end however brook trout and brown trout are still catchable all summer long.
NORTHEAST LOWER PENINSULA
Cheboygan River: Anglers are still seeing steelhead at the Lock and the Paper Mill but they only caught suckers. Those fly fishing are using artificial flies in all colors, yarn or eggs. Walleye anglers are using night crawlers.
Rogers City: Those fishing from the breakwall caught Atlantic salmon and brown trout when casting small spoons or body baits. Use bright colors like orange and silver or chartreuse. Boat anglers are fishing in waters 50 feet deep or less with spoons or body baits trolled high off downriggers. Good colors were orange or blue with silver, fire-tiger or chartreuse. For lake trout, fish the bottom with cowbells or dodgers and spin-glows or look for the fish to be suspended.
Presque Isle: Has produced some large lake trout 10 to 20 feet off the bottom in 50 to 100 feet of water on cowbells or dodgers and spin-glows. The shallow water fishery has not quite taken off yet, maybe another week or so. The trout were full of gobies. Stoneport produced Atlantic salmon on bright colored spoons of body baits.
Rockport: Anglers were targeting Atlantic salmon along the shoreline, near the stairs and off the old pier.
Thunder Bay River: Anglers are fishing the 9th Street Dam with crawlers, flies and artificial baits. Anglers are targeting walleye off the bridge. Some were brown trout fishing off the 2nd Street Bridge.
Harrisville: Windy conditions kept most boats off the lake. Shore anglers managed to catch walleye on small spoons or body baits in the early morning or late evening.
Oscoda: Walleye, Atlantic salmon and steelhead are being caught around the pier. Try crawlers or body baits.
Au Sable River: Boats drifting caught walleye on crawlers with bottom bouncers. Steelhead are still making their way up to the dam. Fresh fish are still in the river even though the run is winding down. Flies are working best.
Tawas: Walleye, lake trout, brown trout and even a couple steelhead were caught by those trolling body baits in 20 to 30 feet of water out near Tawas Point and Buoy (hash)2. Pier anglers were catching and sorting perch inside the harbor or catching a few walleye and brown trout on the outside. Try casting body baits or still-fishing with large minnows.
Au Gres: Those trolling between Whitestone Point and Pointe Au Gres caught walleye on crawler harnesses or body baits in 20 to 30 feet of water.
Au Gres River: Was high and muddy after all the rain.
NORTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA
Harbor Springs: Lake trout were caught near Harbor Point by those trolling cow bells and spinners.
Petoskey: Had slow fishing and very few anglers. A boat trolling near Bay Harbor caught one sub-legal walleye.
Bear River: Catch rates for steelhead were steadily declining but some ripe females were still being caught by those floating spawn bags near the dam.
Charlevoix: Fishing was slow for those targeting walleye in the evening while casting natural and artificial baits. Boats were trolling for walleye in the channel.
Elk River: Still has a few steelhead. Try drifting fresh spawn bags or a jig tipped with wax worms. There's an abundance of suckers in the river as well as some smallmouth bass.
Traverse City: Anglers in both the East Bay and the West Bay have taken lake trout when jigging. A few cisco and whitefish were also caught. In the West Bay, boat anglers have started to catch lake trout when trolling in 20 to 40 feet of water in the southeast portion of the bay. Shore anglers at the mouth of the Boardman River and the Maritime Academy have caught lake trout, walleye and a few smallmouth bass.
Boardman River: Steelhead fishing is all but over however anglers will find a good number of suckers along with a few carp, smallmouth bass and walleye.
Platte Bay: Fishing has picked up with catches of large lake trout and some brown trout taken in 15 to 50 feet of water. Try spoons or plugs.
Frankfort: Catch rates were a bit slower but anglers were still catching chinook 65 to 90 feet down in waters 140 to 220 feet deep. Meat rigs worked best. Brown trout were caught on black and gold body baits between the pier heads. Schools of alewife were seen outside the piers.
Onekama: Anglers fishing 80 to 90 feet down in waters 200 feet deep did catch some fish. Once anglers started marking fish, they caught fish however the trick was trying to locate them.
Portage Lake: Bass anglers were doing very well during the catch and immediate release season. Walleye anglers caught some nice fish as well.
Manistee: The city fish cleaning station is now open. Salmon were caught 80 to 160 feet down in waters 150 to 300 feet deep. Meat rigs and flasher-fly combos worked best when trolling along the shoreline. A few brown trout were taken on stick baits and small spoons. Pier fishing for perch and brown trout was slow.
Ludington: The dock at the Loomis Street boat launch has been pulled due to dredging. Anglers can use the Copeyan Park boat launch until the dock is replaced. Boat anglers caught salmon 70 to 150 feet down in waters 150 to 250 feet deep. Try green and blue spoons or meat rigs. Those trolling along the shoreline caught brown trout.
Pentwater: Angler pressure was down and pier fishing was slow but a few brown trout were still caught in the channel by those using spawn bags. Boat anglers did well for brown trout when trolling south along the shoreline and the rocks with stick baits. Salmon were caught in 150 feet of water. Walleye fishing from the pier was hit-or-miss but a few were caught on body baits in the early morning.
SOUTHEAST LOWER PENINSULA
Lake Erie: Most anglers were targeting walleye in 14 to 17 feet of water around Brest Bay. Those trolling or drifting purple or gold crawler harnesses did best. Some launching at Bolles Harbor found few fish in 16 to 20 feet of water near the Dumping Grounds when drifting or jigging with minnows. A few boats had limit catches but they put in a lot of time to get that many fish. Perch were caught in 18 to 20 feet of water out past the Dumping Grounds and right along the Michigan-Ohio border.
Huron River: Is producing white bass, smallmouth bass and occasional steelhead.
Detroit River: Walleye are being caught in the Trenton Channel but with all the white bass, the better fishing was down between Grosse Ile and Celeron Island or around Sugar Island. The river is full of white bass. Try a jig and minnow.
Lexington: Salmon and trout fishing were good. Boat anglers caught a nice mix of chinook, coho, lake trout, steelhead and brown trout when trolling spoons or body baits in 30 to 60 feet of water.
Port Sanilac: Had very good trout and salmon action in waters up to 60 feet deep.
Harbor Beach: Trolling for trout and salmon was good about a mile out. Try 20 to 40 feet of water and head out deeper as the sun comes up. Most are trolling spoons, dipseys and downriggers in the top 25 to 35 feet of water. Use bright colors. For lake trout, fish straight out or north of the harbor in 60 to 100 feet of water using dodgers with spin-glows or flies near the bottom. Steelhead action was fair in the top 20 feet of water north of the harbor with color lines. Walleye fishing was slow. Try north or south of the harbor in 20 to 40 feet of water with spoons, Hot-n-Tots, or crawler harnesses.
Grindstone City: Shore anglers were catching and releasing smallmouth bass.
Port Austin: The harbor remains closed for renovation but pier anglers were getting some walleye at night off the north wall. Coho, lake trout and the occasional Atlantic salmon were also caught.
Saginaw Bay: Had good walleye action for those using crawler harnesses in 15 to 18 feet of water off Linwood and around Spoils Island and the Callahan Reef. Fishing was slow at the Hot Pond Channel. Boat launching from Quanicassee are heading west to the Callahan Reef or north to the Slot where walleye were caught on crawler harnesses. Cold nights have lowered water temperatures and slowed the panfish activity in the marinas. Bass anglers were doing well for smallmouth around North Island but the walleye action was slow that far north. Caseville had rumors of walleye being caught off the pier at night.
Saginaw River: Is muddy after the recent rains. Anglers are targeting catfish.
Tittabawassee River: The spring walleye fishery is just about done due to the fact that the fish were spawning two weeks earlier than normal this year.
Sebewaing River: Is producing a few walleye, pike and bass.
SOUTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA
Saugatuck: Salmon fishing continues with good action in 80 to 150 feet of water.
Anglers are taking a mix of chinook and coho.
South Haven: Is producing fish in waters between 60 and 200 feet deep. Most of the fish caught were chinook and coho. No pier anglers.
Holland: Pier anglers are catching chinook in the early morning when casting spoons. Boat anglers caught chinook and coho near the piers and out to waters 120 feet deep. Shore fishing for white perch was slow. Try minnows or worms on the bottom.
Grand Haven: Salmon were caught in 150 to 250 feet of water with regular size spoons and flies. Hot colors were green and blue. White paddles also worked. With large schools of alewife around the piers fishing was very good but the salmon have moved out. Perch fishing was slow.
Grand River at Grand Rapids: Is producing catfish, some pike and a few walleye. Try live bait or crawlers for catfish. For walleye try jigs with crawlers. Panfish slowed with the cooler weather.
Grand River at Lansing: Those fishing Moore's Park and the North Lansing Dam are catching catfish. Smallmouth bass and carp were caught near Eaton Rapids.
Muskegon: Salmon were caught in 150 to 250 feet of water by those trolling spoons and flies. No perch to report.
Whitehall: Boat anglers caught salmon in 150 to 200 feet of water however some anglers could not find fish that deep so they moved to shallow waters about 20 feet deep and caught fish there. For pier anglers, walleye fishing was very slow but the occasional steelhead was still being caught when casting a blue and silver cleo.