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Gone fishin’

June 1, 2012
The Mining Journal

EDITOR'S NOTE: The weekly fishing report is prepared by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

Strong winds on Lake Superior slows fishing action the past week, but there were still some reports of lake trout and salmon being taken.

Elsewhere, the bass opener was very good even with the threat of storms that passed through the state. However, the return of cooler weather this week should slow catch rates once again.

Upper Peninsula

Marquette: Strong winds kept many off the big lake but those venturing out caught salmon and a few limits of lake trout. Try the Sand Hole, the White Rocks, north of Granite Island or about five miles east toward Shot Point. Look for schools of baitfish in waters 140 to 200 feet deep and fish off the bottom. Surface water temperatures were in the low 40's.

Keweenaw Bay: Is producing chinook, coho and some lake trout. Try 40 to 60 feet down in waters 50 to 70 feet deep. Lake trout were caught off Pequaming in 220 to 260 feet of water. Along the South Portage Entry, salmon and lake trout were caught near the lighthouse in 30 to 80 feet of water. Lake trout were also caught near the Mud Bank, Farmers Reef and Newton's Reef.

AuTrain: Those able to get out were targeting lake trout. Try just past AuTrain Island in 120 to 180 feet of water but the fish are usually smaller here. Another good area is near Wood Island where there are a series of deep humps that average 150 to 200 feet deep. Be sure to fish right on the bottom. Fish averaging 5 to 10 pounds can be caught here. Surface water temperatures remain in the mid 40's in the bay and the low 40's around the islands.

Munising: Some boat anglers are targeting a mix of fish including chinook, lake trout, smallmouth bass and perch. Others are fishing for lake trout near Grand Portal Point and Trout Reef. The fish are running smaller at 2 and 3 pounds. Pier fishing was very slow.

Grand Marais: Had fair to good success for whitefish off the pier. Some limit catches were reported with smaller fish tending to bite before sunrise and the bigger fish after sunrise. Boat anglers are now shifting their attention to lake trout when trolling in 100 to 300 feet of water which is five to seven miles north of the bay. Shore anglers caught pike when casting or still-fishing with minnows. A few perch were caught around the marina and boat launch.

Menominee: Boat anglers targeting musky had slow results. A few fish were caught near Boom Landing but most came back empty handed. Those trolling for walleye had fair results near the mouth of the Cedar River when trolling in 8 to 12 feet of water with rapalas or crawler harnesses. Boat anglers trolling in 50 feet of water near Chambers Island were picking up some brown trout on spoons with or without flies.

Menominee River: Water levels near the dam were low which made casting and trolling difficult. Shore anglers near the Mystery Ship caught smallmouth bass, pike, rock bass, freshwater drum and the occasional walleye.

Cedar River: Anglers were fishing from the mouth up to the first rapids for bass. Catch rates were slow for those using crawlers but tube jigs caught smallmouth bass.

Little Bay De Noc: Had fair to good walleye catches for those trolling or drifting crank baits or crawlers along the reefs in Kipling to the north of the bay in 12 to 24 feet of water. Fish were caught in Gladstone when trolling crawlers in 25 to 35 feet of water but the better catches were south from Portage Point to the Ford River when trolling or drifting crawler harnesses along the shelf in 8 to 14 feet of water. Good pike action along the north end of Saunders Point in 10 to 12 feet of water and near the Day's River in 8 to 14 feet of water. Perch was fair north of Butler Island in 20 to 23 feet of water. Smallmouth bass were caught near Garth Point when casting crank baits or plastics in 4 to 8 feet of water and Hunters Point in 3 to 8 feet of water or the mouth of the Ford River.

Big Bay De Noc: Had good walleye fishing from late evening into the night. Most were launching from Nahma and heading north to Porcupine Point and out to the "Boot" while trolling crawler harnesses in 8 to 16 feet of water. The bass opener was good at South River, Kates Bay, Porcupine Point, and Ogontz Bay in 3 to 12 feet of water. Some fish were still on the beds while others may have already spawned. Try casting crank baits or plastics. Northern pike were caught on crank baits in 10 to 12 feet of water between Kates Bay and Ansell's Point.

St. Marys River: Those fishing in Raber Bay caught a few walleye on the north side of Lime Island and just off Round Island. They were slow drifting with crawlers in 8 feet of water near the weeds.

DeTour: Anglers are catching Atlantic salmon when trolling spoons and flies in over 80 feet of water between the red buoy and the lighthouse. Most fish are caught 8 to 10 feet down. A few chinook were caught. Lake trout can be found in schools below the Atlantic salmon so fish 35 to 45 feet down.

Cedarville and Hessel: Still have very good pike fishing. Try off the Hessel pier with chubs or minnows in the early morning or when casting or trolling in Cedarville Bay, Moscoe Channel and Musky Bay. The occasional perch was also caught.

Carp River: Fishing in slow. Anglers should target trout upstream for better results.

Northeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Cheboygan: Is producing lake trout and Atlantic salmon for those trolling purple and pink spoons. Those fishing Hammond Bay caught Atlantic salmon and northern pike. Try silver, fire-tiger, purple or pink stick baits. Only suckers were caught in the river.

Rogers City: Was producing very good catches of lake trout with the occasional limit. The key is to find the fish. Good spots to fish include west of the harbor towards 40 Mile Point and past it, up to the "Humps" off Evergreen Drive, Seagull Point, the pavilion off the State Park, Adams Point, and the Dyno Shack. Try just off the bottom in 30 to 65 feet of water with dodgers or cowbells with spin-glows. Chinook were caught out in deeper water. Good colors were orange and silver, blue and silver, or green. The marina is open and the fish cleaning station is open.

Presque Isle: Has been very good for Atlantic salmon and lake trout. A few chinook were also taken. Lake trout were caught near the bottom with dodgers or cowbells and spin-glows in 30 to 80 feet of water. Atlantic salmon were caught in the top 25 to 45 feet in 50 to 70 feet of water. The marina is open.

Rockport: Atlantic salmon were caught off the old pier and by shore anglers using minnows or spoons. Those trolling caught lake trout with orange or glow spoons. Fish were caught in 50 feet of water out near the Nordmere Wreck and Stoneport.

Alpena: Boats heading out to Thunder Bay caught walleye when trolling crawler harnesses or crank baits. Fish were also caught near Grass Island.

Thunder Bay River: Walleye were caught by those still-fishing with leeches in the marina and Mill Island. Several rock bass were caught between the 9th Street Dam and the marina and off the pier when using crawlers, minnows, or artificial baits. Smallmouth bass were caught on crawlers, leeches and rapalas.

Harrisville: Warmer weather did move the fish out to deeper water. Lake trout were caught out in 60 to 80 feet however they were suspended. Good colors were black and silver or black and orange. Steelhead and Atlantic salmon were also caught higher in the water column. Walleye were caught in 20 to 40 feet of water around and north of the harbor when using crawler harnesses or stick baits.

Oscoda: Walleye may have moved out to deeper water. Try small spoons or stick baits. Brown trout were caught off the pier by those using minnows. Lake trout, salmon, steelhead, and Atlantics have been caught in 50 to 70 feet of water on planner boards and dipsys, spoons, stick baits and spin-glows.

Higgins Lake: Boats are still trolling for lake trout when the winds allow. Those jigging did find some whitefish. A few perch were caught on minnows and wigglers along the drop-off. This is a good time of year for kids to start catching rock bass.

Houghton Lake: Anglers are catching a few walleye and bluegills. There is a fly hatch in progress so crawlers and leeches were the ticket.

Tawas: Boats trolling crawler harnesses caught walleye in 20 to 40 feet of water near Buoy #2 and around the Point. Another group trolling in 50 to 60 feet of water caught a mix of coho, steelhead, lake trout and brown trout on spoons and body baits. Pier anglers caught smallmouth bass, rock bass, pike and small perch.

Tawas River: Is producing channel catfish, smallmouth bass and pike.

Au Gres: Boat anglers heading out two to eight miles due south of Point Lookout were catching walleye in 35 feet of water but many were sub-legal.

Au Gres River: Shore anglers caught catfish and pike. Small boats trolling crank baits caught pike and walleye.

Northwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Harbor Springs: Was producing good smallmouth bass action near the State Park.

Bear River: Steelhead fishing has pretty much ended. Anglers fishing the mouth caught carp, suckers, rock bass, smallmouth bass and freshwater drum.

Petoskey: Was producing lake trout in 110 feet of water near Bay Harbor.

Charlevoix: Salmon were caught 50 to 80 feet down in waters 130 to 150 feet deep when trolling spoons or body baits. Lake trout were caught in 40 feet of water between the channel and Fisherman's Island. Walleye fishing was slow but pier anglers were still night fishing in the channel with both natural and artificial baits.

Elk River: Had lots of anglers targeting smallmouth bass as good numbers of fish were between the dam and the mouth. Try leeches, crawlers or soft plastic baits.

Traverse City: Lake trout are being caught in both bays by those trolling in 20 to 60 feet of water or when jigging in 100 feet of water. Those jigging were also picking up a few whitefish. Smallmouth bass were in the shallows.

Boardman River: Anglers are targeting smallmouth bass. Live bait worked best. Carp, perch, rock bass and the occasional pike were also caught.

Leland: Anglers looking to fish will want to contact the City Marina first as the boat launch was removed for repairs.

Frankfort: Weather permitting, some nice chinook salmon were caught 60 to 90 feet down in 150 to 200 feet of water. They hit on spoons, plugs and meat rigs. A couple brown trout were caught off the north pier by those casting Cleo's. Alewife can be found in and around the piers.

Onekama: Had good fishing despite the weather.

Portage Lake: Bluegills were caught off the east shore and smallmouth bass along the southwest shoreline. For largemouth, try casting along the drop-offs and areas with structure. Perch were caught in 14 to 18 feet of water near the buoy and the occasional keeper pike was taken off Little Eden.

Lake Cadillac: Is producing walleye for those trolling crawler harnesses and bottom bouncers. At night, fish the shallows with minnows. Bluegills were still on the beds. Crappie action was fair to good with minnows. Pike are hitting spinners or suckers.

Lake Mitchell: Is producing bluegill for boat and shore anglers. Crappie, pike, bass and the occasional walleye were also caught.

Manistee: Boats anglers did well for trout and salmon in waters 120 to 240 feet deep. Try 50 to 130 feet down with green or blue spoons. Pier anglers caught a few brown trout when casting spoons.

Ludington: Salmon were caught in the top 60 feet of waters 120 to 350 feet deep. Steelhead and smaller salmon were caught 60 to 120 feet down with green and blue spoons or meat rigs.

Pentwater: Had no pier anglers as the channel was muddy. Boat anglers caught steelhead 15 feet down in 240 feet of water but a few fish were also caught in shallow waters. Salmon were taken 70 feet down in 120 feet of water. Orange and bright green were good colors.

Southeast Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

Lake Erie: A good number of boats are heading out to Ohio waters and catching walleye. Those fishing in Michigan waters caught a decent number of walleye considering the fish are scattered and all the other species being caught. Most of the activity has been in 25 feet of water out from Stony Point which is near the Ohio line. Boats launching from Bolles Harbor were heading straight out and fishing in 22 feet of water. Smallmouth bass were caught off the rock wall in Brest Bay. Some perch were caught between the E-Buoy and McDonalds in 18 feet of water. Hot colors were purple, copper and bright green.

Huron River: Is producing smallmouth bass, white bass, carp and the occasional walleye. Look for bluegill, rock bass and crappie as well.

Detroit River: Early morning or late evening are best for those trolling for walleye. Some are using crawler harnesses while others are using stick baits. Good colors were bright orange and green. White bass are still being caught.

Lake St. Clair: Has good catch and release smallmouth bass fishing. Walleye are being caught but catch rates were sporadic. Shore anglers are still catching lots of white bass at Metro Beach and Harley Ensign.

St. Clair River: Shore anglers are catching lots of white bass. The mouth of the Black River was the hot spot for those using minnows and small jigs with a white twister tail. Limit catches were taken especially in the evening. Walleye were slow during the day but fish were caught at night. Those trolling caught fish as crawler harnesses are starting to produce as the river warms up. Freshwater drum and smallmouth bass were caught from the breakwalls. For perch, look for large schools of minnows.

Lexington: Those trolling in 40 to 110 feet of water caught a mix of chinook, coho, pink salmon, steelhead, lake trout and brown trout. A good number of pink salmon are being caught right now. The fish run 12 to 14 inches and often do not trip the downrigger release. A scum line has developed east of the Thumb where those running high lines caught steelhead and coho. Lake trout are near the bottom. Pier anglers are catching some rather large rock bass, white bass and smallmouth bass.

Harbor Beach: Is producing coho straight out and north in 50 to 100 feet of water. Move deeper as the sun comes up and try spoons off 10 color lead lines. Spoons and body baits off dipsys and downriggers are still working 50 feet down. Good colors were green and white, black and orange or silver. Steelhead are in the top 20 to 50 feet. Try long lines on boards with bright colored spoons. Lake trout is fair to good straight out, north or south of the harbor in 60 to 100 feet of water with dodgers and spin-glows near the bottom. Walleye were caught at night off the breakwall. Bass and pike fishing was good along the weed beds inside the harbor with small spoons or body baits.

Port Austin: Had good walleye fishing at night off the breakwall.

Saginaw Bay: Good catches of walleye were reported at the Pinconning Bar, 17 feet of water off Linwood, 6 to 12 feet of water off Parish Road, off the Bay City State Park, Spoils Island, and the Callahan Reef. Anglers will need to sort out the small ones. Boats out of Quanicassee and Sebewaing took a few limit catches from the Slot. Try west of the Sun Set Bay Marina and out to the islands. Those trolling caught channel cats, freshwater drum, white bass and a few bigger perch. Crappie fishing in the marinas is just about done however there is still a good number of carp and gar for those bow fishing. The bass opener at Bay Port was very good.

Tittabawassee River: Bass anglers are enjoying some great fishing. They are using the Center Road launch because Gordonville Road is hard to get to with all the road construction. White bass are still there but the run is tapering off.

Saginaw River: Bass fishing was generally good. On the lower river, lots of catfish have been caught especially at Essexville.

Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report

St. Joseph: Boats are still heading out for trout and salmon. Try to get out early before the winds kick up. The fish may be scattered.

St. Joseph River: Is producing walleye. The river also provides good fishing for large and smallmouth bass, catfish, bluegill and rock bass.

Grand Haven: Salmon fishing slowed. Try 40 to 80 feet down in 80 to 180 feet of water with copper lines and dipsy divers 100 to 200 feet back. Most are using green, blue, orange and chrome spoons in regular or super slim. Those trolling around the piers caught the occasional salmon. Pier anglers are struggling to get salmon or perch. Some are using alewife while others are starting to use shrimp.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Is producing catfish and carp. Look for walleye off the bridges. Check out the backwaters for bluegill and crappie.

Grand River at Lansing: Catfish are active near the dams. Carp are everywhere and hitting on corn, bread or crawlers. Some pike were caught on crank baits or large minnows below the North Lansing Dam.

Lake Lansing: Is producing bass, pike and bluegills.

Lake Ovid: Anglers caught bluegill and largemouth bass. A few crappie were also taken on minnows.

Morrison Lake: Is producing crappie and bluegills on minnows and wax worms.

Sessions Lake: Is producing bluegill and crappie on spec minnows.

Muskegon: Boat anglers are catching trout and salmon 40 to 60 feet down in 80 to 180 feet of water. Like Grand Haven, they are using copper line and dipsy divers 140 to 170 feet back. Good colors were green, orange, blue and chrome. No pier fishing and no perch to report.

Whitehall: Suckers have moved into the channel. Pier anglers caught steelhead and brown trout when casting spinners and body baits. Salmon were caught about 90 feet down in waters 150 to 170 feet deep. Some were taken on lead core about 45 feet down. Orange and yellow were the hot colors.

 
 

 

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