Thursday, May 26, 2011

Thursday, May 26, 2011 Michigan Fishing Report

Kyle Proxmire with a nice Bass

This coming Saturday, May 28th is the opening day of bass season on the Great Lakes and all inland waters except for Lake St. Clair, St. Clair River and the Detroit River which do not open until the 3rd Saturday in June. The early catch and release season has been very good so the opener should be strong as well.
Lake Erie: >< The limit for walleye in Michigan waters is now six (6) fish. Walleye fishing has picked up but overall is still slow. Those drifting bottom bouncers with fire-tiger crawler harnesses caught fish in Brest Bay in 18 feet of water or try near the Banana Dike in 14 to 18 feet of water. White bass and white perch are spawning.
Huron River: Water levels are high and muddy but anglers should be able to catch both smallmouth and white bass. Try crawlers for catfish.
Detroit River: Walleye anglers are hand-lining or jigging with minnows. White bass and catfish action has been good.
Lake St. Clair: Bass are still being caught however the season here does not open until the 3rd Saturday in June. All large and smallmouth bass must be released immediately.
Lexington: Salmon and trout fishing was slow but fish were caught in shallow waters 25 to 35 feet deep. Those trolling caught a mix of chinook, coho, steelhead and lake trout on spoons or body baits. Pier anglers caught smallmouth bass.
Port Sanilac: Boat anglers trolling in shallow waters caught trout and salmon. The fish are scattered so catch rates were slow. Pier anglers caught bass.
Harbor Beach: Lake trout fishing is good straight out and north of the harbor. Try spoons off downriggers, flashers or dodgers with flies or spin-glo's in the bottom 40 feet. Good colors were purple, green, blue and black. Salmon were caught in all directions when trolling spoons 40 to 80 feet down. Silver, green, blue or black were hot colors. Brown trout were caught close to shore in 25 to 45 feet of water south of the harbor. Steelhead fishing was slow but should pick up. For walleye, try 30 to 40 feet of water to the north. For perch, try near the cemetery when using minnows in 20 to 30 feet of water.
Port Austin: Boat anglers have caught decent numbers of lake trout and some steelhead in 80 to 120 feet of water. Chinook were caught about halfway down while lake trout were right on the bottom and hitting on mirage flies or spin-glo's.
Saginaw Bay: Walleye anglers trolling crawler harnesses in 8 to 14 feet of water near the Pinconning Bar had fair success. Fish were also caught north of the Black Hole or 20 feet of water near the Spark Plug. Try red and gold spinners on the crawler harnesses. On the east side of the bay, walleye were caught east of Spoils Island and the mouth of the Hot Ponds. The Callahan Reef was not producing many fish but the southern end of the Slot was. Those trolling out of Quanicassee did fair in 15 to 17 feet of water west of the Sunset Bay Marina. Catfish were caught straight out of the channel at Sebewaing. From Bay Port, walleye and bass were caught between North Island and Sand Point. Carp are moving into the rivers, cuts and marina basins. Bow anglers are reminded to dispose of your catch in a responsible way. Do not leave your fish were they were shot.
Tittabawassee River: Looks like walleye fishing is about done for this spring. Most of the catch over the last week has been smallmouth bass.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

St. Joe: Boats are heading out when they can but the fish are scattered. No word on perch.
South Haven: A few salmon and trout were caught in 30 to 200 feet of water north or south of the river. Boats were looking for perch but none were caught.
Grand Haven: Boat anglers targeting salmon are really struggling as the fish are scattered. Most are fishing in waters 80 to 250 feet deep and running downriggers anywhere between the surface and 100 feet down with spoons. Orange has been used on the surface while blue and green were used in deep water. Pier anglers have caught alewife but nothing else. No perch to report.
Grand River at Grand Rapids: Water levels are high but fishing should be good for catfish and the bass opener. Look in the shallow backwaters for bluegill and crappie.
Grand River at Lansing: Moore's Park and the North Lansing Dam have been good for channel cats. High water levels are making it harder to put the bait where you want it. Try crawlers or minnows with lots of weight. Closer to Eaton Rapids, carp were hitting on bread around the island. Look for bluegills in the shallows.
Maple River: Water levels are still high but catfish are still being caught.
Lake Lansing: Bluegill may be on the beds by the weekend. If not, fish a little deeper for bigger fish.
Morrison Lake: Was producing some crappie for those using fathead minnows or wax worms.
Muskegon: Pier anglers are still jigging for walleye. Boat anglers here are also struggling when it comes to salmon as the fish are scattered. No perch to report
Whitehall: Pier anglers have caught a few walleye after dusk when using large soft plastic shad. Not many salmon coming off Lake Michigan. Those trolling are targeting brown trout and lake trout.


Northeast Lower Peninsula

Rogers City: The weather has not been favorable and the surface water is still cold for this time of year. The few fish caught were full of smelt and gobies. The marina is now open for the season. All the docks are in and the fish cleaning station is open. A few lake trout, chinook and Atlantic salmon were caught however most of the lake trout had to be released because of the new size limit. Try shallow waters less than 50 feet deep while trolling cowbells with spin-glo's right near the bottom or spoons a bit higher. Good colors were green, orange and silver or blue and silver. Body baits that look like smelt or gobies should also work. There are lots of minnows in the marina and a large fly hatch taking place at this time.
Presque Isle: Lake trout were starting to hit but it was still too cold. A few fish were caught in 30 feet of water right off Big Lighthouse Point when using dodgers or cowbells with spin-glo's. The marina is open and the docks are in.
Rockport: Is producing Atlantic salmon near the old shipping dock. Try large grey minnows or lures. There are large schools of minnows so the bite is slow. Lake trout were caught in 12 feet of water when trolling along the shoreline. Chinook were found in 20 feet of water.
Alpena: Walleye have been caught in front of the Yacht Club and in the waters around Grass Island. Try 12 feet of water and fish close to the bottom.
Thunder Bay River: Steelhead were caught near the Ninth Street Dam on a single rubber egg or spinners. White, black and silver were the hot colors. Walleye were caught on crawlers behind the Boys and Girls Club. Catfish and bass were caught.
Harrisville: Walleye were caught in 20 to 50 feet of water. Try crawler harnesses, body baits or small spoons off planer boards or long lines. Lake trout are moving out to deeper water and were caught north of the harbor in 80 to 100 feet. A few salmon were also caught in the same area.
Higgins Lake: When boats can get out, they will be trolling for lake trout and whitefish in waters 80 to 100 feet deep. Rock bass should be hitting or look for perch around the Sunken Island.
Houghton Lake: Walleye are being caught by those drifting leeches. A few crappie hit on minnows along the east side in Muddy Bay. A couple perch were caught.
Oscoda: Walleye catches were hit-or-miss. A few lucky anglers did manage to catch a couple fish on the pier or when trolling crawler harnesses.
Au Sable River: Those fishing at the Dam and High Banks were still taking some fresh steelhead on flies or a single egg.
Tawas: Pier anglers were catching a lot of small perch, some panfish, pike and smallmouth bass. Those trolling crawler harnesses caught walleye around Tawas Point in 20 to 30 feet of water while others were down between Alabaster and Whitestone Point. Shore anglers and those wading caught walleye off the mouth.
Au Gres: The water was really muddy off the mouth of the river so boat anglers were heading north up to Point Lookout, Whitestone Point or Alabaster. Some caught walleye on crawler harnesses or crank baits.
Au Gres River: Fishing was slow except for a few catfish.


Northwest Lower Peninsula

Petoskey: Smallmouth bass and carp are starting to show up around the pier and marina docks.
Bear River: Steelhead can still be found though the run is nearing the end. Try spawn, yarn, eggs, and flies to get the remaining fish to bite. As the water levels start to drop and clarity increases, use lighter gear to increase your chances.
Charlevoix: Fishing pressure was light with only a few lake trout caught. Walleye and smallmouth bass are starting to show up in the Pine River Channel. Try jigging leeches or crawlers along the bottom in the evening.
Traverse City: The East Bay is producing a good number of Cisco along the peninsula and north of the Center Road launch in 80 feet of water. Those trolling and jigging north of Yuba are doing well on lake trout and a few whitefish were caught by those jigging in 160 feet of water. In the West Bay, those jigging found lake trout and whitefish south of the island in 140 feet of water. Boats trolling along the shallows of the south bank caught lake trout in the early morning.
Boardman River: A good number of perch were reported up at the Union Street Dam. Those casting crawlers and leeches landed a few walleye. The bass opener should be good as fish have been caught at the mouth and the dam.
Frankfort: Chinook salmon have arrived and are hitting on body baits. Several brown trout have been caught between as well as outside the piers when trolling body baits. A few caught fish in 60 to 80 feet of water.
Portage Lake: Bluegills were starting to move into the shallows however the bigger fish were still out deeper. Some nice smallmouth bass were caught along the edge of the drop-offs. Walleye were caught in the evening along the channel and west side.
Manistee: With the fish scattered, trout and salmon fishing were slow. Those lucky enough to find fish did so when trolling from the piers out to water 300 feet deep with orange, blue or green spoons.
Ludington: Boat anglers have caught trout and salmon between the piers and 100 feet of water with orange or green spoons. Pier fishing was slow.
Pere Marquette River: Fresh steelhead were up on the gravel and could be seen from the fly's only section down to Rainbow Rapids. Brown trout fishing was good using wet flies or spinners. The mayflies have started to hatch, so now would be a good time to hit the river.


Upper Peninsula

Eagle Bay: Shore anglers have caught a few splake, coho and whitefish. Try smelt, crawlers, minnows, or cut bait just off the bottom.
Copper Harbor: Fishing was slow but water levels were up with a good current so don't rule out splake. Try drifting cut bait or minnows.
Keweenaw Bay: Anglers have started to pick up a few lake trout jigging in 245 feet of water near Farmers Reef while those trolling in 140 to 180 feet of water near the Mud Banks caught fish.
Gratiot Lake: Had fair walleye fishing for those trolling or casting crank baits in 8 to 10 feet of water near the rocks. Pike action was fair when still-fishing dead smelt or large sucker minnows in 10 to 12 feet of water.
Marquette: Those fishing towards Shot Point and near the Sand River managed to catch a mix of lake trout, chinook and coho on stick baits, flies or spoons. Try jigging north of the White Rocks in 180 to 220 feet of water. Stannard Rock gave up lake trout in the 10 to 15 pound range. Surface water temperatures near the Carp and Chocolay Rivers was 51 to 54 degrees.
Menominee River: Walleye fishing was slow. Anglers were jigging minnows, trolling crawler harnesses or rapalas. Trout anglers drifting yarn near the rocks on the Michigan side near the first dam have caught the occasional steelhead. Bluegill, sunfish, perch and bullhead were caught behind K-Mart.
Little Bay De Noc: Had good walleye fishing from the Narrows north to Garth Point but the better fishing was in the flats near Kipling and south to the Vagabond area when trolling or drifting crawler harnesses in 26 to 30 feet of water. Those fishing at night reported limit catches. Large walleye were caught from the Terrace Bay Inn to the Black Bottom when trolling crawlers or stick baits in 14 to 25 feet of water. Large perch were caught near Kipling when jigging or drifting crawlers in 23 to 30 feet of water. Pre-season bass fishing was good near Garth Point and Gladstone.
Big Bay De Noc: Walleye were caught off Stony Point and Sand Point when trolling crawlers in 20 to 25 feet of water. Some nice perch were taken off the Fishery in Garden Bay when still-fishing crawlers in 6 to 8 feet of water. Smallmouth bass were hitting in Ogontz Bay, Martin Bay and South River Bay. Big Bay De Noc is probably one of the better smallmouth fisheries in the state.
Au Train: Had good lake trout action towards Wood Island, Laughing Whitefish Point, and east of Au Train Island. Depths vary with most fish being taken right off the bottom in 170 to 230 feet of water. Those jigging had fair success. Most of the lake trout are feeding on schools of sticklebacks. Early morning was the best time to fish. Chinook and coho were caught this week when trolling a combination of spoons and rapalas near Shelter Bay. Surface waters range from 46 to 52 degrees.
Munising: Boat anglers managed to catch a few chinook, coho and splake when trolling rapalas or thundersticks. Hot colors were chartreuse or fire-tiger. Pier and dock anglers caught splake using spawn bags or lures. Lake trout were in 50 to 170 feet of water around Grand Island and Pictured Rocks.
Grand Marais: Whitefish were caught on a single egg or wax worm in the early morning. Catch rates for menominee slowed. Those trolling along the banks caught some coho. Pier anglers caught coho and whitefish.
Manistique River: Walleye fishing was fair to good for those trolling upstream from the Municipal launch with crawler harnesses and rapalas. Pier anglers fishing after dark also caught walleye. Those floating yarn near the first dam caught a couple steelhead. Suckers are also up near the dam.
De Tour: Walleye were caught around Drummond Island in Scott Bay and between Paw Pointe and Peck Island in shallow waters 4 to 6 feet deep. Most are drifting crawler harnesses but planer boards and stick baits also caught fish. Smallmouth bass are spawning so the opener should be good. The State Rustic Campground is hoping to have the new boat launch open by the weekend. Albany Creek had some nice brook trout hitting on worms.
Carp River: Anglers are targeting steelhead between the campground bridge and McDonald Rapids.
St. Ignace: Boats heading out from the city launch have caught chinook and Atlantic salmon in 75 feet of water between the Coast Guard Station, the flats and the old fuel tanks.

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