Little Traverse Bay serves up some lunker smallmouth bass

Smallmouth bass were in shallow and biting last week on Lake Michigan’s Little Traverse Bay. And the action is getting better and better by the day. Males were just starting to move up into the shallows and finning beds in the sand. With a full moon on tap July 2, and the spawning activity increasing as the water continues to warm, smallmouth bass fishing on both Little Traverse and Grand Traverse bays should be on fire for the next couple of weeks.

Yamaha fishing pros Robert Blosser and Joe Okada took a few of us out on Little Traverse late last week to sample the fishery. 

Joe said he likes to fish Lake Michigan because of its vastness. “It feels like you are fishing a new lake everywhere you go.” he said.

The sand, gravel and boulders along the north shore of the bay at Harbor Springs didn’t disappoint us. Several smallies in the 3- to 4-pound range and a healthy 18-inch lake trout fell to our soft-plastic presentations.

A good pair of polarized sunglasses are paramount to success as sight-fishing is the name of the game at this time of year.

The water in Little Traverse Bay is crystal clear. When fishing in shallow water, the fish can see you and your boat from a good distance. The key was to remain relatively quiet, visually locate the beds and boulders in the shallows where the  fish were holding and long-cast up to them. 

“There are a lot of rocks in here. Look for sandy holes between the rocks. These smallmouth are lying around in those pockets of sand waiting for gobies to come out of the rocks,” Robert explained.

Our plan of attack was to cast a rubber tube or worm into the sandy holes .

“Don’t drag it across the sand. Let it sit there and jiggle it a little,” he explained.

If you’re planning a trip for the 4th of July or just need to get away and soothe your soul on the water, give Little Traverse Bay or Grand Traverse Bays some consideration. The smallmouth populations there are thriving and the time is right for some of the last bass spawning activity of the year. 

Categories: Bass, Blog Content, MicBlogs, Michigan – Bill Parker

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