Northern Lower Peninsula Fishing Report – March 11th, 2016
Ice was running up to 12 inches thick on Burt and Crooked lakes last week and fishing has been good. Perch and walleyes have been caught in 8 to 15 feet of water on Burt Lake outside Maple Bay and in the north arm of the lake. Pike fishing has been good on Crooked Lake off Little Mini Creek. There was 6 inches of snow on the ground. Coyote hunting has been pretty good in Emmet and Cheboygan counties, but hunting pressure has been light.
Young’s Bait and Party Shop, (231) 548-5286.
Traverse City Area
There is open water on Torch Lake, and anglers trolling Rapalas along the breaklines report catching good numbers of Atlantic salmon. Steelhead fishing has been pretty good in the Big Manistee and Betsie rivers. Spawn, spinners, wax worms, wigglers, crankbaits, and flies have all produced good results. Ice was holding up pretty well on lakes in Grand Traverse County, with between 6 and 10 inches on most lakes. However, warm weather was in the forecast and ice is expected to start falling apart. Smelt fishing has been good in 45 feet of water on Cedar Lake. There was still about 2 feet of snow on the ground. Hunting pressure has been very light.
WildFishing Guide Service, www.wildfishing.com.
Lake City Area
Ice was running up to 14 inches thick on lakes in Missaukee County last week. A good crappies bite was reported by anglers on Lake Missaukee, and some bluegills and pike were being caught, too. There was about 3 inches of snow on the ground. Rabbit hunting has been very good, and there are a lot of coyotes in the area for those who choose to pursue them.
Miller’s Corner, (231) 839-0440
Anglers were fishing on lakes Cadillac and Mitchell last week, but with increasing temperatures and rain in the forecast, the ice-fishing season wasn’t expected to last much longer. The crappie bite has been good on the west shore of Lake Mitchell. Pike and panfish have been caught on both lakes. Predator hunting has been decent, but hunting pressure has been light in recent days.
Pilgrim Village Fishing Shop, (231) 775-5412.
There was up to 12 inches of ice on lakes in Osceola County last week, but with forecasts calling for temperatures to rise into the 50s and 60s, it wasn’t expected to hold up much longer. Pike fishing has been very good on Rose Lake and Hicks Lake. Good numbers of panfish have been caught, too. There was about 4 inches of snow on the ground. Rabbit hunting has been good, but hunting pressure has been light. There are a lot of coyotes in Osceola County.
The Eyes Have It, (231) 768-5653.
There was up to 20 inches of solid ice on lakes in Crawford County last week. Good numbers of bluegills, walleyes, and pike have been caught on Lake Margrethe. There was still a couple feet of snow in the woods and just a few inches of powder on the ice. Warm weather is in the forecast. Coyote- and rabbit-hunting pressure has been light.
Skip’s Sport Shop, (989) 348-7111.
Houghton Lake Area
Anglers were still getting out on Houghton Lake last week, but with warm weather and rain in the forecast, the ice-fishing season wasn’t expected to last much longer. Watch the shore ice and be careful around the large pressure crack. The afternoon bite has been good for walleyes and perch. Anglers did well with pink or firetiger jigging Rapalas and Do-jiggers tipped with minnow heads. Bluegills were hitting wax worms. Some nice crappies have been caught, too, and good reports are still coming in from pike anglers. Coyote hunting has been good in Roscommon County, but hunting pressure has been light.
Lyman’s on the Lake, (989) 422-3231.
Higgins Lake Area
Perch and trout fishing have been pretty good on Higgins Lake, and the smelt bite should heat up any time now. There was between 7 and 12 inches of ice, but anglers were cautioned to beware of springs and creeks. The lake is not frozen evenly. Temperatures were expected to reach the 50s this week, so anglers are urged call ahead for updated conditions. There was still a foot of snow in the woods. Hunting pressure has been light.
Higgins Lake Sport & Tackle, (989) 821-9517.
Hubbard Lake Area
There was up to a foot of ice on Hubbard Lake last week, but fishing has been spotty. The best bites have been at the south end of the lake and in East Bay. Perch fishing has been the best in 12 to 15 feet of water, and walleyes were hitting in 30 to 40 feet of water. There was about 6 inches of snow on the ice and up to 10 inches in the woods. Rabbit- and coyote-hunting pressure has been light.
Side Door Bait and Tackle, (989) 736-6418.
Ice was running up to up to 15 inches thick last week on lakes in Alpena and Presque Isle counties. Anglers reported a good perch and walleye bite on Long and Grand lakes. There was still two feet of snow on the ground. Hunting pressure has been very light.
Clem’s Live Bait & Tackle, (989) 354-2070.