Michigan Outdoor News Fishing Report – Aug. 4, 2017
Lake St. Clair
Walleye and perch fishing has been good on Lake St. Clair. Anglers trolling nightcrawler harnesses and bottom bouncers, or crankbaits from just south of the St. Clair light to the Grosse Pointe Yacht Club report very good action. Silver and gold, chartreuse, and pink have been the hot colors. Bass fishing has been good all along the American side of the lake. Golden shiners fished in 16 to 19 feet of water are producing a very good bite.
Lakeside Fishing Shops, (586) 777-7003.
Bass fishing remains pretty good on Lake Orion. Top-water baits are taking fish in the shallows early in the mornings. As the sun rises, anglers are switching to crankbaits and soft plastics and moving out to the weedbeds. Bluegills, sunfish and largemouth bass are hitting on East and West Graham lakes while anglers on Lakeville Lake report good bass, pike and panfish action. Brown trout are hitting spinners, crawlers and minnows on Paint Creek.
Lakes Village Stop/Mobile Gas Station, (248) 693-4565.
Luna Pier Area
Walleyes are still being caught on Lake Erie off the Fermi Nuclear Plant with pink artificial baits, but anglers were putting in a lot of work to get them. Those using a crawler harness did fair, however many of the ‘eyes were on the small side. Perch were being caught off Sterling State Park but no limit catches. Perch fishing was slightly better out of Bolles Harbor and near Buoys W and E. Water temperatures were about 80 degrees so try trolling in deeper water.
Luna Pier Harbour Club, (734) 848-8777.
Perch fishing remains very good on Lake Michigan off Deer Lick Creek in 28 to 40 feet of water. The key is to watch the water temperature. When it goes up the fish move out. Skamania steelhead are hitting at the Allegan Dam on the Kalamazoo River. Bluegills are still suspended on inland lakes and are still spawning on some lakes. A good bite has been reported by anglers on Duck and Muskrat lakes fishing 12 feet down in 20 to 30 feet of water. Crappies are hitting on Swan Lake but anglers are having to sort through them to find the keepers. A few walleyes have been caught in Lake Allegan on shallow-running crankbaits fished after dark.
Webber & Sons Marine and Tackle, (269) 673-6294.
Water temperatures on most of the inland lakes in the area are now exceeding 80 degrees, which makes fishing for bluegills and crappies a struggle. Portage Lake, Barton Lake and Long Lake were experiencing algae blooms last week with cloudy water conditions. Bass fishing reports indicate many good catches and several large lunkers. Pike are also being caught by many anglers including Justin Kling, who boated a 39-inch northern pike during the recent Battle Creek Steelheaders inland lake tournament.
D and R Sports, (269) 372-2277.
Grand Rapids Area
Walleye fishing has been pretty good on the Grand River below the Sixth Street dam. Nightcrawlers have been the preferred bait. Smallmouth bass and catfish are also being caught.
Al & Bob’s Sports, (616) 245-9156.
Saginaw Bay Area
Walleye action remains steady on Lake Huron’s Saginaw Bay. Limit catches are being reported daily by anglers using nightcrawler harnesses behind bottom bouncers or in-line weights, divers and spoons, or crank baits. The fish have been holding in 17 to 24 feet of water around the Cigar, Pencil Buoys, and out by No. 1 and No. 2. Perch fishing is starting to take off in 15 to 18 feet of water on the inside of the Black Hole and will only get better as summer wears on. Most anglers will catch a few perch while trolling for walleye, then go back and try to set up on them.
Franks Great Outdoors, (989) 697-5341.
Fishing has been pretty good on Sanford Lake. Those fishing crawlers and leeches near the dam are catching good numbers of walleyes and catfish. Bluegills have moved off the shoreline and are hitting leaf worms and wax worms fished along the weedbeds.
Sanford Sport Shop, (989) 687-5161.
Anglers are catching lots of smallmouth bass near the dams on the Grand River. Most are using nightcrawlers, leeches or minnows. Channel catfish have been caught up near the North Lansing Dam and the Portland Dam. Bass and small pike were being caught just off the Red Cedar River in Sycamore Creek.
Grand River Bait & Tackle, (517) 482-4461..
Grand Haven Area
Boat anglers are catching a mix of salmon and trout on Lake Michigan. Those fishing 30 to 80 feet down in 60 to 150 feet of water with a variety of meat rigs, flies, spoons and plugs report good action. Meat rigs in green or yellow have worked well along with green, blue, orange and yellow spoons. Pier anglers were still finding a couple steelhead with shrimp. Those casting spoons in the channel or off the end of the pier are catching freshwater drum.
Lakeview Marine & Tackle, (616) 842-2770.
Boat anglers on Lake Michigan have caught some good sized chinook salmon along with coho and steelhead. The Projects were producing the best bites about 50 to 70 feet down in 100 to 140 feet of water, or 50 to 90 feet down in 120 to 180 feet off Big Sable Point. A few chinook were caught in the harbor and in Pere Marquette Lake. Anglers did best with spoons and flies but a few were caught on meat rigs. Down at Pentwater, salmon and steelhead fishing was excellent near Little Sable Point when trolling 40 to 80 feet down in 100 to 180 feet of water with spoons, flies and meat rigs. Pier anglers care catching smallmouth bass on nightcrawlers fished near the bottom. On Pentwater Lake, perch anglers had success in 25 to 35 feet of water on dropper-rigs tipped with perch minnows or wax worms. Those fishing the channel are catching smallmouth bass on nightcrawlers fished near the bottom.
Captain Chuck’s Fishing, Hunting and Archery, (231) 843-4458.
Walleyes are hitting in Lake Huron. Those trolling nightcrawlers behind bottom bouncers at 1 mph are picking up enough fish for a meal. Hot’ N’ Tots are also producing a good bite when fished in 20 to 40 feet of water across the tip of the Thumb, from North Island all the way to Port Hope. Catfish and occasionally a walleye or bass will surprise angers fishing in the harbor. No word on perch yet, but they should be back in a month or so.
Walsh Gun & Tackle, (989) 856-4465.
Harbor Beach Area
Those targeting lake trout on Lake Huron at Grindstone City and Harbor Beach are going way out to find fish. Those fishing in 100 to 130 feet of water are catching about as many walleyes out there as lake trout. This would suggest that the winds have upset the thermocline as walleye often follow the warmer water out. Those fishing way out have also caught steelhead and Atlantic salmon up high. Those trolling north of Harbor Beach in 50 feet of water were taking 4 or 5 walleyes per boat but no limit catches have been reported.
Frank’s Place Bait & Tackle, (989) 864-5634.
Walleye fishing remains good on Lake Huron. Anglers drifting nightcrawler harnesses and wire-lining in 20 to 30 feet of water near the buoys report a good bite. Fair numbers of walleyes are hitting Twister Tails and nightcrawlers fished from shore and off the boardwalk on the St. Clair River. A few smallmouth bass have moved into the river, too. Largemouth bass are hitting on the local ponds and catfish action has been red hot from shore at Port Sanilac. Nightcrawlers are attracting a good amount of attention.
Anderson’s Pro Bait, (810) 984-3232.
Fishing has been very slow on Burt and Mullett lakes. Fluctuating weather patterns in recent weeks have the fish holding in deeper water than usual on most local inland lakes.
Pat & Gary’s Party Store, (231) 238-6776.
Traverse City Area
King salmon are moving into Lake Michigan’s West Grand Traverse Bay and anglers fishing in The Hole report catching a couple fish per trip. Dipsy Divers with squids and flashers are taking the majority of kings. Fish are averaging 12 to 15 pounds. Anglers trolling crankbaits on Big Platte Lake are catching fair numbers of walleyes and steelhead over deep water. Spider and Arbutus lakes are producing good numbers of largemouth bass. Smallmouth bass have moved out to 20 to 35 feet of water on Crystal Lake and are hitting soft plastics fished on a drop-shot rig.
WildFishing Guide Service, www.wildfishing.com.
Good numbers of king salmon with a nice mix of lake trout have been caught in Lake Michigan. Multiple fish over 20 pounds have been caught including one whopper chinook that was three ounces short of 30 pounds. Blue and green spoons fished in 120 to 160 feet of water in the top 50 feet have produced the best results. Bass and walleyes are keeping anglers busy on Platte and Lower Herring lakes.
Tackle Box, (231) 352-7673.
Skamania have moved up to Tipps Dam on the Manistee River and anglers are dialing in on a pretty good bite. A few kings are being picked up, too. Spawn, nightcrawlers, crayfish, spinners and flies are all getting hit. A few kings have been caught on the Little Manistee, too. The hex hatch has ended and terrestrials are now producing a good bite for brown trout anglers on the Manistee River between Hodenpyle Dam and Red Bridge, on the Pine River and the Little Manistee River. Bass are hitting surface lures and soft plastics on Bass Lake and the backwaters of Tippy Dam.
Pappy’s Bait & Tackle, (231) 848-4142.
A fair number of walleyes are being caught on lakes Cadillac and Mitchell. Anglers trolling nightcrawler harnesses and Rapala Shad Dancers in the deeper holes report the best action. Pike and bass fishing has been good on both lakes. Bluegills have moved out to deeper water. Successful panfish anglers are dunking leaf worms and small nightcrawlers in 8 to 15 feet of water.
Pilgrim Village Fishing Shop, (231) 775-5412.
Rogers City Area
Anglers trolling on Lake Michigan report a nice mixed bag of king salmon, lake trout, steelhead and walleyes. A couple of kings in the neighborhood of 26 pounds have been caught. Those trolling spoons, dodgers and squid, or dodgers and flies half way down in 60 to 120 feet of water report a good bite at Swan Bay and Adams Point. Inland, walleyes and perch are hitting on Grand Lake. The best action has come to those drifting nightcrawlers.
Adrian’s Sport Shop, (989) 734-2303
The walleye bite has been pretty good on West Twin Lake. The best action has been in the evenings on nightcrawlers, leeches and bodybaits trolled in 10 to 15 feet of water. Bass have moved into deeper water on Fletcher Floodwater. Good action has been reported by anglers fishing mornings and evenings with top-water baits, plastics and crankbaits. Bluegills have moved off their beds on most inland lakes in the area. Anglers report catching them along the first drop-offs and weedlines. Smallmouth bass fishing has been phenomenal in the Thunder Bay River. Those fishing crankbaits report a very good bite.
Elk Country Outfitters NEMI, (989) 306-0720, www.ElkCountryOutfittersNEMI.com.
The AuSable River was running about 70 degrees in waters between the dams and most trout anglers were heading for cooler waters where the fish wouldn’t get stressed out as much if caught. Those fishing the Holy Waters and the North Branch Au Sable were finding cooler water and good fishing. Terrestrials, hoppers and nymphs are all catching fish. Smaller creeks and brooks across the northeastern Lower Peninsula are producing well.
AuSable Angler, (989) 826-8500.
Houghton Lake Area
Fishing has been fair on Houghton Lake. The surface water temperature was up to 78 degrees and some of the fish were a bit lethargic. Bluegills have been caught in the weeds in 6 to 8 feet of water. Walleyes have been caught on crawlers and leeches fished in the weedbeds in 8 to 15 of water. Northern pike, smallmouth and largemouth bass have been caught all over the lake.
Lyman’s on the Lake, (989) 422-3231.
Higgins Lake Area
Fishing has been pretty good on Higgins Lake. Rock bass are hitting along the drop-offs all over the lake. Lake trout fishing has been pretty good in 80 to 100 feet of water at the north end of the lake and suspended rainbows have been caught 20 to 40 feet down. A few perch have been caught in 12 to 15 feet of water on the west side of the lake. Nightcrawlers and wax worms are both producing good results.
Higgins Lake Sport & Tackle, (989) 821-9517.
Walleye fishing has been good in the channel on the St. Mary’s River between Munuscong and Raber bays. Anglers are picking up fish when trolling nightcrawler harnesses and spoons in 18 to 25 feet of water. The water temperature was hovering around 64 to 65 degrees at Lime Island and anglers there are catching herring. Atlantic salmon fishing has been very good near the lighthouse at DeTour in 45 feet of water. Wax worms fished in 15 feet of water are producing good results. Pike and perch are hitting in Lake Huron at the Les Cheneaux Islands.
Wilderness Treasures, (906) 647-4002.
Drummond Island Area
Rain grounded a lot of anglers on Drummond Island recently. When they could get out they reported catching good numbers of pike and bass in Maxton and Scotts bays. Curltail spinners, nightcrawlers and bass chubs were picking up some bass and the northerns were being caught on spoons and pike chubs. Walleye and perch fishing has been slow around the island and the cisco have moved north to Lime Island. Salmon fishing has been slow but lake trout are hitting
Johnson’s Sport Shop, (906) 493-6300.
Fishing has been pretty good on Manistique Lakes. Bluegills, walleye, pike and bass are being caught on South Manistique. Walleye, pike, perch and bass are being caught on Big Manistique. One angler recently caught a 47-inch, 20-pound northern pike.
Mick’s Bait Shop, (906) 586-6040.
Limits or near limits of coho were being taken in the top 30 feet of water in Lake Superior’s Lower Marquette Harbor and off Shot Point. Limits of lake trout have been caught between the white rocks and Granite Island. Those running high lines also caught the occasional steelhead, brown trout or chinook.
Gander Mountain, (906) 226-8300.
Salmon fishing has been decent in Lake Michigan off Fairport. Those trolling spoons 40 to 70 feet down in 80 to 100 feet of water are catching good numbers of king salmon and a few lakers and steelhead. Several fish over 20 pounds have been caught. Walleye fishing is starting to pick up again in Little Bay de Noc, especially south of Escanaba near Minneapolis Shoals. Deep-diving crankbaits trolled in less than 40 feet of water are picking up fair numbers of fish. Pike fishing has been good, but a lot of small fish are being caught. Anywhere you find weeds, you’ll find northerns. Spinnerbaits, shallow-running crankbaits and suckers fished under a bobber are all producing good results Smallmouth bass fishing has been fair. The fish are spread out all over the bay.
Bay View Bait & Tackle, (906) 786-1488.
BayShore Resort Bait & Tackle, (906) 428-2950.
Iron Mountain Area
Bass fishing has been decent on the Menominee River. Walleye fishing has been so-so. Bluegills are hitting small leeches and worms. Leeches and top-water baits are producing a good bass bite. Northern pike and walleyes are hitting on Twin Falls Flowage, Peavy Pond and Michigammee Reservoir. Smallmouth bass and bluegills are keeping anglers busy on Lake Antoine.
Northwoods Wilderness Outfitters, (906) 774-9009.
Boat and shore anglers have caught walleye, freshwater drum, catfish, and smallmouth bass in the Menominee River below the Hattie Street Bridge. Boat anglers are trolling live bait and stick baits or casting spinners and plastics. Shore anglers were using live bait fished right on the bottom.
Waterfront Sport Shop, (906) (906) 424-4108.
Anglers reported fair catches of coho and lake trout in Lake Superior’s Keweenaw Bay. Successful anglers are trolling spoons throughout the water column in 80 feet of water or in the top 150 feet of waters 400 feet deep. Cohos were caught on spoons and stick baits near the lighthouse in the South Entry. In Traverse Bay, boat anglers had limited success with lake trout caught throughout the water column and coho taken in the top 50 feet of waters 150 feet deep.
Indian Country Sports, (906) 524-6518.
The perch bite remains hot on Lake Gogebic. Nightcrawlers fished in 7 to 12 feet of water and in 16 to 20 feet of water are working great. Walleye are hitting leeches and crawlers fished in the weeds and in hard bottom rocky areas, but the size has been running small. Smallmouth bass are very active as well, hitting crawlers, leeches and artificials in weeds and hard bottom areas.
Bear’s Nine Pines Resort, (906) 842-3361.
Iron River Area
Bass fishing has been great on Chicagon, Fortune, and Ottawa lakes. Top-water baits, crankbaits, tubes and jigs have all produced a decent bite along with nightcrawlers and minnows. A few walleyes have been caught, too, by those drifting crawlers and leeches. Anglers are still picking up some crappies and bluegills. Crappies are hitting minnows and the ‘gills are hitting crickets and worms.
Luckey’s Sport Shop, (906) 265-0151.
The DNR contributed to this report.