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Tuesday, January 31st, 2023

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Michigan Outdoor News Fishing Report – Sept. 29, 2017


Lake St. Clair

Fishing has been slow on Lake St. Clair and fishing pressure light. Walleye action has been very good in the Detroit and St. Clair rivers. Anglers jigging, handlining and trolling nightcrawlers with the current all report a good bite. Early mornings and nights have been the best.

Lakeside Fishing Shops, (586) 777-7003.

Luna Pier Area

Perch fishing has been very good on Lake Erie. The trick is to get outside algae bloom where the water starts to clear up. Those heading out about 3.5 miles and fishing near the E Marker are catching lots of “very nice” perch. Goose hunting started out very good but has slowed.

Luna Pier Harbour Club, (734) 848-8777.


Sturgis Area

Bluegills and bass have been keeping anglers busy on Klinger and other lakes in St. Joseph County. The recent warm spell has the fish holding in their summer patterns.

Klinger Lake Trading Post, (269) 651-2679.

Grand Rapids Area

The Grand River continues to have extremely low water levels. Up at the Sixth Street Dam, a small but steady stream of coho were using the fish ladder.

Al & Bob’s Sports, (616) 245-9156.

Plainwell Area

Fishing has been very good on Gun Lake. Anglers are catching good numbers of bluegills and crappies along with a few perch. Largemouth and smallmouth bass, northern pike and catfish have also been active. Anglers report catching limits of big ‘gills when drifting worms along the weeds on the west side of the lake, or dunking crickets in 30 feet of water on the east side. Goose hunting has been slow. Deer numbers are in good shape in Barry and Allegan counties.

Gillett’s Bait and Hardware, (269) 672-5371.


Saginaw Bay Area

Perch fishing has been pretty good on Lake Huron’s Saginaw Bay. Limits of 8- to 12-inch perch have been caught around the first set of buoys along the modern shipping channel. Other spots worth trying are near Buoys 17 and 18, and out near the Spark Plug in 23 feet of water. A few walleyes have been caught at Callahan Reef and in the Slot between Sebewaing and Bay Port. Archery deer season should be pretty good in mid-Michigan.

Franks Great Outdoors, (989) 697-5341.

Lansing Area

The Grand River is low and warm. There was little fishing activity at Grand Ledge and Portland and very light numbers of fish. The Webber Dam had about 60 cohos in the ladder last week with many surfacing up in the reservoir. Water levels are extremely low with many gravel bars exposed. Water temperatures are still high. Deer hunters are reminded of mandatory check-in of harvested deer and to check the Hunting and Trapping Digest for additional CWD regulations.

Grand River Bait & Tackle, (517) 482-4461.

Grand Haven Area

Boat anglers on Lake Michigan are finding a decent number of lake trout but salmon action continues to be slow. Lakers are hitting in the bottom 100 feet in 140 to 200 feet of water. A white flasher/fly combo and a green or yellow Spin-N-Glo have been the hot baits. A few salmon were caught 50 to 90 feet down in 150 to 250 feet of water on green or blue spoons. Pier fishing has been very slow.

Lakeview Marine & Tackle, (616) 842-2770.


Caseville Area

The youth deer hunt was warm and wet but kids took some nice deer. Goose hunting has been pretty good despite the warm weather. Anglers report a pretty good walleye bite on nightcrawler harnesses drifted in 15 to 20 feet of water near the water tower at Sand Point.

Walsh Gun & Tackle, (989) 856-4465.

Port Huron

Handliners and whippers are catching good numbers of walleyes at night on the St. Clair River. Smallmouth bass fishing also has been good in the river. On southern Lake Huron, those fishing in 120 to 140 feet of water report catching a mixed bag of steelhead, chinook salmon, Atlantic salmon, lake trout and walleye. Goose hunting started out very good, but has slowed. Hunting pressure has been light with recent warm temperatures. The archery deer season should be good in St. Clair County.

Anderson’s Pro Bait, (810) 984-3232.


Traverse City Area

Those trolling in the morning in East Grand Traverse Bay have caught good numbers of coho and a few chinook along the west bank and along the drop-off at the south end. Lake trout fishing has been good north of the M-37 launch and off Deepwater Point. A good number of lake herring have been caught by those trolling and jigging. At Elk Rapids, lake trout and lake herring have been caught straight out from the marina. Smallmouth bass were taken in 10 to 15 feet or as deep as 30 feet. The Elk River was producing coho and a few chinook in the early morning. In West Grand Traverse Bay, chinook and coho have been caught from the south end off Clinch Park. Those targeting perch did well in Suttons Bay but the fishing off Lee Point was hit-or-miss.

WildFishing Guide Service, www.wildfishing.com.

Cadillac Area

Salmon fishing has been very good in the Manistee and Betsie rivers. The early and late bites have been best. Bass, pike and panfish are hitting on lakes Cadillac and Mitchell. Best bite has come from suspended crappies in 20 feet of water on the east end of Cadillac. Some decent perch have been caught under the crappies. Goose hunting has been fair in pockets. Grouse hunting has been slow with the warm weather keeping hunters home. Deer numbers seem to be up in the area.

Pilgrim Village Fishing Shop, (231) 775-5412.


Rogers City Area

The trout and salmon fishing is winding down on Lake Huron but there appears to be a large hatch of smelt this year and the fish are starting to feed heavily on them. Adult chinook salmon have moved out deeper because of the warm spell and warmer water in the bay and river. There is cold water out deep and that is where the fish appear to be staging. Those trolling have done well with spoons, J-plugs, flashers with flies, squid or cut bait. Good colors were green, blue, black and white, bloody nose or anything that glows. The early and late bites have been the best. Most are catching a mixed bag of salmon, trout and walleye.

Adrian’s Sport Shop, (989) 734-2303

Atlanta Area

Goose hunting has been real good. Flight birds are starting to appear and there are still a lot of local birds around. Grouse hunters are moving a lot of birds but the foliage is thick. Woodcock numbers have been fair but they are all local birds so far. Deer numbers look great in the northeastern Lower. Fall fishing has been good, but pressure has been light. Inland lakes are giving up bluegills, and smallmouth bass have been active on Avery Lake. The early elk hunt has gone very well. Most of the bull tags have been filled including the three Pure Michigan Hunt winners.

Elk Country Outfitters NEMI, (989) 306-0720, www.ElkCountryOutfittersNEMI.com.

Higgins Lake Area

A few anglers were picking up some lake trout on Higgins Lake last week. Smallmouth bass were hitting off Flag Point and around Treasure Island by those casting between the shallows and 20 feet of water. Perch anglers were starting to pick up a few bigger fish in 20 feet of water. Large rock bass are still being caught, too.

Higgins Lake Sport & Tackle, (989) 821-9517.


Drummond Island Area

Yellow perch catches were decent around Drummond Island, but nowhere near peak yet. Warm water temperatures have kept the bigger fish from entering the bays. Anglers report catching some good-sized fish, but sorting through a lot of small ones. Smaller minnows seem to be the bait of choice. The schools are moving, but good starting spots include Maxton Bay and around Rutland, Peck, James, Grape, and Bald islands.

Johnson’s Sport Shop, (906) 493-6300.

Curtis Area

Bird hunters are moving decent numbers of grouse and bear hunting is off to a good start. Perch are starting to turn on in Big Manistique Lake and bluegills are hitting on South Manistique. Bass and pike action has been good on both lakes.

on both lakes. Mick’s Bait Shop, (906) 586-6040.


Escanaba Area

Walleye catches have been spotty throughout Lake Michigan’s Little Bay De Noc. There has been a good bite at the mouth of the Escanaba River when trolling a crawler harness or stickbaits along the weed lines. Perch fishing has been good in the same area with minnows fished in 18 to 25 feet of water. Pike are hitting between the south end of the Black Bottom and the Escanaba beach area. Most fish were hitting crankbaits and spinners in 6 to 12 feet of water. A few salmon were caught near the mouth of the river as well.

Bay View Bait & Tackle, (906) 786-1488.

BayShore Resort Bait & Tackle, (906) 428-2950.

Iron Mountain Area

Bear hunting has been slow in Dickinson County with warm weather hampering bear movement. Grouse hunting has been pretty good, but heavy foliage remains. Fishing has been slow on the Menominee River. Fair numbers of smallmouth bass and northern pike have been caught and a few splake are hitting at Lake Ellen.

Northwoods Wilderness Outfitters, (906) 774-9009.

Menominee Area

Anglers report catching walleyes, pike, smallmouth bass and catfish in the Menominee River. The best bites have come to those trolling or jigging between Bum Island and the mouth. No salmon were observed.

Waterfront Sport Shop, (906) (906) 424-4108.


Bergland Area

Fishing on Lake Gogebic has been fair. Smallmouth bass are still active in hard bottom areas. Walleyes have been hit or miss. The best action has come to those working the weeds and the deeper mud flats. Crawlers and leeches are still getting the best results. Bear hunting has been good despite the hot weather. Grouse season opened with hunters and grouse both in low numbers. Hunters are seeing a few more young birds than we did last year so that’s a good sign. Bird numbers seem low, with only a few reports in certain areas that hunters have seen good numbers.

Bear’s Nine Pines Resort, (906) 842-3361.

Iron River Area

Bear season has been very good in Iron County. One hunter shot a 439-pouder (dressed). Grouse hunting has been fair but hunting pressure light. The fall turkey season has been good. Fishing has been very good for northern pike and bass on most lakes in the area.

Luckey’s Sport Shop, (906) 265-0151.

The DNR contributed to this report.

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