Michigan Outdoor News Fishing Report – Nov. 9, 2018


Lake St. Clair

Perch fishing has been good on Lake St. Clair. Anglers report a good bite at the spillway, off Grosse Pointe Yacht Club, and around Harsens Island. Walleyes are hitting crankbaits along the shoreline. Waterfowl hunting has been good with flight birds pushing their way through.

Lakeside Fishing Shops, (586) 777-7003.

Lake Orion

Bowhunters report seeing lots of activity over the past couple of weeks as the rut kicks in. Bucks are on the move at Bald Mountain Recreation Area and the firearms season should be good. Hunting for puddle dusks has been good, too. Fishing pressure has been very light. A few anglers are catching fair numbers of bass and pike on Orion and Lakeville lakes.

 Lakes Village Stop/Mobile Gas Station, (248) 693-4565.

Luna Pier Area

The perch bite continues to hold steady on Lake Erie with most boats getting 20 to 60 fish, and even a few limits. Fish were caught southeast of Stony Point in 25 feet of water, east of Stony Point near or in Ohio waters in 27 feet, and near the Dumping Grounds. Emerald shiners on perch rigs with green, orange and chartreuse spinners and/or beads were still the ticket. Catch rates for walleyes dropped to one or two fish. The best action was coming to anglers fishing east of Sterling State Park beach in 16 to 18 feet of water. Waterfowl hunting has been good with flight birds arriving daily. Corn is coming down and the firearms deer season should be good.

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


Coloma Area

A few steelhead have been caught in the Paw Paw River and the St. Joe River. Spawn has been the hot bait. The archery deer season has been very good. Corn is still standing and could have an impact on the early firearms season.

Ellinee Bait and Tackle, (269) 468-7522

Grand Rapids Area

Anglers fishing on the Grand River at the Sixth Street Dam reported catching light numbers of coho salmon and steelhead. The archery deer season has been good. The rut is on.

Al & Bob’s Sports, (616) 245-9156.

Plainwell Area

Fishing pressure has been light, but bowhunters report very good hunting with several nice bucks being taken. Beans are harvested and corn is coming down. Light numbers of bass, catfish and walleyes have been caught on Gun Lake when the weather allows them to get out.

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


Saginaw Bay Area

Perch fishing is heating up on Saginaw Bay. Boat anglers fishing off Eagle Bay Marina and the Pine River are catching perch in 7 to 10 feet of water. The keepers were running between 8 and 10 inches. Perch also have been caught near Buoy No. 18, in the old shipping channel, and off the loading dock near Spoils Island. Shore anglers fishing the lower Pine River have caught mostly small perch. Those trolling for walleye report catching some nice fish on crankbaits out past Buoys 1 and 2 and about a mile north of Spoils Island. Corn is coming down and should be in good shape, weather permitting.

Franks Great Outdoors, (989) 697-5341.

Lansing Area

Fishing action and pressure has been light on the Grand River. Light numbers of coho have been caught at Moore’s Park Dam and the North Lansing Dam. Try spinners or spawn bags. A few catfish also have been caught. Bowhunting has been pretty good and the firearms season should be good, too.

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

Weidman Area

Fishing pressure has been light but action has been good for those venturing out. Walleyes are hitting on Coldwater Lake and good numbers of bluegills have been caught on Stevenson Lake and Martiny Lakes. The rut is on and bucks are on the move. Corn is coming down fast and should be in good shape for the firearms deer season as long the weather holds up. Turkey hunting has been good, waterfowl hunting has been good, but grouse hunting has been slow.

Schafer’s Bait & Sporting Goods, (989) 644-3501.

Ludington Area

Steelhead are still being caught in Lake Michigan on spawn bags fished off the pier. Cohos are still down at the park. Catch rates were low but anglers were getting a few with artificial lures. The Pere Marquette River has been low and clear, which made steelhead fishing difficult. Down at Pentwater, perch fishing has been good in 20 to 35 feet of water with dropper-rigs tipped with minnows or small jigs tipped with wigglers and wax worms. 

Captain Chuck’s Fishing, Hunting and Archery, (231) 843-4458.


Caseville Area

The rut is on. Bucks are rubbing, scraping and chasing does. Beets have been harvested and farmers are starting to take down the corn. Most should be down – if the rain stays away – by the firearms opener. Waterfowl hunting has been very good along the shore of Lake Huron and flight ducks are moving through. Walleyes are hitting off the breakwall in Caseville. Bombers and Husky Jerks have produced a good bite. Burbot are being caught on minnows and a few lake trout have been caught, too. 

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

Harbor Beach Area

Night anglers casting off the breakwall continue to catch some walleyes in Lake Huron at the north gap. Crops are coming down. The rut is on. Deer numbers are in good shape in the Thumb and the firearms season should be good.

Frank’s Place Bait & Tackle, (989) 864-5634.


Traverse City Area

Perch fishing has been good in Bowers Harbor in West Grand Traverse Bay and out of the Northport on Lake Michigan. The best action has come in 80 to 120 feet of water. Big minnows have produced the best action. Steelhead fishing has been decent in the Boardman and lower Betsie rivers. Spawn, spinners and spoons are producing good results. The rut is on. Bucks are chasing does. The firearms deer season should be good. Leaves are falling fast. Grouse hunting has improved.

WildFishing Guide Service, www.wildfishing.com. 

Frankfort Area

The fish cleaning station has closed for the season. Pier and shore anglers on Lake Michigan have caught steelhead with spawn fished on the bottom. A couple of Master Angler steelhead have been verified so there are some good sized fish moving in. Those casting spoons have caught a couple of late run cohos.

Tackle Box, (231) 352-7673.


Houghton Lake Area

Fishing pressure has been light on Houghton Lake, but a few walleyes, northern pike and bluegills have been caught. Leaves are coming down fast and grouse hunting has improved a little. The rut is on. Bucks are on the move.

Lyman’s on the Lake, (989) 422-3231.

Alpena Area

Fishing pressure has been light on Lake Huron with high winds keeping boaters at the dock. The fish cleaning station is closed for the season and the marina will be closing soon. The launch ramps at the city launch and Fletcher Street should be in for a while yet. Anglers on the Thunder Bay River are waiting for the Atlantic salmon to finish spawning and the bite to pick up, which usually happens early to mid-November. Casting spoons and bodybaits worked best, however some were also drifting spawn, beads or flies under a bobber. No reports of steelhead yet, but they should be in shortly. Be sure to check the Atlantic salmon for a missing adipose fin and a coded wire tag in their snout. The heads can be turned in at the Alpena Research Station or Clem’s Bait and Tackle. 

Clem’s Live Bait & Tackle, (989) 354-2070.

Oscoda Area

Atlantic salmon are spawning in the Au Sable River so it has been hard to get them to strike. Those casting spoons and spinners or swinging and stripping streamer flies had the best luck, with fish up to 12 pounds caught. Atlantic salmon with a missing adipose fin have a coded wire tag in their snout. Anglers are asked to turn the heads in at Wellman’s, Au Sable River Store, Haglund’s, The Dam Store, or Harrisville State Park. The steelhead action picked up a little bit as fish were caught by those casting spoons or bottom bouncing and floating spawn bags. 

Wellman’s Sport Center, (989) 739-2869.


Pickford Area

Walleye and muskie fishing has been pretty good in Munuscong Bay. Those trolling crankbaits have enjoyed the best success. A few splake have still been caught in Lake Huron at Hessel and salmon and steelhead are hitting off the river mouths. Leaves are down and grouse hunting has improved. Diver ducks are coming through and waterfowlers have had good success. The firearms deer season should be pretty good. Deer numbers are up in the area.

Wilderness Treasures, (906) 647-4002.

Drummond Island Area

A few yellow perch are still being caught at Ashman Island which is straight west of Scotts Bay. Try shiners or small worms a foot off the bottom in 12 to 14 feet of water. On the calm days, smallmouth bass were caught just off Bruce Point. Anglers were using an orange artificial tube jig with black spots while jigging along the rock piles in four to six feet. Leaves are down and grouse hunting has picked up a little. The firearms deer season should be good.

Johnson’s Sport Shop, (906) 493-6300.

Curtis Area

Fishing pressure has been light on Manistique Lakes but those heading out are catching a mixed bag of walleyes, pike, crappies, perch and bluegills. Leaves are mostly down and grouse hunting has improved a little. Bird numbers appear to be down overall. Waterfowl hunting has been good and flight birds are moving through.

Mick’s Bait Shop, (906) 586-6040.


Marquette Area

Leaves are down and grouse hunting has picked up, but most of the woodcock have passed through. Duck hunting has been good and northern birds are pushing through the area. Deer numbers appear to be up a little and the firearms deer season should be pretty good. A few boat anglers have been out targeting lake trout and salmon between the Lower Harbor and the “white rocks” – when the weather allows. Most caught lake trout in 30 to 70 feet of water including a few limit catches. Salmon fishing has been slow with only a few chinook and coho being caught. The end of the breakwall in the Lower Harbor has been a hot spot with anglers getting a fair number of lake trout along and light numbers of coho and steelhead. The lake trout have just started spawning so if the weather cooperates there should be a few more chances for anglers to get out and catch more fish. The Carp, Dead, and Chocolay rivers had meager reports with only a few coho, steelhead and brown trout caught. 

Gander Mountain, (906) 226-8300.

Escanaba Area

Leaves are down and grouse hunting has improved. Duck hunting has been good. Bowhunters report that bucks are chasing does. The firearms season should be pretty good. Anglers are catching walleyes and smallmouth bass in Little Bay de Noc. The best walleye catches were at night in 18 to 40 feet of water when trolling stickbaits from Gladstone Bay south to the Escanaba lighthouse. The better bass catches were coming from the Black Bottom to Farmers Dock on plastics or minnows fished in 15 to 30 feet of water. On Big Bay de Noc, bass anglers are catching fish from Sand Bay to the Burnt Bluff area. Catch rates were good when fishing with minnows in 12 to 25 feet of water.

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

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

Iron Mountain Area

Bucks are rubbing and scraping, but some were still in bachelor groups. The firearms season should be pretty good if the weather holds up. Deer numbers are on the upswing. Leaves are down, but grouse hunting has been slow. A few birds have been found in pockets. Woodcock have pretty much moved through. Fishing pressure has been light, but muskie fishing has been good on the Paint Pond and Brule Backwaters.

Northwoods Wilderness Outfitters, (906) 774-9009.


L’Anse Area

Those trolling in shallow waters had nice catches of coho, brown trout and splake in Lake Superior’s Keweenaw Bay. Most were using a flasher/fly combo, spoons or stickbaits. Most of the fish were still tight with spawn so look for fish pushing up into the river soon. Leaves are down and grouse hunting has improved. Bowhunters report seeing decent numbers of deer.

Indian Country Sports, (906) 524-6518.

Bergland Area

Fishing pressure has been very light on Lake Gogebic. A few shore anglers are catching walleyes on sucker minnows. Light numbers of northern pike have been caught, too. Leaves are down in the western U.P. and upland bird hunting has been pretty good, although hunting pressure has been light. The bear season was fair. Hot weather and heavy rain put a damper on some success. Deer hunting has been decent. Bucks are rubbing, scraping and chasing does. The firearms deer season should be decent. Deer numbers are improving.

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

Iron River Area

Muskie fishing has been pretty good on most lake in the area including Chicagon. Leaves are down and bucks are chasing does. Grouse hunting has been fair.

Luckey’s Sport Shop, (906) 265-0151.

The DNR contributed to this report.

Categories: Michigan Fishing Reports, News

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