Hook & Hunting: September 6 Weekly Fishing Report - Northern Michigan's News Leader

Hook & Hunting: September 6 Weekly Fishing Report

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NORTHEAST LOWER PENINSULA


Cheboygan:  Anglers are trolling spoons from the bell to Mackinaw City, the back side of Bois Blanc Island, LaFayette Point and Cordwood Point. Black and chartreuse, watermelon, purple and cream or light orange were good colors. 

Cheboygan River:  Anglers are fishing the Foot Bridge to the Lock with crawler pieces or artificial gobies for smallmouth bass, freshwater drum and rock bass.  

Rogers City:  Still no major number of fish to be seen in Swan Bay as the fish are still out in deep water. Fish are being caught all along the coast. Find structure and start 30 to 55 feet down in 50 to 90 feet of water. Anglers may also want to fish all through the water column with J-plugs and attractors with squid, flies or cut bait. 

Presque Isle:  Has a good mixed bag fishery between the two lighthouses or straight out and south towards Stoneport. Find the thermocline in 50 to 120 feet of water. 

Rockport:  Lake trout, steelhead, Chinook salmon and a few walleye have been caught off False Presque Isle, Stoneport and the Nordmere Wreck. Spoons, spin glows, dodgers, and rapalas have worked well 75 to 110 feet down in 140 feet of water. Walleye were caught in 35 to 65 feet of water. 

Thunder Bay River:  Yellow perch, rock bass, and a few catfish were caught off the docks in the marina. Nightcrawlers worked best. Smallmouth bass were hitting on spinners, crawlers or leaf worms. There are a couple salmon in the river but catch rates have not been good. 

Harrisville:  Boat anglers are catching salmon, steelhead, lake trout, brown trout and even a few walleye north of the harbor off the lighthouse. The fish are scattered in 45 to 115 feet of water. Try wobble glows, spoons or body baits. Blue was a good color. 

Oscoda:  Is producing some nice steelhead catches with the fish averaging seven to 12 pounds. Try 65 to 90 feet of water with blue combination and orange combination lures. Salmon have been caught near the mouth of the river. Lake trout were caught in 50 to 90 feet of water. 

Au Sable River:  Salmon seem to be making their way into the river. Walleye are still on the slow side, but as water temperatures drop, they will return.  

Houghton Lake:  Is producing bluegill and walleye.   

Tawas:  A few walleye were caught off the end of the pier by those casting crank baits at night. Only other catches were a few small perch and the occasional channel catfish. Night anglers caught walleye in 30 feet of water out near Buoy #2.  

Au Gres:  Had lots of perch fishing activity. Most of the fish were caught in 20 to 40 feet of water from Point Lookout to south of Pointe Au Gres. Boat anglers caught a couple walleye when trolling crawler harnesses in 25 feet of water off the Gravelly Shoals. No trout or salmon have shown up at the Singing Bridge yet.

NORTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA


Harbor Springs:  Anglers are focusing their effort just outside the harbor and west of Harbor Point to Winward. Catch rates were hit-or-miss. Try 80 feet down in 100 feet of water with green flies. 

Petoskey:  Catch rates were slow but a few fish were taken 50 to 100 feet down in 120 feet of water. Those fishing in shallow water just outside the breakwall are trying to catch fish as they enter the Bear River. Good colors were green and white, black or glow. Some are targeting salmon off the breakwall and near the mouth of the river. Try spawn bags, flies or spoons. 

Bear River:  Not many fish were at the dam most likely due to the low water levels and warm temperatures. 

Charlevoix:  Some boats had success while others came back empty handed. Most are fishing around the "Can" at the cement plant. Try 50 to 100 feet down in 120 to 140 feet of water with meat rigs, glow spoons, J-plugs, Hootchie Mamas and flies. Try small spoons, not magnums. There is now pressure at Medusa Creek. Anglers were fishing all night from boats. Those wading near the cement plant have caught a few salmon. Pier anglers are still catching smallmouth bass. 

Traverse City:  Chinook and lake trout have been caught in both bays. The salmon are staging, and were caught in a variety of depths. Most are running 30 to 90 feet down with a variety of lures. Green and blue were the hot colors. 

Elk River:  Fishing has been relatively slow. A couple steelhead were near the power dam, the salmon should be running soon. 

Boardman River:  Chinook salmon and the occasional steelhead have begun to show up in the river. Numbers were low, but a few anglers are fishing with skein or spawn bags. 

Platte Bay:  Coho fishing is slow but a few are being caught on green glow and pearl J-plugs. Spoons like wonder bread and moon shine also work. 

Platte River:  Water temperatures are warm and no fish have run at this point. Dredging has started at the mouth of the river. 

Frankfort:  Several Chinook and coho were caught in the early morning or late evening just outside or inside the breakwalls. Jigging in the bay and around the car ferry landing is producing good action. The salmon are reluctant to start heading up into the Betsie River because of the low water levels. At last report, the fish are turning dark. Those fishing out deep are still finding good catches 70 to 100 feet down in 120 to 200 feet of water with J-plugs or meat rigs. The coho are stacked in an area near Point Betsie however the bite was slow. 

Arcadia:  Catch rates improved for those trolling 110 to 210 feet of water. Chinook and coho were caught on J-plugs 60 feet down. 

Onekama:  Start fishing near the Barrel in the early morning then head out and fish 65 to 90 feet down in 120 to 190 feet of water. Some nice chinook salmon have been caught. Those trolling in front of the golf course caught chinook, coho, steelhead and brown trout with small spoons, J-plugs, meat rigs and flies. 

Portage Lake:  Trolling the west side near the mouth or in front of the Inn has produced a few coho as they move in to spawn. The bass and bluegill bite was best in the early morning in 18 to 22 feet of water around the buoy and along the drops. 

Manistee:  Has good salmon fishing. Try blue plugs, green spinnies and flies 80 feet down in 90 to 150 feet of water. Pier anglers caught a few fish with glow spoons.  

Manistee River:  Low, clear, and warm water has made river fishing tough. Some chinook are in the river though getting them to bite has not been easy. The Little Manistee River below the weir closed to fishing on September 1 and will re-open on November 15.  

Manistee Lake:  The southern end near the mouth of the Little Manistee River will close to fishing on September 6 and will re-open on October 15 or when the DNR egg quota is reached. This closed area is marked by DNR buoys. 

Ludington:  Has good catches of Chinook salmon with a few coho mixed in. The thermocline was 50 feet down in 90 to 150 feet of water. Try green or blue plugs. Pier fishing is slow but fish have been caught in Pere Marquette Lake. 

Pere Marquette River:  Salmon are in the river however the better fishing may still be in the lower stretches until we get more rain and the water temperatures cool. 

Pentwater:  The salmon have moved in a little as anglers caught fish in 115 to 130 feet of water. Only a few salmon have been caught from the piers.

UPPER PENINSULA


Black River Harbor:  Fishing was good in the early morning and evening. Anglers are using a flasher/fly combo as well as glow spoons. Look for surface water temperatures of 65 degrees or less. 

Ontonagon:  Fishing was slow with only a few lake trout caught on green spoons in 70 to 115 feet of water. 

Marquette:  Anglers did quite well for lake trout east of the White Rocks, near the Sand Hole, the Clay Banks and Stannard Rock with downriggers near the bottom in 120 to 160 feet of water with spoons and flies. Coho were caught in the evening when trolling near the Chocolay River. 

Dead River:  The dam is in at the Tourist Park so water levels will vary depending on the power company. Few were fishing as no salmon were in sight. 

Menominee:  Night fishing for walleye is going well but a few fish were also caught during the day. Anglers are heading north and south of the Carp River and fishing in 20 to 30 feet of water with crawler harnesses or reef runners. Fish were also caught near Green Island in 30 to 50 feet of water with rapalas or reef runners. Bluegills, perch and rock bass were caught near the launch at the Lighthouse. Try crawlers or wax worms. Pike were caught off the pier in the marina. 

Menominee River:  Catch rates for walleye were slow on both sides near the Hattie Street Bridge. Smallmouth and rock bass were caught by those targeting walleye. 

Cedar River:  Those fishing from the mouth to the Interstate Bridge caught smallmouth bass but many were sub-legal. Try crawlers or crank baits.  

Little Bay De Noc:  Water levels have dropped but the cooler nights have helped the walleye anglers. Night anglers are fishing the Second or Third Reefs when trolling crawler harnesses in 12 to 23 feet of water and off the Terrace Bay Inn in 16 to 33 feet of water. Catch rates were fair. Those fishing during the day have caught a few fish near the mouth of the Escanaba River in 14 to 28 feet of water. Those fishing down near the shoals had mixed results when trolling crank baits or crawler harnesses in 20 to 35 feet of water. Perch were caught in eight to 23 feet of water off Kipling and 20 to 25 feet of water off the Escanaba River when still-fishing with crawlers.  

Big Bay De Noc:   Catch rates for bass were down a bit. Anglers are fishing off Ogontz, Poplar Point, and Garden Bluff.  Try crank baits, plastics or spinners in 12 to 20 feet of water. Perch were caught in Garden Bay but many were small. Try eight to 12 feet of water along the old pilings. No walleye to report. At Fairport, salmon catches were fair out in the "Gap" when trolling spoons or artificial cut bait in 90 to 125 feet of water. The season here started early this year and seemed to peak in June. 

Au Train:  Lake trout action was fair for those trolling spoons in 100 to 150 feet of water. A couple coho were caught in the bay. No activity at the Rock River. 

St. Mary's River:  Smallmouth bass are hitting on the north side of Lime Island in six to eight feet of water. Try tube jigs off the rock piles. 

Detour:  Those fishing near the Detour Lighthouse are catching pink salmon on orange and gold or green and white spoons. Anglers are trolling in over 90 feet of water and the fish were hitting 35 feet down. Lake trout have been caught near the reef when trolling east to the Red Buoy on the Drummond Island side in 60 to 70 feet of water. Off the north side of the island, smallmouth bass were caught in Scotts Bay and off Bruce's Point when casting or jigging tube jigs around the rock piles in four to eight feet of water. 

Cedarville and Hessel:  Has excellent salmon fishing in 60 to 80 feet of water off Hessel. Good numbers of pink salmon are also being caught. Those fishing the east end of Hessel Bay and off the Hessel Marina pier have caught perch and smallmouth bass. Pike action picked up for those trolling, casting or still-fishing around the islands with minnows or chubs.  


St. Ignace:  Remains good for Chinook salmon. This is also the year that pink salmon are present in high numbers! Fish the Coast Guard Station, north past the old fuel tanks and off both the east and west sides of Mackinac Island. Anglers are fishing 60-90 feet down with orange lures. 

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