Hook & Hunting: September 13 Weekly Fishing Report
NORTHEAST LOWER PENINSULA
Cheboygan: Anglers continue to troll between the bell and Mackinaw City, near LaFayette and Cordwood Point and the back side of Bois Blanc Island. Try spoons in black and chartreuse, green and gold or variations of green.
Cheboygan River: Is still producing smallmouth bass, rock bass and freshwater drum between the Foot Bridge and the Lock. Salmon are beginning to stage at the mouth of the river.
Hammond Bay: Those able to make it out are trolling Nine Mile Point for salmon, steelhead and lake trout when fishing 20 to 30 feet down in 90 feet of water.
Rogers City: Is reporting a large number of steelhead and they are hitting all through the water column. Most were caught on orange spoons followed by green or bright colored spoons or body baits. Anglers were taking a nice mix of chinook, coho, steelhead, lake trout, pink salmon or Atlantic salmon. Look for structure or baitfish in 50 to 100 feet of water. Put downriggers about halfway down and planer boards with lead core. Good colors were green, blue, black and white, orange or yellow. The chinook are not yet staging off Swan Bay.
Presque Isle: Had great fishing with a mixed bag of trout and salmon until the last cold front. Look for catch rates to resume in 50 to 100 feet of water between the two lighthouses and south. Find the baitfish and structure. Set downriggers halfway down and planer boards with lead core in three, five and seven colors.
Rockport: Those trolling spoons caught salmon and steelhead 20 to 50 feet down in 120 feet of water. Purple was the hot color.
Alpena: Fishing has been outstanding with good numbers of steelhead caught at all depths but shallow waters were best. Steelhead and chinook were caught between 50 and 100 feet of water. Catch rates for chinook are the best we have seen since 2004. Lake trout action was good between the thermocline and the bottom. Coho and walleye were also caught. This pattern should hold for another week or two.
Thunder Bay River: Smallmouth bass were caught on husky jerks, spinners and rapalas. A few rock bass were also caught.
Harrisville: Salmon are starting to make their way around and into the harbor. Early morning and late evening were the best times to fish with blue and silver, green and silver or green and glow Cleo's. Wobblers and body baits in black and silver also worked well. Those traveling outside the harbor walls are fishing in 45 to 80 feet of water as the fish are suspended. A few walleye were also caught.
Oscoda: Is producing a mixed bag of walleye, salmon, lake trout, and steelhead. Chrome colored fish were caught off the pier and near the mouth of the river. Try green or blue Cleo's, wobblers or body baits
Au Sable River: Salmon were moving into the river and some have even made it up to the dam.
Tawas: Some perch were caught down toward Alabaster in 17 to 20 feet of water. Boats off Jerry's Marina were marking fish but catch rates were slow.
Au Gres: Had fair to good perch fishing in 40 to 45 feet of water between Point Lookout and Pointe Au Gres. Some were heading south and fishing off the Eagle's Landing Marina. A couple walleye were caught on crawler harnesses.
NORTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA
Petoskey: Boat anglers are doing better as more coho are showing up. They are fishing 65 to 100 feet down in 130 to 140 feet between the Cliffs and Bay Harbor with spoons, J-plugs, meat rigs or dodgers with flies. Green was the hot color. Salmon were caught early or late off the pier and the docks at the marina.
Bear River: Has fish however catch rates up near the dam were good one day and slow the next. Try natural spawn bags or rubber eggs.
Charlevoix: Chinook and a couple coho were caught 80 to 90 feet down in 140 feet of water near the cement plant. Pier anglers caught smallmouth bass on crawlers and leeches. Salmon were caught off the north pier early or late. Most were using glow spoons or blue and white wobblers. Medusa Creek was dredged last week. That allowed salmon to enter the weir which is up and running. The area is now closed to fishing.
Lake Charlevoix: Was producing limit catches of walleye in 30 to 40 feet of water around Oyster Bay. Most were trolling artificial crawlers or crawler harnesses.
Traverse City: Chinook and lake trout have been caught in the West Bay near the “Hole” or the East Bay along the Southwest Bank when trolling spoons or plugs 30 to 90 feet down. Green, blue, silver and glow J-plugs worked best in low light.
Elk River: A few salmon entered the river. Try fishing with skein or spawn bags.
Boardman River: The salmon are running. Look for a large push of new fish with any significant rainfall. Most are drifting skein under a bobber.
Platte River: Fisheries staff began passing fish at the Lower Platte Weir this week. The adults appear to be in the three to seven pound range. Those casting spinners caught chinook and coho. Those still-fishing with spawn did best at the mouth which is currently being dredged to remove the sand. The river is so low boats are not able to float off the trailers.
Frankfort: Windy conditions turned the water over so the alewife are in and so are the salmon. Good numbers of chinook and coho have been caught off the Elberta and Frankfort piers by those using spawn, spoons or plugs. Boats trolling inside or just outside the piers have also landed some nice catches. Jigging has been active around the mouth, the car ferry landing and along the north shoreline.
Arcadia: Fishing slowed but coho and steelhead were found 60 feet down in 200 feet of water.
Onekama: Anglers are picking up chinook and coho off the north breakwall in the morning when casting glow spoons or plugs. Those trolling have done well 60 to 80 feet down in 80 to 120 feet of water in the early morning between 6:30 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. or in the evening just before sunset.
Portage Lake: A few eight to 10 inch perch along with some nice bluegills were caught. Worms and wigglers are working best but anglers will still have to sort out the small ones. Coho were seen near the mouth.
Lake Cadillac: Is producing crappie, bluegill and even some perch for those using wax worms, minnows and leaf worms. Bass anglers are doing well with minnows or spinners when drifting or casting over the weed beds.
Manistee: The salmon fishery for adult chinook is starting to wind down, although younger chinook and steelhead are always available out in deeper water. Anglers trolling the harbor found decent numbers of chinook and coho. Glow plugs worked well during low light and chrome plugs worked later in the morning. Boats heading out and fishing 60 feet down in 80 to 160 feet of water found salmon. Pier anglers caught salmon on spoons and live bait.
Manistee Lake: Is producing adult chinook salmon.
Manistee River: Water levels are extremely low. So far the runs have been sporadic. Fish can be found in the deeper holes in the lower stretches.
Ludington: Cooler water temperatures have moved chinook and coho in closer to the piers. Boats have done very well with glow plugs in the early morning. Those Boats trolling between the Bath House and the Point have done well in 60 to 180 feet of water with glow plugs and orange spoons in the top 60 feet. Pier anglers are doing very well when casting spoons or live bait. Those surfcasting at the State Park have also caught a few salmon.
Pere Marquette Lake: Is currently producing chinook salmon.
Pere Marquette River: Salmon are in the river however movement has been slow due to the low water levels.
Pentwater: Pier anglers are starting to catch fish as the salmon are moving in. Most are using spoons as spawn is not working yet. Pier anglers caught a few brown trout on chartreuse or red spoons. Boats were trolling J-plugs and blue flies in 60 to 150 feet of water off Silver Lake.
Keweenaw Bay: Is producing chinook, coho and lake trout between Sand Point and the Keweenaw Roadside Park. Try spoons 25 to 70 feet down in 30 to 90 feet of water. Trolling speeds were between 2.2 and 2.9 mph.
Marquette: A few chinook were caught by shore anglers casting stick baits near the mouth of the Carp River. Surface water temperatures have cooled to the low 60's.
Dead River: A few anglers were out but no salmon were reported.
Menominee: Walleye anglers are trolling in 30 feet of water near Green Island and in front of Red Arrow Park. Catch rates were fair for those using crawler harnesses or thundersticks. Walleye fishing was good in 25 to 30 feet of water north and south of the Cedar River. Night anglers did best. Strong winds have pushed weeds in closer to shore so anglers will need to check their bait often.
Menominee River: Boat anglers caught walleye but many were small. Northern pike, smallmouth, freshwater drum and rock bass were caught by those trolling crawler harnesses or crank baits. Shore anglers near the Hattie Street Dam caught crappie, perch and rock bass on wax worms, crawlers or minnows.
Little Bay De Noc: A good number of walleye were marked from the Narrows south to the Black Bottom however catch rates were only fair for those jigging along the weed lines in 10 to 14 feet of water. Perch were caught in 10 to 26 feet of water between the Second and Third Reefs as well as 20 to 30 feet around the Escanaba coal dock. Fair to good smallmouth bass action around the mouth of the Ford River when casting plastics or crank baits in 10 to 17 feet of water. Shore anglers in the same area reported seeing salmon but no catches were reported.
Big Bay De Noc: Dredging is taking place at the Nahma Boat Launch. No walleye to report this week. Fair perch fishing in Garden Bay as most anglers were drifting and looking for schools of fish. Try crawlers in eight to 12 feet of water. Smallmouth bass action was fair to excellent off Garden Bluff when drifting crawlers or minnows in 10 to 25 feet of water. Some day's the fish are up on the shelf and other day's they were caught in deeper water.
Au Train: Offshore water temperatures have cooled to the mid to low 60's and the near shore surface water temperatures were 60 degrees.
Munising: A few coho were caught by anglers fishing around Grand Island and near Miners Castle. Lake trout anglers are fishing in 100 to 160 feet of water as the fish are starting to stage. Pier fishing is slowly improving for coho and splake. Most are still-fishing spawn bags or casting spoons and spinners.
Grand Marais: Lake trout anglers had success fishing five to eight miles north of the bay in 100 to 180 feet of water. A few coho were caught right along with lake trout in 100 feet of water. No pier or shore fishing reports.
St. Mary's River: Walleye fishing slowed in Raber Bay. Smallmouth bass action was very good on both sides of Round Island. Anglers are jigging tube baits in six to eight feet of water around the rock piles. Some are looking for yellow perch around Lime Island but no fish were reported. Anglers need to use extreme caution because water levels remain low along the entire St. Mary's watershed.
Detour: Chinook salmon are beginning to move from the lighthouse to the harbor. Fish have been caught by those trolling J-plugs or silver hammered spoons. A couple pink salmon were caught around the lighthouse and to the north when trolling chrome and red spoons 35 feet down in 80 feet of water. A few walleye were caught on the north end of the village across from Pipe Island when trolling bottom bouncers and crawler harnesses. Purple and orange blades worked best.
Drummond Island: A few perch were caught along the weed beds in 14 to 18 feet of water around Harbor Island and Ashman Island. Smallmouth bass were caught off Bruce's Point and the north end of Scott's Bay when jigging tube jigs and crawlers. Anglers need to be careful when launching or boating in this area.
Cedarville and Hessel: Pink salmon action has been excellent out of Hessel while perch fishing was good out of Cedarville. Anglers are fishing Musky Bay and the Middle Entrance with minnows and crawlers in 10 feet of water. A good number of smallmouth bass are being caught by those casting near the rocks and off the points.
St. Ignace: Continues to provide great chinook and pink salmon fishing. Boats are trolling 60 to 90 feet down with orange lures. Hot spots were the Coast Guard Station, north past the old fuel tanks and the west side of Mackinac Island. Salmon are beginning to stage at the mouth of the Carp River and Nunn's Creek.