Winter weather continues to slow fishing activity

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John Raffel, Pioneer Sports Network


BIG FAST: DNR reports throughout the state, rain, snow and extremely cold temperatures have kept most fishermen at home.

Those outside have caught some pike perches in the inland lakes. Dock fishermen are getting lucky to get steelhead, whitefish and pike perch, the DNR said.

This is also the time of year to catch muskie and pike from the north, said the DNR.

Locally, it has been a slow week for fishing.

In Mecosta County, "many boys simply go to the forest," said Tanner Havens of Frank’s Sporting Goods in Morley.

"I haven't heard anything about fishing," said Billie Milligan of Paris Archery. "I heard some boys say there were frozen points, but not enough to keep going."

In northwest Michigan on the Platte River, the DNR said the egg-taking operation on the lower river has been completed. The DNR plans to eliminate the lower landfill on November 14.

"We're getting some steel tips in the water, but the water has really cooled down, so it's a thing here and there," said Steve Forester, of Backcast Flyshop in Benzonia.

When the dock fishermen were able to go out in Manistee, they continued to chase Steelhead when they used fresh spawn, the DNR said, adding that some white fish were hitting salmon eggs or wax worms.

"The colder temperatures are causing the water temperature to collapse, which could make fishing a bit harder in the next few days," said Chelsea Pete of DLoop Outfitters in Wellston. "Overall, it has been difficult lately."

The DNR said the water is a bit high and that Steelhead's fishing was fair on the Manistee River.

"They are still catching some salmon in Tippy Dam," said Rob Eckerson of Pappy’s Bait Shop. “Steel-head is also charging. The lower Big Manistee has been slow but the upper Manistee has been good.

"Little Manistee has been suffering from the high waters, but there are some fish there because of that. The wind and the weather have kept people away from the small lakes and the perches have not done much at this time."

Water temperatures below the Tippy dam were 40 to mid and high. The fishermen fished Steelhead, brown trout, in addition to the strange salmon in flies, beads, spinners and crank baits. Some fishermen, said the DNR, have been wading above and below the chest dam and caught some fish.

"There is still some salmon to catch on the beach if the waves calm down. I still haven't heard any reports of perches in the Portage or Manistee lakes," said Bud Fitzgerald of Tangled Tackle Co. in Manistee.

Water levels are high in the Pere Marquette River. Those who targeted Steelhead were receiving some, including flies, an egg pattern or a bill.

Fishing tip: autumn is an important time to think about the maintenance of the tackle

With the colder months rapidly approaching, many fishermen may be preparing to save their gear for the season. Below are some maintenance tips you should follow so that your equipment is taken care of and ready to use next season.

1.) Make sure your equipment is clean and completely dry before storing. Start by cleaning everything (rods, reels and line) in fresh water with soap or with the solution recommended by the manufacturer to remove any material that may have adhered or embedded.

2.) Inspect your equipment for damage and perform any repairs or prepare for replacements.

3.) Do not store any of your equipment in direct sunlight and do not store any of your equipment where heat and / or moisture may accumulate.

4.) Air your mosquitoes completely and do not forget to hang them upside down during the months that are not in use.

– Source: Michigan DNR


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