IRON MOUNTAIN - A return to cold weather should help solidify ice in those areas affected by last week's warm-up, but anglers should proceed with caution, especially in areas near pressure cracks and where creeks or streams flow into a lake.
Panfishing remains steady, as well as the northern bite this week, according to local sources.
"They were getting northern on Sawyer Lake," said John Grier at Whispering Pines Outpost in Breitung Township. "There was also a guy who had some good luck with perch the other evening, a lot around 12 inches in length."
Don Ciochetto at The Sport Shop in Iron River said the sub-zero cold kept some fishermen away the latter part of the week.
"The guys going out are still hitting the northern and panfish pretty well," he said.
Ciochetto also mentioned that Iron County is holding a predator hunt this weekend.
Wax worms, suckers and fatheads were the big sellers this week, according to Dean Lindblom at Iron Mountain's Country Bait and Tackle.
"There were reports of 19.5-inch brook trout and splake out of Bass Lake," he said. "Northern and perch continue to bite on Lake Antoine, too."
Pattie Teske at Florence Sport and Bait said it was a slower week, but she did hear of some fishermen doing well on crappie using minnows.
The Michigan Department of Natural Resources reported the following fishing conditions across the Upper Peninsula:
Green Bay - The Bay itself had terrible ice conditions. A few anglers were set up inside the walls of the marina for trout and yellow perch, but no fish were caught. Cold weather this week should help with the making of new ice, but anglers will still need to use extreme caution.
Menominee River - Open water and pressure cracks were making for dangerous ice conditions. Anglers need to use caution. A few anglers were targeting panfish off the Menekaunee Access site but only a few small bluegills were caught.
Little Bay De Noc - Ice conditions worsened with the warm temperatures and rain. Anglers should avoid those areas near pressure cracks and the mouth of rivers as several vehicles have gone through the ice. The ice shifting near the pressure cracks has created some barriers.
Extreme caution needs to be used. Anglers were still heading out for walleye. Good numbers of fish were caught in the flats near Kipling however most were on the small side. Try rapalas or tip-ups with minnows in 25 to 35 feet of water. Perch action in 10 to 17 feet of water out from the Day's River and south towards Kipling. Anglers are jigging wigglers and minnows. Most anglers reported few catches however some large jumbos have been caught. Good pike spearing east of Butler Island in 10 feet of water on natural and artificial decoys.
Munuscong Bay - Was producing fair catch rates for walleye in shallow waters on the west end of the bay. The walleye were averaging 15 to 19 inches. Most were jigging minnows. Those targeting walleye have also caught some nice perch along with a few pike.