Perch caught at Chicagoan, Antoine
IRON MOUNTAIN - Most local bait shops reported a quiet week of fishing, most likely due the sub-zero cold that lingered.
A forecasted warmup should get action going again.
"Had a report of a somebody doing well on perch on Chicagoan Lake and getting a couple of keeper walleye too," said John Grier at Whispering Pines Outpost. "Nice crappie were caught at Six Mile, and some perch were found in Lake Antoine. I imagine things will pick up now with the nice weather moving in."
Don Ciochetto at the Sport Shop in Iron River also mentioned a couple of nice walleye caught in the past week, but said most walleye fishermen were not doing much.
Bob Kennard at Midtown Bait and Tackle in Channing said 161 adults and 70 kids registered for the fishing contests during last Saturday's Tip-Up Town.
"Fishing went well," he said. "It's been slowing a bit since, but guys are still heading out to Sawyer and southern Marquette County."
Dean Lindblom at Country Bait and Tackle reported sparse fishing activity.
"The cold shut everything right off," he said. "There were still some perch and bluegill caught at Lake Antoine, though."
Pattie Teske at Florence Sport and Bait also said it was a rather slow week. She reminded anglers of a fishing derby taking place on Keyes Lake today until 6 p.m.
Michigan's Winter Free Fishing Weekend is scheduled for Saturday, Feb 19, and Sunday, Feb. 20.
Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment reported the following fishing conditions across the Upper Peninsula:
Keweenaw Bay - Coho and a few lake herring were caught out from the L'Anse Marina, just north of the Legion, off Sand Point and out from the Tribal Police Station. Try 8 to 15 feet down in 20 to 70 feet of water. Lake trout were caught out from Jentoft's and the Tribal Police Station when jigging in waters between 70 and 220 feet deep. Perch were caught near the Baraga Marina and the Whitefish Hole east of Baraga was producing a mix of lake trout and whitefish in 80 to 105 feet of water. On average, the bite was slow except for smelt hitting at night. Best times were 7-10pm and midnight until 2am.
Little Bay De Noc - Has pretty good ice conditions and just enough snow for easy access. Some reported problems when trying to cross the pressure cracks, especially near the Terrace Bay Inn. Extreme caution needs to be used. Catches were mixed but the best area was near Kipling where walleye and perch were taken by those jigging rapalas or minnows in 30 feet of water. Good numbers of jumbo perch were also reported. Fair to good walleye catches out from the Terrace Bay Inn and south to the Escanaba River when jigging rapalas or using tip-ups in 25 to 33 feet of water. Some reported good catches near Portage Point however this area is still dangerous and caution needs to be used. Some have marked and caught good numbers of smelt in this area when using shiners. Whitefish anglers are out in force near Sand Point. Most are jigging spawn or minnows in 70 to 90 feet of water.
Munising - Most anglers are concentrating on whitefish. Catch rates were fair when using a single egg in 50 to 80 feet of water. The size and number varies but most anglers were bringing in fish. Lake herring and splake were slow. Burbot have started to bite and are hitting in the early morning. Some lake trout were caught in deep water in the channels around Grand Island. Live bait is permitted in the waters around Pictured Rocks however anglers must retain proof by means of a receipt that they are fishing with certified bait, which means it is VHS free.
Indian Lake - Anglers with vehicles are getting stuck in snow drifts. Accessing the lake off Elm Street is not advised as the ice has shifted near shore and there is now a pool of water on top of the ice. Those trying to drive around it are creating very deep ruts, so lower vehicles are getting stuck. Those heading out on the northeast side of the lake should use Danielson's Landing. Someone was nice enough to plow the road which makes access much easier. On the northwest side, the launch in Lange's Bay is still a good place to access the lake however watch for deep snow. The pressure crack on the north end has opened up even more. On the south end, anglers were still crossing but caution needs to be used. Anglers should stay away from the mouth of the Indian River and use extreme caution near Silver Creek on the west side, Palm Springs area on the northwest side and north of the Lange's Bay launch where there are springs. A few perch were taken by those still-fishing or jigging with minnows. Those using tip-ups with bigger minnows were taking a few walleye and pike. Best time to fish was at dusk or just after dark.
Munuscong Bay - Walleye catches have slowed considerably as the fish remain scattered in waters up to 30 feet deep.