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Outdoors report

Trout opener today in Michigan

April 30, 2011
The Daily News

IRON MOUNTAIN Today marks the opening day of trout season on the Type 1 and Type 2 streams in Michigan.

Water levels in creeks and rivers vary in Iron and Dickinson counties.

"It should be a fairly nice opener," Don Ciochetto at the Sport Shop in Iron River said. "Water is down a little bit."

Ciochetto also said ice is now completely gone from lakes, and anglers are beginning to panfish.

Fishermen were headed out on Lake Antoine once the weather cleared toward the end of this week, according to Dean Lindblom's Country Bait and Tackle.

John Grier at Whispering Pines Outpost said anglers were buying fatheads and worms the past couple of days. Grier reports really high water in some locations.

"It ought to be an interesting (trout) opener," he said.

River fishermen were still catching a few walleye, according to Pattie Teske at Florence Sport and Bait.

"Nobody is panfishing quite yet," she added, mentioning that Wisconsin's trout opener is next weekend.

Tom Bean at Crystal Bait reported a few anglers targeting perch. He said some creeks were a little high, but lake levels appear to be closer to normal for this time of year.

Walleye, pike and muskellunge seasons open May 15 in the Upper Peninsula. Possession season for bass opens May 28 statewide, except for Lake St. Clair and connecting waters.

Anglers are reminded that a new license season began April 1.

Trout anglers should check the 2011 Michigan Fishing Guide as a number of regulations have changed. Most significantly, new gear restriction regulations have been placed on approximately 80 miles of trout streams in the northern Lower Peninsula and the Upper Peninsula.

For more information, or to view the 2011 Michigan Fishing Guide online, visit the DNR website at

Turkey hunters continue to have success. Ciochetto said there were a couple of big turkeys taken this week in Iron County.

Michigan Department of Natural Resources reported the following fishing conditions across the Upper Peninsula:

Keweenaw Bay: Had good coho action for those trolling body baits, spoons or dodgers with flies. Anything with orange was the hot bait and some limit catches were reported. Chinook, steelhead and brown trout were also caught. Those fishing off the rock pier in L'Anse also caught coho and trout. Smelt were caught in some area rivers.

Fall's River: The steelhead bite has been hit-or-miss, but a few fish have been caught everyday. Water levels are up but the river is fishable.

Marquette: Catch rates have been scattered. A couple nice steelhead were taken in the Lower Harbor near the Chocolay River. Splake and whitefish were caught off the coal docks when using a single egg. Shore anglers targeting coho caught no fish. Those trolling for lake trout caught no fish but those jigging in 130 feet of water near the White Rocks did. Water temperatures remain in the 30's.

Menominee: Boat anglers are fishing just off the mouth of the river and beyond the breakwalls. Catch rates for perch were fair when jigging minnows.

Menominee River: Shore anglers and those wading are catching walleye and suckers from Stephenson Island upstream to the Hattie Street Dam. Most are casting crank baits and rapalas but a few were drifting yarn for trout with no success. Catch rates for walleye were good near Stephenson Island and fair to good upstream from the island. Lots of shore anglers on both sides of the river.

Little Bay De Noc: Water temperatures are still very cold from 36 to 40 degrees in both bays. Perch anglers are fishing the Narrows but catch rates were slow. Try jigging minnows in 20 to 30 feet of water.

Whitefish River: Is producing good numbers of steelhead.

Day's River: Had good steelhead fishing between U.S. 2 and the golf course. Several anglers pursued perch at the mouth but catch rates were spotty.



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