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Outdoors report

Anglers enjoying good summer fishing; crappie, bass biting

July 30, 2011
The Daily News

IRON MOUNTAIN - Crappie and bass action highlights fishing reports in the Dickinson County area, while fly fishing has been good on trout streams in Iron County.

"Everybody's catching bass, no matter where they go," said John Grier at Whispering Pines Outpost in Breitung Township.

"Fishing has been good," he continued. "We've had some good reports on perch and bluegill and couple of guys have been getting their legal limit of walleye - they won't say where." Grier reports selling lots of crawlers, beavertails and leeches.

"Fishing is pretty good," echoed Patti Teske at Florence Sport & Bait. "They've been catching a lot of small walleye on the Brule (River) on worms," she noted. Bass are hitting on leeches and plastic worms, while crappies and bluegills are also biting, Teske added.

"Crappies are hitting pretty good right now," said Dean Lindblom at Country Bait & Tackle in Iron Mountain. Artificial baits and minnows seem to be working best, he said.

"The walleye are starting to hit on leeches now," Lindblom added. Northern pike and bass catches have also been good, with crawlers the typical bait.

At Midtown Bait & Tackle in Channing, Bob Kennard reports brisk sales of minnows. Edey Lake is a hotspot for crappies, Witch Lake has been good for bass and the Michigamme Reservoir offers most everything, he said.

Fly fishing is picking up on Iron County's trout waters, said Don Ciochetto at The Sport Shop in Iron River. Not many large fish are being caught, as most are in the range of 8-9 inches.

Tom Bean at Crystal Bait in Crystal Falls said a few muskies are starting to hit on top water baits.

"Walleye have been biting on leeches and minnows and they're catching some bluegills on worms and waxies," he said.

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

Copper Harbor: Splake have been caught on small minnows hooked through the nose so they can free swim. Strong winds have limited fishing on Lake Superior.

Keweenaw Bay: The bite has slowed for those trolling or jigging. Anglers are putting in a lot time to catch a coho or lake trout. Fish were caught in Traverse Bay when trolling for lake trout between Big Louie's and Gay Point as well as Five Mile and Seven Mile Reefs. Some caught fish near the Huron Islands when trolling in 90 to 180 feet of water.

Gratiot Lake: The walleye bite was good between 5 a.m. and 8 a.m. and again in the evening between 8 p.m. and 2 a.m. Some are slow trolling with crawlers with lindy rigs in 19 to 26 feet of water while others are still-fishing with minnows.

Marquette: Water temperatures 30 feet down were in the upper 40's. Lake trout fishing was scattered with only a few limit catches reported. Most were fishing toward Granite Island, Little Presque Isle or just north of the White Rocks. Jigging was slow with only a few fish caught 180 to 220 feet down north of the White Rocks and near the Sand Hole. Those fishing around Stannard Rock had good reports of lake trout averaging 8 to 15 pounds, with a few over 20 pounds.

Menominee: Had a large die-off of alewife between the port and the Ford River. Boat anglers are trolling for salmon near Chambers Island and Green Island but no fish were caught.

Menominee River: Is good for a mix of walleye, smallmouth bass, catfish, freshwater drum and rock bass. Water levels were down some so most anglers were drifting crawlers.

Little Bay De Noc: Walleye anglers fishing in the evening caught fish just off the mouth of the Escanaba River when trolling or drifting crawler harnesses in 12 to 20 feet of water. Fair catches were reported between Breezy Point and Round Island in 12 to 16 feet of water. Good perch fishing on the Second and Third Reefs when still-fishing with crawlers in 14 to 25 feet of water. Walleye and salmon anglers reported large numbers of alewife combined with a large mayfly hatch.

Big Bay De Noc: Had fair to good smallmouth bass fishing around Porcupine Point, Kates Bay, Ansell's Point and Garden Bluff when casting tube baits in 12 to 15 feet of water. Walleye anglers seem to be targeting the southern waters near Round Island. Anglers report a large number of alewife in this area. Fairport seems a bit slower than previous years however a good number of fish over 20 pounds have been harvested. Most were trolling 40 to 80 feet down in 70 to 100 feet of water in the "Gap." Try spoons or artificial cut bait.

Au Train: Catch rates were spotty as the lake trout were suspended 70 to 90 feet down in 160 to 180 feet of water. Most are using spoons and flies tipped with cut bait. No salmon or steelhead to report.

Munising: Fishing was slow and few anglers were out except for a couple targeting lake trout out near Wood Island. Pier and dock anglers did manage to catch splake.

Grand Marais: Pier fishing for whitefish is pretty much done with only a few smaller fish caught in the morning. More boats are heading out for lake trout. Fish were caught from the shipping channel to five or seven miles out in water 70 to 300 feet deep. Some limit catches were reported however the fish continue to run on the small side. Pike were caught by those trolling the shoreline. Coho were caught when trolling east and west just outside the bay.

Manistique: Chinook and steelhead were caught by those going out over 10 miles and fishing in waters 120 to 150 feet deep. On average, anglers were netting 0-3 fish per boat when trolling different size spoons with flies. Evenings were best.

Manistique River: Is producing a mix of pike, smallmouth bass, walleye, carp and freshwater drum. Fish have been caught from the mouth to the first dam. Those fishing from the docks are using crawlers and leeches while boat anglers are using spoons, crank baits or rapalas.

St. Mary's River: Some Atlantic salmon were caught at the powerhouse in Sault Ste. Marie. A few walleye were also caught in the channel near Munuscong Lake by those using a red crawler harness and bottom bouncer.

De Tour: Boats are targeting Atlantic and chinook salmon, rainbow trout and lake trout.

Cedarville and Hessel: Hessel remains excellent for pike while still-fishing with chubs or casting in 8 to 10 feet of water. Perch fishing in Hessel Bay and Snows Channel was good using minnows or crawlers in 8 to 12 feet of water.

St. Ignace: Boat anglers are catching chinook, steelhead and lake trout between the Coast Guard Station and the four tanks as well as the northeast and southeast corners of Mackinac Island.

 
 

 

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