Anglers catching walleye, pike, crappie

Outdoors Report

IRON MOUNTAIN — Anglers are reporting some success landing walleye, as well as crappie, northern pike and even musky.

At Whisler Outdoors in Florence, Wis., Fay Whisler recommended trolling leeches or crawlers for walleye and casting spinners near weed edges for pike. Crappie — some better than 14 inches — have been caught on small jigs or bobbers with minnows, she said.

“Musky are chasing bucktails over weed beds,” Whisler added. Catches were in the range of 36 to 40 inches.

At Whispering Pines Outpost in Breitung Township, John Grier said the biggest catch of the week was a 50-pound snapping turtle, snagged inadvertently from the Menominee River and released.

Michigan antlerless deer application are now on sale, Grier reminded hunters.

Far to the south, Lake Michigan anglers were limiting out on rainbow trout and chinook salmon near Kewaunee, Wis., said Aeden White, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources fisheries technician at Sturgeon Bay.

The Michigan DNR reported the following Upper Peninsula activity:

Little Bay De Noc: Walleye anglers reported fair catches at best. High numbers of undersize fish are still being reported throughout the Bay with the southern most part being best for the bigger fish. Anglers trolled crawlers or stick baits in 14 to 18 feet off Breezy Point, south of the Ford River near Round Island in 10 to 20 feet and along the “Black Bottom” in 18 to 25 feet. Perch fishing was fair to good with crawlers in 20 to 28 feet in the Gladstone Beach area. The smallmouth bite was good near Garth Point, Hunters Point, between Aronson Island and Portage Point and the mouth of the Escanaba River with plastics or crank baits in eight to 14 feet. Good size salmon were caught south near St. Martins Island with spoons 45 to 60 feet down in 105 to 130 feet.

Big Bay De Noc: Had lots of smallmouth anglers. Nahma was best with good catches of large fish taken in 12 to 18 feet off the golf course and north of the launch along the weeds in eight feet with plastics, crank baits or spinners. Garden Bay, Kates Bay and Puffy Bay all reported good catches in 18 to 20 feet. Ogontz reported lots of fish but most were smaller. Several large northern pike were caught off Ansell’s Point when trolling crank baits in 17 to 22 feet. Off Fairport, there seems to be fewer salmon but the fish caught were bigger overall. Try 40 to 60 feet down in 105 to 130 feet near St. Martins Island and in the “Gap”.

Marquette: Surface water temperatures warmed into the low to mid 60’s. A fair number of lake trout were caught by those trolling around Granite Island and the “white rocks”. The fish were two to five pounds and seem to be scattered throughout the water column so anglers are using downriggers, dipsey divers and high-lines. The odd coho was caught but very few Chinook have come in.

Au Train: Many boats were only getting a few coho and lake trout per trip. Most were trolling spoons along the east side of Au Train Island or near Laughing Fish Point in 160 feet. Run lines at various depths.

Munising: Boat anglers continue to catch lake trout off the edge of Wood Island Reef in 150 to 160 feet, from the Grand Portal Reef east of Grand Island and towards Twelve Mile Beach. The fish are feeding on smelt. Anglers are using assorted spoons and flies tipped with cut bait. Those trolling high-lines with dipsey divers caught the occasional coho or Chinook. Surface water temperatures were in the upper 50’s.

Manistique Lake: Anglers were getting some walleye on the big lake.