Chance of snow for deer season

Outdoors Report

IRON MOUNTAIN — With colder weather expected to linger, there may be snow on the ground for the opening of Michigan’s firearm deer season Thursday.

The opening day forecast calls for a chance of snow with a high near 35.

“We’ve had a quite a few people in for licenses,” said John Grier at Whispering Pines Outpost in Breitung Township. Archery hunters have had some success, though it appears most trophy bucks are still out there, he said.

“Hunters are starting to see more bucks,” said Doug Whisler at Whisler Outdoors in Florence, Wis. “They’re starting to run around quite a bit.”

Wisconsin’s gun season opens Saturday, Nov. 17.

“The rut is on,” said Paul Hartrick, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources conservation warden in Oconto Falls. “Multiple bucks have been chasing does for the past two weeks from large bucks to the smaller ones.”

Sagola Township Sportsman’s Club will offer a sight-in day for hunters from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday. Hunters are invited to check their gun sights, do some warmups and get assistance at the club’s free range in Channing.

Fishing pressure has been light but a few musky anglers are still giving it a go, said Whisler. A 38-inch pike was landed on an eight-inch sucker minnow, he said.

Steelhead runs continue and anglers should find fish from now until freeze up, according to the Michigan DNR.

The following Upper Peninsula fishing activity was reported by the DNR:

Ontonagon River: Salmon and brown trout are present in the Middle Branch. Fish were seen north of M-28.

Falls River: Near L’Anse also had salmon and brown trout for those targeting them.

Little Bay De Noc: Walleye anglers reported fair action with the better catches for night anglers. Day anglers reported spotty catches throughout the Kipling reefs and south to the Escanaba in 18 to 38 feet with stick baits. Many reported large schools of bait fish throughout the area. Perch anglers reported very little as the waters are starting to turn over and were getting cloudy. Not a lot of smallmouth bass were caught but those found were some very large fish. Most were fishing from Hunters Point south to the Farmers Dock area with plastics or small crank baits in 12 to 20 feet. Water temperatures were hovering around the mid 40’s.

Two Hearted River: Water levels dropped to a more manageable level for steelhead fishing. A few anglers had some luck near the mouth. Some were surf-casting however north winds made it much more difficult.