This is the time of year when many have either winterized the boat already or are getting ready to do so soon, and pulling the ice-fishing gear out of storage. Monday night there was a thunderstorm in these parts and that is just so wrong, and the memory of last winter’s absence of ice makes me worry that we’ll have a repeat this winter. So I’m holding off as long as possible on putting the boat up. Last year during the holidays I wished I still had it available to fish open water. Last winter I thought it was my fault for having bought a new shanty and power auger. If it happens again we can blame the guy who built that big permanent shanty in his backyard in Montague. Better hope for some deep cold, Matt, or you are on the hook for this one.
White Lake – Anglers continue to find some success with perch in the deep slot just south of the channel. Size has been small but patience will help put a bunch of very tasty filets on the table. Try wigglers or minnows. Water levels at the mouth of the White River remain extremely low, but a few are trolling stick-baits just south of the Whitehall marina. For the latest info on White Lake, call Johnson’s Great Outdoors at 231-893-6688.
White River – Last weekend’s rainy spell brought some much needed water into the system, and steelhead have moved up as a result. Spawn is effective and some are fly-fishing with egg imitations and reporting success.
Whitehall/Montague – Whitefish seem to be done. Steelhead are the target off the pier early and late in the day. This is also a good time of the year to try for walleye in the channel in the evening, husky jerks and countdown rapalas good choices.
Muskegon- No reports.
Muskegon River – Water levels were up a bit after the rain so a few more steelhead moved up. Catch rates are still spotty, however fish are being caught. Try a white jig with wax worms or floating spawn.
Grand Haven – A few steelhead are reported, but catch rates down.
Pentwater – Water remains low in the river so fishing has been tough.
Hamlin Lake – No reports. For up to date Hamlin information call Hamlin Grocery at 231-843-2058.
Ludington – Pier and surf anglers are catching steelhead. Try spawn, wax worms or body baits in the early morning or evening.
Pere Marquette River – May also have more steelhead that moved up into the river. Try floating spawn under a bobber or drifting egg flies.