Fishing Report

Early Spring Fishing (Apr-04-2011)

The 2011 fishing season is about to begin in Saugatuck. We are planning on getting the boat in some time this week and the report is that the fishing has been very good. People fishing off the pier have been doing very well with CoHo, Steelhead and Brown Trout hitting spawn and lures like Little Cleos. Trollers off the Saugatuck piers are also catching Brown Trout and CoHo using small stick baits, and small Hot n Tots pulled behing boards and small stinger lures on the down riggers and dipsy divers. If you are planning on trolling, I would troll south toward South Haven since the hottest fishing is in the southern part of Lake Michigan. St. Joe, Michigan City and the southern ports are reporting limit catches of CoHo but with the water warming the fishing should become more active to the north. I tried to contact the charter captains that are fishing the Kalamazoo and St. Joe Rivers for steelhead, however no one returned my calls. Reports are that they are catching steelhead in both rivers and the run has been much better than last year. If you want to try perch fishing, Fish On Bait Shop in Spring Lake reports that the perch bite is hot on the Grand River at the bridges. The best bait are minnows and leeches.

Steelhead in the Kalamazoo (Nov-09-2010)

Fishing in the Kalamazoo River is red hot right now with 5 to 8 steelhead being boated per trip. According to Tony Wolte of Frost Bite Charters, the water level is very low but the fishing is very good. The vast majority of the fish being caught are steelhead with an occasional chinook salmon or brown trout. The best method for the steelhead is either back-trolling small plugs through holes or bottom bouncing spawn in the holes. For more information about fishing trips or charter reservations for big lake fishing for next year, email me at captron@chartermichigan.com.

End of the fishing season (Oct-12-2010)

As of Monday, the 2010 fishing season was officially done for us and the boat is out of the water and in storage. The best description of the last 3 weeks was windy and rough, permitting us to run only 2 trips during this time period. When you can get out, the fishing is good to very good with lake trout (before Oct. 1) and 2 and 3 year old salmon and steelhead the last 2 weeks. Saturday we ran our last trip and the fishing was good with fish being caught in 130 to 180 foot of water, 30 to 60 foot down. There was a slick in 180 foot of water and most of our fish were caught inside the slick, however north of Holland the best fishing was from 180 to 200 foot of water. We pulled stinger and stingray lures on all of the lines except for a flasher and fly on the low divers. Stingers with green and orange (Orange Crush, Craigs Christmas and Reverse Christmas) on them or green and glow (Frog) produced well on the downriggers and sliders from 35 to 65 foot. Stingray spoons and Silver Green Pro Chip flasher and Last Supper fly did well on the low and high divers. What surprised me is the the 300, 200, 100 foot of copper and half core never had a hit and all the activity was on the riggers and divers. With the end of the season, I will be posting a fishing report about once a month rather than each week. I will try to update the reader on the fishing in the Kalamazoo River and in Lake Michigan as long as the weather and water conditions allow. For fishing information or to book next years fishing charter feel free to email me at captron@chartermichigan.com.

Switch from Lake Trout to Salmon (Oct-03-2010)

This week brought the closing of the Lake Trout season, forcing us to concentrate on salmon and steelhead. The first part of the week produced 12 to 20 lake trout per trip with an occasional salmon or steelhead in 80 to 90 foot of water. There were some reports of some 2 and 3 year old salmon being caught in 220 to 240 foot of water but the run of 4 year old salmon still had not started. Saturday we again got blown off the lake with gale force winds that continued into today. There were a couple of boats that fished the Kalamazoo River on Saturday and reported catching a few big 4 year old salmon, pulling Hot n Tots and Tadpollys. If the there are salmon in the river, there must be some in front the piers, however with the rough conditions, no one fished for them in the lake. Could it be that the run has finally begun? For more information, or to book a fishing charter email me at captron@chartermichigan.com.

Limits on Lake Trout but few Salmon (Sep-19-2010)

This past week again produced limit catches of Lake Trout, however the salmon were few and far between. The salmon that were caught hit 60 to 70 foot down but the lake trout hit off the bottom in 75 to 90 foot of water. The lake trout continue to be in the 12 to 20 pound range and the salmon are the 2 and 3 year old with the 4 year old chinook being absent. The down riggers and the dipsy divers were run on the bottom with Silver Horde Gold Star metal dodgers with spin n glows. This combination produced 17 fish by 8:30 (1 1/2 hours of fishing) this morning. Any salmon and steelhead that we caught, were caught on regular stinger lures (orange corey and reverse christmas) and glow Silver Horde plugs pulled on 200 and 300 foot of copper. I do not know where the 4 year old chinook salmon are, however the water in-front the piers is still in the mid 60 degrees and we do not see anything in this water. Grand Haven boats were catching small salmon and steelhead out in 260 to 300 foot of water. To get to this depth out of Saugatuck, we would have a 15 mile run and I have not talked to any one who has fished this depth here. Check back next week for an update or charter reservations or email me at captron@chartermichigan.com.