Friday, October 8, 2010

Rain Rain Come Back

In all my years of fishing the big rivers in Michigan I have never seen the Grand River here in Grand Rapids as low as it is now. Ive taken a couple trips down to the river and the creeks this week and found only a few fish. We desperately need rain. There are only fair numbers of fish up at the dam at sixth street and a few steelhead have been caught on clown eggs and caddis and a few browns on spawn and crawlers. the kings are there and spawning but need rain to get, what will probably be the last push of fish up the river and the scent of the creeks in the river for the push into the smaller creeks. Those of you that dont like the crowds should look for the next rainfall of a substantial amount and hit the little creeks, Buck and Plaster, for the kings and browns. Remember that these creeks close for browns on september 30th so be a sportsmen and throw them back.
Tight lines

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Bad Weekend

So yea went to Tippy on Saturday, bad idea. Had to walk down to sawdust hole to find a spot to fish and even then it was still elbow to elbow people. I seen a few kings caught and there is a lot of them in the river. The browns were hitting on streamers and spoons but didn't see any steel come out. Broke my rod early in the day so yea it does happen to the best of us. Thank god it wasn't the fly rod. Oh well, in the upcoming weeks the crowds will die of then its time for the big browns. See ya on the river.
Tight Lines

Sunday, September 26, 2010

First Guide Trip on Pine River

Ok so I am not a pro guide but I still have a few people that call me for a guide trip because they know me and my skill. This Saturday I took some of those people on the Pine. We had a great time. This was the last weekend open on the Pine since it closes on the 30th and boy what a weird day. The weather was rain then sun then rain then sun and so on all day. The fish were not as active as I was hoping but we still got a few. Minnow imitations were the best, either silver shiner or gold shiner always works best.

The fact of the matter is, they called me and I told them I would do my best to put them on some nice fish. This I did. Above is Frank with a beautiful Male hook jaw that measured out at 24 inches. It took a 3 inch golden shiner pattern that was thrown up in the slow water of a curve in the river. As you can see it is on a stringer, but after much debate between the group on whether or not to take it back to the cabin and cook it for dinner or release it, Frank made a very sportsmen like decision to let it go back in the river to be caught another day. It will always be a trophy because we got pictures. Great job Frank.

Tight Lines

Sunday, September 19, 2010


Ok so I do have a passion for fly-fishing however never had the money to get the good stuff till this past summer. I ended up going with the Orvis Clearwater II 9' 8wt.. I decided to put the Battenkill Mid Arbor Trout reel from Orvis on it and I have two spools for it, one with Orvis wt f 8 Clearwater, and one whith Orvis wf f 8 Streamer Stripper line. I absolutively love the streamer line. The catch of all this is that up until yesterday I never got a trout during the practice of fly-fishing. Ive gotten trout every other way but not fly-fishing. Gotten them on flies attached to a spinning rig but not fly-fishing.

 All this has now changed. I now have gotten two trout in one day on the new setup. Here is one...

This beautiful Pine River brown had swiped at my gold and orange deep water streamer twice. You know the outcome of the second time it swiped. So all and all I am pretty happy to say that I've caught trout every way there is, legal ways of course.

The fishing report is very good for this weekend. The fish are biting in the Pine, Manistee, and Bear creek. Alot of people out there on the main salmon rivers but there isn't anyone on the trout steams so plan a day and get out there and get some beautiful browns. This is the time to do it. Only 11 more days to hunt for the big browns. See ya next week. Tight Lines.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Its Fishing!!!

Friday the 10th I went to Tippy Dam on the south side. The Coho’s are in but the ones that are there are small. The size limit is 15in and I think the one that I kept was about 17in. I threw back 3 that were about the same size. One little steelie about 16in, and a bunch of little browns. I tried my version of the Fragle Rock streamer for salmon, however didn’t get a strike. Spays and black caddis were the ticket for the browns and live crawlers for the cohos.

Saturday the 11th went downstream from where I was yesterday and saw quite a few large Kings surface. The rain was relentless. At times I couldn’t even see the gravel 4 ft in front of me, it was raining so hard. No steelies or salmon on the flies and the browns switched up to the crawlers. Caught maybe a dozen that were about 14in but no 15+ for dinner tonight.

Ok so the last day up north till next weekend, Sunday the 12th. Went to High Bridge and boy it was warm. The water temp is still a little high for the salmon to run up the river but the smallmouth fishing is awesome. I had 3 on with a Clousers Deep Water gold and orange streamer. Didn’t land any though but it was still fun. On the crawler front, there is still a lot of suckers in the river downstream from the dam. They are the ones going for crawlers at this time. All and all a pretty decent weekend, could of gotten more fish to the net but that’s fishin’.  Time for some in town fishin’ to start we’ll see what the reports are and see if we cant get some time on the water this week.

Tight Lines.

Friday, September 10, 2010

A little History

So here it is. A little history on the Pine River, located in the Manistee River watershed. This is but a small portion, if you want the hole story you will have to buy my book, “Michigan’s Natural Beauty” book 1, coming out in 2012.

By 1830, the Government Land Office survey of Michigan had begun, creating the township, range, and section system we now have. Prior to this time, the watershed was still relatively undeveloped by non-natives. In 1837 came statehood for Michigan and in 1840, the creation of counties as we know them today.
The areas around the Pine were not logged until after 1870 because the Manistee River was choked with log jams. The onset of the logging era began what may have been the greatest human influence on the river system. Large scale removal of logs changed fisheries and wildlife habitat and the very character of the area. The loggers not only removed numerous log jams and large woody debris from the river channel, they rolled logs down the banks (the “rollways”) and drove them to market in spring. Without trees to stabilize the exceptionally sandy soils in the area, huge amounts of sediment entered the river. Although erosion and sediment transport are natural functions in a stream environment, such a massive artificial influx of additional sediment often overwhelms the natural stream process. Once in the stream, the increased sediment load begins to affect the aquatic environment. Stream temps rise, and fish lose valuable habitat for feeding, resting, and spawning.
From the early 1840’s to 1940, the life styles of the Native American people, and thus their influence on the river system, underwent several changes due in part to the increased presence in non-native’s. After the 1855 Treaty of Detroit, Ottawa’s formed new permanent agricultural settlements south of the watershed. By the late 1870’s, many Ottawa’s had sold or lost title to their lands, and migrated to the outskirts of newly formed towns or more isolated areas, still relying on the natural resources of the area to earn a living. From the 1890’s to 1940, Indian Village in Brown Township on the Manistee River served as the center of the traditional Little River band of Ottawa’s gathering, fishing, and trapping economy.
In 1900, the Manistee River was proclaimed Michigan’s last great “un-harnessed” river, capable of producing 40,000 horse-power of electricity. Stronach Dam on the Pine River was the first hydroelectric dam on the system, being completed in 1912. Stronach Dam originally supplied power to the city of Manistee.

The Michigan Railway Company acquired the project around 1915, with the intention of supplying power to a proposed electric railway. Consumers Power Company acquired the project in 1917 after the electric railway plans were abandoned and operated the plant until July 8, 1953. Tippy Dam was completed and began producing power in 1918. Tippy Dam was then called Junction Dam, being at the confluence of the mainstream and South Branch Manistee, as the Pine River was formerly called.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

What this is all about!!!

I've created this blog for the general fisherman here in Michigan. I am an avid fly-fisher however I do get out the spinning reels and ultra-light rods for bass and bluegill and the 10ft steelhead rods for fun with pike and musky along with salmon and steelhead. I felt that we as Michigan fishermen don't always go just for trout, or just for bass. Michigan has such a variety that accommodates so many people, why not put it all in one place.

In the future posts I will be giving it my all to bring you all the conditions and everything that will affect the fishing here in our beautiful state. I am however going to be mostly on the western side of the lower peninsula i.e. Grand Rapids, Newago, White Cloud, Baldwin, Wellston, Kaleva, Manistee, Muskegon, and so on. I hope you get the feeling of passion I have for the sport while reading my blog as I do everyday, whether I'm on the river or in the shanty, at the vice or watching the rain, the passion is always there. In the future I will get into a little bit of the history of some of my favorite rivers in the state, the Pine near Wellston and the Manistee.