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HomeOutdoorsWeekly fishing report: July 6, 2022

Weekly fishing report: July 6, 2022

walleye fishing
Photo credit: Michigan Department of Natural Resources

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Tawas: There were a few coho salmon, lake trout and steelhead caught out past buoy 2 in 60 to 80 feet of water while trolling spoons and body baits. Some limits of walleye were caught north and west of the Charity Islands in 12 to 20 feet while trolling crawlers and flicker shad. A few walleye were also caught near buoys 4 & 6 while trolling crawlers near the weed beds in 10 to 15 feet of water. At Gateway Park on the Tawas River, there were some largemouth bass caught while casting spinners, body baits and plastics. A few catfish and freshwater drum were caught while still fishing crawlers. On the pier at the State Harbor, there were some rock bass and smallmouth bass caught while casting body baits, plastics and spinners.

Houghton Lake: Anglers were catching crappie, bluegill and smallmouth bass. Good colors to use were gold, purple and fire tiger. Anglers were catching walleye on crawlers and leeches.

Alpena: Lake trout fishing was steady with limits reported. Best places to fish were at Thunder Bay Island, Nordmeer Wreck and the first set of humps. The best depths were in 60 to 90 feet of water. Anglers were running a couple of lines deep while scattering their other lines up higher. Some silver fish were caught on the higher lines. An occasional steelhead, pink salmon, coho, Atlantic and Chinook were caught on the lines higher in the water column. Spoons worked well for the silver fish. Good colors have been greens, orange and silver, orange, blues, and glow stuff early and late. The lake trout were coming in on flashers with spin glo flies. Walleye fishing was still on the slow side because of cold water. A few walleye were caught in the very southern part of the bay near Sulphur Island and Scarecrow Island. The best depths were in 15 to 30 feet of water. Anglers were using harnesses and crankbaits. 

Thunder Bay River: Anglers were fishing with live bait and/or casting with an assortment of spinners, spoons and body baits. They were catching smallmouth bass, rock bass, freshwater drum, catfish, bowfin and pike. The walleye was slow. 

Au Gres: Anglers reported limit catches of walleye. The best fishing was out east and north of the Charity Islands in 12 to 20 feet while trolling crawlers and flicker shad. There were also some good catches of walleye near Point Au Gres and south towards the shipwreck and all the way down near the Saganing bar in 10 to 25 feet while trolling crawlers and flicker shad. At the Pine River Access, there were a few pike, largemouth bass and crappie caught while casting spinners, body baits and still fishing minnows.

Rogers City: The fishing pressure was light. Anglers were catching some lake trout with some limits reported. A mixed bag was starting to show up in angler catches.  Mostly lake trout with an occasional silver fish, Atlantic salmon, coho salmon, Chinook salmon and steelhead. The best depths were in 60 to 95 feet of water. The lake trout were coming near the bottom with flashers and spin glos. The silver fish were coming higher in the water column mostly on spoons. Good colors were greens, oranges, orange and silver, blue and silver, orange green and silver, glow stuff – early and late. A few anglers tried a flasher with fly or squid. The fish were scattered due to the wind.  Once anglers caught one fish, anglers were turning back on the spot where they were catching fish and having success that way. Good places were structured areas, Seagull Point, 40 Mile Point and Adams Point.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Ludington: A few Chinook and coho were caught at Big Sable Point and straight out in 100 to 150 feet of water when fishing 60 to 80 feet down, but depths varied. Spoons and flies worked. The piers remained slow.

Manistee: Catches were hit or miss but a few salmon, lake trout and steelhead were caught along the shelf both north and south of town, and south towards Big Sable Point. Depths ranged from 115 to 135 feet of water while fishing 60 to 80 feet down; a few were also caught in 250+ feet of water. Green, blue and orange spoons and flies worked. Pier fishing remained slow.

Frankfort: Chinook salmon were reported off the bank in 150 to 200 feet of water with anglers working the top 40 to 80 down on spoons, flies and meat rigs. The early morning and late evening bites were producing good numbers of a range of sizes. Lake trout were also reported in the same areas.

Onekama: Chinook salmon numbers in and around the barrel and off the golf course were picking up as anglers reported alewife numbers still strong.

Portage Lake: Water temperatures were on the rise, so anglers were working the drops and deeper waters. Perch anglers were reporting high numbers of little fish with occasional keepers.

Upper Peninsula

Little Bay de Noc: The walleye fishing slowed down, but anglers continued to see limited success. Anglers were trolling the reefs and the head of the bay and reported small fish being caught. Anglers were also fishing Breezy Point and were catching some larger fish. Those venturing out of the Ford River were having good results. Smallmouth bass fishing was good. Shorelines with weeds or areas with rocks were producing fish.

Manistique: Anglers that were targeting walleye were having limited success in the river or at the mouth, drifting crawlers or trolling crank baits. Salmon fishing was poor, and anglers reported only marking bait and a few fish. Lake trout were caught in small numbers.

Keweenaw Bay/Huron Bay: Anglers mostly found lake trout with rainbow trout, Chinook salmon and coho being reported but infrequently. Anglers were mostly fishing in the morning hours. All fish reported were caught using artificial baits in waters ranging from 70 to 150 feet of water. Fish were found throughout the water column in these depths. Anglers should continue fishing in the morning hours and keep imitating smelt with the baits used.

Traverse Bays/ South Portage Canal Entry: Anglers reported less bait fish throughout the water column. Where they were seeing smaller fish, they were also seeing their target species. Most anglers were targeting trout and salmon with only a handful fishing for pike and bass. Anglers had the most luck trolling for trout and salmon with the main catch in the area being lake trout with some Chinook salmon and brown trout being caught as well. Anglers reported most catches coming from depths of 50 to 175 feet of water and fishing throughout the water column. Anglers fishing in the morning hours had the most success.

Les Cheneaux: In Les Cheneaux area, anglers were catching a few perch off the pier and were still catching splake within Wilderness Bay.

Detour: Anglers reported a nice mixed bag catch with fair success targeting Atlantic salmon off the flats and around the Detour lighthouse. Anglers were targeting these fish 10 to 20 feet below the surface over 60 to 100 feet of water. Anglers reported catches of lake trout from 2 to 5 pounds in these similar areas while fishing closer to bottom. There were also scattered catch reports of steelhead, coho salmon and some Chinook.

Marquette: Fishing picked up and anglers were catching fish in the Marquette area. Lake trout were reported being caught offshore near the Chocolay River through Shot Point. Anglers were catching some coho near Shot Point in about 40 to 50 feet of water. White Rocks was a popular spot where anglers were catching lake trout. While fishing near lower harbor, the Chocolay River and Shot Point, try trolling bright colored spoons on deep lines for lake trout and high lines for salmon. For fishing in the upper harbor area and White Rocks, try trolling multi color spoons or flickers in deep water for best chances.

Au Train: Anglers should try trolling or jigging cut bait near Au Train Island or try trolling bright color spoons in deep water (150+ feet) for lake trout. When fishing deep water for lake trout, try light blue or any bright color spoon while trolling.

Upper St. Mary’s: Whitefish fishing remained steady upriver of the Soo Locks. Anglers were reporting small-sized whitefish and menominee while jigging with wax worms 3 to 5 feet above the bottom of the river. Some anglers were targeting rainbow trout and reported limited catches using crawlers. In Waishkey Bay, some walleye were reported with slow catch rates. Crawler harness setups while trolling in the early morning or late evening produced results.

Lower St. Mary’s River: Anglers were reporting moderate success for those just starting to target cisco. The most popular spots so far were in Potagannissing Bay off of Drummond Island near Harbor Island. Anglers were using small jigs tipped with either mayflies or wax worms.

Whitefish Bay: Fishing in Whitefish Bay produced some results of Chinook, coho and whitefish. Fishing in 100 to 125 feet at 25 to 75 feet produced the best results. Multiple anglers reported seeing limited to no fish on sonar, however, still catching fish midway throughout the water column. At Tahquamenon River mouth access, anglers were targeting walleye, perch, pike and coho. Catches of walleye and pike were limited.

Southeast Lower Peninsula

Lake Erie: Walleye fishing was slow. Anglers were going to the same places with the same gear and only about half were coming back successful with full limits with the other half getting half limits or less. Anglers that were getting them were still going three miles straight out from Fermi in 19 to 21 feet using suspended crawler harnesses off the bottom about four feet. Pink and silver, and reds remained good colors for the harness blades. Another spot that showed a bit of promise was four and a half miles out from Luna Pier where walleye were hitting on purple or orange flicker shad lures. A few anglers were targeting yellow perch with mild to low success using minnow rigs in about 15 feet of water. Bass fishing for largemouth and smallmouth bass was good on artificial lure bass rigs closer to shore.

Detroit River: The walleye fishing was best in the Trenton Channel by the steel mill and between the steel mill in Ecorse and the Delray launch. Chartreuse was the hot color and some anglers switched it up and went back to jigging with fair success. The fish continued to stay in the 40-feet range. Decent catches of white bass were reported by the Delray launch.

Lake St. Clair: Smallmouth bass and muskie fishing was good. Some anglers reported catches of walleye on structure and in the channels. Anglers were catching smallmouth on tubes. Perch were biting in the weeds and close to shore. Anglers reported that there was a mayfly hatch.    

Saginaw Bay: Walleye were caught six miles east of the Sparkplug in 20 feet of water on crawlers. Walleye were also caught four miles west of the Sparkplug in 18 to 22 feet of water and at Callahan Reef in 12 feet of water on crawlers. At Smith Park in Essexville, shore anglers were using crawlers to catch smallmouth bass and channel catfish. Fishing for walleye continued to be good on the east side of the bay. Fish were starting to scatter and were caught from 6 feet and out to 35+ feet of water. Anglers were still catching walleye in the slot from 12 to 14 feet and also around 17 and 18 feet. Some anglers were starting to head out deeper and target 20 to 24 feet out over the bar. Walleye were caught between Sand Point and Caseville in 20 to 25 feet, off Oak Point in 30 to 35 feet, and also out around the Charity Islands. Crawlers and body baits were both producing well.

Sebewaing: Anglers reported good to excellent walleye fishing. Limits of walleye were common. Good places included the slot in 13 to 15 feet of water, north side of the bar in 20 to 23 feet of water and at buoy #1 in 26 feet of water. Both night crawler harnesses and body baits were catching fish. Good colors were purple, white and blue.

Harbor Beach: Anglers were trolling with downriggers, flashers and spoons. Some walleye were showing up in 25 to 35 feet trolling with crawler harnesses and artificial lures.

Port Austin: Walleye were caught in 20 to 30 feet of water. Crawler harnesses seemed to work best. Anglers were fishing west toward Caseville, but some were caught closer to the harbor.

Port Sanilac: A few lake trout were caught east and northeast of the harbor while trolling with lead core and downriggers with spoons in 80 to 100 feet and 40 to 60 feet down.

Lexington: Perch were caught 3 to 10 miles south from the harbor in 18 to 25 feet of water while still fishing with minnows.

Southwest Lower Peninsula

St. Joseph: Salmon fishing was very spotty. A few boats were doing well but overall things were on the slow side. There were some fish in 90 feet of water but most of the fish were caught significantly deeper than 100 feet of water. Spin Doctors and flies were doing very well. Pier fishing was still pretty good for catfish and freshwater drum. Steelhead fishing from the pier was very slow. Perch fishing was inconsistent. There were fish caught both north and south of the piers. The best water seemed to be in 30 to 40 feet of water. The fish were very tightly packed together. 

South Haven: Salmon fishing for boat anglers remained on the slow side. There were a few lake trout and coho caught but fishing was slow. The most productive water was well beyond 100 feet of water. Pier fishing was slow. Perch anglers were finding a few fish. The fish seemed to be scattered both north and south of the piers. Fish were caught from 70 feet of water to as shallow as 30 feet of water. Overall fishing pressure was low.

This report is intended to give you an idea of what is going on around the state. Updates come from Fisheries staff and conservation officers. With more than 11,000 inland lakes, the Great Lakes and thousands of miles of rivers and streams, not all locations can be listed. However, it is safe to say if a species is being caught in some waters in the area, they are likely being caught in all waters in that section of the state that have that species.

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