Our warmer weather has stabilized water temperatures and the fall Steelhead are still fighting with all that they have. Last week’s rain has come and gone bringing in fresh fish – just not in huge numbers. Water levels are good but clarity is very clear – those using fluorocarbon will do better fooling fish than those who don’t. Eggs are the primary choice of flies – big, small, natural and bright. The nymph bite is starting to improve: steelhead buggers, hex nymphs and caddis are a bit typical, but proven. If fishing the Manistee at the dam, use smaller nymphs and very small eggs for your best chance. Those looking to swing flies will find the temps are ideal and there are fish in the river to play along.
The Betsie is still running low and clear and the timing of steelhead will depend strictly on weather. All of our local rivers are dependent on both wind direction on the lake and rain to bring the levels up. Looking ahead at the forecast, we should have more fish in our rivers this fall.
The trout fishing on the Upper Manistee River should find the last of the Brown Trout spawning and fish eager to eat after completing their rigorous task. You will find the water very low and clear so use stealth while fishing. Because of the warmer weather, tie on some terrestrials and see what comes up including beetles, ants and even a smaller attractor.
The Northern Angler