July 8, 2011
Trout fishing remains decent despite the inconsistent hatches which is typical for this time of year - we have had a few weeks of inconsistent weather and hatches to prepare us for it.
The Hex bugs continue to emerge and fall on the Upper Manistee and Boardman Rivers - they are just sometimes difficult to find as one day they are there, the next day not, returning the third day. The hatch has been off this year primarily because of the weather. The good news is that the bugs should trickle in the river systems for a few more days extending the season as I am still finding a number of nymphs in the silt beds. Other emerging bugs include yellow stones, little yellow sally stones, Isonychias, epeorus, light cahills, gray drakes and the tricos are just starting to get going in the mornings. This time of year there is a transition of fishing mayflies in the evenings to fishing terrestrials and attractors in the daytime: beetles, ants, hoppers, etc. are starting to get the attention of fish. It has been a while since we have had some rain so the rivers dropped significantly over the past week and they are running clear making the streamer fishing tough. With the grass growth on the river's edge you will find mice more active on the banks and fish a little more receptive to mouse patterns fished well into the dark.
The fishing in the bay is winding up which is typical for this time of year. There are still some carp in the bay spawning and the post spawn fish are eating a bit when they decide to come onto the flats. Look closely for smallmouth bass as they too are swimming accross the flats with both species taking lots of hex nymphs patterns as there is a lot of nymph activity in the bay right now. Other patterns include crayfish and clouser minnows and a few realistic looking hex dries should be in your fly box too.
Pond and lake fishing continues to offer good action for both bass and panfish. The fish are becoming very structure oriented in the day light and there is plenty of it with the recent weed growth. Some of the panfish are spawning again and they can be seen near nests in the shallows. Large sliders and poppers are taking bass on top with smaller ones working on the 'gills.
With the recent 4th of July weekend, there was no shortage of canoers and kayakers on the rivers resulting in a number of PBR and Mountain Dew Cans left on shore - please help return the river to a beautiful place - if you see some garbage consider picking it up - thanks!