The recent cold front has a lot of anglers thinking about the fall fishing but we still have some summer fishing left – the calendar and forecast confirms this.
Water conditions for local trout rivers are in fine shape with temps around 60 on the upper Manistee and Boardman rivers making wet-wading, well, tricky or uncomfortable when in waist deep water. The recent rains haven’t effected levels too much but rather freshened them up so to speak. With the over-cast conditions fish have been out and on the prowl making for improved streamer fishing conditions when not casting surface flies. Try fishing smaller weighted streamers on floating lines and/or short sink-tips.
Very few bugs have been on the water other than Tricos in mid-mornings when temps are normal which is what we should have later this week and next. On the windy days don’t look for the Tricos to be on the water as the wind keeps them from landing however, these windy conditions make for better terrestrial fishing as hoppers and other land-based insects find themselves on the water. It’s the time of year for “foam and rubber” terrestrial and attractor patterns. Some days the fish want movement in those flies, other days dead drift with an occasional twitch so mix it up.
Bass and bluegill fishing is still going strong on the local lakes but the bigger bass are getting wise to our program of poppers and diving bugs. Like the trout fishing, the cloudy days seem to be better and the best fishing has been near structure including weeds, fallen trees and drop-offs.
The winds of the past few days have mixed up the water on Lake Michigan and some salmon have moved closer to shore with just a few making it up the tributaries as we approach September. Salmon reports on the big lake have been mixed so there aren’t many predictions on what the fall run of fish will be like on local rivers, but we should have a better idea in mid-September.