As July comes to an end, the Trico and Terrestrial fishing for trout is going strong on the Manistee and Boardman rivers. The small Tricos have been keeping the trout active in most mid-mornings as both duns and spinners are on the water’s surface. While most of the fish taking notice are small brookies and browns, some bigger fish have surprised us. Consider fishing a smaller terrestrial fly pattern as an indicator with some 6x tied to the bend and a small trico pattern on the other end. This is a great time to use that 3 or 4 weight rod sitting in your rod closet.
Terrestrial fishing has been improving with the better fishing on cloudy or overcast days. Twitch, pop and skitter “foam and rubber” patterns to elicit somebody to come up to the surface. Mix up the pattern, size and color to see if there is a daily preference. This is also a good time of the year to fish small 2-3″ streamers on floating lines.
Bass fishing on lakes and ponds remains good for those who can cast a big popper or slider. The lily pads located near drops offer a great place for your flies as you wait for their ambush. Too often anglers rush the retrieve – try waiting at least 15 seconds after the cast before putting any action in the fly.
Bluegill fishing has been fishing better than usual for this time of year. Some bigger gills have been playing along with the smaller gills which are perfect for anglers looking to learn how to fish. Sometimes the bass eat the bluegill on your line, too, so hold on to that rod
Smallmouth bass fishing in the lower Manistee River is decent for those looking to cast streamers on both sink-tips and floating lines. Crayfish patterns around rocky edges/drops are always a safe bet as are baitfish patterns. In slack water, try fishing a popper lightly twitched. While not for a beginner, this fishing is a fun way to spend a summer day and work on skills while catching fish.