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I would like to start this report by thanking everyone that helped us with the River Clean-Up this past Saturday!  Both new and old faces joined the effort and we made a DIFFERENCE!!!  The river is a better place from M-37 to Walhalla.  We did not get everything, but we did get boat loads of trash out of the water, trees and off the banks.  It’s nice to know people still care and are willing to put in the “man hours” to improve and protect our amazing resource!  It was a huge success due to YOUR effort….THANK YOU!!!!

The more I read about dwindling salmon & steelhead returns out West, Alaska, the Eastern Great Lakes and even the Western Lake Michigan rivers…it’s up to us to protect the amazing Pere Marquette River!  There has been a dramatic increase of anglers on the PM over the last 5-7 years.  Let’s all try to do our part to protect and preserve this wild fishery…PLEASE catch and release our wild steelhead!!!

The river is a better place…Thank you everyone!!!

We have officially switched gears to steelhead and it feels great!!!  We are off to a good start with decent numbers of fish throughout the entire system.  But we really need some rain!  The fish are on the move daily and getting wised up.  The river is very low and CLEAR from top to bottom.  Which increases the challenge of angling for wild steelhead in the Pere Marquette River…they have the upper hand right now with slower flows and clear water.  They see the offering from further away and its drifting at a slower pace.  No-one said steel heading is easy; that’s way we love it!  You gotta’ earn it!

Arnie with a perfect specimen
Brendan getting it done! Well done buddy!

Presentation is the name of the game!  Presentation in all aspects; the drift, leaders & line, fly color/size, hook size, mends, proper weight, proper depth of your floats, physically approaching the pool/run, casting a shadow…you get the point.  But it all makes a difference in finding a player most days in low water.  Tread lightly and stay off the run as much as possible to increase your odds.  That is just my $0.02’s.  Also, please try your best to respect your fellow anglers as well…boats floating by bring in your lines, have a sit and drift thru the entire run with the least amount of disturbance.  Just a friendly reminder…that is the proper edict around here…it will be appreciated!

The egg bite has been the most productive approach for me lately.  Cream clowns, pale estaz nukes, clown rag eggs and small Oregon Cheese have been getting tied on frequently.  But the nymph bite should start picking up too.  I will start mixing in some stone flies, hexes, caddis and Pheasant tail type bugs.  Plus, once we get some rain/water the streamer game will improve.  I have done a little hardware fishing with decent results, but eggs and beads seem to be the way to go right now.  We do have a bead order coming into the shop next week, but we want to be clear…BEADS ARE NOT LEGAL IN THE FLY WATER!  We are also carrying a small selection of center pin rods/reels and gear to meet the demand of this popular steelhead fishing style…after all, we do sell bait and lures!

Our guides have been busy and looking forward to the next 6 weeks!  We will be welcoming Donnie Richards back today for his Steelhead Guiding stint with BBT…it’s going to be great to have the team back together again!  There are still some prime openings for guides and Motel rooms if you are interested in some steelhead fishing. My personal openings are: October 28 & 29  November 2, 4, 7, 14, 15, 17, 18, 22, 27 – 30.  Give us a call to make a reservation…231-745-3529.  First come, first served…we have “limited inventory” of fall steelhead fishing days…I wish November was 60 days long!

Charlie and I with a crazy steelhead…it was wild ride and I was lucky to get this one to the net.

It looks like we have some weather/rain in the extended forecast, so keep your fingers crossed.  It finally feels like fall with cooler mornings and a couple frosts.  But, there are still plenty of leaves on the trees.  The fall colors are great right now on the river. We are working for them and that’s how it should be…each wild steelhead is earned!  Here we go and good luck out there!!!