Spring is trying to bust loose! Birds are chirping, days are getting longer and steelhead are in the river! What an awesome time of year! We have another year of fishing in front of us…spring steelhead, summer trout, fall salmon, steelhead & trout…what an amazing resource!!! The more I travel to fishing destinations, talk to fellow anglers and read articles of declining fisheries; it makes me appreciate and value our wonderful Pere Marquette River. It is an amazing wild and scenic river and fishery…we need to protect it for the next generations. If you would like to get involved in one of our conservation associations here are some links:
It feels really good to be back on the river daily. Our spring steelhead season is in full swing and marching forward. The river is low and clear at the moment with fish scattered throughout the entire system. It been a fun week of fishing with light fishing pressure. Having low water levels and fish throughout the system has spread out anglers. It is setting up to be another low water spring (not much snow and ice on the banks), but we will see what Mother Nature deals us? Water temps have been in the mid-30’s to upper-30’s. Only a couple fish have been jumping due to the colder water, but longer days and warmer weather will get them airborne.
The shop is loading up with inventory with more on the way. We are open seven days a week now. The guides schedules are pretty full, but there are still a some quality dates available…give a call to inquire if you need a guide trip…231-745-3529. We also have lodging available if you need a clean & quiet place to stay that is close to the river.
Fishing has been good (not great). We are getting bites/opportunities everyday, but cold and clear water adds to the challenge. Covering water and making each drift count will pay dividends. The fish have been in almost every type of water too…pools/runs, slow and deep to gravel pockets. Don’t be afraid to make a couple casts/drifts in the lumber. There are a few fish that have started spawning, but not many at all. Don’t worry, this is normal.
Good presentation has been the best technique. Fish with confidence and a stealthy approach. Light line, light weight, smaller floats and smaller flies will all contribute to your success. We have been deploying several techniques…floating lines with floats and C&D have been the most productive. Once the water warms up we can start stripping streamers too. Eggs have been getting the most attention. Fluffy clowns, small rag eggs and pale glow bugs in #8’s & #10’s…plus, 8 & 10mm beads in sections where legal (NOT the Fly Water). Smaller hexes, PM blondes and stone flies have been responsible for fooling a few fish as well. I have also heard a couple reports on swinging up some players, but the low clear water requires smaller natural colored patterns. Fish how you want to fish and have fun…catch one or ten; have fun and enjoy it!
I am looking forward to a great spring season! It’s great making new memories with friends & clients and having/meeting new guests in the boat. Please respect your fellow angler and treat them how you would like to be treated…isn’t that the golden rule? As spring gains momentum, we will be thinking about trout fishing a lot more. It’s never too early to book your May streamer trip or June dry fly trip…I actually have been seeing some small black stones already hatching on the warmer afternoons (no risers yet either). Enjoy! Have fun and please catch and release our wild PM steelhead.