Shop Hours – 8am to 6pm Monday thru Thursday & 7am to 6pm Friday, Saturday & Sunday

March is here and we are busy chasing steelhead on the Pere Marquette River!!!  It feels great to have the season in full swing.  The shop is loaded up with flies, beads, lures, rods/reels and everything in between.  We are still looking for some additional shop employees, so if you or someone you know might be interested give us a call…231-745-3529.

Lots of skippers this year

We finally received a good shot of rain and it bumped up the river level.  It was LONG over-due and well received!  Great to have some color in the water and some flow again.  It won’t last long, but we are enjoying it while it lasts.  There are fish throughout the system, but still a long way from peak.  The fall and winter fish are long gone with the mild winter.  The extended forecast looks promising for weather and temps.  Only time will tell what kind of run spring 2024 will be?  The fall run was slim.  Hopefully, we’ll make up for it this spring.

Gary getting it done at the first stop!!!
Bill got a couple nice hens to the boat!

It seems like we are a little ahead of schedule for early March.  There are plenty of salmon fry already, black stoneflies popping on the warmer afternoons and spotted the first few robins before March.  With that being said, the fry and stone bite has been very good!  Eggs patterns in pale creams and clowns have been getting some attention as well.  Try matching the size of your patterns to the water level/clarity.  Bead fishing the lower river has been up and down.  8mm to 12mm have been the size range and natural to bright “attention grabbers” in dirty water.  (Just a friendly reminder….Beads are NOT LEGAL in the Flies Only Section).

Our guide schedules are pretty full until Mid-April, but there are a couple random dates open still.  Plus, we have availability for Lodging at our Motel.  Spring steelhead season is the beginning of our fishing year, so please don’t wait too long to book your spring and summer trout fishing trips.  We had a fantastic day of streamer fishing last Thursday.  The water was perfect (level and temps)….it was a ton of fun!!!  It got us all looking forward and day dreaming about summer trout fishing!

Streamers are always an option in the spring when conditions are right.  Stripping fry and smaller baitfish patterns on bright/clearer days and larger patterns in higher water levels.  Switching colors, size patterns and strip speeds will help you crack the code.  Browns can be extremely particular on most days, but their predatory instincts will trigger strikes.  Steelhead will also hit a stripped streamer!  I like a mid-sized pattern with more flash when targeting steelhead.  But you might get browns on a steelhead type pattern and steelhead on a trout type pattern…you just never know on the Pere Marquette River.  After all, it’s a trout stream with a “migratory fish problem”.  It truly is a one of a kind river!!!

We are starting the spring grind, but its what we have been waiting for all winter!  It is here and let’s go!!!  Please respect your fellow anglers and their space.  We are on the front edge of another great year of fishing on the Wild & Scenic Pere Marquette River.  Making memories, strengthening friendships, telling stories from previous years and spending quality time on the river!!!  Good luck out there and looking forward to seeing everyone on the water, in our boats and/or around the shop/Motel.


John Karakashian