Fishermen continue to be successful


BIG RAPIDS – The September fishing should be good for fishermen in the area.

In Mecosta County, “they catch perch on the Muskegon River, they catch walleye over there, they use caterpillars,” said Vic Havens of Frank’s Sporting Goods in Morley. “They’re fishing in some inland lakes, but of course this weekend is starting the hunt for young people, so people are starting to go hunting.”

At Frankfort, chinook salmon entered Betsie Bay and moved up the river. Coho have been reported in Platte Bay, the DNR said.

“Things are getting better,” said Rob Eckerson of Pappy’s Bait Shop in Wellston. “The water has risen. The temperature has dropped to 67. We have fish at the dam and a few stop over in the lower reaches of the river. The Betsie to the north contains a few fish. I don’t think it’s fully blossomed yet. Maybe the weather this weekend will help. PM also contains fish up to the fly section.

“There is also perch in Portage and Manistee lakes.

The boat fishermen in Manistee were targeting salmon and fished a mix of chinook and coho. The DNR said the best offshore catches were in 120 to 250 feet of water. Chinook salmon have also been found by boat fishermen in the Big Manistee River and Manistee Lake. Fishermen obtained catches in Lake Manistee using jigs, offshore J-Plugs, spoons and meat platforms.

“People are starting to fish now at the Manistee River,” said Dewey Buchner of Don’s Sporting Goods in Manistee. “They’re all at Tippy (dam) now. The beings catch sunfish in Lake Manistee.

The offshore fishery at Ludington produced chinook and coho, MNR said, adding that the best fishing was in 150 to 250 feet of water. Boat fishermen caught chinook in the channel and in Père Marquette Lake. Jigging produced the highest catch rates in Lac Pere Marquette, MNR said.

“It’s been going pretty well in the river so far,” a Captain Chuck’s spokesperson told Ludington. “They are settling a little more in the lake of Père Marquette.

Chinook salmon and coho were caught in 60 to 100 feet of depth in 100 to 130 feet of water at Harbor Springs. Lake trout were captured at a depth of 85 feet. The boat fishermen fished mainly salmon from Wequetonsing to Pointe.

“There are still some really good salmon in the big lake,” Bud Fitzgerald of Tangled Tackle Co. “A lot of charters are still doing very well there. Flies and plugs are predominant there. The river is full of fish. I know there is fish in the Betsie. The outlets work there. They were catching big sunfish at Lake Manistee. But I think it’s pretty much all over.

Boat fishermen fished around the Charlevoix cement plant and mainly used spoons, plugs and flashers / flies. A pair of chinooks were caught 60 to 70 feet deep in 90 to 100 feet of water.

The boats were primarily targeting the Petoskey area just outside the salmon breakwater, some fishing as far as Bay Harbor.

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