Pic of the Day – San Juan Worm

Had to get down and dirty on the Upper Manistee, with a slower than normal couple days of trout fishing.  Had to bust out all the tricks.  Have honestly not thrown the worm, the san juan worm, since my Colorado days some 15 years ago.  Used to fish the worm on the Upper Colorado River on my days off.

Bobber Down!

 Getting down and dirty with a worm imitation on the upper manistee.

Protect Michigan Waters

This week on the Big Manistee was surprised to find the USFS crew with a power washer at the High Bridge boat ramp, handing out information about AIS (Aquatic Invasive Species).  Through a cooperative effort of the USFS, Manistee County, and local watershed groups; they are providing education and suppression efforts for the AIS.  Suppression efforts include this specially designed heated power washer for decontaminating boats and trailers.

Stop AIS

USFS spraying down the “tiny dancer”

Here is the pamphlet that the USFS was handing out, have scanned it into a PDF.  (save_MI_water ) Please view it over if you are a boater.  With all the water here in MI, it is important to wash boats and trailers if you visit different waters.  Wanted to thank the USFS for there willingness to help stop the spread of AIS, and getting out on the Big Manistee.  Thank you!

save_michigan

Off to the races – chasing spring chrome

scott T3HChasing chrome in the spring with the Scott 1108 T3H.  Perfect switch rod for the spring, easy to switch out the sink tip for the bobber/indy rig on those high pressure sunny spring days.  Throw on the SA 420 Evolution  and your good to go.  Spring fish are on the move, and even though it’s been cold fishing has been good.

The LRB and Steelhead Double

Getting a double header is a pretty unique experience, but something in the fall we actually do see with waves of curious steelhead pushing up the river and grabbing the first piece of food they see.  I love curious steelhead!  So getting a double header steelhead combo I would say is not a hard combination to come by.  But the Lake-Run Brown steelhead combo I’ver personally only had the chance to see twice here in Michigan.  I’m sure in other parts of the country the combo is more common.  But for us currently with a declining LRB population the past 10 years the opportunities are very rare.  Well last week (in the spring season no less) my clients Blake and Steve put a LRB / Steelhead combo in the net.  It true was a surprise.

lake-run brown steelhead doubleThe only other time I’ve had a chance to catch this combo is a day I will never forget.  With good friends and great guides Kevin Feenstra and Jeff Hubbard.  We were fishing on Kevin’s b-day when Jeff and I put these two great fish in the net while fishing streamers on the Muskegon River.  Photo below courtesy of Kevin Feenstra.

Jon Ray

streamer double header

February Steelhead

Had the chance to guide the past couple days for spring steelhead.  Felt so good to get back on the water and do what I love to do.  Also I will not lie yesterday’s sun felt so so good.  Bill pictured below with a very nice Michigan spring lake-run rainbow.

 

Never stood on the Manistee before

So I have to admit I probably could of gone farther out into the river, but I was a scaredy cat.  I am pictured below at the boat ramp of rainbow bend standing out pasted the end of the ramp in about 4-5 foot of water.  That was enough for me.  To say the least the lower end of the Manistee River has some shelf ice.

manistee river ice IMG_1134 IMG_1135

Manistee River Winter Steelhead – Picture of the Day

manistee_river_fishingHad the opportunity yesterday (Sunday, January 19th) to take Ben and John out for a little half day steelhead trip.  While getting out on the river has been a little more difficult than I’m used to this winter, the fishing still remains pretty rock solid.  With some of the best weeks of the winter/early spring season just ahead of us.  Have always been a fan of the February.  Days growing longer and no spring crowds.

 

Season of the Red-Side

Early season (late Sept – Novemeber) is all about the chrome, but now as winter sets in.  This year especially with mother nature giving us plenty of snow and cold so far, the red-strips are making a strong appearance.   Big bucks with single and double strips are starting to show up in our catches.  Yesterday in the snow this big buck gave us his best, and his rosy checks just plain stood out.

Winter steelhead fishing is truly in full effect and plenty of fish around for a great day.  Check out the fishing reports at hawkinsflyfishing.com as we play through out the winter.  Give me a call or shoot me an email if your interested in a full or half day.