Steelhead fishing Below Tippy Dam
The Manistee River fishing report below Tippy Dam has us in late fall or early winter mode. Received our first significant snow yesterday with 3-5″ of the white stuff blanketing the ground and boat ramps. With water levels remain low and clear, the fish that are here are on high alert . We continue to only receive small trickles of new fish coming. But I will say my last few trips I’ve noticed an uptick in hook ups. While mostly because I’ve had a down trend in other fishing boats, I have been finding a few more steelhead per trip.
Here is a link to the NEW NRC Amendment for the 1 fish limit for steelhead.
Currently the Manistee Water Water Levels is on a slight rise with the small amount of rain and snow lately . We are currently at 1560 CFS and would love to see some more rain or snow. Manistee River is low and clear in most sections and downsizing your presentation is key once again. Water temperatures on the Big Manistee are still in the low 40’s (currently at 41 F).
Definitely been noticing some dropping water temperature tendencies , meaning you better start fishing some slower seams and looking for some slower moving water. This temp drop from the 40’s into the 30’s can be one of the toughest scenarios . But once it settles and levels out fishing will be good for the rest of the winter months.
Egg Flies and Swung Flies
I was all over the board this week with fly colors. One day size 12mm was my best with the biggest brightest stuff I had in the box firing, to the next day with high sun and blue bird skies I had to run the dullest 8mm I own. Looking for colors such as Sunny D or Mandarin.
Same can be said for the swung flies, early fall firet iger one day to the smallest black with hardly any blue flash would be our only action.
Best advice I can give you is be ready to tie a few extra knots each day and change out until you find something that works . Simple concept this year I’ve been employing is to have faith in the fly or presentation. It’s probably not the color if the steelhead are there they have been active in the first few casts. Have faith in what you’re throwing just keep fishing. It’s not the fly.
Booking a Trip
Manistee River below Tippy Dam is one of the best west side steelhead rivers in the state of Michigan. Mangled Fly guides are starting to have some openings now that we are almost to December so please give us a call at (231-631-5701) or shoot us an email . Guides are open to a full or 1/2 day trip. With winter fast approaching some of the best fishing can be from 10am to 2pm.