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Manistee River below Tippy Dam

Manistee River Fishing Report

Manistee River Below Tippy Dam

The Manistee River below Tippy Dam fishing report for late July. Water Levels are normal for this time of year, but water is extremely clear. Not sure I have ever seen the Big Manistee below Tippy Dam this clear. Our main focus this time of year is on Bass and Pike. With top-water and streamer tactics giving us the best opportunities.

The first signs of Kings have shown up, now the pods that I’ve seen are small groups. But Salmon are now in the Big River. Not uncommon for an early push, but wow do I feel bad for these guys. With the hottest temps of the summer and low clear water, not a good combo for the fish that have showed up already.

Smallmouth Bass Fishing

Manistee River below Tippy Dam
Manistee River Smallmouth Fishing

Smallmouth bass fishing feels as if some of our best smallmouth bass days are behind us, as early in the season was extremely good. But with water low and clear now, the game has gotten a tab bit challenging. I have really had to downsize the patterns, and some of my best top water patterns don’t chug. Dead drifting or skating large attractor patterns near structure.

One key thing to remember when smallmouth bass fishing later in the summer, is that most minnows that smallmouth are key in one are at their smallest. So down sizing to a size 8 hook can get you some of the best results.

Summer Gear

Still have a few sizes of our Summer Gear in stock. Any questions feel free to drop us a line. The Hand Towel and the T-shirts have been a big hit so far. Thank you for all the support.

Booking a Trip

The fishing right now is in the dog days of summer. Ed is on his Mousing program , Jeff is in AK for the rest of the summer, and I’m bouncing between trout water and smallmouth sections. If you’re looking to book a Trout/Bass/Pike Fishing Trip give us a call at (231-631-5701) or shoot us an email . Heading into summer we will over both full day and half day adventures for smallmouth bass on the lower Manistee river below Tippy Dam. Not too early to book your Fall Steelhead trip as well, still a few dates open.

Tight Lines,

Jon Ray

Scott Sector S 8107

Scott Sector S 8107

Scott Sector S 8107
Smallmouth Bass Fly Rod

Scott Sector

The Scott Sector S 8107 is one of the newest fly rods in the Scott Fly rod line up. The Sector series is geared toward the Saltwater market. Needing a new seven weight I decided to pick up the 8 foot 10 inch 7 weight in this new series. While understanding it’s one of the fastest rod actions in their lineup, it would give me diversity in my fly rod selection. If I have to be completely honest, I tend to lean heavy on the Scott Radians.

As soon as I picked up the Scott Sector S 8107 the first words out of my mouth were “man this is light”. Being a guy that is known to break pretty much anything, having the lightest usually isn’t what I’m most thrilled about. But after taking the Sector through a Hex season on the Upper Manistee and giving it a good test during the first part of my Smallmouth Season, this rod gave me a good first impression.

Positive Feedback

Scott’s all new Carbon Web technolody improves torsional stability and rod durability by encasing the unidirectional fibers in a web of ultra-light multi-directional carbon fiber.

As I mentioned the rod is super light, and the above quote from Scott Fly Rods gives some of the techie stuff that I don’t really understand, but makes it sound super fancy. What I know is that you can cast this rod all day, especially if you balance it with a light reel. I have a Ross Revolution LTX on the Sector I am running and it seems to balance well on this rod at 4.65 oz.

The next thing I noticed with the Scott Sector S 8107 is the stripping guides. I love a big stripping guide and these are some of the largest diameter guides I can remember seeing on a 7 weight rod. The Sector features all new CeRecoil stripping guides with nickel titanium frames and super slick Zirconia inserts, along with Recoil nickel titanium snake guides for low friction and corrosion free performance. The guide sets are PVD coated in a low reflective coating for even greater durability and stealth. Large guides allow greater line speed when you cast, thus a farther cast.

The S 8107 seems to team up well with the short quick line tapers that are now common from most fly line companies. I’ve been running the SA Glow Line during my Hex Hatch season, which is on the Frequency Magnum taper, and the SA Bass Bug Taper for my smallmouth fishing trips. These rods have very little swing weight and are great with short head lines.

8 Foot 10

I decided to go with the S 8107 because smallmouth bass was the main target for this rod, having a quick responding easy casting rod that can quickly fire into small pockets is what I was looking for with the Scott Sector S 8107. This is exactly the situation in which the Sector excels. This rod is fast, much faster than the Scott Radians, which I have to note here again is my personal favorite trout rod!

When I’m fishing topwater flies for Smallmouth Bass I like to make longer casts, chugging or popping the popper a few feet off the bank, and then quickly picking up the line and firing it back towards the shore. No complaints when it comes to picking up longer amounts of line with the Sector. This rod has handled every range of casts I have thrown at it.

Cons

Really the only cons of the Scott Sector S 8107 are some minor points, but really they are little facts about the rod that it actually wasn’t designed to do anyway. The rod seems too fast for dry flies and casting at slow rising trout isn’t really in its wheel house. While as a mousing stick I think it will work out about perfect, but jet setting on a trout with this quick stick seems to be a common occurrence. Also I wouldn’t buy this length if I planned on roll casting, the Sector is designed to be fast, so roll casting isn’t really what it’s known for. Also because the rod fishes so well with the short head fly lines we already mentioned, those lines to are not going to help you in the roll cast department either.

Overall Review

While the new Scott Sector S 8107 isn’t going to take the place of my Scott Radians during the Hex Hatch or even on my next trout streamer trip, it defiantly has a place in my arsenal. Especially when I know it’s going to be a long day of casting, the rod is so light and so far very durable. It casts tight loops, throws poppers and frogs into heavy cover, and has plenty of power to pull smallmouth bass away from logs and stumps. It’s going to be a great rod next time I get to travel again to the salt. If your looking for a fast rod the Sector should be first on your list of new fly rods to cast, so please go check one out at your Local Fly Shop.

Summer Time Smallmouth

photo courtesy of Kevin Feenstra

Had the opportunity to fish with good friend and fellow guide Kevin Feentra yesterday on a new section of water.  Also joining us was Jerry Darkes of ACS – The FishDog .  Jerry, Kevin and I all love the hunt for big smallmouth.  We had a banner day working new water, fishing big baitfish patterns, poppers, and the occasional crayfish pattern. With the current weather pattern smallmouth fishing in the rivers is really heating up.  With July, August, and September all really prime time to river smallmouth here in Northern Michigan.

Also hoping to announce the release of the DVD in a few more days.  A picture of the cover can be seen now on the DVD page .  We are down to the final step, more to come hopefully this week.

Big Appetite Small Mouth DVD Trailer

After 2.5 years of blood, sweat, and tears (not really). The Big Appetite Small Mouth DVD trailer is finally finished. Not trying to paint the wrong picture, but an amazing amount of work actually has gone into this project. Want to first thank Erik Rambo for all is professional video and audio work. Also want to thank Kevin Feenstra for making this a very fun and enjoyable project.

“Enjoy the trailer!

To purchase a copy of the DVD Big Appetite: Small Mouth please visit my online shop.”

 

 

Big Appetite Small Mouth DVD Trailer from Mangled Fly Media on Vimeo.