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Upper Manistee River Trout Fishing

Upper Manistee Trout Fishing Report
Streamer Fishing Northern Michigan

Manistee River Trout Report

Upper Manistee River Trout Fishing report for the first part of 2021 is off to a pretty good start. With a mild winter so far, seems as if the fish are eager to feed. Water levels currently look good, I will not lie I would take some rain or more snow but beggars can’t be choosers. All in all trout fishing is pretty good.

Streamer Fishing

The go to tactic currently is streamer fishing, not really fishing big patterns. Normally 3-4″ in length mostly with cone heads to lead the fly deeper into the runs. Fishing both with sinking lines and floating lines with cone head type patterns has been the most productive. Does seem if you can slow the fly down you will have better success. Slowing your retrieve gets your fly deeper and leads to more opportunity and interest with the chilly water temps as well.

4 Wheel drive is a must in most areas of the river so please be careful if your brining your own boat, but with 4-6″ of snow you can get into most launches if you know the area. But with the warm up today mid 40’s snow is melting and snow that was once packed pretty good by track could lead to some interesting turn arounds with a trailer.

Water Monitoring Stations

With two water monitoring stations now located on the Upper Manistee River you should add this link here for temp and flow data near the CCC Bridge and you should also book mark the new USGS site at M72 to follow trends in water conditions when planning your next fishing adventure. As guides we use this information daily in aiding our decision making process when planning for our days on the water. Conditions dictate success and understanding what the conditions are before you arrive can help you make smarter choices regarding where and how you fish a certain piece of water.

This new site is going to be a very valuable tool for the longterm. Now that real time data is available at both water monitoring stations, anglers will be able to develop a better understanding of water levels as they relate to depth and how wadable a section of river is to the walk and wade angler for example. When you begin to understand what the actual cfs reading looks like from a conditions standpoint, you will also be able to visualize how high and dirty a piece of water might be. This is an important association to develop when trying to choose the best sections to fish as we move forward with winter.

Trout Guide Trips

We continue to spend most our time on the Lower Manistee River for steelhead , and the Pere Marquette but with access to trout we are all happy to simply get out and fish. We are booking spring trips currently, you can reach us at 231-631-5701 (leave a message) or shoot us an email.

Tight Lines,

Jon Ray

SA Amplitude Smooth Infinity

SA Amplitude Smooth Infinity

SA Amplitude Smooth Infinity

brown trout picture

Day Time Hex Eater

A new line was introduced in the past month the SA Amplitude Smooth Infinity  and have had the pleasure to test it out over the last month.  Line showed up during Hex Season, even though my go to line for Hex is the Glow Line , but I have a few days each year that allow daytime fishing of the Hex Hatch.  Turning over big dry flies into tight quarters is a must and the New Smooth Infinity was up to the task.

Location, Location, Location

During the last thee weeks the line continues to bring it’s A game to Northern Michigan. With the foam bite (hoppers, ants, and beetles) mixed in with twitching (small streamers on a floating line) these two methods are a huge part of my summer program for trout.  Having a line that can deliver dry flies to within inches of a log, but still has the energy to turn over a small weighted streamer with a tungsten cone head into a deep pool.  Is a must for me, nice to have confidence that the SA Smooth Infinity can do both without missing a beat.

Local Fly Shop

If you have ever spent much time with me in the boat, and we talk equipment you know how I feel about fly lines, it is the most important part of your equipment!  Make sure to stay on top of the latest technology and check them out at your local fly shop.  Also if you see me on the water and want to take a test cast just ask.

Amplitude Smooth Infinity from Scientific Anglers on Vimeo.

There’s a reason we call this line the Infinity: there is no end to what you’ll be able to do with it. The Scientific Anglers Amplitude Smooth Infinity taper is a half-size heavy freshwater line built for everything from panfish to pike. With a long rear taper and extended front taper, it’s delicate for dry flies, has enough power for streamers, and can mend line for nymph rigs with equal ability. Built with the AST Plus slickness additive, Infinity lines are 50% slicker than any other SA line, and will last, on average, eight times longer than any line from the competition.

Remember: REAL NERDS GET ALL THE FISH.

russ maddin streamer fishing

Streamer Fishing article with Russ Maddin

Great article about steamer fishing featuring good friend and fellow guide Russ Maddin.  Russ, shares a few of this beliefs about streamer fishing.  Check out this article, it will help you become a better streamer fisherman.  NO matter the species you chase, from brown trout to muskie.

Picture of the Day – Jumping Brown Trout

jumping brown troutSometimes it is better to be lucky , had the camera at ready for some reason at the right time for this jumping brown trout.  Love the spraying water effect.  Feel free to click on the photo and you will go to my Smug Mug page as well, to see a larger size.

First Day with Scott Radian 907

Will do a little more talking about the Scott Radian 907 in the future , but just wanted to post a couple quick pics from a personal trout streamer day with Ed McCoy yesterday.  Was my first day with 907 and so glad I bought one, great rod for the Michigan trout scene.  Perfect with my 250 SA sink tip.

 Perfect streamer rod for Michigan trout streams.

Lamprey match the hatch

With the official start of lamprey season (chestnut lamprey),  the biggest match the hatch we have here in Michigan for our streamer program.  Not that there is really a season for lamprey, but I just happened to notice they the crawled out of the mud this week. Some people have told me trout don’t eat lamprey.  Okay.  If they don’t eat them, I’m fine with that, but they sure don’t like them.  Pictured below is a trout we caught this weekend on an imitation lamprey streamer pattern.  This trout had 11 different lamprey attached to him and out of anger destroyed my simple fur and feather pattern.

IMG_7066 IMG_7097

 

Trout season has started

IMG_6752A great way to start the trout season with a true yellow belly.  Jon B scores a great michigan trout, while streamer fishing on the Upper Manistee.  All indications point to a great trout season ahead of us.