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Upper Manistee Trout Fishing

Upper Manistee River Trout Fishing

Manistee River Trout Report

Upper Manistee River Trout Fishing report has us entering the last month of the year and we are beginning the transition into our winter programs. With our primary focus on the Big Manistee Below Tippy Dam, and winter fishing the Pere Marquette River. We find ourselves spending less time on the Upper Manistee River trout fishing. But when the occasion pops up it’s always a treat. Access can be limited this time of year so play with caution. Not many ramps are cleared of ice and snow so be careful.

Upper Manistee River Trout Fishing

Winter trout fishing on the Upper Manistee River means streamer fishing. With Brown Trout have finished spawning so this can be a good time of year to target some bigger trout. Not too often do you see the small guys chase this time of year. Primarily you will see the adults out looking for those bigger meals. As was the case the other day, not many chasers but the fish we did get was a really nice post spawn hen that was eager to crush our streamer.

Look for fish to be sitting in slow woody spots. Using cover as a hiding spot to ambush prey, but also to conserve energy during the winter. These spots are not always the deep spots either, normally some of the best spots are only a couple feet deep.

Also fly size isn’t normally our biggest patterns, more the 3-5″ stuff. Color that matches the bottom color or water hue are normally best. Look for sculpins, leeches, and small baitfish to be your best bet.

New Trout Flies

McCoys Iyso Dun Grey
Natural Iyso

We have new Trout Flies that we will be selling this year. Ed McCoy has released new patterns and over the coming months we will be getting stock so make sure to check back or sign up for our Newsletter to get the updates when they arrive. The new McCoy Iyso Dun Grey is currently available and this is sure to be a winner this June during the Iyso hatch. Get yours while they are still in stock. This are sure to sell out.

Didymo

Didymo on the Upper Manistee continues to be a problem as new sections fall ill to its presence and previously affected areas are still producing viable cells. I would consider the whole Upper Manistee River System to be contaminated with this Diatom. Didymo is considered a very resilient invasive species so you need to educate yourself on safe cleaning techniques that you will need to clean your gear or anything that touches the water. It can be spread between watersheds very easily and can be detrimental to our trout streams.

The amount of Didymo that we are still seeing on our floats on the Upper Manistee below CCC Bridge is very disheartening, it is going to take some time yet so see what happens next in the lower river. The short term implications have not been very good for what a longterm bloom may do to the ecosystem and fishing. We have found Didymo now from Yellow Trees to the CCC Bridge as well. I would expect it will continue to extend its presence further upstream as we enter the fall season and leaf drop allows more sunlight penetration through the tree canopy.

I would consider the Entire River TO BE CONTAMINATED and treat it as such. Clean, Drain, Dry your gear before entering another Body of Water. Currently, there are no effective methods to eradicate didymo once it is established in a river. To prevent spreading Didymo and other aquatic invasive species to new locations, it is critical for users to thoroughly Clean, Drain and Dry waders, equipment, and boats upon leaving a waterway.

  • Clean by removing mud and debris from all surfaces.
  • Use a 10% Solution of Dishwashing Soap with hot water for 10 minutes (Example 1 gallon of water is 12.8 oz of Dawn Soap). Then it must dry for 48 hours (mandatory if your fishing different water systems).

Trout Guide Trip

If your looking to book a Trout Guide Trip you can reach us at 231-631-5701 (leave a message) or shoot us an email if your looking to book a Winter trout trip. Have you seen the new Brown Trout T-shirt yet? Still have a few sizes remaining. Also make sure to check a few of the new colors we have in the Low Profile Trucker Hat and also the Full Size Trucker.

Jon Ray

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Digital Camo Hat

Camo Hat still working

A couple impressive fish from a few Mangled Fly customers.  First is Bob H. who was fishing with world famous Muskie Guide Blane Chocklett and scores a dandy muskie on the fly.  Nice work Bob!  Bob wearing one of the old school Digital Camo Hats with the old hook logo.  Great to see the hat is doing you well!

Digital Camo Hat

Kean also sent in this impressive trout pic from his latest journey to Chile.  Kean who has always been a believer in the power of the Digital Camo Hat scores another impressive trout while wearing his lucky charm.  Great fish Kean!  Fish was caught on a circus peanut we tied for Kean, with a special blend of southern hemisphere colors.

circus peanut

brown trout picture

Few Different Pics

First need to apologize for the lack on content, nothing but excuses but hope to find some time and create some interesting content in the coming weeks.  Here are a few images to help scratch the itch.

Kean hunting his first Pike on the fly, it was pretty exciting to watch this predator hunt down our dying bait fish pattern.  Using the Scientific Anglers Intermediate Titan Taper with a Essox Leader we had a few chances at Pike and caught multiple nice smallmouth bass on the Manistee River this past weekend.

pike on the fly

Jerome joined me for a day time adventure and scored some really nice trout on dry flies, Jerome has to believe in the good luck his new Mangled Fly hat provided him.  Great day Jerome and impressive trout on the dry fly during the day.

brown trout picture

Had a chance to spend a few days along the west coast on a family vacation and shot this sunset picture. Always impressed by the size of Lake Michigan and how much it reminds me of the east coast.  Just missing a little bit of salt.

Sunset closing out an amazing family vacation #puremichigan #sunset #familytime

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Moon and Mouse

Have some exciting things in the works with Snap T Pictures again.  As Erik Rambo and I contiunue to combine forces on projects.  We have been bouncing around in the dark, and are excited about the latest project that should be done this fall after all the editing.  Stay tuned to see what night vision camera’s saw in the dark.

 

The hunt for browns in the dark leads to seeing the moon rise above the sky line.