Purely Michigan Fishing


Best places in Michigan to fish

Michigan is well known as the Great Lakes state, but a lot of “out of staters” don’t completely understand the amount of fishing opportunities Michigan has to offer. Fishing is deeply engrained in our culture. Even the unfortunate few that don’t fish have relatives, friends, co-workers or neighbors that are addicted to fishing.

In many states the only fishable lakes are man-made, dammed up rivers and the rivers are few and far between. They come to Michigan to fish the Great Lakes or one specific inland lake or river and think “Wow, this is a great place”. What they don’t understand is the numerous places and variety of fishing that Michigan has to offer. No matter the time of year, there are numerous species to target.

At the beginning of the year safe ice covers most inland lakes. This offers Michigan fisherman, who don’t own boats, an opportunity to fish the entire lake. It’s also a completely different style of fishing that most states don’t offer and just don’t understand. If you’re not into walking on water, Steelhead and many other species are plentiful in rivers all winter long. Spring and fall times when lakes are unsafe, look to the rivers for fish running upstream to spawn. Finally, come Summer, the variety of fish and techniques to catch them can’t be measured.

The world famous Great Lakes fishery offers Pier Fishing, Surf Fishing, Deep Water Trolling and Jigging and Shallow Water Casting. Michigan fisherman can target a huge variety of fish within minutes of the same port. Salmon, Steelhead, Lake Trout, Bass, Walleye, Perch, Whitefish, Pike, Musky and Panfish are some of the favorites and they are all plentiful. From any spot in Michigan you are no more than 83 miles from fishing one of the Great Lakes.

If searching for inland lakes, Michigan fisherman have over 11,ooo choices from 20,000 acres to less than an acre. Our great state offers weedy, lily pad covered bodies of water or crystal  clear, white sand bottomed paradises and they all offer plentiful fisheries.

Michigan offers over 36,000 miles of rivers and streams. Whether you enjoy trolling up river with a motor, floating in a canoe, wading or just walking the river bank, Michigan fishing offers it all. Salmon, Steelhead and Walleye have huge runs in Spring and Fall in many rivers. Others offer brook, brown and rainbow trout or bass, pike and panfish fishing all year.

There is no place in Michigan that is farther than 6 miles from a lake or stream. Whether you live in a remote area of the upper peninsula or in downtown Detroit, Michigan fishing opportunities are within minutes. To me, that makes Michigan the best place to be a fisherman.

Check out www.FishMich.com to view all of Michigan’s Fishing opportunities and leave us some reports on the Forum.

Finding a charter boat captain

best fishing charters

Lakes For Fishing

A man hiring a charter is a lot like his wife going to the spa. He is anxious to go for weeks and rarely comes back in a bad mood. I enjoy every part of fishing, from finding my own spots to using my own tackle, but as my wife says “it’s just nice to be pampered once in a while”. Now, you won’t get quite the same pampering on a charter boat (I’ve yet to meet a captain that’s gonna give you a massage), but it’s better attention in my eyes. To not drive the boat while fishing, not search the sonar constantly, not check gps point after point. Just sit back and watch your rod and when that moment comes reel in the fish.

It’s not a sure fire way to catch fish, but nothing is. I’ve had friends  that wanted to hire a charter, but don’t want to pay for something and then get skunked. That happens. The main thing you have to remember is when fishing nothing is definite. Your captain will try his or her best to catch you fish because they want you to be happy and they know, no matter how fun it was, you will always remember not catching a fish.

Here are some good starting points to finding a charter service.

First it depends on what type of fish you want to target. From salmon to walleye or smallmouth bass, every charter offers something different. If you aren’t sure, check out youtube or other sites to watch videos that will help you decide.

Next is area. Different lakes and sections of lakes are more popular than others. Lake Erie for walleye, Grand Traverse Bay for smallmouth or Manistee for salmon.

Now that it’s narrowed down, check listings on the web and in local phone books. FishMich.com has a listing area for guides and another good spot would be the Michigan Charter Boats Association. Check out any information you can get on them. Check local bait shops for who they recommend or ask about a certain captain. Some bait shops even offer charter services or work with specific ones. I like asking in a fishing forum for suggestions. Referrals are the best source, so be sure to refer your captain to friends after a successful trip.

This is a start on finding a captain. If you have any other suggestions feel free to leave a comment.