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Hook & Hunting

Where the fish are biting this week, March 28 report

Make sure you have your license for the season

The new fishing license and regulation season kicks off April 1, so anglers need to be sure they have purchased a new license for the fishing season in order to enjoy Michigan’s great fishing opportunities. The 2024 fishing licenses are valid through March 31, 2025. Fishing licenses can be purchased at or by downloading the Michigan DNR Hunt Fish app and purchasing your license on the app.

Here’s how fishing looks this week in the Northwest Lower Peninsula, Northeast Lower Peninsula and Upper Peninsula, according to the latest report from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

Northeast Lower Peninsula

Au Gres: Snow and cold weather resulted in low fishing pressure. Those who made it out reported catching large numbers of small perch at Palmer Road, however there were not many keepers.


Oscoda: Pier fishing remained good. Anglers fishing with spawn did well on steelhead from early morning on. Those fishing large minnows on the bottom had success when targeting lake trout. Atlantic and coho salmon were caught from the pier when using crankbaits, spoons, and minnows on bobbers. Natural colored crankbaits worked well, while spoons in green/silver, blue/silver, and golds worked best. Weather permitting, boat anglers had success fishing for lake trout, coho salmon, and Atlantic salmon in 15 to 30 feet of water. Short lead cores off planer boards had the best results using spoons in watermelon, orange and greens. Slower trolling speeds worked best as water temperatures were around 39 to 40 degrees.

Au Sable River: The river was reported to be producing good numbers of steelhead below Foote Dam when drifting spawn, beads and wax worms. Early morning was the most productive time of day. Boat anglers targeted the deep runs in the lower portion of the river with moderate success. Plugs, spoons, and fresh spawn were all reported to be productive.

Tawas: Pier anglers reported fishing to be slow and only caught a few lake trout and whitefish. The few boat anglers that made it out reported marking fish but, had trouble getting them to bite.

Northwest Lower Peninsula

Frankfort: Anglers who fished the north pier reported lower numbers of steelhead, and a few coho salmon hitting on spawn. Anglers who trolled between the pierheads reported catching a couple of brown trout in the morning hours on body baits. Anglers reported that fresh spawn seemed to work best.


Manistee: Fishing was reported to be on the slower side. Pier anglers caught mostly steelhead with a couple brown trout in the mix. Those trolling outside the harbor didn’t have any luck as water temperatures were very cold along the beach.

Ludington: Fishing was hit or miss. Very few brown trout and coho were caught while trolling in the harbor. A couple steelhead were caught off the north pier while using spawn. Water temperatures outside the pier heads and along the beach were very cold resulting in low catch rates.

Upper Peninsula

Little Bay de Noc: Weather created tough fishing conditions and limited pressure from anglers. Perch anglers that made it out were able to catch fish and reported good fishing when using perch rigs with worms or minnows. The Kipling, Rapid River, and Escanaba River docks are in, although there was shore ice reported at the Rapid River launch.

Marquette: Anglers fishing along the breakwall reported doing well when fishing for coho salmon. Due to weather, there were very few boats that were able to make it out on the water. Anglers who were floating down the Chocolay River did quite well catching steelhead and brown trout. Anglers fishing the Carp River reported consistently catching steelhead. Spawn and wax worms on jigs worked well for steelhead in both the Carp and Chocolay rivers. Trolling blue and silver spoons as well as tiger striped patterned Rapalas seemed to be popular colors for catching coho salmon in the lower harbor as well as buckeye jigs off the breakwall.


Au Train: Winter weather kept boats off Lake Superior. Anglers also reported slowed numbers of coho salmon being caught. Blue and silver spoons did well for coho. Tiger striped or bright orange and gold double jointed Rapalas were reported to work well for brown trout and steelhead out by northwest side of the island.

Keweenaw Bay: Angling pressure was low due to inclement weather. Anglers who were able to brave the cold and rain were rewarded with splake, rainbow trout and brown trout caught mostly from shore. Anglers who had the most success fishing from shore were using spawn and casting near river mouths. In coming weeks expect more precipitation and more fish staging near to river mouths.

Fishing tip of the week: Detroit River worth checking out

Many anglers have their go-to spots for springtime fishing, but what about checking out the Detroit River?

According to many, in late March and early April the lower Detroit River is a great location to catch walleye in decent quantities. As April moves on fish move further upriver, but the opportunities are still bountiful.


As many are aware, several of Michigan’s Great Lakes waters have become world famous for walleye. The Lake Erie-Detroit River-Lake St. Clair-St. Clair River system is outstanding, drawing anglers from across the country in spring and early summer – will you be joining them?

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