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Great Lakes Region Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio. Post fishing reports, ask for information, discuss this area...

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  • 1 Post By ejsell
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Old 10-24-2013, 03:38 PM
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Default Steelhead

Leaving tomorrow for a week long steelhead trip with a couple of friends to north west michigan. We will be hitting the Platte and Betsie rivers for the most part and possibly a day spent down at the Manistee and Bear Creek. Hoping there are some early steelhead but if not at least I will be outside enjoying the scenery. Last year at this time I only caught 1, my first, a 32" male that had my heart pumping for a couple of days. I can still hear the sound of my reel spinning and wondering just how much backing do I have.
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Old 10-24-2013, 04:28 PM
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Default Re: Steelhead

Good luck and remember to tighten the drag, the farther you let them go the bigger chance of losing them.

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Old 10-24-2013, 05:11 PM
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Default Re: Steelhead

What a great trip. Hope the weather and the fish cooperate.
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Old 10-24-2013, 05:19 PM
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Default Re: Steelhead

Sounds like a great trip and remember Ard's post on the drag. A good site for state info on fishing: DNR - Weekly Fishing Report
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Old 10-24-2013, 07:51 PM
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Thumbs up Re: Steelhead

I didn't hit those rivers but I did spend quite a bit of time in that region just a couple of weeks back. I'm pretty confident that you will find silver. Enjoy your trip, I'm jealous!
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Old 10-28-2013, 09:04 AM
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Default Re: Steelhead

Along this line, planning to get up at least a few times in next couple weeks to Trail Creek in NW Indiana. Any early reports on activity up that way? Heard the St. Joe a little further east was already seeing some.
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Old 10-28-2013, 09:10 AM
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Default Re: Steelhead

We are heading to Wisconsin a week from Friday. There were steelhead in the river a week or so ago when my buddy was there. Hopefully there will be more and they will be hungry!

Good luck on your trip!
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Old 10-30-2013, 08:43 PM
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Default Re: Steelhead

I think you will do well. It looks like some favorable chrome reports in that area. I was in that area a few weeks ago and the steel was just starting to come into the rivers.
Good Luck!
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Old 11-03-2013, 10:11 AM
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Default Re: Steelhead

So steelhead were mostly a bust over the week. Only saw four or five caught all week. One of the guys in or group caught a nice 30 inch 12 pound female on a spawn sack. I think all of the fish I saw caught were on a spawn sacks. No one even had a hit on flies. I went through everything in my fly box and switched back and forth between sink tip and floating line. Everyone we talked to said they had a big wave of come through the week before but the weather had pretty much shut them down. The last day we were there they had some pretty heavy rain and temps were dropping again so the fishing should be good this coming week. We did see several steelhead hanging out in the Platte but they weren't active and they were extremely line shy in the crystal clear water. At one point I moved down to 4 pound tippet and they were still moving out of the way. The one caught by our group was on a 6 pound leader just before sunrise.

I did go 1 for 5 on kings and coho not including ones that got snagged. A few fresh ones had entered the rivers but most were old. I hooked into a beast, still chrome, king on the Betsie that took me down stream and after 3 leaps threw my hook. I've never seen anything that big leap that high out of the water .

At one point my buddy was fishing across from me in fast deep water and we tangled lines. I pulled in the lines, untangled them and threw his in first and then recast mine. Before the end of his drift he accidently snagged a salmon near the tail and but shook it loose just in time for me to realize I was also snagged on the same salmon. A little while later I again snagged someones line and pulled it in to untangle it but it kept pulling away. I shouted across the river to stop pulling but then the line went slack and a nice sized coho shot past me with about 50 feet of broken line attached to him. I held onto it for a few minutes until he broke the line off.

We still had a good time even without the steelhead, did some exploring and hit a couple new spots, tried surf fishing for first time and enjoyed practice casting. Hopefully in the next couple of weeks we are heading up to Steelhead Alley for the day, probably try the Rocky River.
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