Pere Marquette last weekend

bonefish41

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Weather good...fished lower river with guides for two days. Got two out of two that was the good. The bad was it took 14 hours for two fish. Not a hit the first day. Steel just started so I was a bit early... going back mid November after Key West.
Oct2019PM1.jpg
Waiting for the boat...my rigs 8wt Xi3 extended the overall to 10 feet 450 OPST and 9wt TFO Deer Creek Skagit blank overall 11.5 feet 550 Skagit

OCT2019PM2.jpg

Lower River

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bonefish41

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At your pleasure but it was more just roll cast than actual spey/skagit casting...one fly swing and the other bead with nymph below on nymph ...indicator/bobber...my guide caught a 12-15 lb steel(while I was lunching) on a "pure" center pin with single bead as in no drag all hand...it may not be flyrod but with that sized fish in a woody river no drag 10lb fluro with a wet noodle rod it was a very skillful piece of angling and for my part I netted..without touching the line or flopping the fish out of the net
 

myt1

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It is my understanding that two steelhead in two days is considered very good, particularly, as you mentioned, since it is a little early in the season.

Congratulations.
 

LandoLando

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Wow those are nice! I’ve got a trip planned in February to go after some steelhead for the first time. I’d be happy to do half as well as you did.
 

dennyk

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It is my understanding that two steelhead in two days is considered very good, particularly, as you mentioned, since it is a little early in the season.

Congratulations.
When the fish are in the PM 2 hook ups an hour would not be unusual.

Those are some beautiful Steelhead!

Denny
 

Ard

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Sorry for the delay, I moved you to 2 hand trip reports and again...……….. Nice! You don't know how badly I want to see another of those yet this year, you did well in my book.
 

Unknownflyman

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Great trip man, I have to get over and swing that river, its been in the back of my mind for a couple years, my friends do well there swinging flies. Great looking steelhead! Congratulations!
 
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Well done! That is my home river and I think two steelhead to hand is a pretty solid accomplishment this time of year. I'm trying to learn how to fish my new home in the tropics and am kind of missing getting after some fish on the PM. Thanks for posting!
 

Unknownflyman

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I see many pics in boats on that river, is the river wadeable and swingable and is there late season winter action? I`m thinking maybe a trip after deer hunting as my home river closes November 15th.

If these questions are too specific drop me a PM please. Thanks in advance!
 

dennyk

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I see many pics in boats on that river, is the river wadeable and swingable and is there late season winter action? I`m thinking maybe a trip after deer hunting as my home river closes November 15th.

If these questions are too specific drop me a PM please. Thanks in advance!
Hi Steve, I have not fished the PM in a long time, but yes it is wader friendly in certain parts. This time of year the floaters and kayaks are gone. My favorite time to fish it was in the late fall and winter for Steelhead south of the Baldwin area between M-37 and Gleason's Landing. Wader friendly, I use a one handed rod but the two handed rods you favor should not be a problem. I do have several friends that fish it on a regular basis. An up to date contact would be Nomad Anglers-Erich Gross Ph: 616-805-4393- he or Justin fish it on a regular basis through the year. They will be happy to help you out.

Denny
 

Unknownflyman

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Hi Steve, I have not fished the PM in a long time, but yes it is wader friendly in certain parts. This time of year the floaters and kayaks are gone. My favorite time to fish it was in the late fall and winter for Steelhead south of the Baldwin area between M-37 and Gleason's Landing. Wader friendly, I use a one handed rod but the two handed rods you favor should not be a problem. I do have several friends that fish it on a regular basis. An up to date contact would be Nomad Anglers-Erich Gross Ph: 616-805-4393- he or Justin fish it on a regular basis through the year. They will be happy to help you out.

Denny
Thanks Denny! I`ll send you a pm if I make it out this winter, if you want to go swing some flies.
 

ddb

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I've fished for steelhead in the PM flies only section for a long time and there definitely are some stretches I would consider good for two-hander drfiting. But wider, fish holding, spots are less common closer to M37 where many --most? -- steelies tend to hold in deeper cuts along the banks in the narrower sections after the fall runs. That makes for tough swinging but nymphs and streamers work well in such slots.

I would strongly advise you get some river background from local 2 handers -- or a guide -- or spend your exploratory hours with a one-hander until,you zero in on the best water for your preferred style of fishing.

ddb
 
J

joe_strummer

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Once upon a time, the wader-friendly water above Gleason's Landing was my home water.
 

thirdcoaststeelheader

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The flies only section on the PM has some stretches of water that can be fished on the swing. It is wadable, but in some sections there is a soft muddy bottom. Also, there is a good amount of private property that one needs to watch out for.
 

myt1

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The flies only section on the PM has some stretches of water that can be fished on the swing. It is wadable, but in some sections there is a soft muddy bottom. Also, there is a good amount of private property that one needs to watch out for.
I have never fished the PM, but I have fished the Muskegon, the Betsie, the White, and the Manistee.

Except in a few areas, which are the exception rather than the rule, I always feel like I'm fishing in someones backyard; and I've read between the lines enough to figure out that it is a very similar situation on the PM.

Not only that, but unlike other states where it is legal to walk on shore below the high-water mark, I don't believe you are allowed to leave the water when adjacent to private land. I have almost fallen in numerous times when wading and dry land was literally only a few feet away.

We are very spoiled in the west, where we can go days without even seeing infrastructure when we fish, so if it wasn't for my high school buddies who I fish with in Michigan I would be taking a pass on the entire state.

That being said, I have never fished the UP, but I have read enough Jim Harrison books to know that the robber barons have pretty much decimated the UP as well with their unregulated mining and logging back in the day.

Sadly, Michigan is just one more Paradise Lost.
 

thirdcoaststeelheader

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This is something I heard from fisherman riverside; I understand that one can walk a certain distance onto the bank in Michigan rivers when there is a difficult-to-pass point present. Generally, one must stay in the water though. And landowners on some stretches of the PM do seem to expect that people try and respect that too.
 
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