Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Winter Fishing the Pere Marquette River in Michigan

(Pere Marquette River, Western Michigan)

Well, the weekend is over and I am back to work and back to reality… I plug fished last Friday on the Pere Marquette River with river guide Mike Marsh for steelhead on the lower section of the Pere Marquette near Scottsville Mi. We were “hot shoting” with the plugs, which means that we were trolling and working the river runs with the boat and trying to aggravate the fish to strike our lures.

Unfortunately, we did not see a fish, 6 of the good runs we wanted to fish has wood in them making them unfishable, but others have been out a number of times since my last report with very mixed results.
The fish were scare because it was sunny and steelhead conditions are much better when it is cloudy. Steelhead don’t like the sun or clear water, they tend to hide more under logs which in turn, make it harder for an angler to fish them. That’s the sport of fishing, sometimes you catch them and sometimes you don’t. The water condition this day was clear and the temperature was 36 degrees.

We made the most out of the day regardless of our lack of spotting fish. It was a beautiful day out and I was glad to be out in nature, I was definitely having withdrawals. We saw wild turkeys, bald eagles, whitetail deer and other misc wild life while we traversed down the Pere Marquette river.

I was also grateful to have the opportunity to learn how to "hot shot" with plug lures, which was a new experience for me, since I mainly fly fish. I was writing down notes as I learned with a note pad and lip liner (since I could not find a pen) - thank gosh I am a girly-girl.

All in all, our day was good out on the river, even though we did not catch any fish.  Over a glass of whine,  I informed Mike about my new breast cancer awareness lure project and who I am working with and he told me about the many exciting improvements that he is planning on for his Marsh Ridge River Guide Service. We had a relaxing day out in nature, not too hot, not too cold…I was dressed just right. There is something about being out in a river that is serene and magical to me.

(Mike and I relaxing with a glass of whine)

I have heard that they are going to shut down the Lamprey barrier in Custer in the spring of 2010 which will turn the steelhead spawning run back to normal and in turn all of us anglers should see more fish.

The Lamprey barrier is an electric current that runs across the river, which will kill the fish if they cross over it, so they have to take an alternative route and go down a small channel which slows there journey down for many weeks.

We all know that within the sport of fishing, it can be hit or miss on a daily excursion, but that is just par for the course…I will have better luck next time :-)

(she's so fly, Sherri Russell and my friend, river guide Mike Marsh being goofy)

Tight lines and fun times,

Sherri Russell, editor



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