April 18th, 2019 | Spring Rains
Lots of rain lately. And snow. And any combination of the two. Typical weather for this time of year, but it seems reluctant to warm up. Thankfully the weather looks really nice next week, with temps in the mid 60's nearly everyday. It should improve everything; fish, bugs, plants, people's moods, etc etc.
The snowstorm on Sunday took the entire state by surprise. Most people were expecting a nice little dusting, but we ended up receiving a full on blizzard, with some places getting over 14". Pretty tough to deal with, especially when just last weekend it was 72 degrees. We had to drive back to Grand Rapids that day, and it took us nearly 6 hours to get back from Grayling. The roads were awful. If you were out driving that day, I'm sure you can attest to that.
The Steelhead run is past peak, although there have been rumors of another push in certain rivers. But aside from that, most of the fish in the streams are spawning, and turning around to head back home to Lake Michigan. Not to say the steelhead season is over, quite the opposite. There are plenty of fish around still to make a weekend fun and action packed, but most of the fish are spawning with a few fresh ones around. Hard to say if we will receive more steelhead, but we've heard there is another cluster of them heading up right now. At any rate, there will most likely be lingering spawners and dropbacks well into May.
Matt got into a nice little fun sized steel.
Ross of Tailwater Charters has been putting fish in the boat.
Best flies have been Nuke Eggs with orange cores, and salmon fry. They will also eat a well placed streamer. Color is not so important, but finding a fish that is aggressive and hormonal is key.
The Grand River has a mix of fresh and winter fish, with allegedly another batch of chrome fish headed our way. Again, hard to say what will happen, but by next week we will see for sure.
The Muskegon has been inconsistent lately, with fish scattered here and there. It's been fishing well, but nothing like it should in mid April. Everyone is hoping for another final push, which may or may not happen.
The Pere Marquette has plenty of steelhead, most of which are spawning and dropping back. But we did hear of another wave of them inbound, so perhaps by next week the fly water will get a reload of chrome.
The Manistee has been doing just fine, with steelhead everywhere. Same thing, seems like most fish are in and spawning, but another pulse of fish is possible.
Most of us are officially switching gears to trout nowadays, and things have been quite good. Mostly on streamers, but also on small Czech nymphs and eggs behind spawners. There are so many options right now, and once it warms up and gets the bugs active, things will really start to ramp up. Streamer season is here, and can be a productive way to hunt for those larger trout. Most of the time it provides a couple decent fish, and some nice chases. But on those rare days where all the conditions are right, it can be magical.
Tightline and Czech nymphing has been great, and is a productive method all season. We will be holding a Euro Nymphing 101 class at our GR Shop May 1st at 6pm, call or email firstname.lastname@example.org to RSVP. Czech out some of our euro nymphing set ups and consider adding one to your collection this spring.
Next week, starting on April 25th, the Grand Rapids shop will have a full lineup of demo items from Scott, Echo, Ross and Abel Reels. A large amount of their lineup of rods and reels will be in our shop for all y'all to check out, along with some in store specials on gear. Come cast a rod, look at a new reel, and get a feel for their stuff. Top quality gear, well worth looking into. Starts on Thursday April 25th, and runs through Saturday the 26th.
Things are looking good for the season. Stop in and get geared up for the weekend. Thanks for the support!