Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Steelhead About Ready To Go

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Got a hankering to go steelhead fishing? If so, get some spawn bags tied up, clean up your reels, find the net and check your waders.

After the recent warm spell, the fish are about ready to head upstream. A check of the Betsie and Platte rivers today, and the Boardman River yesterday, indicate that some (a few) fish are up the rivers. The Betsie River is high, but not over the banks, from the old Homestead dam down to US-31. That is the best bet so far.

The Platte River, normally gin clear, is a bit high and has a light tinge of color to it. The Boardman River is about the same. A warm rain would put fish in all three nearby rivers in a matter of hours. What we don’t need is an over-the-bank flooding because the fish can move in, spawn during high water and be gone before the water level goes down.

The water is cold, and whatever you choose to use should be fished as slowly and thoroughly as possible. Spawn bags and wigglers are the bait of choice but wax worms fished on a small teardrop jig and under a bobber can be deadly. Fish all live bait right down along bottom, and probe all potential holding locations from as many different positions as possible.

One or two casts usually doesn’t work. Sometimes an angler can fish a hole or run for an hour before the presentation is dead perfect, and the fish may or may not hit. Cold water makes steelhead lethargic, but persistence can pay off.

It’s a short blog tonight. Tune in again tomorrow night.

Posted by Dave Richey on 03/17 at 09:22 PM
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