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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, weather looks crappy all over this weekend so I am going to load up the drift boat and head north tonight. Going to float the Pere Marquette on saturday and then the Muskegon on sunday. We will be throwing flies and since this will be my first time trout fishing this late in the summer I was looking for some info from you fly guys. If I remember right this time of year is hopper season fished with nymph droppers. Also some hatches of BWO's and caddis. What about streamers?? Will they still work this late in the summer? Any info would be appreciated.

Looks like some thunderstorms and rain up there all weekend but the rain doesn't bother me and there won't be 4 ft rollers on the river!
 

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I'd love to throw some advice your way, but I've not fished the PM for probably 12 years and I haven't tied a dry or cast anything less than a 8 wt for probably 8 years....I'm no help.
 

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Hoppers should be good, as well as all the terrestrials. Streamers will always be good, as its hard to get the big boys to hit hoppers during the day. I generally use droppers this time of year, Hoppers are GREAT strike indicators. Good luck up there, alot of big browns lurk in that river.
 

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i work every weekend for the forest service exclusively on the pm. what stretch are planning on floating. shoot me a pm and i will respond before i head up there tonight. i cover from 37 to indian bridge.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
QUOTE(outsider @ Aug 7 2009, 02:47 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>i work every weekend for the forest service exclusively on the pm. what stretch are planning on floating. shoot me a pm and i will respond before i head up there tonight. i cover from 37 to indian bridge.

PM sent.
 

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Streamers are always a good bet, try blue&silver flash, black with white&silver flash. Brown and black stoneflies are always worth a try. Egg sucking leeches are always go getters.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Here is the report...

Saturday morning we got up to torential downpour. Got on the Pere Marquette by about 7 am in a downpour. The rain would slow down for a minute and then it would downpour for another hour. I have fished in some rain before but that was the longest downpour I had seen in a long time.. At one point the water in the bottom of my drfit boat was about ankle deep! Bailed her out and kept on going until the rain stopped later in the afternoon. Right on queue, the "canoe hatch" took off and we worked some holes waiting for the canoers to move on. We did nothing but strip streamers and caught fish about everywhere we stopped and worked the water. Rolled quite a few fish and saw some others that came for a look and then retreated back to cover. We had a good day, never saw another fishing boat on the water and only 1 other fisherman all the way through the fly water. Highlight of the day was my buddy bringing a brown to hand that was estimated at 18-20 inches. Didn't measure it but it was definately his biggest brown ever to date. Snapped a coupel pics and got him back in the water. Late in the day the sun came out and the humidity was cranking. Created a fog on the river that at times was hard to see where you were going in the boat. I have a few pics and will post when I get them off my camera.

Sunday we floated the muskegon. Caught numerous 7-8 inch rainbows and browns on drys. They seemed to like the small elk hair caddis flies and took a couple on a hopper and dropper rig on a small hares ear nymph. By late morning the wind was cranking and made throwing flies rather difficult on small 5 weight rods. Finished the day just rowing and casting streamers, but not much luck on the streamers. Seemed most of the "catching" was early on and then it really slowed down. All in all, a fun trip with good company. It is always nice to get back to my roots and do a little river fishing!

Jordan, thanks for the info, unfortunately I didn't get your PM until last night. Did you see anyone else fishing the stretch of river that you were working???
 

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Gotta love when the canoe hatch comes off! I haven't been flyfishing nearly as much this year, but reading your report is giving me the itch! 18-20 is HUGE for a river fish, they fight like mad and always know how to use the current.
 

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We went up to the Muskegon river a few weeks back, near Newaygo. It was so funny ... kinda : ( . We were wading and fishing all kinds of flys up and down the river. We seen alot of suckers but few trout. So while we were fishing at the dam I was switching from my fly rod to casting with a spinner and no luck. There was this kid about 12 yrs old fishing a worm on a hook with 2 split shot about 15 inches from the hook. I had said hey there are a bunch of fish over here, thinking it would be fun for him to just catch some suckers, and so he came over and casted out into this hole I was drifting through . He was able to sit that worm at the bottom of the hole and within 5 minutes he was catching TROUT after TROUT..!!! hahaha ohhhh man that almost hurts thinking about it. No jk thats great that he was able to catch them it was just funnythat we have all this fancy equipment and he comes out there and just starts pulling them in : )
 

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I fished the AuSable Thursday thru Saturday, between Mio and McKinley. Most of the fish caught were on very small dry flies, Parachute Sulfers. I didn't have a lot of luck casting with spinners and jigs.

Draino
 

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yeah i worked all the launches. seen two guys from chicago at bowman bridge. they caught a few browns and a rainbow in the flies only water but said nothin over fifteen. i then talked to a boat at sulac later that had three or four trout on a stringer browns and one rainbow, their biggest being maybe fourteen. and they were throwing a rapala, a worm and some spinners. headed to the river myself after work catchin one ten inch rainbow and watchin about a eighteen inch brown swat and miss. the water was fast and i think most people were throwing streamers when they couldnt keep thier boats stopped. thanks for paying at gleasons. we checked compliance on sat and a huge group from ohio put their stubs in their window and threw the envelopes away. tickets were issued. i only work one more weekend up there this season.
 

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QUOTE(BCBpIV @ Aug 10 2009, 10:27 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>.... reading your report is giving me the itch! 18-20 is HUGE for a river fish, they fight like mad and always know how to use the current.

It's giving me that feeling too. Man the river just takes over you sometimes. I won't eat, sleep, drink... well ok we drink a lot but still it's one of the few times of the year I look forward to every year.

My first season was last season, and we were up on the pm for steelies. I hook into my first sizable fish (my first actual fish was a bow yearling about 30 minutes before) and get it netted by the time my bro Jack shows up and let's me know that

1) that the brown I caught was a trophy

and

2) They were still out of season for a couple weeks...
damnit!

21.75" on my handy pocket tape. A number I hope I never forget so I can get a replica made:

Water Water resources People in nature Watercourse Bank


Glasses Vertebrate Sunglasses Salmon-like fish Cap


I know I know, I need to learn how to hold fish...

Great report Casey. Glad you got into em. I haven't floeated the muskegon yet but I will soon.

I got some questions tho:

What's a canoe hatch?

What kinda boat do you float?

Again bro, great report.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
QUOTE(fish n chicks @ Aug 11 2009, 10:59 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>QUOTE(BCBpIV @ Aug 10 2009, 10:27 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>.... reading your report is giving me the itch! 18-20 is HUGE for a river fish, they fight like mad and always know how to use the current.

It's giving me that feeling too. Man the river just takes over you sometimes. I won't eat, sleep, drink... well ok we drink a lot but still it's one of the few times of the year I look forward to every year.

My first season was last season, and we were up on the pm for steelies. I hook into my first sizable fish (my first actual fish was a bow yearling about 30 minutes before) and get it netted by the time my bro Jack shows up and let's me know that

1) that the brown I caught was a trophy

and

2) They were still out of season for a couple weeks...
damnit!

21.75" on my handy pocket tape. A number I hope I never forget so I can get a replica made:

View attachment 65268

View attachment 65270

I know I know, I need to learn how to hold fish...

Great report Casey. Glad you got into em. I haven't floeated the muskegon yet but I will soon.

I got some questions tho:

What's a canoe hatch?

What kinda boat do you float?

Again bro, great report.


That is an awesome brown brother! I remember when you posted that pic before and I was in awe. The "canoe hatch" starts in the summer and goes through early fall. You usually hear them coming from way up stream and and you know they are real close when the Budweiser cans start floating by.
Get off the water as quick as you can or keep moving because it won't be long before they are on top of you and swimming in the hole you are fishing. I am sure you get the idea.....
I have a Hyde low profile that I run on the river.

Here are a couple of pics from the weekend... This is my buddy with the nice sized brown that hit a streamer out of a dark hole.
Water Plant Vertebrate Tree Goggles


This is what we caught on the Muskegon, no trophys but fun on a little 3 weight rod. All fish we caught that day seemed to be from the same mold.
Fish Food Fin Ray-finned fish Tail


Here are a few shots drifting down the PM near the end of the day when the fog was coming off the river after all the rain we got.
Water Atmosphere Plant Sky Liquid


I liked this one...

Water Water resources Automotive tire Nature Sky
 

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QUOTE(kayceedee @ Aug 11 2009, 10:35 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I liked this one...

View attachment 65275

That is a great pic KC. Dude that fog can not look crazier. glad your camera captured it.

btw the canoe hatch had me laughing for minutes. Makes a whole lotta sense now. Guess I never thought about it cause there ain't nobody swimming in that river when there's 8 inches of snow on the banks!

Awesome pics and thanks for taking us for the ride. We still gotta get some eyes together soon too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
QUOTE(outsider @ Aug 10 2009, 08:52 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>yeah i worked all the launches. seen two guys from chicago at bowman bridge. they caught a few browns and a rainbow in the flies only water but said nothin over fifteen. i then talked to a boat at sulac later that had three or four trout on a stringer browns and one rainbow, their biggest being maybe fourteen. and they were throwing a rapala, a worm and some spinners. headed to the river myself after work catchin one ten inch rainbow and watchin about a eighteen inch brown swat and miss. the water was fast and i think most people were throwing streamers when they couldnt keep thier boats stopped. thanks for paying at gleasons. we checked compliance on sat and a huge group from ohio put their stubs in their window and threw the envelopes away. tickets were issued. i only work one more weekend up there this season.


Outsider, sorry I missed your post here earlier. Thanks again for the info. The water did come up fast and was getting dirty fast! It especially got bad once we got past where the Baldwin dumps in. Above it wasn't too bad. No problem on paying for the pass, I assume you spotted my truck? Although it is getting hard to keep up with everything needed these days.... parking passes, boat passes, open water, closed water, etc.... It would be great if you guys could allow for the purchasing of these online somewhere. We had a heck of a time getting our float pass! BBT ended up going and picking it up for us on friday afternoon and leaving it in our room. Lucky we got a room there or how else would we have gotten one? I would think there would be more compliance if they were more readily available. Would a yearly sticker be good for all access points on the PM? I know when fishing the Big Manistee I would have to get one pass at the dam and then get another pass for when I took out at High Bridge... that is a little rediculous...
Good job on the trout, sounds like we had a decent day in comparison to most others out there fishing. Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
QUOTE(fish n chicks @ Aug 12 2009, 04:35 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>KCD you mentioned a yearly pass... isn't that supposed to go into effect next year? Where we all pay through our taxes and then there will be no more passes, just resident and non resident?

That would be great and I would be all for it. I was actually just referring to the parking areas where you have to have at least a daily parking pass but I believe that you can also purchase them for the year. I remember when I was actually doing a lot of river fishing and I had about 4 different stickers on my windshield, got to be a pain in the butt keeping up with everything.

This is a totally different rant, but I first fished the PM back when you could go during prime season and maybe see a few other fisherman on the water and you might see 1-2 boats go down in a day. Fly fishing got popular when Redford did "A River Runs Through It" and the first place people flocked was to the "flies only section of river. Orvis then jumped in and started the Orvis lodge and started advertising nationally, this in my opinion was the demise of the fishery as I knew it back then. I am sure it was great for the local economy and it was even better for the ones who became guides on the river, but for the average Joe fisherman like me, it was becoming a combat zone. Unfortunately, everyone and their brother became a guide on the river and pretty soon we were playing bumper boats going down the river. It even got difficult to find places to fish. Guides were hiring people to sit on holes so they had good water to fish when they brought clients down, this is not fact but what many believe to be true. The guides then started lobbying for restrictions and were complaining about the lamprey weir, the runs of fish and for more management. Well I think it is exactly what they got and it is a perfect example of being careful what you ask for. Now there are only so many boats allowed on the river during peak times and I am sure the guides get first crack at these permits which leaves a guy like me sitting on shore scratching his head. It seems that the guides are understandably only concerned about regs that will bring clients back and for them to have a place to fish but what about the rest of us? I see the PM someday becoming a managed, pay to fish river like what they have out west and in parts of England. Maybe Outsider can add some more fact, fiction or opinion on this as I would be interested in hearing his perspective.....
 

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QUOTE(Draino @ Aug 10 2009, 12:30 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I fished the AuSable Thursday thru Saturday, between Mio and McKinley. Most of the fish caught were on very small dry flies, Parachute Sulfers. I didn't have a lot of luck casting with spinners and jigs.

Draino

I was fishing under the 33 bridge on sunday. No luck with spinners either, but there guys flyfishing, didn't see anyone catch anything though.
 
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