Anglers excited with prospects

REED CITY - It's October, but anglers are expecting a nice month.

In Mecosta County, Vic Havens at Frank Sporting Goods in Morley, reports anglers are catching a lot of perch and walleye in the river. One angler caught a 15 ½-inch perch. Anglers have also been catching jumbos by the Newaygo State Park.

Anglers at Frankfort reported a few Chinook in the bay and between the pier heads, but most Chinook have entered the river. Platte Bay was producing fresh coho the DNR said.

Bill Labelle at the Frankfort Tackle Box said not many anglers have been on the bay recently but there has been success in area lakes and rivers.

"There's not a lot of people fishing right now," Dewey Buchner, at Don's Sporting Goods said. "They're mostly at Tippy Dam. At the Manistee River, they're getting a lot of salmon."

The DNR reported shelf out to 200 feet of water had produced a few coho and small Chinook on spoons in Manistee.

Pier anglers and boats trolling the harbor were catching freshwater drum and a few dark salmon. Silver worked best for catching freshwater drum off the piers, the DNR added.

"It's going pretty good," Rob Eckerson of Pappy's Bait Store in Wellston said. "We have fish on gravel below Tippy Dam. Water temp was 61, the last I knew. We're a low flow. The bright skies have made the day time fishing a little though. Others are fishing for panfish at Portage Lake and Manistee Lake as well."

A few coho and small Chinook were caught off Sable Point on spoons, the DNR said.

Cory Houser at Captain Chuck's in Ludington said anglers are catching fish 12 miles off shore with a mixed bag of steelhead, 2 and 3 year olds. There have been some cohos.

"I haven't heard too much on inland pike and panfish report or walleye," Houser said. "Everybody is going after the salmon in the river.

At Petoskey, the DNR said there were a couple of good runs of salmon in the Bear River, but fishing has been inconsistent. Anglers were catching Chinook and coho mainly from the dam downstream, the DNR said.

Anglers were using flies, artificial single eggs and spawn in the river. Anglers were also catching a few Chinook and coho at the mouth of the river and off of the ends of the piers.

Anglers were using spawn bags and skein near the river and casting stick baits and spoons off the piers. Bright colors and glow spoons/lures were working best off the piers and docks in Petoskey near sunset and sunrise and overnight.

Fishing Tip: Go "hunting" for fish this fall

Courtesy of the Michigan DNR

Autumn can be one of the best times of year to seek out your favorite fish species for a day of fun angling. Several species to target this October and November include walleye, perch and trout.

Walleye are thought to be in their best condition in the fall and often can be found in the river mouth areas of larger, inland lakes. They're gathering there to take advantage of baitfish that like to hang out as the weather cools off. Set your sights on 10-to-12 feet deep to find these guys.

Perch also populate around these same river mouths, but these fish likely will be much closer to the river than walleye. Check out depths as shallow as 4 feet to find them.

Trout, available in some of these larger lakes during this time as well, can be found in the same areas as walleye and perch.

Try your luck at some great fishing this fall. For more information on the numerous autumn opportunities, visit