Area ice anglers trying to find the most productive spots

REED CITY  — The Department of Natural Resources reminds fishermen that large and smallmouth bass season closed on all waters of the state on Dec. 31. The DNR anticipates fishermen should be ice fishing through the holiday season.

In Osceola County, fishing reportedly has been very productive.

“They’re catching fish all over,” said Jolyn Hildabridle of The Eyes Have It shop in LeRoy.   “They’ve been doing good on all the lakes around here.”

Anglers have been catching bluegills, panfish, perch and walleyes, she added.

People are fishing, and her fishing equipment and bait store has been busy, Hildabridle said, but if the snow can stay away, good fishing will continue, she added.

“They’ve been doing really good out there, on Rose Lake especially,” Hildabridle said. “There’s good walleyes out there.”

In Lake County, Casey Hefferan of the Pere Marquette River Lodge in Baldwin said steelhead fishing remains very successful.

“There’s a lot of steelhead in the river,” Hefferan said. “It’s been kind of cold. You have to be a little bit crazy to be fishing this time of year. I (had) a trip to do on Thursday. I haven’t been fishing in a week. The last time I went out I did pretty good. I hooked a handful of steelhead and caught a couple and did pretty good with the brown trout.”

Hefferan likes the fishing potential in future weeks.

“The fish are here and I don’t think they’re going anywhere,” he said. “I’m really impressed with the number of fish I see every time I put the boat on the water. The cold weather has them holding still. Getting them to bite is another story. There’s still fish out there.”

The Pere Marquette River has had reports of slow fishing from the DNR with fishermen still taking some nice steelhead and brown trout.