Winds and Thunderstorms

Have made this past week a bad one for chartering. Three out of five days were canceled. When safety becomes the issue, we pull the plug on big lake trips.
The good news is that the two trips that went out were VERY successful. The smallmouth only trip rendered 45 smallmouth for one fisherman in about 4.5 hours. Several big fish in the mix.
The day we sought laker trout for the grill, it was as good as I’ve seen it. After sorting through 17 lakers in a couple of hours we picked four perfectly sized for our limits. Add a king salmon to the catch and we had some filets! We then had time to fish for smallies to fill out the morning. 15 to 20 caught in less than two hours.
In spite of the weather, they are on. Fun stuff but the weather can be frustrating.aug 22 011

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It is August and…….

the smallmouth are cooperating more than most would folks would believe. It is very likely that 50 fish in a half-day will be hooked with several over 18″. Already in the first five trips in August, we have several over 20″.
This has started as the busiest August we have had, but we still find folks who think we experience “the dog days of summer”. Not here!
From homemade, hand-tied Missouri finesse jigs to the time-tested dropshot, the smallies are accessible. Recent guests have described this as the best smallmouth fishing they have seen.
There are several good guides in this area who couldAug9 001

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The Past Two Weeks Have Been Good but

the last 6 days have been very special. Big numbers with quality fish. The average size is up from last year and the numbers are close to unbelievable. Several baits would work but the homemade, hand-tied finesse jig has been the difference maker. Today’s 80 smallmouth in five hours may be the most special of all. Congrats to Colby and Larry.july28 043

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Youngsters Steal the Show During Windy Week

We have had a couple of postponements due to weather but we have also had the enjoyment of youngsters successfully fishing the finesse jigs and drop-shots. They came in excited and left wanting more!
The threat of lightning shut us down one day and high winds affected us all week. The hot weather has not been a problem on the big water as Lake Michigan gets better each week.
We’ve said it before–the weather is our biggest obstacle. Some folks have flexible schedules that allows rescheduling. Other times we find alternative lakes sheltered from the wind.
Several dates still available for the August finesse fishing. july 15 021

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Grand Traverse Bay Beckons…

Very few bodies of water will allow a bass fisherman to enjoy his sport on possibly the busiest day of the year. Similar to the black-Friday shopping crowds, the lakes have lots of traffic.
However, we are not an inland lake, we are on the Big Lake. Plenty of room and plenty of fish.
A 5.73 lb smallie and two others over 18″ made it worthwhile for us to fish on what many call an “unfishable day”.
***Remember we do “catch-and-release” on the smallmouth bass but we do “catch-and-keep” on the walleye, cisco, perch, etc.
***We encourage braid for several reasons. Today’s reason is that the extreme sensitivity allows the angler to feel a finesse jig bite better that mono or carbon. Why is this so important?–TO AVOID DEEP HOOKING THE FISH. Be conscientious and cut down on mistakes. Go braid.july 3 007

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Big Smallies during the Post-spawn…

Two weeks of finesse fishing has really been fun. A few fish have been caught on the traditional baits but the big numbers and the big fish have come via finesse methods.

Five in the 5 lb. class this week along with many over 3 lbs. made this a very good “end of June”.

Inland lakes have been surprisingly good and the big lake has been its usual self.

Our last four groups have been Indiana fishermen and they all have been fun.

July is here and we look forward to deep clear waters of the big lake–one of our favorite times. Many folks think this time of year is not good for smallies. I don’t agree.june 30 045

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Bass, Bass and More Bass…

With an occasional walleye here and there.

So busy fishing that I have neglected our website. We eased out of the jerkbait mode and we are now into finesse jigs and other soft plastics. A couple days offered us some pretty good spinnerbait fishing.

A couple inland lakes are surprisingly hot right now and the traditional raid on the bays is happening as smallies bedding all over there. Soon it will be over and real fishing will resume.

Too many good things to mention right now. Lots going on. Don’t forget to make arrangements for a July trip. No dogdays up here!
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Midseason Report…

It has been a great start. April and May provided more six pound and more five pound smallmouth than previous years. The ice left early and we were off to the races much earlier this year. That had to help.

As we transition into a different type of fishing we have good reason to expect the same type of success. Our biggest enemy is the weather. High winds can limit our fishing choices.
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Some of the most fun we enjoy all summer will be the post spawn fishing on Lake Michigan waters. It is a nice combination of quality and quantity. Besides, after jerk-baiting all spring it is nice and relaxing to fish our finesse jig.

Not Bed-Fishing?

The balmy weather has brought out many boaters and fishermen. Many are excited because they have found beds. We have had some bedding smallmouth since May 9 but now it is accelerating during this full moon.
However, there are many more bass in the prespawn mode than there are spawners. We got the afternoon breeze we wanted and Big Al from northern Indiana had five smallies that weighed over 20 lbs.
Not only did he have big fish but he had good numbers. Prespawners equal fun!
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