Winter Duldrums

February 27th, 2009

This is by far the most difficult fishing of the year-cold clear water conditions have been present for months & fish just aren’t interesting in eating much.  Ice has moved back in on the big pond, so offshore options are gone for now. Good opportunities for some cool pictures of the rivers in winter mode-but not so good of fishing! I am sure ready for Spring, my arsenal of fly boxes are more stocked than ever right now I think!  It seems every Winter that the anticipation for Spring grows even stronger.  I can only explain it to be like a child at Christmas time, but instead of a wrapped present it’s a chrome Steel on the other end of the line.

Stop by Colton Bay Outfitters in Ann Arbor, Mi March 5 @ 6 pm-we will be presnting a slide show on fly fishing here in Michigan’s U.P..  It is always a good time to sit back & chat about the upcmoing season!

A few dates open for Spring Steelhead-guaranteed to be more fun than your day job!

Open Water

February 16th, 2009

The warmer weather and heavy winds moved a large amount of ice out that has been present on near shore Lake Superior waters-this opened up some good early season opportunies.  Aggresive Salmonids are present when conditions like this exist in mid Winter-good baitfish amounts are present & these fish take advantage of the situation!  It isn’t to often in February when one can venture out onto the big water!  Rivers have risen with the warmer temps but have quickly went back to their prior state with the cold evenings we have had the past few days.  Steelhead and resident Trout are present-good presentations in slow Winter water has been productive.  The warm weather brought out more anglers that have been stewing around the house for months with the cold temps, so fish have gotten a bit more educated.

Can you feel it?  Spring-coming soon!

Atlantic Salmon and Lake Superior State University

February 10th, 2009

The post below is for Lake Superior State University, without this institution we would have no such thing as Atlantic Salmon here in Michigan’s U.P. and beyond.  Many of us are blessed to be able to take part in this great fishery, below you will find some facts/interesting information pertaining to the St.Marys River Atlantic Salmon.  Thank you to Lake Superior State University and everyone associated with the Aquatic Research Lab!

In1977, Lake Superior State University (LSSU) opened the Aquatic Research Laboratory (ARL).  With only $1,000, donated materials, and space provided by Edison Sault Electric Company, the drive and vision of Dr. Gale Gleason and the students of LSSU created the ARL to raise fish and study water resources. When reliving the times, Gleason commented, “I didn’t get any money.  I didn’t even get to fish, but I loved it.”
Over the years, the ARL has expanded in its vision and mission.  More than 1,000 people a year visit the ARL, and thousands more view the FishCam to see what fish are swimming in the St. Marys River.  Since the ARL’s humble beginning over 1.5 million fish have been stocked into regional waters, leading to what is becoming a world-renowned Atlantic salmon fishery.  Over one million dollars in grants were brought into the lab for fish culture and water quality research, and hundreds of students have received hands-on training in fisheries and aquatic sciences.

But the ARL has outgrown its current facility. Fortunately, Edison Sault Electric has donated a 16,000-square-foot, three-story, historic building which allow the ARL to nearly quintuple its present size and modernize its facilities to enhance undergraduate training and education at LSSU.  “We are very excited about this building and the opportunities it will open for us,” commented Roger Greil, who has managed the ARL for 18 years.

But the ARL needs your support with the renovation.  The expansion will allow the ARL to expand its fish hatchery, to add a state-of-the-art fish health laboratory, to construct a visitor center and discovery room with interactive displays, and to provide more resources for training the next generation of fisheries and aquatic stewards and researchers. Annual fishing expenditures in Michigan are over $1.6 billion, and combined with fisheries and wildlife watching, generate nearly $3 billion for Michigan’s economy and support over 25,000 jobs.  Whether you are an Atlantic salmon angler or concerned about improving Michigan’s economic stability, a donation to the ARL is an investment in our future.

To help support the ARL, please consider a donation (make sure to specify the Aquatic Research Laboratory in the “Other” box).

Relief is in the Forecast

February 4th, 2009

Fluctuating temps have helped out to free up some of the ice conditions-the forecast over the next 5 days is looking like finally we are going to get our thaw!  After record low temps, this warm up should cause a slight thaw which may bring up water levels are very minor bit.  Maybe if we are lucky it could trigger a couple new fish into the rivers.  Currently there is a ton (nearly 200 inches) of snow in the woods & this Spring there is going to be lots of runoff which is great for fishing/overall health of our watersheds.  Spring Steelhead is just around the corner-give the U.P. a try this year, an adventure unlike any other Steelheading in the midwest region! Please check out our 2009 newsletter for info on guided outings!

Ice-Not So Nice

February 1st, 2009

As the Winter continues the challenge to find open water grows-temps this past week were well below zero @ night, so even more rivers have become unfishable.  Steelhead and Trout are present, but they are safe for the time being hiding under ice!  On a positive note, it is currently 30 degrees outside which should help possibly break up some of the ice.  Winter is a great time of the year to get out on the water, virtually no one ventures far from easy access areas and you can find yourself breaking trail on section of water that hasn’t been fished since Fall.  You may break a sweat as you post hole through 4 feet of snow, but it sure beats vegetating on the lazy boy.  Please check out our 2009 newsletter, good dates open for each outing-free pastie if you book this week! HA!