Walleye mission gone Bad?
I had a little time to spend on the water this afternoon. With a front rolling in , and a mandate from my wife for a fish dinner, I decided that it would be a good chance to out and catch a few spring walleye. Everything was looking good, and on my first cast had what felt like a typical walleye bite. Much to my surprise, when I set the hook, the little jigging rod doubled over and the water exploded-not very Walter like. Ended up being a beautiful female brown trout, about 5 lbs. Not what I was looking for but a very nice distraction. Three casts later the same thing happened again, this time a male that went just under 8lbs on the boga. A couple more casts and yet an even larger brown that came unpinned at the net. To describe this in one word, it was disgusting. In twenty minutes, I was fortunate enough to hook more trophy trout than most fishermen would in an entire year, yet I was dissappointed. I had failed to bring home the bacon so to speak. Mama didn't care how spectacular the fish I caught were, she had her heart set on fresh walleye. What do you do?
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The weather is still amazing, and the steelhead are still accomodating. As is to be expected, fishing pressure is high for this time of year. This has led to some feast or famine fishing. However, when the bite is on it has been fantastic. Fish have been feeding on caddis and stonefly nymphs, and the stonefly bite should continue to take center stage as the sun comes out and warms the waters.
Wade holds a bright hen from this afternoon.
Finally, the annual facelift on the boat is complete. It took a little while, but after a short shakedown cruise yesterday, it seems to have been well worth it. Nothing like starting out the spring season with a freshly spruced up boat.
Paul and I slipped out for an afternoon on the water, and we were not disappointed. Fishing seems to be just as good as it was when I put the boat in drydock. We landed a number of fresher looking steelhead, and Paul caught a couple of dandy post spawn browns.
Steelhead are spread throughout the system, with the concentration being the highest in the upper stretches towards the dam. Water levels are up a little for this time of year and perfect for fishing. With the forcast calling for above average temperatures, fishing opportunities should be plentiful throughout February.
Having grown up in Newaygo, Nathan Hulst has been catching Steelhead and Salmon for over 25 years.