Muskegon River Fishing Report – January 22, 2018 – Newaygo, MI
The Muskegon river fishing report for January 22, 2018 in the Newaygo, MI area is about the return of unseasonably warm and wet weather for late January ! After our last big thaw a couple weeks ago, we had more typical mid-January weather return to west Michigan and put a fresh blanket of snow on the ground across the state. This is apparently short lived, as warmer weather has returned and is bringing a LOT of rain with it and we’ll inevitably see snow melt and likely see some changes to river levels with this melt.
Once things settle down in a few days, we’ll get back to fishing and we have both resident Brown and Rainbow trout, along with migratory steelhead that are wintering over in the river, as fish to pursue in the weeks ahead.
With both fly fishing and light spin tackle equipment, we focus our fishing efforts on likely holding spots for both trout and steelhead. As we get further into winter, fish will continue to key in on smaller offerings of flies, egg patterns and streamers.
Water temperatures are holding around the 35-36 degree mark, so although a bit lethargic, fish will continue to eat and it’s up to us to put our “offering” close to them, as they’re not likely to move much for food in such water temperatures.
With February right around the corner, many peoples thoughts begin to shift to warmer weather and more river fishing opportunities. Due to a sub par fall steelhead season, we’re anticipating our spring run to be a good one. We will likely see our first good push of new fish out of lake Michigan and into the Muskegon river when we have a combination of rising river levels and temperatures. This typically occurs when we have more of an extended weather pattern that’s conducive to BOTH rising river levels and rising water temperature, which has historically been around St. Patty’s day. That being said, all we’ll need to see is a small change to bring new steelhead in, so this “start” date couple be a little earlier.
Not to be forgotten are the resident Rainbow and Brown trout, who will provide our much sought after dry fly fishing starting anywhere from late May to early June, depending on weather and river conditions. Starting with our early black Stone fly hatches, followed by Caddis, then Sulphurs and right behind them, Gray Drakes. Considered by many to be the best hatch-spinner fall on the Muskegon river, the Gray Drakes bring out the biggest trout in the river, for easy meals on the surface. The pre-dusk spinner fall can provide some of the most frantic dry fly fishing in Michigan !
I have limited open dates for both mid March – mid May steelhead, as well as late May – late June trout fishing. If either are on your spring and early summer fishing wish list, please touch base sooner than later to check availability.