Muskegon River Fishing Report – September 17, 2017 – Newaygo, Michigan
The Muskegon river fishing report for mid September on the Muskegon river near Newaygo, Michigan is about the change of seasons on the “Mighty Mo”.
As days get shorter, nights are “supposed to” get colder, leaves change, river temperatures drop and we see the onset of our fall Chinook Salmon run. Most of these are true, except for colder water temperature, as the atypically warm weather we’ve had as of late and forecasted for the next week has kept and will keep, water temperatures higher than normal for this time of fall.
Some salmon are in the river system, but likely came in when water temperatures in the river and lake Michigan were a bit cooler, so they’ll go into a holding pattern of sorts until conditions improve. We saw a gradual decline in river temps starting around the first of the month that continued for a week+, but it has since reversed and now temps are on the rise.
Smallmouth bass are still a very viable option though, as they’re on the front end of a time in the fall when they put on the feedbag, in preparation for the colder months ahead. With present conditions, trout fishing will be fair at best, not much for hatches right now….maybe in another week or so when conditions improve.
Much of my fishing over the past few weeks has been on the Pere Marquette river, in pursuit of their migratory Chinook salmon. We’re fishing closer to Ludington than Baldwin, trying to get fresh fish to chase down our lures or take what bait has been floated under bobbers. Not much to be had with fly gear, but having a large, attention getting streamer on board with a light sink tip is in order this time of year, in case we come across a pack of new fish, that have yet to see anything like these stripped in front of them.
With both fly fishing and light spin tackle equipment, we’ll be getting after Chinook salmon and fall steelhead on the Muskegon river from October – early January. Starting with salmon in another 10 days-2 weeks, we’ll see peak numbers of salmon in the river in October and right on their tails will be fall steelhead, from late October through the New Year.
Not to be neglected are the resident Rainbow and Brown trout, who will be eager to post up behind spawning salmon and gobble up the eggs and insects that get kicked up during the salmon spawning process.
Present water temperature on the Muskegon river in the 66-67 degree range.