Muskegon River Fishing Report – April 17, 2022 – Newaygo, Michigan

Muskegon River Fishing Report – April 17, 2022 – Newaygo, Michigan

Happy Easter !

Scott with a GREAT spring “chromer” from the Muskegon river.

The Muskegon river fishing report on this Easter Sunday is about the continued spring steelhead going on downstream from Croton hydroelectric dam north of Grand Rapids.

With unseasonably wet weather and cool air temperatures for most of “spring” up to this point, it finds the river running higher than normal and much colder than it typically is come mid April.  Click HERE for current Muskegon river water flow data.

Despite the high water and reduced visibility, there are steelhead in the river on their annual spawning run and more coming in from lake Michigan.  Even though our overall 2022 steelhead run numbers are lower than in years past, there are still some great fish to be caught….and there are a few really big ones that have and likely will, come to the net before the spring steelhead season wraps up.

How long the Muskegon river steeelhead run goes is often tied to weather and river conditions.  If we have cooler weather along with some rains to keep levels up a bit, it can go well into May.  Click HERE for current and forecasted weather for the Newaygo, Michigan area.

With both fly fishing and conventional equipment such as spinning and bait cast reels matched to longer rods, we’re targeting deeper troughs and runs for both pre-spawn steelhead and “dropbacks”, those that have already spawned out and have “dropped back” off spawning grounds and feed before heading back to lake Michigan.

With such extreme differences in our west Michigan weather from last spring to this one, it’s literally a coin toss as to how long the run will go and when we’ll get back to more “near normal” river and weather conditions.

Not long after the steelhead complete their spring run, spawn and migration back to lake Michigan and we’ll be into the onset of our prime dry fly fishing time for resident Brown and Rainbow trout on the Muskegon river.  Shortly after that comes to an end in late June, it’s right into our second longest “season” of river fishing, the 8+ weeks of Smallmouth Bass, Northern Pike and Walleye fishing on the Muskegon, Grand and possibly even the Kalamazoo river, if conditions come together for the Kalamazoo to fish good.

Should anyone be looking to get out for a few hours of walk in-wade fishing on their own, on any of the west Michigan rivers to hold migratory fish such as steelhead, or resident trout, bass, etc., and you would like a report or suggestion on when/where/what, feel free to call or email – 616-560-3195. 

Good fishing !!!

Jeff