October, November, and December

Salmon Spawning

Manistee Steelhead

Late Nov Coho
Manistee Lk. 11/29/10

12/1/10 1st Snow
3 inches


Past Results

12/31/10  Another heads-up on the trophy Steelhead photo that graces today's edition.  If you have old 35mm negatives and they hold a meaning for you?  Then its important to preserve your old negatives.  Decent quality negative scanners have came way down in price.  My old photo prints/negatives are fading badly.  Salvaged the giant Steelhead picture and had to use photo editing software to enhance the sharpness & color.  Making the image not perfect like it once was, but still useable.
              Shelf life on film and negatives, especially color is finite.  How long old images hold their quality depends a lot on storage and that doesn't mean a shoe box.
                On of the things appreciated about digital images is the developing is always the same.  In the film days, ...image quality depended a lot on who developed your film.
  Talk at ya next year and thanks for visiting this website!

12/30/10  Let's travel back in time 26 years to one of my more memorable events.  The setup is Valentine's Day 1984 just below Homestead Dam on Frankfort, MI's Betsie River.  A mid-winter thaw was happening and the word was out, "the Betsie was hot!"
               I was just entering my second year in the charter business and learned always to pack a camera along to capture special moments in time.
               That day we had the boots on.  Waders were necessary to move down the river to land any good Steelhead much over 8 pounds.  Anyone who's seen the fast water spilling over the face of Homestead Dam knows the reason for the boots.
                Just a few yards downstream of fishing our spot  ...an angler who's name is lost to time landed an enormous Steelhead at 26 pounds and change.  This fish was a massive beast and made the 17 he'd already caught ...look insignificant.
               I caught a 12 and my buddy took a nice buck Steelhead a few ounces the other side of 16 pounds.  Nothing to the magnitude of the hogasaur 26 pounder and the 2 fish stringer of Steel at 43 pounds!  Click hog stinger of a 17 & 26 lb. Steelhead
               Incidentally, my/this photo was published in color in the then Great Lakes Fisherman Magazine.  Forerunner of the Great Lakes Angler magazine of nowadays.

12/29/10  Yesterday's 7/26/10 story about full moon fishing story needs to be expanded:
                    With only one foray into the realm of night fishing I did spot a need for a flashlight to be taped to the net.  You ain't lived ...until you spear at a fish with a net in almost total darkness.  You kinda scoop and hope the fish is securely the net bag.
                I do have aft deck lights my boat and a transom white navigational light.  These are almost totally useless and give the water a eerie spooky glow.  Much like a scene out of a Star Trek movie in another galaxy, far, ...far away!
                Did wear a headband LED light that went around my hat that helped some.  Was kinda amazed ...if the boat had the aft lights turned off, moonlight provided enough ambient light to spot the hits on the rigger rods.
                Doing something new is big fun for yours truly.  When trying something for the 1st time it's easy to laugh mistakes, ...as we tried to conquer the darkened domain of night fishing.  Many grins and a feeling of accomplishment was riding high when we put the boat back on the trailer a little after 1am.  No boats at the ramp was a huge bonus too!

12/28/10  The setup on today's update began last July when I posted on our message board the need for a fishing partner for my 1st ever night fishing excursion.  This was done with very short notice.  That volunteer ended up being member Matt B.  I'd spoken with Matt a few times on the phone, but never met him face to face.
                 Matt had a 415 mile hike from Cleveland, OH area which is a feat in itself and  a good deal in his favor.  I don't mesh well with people that semi-like to fish, or consider it just something to do.  People that love to fish and are willing to sit on a boat for hours just waiting for a bite without whining is a horse of different color.
                 You learn a lot about a person in short order onboard any Great Lakes trolling vessel.  You learn even more when the heat is on and the action is hot and heavy.  As late dusk was transitioning into full darkness the team of just Matt and I had 4 rods go.   
                 Not all at quite once, but it required me to fight fish and steer them clear of Matt's fish.  What a nightmare, but Matt stayed cool and got with the program.  With a pile of luck on our side ...we ended boating all 4 Kings.  Click our 7/26/10 4-banger
                 This was a grand experience.  Stuff like this hadn't happened to me since my early days as a sport fisherman.  This did happen several times when I was a charter operator fishing from a larger boat with a lot more than 2 people onboard.
                 Anyways, to make a long story short, called Matt yesterday and invited him to fish with me again in 2011.  With Matt & the luck he brings I'm sure we'll do very well!  Reminiscing about the high points 2010 season brought this story to the surface again.

12/27/10  Limbo best describes this week if you're in business.  Hard to get anything accomplished with many businesses shut down this week.  This hits me especially hard, cuz it's the time to lay the groundwork/foundation for the 2011 season.
               I will be adding some new tackle if all goes according to plan.  This is not frivolous stuff either.  It's products that will make your time on the water more efficient.  More importantly so, if you do not get a lot of water time like me.
               Tomorrow chat will focus on team work required to put a good box together.  Usually, Great Lakes trolling rigs are multi person operations with 2, or more anglers.  All providing efforts towards a common goal.
                When hunting it's a solo triggerman bringing down game unassisted in most cases.  The exact opposite of shared experiences onboard Great Lakes fishing boats.

12/26/10  Hope your Christmas Holiday lived up to & beyond your expectations.  New Years is next on the list.  Bringing a new fishing season with the hope, joys & the unknown that keeps fishing interesting.  With the strong late season Oct-Nov Lk. MI fishery for Kings things look a helluva lot better on the horizon than the past couple of years.
               Best positive story on the Asian Carp situation is
a potential migration route thru Eagle Marsh by Fort Wayne, IN to the Wabash River system into the Maumee River tested negative for A-Carp DNA.  The DNRs got serious built a 1200' chain link fence in an effort hold back further intrusion into the Great Lakes water shed.  This fence is a preventive measure in case major flooding occurs.  I can see the fence doing it's job on adult A-Carps, but what about the immature A-juveniles that might swim thru?

12/25/10  Was woken from a sound sleep with the sounds of Reindeer hooves clattering on a metal roof last night.  Sprung to the window to see a chubby guy in a red suit with a contingent of construction elves building a pole barn at lightening speed.
                At first, couldn't believe my eyes?  Figured it was the second bottle of Tosti I swigged down while serenading my mentally challenged lab, Buzzy with Christmas carols. Buzz was totally not impressed and put his paws over his ears.  This told me it was time to hit the sack and see if Santa would show before Christmas morn.
               Sure enough Santa Claus showed!  Proof of this?  ...he lost hat by the side door of my new pole building.  No problem, I plan returning his hat next Christmas when he brings me my new 2011 57'
HATTERAS Enclosed Bridge Sport Fisherman!
                Further evidence is the Merry Christmas sign old St. Nick hung on the front of his handiwork while passing thru Manistee County, MI  Click for Santa's handiwork

12/24/10  I know snowflakes falling, Christmas tree lights, Santa waving, yuletide garland, scrolling banners & John Lennon's tune, "So, this is Christmas" (removed) is not suggested standard decorum for a website.  Let's break the rules & share the spirit of the season!

Here's my wish list to Santa Claus:

That you have a safe holiday
Health, wealth, and wisdom to all
Merry Christmas to everyone!

May your Christmas be as blessed as mine!

12/23/10  There's some behind the scenes reel-facts about Lake Michigan water being diverted down the Chicago River.  In turn, making the fight against Asian Carp even harder.  The fight to seal off this waterway for further Asian Carp migration into the Great Lakes watershed is about the water too.  Water being sent down the Mississippi River.  This water can then be diverted to dry SW states ...already facing a water crisis.
                There is a predicted global water shortage crisis by 2030.  The Middle East, Asia, and India are already hurting for fresh drinking water now.
                 Sitka, Alaska is moving towards selling large ocean going tankers of water to India for a penny per gallon.  I can see sharing water for humanitarian reasons, but this should be done under close scrutiny to prevent the fast buck artists from becoming rich.  Robber barons with water rights is a menace we do not want to face in the future!
                  On a much brighter front, Manistee, MI's early Lk. MI Brown Trout season is only about 3 months out.  What a wonderful way to close today's update!

12/22/10  The official start of winter was yesterday, but it began about a month ago in Manistee.  Snowfall total so far (winter 2010-2011) the way according my gauge it is 37 inches.  My gauge is the shovel used to remove it, or plow the white stuff.
              The absolute best news is today is going to be 1 second longer than yesterday! We've passed the winter solstice and can look forward to more daylight from here on in!
               To all those that invited me to be friends on Facebook, it's not that I don't want to be friends.  Its that there's no time available for me to get into kind genre.  Tackle production, monitoring our message board, shipping/processing orders and taking care of 2 websites daily eats up vast blocks of time.

12/21/10  When I checked the poll last night about sitting down to dinner with a fine platter of yummy deep fried golden brown A-Carposaurs seems not too appetizing with 94% of our visitors.  Never had a poll go over 90% in 10 years on this website.  Getting 9 out of 10 people to agree on anything is close to a miracle.
               Previous record was slightly over 70% giving the MDNR failing grades.  Let's hope the new incoming management does damage control their public image.  We all want to be proud of our respective DNRs and the jobs they do.  They made our fishery for which I thank them from the bottom of my heart!
                There's a special need to thank everyone who emailed in their comments  about the history of the Great Lakes Fishery.  Progress has been made with over 70 reel-facts and growing everyday.  Click 1st rough draft on history notes

               Tomorrow the focus will be on the selling of bulk water shipments from the US to India, Middle East and Asian countries.  Large scale tanker export is supposed to start in 6-8 months. This is just the tip of this 20 year old spear robbing the pubic domain.

12/20/10  My stupidest idea of the year award goes those that are advocating the human consumption of Asian Carp.  The species of Bighead and Silver A-Carps are seeing a huge push to become table fare in the US markets.  These fish are quite boney and have a lot of dark blood colored flesh, often referred to as a mud-vein.  Like the Common Carp we're all familiar with.  Click Asian Carp being filleted
               The worst part of the turning American palates into accepting these A-Carps?  What are we going to do when these fish are accepted as food by the American?  Farm raise them?  That would only propagate this specie further. 
               This is a slippery slope where only export, fertilizer & pet food should only be considered.  Installed a poll where you can vote if you'd eat this kind of fish.
               Need to delay this week's promised roll-out of a new flasher for 2011.  While the blades and materials are ordered, Kruger Plastic making the flashers might is a 2 to 3 week wait.   Good to see base of our manufacturing is on the rebound.

12/19/10  I receive direct info from  MI Attorney General, Mike Cox's Email list.  He is championing the cause of preventing Asian Carp from becoming a breeding, self sustaining population in the Great Lakes.  All the states in that have borders on the Great Lakes along with the Province of Ontario, except IL and IN, have signed onto this fight too.
                Only to be stymied at every turn by the federal government and the Corp of Engineers that prefer to ignore the imminent threat to our watershed.  The government's ploy has been throw millions of dollars at this problem and appoint an Asian Carp Czar. 
                Little good when the solution is simple.  Separate the Great Lakes from the Mississippi basin.  Guess simple is beyond the grasp of the powers that be!
       My Manistee snowometer total for winter 2010-2011 is now at est. 35 inches!

12/18/10  Over 70 entry's in the history of the Great Lakes Fishing project.  Came up with an idea where you can contribute your 2 cents and bring this article alive thru more eyes that just mine.  Each name, or topic can be linked to what you have to say.
                Your first name will be used and the initial of your last name to guard your privacy.  No email addresses will be posted to lock spam out of your inbox.
                It's a slippery slope mentioning spoon manufacturers.  The volume of spoons that's came & went in the past 40 some years is immense. Click rough history notes
                I did mention Streak's Chuck Cartwright, cuz he as the first to recognize and introduce an all silver, or gold plated line of spoons.  Plus, his mag, along with Northport's mag are the grandfathers of all modern day larger spoons.  GW had a large series too, but this huge task cannot get bogged down in just the history spoons. 

12/17/10  Started on the rough notes to capture the history of Great Lakes Fishing before this is lost to time.  The pioneers of our sport brought us to where we are.  Our knowledge base was built on the shoulders of those that came before us.
                In 43 years are fishing methods have evolved from zero to the probably the best deep water trollers in the world.  Click rough notes on history project.
                A device as simple as a rod holder was not in wide spread usage when I began down this wonderful road in 1968, but after seeing them ...my boat had 'em for 1969!

12/16/10  There's a need for a history of our Great Lakes Fishery.  I will start on a timeline themed account to the beginning in 1966.  Dating back the first Coho Salmon plant in Manistee County, MI's Bear Creek (tributary of the Big Manistee River) and Honor, MI's Platte River.  The MDNR's Wayne Tody and Howard Tanner were seeking a solution to stench of windrows of dead Alewives that plagued our Great Lakes coastline.
                Then, move this forward to the introduction of the Kings.  Along with who did what, with new tackle/methods that's became an fabric of our lake & river fisheries.  I will be requesting info from the readers of this website in 2011 to help confirm the facts.  This is an immense undertaking and we need to get it right. Click started rough notes
                 Plan is to include all and what they introduced that was original new   methodology.  People like Luhr Jensen, Bud Raskey, Dick Swan, Larry Crosby, George Richey, Dennis Ende, Chuck Cartwright, Mel Wantz, Jerry Bechhold, and so on.  There's a story behind all of these pioneers that needs to be shared.  If you like history that pertains directly to you? ...you'll like the future; "History of Great Lakes Fishing Part I."
                 Just about forgot to mention the new Squid Rigs page is ready to go at the webstore.  That page was a 5 hour project to build in case you're wondering about the effort that goes into this web stuff.  Click 2011 Squid Rig selections.

12/15/10  Busy installing the new Stimulus Meat Rigs in the 2 & 3 fly versions at our webstore.   This meat rig is an exact match to last August's firecracker red-hot Stimulus flasher.  The 2011 Stimulus (OCS) Meat Rig is available in the 2 and 3 fly meat rigs.  A combo Stimulus (OCS) package is in the works too. Click new Stimulus Meat Rig
                Got a good start on the new Squid Rig page with 9 complete production Squid Rigs models to chose from.  Introductory pricing is 10.95 (2 squid rigs) & 11.95 (3 Squid Rigs).  Need to publish the squid rig photos.  Then, that page is finished.  Hope to roll-out the brand new fish demolishing 2011 Squid Rig page in the very near future.
                 Squid rigs vs. meat rigs?  I'll let history decide that issue, because we've only scratched the surface with soft plastics used for big water fishing.  Reel-fact truthometer says squid rigs were never at a disadvantage.  The UV Squid Rig kept up with our most popular combo deal, the John J Rig.  Even though it was not on the deepest rigger.  By and large, your deepest rigger is always King-stud when fishing a meat program.
                 Tomorrow's update will focus on giving credit where credit is due. Those that broke ground first ...deserve recognition moving us forward.
            My Manistee snowometer total for winter 2010-2011 is now at est. 30"!

12/14/10  Nobody will disagree 2008, 2009, and 2010 the King Salmon fishing was not the gravy train of years 2002 thru 2007 on Lk. MI.  For that reason the bar was raised even higher with the line of tackle we offer at: www.michiganangler.com
               The reel-truth is the word fishing can be applied to mean uncertainty.  This uncertainty then shifts a challenge every time you launch from a trailer, or leave a dock. 
                The agony of defeat, or the thrill of victory? That's what keep fishing interesting to the point of infinity.  The fun is not just killing a fish.  It's what went into the plan and the activities along the way to that led to catching this fish.
                Granted the past few Trout & Salmon seasons haven't been fall off a log easy to build a good box.  Seasons do not mirror one another.  They're not supposed to.  Great Lakes fishing always in a state of flux where change is the name of the game!

12/13/10  Was on generator power due to a wet heavy snow that began last Saturday night.  Last night the lake effect kicked in with the coldest temps of this winter season.  Before everything is said and done ...we'll be measuring the snow in feet, not inches! 
              Did manage to get a photo yesterday of the storm that wacked us. Consumer's electricity has been on & off too many times to count. Click 12/12/10 snow piles!
              Our past Saturday's blizzard warning has been downgraded to just a storm warning with 8 more inches of snow predicted thru this coming Wednesday.
               My snowometer total for the 2010-2011 winter is now at 27" & building!

12/12/10  Christmas came early for me when I found out there was Sea Green Squids available.  Placed special order of 3 gross to get this special fish-killing sea green color. 
               This hue of green has been my best producer when running a non-meat attractor program ...bar none!  Let's not pretend anyone has even the smallest hint why Salmon & Trout will tear into a color with stupid abandon while ignoring everything else.
                I know for a reel-fact it's hard for you to get behind a color until it's proven itself by putting fish your the net.  Click matched-up Sea Green colors
                So, you'll have to take my word on this box-filling shade of green dating back to 1999 when Capt. Pete "Pedro" Ruboyianes first clued me in.
                My biggest joy my? ...best very-very most effective artificial color (sea green) transposed into a killer meat rig color for 2011.  This is like a team of horses pulling the same cart (scent & sight) of instead of one.  I'm excited to have this new color for 2011.

12/11/10  There's a reel-story about today's chat concerning the new 2011 Metallic Sea Green Squid Rig.  So, I hope you have time to hear me out.
              In 1999 legendary tournament angler & charter skipper, Capt. Pete "Pedro" Ruboyianes won the big deal cream of the crop Manistee, MI's Big Boys Tournament.  One of his main winning weapons was a seaweed trolling fly.  Pete got on his boat, ...then gave me a couple of these seaweed flies right off his rods while celebrating his $15k win. 
                Pedro was meticulous at everything he did.  Plus, the ultimate best I ever witnessed giving a seminar.  I'm sorry to say, Pete has since left the living.
                In the year 2000 I used this very same seaweed color to lead this prestigious event on the 1st day with a plus 100 point cushion.  Only to have SW wind blow in.  Ruining our honey hole.  We ended up 10th ...only mustering a lean 5 fish catch on day 2.
This seaweed color is a clone to our matching Sea Green Squid Rig & Sea Green Fly!
               More on this lethal color & why I'm so big on it ...in tomorrow's update!      

12/10/10  Another "they say" update, but this one has far greater impact in realizing how voracious Cormorants are.  The decoupage of 4 combined images came from WI's Lk. Oneida.  Each photo is the stomach contents from 1 fishduck. Click 4 in 1 photo
              If the axiom of "one picture is worth a 1000 words" is right?  Then, today's featured photo is a 4000 word dissertation on destructive Cormorants.  They eat fish of all sizes.  Like us, they seem prefer Perch and Walleyes ...as shown in the photos.
               It's an eye-opener to see fish loss from a evil bird that's not proven indigenous to our area.  These fishducks should have bounty placed on them instead of federal protection.  Their droppings destroy the environment.  Denuding the landscape where breeding colonies are established.  No animal native to the Great Lakes does this!
             Thanks to website member, SteveO for forwarding us these images.

12/9/10  They say, "liars and lovers have to have good memories."  At 64 I have a hard enough time remembering the truth.  Let alone ...trying to BS you about buying tackle.
For that reason, providing proof in photos adds a lot more weight to my words.
              Today's featured photo is a close-up on the squid rigs we used on 8/9/10 during our middle of the day fishing trip.  We had lines in the water for 2 1/2 hours
(1pm- 3:30pm).  Boxing 8 Kings missing a few. Click 8/9/10 squid rig verification
              May I add, we had no inside info to put us on the fish.  Prior to our trip I could have called my Leland, MI contacts like skippers Jim Munoz and Bill Wright.  In my eyes that's cheating.  Most sport fishermen do not have that privilege.  Why should I?
              Plus, I had not fished Leland since about 1980 in my own boat.
              I had a hunch these squid rigs would work, but never expected them to keep up with our number one selling John J combo rig at: www.michiganangler.com

               See yesterday's update about our special 2011 Squid Rig Kits for sale.

12/8/10  Today it's a great pleasure to announce the World Debut of our new 2011 Squid Meat Rig Kits for the do-it-yourself pennywise fisherman.  You can build your own 3 Squid Rigs for about 50 cents on the dollar ...compared to retail on pre-made rigs.
              I'm proud to say some of these squid rigs hit the water last summer with excellent results.  This is a brilliant offseason project for the smart frugal fishermen who demand the most from their tackle dollars. Click for all colors & pricing
              These kits feature our industry leading custom cushioned crimps we make in-house.  No other manufacturer even uses them.  Our crimps? ...are zero line failure.  The stock pinch-on kind can cause a weak points in your leader.  Costing you fish & money!
               Our 40 Trolling Flies & 3 Squid Meat Rig kits are a special limited time offer. Expiring on 1/1/11.  No other manufacturer offers cost effective kits like we do!
      My Manistee, MI snowometer registers at 15 inches so far for winter 2010-2011 

12/7/10  The page views yesterday shows past catches of Master Angler Kings peak your interest.  With that thought in mind, I posted a Port of Manistee, MI catch from 1995 with 3 massive Master Angler Kings.  Meaning King Salmon above 27 pounds. 
                Today's featured photo shows bruiser 28, 29.9, and 30 pound Kings caught back in August of 1995.  All on the same charter too! Click for 3 massive 1995 Kings

                 If you're going to "talk the talk," ...like I do here?  You'd better have some proof you can "walk the walk!"  My lifelong 43 year obsession with the Great Lakes in pursuit of Trout & Salmon verifies this reel-fact ...beyond any shadow of a doubt! 
                 More scanned negatives turned into featured photos showing hog catches of 30 pounder Kings will grace the pages of this website in the future.
                P.S. seeing catches like what's been shown lately almost makes me want to go back in the charter business.  My charter career spanned 1983 thru 2003.  I'd spend April thru Sept. on the Lakes Huron, Erie or MI.  Then shift to the rivers Oct. thru April.

12/6/10   Need a break from the 2 new articles on fly construction and usage.  Spent a untold hours working with new image files, formatting, and content this past weekend.
                Final re-writes and proofing reading is in the works now.  You can earn your Flyologist Degree by reading it & grasping this knowledge.
Click Part I  Click Part II
                For a change of pace let's look at 1996 and what I consider the best year for skippers chartering on Lk. MI out of the Port of Manistee, MI.
                Catches from 16 years ago were not solely predicated on just Kings.  It was a mixed bag with record catch of Steelhead, some Lakers, Kings over 30 pounds, and enough Coho sprinkled in to keep things interesting. Click 62 lbs. Kings in 2 fish
                Today's featured photo shows the catch with the 62 lbs. in 2 Kings photo came from.  This catch was in strong double figures and shows a better size perspective on what reel-30 pounders look like on a brag board. Click Aug. 1996 Brag Board photo   

12/5/10  Today's update centers on my new "how-to" article about building your own flies.  Part I is semi completed and focuses on basic construction. My efforts now will concentrate on finishing Part II by Monday.  Click for Part I under construction
               Part II will cover the finer points on storage, leader lengths, & details in final rigging.  I'll share with you what I learned about flies over the past 30 some years on Lakes MI & Huron.  Stay tuned in more good stuff on the way!! Click start on Part II

               For the beginners, prior to the internet it took several seasons of trial & error to fish a deadly attractor/fly program.  Now, with a few clicks there's a cornucopia of inside knowledge at your finger tips.  I'm proud to be part of the information highway!

12/4/10  Top of this weekend's priority list is to finish the photo "how-to" page on making trolling flies with tape. Click reel-time progress on this article
               From experience adhesive is as good as winding thread, or stretching surgical tubing (rubber band) as a binder to hold the Mylar on the bullet head.
               I'm very proud to point out the reel-fact our bullet heads were made with little taper on the shank part and the Mylar almost lays perfectly flat.
               The cheapie Chinese bullets cause bunching, the Mylar to lay goofy, with loss of contact area for the adhesive to stick to. Click USA vs. Chinese technology
               There's issues with thread, metal crimps, or surgical tubing.  The method I'll show you will last for years and years.  Best thing about tape and adhesives is the older the fly gets? ...the tape sets up like concrete. Click beginning to make a fly

                Some will knock taping flies together.  To the naysayers I reply, "did you ever try to remove a sticker, decal, or a piece of tape after it had been in place for a few months?"   I rest my case based on reel-facts we've all dealt with, cuz the glue turns into an extremely sticky epoxy-like substance!
Click for a winter do-it-yourself fly kit
                   My Manistee, MI snow gauge is at 5" for winter 2010/2011

12/3/10  Today's featured photo is from later August 1987 taken on Lk. MI's West Platte Bay back when I chartered out of Frankfort, MI.  Man in the plaid shirt on the left is Bill S.
              On the right is my former deckhand and friend, Capt. Rusty Hamilton who died in a house fire about 5 years ago.  Rusty worked with me for several years and became a licensed skipper in about 1990. Click for 1987 Bill, Rusty, & chunky Brown Trout
              This photo was scanned directly from a negative that had deteriorated badly.  I used an photo editor to clone in the bad spots and erase the scratches in the negative.  
Had to use tint/color and contrast editing to bring this almost lost image back to life.
               Needless to say this saving this photograph meant a lot to me.  Resurrecting it back to a useable form over shadows the Bill's dandy Brown pushing the 17 pound mark.
               It's a labor of love rescuing my old 35mm images.
               I'm glad to have found the ambition to start this tedious project containing 100s of irreplaceable sentimental 35mm photos before age ruined them all.

12/2/10  Today's 1st featured photo is the curtain rising on Act I of our winter snow season.  Yesterday's snow in Manistee, MI was 3". Click 12/1/10 Manistee snow
               Second featured image is two Master Angler certified Kings at 32 & 30 pounds.  The angler is holding 62 pounds of hog kings.  His name is Dick K and was a great charter customer of mine back in the 1990s.  We nailed these 2 trophies back to back on the same trip.  Think the year was 1996.  Click 62 pounds of Kings
                I have scores of 35mm negatives from the 1970s until I went with digital camera in the early i2ks.  Today's 62 pounds of King photo is scanned directly from the original negative from a new scanner purchased to archive all my old photos.  Over time photo colors fade & film negatives degrade.  Digitized images last next to forever!

12/1/10  Into making your own tackle?  Looking for a cost effective winter project?
                If so, we're offering ground breaking Fly Kits. 
Click for more info
                All materials to build 40 flies, including 40 assorted color bullet heads, custom pre-taped banded Mylar, beads, industry leading 50# Perlon mono leader material, and special 1/4" overwrap tape.  Plus, 25 top of the line VMC treble hooks!
                Cost is less than 2 bucks a fly when everything is all said and done.  Our 2011 Mega Fly Kits are priced at a lowball 69.95.  Kits do not qualify for any discount, cuz of the instant built in cost reductions compared to over the counter tackle store pricing.
                 By this weekend, if not sooner ...we'll have a complete step by step instructional page ready for the public at large.  3 colors of our Glow Mylar featured in our kits is X-Glow and that's a step above what many fly manufacturers use.

11/30/10  My first direct contact with world computers pointed at Great Lakes fishing was in May of 1995, or 96.  Back then, we relied on the temp breaks, or vertical surface  thermobars that fenced up the fish in May, June and into July.
                I was running spring/May charters out of Saugatuck, MI and was in the  Best Chance Tackle Store.  There was a couple shysters with surface temp charts we get for free from Sea Grant and NOAA.  Their scam was selling a service where they'd fax you a current temp chart for
about $100 a month.  Click for surface temp chart
                Sea Grant/MSU has since put a disclaimer stating the temp charts are public property and not for sale.  Please note the area circled in red on the chart saying so.
                 This was my first brush with the internet and computers and as this website proves, far from my last.  More on this worthy topic tomorrow.

11/29/10  We're pulling out all the stops with our Christmas 2011 special offers.  By purchasing a $100, or more ...you get 11% off your total purchase.
                Along with a bonus/no charge BTI 10" Flasher in the hot-hot Manistee Firedot with the Lucky 7 of Diamonds pattern. Click check out bonus no charge flasher
                Factor in the free shipping and you're looking at way over 20% off.  The 11% is to coincide with 2011 that will soon be here in about a month.
                All the products we make are eligible for the 11% discount such as flashers, meat rigs, meat heads, storage boxes and hook harnesses.  Items like line, trolling bags, etc. do not qualify.  Purchases must exceed a $100.  Sales tax does not count.
                I dislike misleading words like free, or money saving offer.  Cuz, nothing is free and the only way to save money is not to spend it.
                But, this I can guarantee: when you're on your last leg & pearly gates are calling ...you won't say, "man, I'm glad ...I was a cheapskate in the fishing tackle dept!"
                More special offer info is available at: www.michiganangler.com
                Got a super topic waiting in the wings about timing.  Plus, how the internet has been boon to all Salmon and Trout fishermen on deck for tomorrow.

11/28/10  This is the time of the year the reel-fishermen come out.  Late season, winter, and early spring anglers are cut from a different piece of cloth ...if  compared to the crowds of August.  Dyed in the wool might be another way of saying this, cuz you're gonna need lots of wool clothes to stave off winter temperatures.
                 A big thank you goes out to Jason D for sending in recently caught Manistee Lake Coho pictures.  These late season Silvers, or Coho could be from the first plants in the 1960s.  Coho enter the rivers later than Kings and thereby extend the season.
                 Some mature male Coho turn a deep shade of scarlet red with jet black jaw colorations. ...just strikingly beautiful to behold.  Click recent stringer of Coho

11/27/10  Today is Small Business Saturday sandwiched between Black Friday and Cyber Monday.  Small business provides one on one service big box stores cannot compete with.  Statistics say 68% of every dollar spent at a small business stays in the local community.
                Please remember that and try to shop/visit a hometown small business like Capt. Chucks in Ludington, MI. or Tangled Tackle here in Manistee, MI.  You'll be helping keep the mom and pop stores in business.  Plus, reinvesting in your local area.
                The hope is Small Business Saturday will catch on with the public.

11/26/10  The crux of the past few days of updates stems from a 2005 DNR presentation at the Sail Inn Restaurant in Benzonia, MI.  The MDNR official clearly stated Coho cost about a dollar each to raise.  Chinooks/Kings cost less to raise due to the reel-fact Kings spend around 6 months in the hatchery system.  While Coho stays can last 18 months.
                Also, he stated a lot of MI's Coho were being caught in IN's part of southern Lk. MI.  Again trying to make the point ...Coho were a bad investment.  I say hogwash!
                 Our recent polls showed 15 bucks per fishing trip in fuel taxes alone.  Times a low ball 12 trips a year, ...this comes to $180.00 back into our state's coffer. 
                 Then, ...factor in the other taxes paid for vehicles, boats, electronics and tackle, as this $180 figure grows exponentially to a helluva vast sum.  Dwarfing the buck a Coho bean-counter's dumb mindset that results in less fish for us!!
                 With a new trailer I purchased back last spring and other boat upgrades, ramp fees, fishing licenses, etc. as the State of MI collected the best part of a grand from me.
 The big picture proves that putting a price tag on raising fish is not the true reel-story!

Thanksgiving is our only holiday that's celebrated with a feast.  The name thanks pretty much sums up what today is all about.
        Deal with Thanksgiving is being happy with what you already have.  Not what you want.  Happiness is in the wanting, or desire.  Not the anticlimactic part where wants have been fulfilled.
         Have a great holiday today & my most sincere thanks for visiting this website.  Prediction: Detroit Lions lost 14 to 28 against the Patriots.

11/24/10  Based on yesterday's poll, I chose the lowball 40 gallons a trip by averaging the votes.  This amounts to approximately $15.00 in tax going back to the state per trip.
                 This 15 bucks does not take into account the 6% sales tax on boats, vehicles, or tackle.  Not to mention the behind the scenes 10% federal tax on tackle manufacturers are required to pay.  So, there's lots of money in taxes being paid.
                  More importantly, cost to fish is the fresh recreational dollar.  Not so with the other large businesses in Manistee that are burdensome.  Like our Oaks Prison and Little River Casino that just drain from our base of wealth and create nothing.
                  Installed a new poll to get an idea of how many times you fish a year to come up with a overall number on transportation taxes going back to the state.  Please vote how many times you fish the Great Lakes, or connecting waters a season?

11/23/10  To those of you who voted?  Many thanks and please keep it up.  Our current poll will run thru today.  Tomorrow I'll switch it to "how many times you fish a year?" 
                 This way, we'll have average gallons ....times the number of trips to get a handle on the gas tax monies spent.  Click for my 31 year old trailer boat
                 Let's the make the point that all Salmon and Trout are far more valuable than the DNR's mindset and the way they put a price tag on hatchery fish, ...especially Coho!
                 Just besieged with prep work for the 2011 season.  It's getting that time of the year to show off the new stuff.  New tackle for the 2011 season is on the way!!

11/22/10   A chink in the armor of Quagga and Zebra Mussels has been found in a promising biopesticide.  "700 bacteria before identifying a strain of the common bacterium: Pseudomonas fluorescens as being lethal to these mussels when ingested" is a copy and paste from a million dollar federal research project. 
                The Pseudomonas stuff works alive, or dead is the jest of what I read.  Anything that will curtail the mussel problem is a step in the right direction.
                Cost analysis of what we pay to fish the Great Lakes per outing is my task for this week.  I know most of us do not want to think of the money spent, but, it's important make a point on how much our fishery generates in tax revenue for Great Lakes States.
                Please vote in our poll concerning fuel consumption.  Include the gallons in your transportation/tow vehicle averaged for an entire season.  Each gallon used in the State of MI is .19 cents a gallon, plus the 6% sales tax.  Resulting in $7.40 in MI fuel taxes if you burn approximately 20 gallons per outing ...combined highway and marine usage.

11/21/10  Great Lakes fishing is a lucrative business for the State of Michigan.  The make 37 cents a gallon.  Figuring with 19 cents per gallon and 6% sales tax. 
                Even better is the gas you put into your boat.  Cuz, that tax money is free and clear from any highway usage/wear.  Ramp fees can add up to a health chunk of change based on multiple ports over an entire season. 
                Not to mention the 28 dollars for a Great Lakes fishing license which could be considered a bargain.  Especially, if you fish a lot.

11/19/10  John J ...aka Megan Ann took a respectable 6 pointer at 9am yesterday morning.  John is one of the most dedicated Deer hunters I know. He puts his time in during bow & rifle season.  Always putting meat on the table. Click John J's 6 pointer
                Also, John J is the name of one of my best selling combo deals consisting of a 12" King Kryptonite flasher and an Undertaker 3 fly meat rig named in his honor.
                What's thought to be Chronic Wasting Disease that kills Deer has been discovered on a game farm in N WI close to Michigan's UP.  Look for Deer Baiting to end there too.  I know not ...the exact science behind the reasoning to ban Deer baiting.  Even without bait Deer herd up in the winter & exchange food sources. Click for proof
                $3,000.00 of ruined pine trees on my property prove this fact!  Banning deer baiting is like a fart in the wind if anyone thinks it will stop CWD. 

11/18/10  Manistee, MI's claim to fame as the home of the world record Brown Trout was short lived.  Tom Healy's 41 pound 7.25 ounces World Record Brown caught in the Big Manistee River on 9/9/09 has been replaced by a tiny margin. Click record Browns
                 Roger Hellen caught a 41 pound 8 ounce monster Brown Trout in Lk. MI off Wind Point in Racine County, WI on 7/16/10.  3/4 of an ounce under IGFA rules means this is a shared world record.  Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame says the largest is the record.
                 WI DNR is to be congratulated for the work they've put into their Brown Trout program.  Milwaukee, MI is now recognized as the top port for Browns.
                 If one views Oct. and Nov. as lay-up months for a big lake boats?  Then in less than 4 months April Manistee Browns on Lk. MI will be on the menu!  Shoreline Browns if they're about in decent numbers? ...is an EZ fishery!  Click 4/1/10 Manistee Brown

11/17/10  Weather is not overly advantageous for our army of MI Deer hunters.  Kinda warm (40s-50s) and sunny is preventing much needed snow.
                I know, ...I've been long in the lip about an out of production Luhr Jensen spoon (Manistee Wobbler), but several brands of spoons have fell by the wayside in my 4 decade incurable addiction pursuing Great Lakes Salmon and Trout.
               Westport Wobblers, Southport Slammers, Bidigere's Crease Spoon, Huron Herring, Chargers, Fub Wobblers, Flutter Chuck, Manistee Wobblers, LG Johnsons, Sutton Spoons, GWs, Kens Spoons, Flutter Spoons, Coyotes, Red Eye, Pirate Spoons, Mauler, Salmon Slammer, Zipper, Andy Reekers, and Fishlanders are just a few off the top of my head that went out of business.  Proving the fickle spoon business has a lot of turnover!
               With spoons? ...it's the marketing/promotional plan more-so than anything that governs the popularity, cuz they all wiggle and flash color.
               In the long litany of spoons it would be a shame to have the very first spoon that reached fleet-wide acceptance in 1969 be erased from our fishery's history.
               For that reason alone, welcoming the new 2011 Manistee Wobbler meat head to my tackle lineup is a no brainer!  Click Manistee Wobbler pattered meat head
               Normally, I'd stay away from naming my tackle after a previous product, but keeping the Manistee Wobbler legacy alive and well is very important to me!!!!
               Tomorrow's update is about record Brown Trout and the April season.

11/16/10  With our fishery some things should be preserved.  Let's go back to 1969 when the big gun hot-hand spoon was the Manistee Wobbler named for the Port of Manistee, MI by Luhr Jensen.  This was back in the day before the rush to China-ize everything and Luhr Jensen was a USA company based in Hood River, Oregon. 
              Luhr Jensen developed his Salmon tackle on the west coast  & Pacific Ocean.  It was the gold standard when our fledgling fleet was still in it's infancy.
              Normark (Rapala) has since purchased Luhr Jensen and most of the Jensen line of tackle developed for the US Salmon fishing market is being made in China now.
              Getting back to what should be saved is the name Manistee Wobbler. In tribute to this spoon in it's signature color (yellow with red dots) is now the name of the new matching 2011 Manistee Wobbler Super Mag Meat Heads. Click Manistee Meat Head
              One thing all early Great Lakes Salmon lures had in common was high action at a relatively slow speed.  The cups and bends in the Manistee Wobbler spoon confirm this. 
              Also, high action wiggly plastic baits like Tadpollys, Luhr Jensen Fireplugs, and Flatfish were hot lure picks in the late 1960s thru the early 1970s.

11/15/10  Good luck to all taking to the outdoors Deer hunting.  Manistee's weather for this week is for off and on rain with a chance of snow this coming Thursday.  Then, it warms up with daytime highs in the mid to high 40s thru next Sunday.
              Snow makes it easier to spot sneaky Deer critters, cuz it lights up the woods.  Snow covered ground makes tracking one helluva a lot easier too!
              With the DNR's anti baiting, I'm passing on Deer hunting again this year.  I live in a challenging area to hunt without the luxury of bait.  Miles of woods and swamp provide a safe sanctuary for the Whitetails around where I live.
        Tomorrow's chat will focus on preserving some of our Salmon fishing history!

11/14/10  Big deal tomorrow is the Michigan firearms opener for Whitetail Deer.  November 15th is our state's unofficial holiday.  Taking to the woods on the hunt goes back to our hunter-gatherer days.  It's natural to kill animals and eat them.
               I take issue with those who try to disguise the word kill with harvest.  This is just trying placate the antis.   Anti-hunter groups want to take our rights away from us no matter what kind of softened-up terminology we use.
               Deer are highly prolific and can rebuild their population in the course of a year.   If the Deer herd was left unchecked with no natural predators these animals would cause even more major crop damage: Click winter of 2008-2009 Deer Damage

11/13/10  Until further notice this website will be updated every day at 6am to 10am.  Just too much on my plate to write around midnight like I've done for almost 11 years.
My internal clock is having a harder time than normal adjusting to this new fall time.

11/12/10  Today's featured photo is from about 1973 when the Arab oil embargo shut down the US economy.  In Detroit gas was rationed at 10 gallons by some filling stations.  Odd, or even ending license plate numbers matched to the actual date said when you could buy gas.  Times were tough back then, like now, ...if not worse.
                 I made the 2 Manistee Wobblers on the right of today's image, cuz my budget for Salmon fishing was next to nil.  Spoon bodies were cut from an aluminum pan.  The bends in the spoon were formed with pliers and light hammer taps on a rounded surface.
                 Factoring in ...back in the 1970s Lake Trout was the target specie during May, June and July.  August is when the fleet switched over to Salmon.  This meant there was a lot of time for arts & craft projects between yearly Salmon seasons.
                 You'll notice my home-built versions were made with split rings. The reel-Luhr Jensen model (far left) had welded/soldered rings. Click 1970s homemade spoons

11/11/10  Most fishermen do not have time to experiment with costly tackle.  Anglers want stuff that works right out of the package.  It's not hard to figure out ....that part of my tackle line-up is old school like the Firedots introduced last August.
                 I've seen the Firedot pattern lay waste to 20 Salmon before 8am back in the early days of our Great Lakes fishery.  And do it consistently! 
                 This all ties together with the Firedot pattern (florescent red spots over yellow, or chartreuse) on the Manistee Wobbler spoons debuting in the 1968.
                 Early days Salmon fishermen went out of their way to share the knowledge and help others catch fish.  I've maintained this same mindset since I caught my first Coho on 10/1/1968 in Lake Michigan's West Platte Bay.  Need proof of my last statement?
                 Then, just check out my section of: Encyclopedia of Tips & Tricks
Back 4 decades ago there was no knowledge base to shorten the learning curve like there is now.  Nor was there a medium like the internet to make it easy to spread the word!

11/10/10  If you travel back 40 some years into the history of our Great Lakes Salmon fishery, the hot "gotta have it" spoon was the Manistee Wobbler.  The original Mr. Luhr Jensen came to Manistee, MI in 1968-69 armed with this un-named wobbling spoon.
                The spoon proved so successful he soon named it for the Port of Manistee. Forever being known, as the Manistee Wobbler.  Click Manistee Wobbler circa 1969
                This is an excellent Salmon spoon for Coho and Kings.  Although, it earned it's fish killing reputation on stuffing fish boxes full of dead Coho back in the early days.
                Manistee Wobblers would fall in the category of a slower speed spoon that mixes perfectly at slower speeds attractor demand.
                To the best of my knowledge this is the only port specific spoon ever made. "Manistee by Luhr Jensen" was stamped into every copy! Click close-up of stamping
                 My thanks to longtime Manistee resident, Charter Skipper, & Luhr Jensen Factory Rep, Capt. Dick B. for the historical confirmation in today's 41 year old update.
           Decided to postpone any discussion on fish plants until I do more research.

11/9/10  Like you, I'm kept in the dark about what the MDNR has scheduled for the 2011 Salmon plants.  Unless I miss my guess, Coho plants will be on the upswing.
               Coho only spend 18 months in the Great Lakes and with the proper food, 8 to 10 pounders is not a stretch.  All that growth in only a year and a half says they won't be applying as much pressure on the forage base, like King Salmon do.
               With 2 of the last 3 years are all time low Salmon returns at the Little Manistee Harvest Weir ...let's hope the MDNR got the message and is gearing up for more Coho.
                I brought up the more Coho thing, cuz when BKD wiped out a lot of Kings in 1988 and 1989, our DNR took the hint.  They planted more Coho for a more varied fishery!
                Just had a hallelujah moment!!!  Checked the DNR 2010 stocking records for Manistee County.  On 4/2/10 & 4/8/10 a total of 104,000 Coho were planted in the Big Manistee River by Tippy Dam . Click to find fish plants by specie and county
     More on this subject of Great Lakes fish plants tomorrow!          

11/8/10  Had to do a correction, as we've entered EST (Eastern Standard Time), not daylight savings time ...which runs from Mar. into Nov. 
              If I sound confused?  22% of the public gets this time switch thing wrong too.
              2/3 of those voting in our poll are not in favor of Daylight Savings Time.
              Lk. MI continues to have a strong late season fishery out of Ludington.  Far better on Kings than at this time last year.
               Bear Creek down to Manistee Lake on the Big Manistee River is OK for fall Steelhead.  I've heard no reports from Manistee Lk. by the little river.

11/7/10  We've entered the land of daylight saving time.  So, hope you turned your clocks back an hour last night.  I'm no fan of the time switch, cuz it gets dark a little after 5pm.  Not good is you have outside projects to attend to.
             EZ way to remember when we switch times?  It's always the first Sunday in Nov. when daylight savings time starts and the second Sunday in Mar. when it ends.

11/6/10  Today's featured photo is a glimpse into the next 4 months of Mr. Winter's snow.  Snapped this photo yesterday morning.  Click 11am snow 11/5/10 Manistee
             Snow is a way of life in Manistee County, MI with 150 to plus 200 inches a season depending on how severe the winter is.  Much of our snow is lake effect.  Not from system snow storms.  Our very popular winter 2010-2011 snowometer is back for the retired snow birds escaping MI's cold winter to warmer points S.
                     2010-2011 winter snowometer reads just a trace.

11/5/10  Naming lures aids to instant recognition when we speak.  In referring to our Black Mamba flashers saying it's got a red eye, silver 1/2 tape, with 1/2 black spots on a clear blade might cause one to ponder what it looks like?
              Both the Black Mamba snake and my Black Mamba flashers have one thing in common ...they're both double deadly! Click both Kinds of Black Mambas
              When I'm lucky enough to do a session devoted to testing new products we always have Mambas in our spread.  Mambas are the control factor.  Cuz, if the test flasher produces at the same pace ...it earns the right to become part of our lineup!

11/4/10  Naming pieces tackle can be an agonizing process, but I hit it perfect with the Black Mamba.  Our number 1 all-time best selling flasher is the Black Mamba 12 incher.
              The Black Mamba Snake is native to Africa and lives in tropical & subtropical regions.  Mambas are the largest venomous snakes in Africa and the second largest venomous snake in the world coming in at 8' to 14'.  Only King Cobras are larger.
              These are fast bad-boy snakes that deliver on average 100-125mg of neurotoxic venom.  25mgs is enough to kill a human.  Generally, their bites are always fatal unless anti venom is administered soon after the bite. Click for 2 Black Mambas
               While our 12" Black Mamba is our best all-time selling flasher, part of the reason it's has been part of our lineup since 2004.  Yearly best sellers can fluctuate, but the Mamba (either regular, or glow) is always towards the top of the list. 

11/3/10  What makes a great fish photo?  In my humble opinion number 1 is subject matter clearly defined.  Number 2 is contrast where all the colors don't bleed into the canvas you're trying to paint.  My vote for number 3 is correct lighting that enhances sharp focus.  Today's featured is strikingly beautiful Steelhead.  Not large by any means,  an excellent composed photo we can all enjoy.  Click 10/31/10 Kewaunee 'bow
                 This image, courtesy of Steve S, a pro photographer makes the point using meat aka bait/herring works all season long.  This Steelhead found the X-Glow HRP meat rig (introduced in 2010) to his liking and was tricked into eating the whole thing!

  "Memo's of Betsie Bay, A History of Frankfort" was written by Charles Anderson and published in 1988.  In the 1970s & 1980s Charlie used to manage Jacobson's Marina in Frankfort, MI. ...long before it became the high digs joint it is now.
              In re-reading Charlie's book ...he felt the collapse of the Lake Trout in the later 1940s was partly attributed what he called, fish ducks.  With Lampreys being the main culprit.  Funny how these same parallels still exist nowadays? Click Lamprey on a King
              One of the things I found fascinating is ...the old time resident Lake Trout were deep fish.  In the 1930s & 1940s they dropped their nets in 180' to 300' of water.
              He said, replanted LT's were a lot more apt to be in much shallower water and came in around the pier heads.  Something our original stocks before the crash never did.
              Watch the Discovery Channel's Dirty Jobs tonite with Mike Rowe at 9am EST/8:00 Central for their hour long presentation on Great Lakes Lampreys.

11/1/10  After slot sizes, closed seasons, and low limits the reel deal on Lake Trout has proven to be a 20 year exercise in futility with the way these fish have been managed!
              Untold numbers of Lakers were planted in a special Lake Trout refuge in the N. part of Lk. MI.  There's no evidence this refuge ever produced natural spawned Trout.
              This was a dumb idea, cuz it removed resident LT's that used to spawn on the piers and rip-rap at several central to northern Lk. MI ports in MI and WI.  In the mid 1980s thru the mid 1990s Lake Trout would run the Big Manistee River in the late fall too.
              Prime habitat for Lake Trout rehabilitation is N & S Manitou Islands.  I've read Charles M. Anderson's bio, a commercial fishermen in the 1930s & 1940s who targeted this area.  Back then, the DNR had a closed season from Oct 10-Nov 10 during the LT spawn
              The photo of Capt. Dick holding a medium sized Laker on 4/1/10 was some of the first action of the new season for us.  After 6 months Dick's Trout was a welcome sight to behold, as we shook off the throes of a long agonizing winter!

10/31/10  Special regulations we've all put up with to build a naturally reproducing stock of Lake Trout has all been for naught.  Out of season 4/1/10 Lake Trout
               In fact, since seasonal restrictions went into place, fishing for Lake Trout has fell off the cliff ...in and around the Lk. MI waters off Manistee, MI.
               I've never suffered from "purist blood" where anything less than a big King leaves one disappointed. 7 of these 10 fish from a 2003 charter are Lakers
               Let's face it, if we haven't had a hit on an hour?  Then a rod springs to life with a fish tugging on it, ...I care not what the pedigree, or specie it is.  Attaching derogatory names to Lake Trout is beyond ignorant.  Especially, if you're in the charter business.  Seen several a day when Lakers provided the best game in-town!
               Posted a couple of Laker photos and an full explanation will follow tomorrow!

10/30/10  Last September, a record 31,500,000 Americans were on food stamps.  Formerly called welfare, or relief if you're from the over 60 generation.  To better understand this 31,500,000 number ...according to the 2009 census the population of MI (9.9m), WI (5.6m), IN (6.4m) and OH (11.5m).  Population in these 4 states totals 33.4.
              Possibly better put, 1 in 10 of us is forced to accept government handouts!
              Yet, not one person running for political office in next Tuesday's election has crusaded on the issue of our jobs being exported to China & India.  Plus, all other developing nations where the fat cats can steal from us with cheap $1.00 an hour labor.  Then, still charge us the same price if this product was made here?
              What really hurts me is when I see "Made in China" on Great Lakes tackle.  Chinese are communists.  Their industries not saddled with the same burdens USA companies are ...such as healthcare & environmental regulations.  It's surprising no one has raised protectionism to the very top of the heap.  Where it belongs!

 Congrats to Tom M's massive 13 point Indiana buck.  That's a helluva a trophy with a bow in anyone's book.   Click Tom M's trophy IN buck
               Next Tuesday on Nov. 2, 2010 at 9am EST/8:00 Central ...Mike Rowe from the Discovery Channel's Dirty Jobs Show will taken on Sea Lamprey control as it pertains to our Great Lakes.  Look to see all aspects in our war against these life sucking nasty critters!  T.G.I.F.  Especially, this week!

10/28/10  Wind, wind and more wind that has caused our electricity to fail twice from a major storm buffeting the Midwest.  Kinda reminds me of around Labor day 2010 when the fleet lost several days to high winds and rough nasty seas.
               If you dig deep enough there's always a silver lining to be found.  In the case of the wind we've endured for the past 2 days?  This wind has blown down most of the leaves.  This is excellent for fall river fishermen who are after Big Manistee River Steelhead.  I'd say the river will be flushed clean on, or before 11/1/10.
               Leaves coming down the river at times makes fishing plugs an exercise in total  futility, as leaves constantly foul hooks.  Rendering your lures useless.

10/27/10  Steelhead is good in the rivers and surf around Manistee County, MI.  Lk. MI Salmon action is light years ahead of last years pace.  This is good news for all.  Fall is generally a predictor of what next spring and summer going to be like.
              Continuing yesterday's story of our early August 2010 trip to Leland I spotted one of our a BTI 10" flasher hanging on a rod with a fisherman we were speaking with.  I proudly told him his flasher was one of our products. Click Steve E's Monkey Puke BTI
               They wanted to know how we did?  Our reply was a fast 8 fish in the middle of the day in 2 hours with lines in the water.  Then they wanted to know what our best rigs were.  Told them a new one not on the open market yet, the new Firedot and promptly gave one away on the spot to the boat with out flasher hanging on it.
               Last week I get a testimonial letter in the regular mail about their success with my line of tackle from Steve E, the fisherman I gave away the Firedot BTI to.  It's always great to hear from satisfied customers!  Click Firedot BTI I gave Steve E

10/26/10  Today's update travels back in time about 3 months to 8/9/10 and our brief 2 1/2 hour mid-day fishing trip (1pm to 3:30pm) to Leland, MI with John J and Bob K.  Over 2 hours with lines in the water does not take into account the hour from Leland to N. Manitou Island, or the 2 hour road trip to Leland from my place in Manistee, MI.
               Our score sheet was 10 bites & we boxed 8 Kings to 16 pounds with most being double digit fish.  Largely fishermen do not fish the middle of the day, cuz of it's notorious reputation for bites few and far between.  Then again, most fishermen do not use meat. 
                If they did? ...and followed what I talk about here they'd see the middle of the day as an ally, not the enemy.  Click Steve E Firedot BTI    Click Monkey Puke BTI
                Upon returning to the dock we pulled away from the ramp to get the boat shipshape ready to travel.  There were a couple of boats passing time.  Maybe waiting for an easier bite later in the day.  Like normal the anglers in waiting, or getting ready to go, they, "wanted to know how we did & if the lake was getting lumpy?"
                As all big lake fishermen do ...we soon struck up a conversation and that's when I spotted ....   To be expanded on and concluded in part II tomorrow.
   Our poll about sight fishing for Salmon and Steelhead ended with 63% voting against.

10/25/10  Today's photo of the day shows a female Big Manistee River Steelhead hooked on the outside of her lip.  Strong evidence this fish could have been possibly lined and not an actual biter.  Her tail showed signs wear from nesting on gravel before too.
                This hook had been in this fish for a year, or more.  Part of her jaw hinge is deformed.  Showing this fish escaped when it possibly chewed thru light leader line.
                Fish have no vision straight ahead.  Fish have to turn their head slightly and move towards whatever they intend to eat. Click for this hen Steelie
                In our poll 60 to 70% are saying sight fishing for Salmon and Steelhead is not ethical.  When we had an overage of fish ...targeting nesting fish was no big deal.  Now, who knows if the MDNR is going to be able to gather enough eggs for our future plants?
                Then, the worst part questions the quality/size and year classes this crop of Salmon eggs were gathered from.  Unless I mess my guess, the largest percentage of this year's eggs came from 3 year Kings.  Meaning more 3 year olds down the road.  Average weight on 3 year old fish can range from 8 to 13 pounds.
                Genetically weak 3 year old Salmon are the single largest contributing reason for our incredibly shrinking once majestic Lk. MI King Salmon.

10/24/10   Catch and release is how many justify fishing for nesting Salmon and Trout, i.e. mainly Steelhead.  The release part only works if the line is heavy enough to subdue a fish within a reasonable time.  I've landed Steelhead on 4# test after a lengthy battle.  In most cases these light line caught Steelhead were impossible to revive.
                Fall Coho are very hardy.  Short of a tomahawk, or a AK47 next to impossible to kill.  Kings to a point ....share the same characteristic.  Unless it's a large hen King/Chinook working gravel.  Then releasing her when any chance of survival depends entirely on how heavy your string was to defeat pregnant Mrs. King Salmon.
                Seen many a dead Steelhead floating down the Big Manistee River in April.  In every most case it was a spawning hen Steelie that succumb to catch and release.
                These are my experiences gained from guiding on the Betsie, Pere Marquette and Big Manistee River for almost 2 decades.  So, I am qualified to comment on this issue!

10/23/10   It's been a see-saw battle with our poll on sight fishing for Salmon and Trout with a few winning percentage points going against it.
               This poll came to mind as there's a crowd lobbying for more flies only water from Gleason's Landing to the Bowman Bridge on the Pere Marquette River.  This is being done under the smoke screen name of "special gear restrictions."  Instead of calling a spade a spade, like telling the reel-truth about this just being more flies only water.
                Another reason for this poll was the MDNR was having volunteers in orange vests policing the area below Tippy Dam to promote ethical fishing for Salmon.
               This is a big crock of dog doo, cuz when you look at the big picture removing fish from the spawning pool is just robbing from your future.  Reason? ...cuz these fish have proven their ability to survive and try to foster offspring.
                I would have left this sleeping dog lie, but when you take into account all the years of 2006 thru 2010 of planted fish in the Little Manistee River ...you're looking at close to, around, or over ...a collective of 2 million planted King Salmon.
                Now, if we say the 2010 Chinook/King Salmon run began in earnest on 8/15/10 to thru 10/20/10 the approximate number is disheartening 80 Kings per day returned to the LMHW.  It's time to re-examine policy when 2,000,000 gives up 80 a day!
                Let's break this down by the hour.  Only a measly 3.3 Kings per hour returning to Michigan's most heavily planted river, the Little Manistee River during the fall 2010 run!
                2008 & 2010 are the bottom basement worst years out of the last 42 seasons for returning King Salmon since the DNR record keeping began in 1968. 
                Yet, the same DNR rules and bag limits are in place when we ...the Great Lakes fishing public had 7 times the Salmon to deal with? 
                Changed the poll to read is it "ethical" to fish for spawning Salmon and Trout and tomorrow's update will expose the truth on catch and release.      

10/22/10  The DNR Hotline for the Little Manistee River Weir said they'd take more eggs if more fish showed up.  This sounds to me like the 2010 egg take quota has not been met.
               We thought the sky was falling during the BKD crisis 1988 when the return was 12,519 Kings.  Now we get less than 1/2 the fish compared to the height of Bacterial Kidney Disease that devastated our fishery. Click archived weir data numbers
               It's time to face the reel-facts and take action to preserve what was once called, the world's great freshwater fishery ...our Great Lakes!

10/21/10  According to the MDNR Hotline: 5265 Kings, or Chinook Salmon have been captured at the Little Manistee Harvest Weir in 2010.  This is the second lowest return since the DNR began keeping records in 1968.  Only 2008 was worse with 5169 Kings.
              If we subtract the amounts of juvenile 18"-24" early maturing skipper-sized Kings from the 2010 total of 5265, the number of actual adults is ...far bleaker!
              Today's photo of the day shows spawning Salmon burying their eggs in gravel.  The top image shows a hen in about a 18" depression in the bottom of Pine Creek on 10/1/10.  2 weeks later on 10/14/10 this hole had been completely filled in. 
              Female/hen Salmon turn sideways and rigorously fan the bottom.  This is to anchor their eggs in gravel and let oxygenated water flow in and around fertile eggs.
              This picture proves how valuable spawning Salmon are.  It's a honor and a privilege to share this one of kind time lapse photo with you. Click for this unique photo

10/20/10  Installed a poll yesterday afternoon concerning sight fishing for spawning Salmon and Trout.  Our State of Michigan has seasonal restraints in place to protect other species.  Restrictions on spawning Bass come to mind first. To the outside Bass has 10% of the financial impact Great Lakes Salmon and Trout fishing does.
              If we use the data collected from the Little Manistee Harvest Weir could the crash in Steelhead populations be attributed to increased fishing pressure during spawn?
              Does the big picture say this just means less naturally reproduced fish and more reliance on a hatchery reared fish forever? Click archived weir data numbers
              Posted a photo of some Kings in the 30" to 35" class from last weekend. This shows there are some good sized adult Salmon in Manistee, MI's Pine Creek.  This is especially encouraging after seeing herds of sub 24" skipper Kings on 10/14/10. 
              Even more upbeat news is the fast limits on next year's Kings from Ludington right now.  Lk. MI Kings were scarcer then hen's teeth at this time last fall!
   Tomorrow the numbers of 2010 run Kings that returned to the Little Manistee Weir.

10/19/10  Draining and refilling the lower end right-angle drive lube is a must for proper
winterization.  If water contaminates your lower end, the gear lube will look whitish, or milky.  Heard nightmare stories about those who neglected this part of maintenance and the water fouled gear grease froze and cracked their lower end housing.
              Lubricants are the cheapest insurance policy you can buy for your boat.  Lost days to expensive mechanic breakdowns can never be recovered. Click lube change
              I take every step possible when winterizing my boat.  This leads to a clean slate for when spring Brown Trout roll around in late March, or early April.  Then, it's just a matter of installing new line and turning the key ....to get fishing in the new season!

10/18/10  There's a cruel hoax being portrayed by those wishing to set apart more miles of rivers to special gear restrictions.  Such as more stretches of "flies only" waters.
              This is a giant crock of dog doo, cuz most of special gear retractions points at sight fishing for spawning fish.  In every case ...nesting Salmon, or Steelhead.
              The biggest lie is: ...this is true sport fishing.  It's not!  Repeatedly drifting split shot with and fly on a 3' to 4' leader will sooner, or later be picked up by the fish opening and closing their mouths to pump water thru their gills.  Breathing to us.
              This causes the fly to stick outside lip on the far side of the fish.  While it looks legal and is rated as legal, it sure as hell isn't even close to sporting.

              I'm careful about picking my fights and see this as a hopeless losing issue.  The MDNR is empowered to do what it wants and they have a long history of take-aways:

Federal, state, & MDNR takeaways:

1. Free to fish the Great Lakes
2. Spouse/wife fished for free with husband
3. Free Salmon giveaway
4. 5 Salmon of one specie
5. Reduction in river angler limits
6. Multi-specie Great Lakes fishery
7. Deer baiting reduced to 1 gallon
8. Then, ...banning all Deer baiting
9. Free Big Manistee River boat launches
10. Salmon snagging
11. is proposed removing another 70 miles of public's domain open river fishing and restricting it to special gear use (mostly flies only).  Making a total 178 miles of our rivers removed from direct public all tackle usage to special interest groups who are pushing for special gear restrictions that favor only them.

10/17/10  Need to thank George K for sending in today's photo of the day.  On 10/10/10 he took a nice Ohio 8 point with his crossbow.  10/10/10 must have been carrying some luck with it, cuz we had WI anglers and Tippy Dam Salmon fishermen do OK.
            Have some fresh interesting photos to share with you this coming week!

10/16/10  Been kinda neglecting the subject of fall Steelheading on our rivers and streams.  According to past history, by third week of October there's decent numbers of Steelhead in the lower section of the Big Manistee River. 
              Traditional Big Manistee River haunts say from Manistee Lake up to the farm house above the "Mile Run."  Spawn is the big deal now with Salmon dropping tons of eggs everyday.  Spawn bags will become less desirable as the Salmon run wanes.
              Crankbaits/plugs like Hot-n-Tots, Wiggle Warts, Hot Shots, and Tadpollys come into their own when the leaf drop is over. Usually by the first week in November most of the leaves have been flushed downriver. Click 2010 fall Big Manistee Steelhead
              My personal favorite is T4 Flatfish with the ancient spreader bars that carry four treble hooks.  Gang hooks cuts down on missed hits bigtime. Click T4 Flatfish 
              Always been of the opinion I cannot control the amount of bites I get, but do have a say in making the most of EVERY opportunity.  This is the exact mindset behind our exclusive custom snelled double treble hooks on the meat rigs with manufacture.

10/15/10  Yesterday, I visited Pine Creek a natural Trout stream not far from my house.  As mentioned before, Pine Creek is tributary of the Big Manistee River.  This stream always hosts an fall run of good sized adult Kings, or Chinook Salmon.  Until this year!
             2010 marks the year of the reduced in size ...micro-mini Pine Creek Salmon.  Most Kings/Chinooks are under 24 inches and a goodly number ...under 20 inches. 
             Don't have the smallest clue where these little fish came from?   Aboard my boat we never caught any Salmon from Lk. MI this past season so tiny.  Did see one King approaching 30 inches, but none bigger. Click for 2010 spawning micro Kings
             Not catching small fish in the 2010 season is another reason for concern.  Skipper-sized (small) Salmon are ...our future fishery!

10/14/10   Saying the DNR has a image problem is an understatement!  At last look 54% rated their respective state's DNR at poor.  Any agency that ticks off over 1/2 of it's constituents is between a rock and a hard place. 
             Protecting our State of Michigan's resources should not be run like a popularity contest either.  Like I said, DNR's are in a difficult situation.
             Let's look at snagging for instance.  After the State of Michigan's DNR raises 2 generations of snaggers ...then decides to ban snagging altogether.  This put a big time hurt on all the business in Wellston, MI close to Tippy Dam on the Big Manistee River. 
             Regular sport fishermen were supposed to replace the snagging crowd and that has not happened.  Most every business in Wellston is displaying a for sale sign.
             During the peak of the Salmon run it's impossible to fish Tippy Dam and not accidentally snag fish.  Yes, the Kings at Tippy can get that thick!
             I'm neither for, or against snagging.  I am against the miles of 50 to 80# test snagging line crisscrossing the river.  Huge amounts of broken off fishing string are waiting to ensnare your lures/spawn/flies! Click 10/10/10 mature Tippy Dam King

10/13/10  There's a million useless ways to waste your time on the internet.  Make that a million and one, cuz we now have a free Asian Carp online video game,
            It draws a foreboding morbid glance into our future when the Asian Carp finally establish large breeding populations in our Great Lakes. 
            Do you have the time to check this game out?  Be prepared to lose a 1/2 hour.  Mostly on part II where risk vs. reward into the politics of this fiasco!
            I must confess it was a hoot being a Carp feeding on plankton.  So, my Carp could get strong enough to jump out of the water.  In turn, knocking the guy in the motor boat in the drink ...while he lets out an awful groan. Click online Asian Carp Game
            If you're not up on all parts of the tragic Asian Carp quagmire ...this video game will fix that.  IL shipping issues should not control the health of the Great Lakes!

10/12/10  Here's a Kewaunee, WI fishing report from a couple of website members:

"Went with Terry & Bill, started in 350' and worked out to 550'. went 11 for 11. Got to love those double hooks!  Bows were deep, wire dipsy out 250'-300', downrigger down 101', then 125' and 150'. Yellow tail, HRP glow no flasher on copper, Leland Puke were good. 9 bows with 4 over 10#, & 2 small salmon.  Nice day on the pond!" ...SteveO
 SteveO does well with just a clean 2, or 3 fly meat rig on his copper rods.  To better clarify: no flasher, only a clean meat rig  Click 10/10/10 WI Steelhead/'bows

             Going a 100% on bites vs. fish boated is due to the tandem custom turned up eye snelled trebles I introduced with in late 2004.

10/11/10  Reports on Lk. MI Steelhead offshore 10 to 13 miles are filtered in from yesterday.  Guess Lk. MI behaved itself for late season dedicated big water anglers.
             Owning a boat comes with a responsibility to maintain it properly.  If you do it right and take every precaution expensive mechanical bills won't happen.
             In today's photo you'll notice a homemade hose with a funnel to the wash-down earmuffs.  After draining all the water from the block, manifolds and water pump I use my homemade antifreeze flushing system to push a 50/50 mix up thru the small block GM when the main motor is running.  Click my cobbled together flushing system
             It takes about 3 gallons before you'll see any antifreeze returning. 
             As an added benefit the Glycol in antifreeze prolongs the life of seals in your water pump and lubricates the raw water pump impellers in the outdrive.  Antifreeze helps limit the amount of corrosion inside your motor too!
             Squeezing every ounce of service from your motors makes bigtime cent$!

10/10/10  <<< Three 10s won't happen again for a very, very long time. 
             Installed a poll where you can rate your Dept. of Natural Resources on both hunting and fishing issues. Let's see how our DNRs stacks up from those it serves!
             Ran across an interesting website about Manistee, MI's lighthouse dating back to the 1800s.  Pre-1900s was all about logging in Manistee County. Click for this website
             Today's featured photo shows what our lighthouse looked like in 1897.  Steam powered the fog horn in those days.  The U.S.C.G. built a parabolic noise reflecting dish to redirect the annoying fog signal resonance away from downtown Manistee.
              Manistee's north pier was built entirely out of wood back then.  Probably, cuz wood was beyond plentiful and dirt cheap. Click Manistee's lighthouse in 1897  

10/9/10  Seen some of the Wisconsin harvest weir data collected thus far this year. 
             3 year old Chinook/King Salmon weighed about 13 pounds and were over 30 inches long.  No data was available for 4 year old WI King Salmon.
             WI DNR is transparent with news and keep their anglers informed.  I searched our MDNR website for like news about this fall's Salmon run and came up empty.
             Heard rumors our MDNR was collecting eggs from Lk. Huron.  Scuttlebutt says Little Manistee Weir has sub-10 pound fish, but I have no confirmed details.
             Yesterday was beautiful in Manistee with daytime temp in the high 70s.  Mark 10/8/10 on the calendar, cuz we won't see these temps till late May 2011.

10/8/10  One thing I found uncanny about last Wednesday's poll was how evenly the votes were split between spoons, meat and flasher/fly.  Spoons and flasher/fly were tied at 24% with 54 anglers voting for each of these methods. 
             57 people voted for reel-meat for a 25% piece of the pie.  J-Plugs was off the pace with only a 16% share.  Click Poll Page 2003 thru 2010
             Attractors is a broad umbrella that covers all forms of tackle that draw fish to hit an offering being towed behind a piece of metal, plastic, or cowbells.
             One of my first experiences with attractors was in the 1970s and found it hard to understand why a fish would eat a squid, or fly towed behind a dodger.  That is, until the first time I used them on the water & became an instant believer in attractor fishing.
              Whatever method you chose ...it's my most sincere hope that you do well and stay part of our Great Lakes fishing community.  Our strength is in numbers.

10/7/10   For those of you who voted in yesterday's poll ...thanks.  Kept the sample number small at 229.  That number falls into the realm of the other years. 
             Tally was not tainted in any way with prior warning, or solicitation from the esteemed membership of this website.  Fair's fair in my book!!
             There was no earth shaking shift from any one method to another.  Spoon usage has declined from a high in 2007 with a 29% rating.  Falling to 24% this year.
             Meat category had 2 choices, cut-bait, or whole.  When both of these are added together 25% preferred to fish reel-meat. Click for this poll's verification page
             Most eye opening reel-fact is attractors i.e. dodgers, flasher/fly & meat fishing methods coveted 54% of the votes.  While spoons and J-Plugs came in with 40%.
             Having 7 years of archived polls proves this website's dedication to the reel-facts.  More on this timely and fascinating yearly poll subject tomorrow!

10/6/10  Please vote in today's poll and take part in the history of this website.  This same exact poll has been run since 2004.  Votes will be tabulated and posted either tomorrow, or the next day.  Yearly results in side-by-side comparisons from 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 will be shown too.
             Please keep in mind, this poll is directed at adult summer Salmon for the most part.  This of the season is the busiest with the most angler participation.
             Prior to 2003 fishing with bait on Lk. Michigan never took off.  Granted it had been around for a while, but never found favor with the fleet.  Early i2k products were a mishmash of several manufacturers if you wanted to cash in on the attributes of fishing reel-bait.  2004 we began to simplify meat fishing with my entry into the tackle business!

Today's photo of the day is what looks like a small trout, or some kind of fish waiting below a spawning hen/female Salmon for a meal of eggs.  It was hard to identify this small fish of maybe all of 6-7 inches.  The pectoral fins on this little fish were large and looked more along the lines of a small Sturgeon to me. Click for this stream fish
              Updated the Pine Creek page completed in 2007 with more comparison photos from 2008, 2009 and 2010.  Having a running 4 year visual record from early October says a lot.  It's goes to show just how cyclical fall returning Salmon runs can be.
              If you do transport your attention to the below link directed at Pine Creek's fall Salmon run be sure to scroll all the way down the page for the new 2010 section.
               Click for full article on Pine Creek with photos & videos on river Salmon
             There's a couple of short QuickTime movies from 2007 if you have a very fast internet connection.  Might re-shoot a new short movie for the Microsoft Media player soon.  For the 1st time this fall it was below freezing yesterday morning at my place.

10/4/10  Best thing I have going for an update is the pair of spawning King/Chinook Salmon in Manistee, MI's Pine Creek.  This was a difficult photo to capture.
              Salmon rarely hold still long enough to get focus and the fish framed right.  Then, there's the water that's always moving and casting a blur to the picture.
              Compound this with having to shoot telephoto and that magnifies every movement even more.  Telephoto is required so you do not spook the Salmon any more than they already are. Click 10/1/10 Salmon spawning

            I've taken probably close to a hundred shots with a camera trained on Salmon spawning over the years.  The 10/1/10 is the best image to this point in time.

10/3/10  You're probably not going to like what you see in today's featured photo focused on Manistee's Pine Creek with spawning Kings, or lack thereof in 2010 vs. 2007.
             The situation is not quite as bleak as the versus photos show. 
             In the 2010 part of this dual combined photo there was about 8 Salmon downstream of this gravel bar, but in numbers pitiful low compared to past seasons. 
             Normally, if there is such a thing? ...there'd be at least 30 to 40 fish working this small stretch of the Pine Creek. Click 2010 vs. 2007 spawners
             OK, there is reasons for major concern.  Not one adult spawner King Salmon over 10 pounds was spotted.  Most were in the diminutive 6 to 8 pound class.
             This is a radical departure from 2007 and earlier.  Just a few years back most of the King/Chinook Salmon in this stream were easily in the high teens to 20 plus pounders.
             Over the years, I've seen a lot of early maturing precocious male Salmon, but NEVER a ripe egg dropping hen/female King/Chinook sub-10 pounds until this year.
             Being an eternal optimist ...I sincerely hope the main run of fish has is delayed and there's a bunch more larger fish still yet to come. Notes on photo.

10/2/10  Made a brief trip to Manistee County's Pine Creek to see how strong this year's fall Salmon run is.  Pine Creek is a tributary of the Big Manistee River. It's located a good 14 miles upstream from Manistee Lake, but only a few miles from my place.
            Seen far fewer Salmon this year & none on a gravel bar I've been photographing since 2007 at this exact same time of October.  Click 10/1/10 Salmon spawning
             Did see 7, or 8 Salmon.  A few of these were into spawning.  It always amazes me how noisy Salmon are when they spawn in shallow water.  If you examine today's photo of the day you'll see boiling white water coming from the spawner Kings. 
             While I was taking photos a process of 10 minutes, ...6 other Salmon watchers came and went.  The annual fall rite of Salmon reproduction where their doom means future generations is almost hypnotizing to behold.

10/1/10  Going to save my 2010 season report for next week.  In a nutshell my results will show an approx. 20% downturn.  Less days fished too ...mostly due to wind.
              On the upside the King Salmon run is building on the tributaries of the Big Manistee River.  Pine Creek now has a few Salmon in it and current pictures to that effect will be posted soon.  According info on our message board Salmon numbers at the Little Manistee River Harvest Weir are increasing.  Guess about half the pens are full.