18 charters ran in Saugatuck netted my guests 184 fish.
At this point in time I haven't boated so many Kings over 20
lbs. since the Mid-80's. The weather was more than a
problem with rain and thunderstorms 15 out of 28 days in May.
Also, May 2000 is the 5th wettest on record since 1880 but
with the low lake levels we need the water. So
far this season we've cancelled or shortened 17 out of 55
Don Carlsen reports fishing at
Grand Haven is on a record pace this season with many 10-20
lb. King Salmon and a few Coho to boot making up most of the
catch. Salmon are in the 70' to 200' range with most of the
action in 120'of water straight out. Riggers down 40-65' &
divers back 120'-200'.Fish are being taken on full lead core
and few birds with 1oz. mixed in.
Best baits/colors: monkey puke w/glow tape Streaks, SH59
Stingers, Mean green DW's, Black/raspberry Streaks & Pro
Kings, Silver Dodger with Horse flies.
Hot Tips: Early in morning start in
shallow with your darker colored baits up a little higher. As
the sun gets higher in the sky move out to deeper water and
drop your baits down with brighter lures and lengthen your
leads. Remember- Bright days bright lures, dark day dark
Good fishing and calm seas, Don Carlsen ..........High C's
was tough out of Manistee according to what radio chatter I
heard. Slow fishing best describes it, with only a few
Lakers hitting. The east wind on Sunday scattered the Salmon.
This should straighten out with west wind of some sort.
Dennis Carvello, Bob, "Les Wesman" (we
want more not Wes) and Bill
showed up from a cancelled
date earlier this May. The weather was not on our side
again, with a strong blow from the east and a soaking rain
that didn't let up. The Salmon were scattered from 50'
of water to 165' and we boated 5 real nice Kings and 1 Coho
for about 12 hits on a shortened half day trip. Right at
the end Dennis stepped it off with a nasty bad boy 12 lb. King
in a 30 knot wind on a east troll. After a give
and take struggle Dennis won as I slid the net underneath a
well earned trophy under the worst conditions imaginable.
But, we did the most important thing you can do on a fishing
trip in lousy weather....we had fun! The laughter from
Wes's Don Rickles like sense humor still gives me a grin.
Mike Peel from Best
Chance Sporting Goods reports
excellent fishing for "Big Kings" in a 100' to 150'
water. The fish are hitting at depths of 20' to 60' down
for the most part. Lead drops with a 1 lb. lead ball are
being fished on 60' to 200' leads. Best Spoons have been
Silver Streaks off the Dipsy in Green and Blue Dolphin.
Best area has been straight out or to the north. Brace
yourself for Kings past the 20 lb. mark, incredible for this
time of year!
let the fish have some quality time to themselves without me
harassing them! That way they'll be well rested and
hungry when I attack them again.
The "Big Ben Nietubisz Gang"
showed up for a much needed day off from
the Ford Wayne Stamping Plant. The "Gang"
members are "You Can Call Me
Al", Ben and Larry Lisicki,
are the leading wizards of the Tool and Die Department.
Also, they were accompanied by Florida refugee Bret
Travis is a Back Country
Specialist for Snook and Red Fish. This group had an
awesome time on big, mean and wild Spring King Salmon.
The body count on the fish was 9 large Salmon to 22 lbs. and
one little shaker. The key here is that these
fisherman never encountered Salmon before and were amazed at
the brute strength of Spring Salmon, they now know why they're
called Kings. For being first timers the skill of these
anglers was put to an incredible test and they passed it with
flying colors. Overall great time for everyone today!
Carl Chase, Greg Wickham, Doug Clark and Javier Calderon were
on a mission to catch some Salmon. Well we had a
great day by boating 4 Lakers, 1 Steelhead, 1 Coho and 5
decent Kings to 20 lbs. Doug and his group are great
outdoor enthusiasts who both hunt and fish. We found the
fish scattered from 80' to 225' with no one spot being better.
So, we spent our time wisely on a constant search and had
about 20 hits total. I'd fished with Doug
and Carl last winter on the river
for Steelhead and they're good company. Incidentally the
fisherman today did an excellent job on the rods by boating a
90% average.....pretty good!
Reynold Gonzales, John and Marion Dominski were
on their way down the channel to Salmon country by
2:30pm. I was not looking forward to this trip after the
poor fishing I had on the morning trip. A deep water
west troll to 220' of water produced some decent Salmon and
Lakers but I still couldn't find the "Big Kings".
On the east troll right at the end of these fisherman's
charter I found a huge mound of bait fish and 3 rods went off
on Kings to 20 lbs. as luck would have it. We boated 10
including a throw back.
Pietrzac trip was a hard
one for me because we only boated 4 fish and missing about 6
hits. The fish I was working had slid 4 miles north on
to me. Greg
and his group deserved a lot better fishing than I showed them
so I won't elaborate much on this Charter.
and Rob Conat, Steve Pope along with Matt and Joe LaMay were
in on for a afternoon Salmon Charter on Lake Michigan.
10 minutes into the trip with got into a double header with
"Little Joe" (10 years old) and his dad Matt doing
the honors. This was only a 5 hr. trip because the
guys wanted to get back to the Flint area before it was to
late. The fishing was not red hot although we managed to boat
9 decent fish over a wide area of water with no concentrations
to be found.
Chris and Rick Prichard were
on the water at 6:30am in search of Spring Salmon in
Saugatuck. Quick Rick was returning with Kings Charter
after a successful February outing when he took the Steelhead
Tournament from Jeff Dixon who incidentally was a no show on
this trip. I guess he didn't want to get beat again.
Rick" has a ultra
fast reaction time and he don't let many get away, believe me.
We boated 14 fish with many decent Kings making their way into
the net. The Pritchard's are just plain nice people to
be around and they're a pleasure to fish with.
and Elaine Kowalski, Kay Graney, Claudia and Vic DeGrazia made
it off the dock for a storm shortened charter on Lake
Michigan. The catching was super with Kay doing the
honors on Big King Salmon to 18 or 20 lbs. (both Kay and
Elaine are from our mother country England) along with Claudia
are 3 awesome fishin' ladies. Vic and Dick are dedicated
Walleye experts on Lake Erie and know how to fish like Pro's.
Only one problem here is that every time I see this fine group
the weather always takes a turn for the worse for me and we
got chased off the lake 2 years in a row after a blow
cancellation in 1998. We landed 14 fish this morning
including a shaker that was tossed back and could have
caught more if a storm hadn't chased us off.
Larry Pompili and his Dad
fished with Capt.
Lee Bienz because I had a prior
commitment. Capt. Lee did a fine job by LIMITING OUT his
anglers with a nice mixed bag catch of Salmon and Lakers.
While I can't elaborate much on Larry's trip I do know that
this was the first time he limited out on Lake Michigan thanks
to the skill of Capt. Lee.
Much too windy with at least 6 footers
out of the south and a rainy morning to contend with, I'm glad
I didn't have a trip booked.
"Limit Out" Ed Evans had
rescheduled a trip from an earlier blow date. Well, Ed
deserved a lot better than was available to us. The fish
that we had been working were SHUT OFF with a super bad case
of LOCKJAW! While we a had a decent amount of hits to
fish just wouldn't hook up at all. They'd tug on the
bait 2 or 3 times and let go, 5 fish boated counting a shaker.
Lack luster describes the action we experienced. I'm not
going too expand any further on this lousy trip although Ed's
company was the high point.
and Jeff Green were on
their way down the Kalamazoo River by 7:00am for a decent
fishing trip after booking a charter last September on a
windy, nasty day and only one 22 lb. King in Manistee Lake.
Todays event was much better with a body count of 10 including
a shaker that was tossed back. Jeff
wasn't at all prepared
for the strength and fight of the mighty King Salmon. On
the last hit of the trip Jeff got into a 19 to 20 pounder that
wanted to slug it out like Muhammad Ali.
After a 20 minute struggle Jeff's
patience finally wore the fish down as
Capt. Lee Bienz expertly netted
did a fine job in landing several good sized fish also.
This was a great couple to fish with.
Mothers Day afternoon
Bob Pyciak and Gordon
Arnold met Capt. Lee
Bienz and myself at Best
Chance in Saugatuck. Gordon who is soon to be 40 years
old got Mothers Day afternoon off from his understanding wife.
Well folks these anglers had a fishing trip! The fish
were on the bite definitely, with lots of strikes and fast
action. We boated 12 fish in a short order. Bob and
Gordon caught 6 good sized Lake Trout, 3 Kings, 1 Steelhead
and 2 Coho I believe. We quit fishing about 7:00pm after
starting at 3pm. Good trip with 2 fine fisherman who
have figured out charter fishing is a whole lot cheaper and
less grief that owning, maintaining, and paying for dockage.
They had fished out of Onekama for a number of years out of
their own rig.
I've cancelled the 2 trips I had booked
for this Saturday. The weather just hasn't settled down
enough yet. The predication on sea conditions is wind 15
to 25 knots out of the northwest and that means Lake Michigan
running at 4' to 6' waves. While my boat can easily
handle it, the question is; why beat yourself up when there's
better days coming? Besides it's still early enough in
the season to get these folks on a quality fishing trip!
Wolf at Best Chance Sporting Goods in Saugatuck reports the
Capt. Kevin Shippa who pilots the "Blue Chip" boated
14 fish on yesterdays charter (mostly Kings). He fished
just slightly south of Saugatuck in 180' to 220' of water.
His best lures were the Blue Maui, Blue and Yellow Dolphin and
Fruit Cocktail Stingers. The recent batch of
Thunderstorms and High Wind has put a damper on a lot of
Todays report comes to you straight from
"Irish Mike" Boyd of Coldwater Charters who fishes
out of Benton Harbor on Lake Michigan. Locally famous
"Irish Mike" says; "We got one heck of a bad
storm down here, horizontal rain, zero visibility, tornados,
and the north winds should pile the fish up on the shore of
southern Lake Michigan again. Also, I've been using a
Coyote Dodger with a spoon 4' back from the Dodger on the
center rigger with a 10' lead. This set-up seems like it
draws the fish in and makes the lulls a little shorter when
Ed Evans Trip was cancelled in
the am because of a strong sea running at 6' out of the
called up Steve Shultz and cancelled his pm trip.
The cold front that is passing thru right now along with the
thunder storms is nothing to mess with. As an update on
the Manistee fishing it has slowed drastically over last week
end according to Capt. Lee Bienz. 41 degree water is too
cold for Salmon to be active in and feed aggressively.
While fishing has slowed some what for me in Saugatuck we're
doing great compared to the northern ports. I'm guessing
on the recent cold front will improve the Saugatuck Salmon
Action a bunch!
I fished with Rod, Rod Jr., Mark
and last but not least,
Sally Vernier. First up was
Sally, and she got into it with a
dandy 10 lb. King that didn't want to give up. Next was
Rod Sr. turn when a smoking mad 17 lb. King ran just a ton of
line off the reel, and after about 15 to 20 minutes and a tug
of war, I slid the net underneath it. Both Mark and Rod
junior landed respectable fish but nothing topped Rod Sr.
fish. We ended the 6 hr. Charter with 4 Kings, 2 Lake
Trout and a small Coho (7 fish). The hot spell has made
fishing tough, scattered fish with no concentrations or hot
spots to be found. All in all it was a great day on Lake
Michigan with a splendid family to share it with. I hate
to spill the beans on Rod Senior, but he likes the
bragging rights over his sons until I see him again on August
Dennis Carver and Auriel
Csoho met me at my boat at 6:30am
for their Fishing trip. Auriel had booked the trip in
quest of Steelhead but the offshore fishery has yet to
materialize. Instead we fished the waters from 75' to
195' deep and we boated 10 fish, counting the 2 Lakers Auriel
shook off. Dennis said "I just gave up on Salmon
fishing because I never catch my limit" , well folks
today ate his words. Also, if you have to limit out to
enjoy yourself, go to a Trout Pond because this is a fair
chase fishery and limiting out shouldn't be necessary for a
great day on the water. Auriel was another case, he just
is a plain dedicated dyed in the wool true fisherman, a man to
be respected for his love of water and fish.
Bob Perry and his daughter
Taylor had quality time together
and a great short fishing trip too boot. On the first
hit of the trip 11 year old Taylor
learned how hard a 20 lb. King can pull.
This was a fight to the finish and Taylor
had more determination than most
adults I've met. This young lady patiently
reeled, reeled, and finally brought this nasty monster of a
Salmon to the boat. She showed that
fish who the REEL BOSS was.
As a matter of fact: she boated another 4 fish for her limit
of 5. Bob also
caught a 3 lb. Coho while Taylor
was in the process of whipping her King.
After about 2 hrs. fishing (we landed 6), Bob decide to call
the trip short as this being an introduction to Taylor's
future fishing career.
Harry Deiner with his son Jeff
and his son-in-law Andy tackled Lake Michigan for some Spring
Kings out of Saugatuck. Well they weren't disappointed
either in the 5 BIG KINGS landed, with the largest going about
22 lbs. The Tunas were close to shore, down about
15' to 40' hitting Mini-Streaks and Pro Kings. We landed
10 fish in the 6 hr. trip after missing several hits in 80' to
150' of water. I believe Harry landed the 22 pounder
after a 20 some minute battle. This was a heavy box for
only 10 fish! Jeff was super alert and a definite asset
to have on the boat.
Today's report comes to you from the new
owners of Best Chance Sporting Goods, Debbie and Ryan Wolf.
Debbie says " The fishing in Saugatuck continues to be
SUPERB! All the Charters are coming back with catches in
the strong double figures. Fish are being taken from 80'
to 240' of water, 15' to 50' down seems to be the magic depth.
Best lures include Gold Watermelons, Silver-Green-Edged
Stingers or Mini-Streaks, and a 00 Red Dodger with a small
Dark Green G-Fly. Kings, Coho, Steelhead, and Lakers are
can count Debbie for
a honest report.
This report comes to you courtesy of
Mike Peel and Best Chance in Saugatuck. Capt. Mike
reports excellent numbers of Salmon being taken in 90' to 220'
of water. All the Charter boats are coming back with 15
to 21 fish per Charter! Coho to 4 lbs. are hitting a
variety of spoons, with Silver Plate and Green being best.
Kings to 21 lbs. are being taken
in the same water depth but they're scattered
with no concentrations. A few Steelhead are striking
surface lines off the in line planers (Birds).
Lake trout continue to be thicker than bugs on a bumper.
Here's a inside tip from Mike; "00 Luhr Jensen Red
Dodger with a small Green Fly is the recipe for limits of
Manistee; Brown Trout fishing on
the shoreline is just about over. A few Kings, Lake
Trout and Steelhead are being caught in 40' to 60' of water.
Details are real sketchy on what color of spoon to use but
there a some fish available to those wanting to fish Manistee.
cancelled the Carl Chase Charter due
to a strong south blow and rain.