Sunday, January 29, 2012

Pratt Lake Fishing Report 1/27/12

Pratt Lake Gills

The original Friday fishing plan was to head over to Lake Cadillac, but work issues kept us close to home.  We made the best of our situation and drove over to Pratt Lake to try our luck. Mark and I started looking for fish on the South East side of the lake at noon and found lots of bass and sunfish.  We worked our way around the lake and found bass and pan fish in 10 to 18 FOW in most areas we checked out.  We took advantage of the gill fishing and caught a limit while we searched for walleyes.   Overall we caught lots of average sized gills and had a busy time with our tip ups unhooking bass and pike.  No walleyes hooked on this trip, but we did see two nice ones on the fish camera.  The ice conditions were good with seven to eight inches everywhere we fished. 
Lake 13 Report:  Friend of ours have limited out on gills and big perch on the last four trips out to Lake 13. 
Good Luck...

Lake 13 Farwell Michigan

Pratt Lake Ice Fishing Trip 1-27-12.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Ice Fishing Tackle

I stopped at Northwoods last night and picked up a few additions to my ice fishing tackle.  Mark and I are planning on fishing Lake Cadillac on Friday and will be testing out the perch pattern.  If you are looking for good deals on fishing gear check out Northwoods in Pinconning, it's one of our favorite places to shop.

Live Forage Minnow Trap Fish-Fry Minnow 1/8 oz
Live Forage Minnow Trap Fish-Fry Minnow 1/4 oz
Lindy Darter Natural Perch 2"& 1 1/2"
Salmo Chubby Darter Gold Yellow Perch 2" 3/8oz

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Budd Lake Fishing Report 1-22-12

20-inch Bass hooked on a Lindy Slick Jig 14 FOW

Fished Budd Lake for the first time this year.  Mark and I fished the South end of the lake looking for pan fish.  We started out fishing at 11am and by 4 pm we had drilled over seventy holes from 17 FOW all the way into 4 FOW finding only small pan fish, musky, and pike.  Found lots of musky and bass in all depths which is a great sign for summer fishing.   The weed cover is way down this year and most of our favorite fishing spots are completely weed free.  It looks like the lake had been treated at some point this year.  At 4:30pm we stopped pan fishing and started jigging for walleyes.  We hooked a nice 20-inch bass, saw a big pike, and missed the only walleye we could make bite.   The ice conditions vary in most locations from 3 to 5 inches with only about half being good clear ice.   I would not take an ATV of snowmobile on the lake at this time after what we saw today. 

Good Luck...

3" Magnum Report - Houghton Lake

Well, after a short work week I packed up the family and headed back to Houghton Lake for round 2 of 2012 ice fishing on the east bay, I got my wife to come along to see what its all about and she had fun watching me and my dad catch lots of pike while her and the dog sat next to the fireplace keeping warm and hydrated.
We caught lots of 22" pike and a couple keepers, 1 big large mouth that we released on our 2 days of fishing but the Walleyes were hard to find. We jigged everything in our boxes and even tried cutting the heads off our minnows to try and entice those elusive Walleyes but we fell short all weekend. The pike seem to favor the tip ups and Lindy slick jigs.
If you head out on Houghton in the next couple weeks be careful of the ice and don't go somewhere just because someone else did, there are unsafe areas still. We also had heavy snowmobile traffic all weekend and some of them don't care about how close they are to you or your tip ups as we found out.

- Rich "3-inch mag"

Butch with his first pike of the day.


Rich loves pike...

Bones sleeping the day away
Butch hoping for a walleye

Slick jig pike

Houghton Lake Ice Fishing Report 1/20/12

Last fish of the day

Friday afternoon we fished the East Bay of Houghton Lake.  The ice conditions are still questionable on some parts of Houghton, so we returned back to our fishing area along the West side of the bay.  We picked out a new location in 10 FOW and then used the GPS to help us drill holes along the contours.  After drilling 30 holes we checked each one with the camera and set tip ups in the holes that we found fish.  The day was filled with pike action and lots of missed tip ups.  The walleye bite finally turned on at 6 pm when we had a twenty minute rush of action that resulted in us hooking one walleye on a tip up and losing two jigging.   If you head out on the East Bay this week be prepared to deal with slush and snow drifts. 

Good Luck...


Small pike hooked on a Lindy Slick Jig 10 FOW.

Looking for walleyes

East Bay

Houghton Lake Ice Fishing Trip 1-20-12

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Houghton Lake 1/14 - 1/15

First walleye of the day.  Lindy Slick Jig
We fished the East Bay of Houghton Lake on Saturday and Sunday.  The ice conditions were better then expected after all of the warm weather last week.  We found 8 to 9 inches of ice in all of our fishing area this weekend.  Saturday we headed out one mile and fished along the West shore of the East Bay in 8 to 10 FOW.  The fishing action was ok at best and we ended up hooking two walleyes, one bass, and a load of small pike.  The best bite started at 3pm and ended by quarter to five.  Both of the walleyes we landed were hooked on Lindy Slick jigs tipped with small blues.  Sunday started out slow and cold.  At the start of the morning we added about 25 new holes in 10 FOW and setup to do some ice trolling.  The first round only produced one small pike and a few weeds.  After a break and a quick warm up in the shanty I made a second at pass at10am and found the fish active the bite very light.  The net result was three missed fish and two hooked walleyes lost at the hole.  We fished hard the rest of the day and monitored our tip ups only to end up hooking a few small pike.  I talked to several fishermen on Saturday and Sunday that were fishing closer to Burger King and they reported small pike and a few walleyes.  Overall we had a great time enjoying the cold weather and hunting for walleyes with our friends.  If the cold weather continues this week we will be moving out of the East Bay and heading West to fish better walleye areas. 

Good Luck...

Slick Jig

Mark with a catch and release bass hooked on a tip up 8 FOW.

Riches new creation.

Jason with his very first fish caught through the ice.  26-inch
pike hooked on a tip up in 10 FOW.

Warming Up

First fish hooked in the new shanty.

Friday, January 06, 2012

Houghton Lake East Bay Ice Fishing Report

Mark with his first walleye of 2012.  Caught on a tip up 8 FOW.

We had a great time fishing on Houghton Lake Friday.  The weather was a little to nice for this time of the year, but it made for a pleasant day on the ice.  Mark and I parked at the beach and walked out about a mile into the East Bay.  The first spot we checked out was in 10 FOW West of the drop off.  We spent an hour looking over all of the holes with the camera and didn't find any structure of fish.  Next we moved West and checked over an old waypoint in 7 FOW and found a dead weed bed.  On our third move we found a fishing spot in 8 FOW that had what we were looking for.  After spending over two hours scouting we got setup and fishing by 10:30am.   Fishing action was good all day.  Overall we hooked two walleye, eleven pike, and lost three fish. On the camera we saw a few very nice perch and lots of pike. The best action was on tip ups fished 14 inches off the bottom.  

Most of Houghton Lake is froze up now but ice conditions are not real good.   In the East Bay we found 5 to 7 inches of ice everywhere we drilled holes. 

Good Luck...
Mark and Gary with two HL walleyes

Houghton Lake

Houghton Lake

So far we have hooked 8 pike and saw two nice perch on the camera.  Today were limited to the east bay but happy to fish....   About 7-inches of ok ice and a great day.

Houghton Lake

First flag of the day. 

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

3" magnum report

While waiting for hard water I couldn't stand it any more so I decided to head over to the marinas in gibraltar for some open water dock fishing.  We caught over 100 keeper bluegills over the long weekend. Let me tell you, if you don't mind spending a couple dollars in bait and a couple hrs cleaning fish there is nothing better than a bluegill fish fry.
I'll see everyone in a couple weeks on the hard water on Houghton Lake in my new ice house.

Monday, January 02, 2012

Houghton Lake Ice 1/2/12

I visited Houghton Lake this morning to checkout the ice conditions around the lake.  The West side of Houghton has open water in mud bay and a few spots out further NW.  The Heights has open water along shore a few hundred yard wide.  The south shore is frozen and it looks like a few people have fished the shore line.  East Bay is frozen and had a few fishermen out in the wind and snow.  I talked with two fishermen and they reported up to six inches of ice in areas, but noted that they found a few thin spots with less then three inches of ice.  I made a trip over to Five Lakes in Clare and found open water and thin shore ice.   

Houghton Lake from the end of Clarence St. North of the Heights Marina

East Bay view from the boat launch behind the Pressure Crack Bar

Open water on Five Lakes