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> > any tips on the UP of Michigan?

RogueratJuly 22nd, 2020, 7:29 am
Posts: 467
I'm heading up into the 'Yoop next week for an extended road trip (RETIRED NOW!!) and was wondering if any 'Nuts had tips or advice on streams in the UP. I've been on a few- the Fox, the W Br of the Whitefish and the Sturgeon above Bay de Noc (my first UP Brookie on that stream), but that's the extent of it. I'm researching the Escanaba and Chocolay in particular but don't have first-hand opinions and would welcome any input here. Could be hot and hotter temps, have to wait and see.

Thanks for any thoughts, and tight lines.


'Less is more...'

Ludwig Mies Vande Rohe
Jmd123July 22nd, 2020, 9:35 am
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2505
Almost ANY decent-sized UP stream has brookies in it! So don't hesitate to wet your fly line in any fishy-looking little creek, they're likely in there!

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
RleePJuly 26th, 2020, 8:14 am
NW PA - Pennsylvania's Glacial Pothole Wonderland

Posts: 398
RR: For what it's worth, I fished the Chocolay about a half dozen times during our trips to the UP a few years back. I had mixed success. A few decent browns up to 12" or so, one or two good brookies in the 10" range. But the vast majority of the fish I caught were steelhead smolts, mostly between 7 and 11". I fished the same section very time. I had Petunia drop me at the Route 41 bridge east of Marquette a ways and I'd walk down maybe a half mile and start and fish up through to about a mile upstream of the highway. I really like the looks of all of it, but did not find it that fishy or productive. It may well be though that I didn't know what the hell I was doing. That happens from time to time..:)

I also fished the Lake Superior version of the Carp River just outside Marquette. Smaller than the Chocolay, but about the same experience. Smolt city...
RogueratJuly 26th, 2020, 10:04 am
Posts: 467

Thanks for this tip, it pretty much lines up with everything I've found re: the Chocolay R- good for anadromous fish (in season), and sort-of-fair the rest of the year. I've heard (read) better about the upper Escanaba's various branches and that's its a pretty good Brook trout stream so this will be the one to hit when we pass through the Marquette area. We're headed further west and north onto the Keweenaw so there will be time on the Sturgeon and Ontonagon water along the way, hope to hook into something.

tight lines,


'Less is more...'

Ludwig Mies Vande Rohe
WbranchJuly 27th, 2020, 5:32 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2701
Are brook trout native (not wild) to the UP?
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
Jmd123July 28th, 2020, 5:39 am
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2505
Lee: if they were 7-11" long they were not steelhead smolts but resident rainbows. Smolts generally head for the big water once they're 6" long. If they're still in the stream at 7" and over, they're rainbows. We have plenty of both around my area.

Matt: brookies are native to the Upper Peninsula, and it is debated whether or not they're native to the Lower. Some say not at all, others say the "Tip of the Mitt" (north of Gaylord, i.e., the Pigeon, the Black, the Sturgeon, the Maple, etc.) is native brookie country. They have certainly been planted/made their way throughout much of the state, like browns and rainbows...

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
WbranchJuly 30th, 2020, 4:31 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2701
Thanks. I mistakenly thought native brookies were only found in the eastern US and maritimes like Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Labrador.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
RogueratAugust 2nd, 2020, 5:19 am
Posts: 467
Back from the 'Yoop, fishing was only fair since the streams I was on were higher flows than expected with a lot of color- think wading in black coffee vs. the tannin/tea shading I'm used to. I did a lot of shuffle-step with the exception of the Rapid River which was clear enough to feel safe on, hooked some small Rainbows for my effort.
Weird stuff but this original post was 'lifted' and used by another reader/lurker then dropped onto another site devoted to Spey fishing, even kept my tag line and screen name intact but under his name as poster...guess its OK, everything's fair game now.
On the return trip 'down state' we scouted the Upper Manistee at length and already planning camping trips to that vicinity, retirement is great...!!


'Less is more...'

Ludwig Mies Vande Rohe
PartsmanAugust 2nd, 2020, 11:38 am
bancroft michigan

Posts: 361
Roguerat, I will chime in on retirement is great just because I lived long enough to retire! Sometimes I wondered, but Im here, and enjoying it. I could do without some of the aches and pains, and Im not as agile as I used to be, but its all good. I hope you do well on the upper Manistee, and fished a few times this summer north of co. rd. 612, a very peaceful place, not many fish but at retirement age who cares!
Take care, Mike.

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