|March and April features cold temperatures|
but hot action for smaller-sized fish.
But the number one question whether I’m on the phone, at my booth at a sport show or asked in an email: “What’s the best time of year to come fishing with you?”
Sadly, that’s the toughest question a potential customer could ask.
Let’s say the fall run of chinooks is going and the fish are active. The number of fish caught is dictated more by the amount of time it takes to boat one of these behemoths, then get set up for another pass through the staging area. At the end of the trip, it’s hard to get the cooler shut there are so many whoppers in the box.
That’s got to be the best time to come, right? Perhaps.
But perhaps the next day the fish are moody and we troll all morning and only get one or two bites. That happens with spawning run fish. Perhaps the group includes a petite mother and an eight year old child. They may not be able to handle the power of a full grown chinook salmon. Dad might like it, but the others would have had more fun in the spring catching more, but smaller-sized fish.
|Summer and fall features fewer, but larger|
fish to catch.
If the goal for your group is to spend an enjoyable, warm, sunny day on the lake and catch a few fish to ice down for dinner, a slow “catching” day in July or August may be your perfect outing. If your goal is to catch a limit of fish and you are a duck or deer hunter, accustomed to spending hours outdoors in chilly to downright cold weather, come in March or early April, and wear your cold weather gear.
I had an individual who fished with me several times in early season and always caught a limit of cohos, browns or steelhead, but nothing big. Then he booked a fall trip to try for a mature chinook. He succeeded! In five hours he caught two big salmon over 15 pounds.
“I’m never coming back with you in the spring,” he told me. “I’d much rather come out and catch one or two of these huge fish than catch a limit of the small ones in the spring.”
Me? I like it all. I like the fact the fishing changes month to month as the season progresses. My advice? The best time to come is when you can. Bundle up if necessary. Wear shorts and flip-flops if you can. Catch the fish that bite whether that be in early March or late September. There are no bad times to give Lake Michigan a try.
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