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JUNE 2016


Woods-n-Water News
Michigans Premier Outdoor Publication



This Summer


Population Unchanged
Crazy For Michigans

We Need Sensible UP Deer Regulations Fire... Taming the Beast
Fishing Lines A to Z Lets Take It Outside Bluegills on the Fly
Saginaw Bay Walleyes Three Fish Limit? Distracted Boating Like us on facebook

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2016 20 SL

By Tom Campbell

Field notes...

urkey hunting is off to a

terrific start, with plenty of
young and old harvesting
turkeys, check out the trophy
page (68) and Father Ward's
spring turkey hunt. And
there's still time to get in on Michgan's spring turkey season, you can
purchase an over the counter license.
Hunt 0234 is a statewide hunting license valid for all open areas, except
public lands in Unit ZZ (southern
Lower Peninsula). Hunt 0234 license
will be sold as a leftover license
with no quota and can be purchased
throughout the entire spring turkey
hunting season, which ends May 31.
You don't have to be a champion
turkey caller to get in on the excitement. You can hunt turkeys with a
variety of methods, using different
weapons, bow, crossbow, shotgun
and muzzleloading shotgun. Spring
turkey season is a great time to introduce youths to hunting.

Morel Hunters

According to the DNR they now

have "an online interactive map that
highlights the states 2015 wildfires and prescribed burns each
more than 10 acres in size to help
mushroom hunters in their quest for
"Morel mushrooms are often
found in locations where large fires
occurred the previous year," said Jim
Fisher, resource protection manager for the DNR Forest Resources
Division. Each spring we get calls
from people who are seeking details
on those sites to hunt morels. We've
enhanced the features of this map to
give our customers the information
they are looking for in a mobilefriendly, easily accessible package."
The DNR's interactive Mi-Morels
map provides forest cover type



Open All Year Pike and walleye season on

Lower Peninsula Great Lakes, Lake St. Clair &
St. Clair & Detroit Rivers
Open All Year Catch-and-immediate-release
bass season on all Michigan waters open to fishing
Now-Dec. 31 Pure Michigan Hunt application
Now-May 31 Spring turkey season statewide
(various seasons and areas-check regulations)
Now-March 15 Pike and walleye season on
Lower Peninsula inland waters
Now-June 1 Elk and Bear license application
May 15-March 15 Pike and walleye season
on Upper Peninsula Great Lakes, inland waters
& St. Marys River
May 23-Dec. 31 Catch and keep bass season
on all Michigan waters except; Lake St. Clair,
and Detroit and St. Clair Rivers, which opens
June 20





19744 15 Mile Rd
Clinton Twp. 48035

3001 Rochester Rd
Royal Oak, MI 48073



My Spring Turkey Hunt

The following turkey

hunting adventure was
submitted by the Rev.
Paul Ward, pastor of
information, latitude and longitude
Sacred Heart Catholic
coordinates and state-managed land
Church in Imlay City.
boundary information.
I went out turkey
Morel mushrooms commonly
hunting Sunday aftersprout in locations burned by wildnoon on my friend
fires or prescribed burns with a tree
Leon's property. I had a
canopy; grass or sunlit open areas are
migraine, probably
less likely to produce the tasty fungi.
because of the weather,
"While the map may provide
and hoped the relaxdetails on the cover type that was
ation might make it go
burned, it's up to the user to invesaway, but I had little
tigate whether morel mushrooms
expectations of actually
are growing at any location on the
killing an afternoon turmap," Fisher said. "Just because a
key. I went to a blind I
spot is marked on the map, it doesn't
had already prepared; I
mean morels will be growing at the
set up there based on
area identified. We're providing a
last years observation,
resource, but it's up to the hunters to
that before roosting
head out to the forest and see what's
theyd always work
more or less to that corThe information and data in the
ner of the field in the
map on burn locations, state forest
cover type, and state-managed land
A couple hens came
boundaries are available for users to
out into the field, 300interact with and download via the
plus yards off, and fed on bugs and nasty things, as is the way with turDNR Open Data portal. This site
keys. They were with two geese who didnt seem to mind their presence.
gives residents and public land us They strolled about grazing for a couple hours, while I read,
ers of Michigan access to Michigan
snacked and prayedbut kept my eye on them. Then a tom appeared.
DNR spatial data and information.
The hens began working towards my corner of the field. But still not
Please be very cautious in identiclose enoughat about 100 yards, I thought theyd all change direction.
fying mushrooms, the DNR has more
My setup consisted of four decoys: alert hen, feeding hen, receiving
information on safe mushroom hunthen and a jake. In the afternoon they dont seem to yelp or gobble, so I
ing on its website.n
was staying quiet. But to pull the tom
in, frustrated at following three very
uninterested hens, I started to purr
with my slate caller. This got his
attention. He stood there, head high,
stiff as a statue, assessing my decoy
flock, listening to the purrs. This
went on for five minutes at least
The Natural Resources Commission, at its monthly meeting in Lansing, Michi- my hand started getting tired, and I
was wondering whether turkey huntgan, earlier this month, approved new coyote and nighttime furbearer hunting
ing would give me carpel tunnel.

Then he started to move my
Effective immediately, coyote hunting season is open year-round in Michigan.
way, leaving the three live (real)
Please note that dogs may not be used to hunt coyotes April 16 through July 7.
hens. He went quickly from a walk
Nighttime hunting season dates now match the daytime hunting season dates
to a sprint, and he darted straight at
by species. Coyote and opossum hunting are open year-round. Raccoon hunting is
me (and at the jake), body wiggling,
Oct. 1 through Jan. 31, and fox hunting runs Oct. 15 through March 1.
head and caruncle red, mad as a horRaccoons, opossums, foxes and coyotes now may be taken at night with 3 and
net at the jake invading his territory.
4 buckshot. Nighttime furbearers can be taken with a bow and arrow, crossbow, a
He hit the brakes at 20 yardsand
rimfire firearm .22 caliber or smaller, or a shotgun with loads other than buckshot
too late! Lights out for a 21 pound
larger than number 3, slug or cut shell. Centerfire rifles may not be used to take
bird with a 9 inch beard!
furbearers at night.

But, faithful to form, I shot
Portable artificial lights may be used throughout the open nighttime season of
through the edge of my blind winthe target species. Examples include flashlights, portable battery-powered spotdow. The shot was good, only a tad
lights and headlamps.
bit less than perfect for the blindNighttime hunters must use the aid of a game or predator call and/or dogs
while hunting at night. Dogs may not be used from April 16 through July 7. While pass-through error.

When the tom fell, the two
hunting with dogs at night, a firearm, crossbow or bow and arrow may be loaded
geese waddled over to take a look at
at the point of kill only.
him, perhaps like gawkers on a freeTo hunt coyotes, Michigan residents must have a valid base license, and nonway when theres a terrible accident,
residents must have a valid base license and a valid fur harvester license. Resibut then went back to their puddle.
dents hunting other furbearing species will need a base license and a fur harvester
That was very curious to watch.

It was very exciting calling in a
Raccoons and coyotes may be taken all year on private property by a property
tom with purrs and having him
owner or designee when the raccoons or coyotes are doing or about to do damage
charge like that - a great hunt, on a
to private property. A license or written permit is not needed.
day I expected little results, and
These changes are for coyote and nighttime furbearer hunting only. Trapping
wasnt even feeling all that well. I
season dates and regulations are not affected by these changes.
thank the Lord for every animal he
The Wildlife Conservation Order, containing complete listings of regulations
sends my way and permits me to harand legal descriptions, can be found at Department of Natural
vest. And may God bless Leon.
Resources hunting digests are available for download at

NRC approves year-round

coyote hunting season


Free walleye fishing

classes at state parks
page 65

Controlled drifting and

trolling for catfish
Fishing for answers

Idle thoughts

Trust Fund 40th not

celebrated by all

The 2016 trout opener

Roger Beukema page 85


Looking back at how
I got started

The Drumbeats of Spring:
Michigan's Exotic Dancer

John DiCello page 26

takes possible record!
Jerry Lambert page 28

DNR launches 'Turkey

Tracts' hunters' program

Michael Veine page 32

The struggle is real, but
the solution is easy

Gary Parsons/Keith Kavajecz

page 46

Kayak bug bites hard

Dave Mull page 48

MDNR page 42

Sugar beets and corn

Mr. Foodplots Ed Spinazzola

page 62

My first hunting dog...

Top-water bass

George Rowe page 54

Fish stocking creates

numerous opportunities
page 57

Tricia Auten page 77


Good things come in


Teaching kids to fish

Buck Mallory page 59


Great Lakes walleyes

Mark Romanack page 16

Mike Gnatkowski page 60

U.P. unique remote fisheries

Bluegills on the fly

Bill Ziegler page 18

Searching for BIG PIKE

Mark Sak page 64


Mark Martin page 20


ater News

Fishing Lines A to Z


By Mark Romanack

Jonathan Schechter page 10

Urban, community forest
add much to Michigan's
scenic and economic
MDNR page 24

Darryl Quidort
page 40

Distracted boaters
a hazard
Capt. Fred Davis
page 53

Douglas Mummert page 70

Michigan's fishery
is fragile
Jim Bedford page 71

Life in the fast Lane

Lane Walker page 71

Taming the beast

Alpena region
Thunder Bay/
Hubbard Lake

John Bergsma page 38

Roadside zoos - tourist

attractions; featuring
bears, lions, elk,
albino deer

Tom 36
Michigan Meanders...
Deja vu


MDNR page 74

Today's English setter

Black Powder Shooting:

One groove at a time

Len Jenkins page 82

Dennis Neely page 44


Reflections of U.P.
trout openers past

Getting guns right

Betty Sodders page 56

Michigan's Wetlands

page 76

Sporting Collectibles...
Sports Show Finds

Tom Huggler page 69

MDNR page 84

Lee Arten page 52

Terry McBurney page 80


Dog training
and handling

Trophy Page. . . . . . . . 68 Classifieds . . . . . . 87-88

Charlie Linblade page 83

Mark Romanack page 30

Time to get back to

sensible UP deer

Richard P. Smith page 70

Kenny Darwin page 78

Saginaw Bay
spring walleyes

Let's take
it outside!

Robert Dock Stupp

page 14

Stalking shallow water


Kenny 12


Jack Payne page 66

Larry Walter page 77



Op-Ed . . . . . . . . . . . 70-73 Real Estate . . . . . . . 89-97

This Summer


Population Unchanged

Saginaw Bay Walleyes Three Fish Limit? Distracted Boating Like us on facebook

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30th Annual





Eastern Michigan State Fairgrounds - Imlay City


Outdoor Exhibits,
Seminars, Puppies
Gun Auction & More

in wolf
Clearly, the Michigan wolf
population has maintained levels
surpassing these state and federal
recovery goals for more than a decade.
Russ Mason, DNR wildlife division chief


ichigan Department of Natural Resources wildlife division officials

announced the size of the states wolf
population has not changed significantly since the last survey was conducted
in 2014.
DNR wildlife researchers estimate there was a
minimum of 618 wolves in the Upper Peninsula this
winter. The 2014 minimum population estimate was
636 wolves.
The confidence intervals of the 2014 and 2016
estimates overlap, thus we cant say with statistical confidence that the population decreased, said
Kevin Swanson, wildlife management specialist
with the DNRs Bear and Wolf Program in Marquette.
Confidence intervals are a range of values that
describe the uncertainty surrounding an estimate.
Swanson said, based on the 2016 minimum
population estimate, it is clear that wolf numbers in
Michigan are viable, stable and have experienced
no significant change since 2014.
Currently, deer numbers in the U.P. are at lows
not seen in decades and we wondered if there would
be a decline in wolf numbers as a result of this
reduction in their primary source of prey, Swanson
said. We also did not observe a significant difference in the number and average size of wolf packs
as compared to 2014.
This latest minimum wolf population estimate
was compiled recently after surveys were conducted
over the past few months, beginning in December.
The wolf survey is completed by DNR wildlife division and U.S. Department of Agriculture Wildlife
Services staff who search specific units for wolf
tracks and other signs of wolf activity.
While the survey is primarily a track survey,
when available, we also use aerial counts of packs
that contain radio-collared animals. In addition, the
movement information we collect from the radiocollared wolves helps us interpret the track count
results, said Dean Beyer, a DNR wildlife researcher in Marquette. Taken together, these methods
allow us to estimate the minimum size of the wolf

Rick Baetsen photo

population. In 2016, approximately 63 percent of
the Upper Peninsula was surveyed.
After wolves returned naturally to the U.P. in
the 1980s, through migration from Minnesota,
Wisconsin and Ontario, the population rebounded
remarkably until recent years when growth began to
level off.
Over the past few years, Michigans minimum
population estimate has hovered between 600 and
700 wolves.
Since the winter of 1993-94, combined wolf
numbers in Michigan and Wisconsin have surpassed 100, meeting federally established goals for
population recovery. The Michigan recovery goal
of a minimum sustainable population of 200 wolves
for five consecutive years was achieved in 2004.
Clearly, the Michigan wolf population has
maintained levels surpassing these state and federal
recovery goals for more than a decade, said Russ
Mason, DNR wildlife division chief.
In January 2012, citing wolf recovery in the
region, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service took gray
wolves off the federal endangered species list in
Michigan and Wisconsin and the threatened species
list in Minnesota.
The ruling allowed Michigan, Minnesota and
Wisconsin to manage wolves according to their
wolf management plans. Michigans plan was crafted with the help of a panel representing a wide span
of interests ranging from Native American tribes to
trappers, hunters and environmentalists.
The 2008 plan, which the Department updated
in 2015, allowed for lethal means to control a
limited number of wolves each year where conflicts
had occurred. Michigan law allowed citizens to kill
wolves that were actively preying on their hunting

dogs or livestock.
However, Michigans laws on wolf depredation
and the ability of wildlife managers to use lethal
means, including hunting, to control wolves was
suspended in December 2014, after a ruling from
the U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C.
In a lawsuit challenging the federal delisting,
the court ruling found in favor of the Humane Society of the United States, ordering wolves returned
to federal protection. Wolves have since remained
classified as an endangered species in Michigan and
Wisconsin and threatened in Minnesota.
Because of the federal endangered species status, Michigan citizens may only legally kill a wolf
in defense of human life.
After the courts finding, Michigan, Wisconsin,
some private groups and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Service appealed the decision, filing their initial
legal briefs in the case late last year. The court has
not yet released a timeline of its deliberations.
Legislative efforts in the U.S. Congress have
also been underway to try to again delist wolves in
the Great Lakes Region.
We have limited management options available to us at this time, Mason said. We sincerely
hope that our ongoing appeal or current Congressional efforts will be successful in removing wolves
from federal protection.
Swanson said, If federal protections are removed, Michigan and other involved states would
have the ability to manage wolves in a sustainable
manner, by utilizing sound scientific principles as
we currently employ with other valuable game species, such as bear and bobcat.
For more information about wolf management
in Michigan, visit

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The Drumbeats of Spring:

Exotic Dancer

was hunkered down against the moist moss

at the base of a tree at the edge of an Indian
Springs Metropark tamarack swamp in the last
week of April. Indian Springs is Huron-Clinton Metropark on the wilder side of populous
Oakland County. It was about two hours after
sunrise and my primary mission, a sunrise hunt for
early morels, failed. Not a one was to be found.
Plan B: Sip coffee from a thermos; and wait to
see what creatures stirred. The tree with the mossy
trunk appeared to be the perfect perch for my Plan
B, and fresh coyote scat told me that old yelloweyes liked this hidden habitat too. Sitting motionlessly in promising habitat, and just listening, is my
favorite method of intentional wildlife encounters.
I expected turkeys, perhaps a deer, or maybe even a
dramatic appearance of the red-crested forest giant,
a pileated woodpecker. I did not expect to catch a
glimpse of a beautiful exotic dancer in the dappled
sunlight of a spring morning. But as John Muir
once penned...

In every walk with nature one

receives far more than he seeks.
A slightly muffled sound came from a tangled
thicket of branches at the edge of the woods. The
sound quickly snared my attention. Perhaps the
sound could best be described as an old lawn mower engine struggling to start. Almost a minute of
silence followed, and then that odd chug-chugging
sound increased in tempo and perhaps volume, or
maybe it was my concentration that made the sound
seem louder. My friend, the exotic dancer, the
woodland drummer, was back. And if you have ever
witnessed a Ruffed Grouse drum on a log to entice
the ladies, well, that drumming dance is about as
exotic as they come.
Ruffed Grouse thrive in many parts of Michigan. Indian Springs Metropark is one
of those place where the habitat is very
grouse friendly. The park practices prescribed fire (beneficial to grouse) and a
great variety of trees, including aspen is
available. Aspen is a favorite and provides
year round food for grouse, making it a
365 day a year one stop cafe. During a
harsh winter the buds of aspen, and speckled alder, are significant food sources for
grouse. And the tender young
leaves of aspen are a spring
special, perhaps as attractive
to this bird, as morels are to humans. Mixed age
growth of witch-hazel, dogwood, crabapple and
serviceberry are also common at this park, adding
to the quality of habitat.
My passion for this beautiful woodland bird
really took flight at a spring conference of the
Michigan Outdoor Writers Association in the
wilds of northern Ontario four years earlier. We
were hosted by Eddingtons Wilderness Island on
Lake Wabatongushi within the 2,700 square mile
Chapleu Crown Game Preserve. And as I often
due at conferences, when the wild woods beckon, I

Jonathan Schechter photo

quietly wander off. And I usually come back with a
good story and not a fish story - to share. Fellow
conference attendees know me as a tree-hugger. I
wear that title with pride. The woods are a patient
teacher if one walks slowly, stops often and listens.
Ten minutes into my meander through the Crowns
island spruce forest I heard a grouse, a grouse so intent on drawing in his lady love he ignored me. The
photos accompanying this salute to our
exotic dancer are all from that encounter,
for the Indian Springs grouse and I were
separated by branches of tamarack trees
that made a clear photo image impossible.
The Ontario grouse proudly strutted his
stuff and drummed, maybe twenty feet in
front of me.
Contrary to what you may think you
are seeing, grouse do not drum
wings against the log, but the
log is part of his visible stage
and sounding board. Come-hither, young lady is
the message. The grouse selects a resonant log in a
clearing, and the drumming sound is created by the
contact of the air pushed against the log. However,
there is a clear and present danger in this courtship
lure and territorial proclamation as he ruffles his
neck feathers, fans his tail feathers and drums his
wings faster and faster. The sound is distinctive, and
that means, coyotes, owls, hawks, foxes and bobcats may listen to that sound as their dinner bell. As
was the case in Ontario, and at Indian Springs, thick
cover around the drumming site offers a measure of


By Jonathan Schechter


cover. Sometimes it works. Sometimes not.

The woodlands and fields of Michigan provides
unprecedented opportunities to seek out the ways
and wonders of nature, just remember to walk
slowly, stop often and listen. Or search out a mossy
tree trunk for your back rest and just sit. And just
maybe you will hear our cryptically colored exotic
dancer and smile to the drumbeat of his wings, for
the drumming seems to continue way beyond the
breeding season. And it wont be too many weeks
before grouse chicks follow the hen off into a summer brood range that almost always include dense
protective cover. Insects are their primary food during their early forays, but the diet slowly switches
to fruits and tender plant matter and the life of the
grouse goes on.
Perhaps the words of Aldo Leopold, sum up the
relationship we have with grouse in the most unforgettable way, The autumn landscape in the Northwood is the land, plus a red maple, plus a Ruffed
Grouse. In terms of conventional physics, the
grouse represents only a millionth of either mass or
the energy of an acre, yet subtract the grouse and
the whole thing is dead. I think Leopolds words
from the Sand County Almanac apply equally well
to the woods of Michigan in the waning days of
Jonathan Schechter is the Nature Education
Writer for Oakland County Government and blogs
weekly about natures way, trails, and wildlife on
the Wilder Side of Oakland County. Email: Oaknature@aol.comn

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Twister Tail Bassin'...

begin my bass fishing every year

on the Detroit River using jigs
tipped with soft plastic erratic
grubs. Im talkin early May
bass fishing at its finest and white
bass and smallies go bonkers for
plastic twisting tail grubs
that wiggle and swim past
ambush locations. Huge
schools of smallies pack
into the deep water of the
Detroit and vertical jigging
with 5/8 oz. jigs will get you
bouncing bottom in the strike
zone. Some days Ill tuna
fish a couple dozen smallies at lightning speed,
some weigh up to four
pounds, other days
you have to cover a lot
of water to find the mother lode. Over
the years one of my best bass presentations has been a plastic grub on a jig
head. It seems the erratic twister tail
action of the grub drives bass crazy.
Heres why.
I dont want you to think the only
curly tail grub on the market is made
by Mister Twister. Today the availability of fish-catching plastics is
huge. In fact some of my favorites
include Northland Tackle Slurpies
Swimn Grub, Lunker City Hydotail
Grub, Lunker City Monkey Grub,
Berkley Power Bait Power Grub, Kalins Lunker Grub, Zoom Fat Albert
Grub, ISG Intimidator Hyper Tail
Grub and many more. Truth is, todays
grubs are fast action lures that pulse
and vibrate in the water. Most are a
soft plastic that bass grab and hang
on to and of course many are scent
enhanced to excite fish into striking
them. Sure, pheromones cause fish to
bite and special scents can key strikes.
But it is my opinion that fish cant
resist the twister action of grubs with
modern fast action wiggling tails.
Dont think grubs only catch
bass. They mesmerize plenty of fish
and Ive caught everything on them
including pike, carp, muskie, drum,
brown trout, salmon, crappies, walleyes by the ton and many more. I just
want to say when it comes to boating
smallies a jig and grub is the hottest
presentation going. Nothing catches

Michigan smallies like them and when

it comes to fooling largemouth grubs
are absolutely deadly.
With fond memories I recall a film
outing on Saginaw Bay in search of
trophy smallies. We ran from AuGres
to the Charity Islands on a
hot summer day when the
water was flat as a pancake.
Soon after slowing our speed
and using the electric bow
mounted powerful motor to
cruise the shallows we spotted some bass near a huge
rock. One cast with a oz.
jig tipped with a chartreuse
grub and I was into
a five pounder. We
soon learned that
by using polarized
sunglasses we could spot and cast
to trophy smallies that sulked in the
shade of huge boulders. Our bait of
choice was a grub.
Since that outing Ive spent countless hours on Michigan waterways in
search of bass. Of course, Im kind of
smallmouth crazy and seek the solid
strike and hard fight of those brown
fish. Ive also discovered a variety of
hot new colors that almost guarantee
strikes like brownish goby-looking
grubs or pumpkinseed, black, motor
oil, green pumpkin and many more.
Some lures are seasonally productive
but a grub will catch smallies year
Jig head designs have come a long
way in recent years but my favorite is
still a round head in sizes from 1/16
oz. for shallow water fish up to oz.
for getting deep into those holes on
the Mighty Detroit River. For most
situations I like to use the smallest
weight possible and make long distance casts to wary fish.
Smallies can be difficult to fool,
often if they see you or know you are
on their turf they are difficult to hook.
My solution is to use long distance
casts using 6 lb. mono line and a 7
foot medium action rod spinning rod.
The idea is to silently drop the offering in the strike zone far from shore
or the sound and shadow of the boat.
This trick is absolutely deadly on clear
water lakes like Crystal, Charlevoix,


By Kenny Darwin


The thrill of fighting Michigan smallies is why Cort Skoog, Ionia, loves to use crawfish
imitation grub presentations to key savage strikes. Smallies hit grubs with their customary fury and when you set the hook you are in for an exciting battle. Author photos

Whether casting, jigging or trolling a lead head jig and

modern soft plastic grub with action tail is a deadly combination for bass. Savvy anglers keep a supply of 1/161/2 oz. jigs and different grub bodies in their tackle box.
Light jigs are used in shallow water while heavier jigs
are needed for deeper water or in river current.

Powerful bow mounted electric motors can

be used to follow the shore and help anglers
to cover more water and find active fish.
They also help to keep you in casting range
of hot spots but sometimes they get in the
way when fighting or netting a monster bass.
fed monster smallies to the scales Michigan will
turn the bass fishing industry on its ear. We are
soon destined to gain a reputation as the finest
smallmouth state in the Midwest because smallie
populations are booming all along our Great Lakes
coast because of unlimited goby forage.
Dont get me wrong smallies will slam worms
with twister tails, and craws and tubes will catch
plenty of fish too but grubs work like dynamite day
in and day out. Last summer I watched two pro
fishermen tuna fishin smallies along a Lake Michigan pier by casting umbrellas. On some casts they
would lift two four pound smallies at once and in
less than an hour boated at least 30 fish. But thats
another story. Lets concentrate on the positively
dynamic combo jig and grub.
You see there is something mesmerizing about
the grubs tail. The way it ripples, wiggles and vibrates in water gets the attention of bass and causes
their strike instinct to kick into high gear. If you
have a variety of jigs from 1/16 oz. up to oz. you
are set to cast shallows, work deep water or even
troll the deadly presentation. If you work the grub
right the fish will smack it. Usually a steady retrieve or troll .9-1.4 mph is key. Move it too slow
and fish ignore the offering, zip it past them and
they will look in the other direction. Sometimes
you need to bounce bottom, make the jig hop and
crash into sand sending our puffs of dirt that mimics feeding baitfish. Other times they want the grub
to swim in a relatively straight line with the twisting tail constantly wiggling. Trial and error with a
variety of techniques can be the key to success.
How you hook the grub can be the key to success. Some anglers like the tail facing down others
swear they have better luck with the tail up. The
important point is when you thread it on the hook
follow the small crease in the grub, keep the hook
straight on the shank and push the barb out exactly
on the crease. For some reason if the grub is on the
hook crooked it tends to dampen the action.
Casting to shallow structure often is deadly.
But sometimes bass move from the shallows and
you need to find them in deeper water. Fish exodus
shallows if pike move in or a massive school of
baitfish draws them from traditional hot spots.
Sometimes bright sun, calm seas or cold fronts
will scatter schools or send fish to deep water liars.

Typically they dont move far and will return to

likely hideouts. It is fun fishing when you use
your electric bow mounted motor and slip along
the shoreline casting to fish you can see. As summer progresses bass move deeper and you need to
concentrate on deep gravel bars, sharp drop offs,
structure and along the edges of weed beds.
I get excited every time hot weather hits Michigan and traditional lakes suffer from the dog days
of summer. This is when you want to pack fishing
gear and head to the Grand Traverse Bays or fish
the drop offs near Charity Island on Saginaw Bay
because the smallies are schooled in deep water.
East Grand Traverse Bay is host to the hottest
trophy fish smallie spot in northern Michigan. For
this style of fishing use your electronics to locate
bottom hugging monster smallies and cast or vertical jig with 3/8 to oz. jigs tipped with grubs.
Just about any color jig will get smashed but if you
want to tuna fish smallies use a grub that mimics a
goby. Brown is the color of choice and some smallie pros use a paddle tail minnow that looks exactly
like a goby. The trick is to dance the offering along
bottom and get those 4-6 lb. monster smallies snappin. Sometimes fish are stacked along the bank
but a consistent summer bite exists in 30-45 feet of
Come to think of it, grubs have caught plenty of
largemouths too. I had an outing on Wixom Lake
near Edenville last year when grubs danced along
the drop off by the dam produced savage strikes.
The same trick worked wonders on largemouth in
Sanford Lake. I was fishing structure I discovered
years ago and the action was exciting. Id cast to
the honey hole, let the jig thump bottom, give it a
couple 6-12 inch pumps and begin a steady retrieve. The bass would zero in on the falling grub
and the instant it started to swim away they would
turn on the afterburners and gulp the tantalizing
There are a growing number of Michigan anglers who troll jigs for spring crappies using in-line
planer boards. They have discovered the tactic is
deadly on bass too. Apparently the grub tail action
found far from the boat is an invitation to strike.
Trollers, anglers flipping, long distance casting,
pier fishing all add up to more bass catches for
Michigan anglers using grub presentations.n


and shallow water of Lake Michigan.

I guess we all know about the booming smallie populations on the Great Lakes caused by goby
populations that have grown out of control. Gobies
are everywhere and smallmouth numbers are on the
rise because of the untouched forage fish. More
importantly smallies are fat as pigs and growing to
trophy size with absolutely little fishing pressure.
Our Great Lakes smallie fishery is completely
overlooked by most fishermen. Ive caught zillions
wading the surf in East and West Grand Traverse
Bays and the number of big hogs hiding in the
rocks is amazing. Dont overlook the massive
schools of smallies found along Great Lakes piers
where they frequently congregate to ambush forage
fish and packs of gobies. Goby imitation plastics
are the key to fishing success when casting off
piers, wading in the surf or casting to rocks along
the shore.
Ive got a spot along Lake Michigans coast
that is absolutely full of big smallies feeding in
the shallows, turning rocks and gulping gobies.
Sometimes they drive me crazy when they follow
presentations in the clear water but wont strike.
Nothing gets my heart pounding like a monster five
pound smallie close enough where I can see his
glaring red eye but it will not bite. The solution is
to keep reeling. Let the subtlety, natural appearance and tantalizing twisting tail do its job. These
smallies are fat pigs and they go nuts when I work
a pumpkinseed colored grub along the substrate.
Ive put five pounders on the sandy beach and it is
my opinion that this overlooked fishery will soon
produce world class 8-pound monsters. Believe
me, when fishermen start bringing 8-pound goby


Spending time in the woods and on the water is a soothing and peaceful adventure...

Lets take it outside!


o, Im not trying to pick a

fight. However, I would like
to discuss how the power
of Nature has such a great
influence in our lives. It has
been the study of health officials and psychologists for years. But
more importantly, what scientists have
found is something that many Michigan
sportsmen have been experiencing as a
way of life.
So what are the features and benefits of being outdoors?
Spending time in the woods and
on the water is a soothing and peaceful
adventure, especially when we simply
immerse ourselves in the Now. As I
age, I now consciously focus on what I
am experiencing outdoors.
When we smell the clean air and
listen to the birds and see a deer herd
in their natural environment, or listen
to the intoxicating call of our Michigan
loons, I dont know about you, but all
the problems of our modern world and
all the stress and worry about medical
bills and other expenses seem to wash


When youre in tune with nature,
you say, Stress what stress! Reminds me of the tune, They call me
Mellow Yellow, thats right! Its a
natural high that you cant achieve
from drugs or alcohol and the
beauty of it it has no sideaffects - except for beautiful
soothing - serenity.
Yesterday, April 17, I
went with a couple of Yoopers
to one of the many streams
rushing from the influx of
melting snow into Lake Superior. Pursuing the
mighty steelhead,
I had four strikes
from these powerful fish and a few
questionable bumps. I caught zero
zilch nuttin for the dinner table. But I
did catch the refreshing outdoor air and
on this sunny morning, I thought about
nothing in particular except watching
and listening to the gentle roar of the
rapids and the sparkling river flowing
by. Is it true that the water that you see

this day will not pass by this fishing

spot again ever?
Yes, it felt good to be alive. When
you have an attitude of gratitude, you
really have no complaints about
While on that river
steelhead fishing, my friend
Ray Kauffman, sat and then
laid down in the not-so-green
grass -- more like soft straw.
He was resting his back.
He said to Ted Kagy and
me, Im tired, but its a good
How many
times have you
heard that expression after a day outside and physically
exercising your body in pursuit of deer
or fish or just walking or hiking? My
fishing partners: Ray is 72, yours truly
is 75 and Ted is the old man at 76. We
sat down eating lunch while laughing
about the fact that each of us only fell
down once. Yes, we were all losing
our balance with aging knees and hips

By Robert Dock Stupp

while gaining our mental balance from

just participating in an outside activity
(with an emphasis on being active).
How about this popular expression:
A bad day musky fishing (substitute
your favorite fish) beats a good day of
work any day!
I sold electrical components and
connecters for a living. It was stressful at times, especially having to make
a quota. So, one day I bought a lake
cabin in the northwoods and on the
weekends I pursued hunting, fishing,
and hiking. Long story short, I had a
better sales record during these times
of year than any other time. I rarely
became depressed and my job was
more fun, especially when relating my
outdoor activities and listening to my
customers exploits.
See any deer? Catch any fish? Great
ways to start a conversation.
Scientifically speaking, I recall
reading somewhere that a couple of
environmental psychologists from the
University of Michigan argued that
just using our vision and observing our

natural environment reduces stress and

mental fatigue.
Today, April 21, I arose early to
do some writing. It had been raining
overnight. I made a cup of coffee and
looked out the glass kitchen door and
much to my surprise the grass in
the yard had changed from a dingy
brown to a renewed, long-awaited
green. Guess what? I had a great
cheerful day. Spring had sprung!
What other simple observations
can we make?
O.K., just for the fun of it, lets do
an inventory. How about looking out in
your green yard and seeing your first
robin of 2016? What about catching
your first brook trout or your first bluegill at first light. Or, simply watching
sunrises or sunsets. It is as refreshing
as seeing your first monarch butterfly
of the season or taking your first
walk on your cabin dock. And hey,
its free!
Two weeks ago, my wife Sue and
I went on vacation to Alabama. It
was warm and comfortable there. The
beach was fun and so was watching the
dolphins leaping into the air and devouring the baitfish. And the pelicans,
what can I say? Gliding inches from

A beautiful sunrise was a harbinger for success on Lake Michigan in Ludington.

the waters surface as well as folding
their wings to dive into the Gulf of
Mexico to gobble up as many baitfish
as possible in their big pouches, they
were a delight to see. It was a great
But there is no place like home! I
love the Upper Peninsula of Michigan
with its four seasons.
Nature Nurtures
On a more negative point of view,
researches have pointed out that only
10 percent of American teens spend
time outdoors every day. Living close

(989) 269-9249

(989) 624-9356

(810) 742-3364

to nature is not a high priority today.

Television, computers, cell phones,
Facebook, etc. are all good devices for
communicating with each other or
is it? Yep, call me old-fashioned but
when I walk into a room with several
people looking down at their iPod or
iPad (?), I like saying, Hi Joe, how
are you feeling today?
I have observed that all ages,
young and old, have some anxiety and
fear about our busy, more complicated
world these days. My antidote and
my pleasure is going outside at least

(989) 673-8400

(810) 664-3798

(810) 346-2761

three times a week and participating

in the great outdoors. I enjoy a natural
high that cannot be duplicated by any
beverage or whatever.
As my day unwinds with a stunning sunset, I am thankful for it.
Abraham Lincoln is remembered
for many great things, one of which is,
A man is about as happy as he makes
up his mind to be.
We step outside in nature not because science tell us how beneficial it
is, but, because in some magical way,
it just plain feels good.n

(989) 868-4165

(989) 791-1234

(810) 648-2404


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Good things do come in small packages. This

Freedom 180 is also available in a smaller 160
model and both are offered in either console or
tiller operated models. Mark Romanack photo

Bay or Lake Erie. A shallow draft bass boat works

great for fishing skinny waters, but struggles to
tame big waves. The V-hull that slices through
rough water with ease, draws too much water to fish
the shallows.
The point is no boat can be ideally suited to all
waters and all kinds of fishing. The boat buyers
challenge is to find a craft that represents the best
compromise of size, features and price for the
kinds of fishing he or she does most often. It all
sounds pretty straight forward, but the fact is we
dont really know what we want in terms of a fishing boat until we jump in and get our feet wet.
This is precisely why fishermen fall in and out
of love with their fishing boat choices over time.
Call it trial by fire, the process of buying a fishing
boat is complex because every angler out there has
his or her own set of compromises to wrestle
For me the progression has been always about
bigger, wider, more powerful outboards and more
hulls. Ironically, in recent years Ive
They say that good things come in small packages. If youre a lady, the small pack- seaworthy
found the most pleasure fishing from smaller boats
age that puts a smile on your face usually means jewelry of some sort. Guys on the that are easy to control, eat less fuel, cost less to
maintain and trailer like they arent even there!
other hand arent so enamored with rings and stuff...
In my case it appears that Ive come full circle.
Maybe now that Ive experienced larger and more
ishing puts a smile on the face of countless
countless emails Ive witnessed the stories and
expensive boats, I can fully appreciate a smaller
men, but a fishing boat is far from a small
excitement of boat owners over and over again. The boat that catches just as many fish?
package, or is it? Every winter the Fishing stories are all as different as the people involved,
411 team travels to a host of boat, sport and but similar in that fisherman have a real bond with
fishing shows in the Great Lakes region. Our their boat.
So maybe good things do come in small packdisplay is always built around my personal
ages? A smaller or utility boat may not get you
It doesnt matter if you purchased that boat or
boat which also happens to be the boat
those looks of envy at the gas station, but a utility
inherited it from a loved one. Boats and
Jake and I use to film episodes of Fishing
their owners are joined at the hip in a way boat can be a serious fishing machine. Lets look at
411 TV.
non-fishermen will never fully understand. the glass as half full and not half empty here. A utilFolks drool over the boat and always
Every fisherman I know connects with ity boat may be a compromise, but that comprothey ask the same question... what does a
mise can also be something thats easy to live with.
his or her boat. Maybe that boat isnt the
rig like that cost? To put it in perspective,
Investing in a utility model doesnt mean that
boat of their dreams, but rather the boat
when Mari and I got married 24 years ago,
boat has to be small. The term utility is one I use
they can afford at the time? Perhaps that
the home we settled on cost less than the
to describe boats that are designed more for funcboat is the one they have dreamed about
boat now setting in that garage.
tion than for flash. These open bow models tend to
and saved tirelessly for years to afford?
I marvel at how boats have skyrockhave fewer creature comforts, but they perform as a
Every boat owner and every boat
eted in price during my fishing
fishing platform exceptionally well.
story is different, but most start
career. Im blessed in that my
Because utility models have less amity, they
in a similar place. My first boat
career satisfies my lust for fishing
weigh-in less and function nicely with smaller and
purchase was a modest 14 foot
stuff at a high level. Call it tools of the trade, but I
more affordable outboard motors.
aluminum V-hull with an equally modest outboard
also realize not everyone has the luxury of owning
motor. At the time I was fresh out of college, worka 20 foot, fully rigged fishing boat. Maybe thats
ing my first real job and anxious to reward myself
Weve come full circle here and again its worth
why Im so attached to the more modest boats Ive with something I had always dreamed of owning.
the value of the test ride videos availowned over the years. A small boat may not have
That boat gave me an incredible amount of
for Starcraft, Smoker Craft, American
all the bells and whistles, but then again it can still
pleasure and helped put me on a career path that to
Angler and also Starweld. These videos can be
function as a serious fishing machine.
date has put 36 different boats in my garage! The
interesting thing is none of those boats would have found at the respective web pages for these popular
boat brands.
become a reality if it werent for the first one and
One of my responsibilities at Starcraft, Smoker the first boat a fisherman buys is likely going to be a
The goal of these videos is to provide prospecCraft, American Angler and Starweld Boats is to
boat buyers with critical information about the
modest investment.
create test ride videos on their fishing hulls. The
various models. It would be great if all these boats
idea is that when someone buys a fishing boat,
were on the water and customers could jump in and
rarely do they have the opportunity to take it for an
The notion of the perfect fishing boat is just that take them for an actual test ride. Alas, its not pracactual test ride. Our videos are virtual test rides
tical or possible for dealers to have every model set
a notion. Every manufacturer strives to make their
that help boat buyers learn the important features of boats the perfect fishing machine, but that goal is
up and water ready.
the various models.
A virtual test ride bridges the gap nicely and
painfully difficult to achieve. After owning 36 difMy team has been producing these videos for
ferent boats in my career, I can say with confidence provides boat buyers with real and useful informaseveral years now and Im blessed to have received that each and every one of those boats was a joy to tion they can leverage to wrestle through those boat
lots of feedback from folks who have watched these own, but also a compromise of function.
buying compromises we discussed earlier. Any way
videos and ultimately purchased a boat based on the
you slice it, a fishing boat is an expensive investA boat thats ideal for river fishing applicainformation provided.
tions isnt going to function very well on the Great ment. The way to get the most from that investment
A fishing boat is a personal thing that has very
is to gather as much information as possible before
Lakes. A boat thats plenty big for fishing inland
strong ties to the family. At boat shows and in
writing the deposit check.n
lakes is going to seem painfully small on Saginaw

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ness area on page 26 of the 2016 Michichigans Upper Peninsula

igan Fishing Guide. In brief these
has three special Fisheries
Management Units that
special area fishing regulations include:
provide a more unique quality fishrestrictive minimum size limits on predator species
ery than is typically found in normal
like lake trout, walleye, and northern pike. Large
state regulated lakes. There are also
and smallmouth bass have no kill regulations. Gear
other individual waters that are managed for a
is restricted to artificial lures with barbless hooks
unique quality fishery, although they are also rare.
(barbs can be pinched down) and organic, preserved
The UPs three special fishery
natural, or scented plastic baits
units are the Sylvania Wilderare all prohibited.
ness Area, Craig Lake State
In summary, almost all the
Park, and the Big Island Lake
Sylvania area lakes with viable
Wilderness Area. This article
fisheries have smallmouth bass.
covers the two western most
Of the 26 lakes with game fish,
special fisheries areas in the
largemouth bass are found in
16 lakes. A handout listing
The Sylvania Wilderness
species present in the lakes
and Recreation area is in the
is available at the Sylvania
Ottawa National Forest in the
Entrance Station and separate
southwestern UP. The Craig
Sylvania Visitor Center in WaLake State Park is located in
tersmeet, Michigan.
a rugged part of east central
Clark Lake (820 acres) is
Baraga County. The Sylvania
one of the more popular SylWilderness and Recreation
vania lakes for fishing partly
Area is comprised of 34 Lakes
because it has relatively more
from 9 to 820 surface acres in
fish species and easy access
over 21,000 acres of US Forest
(carry down). Lake trout were
Service land area. Prior to the
historically planted in Clark
US Forest Service ownership
Lake and have maintained a
the Sylvania Tract was a large
viable population since that
private estate with very light
time according to Steve Drake
fishing activity. After the US
US Forest Service Law
The author with a smallmouth bass caught and Enforcement Officer coverForest Service acquired this
tract in the 1960s, it has been released during a fishing trip in the Craig Lake ing the Sylvania Area. Lake
managed in a semi wilderness State Park. You have to work at accessing the
herring (cisco) can also be
and eventually wilderness land fishing and camping if you want to get the full
found in Clark Lake providing
experience, although it is worth it.
management scheme.
forage for the lake trout. Clark
After the initial fisheries
Lake is also noted for its small
assessment surveys by Michigan DNR the area was and largemouth bass fishery. The DNR fisheries
opened up to public angling under trophy and fish surveys found sunfish and perch providing a panfish
for fun regulations. Unfortunately, follow up fish- fishery.
eries surveys on Sylvania lakes indicated that the
Crooked Lake is also a popular fishery in part
trophy regulations were not adequately protecting
due to its easier access (carry down). Crooked has
the quality size structure of original large and small- a relatively diverse compliment of fish species commouth bass populations according to Carl Latta
pared to the majority of Sylvania lakes. Crooked
Michigan DNR Fisheries Research Biologist.
has a large and smallmouth bass fishery like most
Surveys indicated most of the Sylvania lakes are
Sylvania lakes in addition northern pike are also
relatively sterile in terms of productivity and can
found in good numbers according to Drake.
only support extremely limited fish harvest. Subse- Crooked Lake is most noted for its panfish, includquently, bass regulations were changed at Sylvania ing bluegill, pumpkinseed, crappie, and perch.
to the current restriction that requires any bass be
There are still some decent bluegills although the
immediately returned to the water. Other game fish size structure has been cropped down some by a
continue to be managed with trophy regulations.
heavy ice fishery said Officer Drake.
At Sylvania the Forest Service limits camping
Walleye can be found in good numbers in
access to permitted camp sites on the wilderness
Whitefish Lake(500 acres) and are self sustainlakes. Generally all waters must be accessed by
ing according to Drake. In addition to some larger
non motorized watercraft, most people use canoes, northern pike and smallmouth can also be caught.
kayaks, or hiking trails. The primary entry points
This lake has a sucker, perch and mayfly along
are Clark or Crooked Lakes and then anglers/padwith other aquatic insect forage base. Access can
dlers portage to some of the other 32 lakes within
be made by portaging from Clark Lake to Hay
the Wilderness Area. Access maps, portage inLake and then to Whitefish which amounts to about
formation, and camping regulations and permits
0.5mile of portaging, or from a parking area about
should be picked up at the Clark Lake Sylvania
0.75 mile from a county road parking area.
Entrance Station. Reservations for camping permits
In summary, the better bluegill lakes (in addican also be made online at and tion to Crooked) are Bear, Devils Head, Helen and
select Sylvania Wilderness BCTRY Camp.
Big Bateau. Drake has observed that Crooked,
George Madison Baraga DNR Fisheries BiWest and East Bear, Devils Head, Big Bateau, and
ologist said You will find a complete listing of the Helen Lakes appear to be more productive lakes
special fishing regulations for the Sylvania Wilder- than most of the other waters.


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decent pike and a smallThe Craig Lake State Park is

mouth bass fishery with
8,400 acres comprising six entire
panfish including sunfish
named lakes. This is the most
and yellow perch. The
remote state park in the system
forage base includes suckaccording the MI State Parks Diviers, golden shiners and
sion. The lakes range in size from
several species of aquatic
32 to 358 acres. Craig Lake State
insects found in both
Park is prized for its remote and
Crooked and Craig Lakes.
wild setting by anglers, campers
The portage trail is
and paddlers who treasure solitude
much more rugged to
during those activities. In addition,
Clair Lake from Craig,
it is very near the site of the original Erich Ziegler with a trophy sized walleye he
Michigan Moose Lift relocation caught and released from his canoe in the Syl- although it is closer at 0.5
site. The park is good moose habi- vania Wilderness Area. The Sylvania Wilderness mile. Barry said very few
tat and moose, bear, loons and other area provides some quality fishing experiences anglers make the portage
maintained by more difficult access and restric- from Craig to Clair. The
UP wildlife inhabit the area.
Park Manager said that
The park is accessed by driving tive fishing regulations. Author photos
Clair supports a fishery for
five miles north of US 41 on a low
smallmouth bass, and northern pike with a similar
maintenance road. There is a 0.2 mile portage trail
panfish and forge base as the other lakes.
to Craig Lake from the parking area. Hiking trails
Although Keewaydin Lake has a boat landing,
lead to the other lakes or you can portage from
its fishery is currently not that good according to
Craig Lake to two other lakes. Low maintenance
roads off the main access road lead to parking areas park staff. Personally, I have fished for smallmouth bass at this lake in the past, although it was
on Keewaydin and Teddy Lakes. The only boat
nothing special. At the Craig Lake Park, the lakes
landing is found on Keewaydin Lake. State Park
officials recommend using a high ground clearance that are harder to access often hold up better to
vehicle to travel the access road to the park. Fish- angling pressure, even with special fishing reguing, camping sites, and cabins must all be accessed lations. This is also the case at many other UP
waters I managed before retiring as a DNR Fish
by hiking trail or non motorized boat. The DNR
State Park has two cabins on Craig Lake and a Yurt Management Biologist.
In summary, similar species are found in Nellion each Teddy and Keewaydin Lakes according to
Doug Barry - Van Riper and Craig Lake State Parks gan and Thomas Lakes although the latter also has
some largemouth bass. Teddy Lake is shallower
Manager. Reservations for these accommodations
and occasionally winterkills leaving only some
can be made online at the web site https://www.
perch or minnows. The fishing regulations
can be found on page 28 of the Michigan Fishing
Anglers, paddlers and campers who intend to
Guide under Baraga County. Camping regulations
take a trip to either Sylvania or Craig Lake Park
can found on line or at the nearby Van Riper State
lakes need to spend more time preparing than
Park Office. In general game (predator) fish must
visitors to other typical public access waters. The
be released except two walleye may be in possesMichigan State Park has a good Back Country
sion with a 15 inch minimum size limit. Anglers
Guide which contains a check list of equipment and
are also limited to artificial lures and all water craft items to consider bringing with you to fully enjoy
must be non-motorized with the exception of Keethe remote lakes and camping/ hiking in the Craig
waydin and Thomas Lakes.
Lake State Park. It can be found on the Michigan
The two most popular fisheries in the State Park DNR Web site. Use the
are Craig and Crooked Lakes said Doug Barry.
camping and recreation section and use Craig Lake
Craig Lake is 358 acres with six islands and high
State Park in the search box. Sylvania anglers and
granite bluffs. Craig has been most known for
visitors would be well served to access this equipa remote muskie fishing experience over the last
ment and consideration check list as well.
five decades. The muskie population that had been
Additionally since these areas quality fisheries
self sustaining had declined from its former strong
are maintained by special fishing regulations (in adfishery and has been supplemented by maintenance
dition to more limited access), anglers need to read
stocking of advanced muskie fingerlings in the last
the appropriate fishing regulations in the Michigan
two years said Darren Kramer DNR Fisheries
Fishing Guide listed above. Depth contour maps
Supervisor in Escanaba. In the 1970s Michigans
for many of the lakes in this article can be found on
Governor made several remote camping and fishthe fisheries page of the Michigan DNR Web site.
ing trips to Craig Lake to enjoy the quality muskie
Both the Sylvania Wilderness Area and Craig
and remote fishing experience. Craig is a typical
State Park offer a unique fishing, paddling,
UP coolwater lake with smallmouth bass, walleye,
and camping experiences, although they
northern pike, black crappie, sunfish and a minnow,
everyone. If you really enjoy a remote
sucker and yellow perch forage base. Kramer said
experience with better potential
the walleye are self sustaining at Craig Lake.
The portage trail from Craig to Crooked Lake for some quality fishing, you should consider these
unique fishery complexes. If you are willing to
is 0.75 mile, although the portage is along very
work harder at accessing your angling areas and the
favorable terrain, said Barry. Crooked Lake is
180 surface acres and it is well named with numer- overall wild experience is important to you, these
areas are exactly the waters you are looking for.
ous bays, points and narrows to target fish. This
Most anglers and campers I know that utilize the
is a fairly shallow lake with much of its basin less
than 15 feet in depth and one deeper hole in the
two remote tracts, return to fish, paddle, and camp
north end. Angler and survey reports indicate some at them again and again.n


Searching for
Where youll locate big northerns during
the summer months depends on the
waterways youre fishing...By Mark Martin

he northern pike is one of the

most unique predators on the
planet. Esox luscious (for you
Latin buffs) has a veracious
appetite and is not picky when
it comes to what they will or
will not eat.
These plunderers torpedo-shaped
bodies are made for hunting. They
have eyes positioned near the top of
their elongated head so they can easily
zone in on their victims from afar.
And they have a mouth full of razorsharp teeth, set at an angle within their
bony jaws that doesnt allow their
quarry any hope of escape. They are
quick, attacking prey in mere seconds
and seemingly from coming from out
of nowhere, yet, can sabotage unsuspecting prey stealthily.
But even with such a ferocious
reputation, there are certain times
of the year even lakes loaded with
northern pike seem to be void of the
No, they didnt just disappear. No,
they did not lose their teeth and are
refusing to eat as many an old wives
tale tells. They did, however, move
from the shallows and into deeper,
colder water, and are feeding well on
the other species of fish that, too, have
migrated into the depths for a little reprieve from summers sweltering heat.
Present the right lure properly in
the right place, and catching a trophy
northern pike will be reality rather
than just a dream.
And pike can thrive in just about
any kind of water, be it an oligotrophic (large, deep, cold) natural lake,
mesotrophic (shallow, warm, soft
both) lakes, as well reservoirs and
rivers; in clear water and stained. And
where you find the biggest of these
beasts will depend on the type of waterway you are fishing.



The Outer Limits

In smaller mesotrophic lakes

including the tannic filled lakes in
Canada such as Granite Lake where
I take an annual fly-in trip to PK Resorts every summeryou will see me
targeting pike with both trolling and
In oligotrophic lakes, for example, casting techniques.
Although the equipment will most
pike may suspend and feed on herring,
shiners, whitefish and shad in the up- likely be the same when I am trolling
in the Canadian Bush as anywhere
per third layer of the water column.
else, my Rapala crankbaits selection
More often than not, when I am
trolling large Rapala crankbaits for
tends to be slightly different here. This
suspended northerns, Im not so much is because the lakes are shallower and
worried about marking these maraud- often packed with weeds, thus I use
ers on my Lowrance HDS-12 Gen3,
lures that dont dive quite as deep -

Deep, Yet High

The author, Mark Martin, holds a trophy-size pike he caught while trolling a Rapala
crankbait high in the water column over deep water.

but more so schools of forage fishes.

But baitfish will often scatter out
from under my Lund as I pass over
them (especially so in clear water);
this is why I like to use Lowrances
StructureScan HD feature.
StructureScan allows me up to 600
feet of side viewing in one direction
(300 feet each direction if looking out
both left and right) in high detail thats
easy to read; in which I can see where
baitfish are bunched up. I can even
add an icon over what I see on the
screen so that I can pinpoint the exact
location of the forage, even hundreds
of feet away, turn and troll my lure
right through them on the next pass.
After that is getting my Rapala
crankbaits in right front of the fish,
which I do by trolling them behind
one of the many styles of Church
Tackle in-line planer boards. The
reason my Down Deep Husky Jerks,
Magnums and Deep Tail Dancers are
pulled behind planer boards is to get
the lures out from behind the boat and
into the strike zone of fish that are
unaware of my presence.
I pretty much use the same equipment for northern pike that I do when
trolling for suspended walleyes, which
include Fenwicks Eagle Telescopic
Trolling rod, and an ABU Garcia line
counter spooled with 12-pound-test
Berkley Trilene XL monofilament.
And if I need to get my crankbaits
deeper yet, Ill have a reel spooled
with Sufixs 832 Advanced Lead
Core, which Ill use with a 7-foot-long
leader of 12-pound-test Berkley 100%
Fluorocarbon line.

like Original Minnows, Shallow Shad

Raps and X-Rap Shad Shallows.
When casting for pike, Ill use
those same crankbaits, as well Blue
Fox spinners, Northland Fishing
Tackles Magnum Series ReedRunner spinnerbaits and their Forage
Minnow casting spoons.
When using Rapalas, Ill use a
medium-action Fenwick HMG spinning rod and ABU Garcia reel filled
with 10-pound-test Berkley FireLine. When using the spinners and
spoons, Ill beef up my equipment to
medium-heavy spinning gear and use
14-pound test Berkley Trilene XT.
If bite-offs and lost lures become
an issue, Ill use a short (about 6
inches) piece of Terminator Single
Strand Titanium Leader in 20-pound
test. This leader material can be tied
with a clinch or Albright knot, and is
thin enough not to impede the action
of your lure.
When targeting northerns in shallow lakes, its best to look to the outer
edges of weed beds that are adjacent
to the deepest water in main-lake
basins, or nearest the mouth of bays.
Sunken islands, saddles and steep
breaks near points are always worth a
look, as well.

Twist And (Dont) Shout

One of the many reasons many

anglers dont like catching pike is
because they never give up a fight even after in the net and on the floor
of the boat. There are several items
you can use to make life easier after
Well, actually, the first item is
for during the landing procedure,
and thats to use a Frabill net with
Crankbait Net webbing. Its the
unique design of the coated mesh
that allows a pike to twist up in the
netting, then unroll and be easily
removed (lure and all) without hours
of untangling.
Also from Frabill are the multitudes of pliers and mouth spreaders
that are essential for a quick unhooking of the lure from the fishs mouth
quickly and without harm to both fish
and angler. (Reminder: Take a quick
photo and release those trophy-size
fish to fight again. Keep the smaller
fish for excellent table fare if that
your prerogative.)

Deep Thoughts

Looking to land the trophy pike

of a lifetime? Troll crankbaits high in

Mark Martin helped his new bud, Cole, land his largest pike at that time while trolling a
Rapala crankbait at PK Resorts, in the Ontarios Bush.
the water column in deep, cold and
clear lakes, and target the deep edges
of weed beds in shallower, warmer
lakes and chances are you catch the
biggest northern of your life.
Mark Martin is a professional

angler and walleye tournament pro,

as well instructor with the Fishing
Vacation/Schools, who lives in southwest Lower Michigan. Check out his
website at for more




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Removal of dams rehabilitates stream habitat

ith the crisp chill of autumn

in the air, they made their
way north. Negotiating
obstacles along their way,
these hearty, determined
travelers normally would
be stopped at the old dam on Thompson
Creek but not today.
For the first time in more than half
a century, Chinook salmon were able to
reach graveled spawning areas upstream
of the dam. This historic event occurred
thanks to a recent cooperative project to
remove two old dams, which were associated with the Thompson State Fish
Hatchery, along Williams and Thompson
creeks in Schoolcraft County. Michigan
Department of Natural Resources fisheries
biologists, who had been hoping for this
outcome, were thrilled.
Salmon and steelhead have returned
to the creek, said Jan VanAmberg,
manager of the Thompson and Marquette
state fish hatcheries. It was the first time
salmon had ever had access to the creek
since the dams were built prior to the
Great Lakes salmon program.
Over the past few years, the DNR has
increasingly been working to help remove
obsolete dams and restore natural stream
conditions through several projects across
the state. In 2015, the DNR Fisheries
Division provided technical assistance
on 12 dam removals and four improved

road stream crossings that resulted in

more than 73 miles of reconnected aquatic
These efforts not only reconnect and
rehabilitate aquatic habitat, but also often
result in improved and self-sustaining fish
communities, said Jessica Mistak, supervisor of the Habitat Management Unit of
the DNR Fisheries Division.
In 1922, the Thompson State Fish
Hatchery was constructed not far off
M-149, about 8 miles west of Manistique.
Two years later, the Williams Creek Dam
was built. Water from the impoundment
flowed into the raceways at the hatchery and then to Thompson Creek. The
structural height of the dam was 10.5 feet.
In 1944, the 6-foot-tall Thompson Creek
Dam was erected on the fish hatchery
grounds. Like the Williams Creek Dam,
this dam had stop logs as part of the construction.
In 1978, the DNR built a new Thompson fish hatchery closer to a natural
spring. The new complex was situated
about a mile upstream from the original
location. Reliance on the high-quality
spring as a water source for the hatchery
made the creek dams no longer necessary.
Water at the hatchery from the enclosed
spring is combined with shallow cold well
water and deep geothermally heated well
water. Blending of the three water sources
gives biologists and technicians tempera-

tures they desire for fish production. Total

water flow at the hatchery is 4.3 million
gallons per day.
Because of its new unique water supply, the Thompson facility can produce
a wide range of fish species for stocking
in inland and Great Lakes waters. For
example, from October 2012 through
September 2013, the hatchery produced
and stocked a total of 4.4 million fish,
including brown trout, steelhead, Chinook
salmon and walleye.
In 1995, an effluent treatment pond
at the hatchery was upgraded in another
major renovation project. The stop log bay
on the Williams Creek Dam was opened
in 2003.
Last summer, the DNR parks and
recreation and fisheries divisions worked
cooperatively to remove piping, dam and
hatchery structures that had remained in
place after the Thompson hatchery was
moved to its new location in 1978.
In 2014, a $60,900 DNR Aquatic

Habitat Management grant was awarded

to the project to remove the remaining
dams and restore Thompson and Williams
The Aquatic Habitat Management
grant program began in October 2013 and
will continue to operate each year funding
is available. In 2015, about $1.2 million
was available for these grants from the
Game and Fish Protection Fund.
Projects funded under the grant
program emphasize rehabilitation of
degraded aquatic resources, development
of self-sustaining aquatic communities
that provide for continuing recreational
opportunities and natural resource-based
economies and development of strong
relationships, and partnerships and new
expertise related to aquatic habitat protection and recovery.
The grant program provides money
for work involving streams, rivers, inland
lakes or the Great Lakes. Past Aquatic
Habitat Management grant awards have



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ranged from a $25,000 grant for the

Ocqueoc River Grist Mill abutment
removal in Presque Isle County to a
$300,000 grant to restore the Grand River
at Lyons in Ionia County. Beyond the
DNR, partners in the Thompson project
included the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and the Schoolcraft
County Sport Fishing Association.
In addition to a financial contribution, the association generously donated
time, said Randy Espinoza, biologist at
the Thompson hatchery, in a thank-you
letter. These man hours put in by the association, working side by side with DNR
staff, were very valuable. This teamwork
is what helped make this project a success.
The initial phase of the Thompson
project was to remove the Thompson
Creek Dam, followed by removal of
the Williams Creek Dam. The lower
portion of Williams Creek was then
reshaped with backhoes and other
All of the work done on Williams
Creek was from the dam through the
last roughly 300 feet before it entered

Thompson Creek, Mistak said. Within

the first 100 feet or so, the existing channel was reshaped.
A new stream channel was dug in the
last approximately 200 feet (this portion
of the creek was flowing through old
raceways prior to the new channel) to
improve the aquatic habitat in Williams
Additional work has since been
done, VanAmberg said. The new
stream banks have been vegetated with
new grass and the staff here has transplanted numerous trees to stabilize the
banks over time.
A new interpretive sign will be installed this spring once the ground thaws.
The new reconstructed stream has
experienced several flood events over last
fall and this spring and the banks have
held up well, VanAmberg said.
The interpretive sign said removing
the dams allows for aquatic organism
passage and restored connectivity, as well
as cooler water temperatures and higher
oxygen levels on about 7 miles of stream,
extending north from Lake Michigan to
the upper reaches of the two creeks.


In addition to the Aquatic Habitat

Management grant program, grant funding for dam repair and removal projects
is also available through the DNRs Dam
Management grant program.
Projects funded under this program
help remove obsolete structures or repair
functioning dams, resulting in improved
fisheries, aquatic resources and public
In late 2012, the grant program was
initiated supporting Gov. Rick Snyders
infrastructure initiative. State general
fund money is appropriated by the Michigan Legislature to fund the grants.
For more information on the DNRs
Aquatic Habitat Grant Program or the
Dam Management Grant Program and
others, visit
The grounds at the Thompson State
Fish Hatchery one of six in Michigan
are open daily with no admission cost.
A visitor center is open from 7:30 a.m. to
3:30 p.m. For more information, call 906341-5587, ext. 201. For more information
on fishing in Michigan, visit the DNRs
webpage at

Workers remove portions of the Williams

Creek Dam during summer 2015. The
dam removal project was conducted by
the MDNR. MDNR photo

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Saginaw Bay


Urban, community forests add much to

Michigans scenic and economic landscape
Its been said the best
time to plant a tree was 20
years ago, and the second
best time is today...

ooking at the Michigan

Department of Natural Resources long record of forest
protection and management
on state forest land and in
plenty of urban areas, its a
theory clearly subscribed to by many
DNR staff and partners.
And for good reason.
Whether they grow in public forests, private woodlots or right outside
your front door, trees are working 24
hours a day, seven days a week, to
provide us with important ecological,
economic and social benefits, said
Kevin Sayers, manager of the DNRs
Urban and Community Forestry Program.
Sayers said most Michigan residents hear the word forest and immediately think of the up north woods.
Thats not surprising, considering
Michigan is blessed with enviable
trees and forests that cover nearly 55
percent of the state.
Beyond that traditional notion of
forests, though, there are other trees
and related natural resources in the
built environment that are commonly referred to as urban and community


Trees For People


Simply put, these are trees for

people and they often go unnoticed,
even though theyre among the most
valuable assets a community can have.
This is where trees and people
intertwine, Sayers said. Its where
society benefits most directly and immediately from their presence.
Think about the many vibrant
communities Ann Arbor, Birch Run,
Glen Arbor, Royal Oak and Ironwood,
to name just a few whose very character and identity are much defined by
Sayers says the trees in these more
urbanized areas do much more than
provide pretty backdrops for day-today living.
Of Michigans nearly 10 million
residents, almost 80 percent live in
urbanized areas.
Sayers says studies have estimated
more than 100 million trees exist in
these areas and provide an average
of 22 percent tree cover. Even more
compelling, nearly 15 percent of the
total statewide tree cover is found in
urban and community lands.

A view of the mouth of the Au Train River and Au Train Beach (in the Upper Peninsula), the site of a Great Lakes Restoration
Initiative-funded effort to improve the near-shore health of Lake Superior. Photos courtesy Tim Trombley, Great Lakes Photography

Understanding the Benefits

ability to do much meaningful work

with the data it did have, and that data
Beyond the obvious aesthetics,
languished for a few years. Add in a
community trees also improve an
In Detroit, a full inventory of trees bankruptcy for the city of Detroit, and
areas environmental quality and its
on all city streets is nearly completed. the urban forestry effort was placed on
quality of life. Until recently, these
the back burner.
Once that data collection is finished,
benefits werent easily measured or
Later, as the city emerged
city leaders will have a clearer underunderstood. Today, after significant
from bankruptcy proceedings, it was
beteffort and investment, the relationship
evident there was a need for different
among trees, people and the environ- ter equipped to proactively manage it. management practices, Mistor said.
Todd Mistor, superintendent with
ment is well established.
The street tree inventory that had
forestry and ground mainIn the past 10 to 15 years weve
been sitting dormant was reassessed
tenance, called Detroits street tree
seen the development of research
inventory a transformative process. and gave new life and strength to our
tools such as i-Tree (www.itreetools.
I started working with the city of planning process.
org) and remote sensing that have
Mistor said contemporary manDetroits forestry division in 2007,
greatly expanded our understanding
practices and resource allocaMistor said. At that time, informaof tree benefits, Sayers said. Comtion
a far cry from
tion about our urban forest consisted
munity trees have proven to be an imthe
of having
of resident complaints, handwritten
portant resource worth our attention,
notes and anecdotes from long-time
investment and long-term planning.
Our street tree inventory data
Nationally, research has shown
Not a great starting point, but in
successful in securing fundhealthy trees can add between 7 and
2011 arrived an opportunity for the
critical needs, he said.
11 percent to the value of a property,
city to partner with the U.S. Forest
It has helped us begin the process
and homes with treed lots sell faster
Service and the DNR to start conductof strategically converting Detroits
than those without trees. In business
ing a tree inventory with a particular
urban forest from a neglected liability
districts, customers spend up to 11
focus on recording insect presence
to an asset that will enhance quality
percent more and prefer to shop in
and damage.
of life for current residents and aid in
areas where trees and landscaping are
A lot of good data was collected attracting new ones.
attractive and well maintained.
about each tree in that initial invenThink about the ecological
tory phase, and evaluation of that
Supporting Smaller Communities
boosts, too, Sayers said. Noise
data set sparked discussions about
Farther north in the Saginaw
reduction, oxygen, erosion control,
what data would actually be useful,
Bay watershed, the DNR has partreduced storm water runoff, better wa- Mistor said. Paring down the data
nered with the cities of Au Gres and
ter quality, habitat for wildlife all of being collected helped us maximize
Standish and ReLeaf Michigan on
these are made possible with healthy, the efficiency of the process, and more an effort (funded by the Great Lakes
thriving trees.
phases of the inventory were comRestoration Initiative) to analyze the
areas tree canopy and its overall benpleted.
These are exactly the kind of
But then diminishing financial re- efit in managing storm water runoff.
benefits the DNRs Urban and ComThink of how an opened umbrella
munity Forestry Program and partners sources significantly limited the citys
work to bring to many areas of the

Assessing The Value

Helping Habitat, Wildlife

Sayers said the DNRs urban forestry and forest stewardship program
efforts extend north all the way to
the Lake Superior shoreline. Here

another Great Lakes Restoration Initiative project this one with coastal,
habitat and collaborative benefits is
getting started through the efforts of
the Superior Watershed Partnership
and the city of Marquette.
The goal? Improving the nearshore health of Lake Superior and
reducing runoff pollution in the Dead
River watershed by restoring area
riparian buffers vegetated areas
near a stream, which help shade and
partially protect the stream from the
effects of adjacent land uses.
First, a team of young adults with
the SWP Great Lakes Conservation
Corps will oversee a prioritized planting of native tree species.
Carl Lindquist, executive director
of the Superior Watershed Partnership
and Land Trust, said this project also
will complement ongoing efforts to
restore coastal wetlands, create resilient beaches and more.
In addition to improved water
quality, the area will see improved
habitat conditions for wildlife including migratory birds and important
pollinator species, he said.
Whats happening here is an
innovative approach to fostering increased, strategic forest management
between the cities and townships and
neighboring rural forest landowners.

A Great Lakes Restoration Initiative-supported effort to reduce runoff pollution in the

Dead River (Marquette County) by restoring area riparian buffers is underway in the
Upper Peninsula.

Every Tree Counts

Sayers said with the nations

celebration of Arbor Day right around
the corner (April 29), these important
forestry efforts are timely, encouraging and great news for Michigans
communities of all sizes.
Across the country there is a
growing appreciation of trees and the
realization that a good tree care program is an investment for the future,
he said.
Both individually and collectively, Sayers said each of us can help

trees grow and continue to provide

the things we need and value, like
oxygen, shade and peace of mind.
Contact your city forester, beautification committee or state foresters
office for more information.
And, Sayers added, dont
forget to step outside your front door
now and then, just to enjoy the trees.
Learn more about the DNRs
Urban and Community Forestry
Program at
or contact Kevin Sayers at 517-2845898.n


offers shelter in a downpour. Tree

canopy with leaves and bark that
retain a lot of water works much the
same way, allowing some rain time to
evaporate and slowing down the rest
on its way to the ground.
Lee Mueller, with Davey Resource Group (a division of the
Davey Tree Expert Company), said
that while his company has completed many similar projects across
the United States, this is the first time
theyve been involved in a project
that touches one watershed and is
within rural communities.
Community forestry often concentrates on impacts to large, populated communities, he said. But
Michigans smaller communities have
trees, too.
Smaller communities also often
have little forestry-specific expertise.
This tree canopy analysis project
represents a significant opportunity to
expose two of Michigans communities to forestry best practices, while
delivering tools that will help them
protect, enhance and expand their
community forest for years to come.


Its amazing to think how far Ive come in my personal journey as a bowhunter...By John DiCello

Looking back at how I got started

bought my first bow at a garage sale one spring almost 40

years ago. It was a recurve, and
the stout wooden handle was
wrapped in brown leather. The
limbs were the color of honey
with a glossy finish on the back side,
and there was snake skin on the front.
It looked like an Indian brave could
have used it in years past. When I
looked at that old bow, I imagined the
proud warrior stalking an animal to
feed his family. I could only hope that
someday, I would learn to be half as
good at taking a deer as he was. It was
the coolest looking bow in the world
to a teenager.
When I went out to the woods
with that old bow, I remember my arrows clicking and clanking around in
an old shoulder quiver someone had
given me. It didnt matter in my eyes.
The arrows I used were produced by
Robin Hood Arrow Company if I
recall, and were black, with yellow
and red feathers. I think they were
made of a fiberglass composite. Of
course they were tipped with one of

the few screw in broadheads available at the time - the classic Fred Bear
design. There was a slot in the olive
green colored ferrule where you could
slide a bleeder blade that clicked
into place.
I never did kill a deer with that
setup. No wonder. It was way too
heavy a draw for me at 65 pounds, but
the guys at the local archery shop did
the best they could to make it somewhat shootable. They could tell I just
couldnt wait to get in the woods to
chase those whitetails, and they tried
to help me develop some semblance
of a consistent shot.
When I wasnt shooting that bow
every day for an entire summer, I
was dreaming of taking my first deer
with it. There werent many places
to shoot. My friend and I went to a
feed store and bought a few bales of
straw for targets. (Both he and my
brother had the latest and greatest
Bear Whitetail compound bow)
Our bullseye - of course- was a paper
plate. We set up a little range in the
alley behind my buddys house in

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Detroit. His mother was constantly

reminding us to be looking out for
anyone, and we couldnt shoot when
the neighbors were out doing their
yard work. We didnt shoot when
people were around, except when the
occasional neighbor stopped by to
watch us shoot for a while, not believing we were really intent on killing a
deer with these things. The occasional
rodent made for a lot more fun than
shooting at the old bales. I think we
spent as much time looking for arrows
that blew through the straw bales as
we did shooting.
Although many seasons have
come and gone since I hunted with
that old bow, it was a big part of one
of my favorite bow hunting memories.
The Michigan DNR had made a couple clearings on the state land where
I was hunting, and planted them with
some forage for the local whitetails.
With nothing around our camp for
miles and miles but heavily forested
state land, that food plot was a rookies dream come true. I hadnt a clue
where to begin hunting - until eventu-

ally - even a kid like me realized deer

really seemed to like that stuff! One of
these plots was near a road, which was
important. I didnt go far from a road
or trail in those early years because I
was terrified of becoming lost. I had
a compass my Dad gave me when I
started hunting deer with his old rifle a
few years earlier, but I still wasnt all
that confident using it just yet.
Chasing deer with archery gear
was just growing out of its infancy
stage back then. With the advent of
the compound bow design, hunting
and shooting with archery equipment
was quickly becoming very popular.
I had been reading in my various
hunting magazines about guys hunting
from trees of all things. They said deer
dont look up and wouldnt see you
if you sat in a tree (this was before the
days of the internet; and yes they were
wrong). I thought that was just a great
There was a skinny maple tree on
the edge of this particular food plot,
with a good sized branch not too far
off the ground. This was also before I

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owned a treestand, so I did what any

kid would do. I slung the bow over
my shoulder and shimmied up that
maple like an overgrown inchworm.
If there was ever a dont try this at
home warning needed, its obviously
needed here. But thats how we used
to do it before safe treestands and
safety harnesses. I never go into a tree
without a safety harness anymore and neither should you.
Well, this particular evening
didnt take long to get started. You
can guess by now the odds were not
in my favor to put my first archery
tag on a deer. The first group of does
and fawns came out to the food plot
in late afternoon, and several groups
continued to show up, until I eventually spooked off every last one of
them. I never considered the wind
currents could be taking my scent
toward the deer below me. I could
not judge yardage very well, and with
an ill fitted bow, I struggled to even
pull back the bow string. Besides sitting on the limb of a tree and leaning
against the trunk, one other little thing
called buck fever all contributed
to me shooting every last one of my
arrows into the dirt around my stand!
I was having the time of my life and
was hooked on bowhunting forever. I

The author here with a beautiful buck, reflects back to his first bowhunting days 40
years ago. Author photo
climbed down to collect my arrows
and shimmied back up the tree, but
the deer finally thought better of feeding in the clover while I was there.
Todays public land deer would have
probably run off before I even got

into the tree!

I enjoy reflecting on past hunts at
the time of year while studying maps
and working on my shooting form in
preparation for the coming season,
those simpler, happy times creep back

into my mind. I read my hunting journals that Ive written over the years,
and have the pleasure of re-living
those deer hunts once again.
Its amazing to think how far Ive
come in my personal journey as a
bowhunter, as well as how far weve
come as bowhunters collectively. We
are much more effective hunters today than we were 30 or 40 years ago.
We know so much more about the
biology of deer, and have much better, safer equipment to help us hunt.
At the same time, the deer are more
elusive than ever and learn to stay
just a step ahead of the hunters who
love to spend their autumns trying to
put their tag on one of them. And so
it should be. After all, the challenge
of getting close to these awesome
animals is what fuels the hunters
And so its back to the coffee
and the maps for now, searching for
that perfect stand location. Its back
to practicing with that new bow or
other equipment weve added to our
bow case. This is the time for tinkering with arrow tuning and training to
release that flawless shot a consistent
basis. And every now and then, its
about thinking back to how we got



14500 FOLEY RD., CAPAC, MI 48014

(810) 395-7162





Hes A Happy Man!!!

85 year old takes

possible record!

Karl is a German
By Jerry Lambert refuge
who came to

County is
probably most notorious
for being the route that
many Great Lake State
residents take when traveling to Chicago. The county is neatly tucked into
the southwest corner of our infamous
mitten and its borders include beautiful
Lake Michigan and the Hoosier State,
Indiana. What many of the westbound
travelers may not know is that Berrien County has large sections of rural
habitat that is ideal for producing big
antlered whitetail bucks. This fact was
made evident during the 2015 season,
when an eighty-five year old crossbow
hunter shot a potential new state record
in the senior division.
On November 3, 2015, Karl Gollnast shot a doe and had meat for the
freezer. The next day, November 4, he
once again climbed into a treestand and
this time he was hoping to see a buck.
That is exactly what happened. After
a short wait a buck was seen walking
towards the perched predator.

America in 1954. He
still speaks with a heavy German accent
and told me the following via a phone
interview. I didnt even know how
big he was, when he got close enough
I took the shot. He ran towards a pine
thicket and disappeared. I didnt see
blood so I decided to back out and wait
for my wife to come home to help me
look for the deer. When we went back
out to look, we initially couldnt find
any blood so I went to the pine thicket
and there he was. He only ran about one
hundred yards. My bolt went through
the front right shoulder and exited out
the other side by the leg. Later I found
my arrow, and it was covered in blood.
He was thirty-two yards away when I
hit him. I was surprised to see how actually big he was. I couldnt wait to tell
my son.
Karls buck is a main-frame
10-point that has an additional sticker
point to give it a total of 11. The tall
tined buck scores 163 1/8 net Boone
and Crockett typical points. According

Karl Gollnast
with his trophy
11-pt. that could
be a possible
senior crossbow
typical state
to the Commemorative Bucks of Michigan record book the current senior state
record crossbow typical was shot by Joe
Reidt in 2010, and scores 159 1/8 B&C
points. The overall state record crossbow typical was shot in 2009, by Bruce
T. Edelberg and scored 167 6/8 B&C
net typical points.

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At the end of our phone conversation Karls enthusiasm was still readily
apparent. He happily exclaimed, Im
still excited, I had the buck mounted
and placed it in the family room.
Karl then gave the phone to his wife
and she simply told me, Hes a happy

OPEN 7 DAYS: MON. & TUES. 9-6;

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5/16/10 - MI

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Fishing Lines A to Z
By Mark Romanack

ime once was that fishing lines were the

simple part of fishing. The days of limited
line choices are gone and today anglers are
faced with a myriad of line types, colors
and diameters to pick from.
All the line choices make fishing a little
more complex to understand, but the benefits these
lines bring to the table more than makes up for the
homework needed to stay on top of technology and
fishing trends.


Avid anglers might imagine that in this hightech age, garden variety monofilament would be
outclassed by new technology and new line types.
Actually, traditional nylon monofilament fishing
line continues to dominate a host of critical fishing
categories. The reason monofilament has sustained
itself over the years boils down to function and
Premium quality monofilaments bring to the
party controlled stretch, great knot strength, exceptional abrasion ability and they are reasonable
in cost. I still use and recommend monofilament
for most walleye, trout, salmon, pike and musky
trolling applications, including fishing with in-line
boards, dual board planer mast systems, flatlines
and also downriggers.
I also favor monofilament for casting crankbaits, in-line spinners and also spinnerbaits for
a wealth of species. Fishing topwater baits and
jerkbaits is another job best left to nylon monofilament. For my money Maxima Ultra Green is a great
multi-species and multi-purpose monofilament.




On the spool and on the reel, most anglers could

not tell the difference between co-polymer lines and
nylon monofilament. Essentially co-polymers are
modern fishing lines that tweak in small ways the
primary characteristics of monofilament, providing
the user some modest advantages.
For example, most co-polymers are a little thinner in diameter for their respective tensile strengths
compared to monofilament. Co-polymers also tend
to be softer and have less memory. The lack of
memory helps co-polymers function better on reels
that have small spools like ultra-light gear often
used for perch, panfish and stream trout fishing.
Where co-polymers suffer is they cant typically compete with premium monofilament in the
knot strength and abrasion resistance categories.
For general purpose fishing chores, co-polymers
are very user friendly, widely available and reasonable in cost. Because most anglers dont know
the subtle differences between monofilament and
co-polymer lines, these products tend to get widely
interchanged in their applications.


Fluorocarbon line is different from monofilament and co-polymer lines in that the chemical
A growing number of bass fishermen depend heavily on fluorocarbon lines for their main line. The author used braid make-up comes from combining fluorine, chlorine
and carbon extruded into a single strand line that
and added a three foot leader of fluorocarbon to catch this tanker smallmouth.

Fused Lines

Fused lines are often confused with braided

lines because both have near zero stretch. Fused
lines are generally made with a fiber known as
MicroDyneema and are generally recognized as the
worlds strongest high-tech fiber.
Fused lines tend to be a little stiffer than
braided lines and because of this they dont have
the nasty habit of wrapping around the rod tip. The
disadvantage of fused lines is they are flat and they
dont load onto spinning reel spools as nicely as
monofilament, fluorocarbon, co-polymers or even
Fused lines are also modified to create low
stretch lines suitable for deep water ice fishing
applications. To accomplish this engineers bundle
the fibers to create a line that is super thin, low
stretch and yet doesnt absorb water. Water freezing on the line is a major problem with ice fishing
and most braided lines are useless in temperatures
below freezing. Water penetrates the fibers and then
freezes making it impossible to get the line off the
reel spool!!
Fused lines that are bundled are the solution
to this problem. Since water cant penetrate the
voids in the fibers, the line doesnt freeze. Because
these fused and bundled lines are so super thin,
they have zero tolerance for abrasion. The slightest
nicks cause these lines to loose most of their tensile
strength which means its critically important to cut
and retie often.


Braids are considered ultra-modern fishing

Fluorocarbon lines first hit the market as leader material for clear water fisheries like trout and salmon fishing.
Today, fluorocarbon is still used as leader material and it also gets a fair amount of use as main line for bass, trout
and even walleye fishing applications. Mark Romanack photos
lines, but the truth is fishing lines were braided for
generations before extruded nylon monofilaments
hit the market. What are new in braids are the fibers
used to create them and the braiding processes.

Modern braids are created using Spectra fibers which are amazingly thin, strong and abrasion
resistant. When twisted under pressure a super thin
and ultra-low stretch line is created that handles
much like monofilament.
Not all braids are twisted under pressure and
therefore some less expensive brands tend to be flat
instead of round in shape. Braids like Maximas 8
Strand are round in shape, spool better and cast like
a dream. The trick to spooling these lines is to load
them under pressure. This is achieved by wearing a
pair of leather gloves and squeezing the line tightly
between your fingertips while spooling.
Braids are thin in diameter, but not generally
offered in break strengths below 10 pound test.
Fused lines by comparison are routinely produced
in sizes down to one pound test. A typical Spectra
braid at 10 pound test tensile strength is normally
about the diameter of two pound test monofilament.
Braided lines are ideal for both casting and
trolling situations. Braids excel at vertical jigging,
casting jigs, flippin into heavy cover and trolling
diving planers like the famous Dipsy Diver, SlideDivers and other big water gear.
A growing number of board trollers are using
braid because it lasts much longer than any other
line type. Unfortunately braided lines are not user
friendly when it comes to planer board line releases. Anglers get around this problem by placing a
half hitched rubber band around the braid and then
putting the rubber band into the jaws of the line
Braids are hands down the fastest growing segment in the fishing line industry. As more anglers
discover the unique properties of braid, more and
more are finding applications for them on the water.
Perhaps the biggest disadvantage of braids is
the cost. On the flip side, braid lasts far longer than
monofilament, fluorocarbon, co-polymers and even
fused lines. Top dressing a reel loaded partly with
monofilament is becoming a common sight among
anglers who favor braid. This way they get to enjoy
the properties of braided line, without having to fill
the entire spool with expensive line.
Essentially braids allow anglers to have their
cake and eat it too! While braid isnt going to replace monofilament any time soon, its obvious that
this super line has much to offer the multi-species

High Visibility

A ton of attention has been focused in recent

years on the invisible nature of fluorocarbon. Thats
cool, but anglers are also discovering a growing
need for high visibility fishing lines.
Hi-vis lines are currently available in monofilament, braids, fused lines and also co-polymers.
Making the line more visible to the angler helps in
a number of fishing presentations that require line
For example, when vertical jigging for walleye
I always use high visibility lines to aid in detecting
when my jig is on bottom. The same is true of casting jigs. Often I see the line twitch and know I just
had a bite before I feel the strike.
Steelhead fishermen are also finding unique
ways to use high visibility lines. Recently on the
Kalamazoo River my buddy Josh Crabtree showed
me how using Maxima High Visibility line helps
him direct his plug rods into productive water
seams, log jams and undercut banks.
Trollers who use in-line boards are also using
more and more high visibility line to make it easier
to see the boards from inside the boat and also to
help other anglers spot board lines quicker. The
uses of high visibility lines are growing every year.
Tying directly to the lure when using high visibility lines probably isnt the best decision. Most
guys who fish hi-vis are also using fluorocarbon
leaders at the terminal end. For jigging a two or
three foot leader is ideal. For trolling applications a
six to 10 foot leader of fluorocarbon is ideal.

Sinking Lines

The advancements in fishing line arent
limited to the traditional categories. Sinking lines
like lead core are also being manufactured with
stronger and thinner braids. Making lead core
thinner helps it fish deeper and thats a good thing.
There are lead core lines currently being produced
with both MicroDyneema and Spectra fiber in the
outer sheath.

Not only do these lines fish deeper, they
are more durable and last longer than traditional
nylon and Dacron lead core lines.

Summing It Up

Keeping track of the fishing line types currently

available is a little daunting. By doing some homework anglers can set themselves up with lines that
are the best possible choice for literally any species
and fishing presentation.n


looks like monofilament, but has distinctively

different properties. Fluorocarbon line is denser,
heavier and has more abrasion resistance than
monofilament. Fluorocarbon line also doesnt
absorb water like monofilament which means it
retains its strength, sensitivity and handling characteristics when wet or dry.
Low stretch, greater sensitivity and almost zero
visibility put fluorocarbon line in a class all by itself. This unique line first hit the market as a leader
material primarily aimed at clear water fisheries
such as trout and salmon applications. Bass anglers
quickly latched onto fluorocarbon and many now
use fluorocarbon as main line, largely replacing
both monofilament and co-polymer lines in the
A few of the presentations that fluorocarbon
excels as main line for bass fishing includes drop
shot, fishing weedless jigs, Texas rigged worms and
casting tubes and other soft plastic grubs. Of course
fluorocarbon is also very useful as leader material
and not just because this line type is tough to see
in the water. Fluorocarbon also makes great leader
material for all species fishing applications because
it has more abrasion resistance and low stretch.
Also because this line is invisible in the water anglers can use larger break strengths without sacrificing any results.
For example, when vertical jigging with braids
I tie in a leader of fluorocarbon. Typically Im fishing 10# test braids, but I favor a slightly heavier
12 or 15 pound test fluorocarbon leader. The extra
strength and abrasion resistance at the leader helps
in reducing bite off and other line failures without
hampering in the fishing presentation.
Premium 100% fluorocarbon line is expensive,
but its worth every penny in terms of the abrasion
resistance and virtual invisibility in the water. Hybrid lines that blend fluorocarbon and co-polymers
are unfortunate compromises that sever no master.


This nice walleye was caught trolling

stickbaits close to Au Gres last spring.

Saginaw Bay spring walleyes

Using a variety of techniques, tons of walleyes are caught throughout the Bay during this time of plenty...

aginaw Bay provides one of the best spring

walleye fisheries in the world. Savvy anglers there routinely catch limits of walleyes that range in size from smaller eating
sized gems to large, chunky
lunkers, with big toothy maws
that snap up lures with savage ferocity.
The most consistent fishing starts after the
spawn is over during mid April. Those
post spawn fish really put on the feed bag
as they recover from the riggers of reproduction. About half of the bigger, adult
walleyes migrate to the north end of the
Bay or even into Lake Huron proper soon
after spawning. That migration is
predictable and exploitable though
and knowledgeable anglers really
cash in on this phenomenal fishing opportunity.
May and early June fishing in the Bay is nothing
short of world class too with some of the best fishing of the year available then. Using a variety of
techniques, tons of walleyes are caught throughout
the Bay during this time of plenty. Read on for tips
on how you can cash in on one of Michigans best
Last year we had some excellent early spring
success on Lake Eries walleyes. Therefore, I had
mixed emotions when I moved my boat to Au Gres
during mid-April. Fishing reports there had been

spotty, but that is typical for early April there. After

the fish spawn though, a bunch of them quickly
migrate to the Au Gres area where they chase smelt
during mid to late April. I arrived the day before
my first charter there so I could do a little
prefishing to find some hot areas and
to sort out the bite. I hit the water with
friends Tom Pawlaczyk and Bill Carter on
April 16. There were very few boats on
the water that day with a light northeast
wind and overcast skies that were threatening rain, but it did stay dry. We motored around for a while as I surveyed the
situation by assessing the water clarity in
various areas. I had just installed a
new Lowrance, HDS touch screen,
fish finder/GPS unit, so I was also
learning how to operate that high tech gadget too.
The new unit did find some fish in an area with
stained water, so that is where we set up for our first
trolling pass.
Bill Carter and I have been friends for a long
time and like most fishing buddies, we have
friendly arguments about various fishing topics on a
regular basis. Bill was of a mind set that the larger,
#12, three hook, Deep Husky Jerk baits were better
for spring walleyes than the smaller #10, two hook,
models. I on the other hand thought just the opposite. While it is true that the larger model will dive


By Michael Veine


deeper, that difference can be negated by adding

weight, which I do all the time with trolled crankbaits anyway. I also like Rouges on early spring,
Saginaw Bay walleyes, whereas Bill does not use
them. Bill set a mixture of bare, #12 Huskies while
I set out some weighted #10 Huskies and Rouges. I
attached a 3/8 oz. rubber core sinker about six feet
ahead of those lures and we both adjusted the setback to run about 12-14 down since we were trolling over water 15 to 20 deep . The trolling speed
was at just 1.0 to 1.2 mph in those frigid waters that
were in the low 40s.
We hadnt even gotten all the lures set when we
hooked our first walleye, and that fish was quickly
joined by another one for a double header. For the
next couple hours we enjoyed fast paced action
until we put the 15th fish in the box for a limit
catch. By the end of the trip it was obvious that the
smaller Husky Jerk baits outperformed the larger
ones. The larger ones did catch some fish, but not
as many as the smaller versions. The size of the
fish caught were all in the 22-26 range, so the size
of the lure did not impact the size of the fish caught.
The larger, three hook Rouges that I ran also caught
fish, but not quite as good as the smaller Rouges
performed. Nevertheless, the fishing was outstand-

Saginaw Bay walleyes page 34


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Saginaw Bay eyes:


from page 32


ing and we enjoyed some super successful fishing

trips right close to Au Gres for quite a stint.
The best spring fishing locations and techniques
all depend on two factors: Water clarity and water
temperature dictate where walleyes will concentrate and what they will bite on. Walleyes seem to
hang out more in dirty water on the Bay. Perhaps
its because baitfish naturally gravitate to water
with low visibility to hide from predators. Perhaps
walleyes have the upper edge on catching baitfish
in dirty water. What ever the reason, anglers need
to focus on finding those stained water areas for
optimal success. The best conditions seem to be
when the water is clearing up in an area and where
dirty water meets cleaner water. I prefer water
visibility of about 3-4 feet for optimal fishing success, especially on larger walleyes. When fishing
in stained waters, crankbaits rule during the spring.
The choice of crankbait really depends on the water
temperature. When the temp is in the 30s, then
shallow diving Thundersticks seem to work best
at trolling speeds of 0.8 to 1.0 mph. My favorite
color is gold/black. As the temp starts to warm into
the high 30s and low 40s, then shallow Rouges are
my favorite pulled at about 1.0 to 1.2 mph with my
favorite pattern being purple/gold/white. The low
40s is also when Deep Husky Jerks get worked into
the trolling spread. My favorite Deep Husky Jerk
patterns on the Bay last spring were naked (clear)
and blue/silver/orange. As the water rises into the
high 40s, then Rattling Shad Raps (#5) and regular
Shad Raps (#7) are a good bet, with the rattlers
being better in dirty water. The regular balsa wood
Shad Raps seem better though in cleaner water.
Shad raps in Natural Shad pattern have been my
favorite in that model for a very long time. I like to
troll Shad Raps at 1.5 to 1.7 mph.
When the water visibility completely clears up
in a large area, like it did last year out of Au Gres
during late April, then the fish typically vacate the
shallows and take up residence right on the bottom
in adjacent, deep water. When this happens, about
the only way that I know of to catch those fish
consistently is to slow troll with spinner/crawler
rigs behind bottom bouncers. By slow, Im talking
about 1.0 mph or less at times. The only other option would be to find stained water somewhere else,
which can often involve a long run to distant locations. When the walleyes are tight to the bottom
in cold water, the bites will typically be extremely
lethargic, so super sharp hooks are a must. They
also will be barely hooked most of the time, so
savvy fish fighting techniques will also greatly up
your bite to catch ratio.
Last year we had some outstanding post spawn
walleye fishing out of Au Gres within close proximity to the harbor. In past years though, the better
fishing was well north of Au Gres from Point Lookout north past Whitestone Point. The south end of
the Bay hosts some fantastic walleye fishing during
April too with the area from Bay City to Linwood
in 10-25 feet of water being very good.
The month of May last year saw a lot of very
clear water over much of the Bay. We had top

This nice walleye was caught trolling in deeper water south of Pt. Au Gres during early June, 2015.
notch fishing from Pt. Au Gres south to the Sagining Bar in shallow water, but only when it was
windy enough to put a chop on that super clear
water. If it was calm though, then slow trolling in
deeper water with crawlers was necessary. During
mid-May last year, The Slot from Sebawaing to the
south was absolutely on fire. It was so good that I
made that 18 mile run from Au Gres there on several occasions when it was calm. We were catching
10-15 keepers per hour there, which is good fishing
by anyones standards. As May wore on, the fish
moved northward up the Slot off the islands where
the fishing remained off-the-charts good. During
early June though, the best fishing that I heard of
was on the west side of the Bay in shallow water.
But from about June 5 on, the deep water area from
Point Au Gres south to Buoys 1 and 2 on both the
east and west side of the shipping lane, served up
some of the most consistent, easy limits of walleyes

for the entire year.

Spring fishing on Saginaw Bay is an ever changing affair with walleyes moving around in their
never ending search for abundant forage and favorable water conditions. With walleye numbers at
or near all time high levels on the Bay these days,
anglers never had it so good. The new for 2016,
eight walleye daily bag limit, will certainly entice
a lot more anglers. That expanded bag though will
make it harder for anglers to catch their limits unless a savvy fishing stagey and fine tuned program
is used. Spring is the time of year when anglers
are most likely to find easy pickings where limit
catches will still likely be the rule on the Bay.
The author offers fishing charters specializing
in Lake Erie and Saginaw Bay walleyes. Contact
Mike Veine at or 734475-9146.n

World Class
Trophy Whitetail Deer
Hunting Lodge & Preserve
A 5,000 square foot lodge located in the heart of Michigans Northern
Lower Peninsula. We are proud to offer some of the best whitetail
deer in the country. Our herd consists of several bucks that gross
over the 200 mark, with a few that net over 200 typical!
For hunters we offer hunt-of-a-lifetime opportunities.


Take I-75 N to Exit 313 (M-27 North)

Take M-27 N to US-23 in Cheboygan
Take US-23 East 19 Miles To Property On Right


Our hunts are in a heavily forested area, located along Lake Huron
with Canada just across the lake to the north east.


Fire is no doubt a living

creature of sorts which
requires oxygen and fuel to
survive. Primitive humans were
able to ascend to the top of
the food chain primarily due to
being able to create and use
fire in a constructive manner...

here is no question they knew

it could easily become a
raging beast in its own near
mystical might whenever
fire went out of control. Fire
would ease humans out of the
stone age, through the various ages of
metallurgy and even industry (steam
and you name it) which remains an
ongoing and advancing process still

An example in history could relate

to the knights in shining armor who
couldnt have done their heroic deeds
if it hadnt been for the individuals
behind the scenes who knew how to
handle fire and a forge to create everything the knights required (one of my
favorite TV shows is Forged in Fire
on the History Channel).
Certain survival situations even
during our modern times require
knowing how to properly make a fire,
which can be quite critical per life and
death. I always carry the means to create fire whenever Im in the outdoors,
and Ive been in wilderness situations
when it was a prime necessity. I will
always remember the time when I was
bowhunting for caribou in the Arctic
and my hunting companion was showing signs of hypothermia while we
waited for our Inuit guides coming
by canoe on an ocean fiord to locate
and pick us up, and darkness had

settled in.
There was plenty of driftwood
brought in by the tides in this region
which is devoid of trees, but driftwood by itself isnt usually easy to
get a fire started with. Fortunately the
Inuits (aka Eskimos) had shown me a
shrub (that reminds me of sagebrush)
that when properly ignited, would turn
into a sudden and hot blaze and get
the driftwood to burn. The large fire I
quickly created thawed out my hunting companion and allowed the Inuit
guides to spot us on the isolated bluff.
From the beginning of time,
Mother Nature has used fire to literally cleanse certain matters such as
aging forests and grassland prairies
and to start new and revived plant life.
This was usually done by lightning
strikes and it is no doubt the manner
in which primitive humans were first
introduced to fire, which would
lead to them learning how to tame


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and train the beast and eventually

create it.
A prime example of Mother
Nature using the beast to straighten
matters out is Yellowstone Park which
entails 80 percent forestland with
the predominate tree species being
lodgepole pine (which gets its name
for being the preferred poles for
Indian teepees). Since its inception as
a National Park, the forests in Yellowstone were continually protected from
fire until the late 1960s (remember all
those Smokey the Bear commercials
of the day), when it was realized that
fire, when controlled, was actually
beneficial as it removed dead debris,
brush and opened the understory. The
lodgepole pine also required fire in
order to propagate because intense
heat from fire was required to open
the pinecones and release the seed.
By 1988, Yellowstone Parks
lodgepole pine trees were 250 years
old, and with a 300 year lifespan, they
were near their limit. Several small
fires had started in July and were being monitored. However 1988 was a
dry summer that year, featuring a long
drought, and winds from dry storms
(thunderstorms with plenty of lightning but no rain or moisture of any
sort). One nasty fire was started in a
nearby National Forest when a timbercutter dropped a cigarette and winds
eventually created a firestorm, which
is the beast with its own attitude
that even creates its own winds and
atmosphere (this is what happened
in the Thumb with the Great Forest
fire of 1881). Many of the smaller
fires linked up due to high winds and
more firestorms resulted. At its peak,
more than 9000 firefighters were on
hand to battle the fire which was the
largest in Yellowstone Parks history
to date, and 36 percent of the park was
burned. The fires wouldnt go completely out until cooling autumn rains
arrived. Mother Nature has her way at
Park officials received a lot of
media criticism over the fire and
media coverage during the fire were
sometimes inaccurate (gloom, doom
and hysteria makes for great news,

The pasture was very dry and

there was no wind at all when I lit
the match, and everything was going
as planned until the beast decided
to wake up, thanks to an unexpected
strong breeze out of the wrong direction. I had a shovel along to beat out
any errant flames and the beast and
I were suddenly doing battle with
me swinging away like a maddened
Berserker. I eventually won out, but
not before I was missing one eyebrow
and half a moustache. I decided right
then and there that playing with fire
wasnt my cup of tea.
That is why I hired Don Schank
of Michigan Firepros, LLC (1-810656-6622) out of Clifford, when
my prairie grass fields that are in

The completed controlled burn just after the beast has died.
CRP needed burning to beef up and
improve habitat. I admit I was a tad
nervous the first time, but Schank is
a true beast-master and works with
a skilled crew (its not a one-man
job, trust me). Two teams going in
opposite directions start a back burn,
with each team being backed by a

Don Schank of Michigan Firepros LLC using a drip-torch

to begin completing the ring of fire with a tail wind.

person on an ATV equipped with a

water tank and pressure hose to keep
the fire in check and going the right
direction. Eventually the two teams
meet with the wind directly behind
them, and a full ring of fire has been
formed, all of it heading to join the
rest of the flames at the center, and
the fire with a tailwind has a real attitude.
When the ring of fire comes
together, the beast really rears up
toward the sky in swirling ultraviolet flames similar to a miniature
tornado. Then suddenly, poof, the
beast is dead, because all the fuel has
been devoured. What is left is a solid
black, apparently lifeless field, but
that will soon change with the color
of green grass poking up through the
charred blackness. Then there will
be a profusion of prairie wildflowers
everywhere and they will dominate
the landscape until the prairie grasses
gain steam and pass them by with
renewed vigor.
Schank and his crew recently
burned a couple of my fields and
Im truly anticipating watching
everything grow back into amazing
wildlife habitat. Taming the beast
and keeping it under control is truly a
beneficial conservation tool.n


whether or not it is accurate). The

reality was that all the conditions for
a fire of this nature were ready and
waiting in Yellowstone Park, and it
wasnt a matter of if, but when, and
the summer of 1988 was the time.
My cousin John Lounsbury was
the Lake District Ranger in Yellowstone Park at that time, and he invited
me out to join him in September 1989
for a patrol using horses to reach our
backcountry destination, the Thorofare Ranger Station, which is 40
miles from the nearest road. To say
I was in Heaven in this wilderness
environment is an understatement,
and I was given a firsthand opportunity to view the fires end result from
the year before. Unlike what certain
media reports implied, the Parkland
was far from being a blackened
moonscape (I took plenty of photos
to prove that fact).
Certainly there were areas that
were scorched pretty good (my new
leather chaps quickly took on an antiqued sooty look), but in the ashes a
year after the big fire, I could see new
life already sprouting up with a multitude of lodgepole pine seedlings everywhere. I also saw some skeletons
where elk here and there were trapped
and succumbed to the flames, but it
wasnt anywhere near the graveyard
full of skeletons reported by some
media who Im sure didnt have the
wherewithal to even venture into the
extremely isolated wilderness areas
to verify matters (obviously most of
the wildlife knew how and where to
skedaddle). Some of the fires actually
had been ground fires, and trees
were left alive and standing with only
the understory removed.
I would again accompany my
cousin John on a similar trip six years
later in the fall of 1995, and a real
eye opener it turned out to be. Some
previous critics had said Yellowstones scorched soil would be left
infertile from the intense heat, and
that couldnt have been further from
the truth. What I saw was a forest
reawakened with new life, and the
little sprouts I had seen poking out of
the ashes six years before had become
young trees with a lengthy future.
Certainly there was still a charred,
dead tree poking out here and there,
but only a faint reminder of the big
1988 fire that would soon completely
Burning grassland has always
been a method to improve matters,
because fire removes old thatch,
eliminates certain weeds, as well as it
warms the soil in springtime to give
matters an extra jumpstart, and the
ashes also leave behind beneficial
nutrients. With this in mind some
years back, I decided to burn my
horse pasture to improve the grazing (Native Americans often did this
in the Great Plains to attract buffalo
herds to plusher prairie grasses near
their villages).


Alpena Region Doubleheader
Thunder Bay/Hubbard Lake

Many of the trips on the big water

f you are looking to get in on
result in a mixed bag of trout and
some spectacular fishing then
salmon with walleye mixed in. CatchLake Huron or Hubbard Lake
ing four species on a single trip gives
should be a consideration this
you the Huron Slam! On more than
year. Located in the northeast
one occasion, we have landed five and
corner of the beautiful Lower
six species during a trip. Walleye,
Peninsula, this destination is worth
steelhead, lake trout, coho, chinook,
your time to plan a vacation to come
and explore. A unique small city with and Atlantic salmon make up most of
the catches. Fishing the areas of Thuna shipwreck theme, Alpena is home
der Bay itself, Rockports
to Thunder Bay National
Nordmeer wreck and off
Marine Sanctuary located on
the point of False Presque
the waters of Lake Huron.
Isle are the best locations all
This 4,300 square mile area
spring and summer. These
encompasses more than 200
spots hold fish in shallower
shipwrecks that you can fish
water during spring and
near or visit on the glass botthen move deeper as the
tom boat and is the only freshsummer progresses and the
water marine sanctuary of
water temperature warms
its kind. Visiting the NOAA
building is worth your
To catch a mixed
time if you are vacabag
of species it is
tioning here.
Host of Great Lakes important
to run lures
Fishermans Digest TV throughout the water
Alpena Countys
column. Having lures
Lake Huron shoreline offers some
up high (shallow) and running them
of the best fishing that Michigan has
progressively deeper nearer the boat
to offer. Numerous species of readwill present lures to different species.
ily biting fish make this a unique and Spoons set behind a planer board with
amazing fishing destination. Alpena
a 1-2 ounce bead-and-chain sinker
and Rockport offer access to the most will target steelhead, walleye and
consistent fishing on the sunrise side
Atlantic salmon. Run these all sumof the state. Being located on the East mer on the furthest planer board from
shore of the mitten offers shelter from the boat.
the prevailing westerlies that can creTo target mid-depths, copper and
ate some bumpy seas that are often
lead core lines off boards are hard to
associated with Great Lakes fishing.
beat. I run copper because it requires
Most mornings have glass calm waless line (1/2) of the amount of line
ters which make for a very enjoyable that lead needs to achieve the same
time chasing some trophy class fish
depth. To target the deepest fish,
located here.
Dipsy Divers and downriggers will

By John Bergsma

Lake Huron

Many of the trips on the big water result in a mixed bag of trout and salmon with
walleye mixed in. Catching four species on a single trip gives you the Huron Slam!
give you the best lure presentations.
This side of the state can be a
bit tougher to get on the bite. I have
found Flintstone spoons will get you
more strikes consistently. A variety
of bright colored, flashy spoons will
give you lots of steady action. Dont
be afraid to try magnum spoons even
though the bait fish are smaller. The
extra flash and vibration will trigger
many fish. Trolling speeds from 2-2.5
mph seem to work best for all species.
June and July offers some incredible walleye action. Saginaw Bay

walleyes head north in search of food

after spawning. These larger fish
start showing up in late May and are
often targeted in Thunder Bay during the evening or after dark trolling
stick baits in 8-20 of water. July and
August can be a great daytime crawler
harness bite. Fish are generally
caught in 20-30 foot range with either
snap weights or bottom bouncers.
This crawler bite is not just happening in Thunder Bay, fishing also
can be great off the port of Rockport
just outside the drop-offs.





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Hubbard Lake

This is a lake that is near and

dear to my heart as Ive been fishing
it for over 25 years. Spanning 8,850
acres with a maximum depth of 85,
Hubbard can yield great catches of
walleye and bass throughout the year.
Three of the best times to target fish
are early season, late summer, and
first ice.

Opener through May

Walleye are generally staged in

shallower water out to 15 of water.
The fish have just finished spawning
and remain in the shallow areas of
the lake feeding in the cold shallow
water. This time of year is primarily a night time bite with very few
fish caught during the day. Try using
stick baits such as Husky Jerks and
Rattlin Rogues behind planer boards
at 1.5-1.9 mph.

Late Summer

The deep bite is on! Fish head out

to escape the heat, suspending themselves 30-40 down in about 60-70
of water. Target your lures around
the baitfish hanging out around the
thermocline. Short and fast wiggling
cranks such as hot-n-tots, Ripshads
and even Shad Raps will get you
into the fish. To get them down to

the fish, use 2, 3, or 4 oz. Off-Shore

snapweights behind planar boards.
Tattle flags are very helpful in detecting some of light biting smaller fish
that fill this lake as well.
Smallmouth are very common
throughout the lake all summer long.
They can be caught in the shallows
around the entire lake. Fish tend to
primarily feed on rusty crayfish and
will hit well in 5-10 of water on
many different presentations. Crankbaits, tube jigs and topwater will get
you plenty of action. Larger fish
generally hold up just off the dropoffs
and can be targeted with the drop
shot method. The current state record
smallmouth, 9.32 pounds, was caught
October 18, 2015 on a drop shot rig
out of this great fishery.

First Ice

Tip-ups seem to be what works

best getting these finicky fish to
respond. Jigging works but tip-ups
will consistently put more fish on the
ice. Blue (emerald) and Grey (spot
tail) shiners are the baits of choice.
A small treble hook in the dorsal, set
several feet off the bottom will result
in a marathon of flag chasing. The
north and south end launches are
the best for ice anglers to access the
drop-offs that consistently hold fish.

Alpena and
Rockport offer
access to the
most consistent
fishing on the
sunrise side of
the state.
Set up near these drop-offs in the
deep water flats (40-60). Fish will
bite all day long and limit catches are
common during January. Giant yellow perch, some pushing 2 pounds,
can often top off a nice mixed bag
catch for the day.


I have fished in and around the

lakes of the Alpena region of Michigan for most of my life. Fishing has
gotten better! I now fish often with
friend and area charter captain Steve

Hubert from Chum Bucket guide

service. Steve is knowledgeable and
fun to fish with. If you want to learn
a bunch about the area, then get ahold
of him and set up a fun day on the
You can get his information and
also get a fishing report for the region
on our website under the Alpena destination tab. www.fishermansdigest.
com as for me your humble fisherman
Im off to fish another destination
and Ill be sure to let you know the


with your host


Visit our website and find out about . . .

Destinations Fishing Reports
Our Show Cooks Corner


Experiences I would never forget...By Darryl Quidort

Idle thoughts

ve been fortunate enough to have

spent a lot of time traveling, hunting, fishing, and camping. Along
the way there have been many
experiences that, at the time, I
was sure I would never forget.
But, truth is, as time slips smoothly by,
many memories fade into the mist of
the past. There they rest until one day
when a similar experience, a line in a
song, or a page in an old journal brings
to mind idle thoughts of the past.
I recently came across a picture in
an old photo album (remember those?)
that reminded me of an interesting river crossing experience I had while on
a bow hunting trip in Montana years
ago. The Ferry was written under
the old photo. In pioneer days the wide
Missouri River was a major obstacle
for a traveler. Now-a-days we dont
even slow down as we speed across it
on a modern highway bridge. However, in this case there wasnt a bridge
across the Missouri River for over
The authors unique ferry ride in the middle of the Montana wilderness. Author photo
100 miles upstream or down. My map
showed the word ferry at the end of at the end of the lonely road during the sign that said the ferry ran from 7 am
people had used the ferry in the last
the dirt, county road. Hmmm. I arrived night. My headlights revealed a small to 7 pm. So, I waited.
couple of years. No wonder they never
I was watching across the river
wasted the money to build a bridge
with binoculars when, at 7 am sharp,
here. I hope you dont get paid by
an old man came out of his trailer,
the head, I joked. Bill showed a big
started up his 4-wheeler, and rode the toothless grin.
40 yards to work. The ferry soon came
After I had pulled my truck back
slowly across the big river. When the
unto solid ground on the other side of
ferry hit the dirt bank, the man waved the river, I returned and offered Bill
to signal me to drive on. The small raft a tip. Oh no thanks, I dont need it,
only (barely) held one vehicle and it
the county pays me, he grinned. Its a
Join The Fun and Help A Cause That Touches Us All
rocked and rolled as I carefully drove government job!
my pickup aboard. Im Bill, the old
Another old photo, although
June 11, 9 - 5 & June 12, 9 - 3
man shook my hand, then turned to
faded and out of focus, reminded me
his work mumbling something like,
of a Marquette County deer hunt in
Sure hope this old thing starts, its
Michigans Upper Peninsula. My huntThe Shoot Consists of 30 Various 3-D Targets Through
ing buddy, Dan, had a neighbor that
A Wooded Course with Targets Ranging from
small shed I saw an ancient Farmall had hunted the UP back in the good
10 to 25 Yards (Fun for the Whole Family)
tractor propped up on blocks with
old days. He told us tales of hunting
the big swamps along the Escanaba
The Shooting Fee will be $15.00 per round. Each time you
River. Search out the high ground
register to shoot your name goes in a drawing for the
engine purred smoothly to life. While hummocks out there in the swamps,
prizes, ranging from bows to oil changes.
holding the clutch in with one hand,
he said. Thats where youll find those
Bill slid the gear shift into low gear.
big bucks. After looking at the huge,
As he let out the clutch the tractors
chocolate colored racks hanging on
wheels began to turn. The left wheel,
his wall, well, we knew we just had to
with the tire removed, began to wind
try it.
in the cable that drew us slowly across
Getting there was half the fun, as
Come roll with us, theres always a way!
the river.
they say, but we finally got our camp
The raft was held in place by two
set up back in the swamp. By slogsteel cables connected to a larger
ging through the swamps in hip boots
cable which stretched clear across the we located some hummocks that
mighty river. The timbers of the raft
were shown on our topo maps. Then
groaned and the cables strained as we we made a great discovery. At the
were pulled out into the swift curfar end of the hummocks there were
rent. I had noticed a very small row
discernible, although now completely
boat, which I gathered was plan B if overgrown, trails leading through
With This Coupon - Expires 6-9-2016
something went wrong.
the swamp to another hummock. The
old trails were left from the lumbering
10% Of Any
a log book, wrote down my license
over a century before. Apparently
Mathews Halon Purchase number, and asked me to sign. From era
the lumbermen had cut the cedar trees
Will go to benefit this shoot.
the book, I noticed that less than 500
and laid them flat to be covered by the





Northern Lower Peninsula veneer log thefts

Investigation continues into thefts in Cheboygan, Charlevoix and Emmet counties

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falling snow. When packed, the snow

became ice, making a winter road
over which sleds, loaded high with
big White Pine logs, could be pulled
by teams of horses or oxen. We began
to search out the old trails that led us
to secret high ground ridges, many
that werent on our maps.
While hunting one day, I was
sneaking down the old logging trails
from one area of high ground through
the swamp to the next little ridge of
high ground. The hummocks were
from a quarter mile to a half mile
apart and the old trails always tempted
me to explore onward. It was a dreary,
misty, day and as I approached each
new hummock I expected to see the
big UP buck of my dreams walking
slowly through the fog. On each hummock I noticed large, moss covered,
decaying pine stumps which were all
that remained of the giant trees the
loggers had removed more than 100
years before. Then, as I reached the
last hummock, the farthest one into
the swamp, a sight caused me to stop.
Several huge White Pine logs laid
there, side by side, right where the
loggers had left them long ago. They
had been dragged to the trail but never
taken out of the swamp. I wondered if
an early spring thaw had spoiled the
ice road and prevented the logs from
reaching the lumber mill.
Although I had seen old pine
stumps all over Northern Michigan,
I had never imagined the logs taken
from them. Each perfectly straight
log was about three feet in diameter,
16 feet long, and completely covered
with a growth of heavy, green moss.
It seemed such a waste. As I walked
down the small ridge, I came to several logs lying right by their stumps.
The limbs had been removed but they
hadnt been cut to length or moved
from where they fell. One giant stump
was nearly four feet in diameter, the
rotting log nearly waist high as I
walked along it. Then, in the mist at
the farthest end of the hummock, I
saw stumps with complete, 150 foot
tall pine trees rotting near them. The
huge trees had been left exactly as
they fell. The naked old branches
reached skyward from the moss covered fallen logs like ghostly, skeletal
arms reaching up into the fog. It was
weird. Standing there, beside the
fallen monarchs in the eerie silence of
the swamp, I felt like the first visitor
to an ancient battlefield.
Sadly, there were no survivors,
every single White Pine on the hummock had been felled by the loggers
crosscut saws.n

Michigan Department of
Natural Resources conservation officers are continuing
to investigate the theft of
sugar maple logs from public
state-managed lands in three
northern Lower Peninsula
Three males in their
mid-20s, one each from
Cheboygan, Charlevoix and
Emmet counties have been One of the felled maple trees cut down with
arrested and charged with
the bottom section removed. MDNR photo
1-year misdemeanors or
5-year felonies for removal
sites being discovered, Drogowski said.
of forest products. Names are being withheld pending
Samples of the logs sold to mills were recovered as
evidence. DNR foresters were able to help match these
The arrest warrants were issued by prosecutors in
logs to trees at the cutting sites.
Cheboygan and Charlevoix counties. Officers expect
With other evidence, witnesses and statements, ofmore charges to be authorized as the investigation
ficers were able to obtain the felony and misdemeanor
moves forward.
arrest warrants.
Late last year, conservation officers began receiving
Now that spring has arrived, more people are getting
public complaints about large sugar maple trees being
out into the woods. Conservation officers encourage
cut on state forestland. Only the thickest part of the
citizens to report any locations where trees have been
trees the lowest 8-12 feet was taken most often.
cut on state-managed land, within close proximity to
In many cases, there were several valuable saw logs
trails and roads, most often with only the lower portion
left on the site to rot in the woods. More than 100 logs
of the trees removed.
were allegedly stolen.
To report information on this case, contact Lt. James
This is a clear case of thieves stealing what belongs
Gorno at 989-732-3541 or call the Report All Poaching
to all of Michigans citizens, said Sgt. Greg Drogowski
hotline at 1-800-292-7800. Those providing tips may
of the Gaylord District office. An analogy to the wasted remain anonymous. The RAP line offers rewards to
timber left in the woods is that of a poacher illegally kill- tipsters. Amounts vary depending on the incident being
ing a deer and taking only the back straps (tenderloins). investigated and the value of the information provided.
Investigators developed several suspects with the
Michigan conservation officers are fully commishelp of citizens and members of the timber industry.
sioned state peace officers who provide natural resources
These suspects allegedly continued to steal veneer maple protection, ensure recreational safety and protect citilogs from state land. The logs were sold to various sawzens by providing general law enforcement duties and
lifesaving operations in the communities they serve.
Multiple sites were discovered and the total value of
Learn more about Michigan conservation officers by
stolen timber is tens of thousands of dollars, with more


DNR launches Turkey

Tracts hunters program


uilding on the success of its

Grouse Enhanced Management Sites (GEMS) program,
the Michigan Department
of Natural Resources has
launched an initiative for
hunters in pursuit of wild turkeys.
The DNRs Turkey Tracts program was introduced just prior to the
April 18 spring turkey hunting season
opener. The effort is designed to highlight public hunting areas where intensive habitat management for turkeys
has been conducted.
These areas will provide beginning turkey hunters with places to go
where the habitat is ideal for these big,
popular gamebirds, said Al Stewart,
DNR upland gamebird specialist.
Reintroduction Success
Wild turkeys are found in all 68
counties of the Lower Peninsula and
several of the 15 counties in the Upper
Peninsula, where the species has continued to expand its range.
Wild turkey revitalization has
become an eventual reintroduction
success story in Michigan that took
decades to realize.
Turkeys, previously plentiful in


ologist who oversees the Allegan game

area, said the site has a unique place in
Michigans wild turkey history.
After wild turkeys were extirpated (destroyed or removed from an
area), Allegan was the first release site
in Michigan where they were reintroduced, Mills said. As they reproduced, they were trapped and relocated
across the state, so Allegan is really the
base for all the wild turkeys across the
Stewart said the willingness of local
businesses to partner with the DNR on
the GEMS program often by offering discounts for goods and services
to hunters who use the areas is also a
big part of the Turkey Tracts project.
He said hunters who visit the Allegan State Game Area Turkey Tract
are eligible for discounts available at a
local eatery, hotel and sporting goods
Turkey Tracts fit right in with
the DNR Wildlife Divisions goals to
provide unique hunting opportunities
and economic benefits to surrounding
communities, promote hunter recruitment and retention and to highlight

Another reason the roughly 50,000acre Allegan State Game Area was
selected for the first Turkey Tract is significant support there from the National
Wild Turkey Federation, the DNRs
partner on the Turkey Tracts program.
DNR Wildlife Division Chief Russ
Mason, who spoke about the importance of the many partnerships the
DNR forms with conservation groups,
singled out the turkey federation for
special praise.
Its always NWTF thats the
among the first on board to help us out
on projects, Mason said.
Several speakers at the dedication
ceremony made the same point.
Ryan Boyer, a regional biologist
with National Wild Turkey Federation,
highlighted a nearly 200-acre stand of
oak savannah at the dedication site that
recently was rehabilitated by brush
hogging the young growth.
The rehab project was paid for the
by the turkey federation.
Boyer said with that young growth
removed, the stand is a perfect candidate for controlled burns to revitalize
the grass.
Art Pelon, president of the Michigan Chapter of the National Wild
A partnership between the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the
Turkey Federation, reiterated a comNational Wild Turkey Federation is creating Turkey Tract hunting areas. The first was mon refrain, Whats good for turkeys
is good for other creatures, too.
dedicated at the Allegan State Game Area in April. MDNR photo
Everything benefits from projects
this, from deer to Karner blue butMichigan, were wiped out of the state
the benefits of wildlife management, terflies, Pelon said. Its been an honor
by habitat loss and unregulated hunting. Stewart said.
to work with the DNR on a project of
Numerous attempts at reintroduction
this size. This is a wonderful opportuMore
were made, beginning in 1919.
nity not just for average hunters, but for
Birds were brought to Michigan
disabled hunters, too, to go to a place
from other states, including Iowa and
thats accessible.
Missouri, and efforts were made to imOak Savanna
prove habitat, which eventually proved woodcock habitat is found, Turkey
Tracts are ideal for southern Michigan
Mills said the work of rehabilitatsuccessful. Some turkeys also were
ing the oak savannas at Allegan helps
relocated from the southern part of the game areas.
The more than 5,000-acre Turkey preserve what was once an important
state to the northern Lower Peninsula.
at Allegan is the first of what
habitat in Michigan, but has almost
In 1977, only 400 turkeys were
harvested during the Michigan hunting
We have few oak savannas left
season. However, by 2014, annual har- Tracts across southern Michigan.
We could eventually develop
in Michigan, Mills said. A lot of the
vest figures had eclipsed 30,000 birds.
Turkey Tracts at a number of our state areas that were originally oak savannas
Importance Of Allegan
were timbered off, and because they
The first Turkey Tract recently was game areas, Stewart said. We hope
had such rich soils, they were convertto have some of them established
dedicated at the Allegan State Game
within the next year. Most of the game ed to agriculture.
Area, a place where the state reintroMills said oak savannas are an exareas have good turkey populations
duced turkeys from Pennsylvania in
and were already doing habitat work ample of a fire-dependent habitat. Land
managers have suppressed wildfires
on these areas.
Mark Mills, the DNR wildlife bi-

Kenny Darwin photo

over the decades.
The fire kills the small trees and
brush, but spares the larger trees and
the grass regenerates, he said. There
is a whole suite of insects and wildlife
that use oak savannas.
Mills said plenty of conservation
organizations have an interest in rehabilitating oak savannas.
One of the groups that puts in a
lot of work at Allegan is the Toledo
Zoo, Mills said. They come out here
and collect Karner blue butterflies,
breed them, then bring them back, but
they release the offspring elsewhere to
establish new colonies.
The main thing Karner blue
butterflies need is lupines (a flowering plant). They feed on lupines like
monarch butterflies feed on milkweed.
Lupines are kind of uncommon in
Michigan, but there are places in the
area where there are carpets of them.
They really only grow in oak savannas.
Learn To Hunt
The nearby Barry State Game
Area is the focus of a new Learn to
Hunt initiative, which is a partnership
between the DNRs Recruitment, Retention and Reactivation program, the
National Wild Turkey Federation and
Michigan State University.
Fourteen novice turkey hunters have
been receiving instruction in turkey
hunting and will participate in a hunt at
the Barry State Game Area, with the aid
of volunteer guides, later this month.
The National Wild Turkey Federation is offering a reward of up to $5,000
for information leading to a conviction
of the person or persons responsible
for destroying the new Turkey Tracts
kiosk at the Allegan State Game Area
in Allegan County.
The damage was done April 15,
three days after opening of the first
Turkey Tracts site was celebrated at
Anyone with information regarding
this incident is asked to call the 24-hour
DNR Report All Poaching (RAP) line
at 800-292-7800. Information may be
left anonymously.
Check out a
to learn more about turkey hunting in


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Black Powder Shooting Sports

Hand Rifling a Barrel...

at a
What are you doin scratching a
perfectly good smooth-bored
barrel? A gentleman asked



ell, were improving it, C. W.

Charley Sedgley said without
hesitation. You smoothbore
shooters need to catch up with
the times. Technologys a
movin on.
Bill Hoover paused, maintaining a gentle grip
on the wooden t-handle at the end of a four-foot
steel bar that extended from the rifling machines
headstock. Hoover pushed the steel rod back to the
headstock. An oily hickory rod popped from the
muzzle end of an octagon barrel.
We just started rifling this barrel blank, Sedgley continued as he brushed tiny metal chips from a
silver metal bit imbedded in the hickory rod. Care
to stay and watch?
Gunmakers Hall is located on the home
grounds of the National Muzzle Loading Rifle Association, in Friendship, Indiana. At the national
shoots, held in June and September, exquisite longrifles, fowlers and pistols fill display racks inside
the two-story log structure. On the buildings back
porch and under the adjacent pavilion black powder
gun-builders demonstrate their trade, preserving the
intricacies of crafting a fine 18th-century arm.
On that pleasant mid-June evening, the spectators milled among the work benches; experienced
gun builders chatted, debated and laughed; and to
one side, Bill Hoover and Charley Sedgley rifled an
octagon barrel by hand.
Bill Hoover wore a greenchecked trade shirt, faded-gray
knee breeches soiled from his
days labor, knee socks and
cowhide moccasins. He looked
the part of a colonial gunsmith,

By Dennis Neely

I stand back about three feet, lean forward on my left foot, and rock back on my right foot, which draws the float
in one, fluid motion, Bill Hoover said, as he started cutting a groove in the barrel blank. Wild Rivertree photo
which added authority and authenticity to his teachings.
That tool holder is made of hickory, Hoover
said, beginning the instruction as the gentleman
bent over and adjusted his bifocals for a closer look.
The woodgrain runs lengthwise, ninety-degrees to
the cutter (edges). Its set so the grain wears better.
We call it a float. The old books call it a rifling
head. Its attached to the rifling rod, which is
attached to the guide rod, which you just saw me
push in.
The rifling rod is steel, Sedgley explained,
drilled and tapped with an internal thread. Bill
turned down the floats end and cut external threads
on a metal lathe. No one said you couldnt turn a
wood thread on a metal lathe, he added with a wry
The barrel we are rifling was made by Ed Rayl

from West Virginia, Hoover continued. Its octagon, 42 inches long, 13/16 inch (across the flats)
at the breech, tapering to 3/4 inch (at the muzzle),
which will give the gun better balance. Its smoothbored, what we call .30-caliber today. In the late
18th century, a gun-maker wouldve described the
bore as 170 balls to the pound, meaning you could
cast that many balls from a pound of lead that will
fit the bore.
After this barrel is rifled, it will still be
.30-caliber, because the bore is measured land to
land, not bottom of groove to bottom of groove.
The grooves we are cutting will be .006 to .007
(inch) deep, or about a thickness and a half of a human hair, Hoover said.
Sedgley took over instructing once Hoover began pulling the guide rods wooden t-handle. Its
considered impolite to talk to the puller, because

A carefully machined slot in the hickory float rod (top left) accepts the cutter bit (bottom left). The small round hole makes it easy to remove the cutter and/or add a shim. After
each cut the shavings are wiped from the cutter (top right), then oil is brushed on the bit and float rod to lubricate the next cut. The swarf, as the shavings are called, should
be fine and uniform in shape (bottom right). Wild Rivertree photo
The crack is the ball breaking the sound barrier
(1,125 feet per second), and thats usually when
a worked up load is at its optimum or peak efficiency.
We only pull one groove at a time, Hoover
continued, because we lack the physical ability
to pull more than one. We usually pull ten times
per groove. We are scrape cutting, so the cutter
head cuts in both directions. Thats twenty cuts per
groove. On this barrel we are going to cut seven
grooves that will be about .075-inch wide, making
the lands about .065-inch wide.
On what Hoover called the head end of the
rifling machine, the guide rod passes through the
center of a flat, round steel plate. This dividing plate has four circles of holes, each equally
spaced. The inner circle has 10 holes, then 12, 14
and 16 holes. Hoover said the plate will index any
groove pattern from one to sixteen, except thirteen
and nine.
For the seven grooves, small wooden pegs
filled every other hole on the 14-hole circle. The
cutter starts at the top. A rolled cloth patch fills that
hole. A steel pin locks the dividing plate in position.
While hes pulling, Sedgley said, Im
back at the cutter end, dabbing oil and wiping the
swarf, the fine shavings, off the cutter bit. If the
cutter is sharp and youre doing it right, the swarf
is fine like flour. You dont want to be plowing the
If the cutter keeps taking chips out, Bill
will go around again, scraping each of the seven
grooves until it stops pulling chips. Then we remove the cutter bit and add a .001-inch shim. You
could be looking at 350 pulls in and out for the first
cutting, depending on the barrel and how the cutter
You keep going until the groove gets .006 or
.007 (inch) deep, Hoover said while he watched
Sedgley add a shim. That could take 5,000 passes
until the job is done. The barrel we did earlier today had 1,600 passes. It was an easy barrel to do.
The barrels rifled by Bill Hoover and Charley Sedgley are spoken for before they are ever
clamped in the rifling machine, before the cut-

ter ever scrapes its first chip. All are destined for
inclusion in a unique and distinctive art form, the
American longrifle. Each will be inlet into a rough
slab of maple or walnut by hand with painstaking
precision that replicates that of an 18th-century
master craftsman.
At least one will find its way to the back wall
of Gunmakers Hall, an integral part of the coveted raffle rifle used to raise funds to further the
NMLRAs mission of preserving Americas rich
muzzleloading heritage. And as Charley Sedgley
stated, each will be rifled with the care of a gunsmith out in a country settlement, one groove at a
Give the black powder shooting sports a try, be
safe and may God bless you.n


June 4-5Spring Shoot Rendezvous: Lansing
Muzzleloading Gun Club: 517-393-2772
June 10-123rd Annual Memorial Shoot: Sauk Trail
Long Rifles; Tecumseh: 517-879-3096
June 11Youth Day: Grand Valley Cap N Ballers:
June 11-19NMLRA National Championships:
Friendship, IN: 812-667-5131
June 12Woods Walk; Clinton River Muzzle Loaders;
Detroit Sportsman Congress; 586-731-6088
June 17-19Howard City June Rendezvous:
Howard City: 616-887-9716
June 17-19Bridgeport Family Fun Rendezvous:
Bridgeport: 989-746-0723
June 18Sporting Clays (Modern Shotgun):
Grand Valley Cap N Ballers: 616-836-5760
June 25-26Shoot Time Manistee: Manistee:
June 2635th Annual Fun Shoot: Linden:
June 24-Jul 1Old Northwest Rendezvous; Grand
Valley Cap N Ballers; 517-852-0939


he is trying to count and feel the cutter scrape the

metal at the same time. Hes feeling for consistency
of cut.
While Hoover pulled the guide rod, Charley
Sedgley continued with the history lesson for the
bystanders gathered around the rifling machine. At
the time of the American War of Independence a
gunsmith out in a country settlement would own a
rifling machine. If he didnt have a barrel, he would
take a piece of steel, called a barrel skelp, and
forge a barrel.
Using a swage block, the gunsmith and his
helper started in the middle of the skelp. While
the helper held the skelp, the smith hammered the
red-hot steel into a depression in the swage block.
The edges folded around a mandrel, which kept the
barrel from collapsing. When the edges started to
touch, they heated the steel again, added flux and
forge-welded that area, about 3/4-inch at a time.
When they reached the end, they turned the skelp
around and welded the other half.
All rifling machines, no matter how refined or
crude, have a mechanical means for rotating the
rifling rod and cutter as it passes through the bore.
The barrel is clamped in the machine and never
moves. The machine Hoover and Sedgley used
has a groove in the guide rod. A roller rides in the
groove, which turns the cutter as it passes through
the bore. Hoover stopped with the guide rod pulled
all the way out, which placed the cutter at the barrels breech.
Look at the groove at this end, Hoover said
pointing to the groove that spiraled around the
guide rod. See how fast it turns? Now look at the
other end. See how slow it turns? So at the breech
the rifling twist is one turn in 68 inches, but at
the muzzle the twist is one turn in 34 inches. As
the patched ball travels down the barrel, the rifling
increases the spin on the ball. This is called a gain
or progressive twist.
When the charge goes off it upsets the ball
into the rifling. As the ball travels down the barrel,
the change of pitch increases the pressure behind
the ball. The barrel always has a grip on the ball,
spinning it faster, Hoover said.
People say the rifle cracks, Sedgley said.



By Gary Parsons and Keith Kavajecz

The struggle is
real, but the
solution is easy

ike you, we have our struggles. One of those

struggles is eating too much ice cream when we
are on the road. The cool treat seems to bring us
good luck at tournaments and were afraid to jinx
ourselves to save a few calories.
We also used to struggle with anchoring and
boat control while fishing. This was before we were introduced to the Power-Pole Shallow Water Anchor. If you
have seen our boats the past couple seasons, you have
noticed they sport these tall apparatuses on the transom
opposite the kicker motor.
They have been very common on bass boats for
years, and are now being mounted on walleye boats on a
regular basis. They are also easy to use. With the push of
a button, the device scissors out and down, and drives a
fiberglass rod into the bottom.
For presentations like slip-bobbers, pitching jigs to
shallow shoreline breaks, or tossing crankbaits along
weed edges, the Power-Pole works great!
We all know the challenges of a traditional anchor. It
is often difficult to park your boat on the spot. The boat
may swing because of the rope, and the anchor may drag
on a windy day.

The Power-Pole and Drift Paddle gives so much versatility and control to walleye
anglers. The paddle can be easily lifted out of the way with the touch of a button
by using the key-fob remote control that we wear around our neck when fishing.
It can also be physically demanding if you have to
pull up and throw out the anchor multiple times as you
change spots.
The Power-Pole makes it easy to anchor, move, and
re-anchor when working a specific area. There is no commotion from tossing out a traditional anchor or running a
trolling motor in shallow water.
Once we get deeper than eight feet, instead of using
the Power-Pole, we use the anchor mode on our MotorGuide Xi5 bow mount trolling motor to hold us in place.
There are many walleye presentations that rely on the
angler being able to put the boat over the right spot at the
right speed in order to get bites.
To accomplish ideal boat control, walleye anglers
have many tools at their disposal, but one boat control
device we have come to rely on a great deal is the PowerPole Drift Paddle. It attaches to the spike on the unit

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and gives you a boat control tool that can be used in a

number of ways to keep you on fish.
There are a couple key scenarios where the Drift
Paddle would be used and we think youll see how this
unique accessory can become an integral part of your
walleye fishing.
In the first scenario you are trolling open water in
early summer using spinners. The wind is up to about
15 to 20 mph, and as you troll with the wind, it becomes
difficult to maintain a good slow speed for the spinners
because the wind is pushing you so much. With the Drift
Paddle attached to the Power-Pole, you simply deploy it
into the water creating drag that helps slow down your
trolling speed.
You can even control the amount of drag it creates
by how far down into the water you lower the paddle.
Deploy it only half way and it slows you down a little;

Commercial fish harvest steady

deploy it all the way down into the water
and we have actually been able to slow
the boat down as much as a mile to a
mile and quarter when trolling with our
big engines.
Another advantage of using the Drift
Paddle in this scenario is that with the
paddle down, it dramatically decreases
the surge effect the waves have on
the boat as you troll. Thats a big deal,
especially when trolling spinners, as the
surges can affect how the spinners are
running, and in dingy water can make it
difficult for the fish to track down your
By eliminating or at least lessening the surging, the spinners run truer
and therefore are more effective. Not to
mention it just makes for a more comfortable ride for the angler.
In the second scenario you have
found a school of walleyes scattered
along the break off a large shallow
main-lake flat and determined that a
controlled drift approach would be the
best bet for approaching and boating a
few of these fish.
One of the great features of the Drift
Paddle is that it has seven quick-change
positions that cover a full 180 degrees,
allowing you to set the paddle at the
angle you need to help the boat drift on
the path you want it to.
Controlling the boats path from the
bow mount trolling motor, when you
need to move the in or out on the break,

the Drift Paddle easily cuts through

the water making positioning so much
easier than having to drag a drift sock as
we used in the past.
Drifting with the paddle off the back
and our bow mount trolling motor up
front, we have ultimate control of the
Another advantage to the Drift
Paddle over the drift sock, in both
scenarios, is when a fish is hooked and
being brought to the boat. The paddle
can be easily lifted out of the way with
the touch of a button by using the keyfob remote control that we wear around
our neck when fishing.
The Drift Paddle is very tough. Its
made of a space age UV stable polymer
that flexes with the spike for increased
stability, features stainless steel and
bronze hardware for durability and
silicon rubber bumpers for quiet
Could you do the same thing with
a drift sock? Sure you could, but with a
lot more work and much less versatility.
Not to mention, any of you that have
used drift socks know the mess they can
make when you bring them in the boat,
getting everything wet.
The Power-Pole and Drift Paddle
gives so much versatility and control to
walleye anglers. We believe that adding one to your boat is one of the best
things you can do to ensure your success at getting your Next Bite.n

The MDNR recently released data from

its 2015 state-licensed commercial fishing
season. Combined, the state-licensed commercial fishery caught nearly 3,401,000
pounds of fish with an estimated wholesale
dockside value of more than $5.4 million
prior to processing, marketing and retail
While the states total harvest in pounds
Lake whitefish are a critical species to the
was nearly identical to 2014, the fisherys commercial fishing industry. MDNR photo
estimated gross dockside value was down
nearly 7 percent. The decrease in the fisherys value is almost exclusively attributed to a 12.5-percent decline in the wholesale price of lake whitefish.
Lake whitefish is by far the most important commercial fish species in the
Great Lakes in terms of both harvest and value, so annual statistics can move
quite a bit based on it, said Tom Goniea, DNR commercial fisheries biologist.
The price of whitefish had doubled from 2010 to 2014, so its not surprising
that there was a slight reduction last year. Regardless, the price per pound still
remained incredibly lucrative in 2015 from a historical perspective.
Lake whitefish accounted for more than 66 percent of the state-licensed
harvest by pounds and 88 percent of the gross value in 2015.
Participation in the fishery in 2015 remained constant from the previous
year. Of the 50 state licenses issued, 32 were actively fished by 22 separate
businesses. Twelve of these businesses fished in Lake Huron, five in Lake
Michigan, three in Lake Superior and two in Lake Erie. Together, these businesses added an estimated $25 million to the states economy and approximately 300 fishing and fishing-related jobs.
A full breakdown of the harvest and dockside value of the 2015 statelicensed commercial fishery, including details for each individual lake, is
available online. Visit and then click on Managing
Michigans Fisheries and scroll down to the Commercial Fish Management &
General Information section. This section also provides an in-depth description of Michigans commercial fishery, photos of the fishers in action, maps
of the Great Lakes with recent commercial fishing activity, as well as links to
recipes and locations where Michigan fish can be purchased.


Guns, Ammunition,
Reloading Supplies
Trade Ins Welcome

Guns Galore
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Fenton, MI48430

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Its the feeling of becoming a hunter, easing as silently as possible...By Dave Mull

Kayak bug bites hard

The bug has bitten and
bitten hard. As of early
May, Ive logged 10 trips on
the water in a plastic boat,
while the nice aluminum
MirroCraft bought last year
is still in its winter wrap...

channel catfish on Lake St. Clair, a

sauger, white bass and largemouth
and smallmouth on Kentucky Lake, a
northern pike on the Niagara River at
Lewiston, New York, several fall-run
chinook on Michigans Betsie Riverthe list goes on.
One reason I am so fond of
kayak fishing these days is that a lot
of publications and websites want
kayak content, which means I can sell
them stories and my fishing insanity
becomes tax-deductible. It helps that
fishing from a kayak is so relaxing,
es, plastic kayaks have
while also being good, low-impact
become the favorite way
to fish, whether trolling on
What is the best thing about kayak
Lake Michigan for coho
salmon or probing inland
I think its the feeling of becoming
waters for bass to catch,
easing as silently as possible
photograph and release to compete in
to cast, getting close to
kayak tournaments. In the past few
all kinds of wildlife that would have
years Ive been in a pedal-powered
been long gone had I been running an
Hobie and caught rainbow trout at
night, coho salmon at the mouth of the outboard motor. Plus, when you hook
a decent fish, such as the 31-inch pike
Galien River and a limit of bluegills
I caught last month on Corey Lake
and crappie at a secret lake acceswhile casting mini-jigs for bass, its
sible only by paddling about two
truly a question of who has who. A
miles upstream. Plus a big, 27-inch

The author, with a nice bass...believes neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of
night stays these kayak nutcases from trying to catch fish from plastic boats.

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fish like that can tow you around, and

that in itself is a pretty cool experience.
Kayak fishing is just plain fun.
Approaching the start of my seventh
decade on the planet (in other words,
I turn 60 later this year) the exercise

is supposed to be good for me. Plus,

kayaks are relatively cheap to buy
and easy to maintain and if the wind
is blowing up waves too big to mess
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Hobie kayak (which is foot-powered)

taking pictures of the competitors. I
couldnt believe how most of them
were in tight groups, showing each
other what lure they were using and
what was catching fish.
Not exactly cutthroat, these kayak
tournament anglers.
If youre into kayak fishing and
would like to compete in tournaments, Michigan has a few circuits
dedicated to human-powered craft.
The one I plan to do is the new
Michigan Kayak Series, run by Tom
Mullins and Corbin Kench. These
fellows have knocked themselves out
getting prizes and promoting their six
tournaments. The tournaments cost
$40 to enter, and pay back 100 percent of entry fees, with a huge payout
planned for the championship on Burt
Lake. Separate MKS fundraisers support St. Judes Childrens Research
Hospital and the Heroes On the Water
organization, which gets veterans
on the water in kayaks. You can get
the dates and locations of this circuit
either on the Michigan Kayak Series Facebook page or their website:
Other groups with great, informative websites that have a local
bent are Michigan Kayak Fishing
( and
Kayak Fish the Great Lakes (
I have a buddy, a fellow I consider pretty wise about a lot of things
and he says he thinks kayaks are a
trend, like racquetball was. In this
case I dont think he is so wise. For
one, I cant talk him into fishing out
of a kayak. Thats not just unwise,
thats just dumbIm pretty sure
hed enjoy it, and recognize kayaks as
a mode of fishing thats here to stay.
For me, I still love having the aluminum, 17 -foot MirroCraft with its
75-hp Evinrude tiller motor for family outings and bigger water trolling,
and I still eagerly accept invitations
to troll on the Great Lakes. But kayak
fishing is where my heart is. Its a real
kick and continues to be more and
more fun.n

The MDNR announced the online availability of the application to nominate forest land for enrollment in the state's Forest Legacy Program enrollment. The program protects private forest lands from conversion to nonforest
Completed applications, and all required documentation, must be
postmarked and submitted to the Forest Legacy Program by Friday, June 17,
2016. The application, a map and other information are available on the DNR
Michigans Forest Legacy Program uses federal and matching funds to
purchase fee ownership or development rights and conservation easements
(legally binding agreements transferring a negotiated set of property rights
from one party to another) on environmentally important forests within
designated geographic areas, known as Forest Legacy Areas. This can be
accomplished either by bringing the land into public ownership or without
removing the property from private ownership.
Sustainable forest management is as vital to the integrity of private forest
land as it is to public land, said Kerry Wieber, DNR forest land administrator. The Forest Legacy Program provides an opportunity for private forest
landowners to ensure their forest land continues to provide critical wildlife
habitat and recreational opportunities, and is managed as a working forest in
It is important to note that all easements and interests in land acquired
by the Forest Legacy Program last forever, and must contain agreements and
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requires that the land be open to the public for nonmotorized access at a
minimum. Additionally, landowners are required to prepare a management
plan for their property.
Participation in Forest Legacy is limited to private forest landowners. The
federal government may fund up to 75 percent of program costs, with at least
25 percent coming from private, state or local sources. In addition to gains
associated with the sale or donation of property rights, many landowners also
may benefit from reduced taxes associated with limits placed on land use.
For more information about the Forest Legacy Program, visit

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Another interesting thing is that

so far, the numbers of good guys in
this sport far outdistances the number of jerks. Its hard to describe the
kayak fishing demographic because it
truly crosses a wide range of ages and
socio-economic groups. Take kayak
catch-photo-release tournaments, for
example. Ive competed in these the
last few years and contestants range
from kids whose parents drive them
and their kayak to the lake, to old
farts such as myself, with all ages and
both genders in between.
In these, contestants pay their
entry fees, get an identifier and go
fishing for a designated time period.
As each person catches the target
species (most are bass tournaments,
but some include panfish, pike and
other types of fish), then he or she
lays it on a Hawg Trough, the official
measuring ruler, takes its picture with
the identifier clearly in the frame and
releases the fish. (The identifier is to
show you caught the fish on tournament day.) The person with the most
combined inches for a predetermined
number of fish wins. Its fun whether
or not youre a competitive angler.
What? Fun if Im not a competitive angler? Please explain.
In a nutshell, so far, the kayak
anglers Ive met and competed
against are cut from a different cloth
than any other tournament anglers
ever encountered. When I helped Gull
Lake Marine, in Richland, Michigan,
put together their first catch-photorelease tournament, the hours were 8
to 2, and having competed in a wide
range of walleye, bass and salmon
tournaments, I expected all the contestants to be in the water well before
8, ready to pedal or paddle to their
first spot. Well, at 8, I yelled START
FISHING! Of the 24 kayaks entered,
only half were in the water; the other
12 guys were still at the launch ramp,
taking boats off of car-top racks, tying on lures and chatting with each
Several guys were still there at
8:30. As the tournament got underway, I pedaled around in my own

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Double Barrel Shotguns Firing Three Times Or More? By Lee Arten

Gun Chat: Getting guns right

everal Journalists Guides to Firearms

Identification have been posted on the
Internet. In one every photo, including those of a water gun, a Walther PPK
pocket pistol, and a 60s era sedan (possibly a Dodge Dart) are identified as AK47s.
Another chart labels most everything, including the
water pistol and sedan, as AR15s. In one Ive seen
an AR15 is labeled an AK.
When I worked as a reporter, the style book
used at one paper contained firearms errors. The
organization that published the style book also sent
out a story with the sentence, Hunters dont use
handguns. That fall day the paper where I worked
carried a story with a picture of a local hunter, his
.44 Magnum revolver, and the buck he killed with
that handgun. When it comes to guns in print it
often seems things have gotten worse, instead of
There have always been guns on TV, and in the
movies, that were too modern for the time when
the show, or film was set. Winchester 92s doubled
for Henry rifles in many Western, for example.
Trapdoor Springfields were also made to look like
flintlocks in movies often too.
Double barrel shotguns that fired three (or
more) times without reloading, or six-shooters that
shot 10 or 12 times were also unfortunately common. Some of that has changed, but there are still a

lot of things that could be improved.

For once, Id like to see a well-stocked gun
shop portrayed as just a successful business. In
many TV shows and films, full pistol cases, and
long-gun racks in a store, are the cue for ominous
music and the appearance of the gundealervillain.
Ive been in a lot of gun stores but never met a
gundealervillain. (I have heard of a few.) I guess
Ill have to listen harder for the spooky music from
now on, instead of talking guns, ammo, and the
latest local match, like I usually do with dealers I
Some TV crime shows appear to have seen
these ID charts and not gotten the joke. Some,
shows misidentify firearms routinely. One I
watched interviewed a cop who had been in the
shootout that was the climax of the program. Hed
just finished stating that a criminal had opened
up on him and his partner with an UZI submachine gun. The scene that followed showed the
actor playing the criminal firing an M16.
Ive fired both a UZI and an M16 and theyre
quite different. The UZI is much shorter and fires
the 9mm Luger round, not a .223. It doesnt have a
carrying handle above the action, as the M16 (and
many older AR15s) did, either.
I drove several 60s era sedans back in the day
and none of them bore any resemblance to an
AK47. AKs have a reputation for reliability. The


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old sedans generally did not.

On another show, the guns used in the crimes
re-enacted are wrong so often it almost seems
deliberate. Ive seen guns change from Ruger .22
caliber target pistols to 1911 types in successive
scenes. Revolvers have changed from single-actions to double-actions as scenes changed, as well.
One of the reasons this bothers me is that, in
addition to writing the column, I also write fiction.
Since I am a shooter, and a hunter, guns appear
in a lot of my stories. I take pains to get calibers,
actions, and other things about guns right. Ive
owned guns for years and done a lot of shooting,
hunting, and match shooting. But, I do still look
things up on occasion. When I do, I use reference
books, manufacturers websites and, once, an old
copy of The Encyclopedia Britannica. The elderly
edition had a detailed report on the 1903 Springfield rifle that was helpful. It also explained what
the term point blank range really means.
Its rarely taken me more than an hour to nail
down a point of gun history, or design. It would
take more time for someone with little, or no
experience with guns, but an afternoon of study
should clear up a lot of problems like those Ive
complained about. Why are so few people in the
industry willing to do a bit of research before putting guns on screen?n

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Boat Smart...By Captain Fred Davis

Distracted boaters a hazard

istracted drivers using cell phones while

driving have been the focus nationwide of
many headline news articles for years. Numerous statistics have been quoted revealing
distraction as a cause of fatal crashes.
Just as driving while under the Influence (DWI) cases on the road have led to stricter
DWI penalties, there are growing concerns and a call
for tougher laws to control distracted boaters who
text and talk on cell phones while underway on the
nations waterways. Many serious accidents, involving loss of lives, have been documented listing cell
phone use as the cause.
The call for legislation and tighter controls has
been taken up by the National Transportation Safety
Board (NTSB). They state in recent years increasing
evidence pointed toward rapid growth in the use of
wireless electronic devices that are creating hazards
for drivers, pilots and train engineers. In a letter to
the Coast Guard, they said similar distractions could
be dangerous on the water.
Former NTSB Chairwoman Debbie Herman was
quoted stating, The use of wireless devices while
operating vehicles in any mode of transportation
poses an unacceptable distraction. Lives are being unnecessarily put at risk and lost. The agency is
requesting that the Coast Guard tighten restrictions
on cell phone use by its officers. It also would like

the Coast Guard to work with the NTSB and issue a

broad safety advisory to the entire maritime industry
warning of the dangers of using cell phones for calling or texting while aboard an underway vessel.
In response to discussions with the NTSB, the
Coast Guard has prohibited cell phone use by operators of its boats and restricted their use by other
According to a Coast Guard statistic, out of 4,730
reported boating accidents in a recent year 1,084 equaling 23%, involved either operator inattention
or improper lookout. Although a broad category, it
is by far the largest contributor to boating accidents.
Recreational Boating Statistics report listed operator
inattention as the leading cause of accidents on the
Before the massive increase in cell phone use
and it really is only the past ten years, most boaters
were happy to go on a cruise to get away from their
phones. It would be sad to think the only solution to
the association of phone use to boater distraction is
tougher legislation.
Why not appeal to peoples common sense? Suggest they voluntarily leave the phones home or turn
them off while underway.
A friend sent me an article from a Bay County
press release that related details of two boats running into each other. An 18 foot boat with three

A very distracted boater hit this sign! Author photo

men aboard was stopped in the shipping Channel
while preparing their fishing equipment. A 17 foot
boat traveling at a speed estimated at 20 to 25 mph
crashed into it and one man was knocked overboard.
He was rescued and fortunately uninjured. The
driver of the 17-foot boat said, I just wasnt paying
Good example of distracted boating wonder
what he was doing?

Capt. Fred Davis is a retired charter captain
and nationally published author of boating articles.
His columns appear monthly in Woods-N-Water and
are published online www.captainfredsboattips.comn


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Great fishing funBy George Rowe

ass anglers dont agree on

much but most of them
would probably concede that
catching bass on top-water
lures is about as much fun as
you can have, fishing. On
occasion, you can catch more fish on
top-water lures than on anything else
and those occasions are to be relished.
Lets start with plugs. Top-water
plugs come into their own in June,
according to my records. It is my
good fortune to live on a small private
lake with a good bass population and,
based on a couple of years when I
counted, I usually catch around 800
a summer. The most productive lure
in June is a floater and they come in
many shapes and colors. My personal

favorite is a jointed Rapala in silver

and black. This goodie is cast out
over deep weedy cover or next to the
lily pads and allowed to just sit there
for a few seconds. It is twitched,
shook or quivered then and allowed to
rest again. After several repetitions,
it is retrieved slowly. Most of the hits
come as the plug is twitched and the
hits are almost always explosive.
It appears that the bass swim
up to the plug, examine it for a few
seconds and then, when it moves,
they bang it. When the fish are really
aggressive, they will also hit the plug
on the retrieve and that is also exciting. There are other plugs with more
noise or action on the retrieve and that
certainly adds to the fun. Those plugs

This nice bass still wears the authors favorite top-water plug.

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with a big wiggle or propellers seem

particularly effective in June. Poppers
are a special breed of surface plugs,
with those dished faces making very
satisfactory blurbs when given that
little twitch. The popping plugs seem
to be most effective early and late in
the day. Year after year, the top-water
plugs seem to produce the largest bass
of the season. While other lures will
sometimes produce more hits and
more fish, the big surface plugs almost
always deliver the largest fish.
Fly rod lures are among the most
effective of top-water presentations.
Big poppers or deer hair bugs start
producing well as soon as the seasons
opens, late in May, and they stay on
top of the fish-producing list until
July, when the fish leave the shallows

you will confirm that you can cover

more water with a buggy-whip than
with any other method of presenting
a lure. Most of the hits, remember,
will come as the lure is worked on
the surface, not on the retrieve. The
retrieve, therefore, is largely wasted
effort and a consumer of time. With
a fly rod, there is no retrieve, as such
you just raise the rod, lifting the
lure to the back cast and shooting it
forward to land in a different spot for
a little exploratory new action.
Spinner-baits are classified as surface lures, at least in my book, since
you can see them as they are retrieved
(if you retrieve them fast) and the
strike is also visible. That special
version known as the buzz-bait also
fits those criteria. While spinner-baits
can be used in deep-water fishing in
the warmer months of the summer,
they seem most effective during the
shoulder seasons, early and late in the
summer, when the fish are mostly in

the shallows.
In June and July, working a
spinner-bait through a shallow bed of
rushes or reeds can set off some really
great strikes. Many times, you can
see the fish coming in from the side,
swimming at top speed to intercept
the spinner-bait. This technique
seems particularly effective on smallmouth bass. Spinner-baits are also
very effective in fishing over rather
heavy cover. If you find a weed bed
that is growing in deep water with
just a foot or two of water on top of
it, you can work that very effectively
with a spinner-bait. The bass will
come up out of that weedy cover and
just slam that whirling lure.
Top-water fishing is usually best
early and late in the day, by midsummer. If the day is cloudy, however, or there is a little drizzle in the
air, top-water can be effective all day
long. Even in August, when you just
know that deep-running lures will
catch more fish than surface lures, it
usually pays to try the top for at least
a few casts. If you are using a deeprunning plug, try popping it at the
surface before you pull it under for
a retrieve. If you get a hit, you have
a sure sign that you should switch to

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surface lures for a bit.

The great pay-off in surface fishing for bass is, of course, that visible
strike. Takes that you only feel are
okay, but tame by comparison. There
is nothing quite like seeing AND feeling that big largemouth engulf your
lure. That is what makes bass fishing
so popular across this great land and
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Early in the summer, fly rod poppers will take lots of nice bass, like this largemouth.


and head for the depths. Until then,

working a popper in the shallows and
next to any kind of cover or structure
will be very effective.
There is a period early in June
when the dragonflies and damselflies
are hatching from larval cases deposited on reeds and lily pads. You can
do some sight-fishing then, cruising
around and watching for signs of
feeding bass. If you see one take a
struggling dragonfly and cast your
popper to that spot, you are almost
guaranteed an instant and spectacular
On occasion, bass and big bluegills will gang up on a shallow flat
downwind of a reed bed, feeding
actively on hatching dragonflies and/
or damselflies. If you can find this
situation on your fishing waters, a fly
rod will produce fish after fish as long
as they are rising to the struggling
flies or until your arm gets tired.
If you fish much with a fly rod,


Most roadside tourist attractions existed during the year of the Model-A Ford era...

Roadside zoos - tourist attractions;

Featuring bears, lions, elk, albino deer

s a youngster I was familiar

with what we now term,
roadside zoos. They were
tourist attractions that afforded city folk a chance to
view wild animals at close
range. My uncle, Harry Bier, from
Wausau, Wisconsin, kept two caged
black bears adjacent to his gas station.
When a crowd of onlookers would
assemble, he would wrestle the bears.
The animals got a bottle of pop for
their efforts while Uncle Harry passed
the hat around to collect his fee for
affording the wildlife show. It was
great fun to go to Uncle Harrys to see
them thar bears as the locals termed
Many such roadside zoos were
located throughout Michigan during
the l930s- 40s. One I personally remember was near New Haven where
a caged bear could be seen behind a
local drinking establishment. Another that comes to mind, was a black
bear kept near Glennie that we often
stopped and visited when traveling
north. This black bear lived in a wellcleaned cage for years. Furthermore,
friends mentioned that a pair of bears
existed near Pinconning; another was
seen at Cadillac; while reports also
reported caged bears presented to the
public at Howell and Corunna. I am
positive many more roadside zoos
existed throughout the state.
Further research turned
up a pair of famous movie
lions named Jerry and Lady
that occupied a large cage in
Bridgman, Michigan. They
could be seen for years at a
business called Navajo Post.
I located a postcard on an
Internet site for Southwestern
Michigan Postcard Collectors that showed a
great picture of the
big cats. The postcard
was dated 1919.
And of course, deeryards proved
popular with visitors being able to
purchase food to feed the confined
animals. One that came up during
research was near Coloma and called
Deer Acres. A man who called
himself Spikehorn had an all-white
(possibly albinos) viewing area.
I am positive that there were many
more such tourist attractions from the
1920s through the 1960s. In August
of 1966 the U.S. Federal Animal
Welfare Act was passed by Congress
which protected wildlife put on exhi-

At times Spikehorn simply did things with his bears that proved to be unsafe and often times these incidents were not taken well
by the people who might have been involved, as in this postcard, showing kids with bear cubs. Old postcard photos courtesy of
Vera Thomas, Owosso.
bition from inhumane conditions and
practices. Presently we still have wild
animals contained where people can
view them, but basically, the old tourist traps no longer exist, for
permits and conditions for
displaying wild animals must
be complied with. Usually
both state and federal permits
must be obtained or fines
would be levied and/or the
animals confiscated.
But the main story to
relate involves a free spirit
of a man who washed
infrequently, wore
worn out buckskins,
and kept a number
of bears and other wild critters at a
roadside tourist attraction near Harrison in Lower Michigan. He was a
prime example of why regulations
were forthcoming, although he was
never mean or cruel to his animals. At
times he simply did things with them
that proved to be unsafe practices and
often times these incidents were not
taken well by the people who might
have been involved. Signs out front
of his bear den facility read, Only
bear den in the world where visitors
can shake a bears paw. This prac-


By Betty Sodders


tice often resulted in a bear clawing or

biting a person foolish enough to venture into one of the bear dens. One
incident involved a huge 700 pound
sow having been given a half a jelly
roll so the man could have his picture
taken with the large bear; only to have
the bruin attack once he walked away
with the other half of the jelly roll.
A newspaper article from the early
l940s, read as follows:
Spikehorn Meyer Visits Lansing,
Bears and All
Lansing: Old Spike Horn Meyer,
looking like a Santa Clause in a
fringed leather hunting suit, strolled
into the Legislature Wednesday with
five bears.
Old Spike came in leading a
mama bear tied to a brand new clothes
line bought especially for the occasion. Four cubs, born this winter and
scarcely furry yet, capered beside
them. The cubs tumbled about on
Secretary Fred Chasess desk in the
Senate until girl committee clerks
began picking them up and carrying
them around.
In the House, Spikehorn led mama
bear up to the speakers rostrum,
where she shook hands with Speaker
Nugent and smelled the electric voting

Spike said he came out of the
woods to tell his old crony, Senator
Ben Carpenter of Harrison, that spring
is here early this year and it is time to
adjourn the Legislature.
Hibernating in this law making
den all winter, Ben probably doesnt
know the grass is up and trout fishing
is about to start, Spike said.
Maybe it was a coincidence, but
the house passed the biennial conservation bill, 95 two 0 a few minutes
after the bears left. It provides a new
20-day holiday in all hunting just
before the November deer season.
Spikehorns given name was John
E. Meyer, born July 5, 1870, died
September 19, 1959. He loved all
Gods creatures. He took the name of
Spikehorn in 1931.
Spikehorn dressed to fit his surroundings from buckskin pants, rarely
washed, to a well-worn fringed jacket.
Frequent bathing was simply not on
his agenda. His hair was white, long,
dirty and unkempt. I was told the man
often smelled bad. He loved telling
stories to the delight of young and old
alike filled with fanciful characters
doing impossible things.
Two of his bears were named Nip

Fish stocking creates

numerous opportunities

This postcard shows one of the bears taking a chocolate mint candy right out of
Spikehorns mouth.
and Tuck and spent days chained to a
large hollow log where tourists could
easily see them. Rain found the bears
crawling inside the log so as not to
get wet during rainstorms.
Most roadside tourist attractions
existed during the year of the ModelA Ford era that held no electronic toys...when big excitement was
stopping at Spikehorns to see wild
animals privy to Michigan; maybe pet
a bear or play with a raccoon. Spikehorn called his venture Spikehorns
Bear Den and Wildlife Park. It was
visited by thousands of people per
year. In 1929 he relocated to a road
frontage spot of M-27 and put in a
gas pump and sold tourist trap items
such as souvenirs and penny postcards. The latter were mainly of him
doing something with his bears and of
bears playing with children who were
visiting his establishment.
Once again his two bears could
be seen chained out near the road to
grab the attention of oncoming carloads of visitors. As with my Uncle
Harrys bears, all bears love pop and
candy. Postcards exist showing one
of the bears taking a chocolate mint
candy right out of the old-timers
mouth. He also constructed a chute
that would send down a bottle of pop
where the first bear to grab it enjoyed
drinking it. This proved to be a big
hit with the audience.
His menagerie grew to include
20 albino deer and on average, some

14 black bears along with raccoons,

squirrels and maybe a fox or a badger.
And a new crop of bear cubs was
added each spring. From time to
time, older bears were sold off to
other bear den tourist traps in Michigan, Ohio or Indiana.
Competition started up down the
road from Spikehorns venture in
1944, when a man named Foss started
a similar tourist attraction that held
exotic animals such as an alligator
and several monkeys. Fosss Bear
Ranch also held a bear or two, a
couple coyotes and perhaps a fox.
Today, roadside zoos are required
to obtain special DNR and Federal
U.S. Fish & Wildlife permits along
with frequent checks to make sure
that roadside zoos are following
proper procedure according to law.
Examples of places to visit that have
wildlife viewing possibilities are:
Oswalds Bear Ranch out of Pine
Stump Junction, north of Newberry in
the Upper Peninsula; the Deer Ranch
located on US-2 west of St. Ignace;
Garlyn Zoological Park at Naubinway; and the New Beginning Ranch
situated in the Tip of the Mitt region
of the lower peninsula that holds a
herd of buffalo for tourist viewing. I
am told, they also have an elk herd.
So weve come a long way since
the l920s and can be reassured that
stopgaps are in place to protect the
wild creatures and make their existence as tolerable as possible.n

Fish stocking creates numerous fishing opportunities

throughout Michigan
The Michigan Department of
Natural Resources is in the
middle of its new fish stocking season, and this spring
people will see DNR fish
stocking trucks releasing their
prized recreational cargo
at hundreds of lakes and
streams throughout the state.
Fish stocking is a valuDNR employees are traveling all across Michiable tool used by fisheries
gan right now to stock millions of fish into lakes,
managers to restore, enhance rivers and streams.
and create new fishing opportunities in Michigans inland lakes, streams and the Great Lakes. The
DNRs Fisheries Division accomplishes this task by rearing fish at its six fish
production facilities located throughout the state, cooperatively managing
up to 50 rearing ponds and 13 imprinting net pen locations, and maintaining a fleet of 18 specialized fish stocking vehicles.
Over the course of a typical year the DNR will stock roughly 20 million
to 25 million fish weighing nearly 400 tons, including eight species of trout
and salmon and four coolwater species such as walleye and muskellunge.
Beginning in mid-March and ending in early June, the DNR fish stocking
trucks will travel well over 100,000 miles to stock between 700 and 1,100
Michigan anglers have access to four Great lakes, 3,000 miles of Great
Lakes shoreline, more than 11,000 inland lakes and tens of thousands of
miles of rivers and streams. That puts residents and visitors no more than
10 minutes away from great angling opportunities and world-class fisheries.
Visit the DNRs fish stocking website at for
information on local fish stocking locations.

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WO O D S - N - WAT E R N E W S R E S E RV E S T H E R I G H T T O R E F U S E A N Y O R D E R I F I T I S C O N S I D E R E D T O B E I N P O O R TA S T E O R U N E T H I C A L .

Break lessons down to small chunks-dont overload the child with information...By Buck Mallory

Teaching kids to fish

The sad tragedy is a lot of kids
who would like to fish never
get a chance. Even worse
situations arise when a kid wants
to learn how to fish and an adult
gets overbearing about doing
everything perfectly...

Teaching a kid how to fish takes time and patience, but success brings lots of rewards. That first fish is an exciting event for most
kids. If he doesnt want to touch his catch, best not force the issuejust demonstrate proper handling techniques so the student
will be able to take the fish off when hes ready to try.

from shore and let it sit with the kid

watching. In an ideal world, your
pond or the water around the pier has
fairly clear water where you and your
student can watch panfish come and
investigate the bait. Explain to the kid
whats happening, encouraging him
to watch the bobber as the fish approaches the bait. Note how the bobber wiggles a little bit when the fish
samples the bait and maybe plummets
when the fish grabs and runs.
When the fish has the bait, set the
hooklightly so the fish doesnt come
flying out of the water then help
the kid get his hands on the reel. Let
your pupil crank the fish to the bank
and explain how he should be careful not to let the fish flop too much
on the ground. Show how to hold the
fish so the spines dont poke you and
then take it off the hook. See if the kid
wants to hold the fish and put it back
in the water. If not, dont make a big
deal about thatjust touching such a
foreign creature can be a huge, scary
thing for kids. Just see if the kid wants
to touch the side of the fish with his
finger. If not, again, just put the fish
back in the water yourself, noting how
the fish swims away.
Now rebait (offering to let your
little buddy do it, which he likely
wont) and now its the youngsters

turn to try and cast. Show him how to

push the button of the reel and hold
it so the line doesnt come out. Now
is time for one of the most important
lessons. Show the kid how to watch
the bobber andespeciallythe
hook as it goes around behind him
in preparing to cast. Emphasize that
when he starts fishing in different
places, people might walk behind him,
and he needs to know where that hook
is. Explain that when he starts fishing
from a boat, other people will be very
close and can get hurt if he doesnt
pay attention. Dont make it scary;
just be matter-of-fact.
Now its time for the actual cast.
Explain that when the rod comes in
front of him, thats the time to let go
of the button but still hold on to the
Kids usually catch on to this right
awaymaybe because they have so
much opportunity to push buttons on a
video game controller?
The first few casts probably wont
be perfectunless youve got a young
Kevin VanDam-like fishing genius
on your hands. Thats OK. Teaching
kids anything, including fishing, is all
about positive reinforcement. When
the bobber and bait lands in the water,
thats reason for congratulations and
praise. Once the youngster gets fairly

adept at catching panfish from shore,

its time to introduce him or her to
fishing from the boatand, depending
on the kids skill level at casting and
reelingpursuing bass.
Of course you want to take all the
safety precautions such as having the
child wear an appropriate life jacket.
Vest types are more comfortable than
the classic orange life preservers, but
make sure your student wears whatever you have. Put one on yourself if
you want to be a good example. Go
over some safety concerns about how
to avoid falling in and about appropriate boat behavior.
On that first boat lesson, its best if
you dont pick up your own rod right
away, but just help the kid cast and retrieve so youre there and ready when
a tangle occurs or the lure gets stuck
in some weedsor a fish bites.
This is the time to keep the lure
selection simple. A Senko wackyrigged with a circle hook (basically
a straight, 4- or 5-inch worm hooked
in the middle to wiggle on both ends)
is hard to beat. The 4-incher will get
more bites. I recommend rigging it
with a circle hook, a 1/0 size, which
will almost always hook a fish in the
corner of its mouth without the kid
needing to set it.n


was really lucky when growing

up to have my dad and my uncle
take me fishing and, in some
ways, extra fortunate that they
were bass anglers, so I was able
to learn how to catch bigger game
soon after I learned the fundamentals.
I got started on the small stuff,
bluegills, sunfish and what we used
to call mud bass (actually warmouth
bass) and I think thats the best way
to get kids involved. Ideally, find a
pond or a pier thats full of them and
bait with wax worms, which are easy
to use and usually available anywhere
bait and tackle is sold. In Michigan,
most gas stations and mom-and-pop
grocery stores have them.
The idea of taking a kid fishing
for the first time is to really listen to
the kid and not force him or her to
do anything they really dont want to
doits a big deal for a kid to impale a wriggly worm or even a fairly
docile wax worm on a hook. If the kid
doesnt want to try and do it himself,
do it for him, occasionally asking him,
after he catches a fish or a fish steals
the bait from his hook, if he wants to
give it a try. If not, just move on and
help him catch another fish. Eventually hell want to do it himself.
Break fishing lessons down to
small chunksdont overload the kid
with information. Casting a bobber
with a split shot and a hook is a good
start.(Please note, throughout this
were using he, his and him to save
words, but its every bit as important
to teach girls to fish, too.)
Get a small rod that kids will find
easy to handle, the pre-packaged combosthe Barbie Rod is one, available
at Wal-Mart for about $12. Or, better,
get a decent Zebco 33 pushbutton
combo for about $50. That will last
longer and is actually a good adult
option for skipping piers. Older kids
with bigger hands usually dont have
trouble with open-faced spinning reels
and rods, and since thats what even
little kids soon graduate to, you can
start with those when teaching schoolage youngsters.
When teaching casting, start with
a demonstration. Cast out a baited
hook under a bobber just a short ways


Prime Time
Great Lakes

By Mike Gnatkowski

une is when
walleye fishing really
heats up on the Great Lakes.
Water conditions and clarity
are improving after the spring
run-off. Warming water jumpstarts a
walleyes metabolism and walleyes
are fully recovered from the spawn by
June and ready to go on the feed. Trophy eyes can be somewhat difficult
to catch in June, but its the prefect
time to fill the freezer with tasty, flaky
white fillets. And every once in a
while, a trophy eye will find its way
into the cooler that will raise some
Here are some cant miss ports for
early summer Great Lakes walleyes.

you use your head.

You can find great
fishing not far from
shore, especially after an extended
period of calm weather. Light winds
allow sediment to settle, water temperatures to stabilize and waters to
clear making for prime walleye fishing conditions.
Twenty-five years ago, weight
forward spinners were all the rage
in Lake Erie. Then, captains started
experimenting with pulling crankbaits. The crankbaits allowed anglers
to cover more water, present their
lures to more fish and save money on
expensive live bait. Now, at least in
the summertime, Lake Erie is a spoon
bite. Small, light spoons catch limits
of walleyes and fewer of the trash fish
that can be so annoying.
Walleye fishing might not be
Once the water temperatures get
quite as easy on Lake Erie in 2015
to 60 degrees, its strictly a spoon
according to fisheries research biolobite, said Capt. Ron Levitan Jr. of R
gist Mike Thomas. Were likely to
& D charters (248-684-4237; passinsee lower abundance, said Thomas. The walleyes are actively
2015 appeared to be another befeeding then and presenting your lures
low average year in terms of natural
to the maximum number of fish is key.
reproduction, but it was better than
Spoons are the easiest way of doing
most recent years. Of course, those
that. Theyre easy to fish, youll catch
fish will not show up in the catch for
fewer trash fish than you would if you
another three years. But there really
use live bait and you can fish faster.
isnt a strong year class waiting in
Levitan relies heavily on Wolverthe wings that Lake Erie anglers can
ine Tackles (
count on this year.
Junior and regular sized Silver Streak
Thomas said that environmental
spoons. Ill use the smaller Junior
factors are very important in deterspoons a lot, but there are times when
mining how successful the Lake Erie Ill resort to the regular sized spoons
walleye spawn is. Water temperatures if were seeing larger baitfish, said
and spring storms in April greatly af- Levitan. My three favorite colors are
fect fry survival. Some years walleye probably Pink Panties, Pink Squirrel
spawned in area rivers are the only
and Hot Lobster. There are plenty of
fish contributing to a particular year
other colors that will work, too. UV
class. Walleye numbers in Lake Erie
colors are good because they change
are totally dependent on natural repro- if the light changes, theres more wave
duction. It appears that there hasnt
action or theres changes in water
been a good hatch in several years to
buoy angling prospects. Still, even
Levitan said that he presents the
during bad times biologists estimate
spoons using a combination of jet divthat there between 23 and 25 million
ers and disk divers. With the Western
adult walleyes in Lake Erie. Odds are Basin of Lake Erie being relatively
pretty good you can catch a few of
shallow, its easy to cover the entire
them. I expect fishing to be similar to water column without the use of
the last few years in Michigan wadownriggers. Walleyes can be found
ters, offered Thomas.
from top to bottom in the spring so
The great thing about fishing the
its important to cover all the depths.
Michigan waters of Lake Erie for
Some anglers have resorted to using 2
walleyes is you dont need a huge
to 4 colors of lead core line in addiboat. A 17 to 19foot boat is totion to the disk divers and jet planers
Although many anglers have gone to using spoons for walleyes, theres still a place for tally adequate for catching plenty of
with spoons. Levitan said that plenty
crawler harnesses for Great Lakes walleyes. Mike Gnatkowski photos
walleyes most days on Lake Erie if
of fish can be found in the 12 to 20


Lake Erie


foot depths, but the bigger fish tend

to be found in deeper water. Find
bait fish and youll find fish, advised
the veteran captain.
Walleyes in Lake Erie have a
wider variety of forage to feed on
than in Saginaw Bay. Gizzard shad
are very prevalent in Lake Erie along
with alewives, spot-tailed shiners,
emerald shiners, gobies and perch.
Because of that, spoon size and color
differs greatly between Lake Erie and
Saginaw Bay.
I cant give away a silverbacked spoon on Lake Erie, but thats
about all they use on Saginaw Bay,
claimed Warrior Spoon manufacturer
Mike Steffes ( On
Lake Erie, its all gold- and copperbacked spoons. I dont know if its
because of the water clarity or the
forage. I do know they use more of
the regular-sized spoons on Lake
Erie. The silver-backed Little Warrior spoon is definitely more popular
on Saginaw Bay. That could have
something to do with the forage size
and color or the average size of the
Early summer anglers will find
good access to the Michigan waters
of Lake Erie at Bolles Harbor, Otter
Creek, Luna Pier and Sterling State

Lake St. Clair

Mention Lake St. Clair and you

automatically think of smallmouth
bass. But before the smallmouth bass
explosion, Lake St. Clair was a firstclass walleye lake. Want to know a
secret? It still is. You have to fish a
little differently because of the weed
growth and water clarity now, but
employ specific tactics and you can
snake plenty of fat walleyes from the
Prior to zebra mussels, Lake St.
Clair was not as clear and there were
fewer weeds, said veteran angler
Denny Lantzy. A lot of guys quit
after the weeds got real bad, but you
can still catch some good fish if you
know what youre doing.
Lantzy said he still catches plenty
of walleye pulling crawler harnesses.
You just have to be careful to keep
them out of the weeds. I generally
look for 15 to 16 feet of water where
there are weeds on the bottom and try
to stay about halfway down, maybe
seven or 8 feet, and stay on top of the
weeds. Thats the key. The walleyes
are in those weeds and when it comes
time to feed theyll rise up and position right in the tops of those weeds.
Lantzy said hell pull harnesses
behind in- line boards and weight the
harnesses with a single split shot if
hes trying to get them down 5 to 10
feet. Any deeper than that and hell
use a 1/2 ounce in-line sinker.
I generally use a No. 4 Colorado blade, offered Lantzy. There

are a lot of perch and bluegill in the

lake so I like natural-colored blades.
Chartreuse and holographic perch are
good colors. On bright days, I may
use more metallic colors like gold or
silver or copper. I tie the harnesses
with two #2 live bait hooks. You can
count on kissing three or four of your
harnesses good bye every day. There
are so many muskies in the lake you
cant help it. Lantzy said hell occasionally throw a classic Hot-N-Tot
out behind the boat with good success, but its usually not long before
a muskie ends up taking it. Harnesses
are much cheaper to use.
Lantzy runs the harnesses behind
in-line boards to allow them to travel
just above the weeds. Key to running the harnesses behind boards is
to loosen the drag to let the board out
slowly so the crawler harness doesnt
sink and get caught in the weeds.
Lantzy said he hears of people using
Gulp! and other artificial baits, but he
doesnt have the success with those
that he does with a fat, juicy night
The best walleye fishing is
along the Canadian side because
theres more natural shoreline there,
claimed Lantzy, Mid-June through
July youll find walleye off the
Dumping Grounds and Stony Point
in about 17 feet of water. Later in the
summer, it can be good off the shipping channel.
Lantzy said that over the course
of a day youll catch muskie, sheepshead, jumbo perch and smallmouths
on the crawler harnesses, too. There
are enough 2- to 6-pound walleyes in
the weeds though to keep things very

Saginaw Bay

Saginaw Bay is considered

Michigans hottest Great Lakes walleye fishery and theres no reason that
shouldnt continue. Walleye populations in Saginaw Bay are booming,
said fisheries biologist Mike Thomas.
Walleye numbers in Saginaw Bay
are near historic levels. All of the
fish are naturally reproduced and the
majority of those fish are spawned in
area rivers. Recent estimates place
the Saginaw Bay walleye population at somewhere between 2 and 4
million adults. Those numbers dont
compare to Lake Erie, but were
looking at a much more confined
area. Saginaw Bay has always had
the potential of producing an outstanding walleye fishery, but in the
past an abundant alewife population
that has held walleye numbers down.
Alewives were a major predator of
walleye fry. Now that alewives have
disappeared, walleye numbers are
booming and reproduction in the rivers has allowed walleye numbers to
expand exponentially.
Capt. Jeff Godi of The Michigan

Experience Charters (; 989-686-7345) agreed

that fishing on Saginaw Bay was
incredible last year. Two years ago
was my best year ever, exclaimed
Godi. The Bay stayed cool all summer long and we had good fishing
until mid August. We started right off
in mid May fishing spoons and never
took them off. June and July were
fantastic. We caught a limit every day
and customers are very happy.
Godi said he relies on a combination of short 2- to 4-color lead core
lines, jet divers and size O Dipsey
Divers on Saginaw Bay. Lately,
the lead cores have been my go-to
lines, he said. There are days when
I dont have to use anything but the
lead cores. Attached to the lead core
are spoons. Ive done really well
with Yeck Spoons (fishyecklures.
com, 231-843-7862) in both the Y11
and Y44, said Godi. Silver-backed
spoons seem to work best, but there
are times when gold or copper will
work. My three best colors are
Greasy Chicken Wing, California
Dreaming and one my daughter created, Haleys Toenails. Ill use Michigan Stingers and Dreamweavers at
times, too. The best colors seem to be
pink and purple.
Godi said that mayfly numbers
have gone bonkers on Saginaw Bay.
Its a sign that the Bays water quality
and clarity are improving. The mayflies have been coming on strong.
The walleyes are up high then.
People tend to think that the fishing
slows then, but the 2-color cores and
smaller spoons excel then when the
fish are up high.
Linwood Beach Marina &
Campground (LinwoodBeachMarina.
com, 989-697-4415) offers excellent
campground and launch facilities to
sample Saginaw Bays exceptional
walleye action.

Thunder Bay

Thunder Bay and Alpena have

long been known for their trout and

salmon fishing. The area has gained
national notoriety in recent years for
its untapped smallmouth fishery.
But a lot of Thunder Bays newfound claim to fame is the result of
the outstanding walleye fishing to be
found in the area. The Bay benefits
from a healthy population of resident
walleyes and migratory fish that head
north from Saginaw Bay when it begins to warm. The great fishing starts
in June and continues right through
the summer.
Since the alewives have disappeared from Thunder Bay, anglers
had figured out how to catch walleyes during the daylight hours.
Catching walleyes requires pulling
jet divers, Dipsey Divers and short
lengths of lead core with crawler
harnesses, body baits and spoons
attached. Whats changed in recent
years is that the walleyes are deeper.
Were fishing more in 30 to 50
feet of water now because the water
is so clear, said veteran charter skipper Ed Rutherford (989-675-2681; When
youre fishing water that deep and
youre not pulling just crawler harnesses, youre likely to catch a variety of fish. Theres lots of steelhead
out there, Atlantics, lake trout, you
name it.
Body baits, like Reef Runners,
Rattling Rogues, Rebels, Bomber and
others tempt not only walleyes, but
salmonids, too. The same can be said
of spoons. All of them will tempt the
Bays 2- to 8-pound walleyes.
Rutherford advised heading towards reefs and structure off Northport, Rockport, Thunder Bay Island
and Scare Crow Island in search of
walleyes. On-shore, southeast winds
that stir the shallows up, colors up
the water and pushes warm water on
shore produce ideal conditions and
savvy anglers make it appoint to be
on the water when that happens.n


The author caught this walleye in

Inner Saginaw Bay in August.


By Ed Spinazzola



ast month I wrote on the value

of Roundup Ready (RR)sugar
beets for wildlife, a topic with
so much date it deserves a
book. My experience and
research of over 15 years
shows that nothing beats sugar beets
for winter carry over nutrition and
deer attraction in late November and
the December deer hunting seasons,
absolutely nothing. So, if we now add
corn to our RR sugar beets and an
understanding of spraying Roundup
we can create a deer utopia or the
ultimate corn based kill plots.
To start; add 8-pounds of 85 day
Roundup Ready corn seed to the
blend of 35 pounds of RR soybean
seeds and 25,000 RR sugar beet seeds
and broadcast for a one acre kill plot
or several small kill plots. The corn
is not only forage deer cannot resist
it is also cover. The corn is cover but
due to the low seeding rate of corn the
deer are visible to you easily at bow
range and also at 100 yards. You just
need some height for your blind. You
need to plant acres of this Ultimate
corn based kill plot formula for success.
Depending on deer density in
your area deer will target the corn
early and never stop and leave you
an open food plot if its not large
enough. You may need to plant up to
four acres in high density deer areas.
I highly suggest that these ultimate
corn based kill plots be adjacent
to good deer cover or corn seeded
normally. This normal rate seeded
corn field should be adjoining woods,
dense cover, high switch grass, evergreens etc. Your kill food plots can be
small in size, (1/4 acre) yet the size
can be an acre or more. The key is
security for deer and that is addressed
for the corn is the answer. Actually
the larger the ultimate corn based kill
plot the better. Due to the addition of
soybeans, your seeding date should be
mid-May in mid-Michigan. Now lets
finish the job.
Add to this creation of maximum
deer attraction the following: In early
August broadcast one to a maximum
of two pounds of a brassica blend

The ultimate corn based kill plot. Ed Spinazzola photo

per acre by hand. In early September
broadcast any grain or a blend of oats,
rye grain and winter wheat at no more
than 30 pounds total per acre.
You have many options by
using seeding equipment. Example,
seed rows of corn within the soys
and beets aimed at your blind where
you can see the deer clearly within
these rows at more than 200 yards.
For more information see our web
site . I have
produced a DVD covering the above
Ultimate corn based Kill Plots plus
several other options and in detail.
In mid-September think of doing
the sweetening thing; Around mid
September, (or two weeks prior to
site use) you broadcast 150 pounds
of urea, (46-0-0) per acre. Caution;
we are giving that forage a buzz and
the leaves must be dry when the urea
is applied or you might experience
some foliage burn. That urea application should be effective for close to a
month. Remember it is broadcasted
in September and the cooler weather
slows the denitrification of urea,
(evaporation of urea to nitrogen gas),
You have now fed the root system of
your forage. For longer lasting
effectiveness you can buy slow
release urea. There are several types
with different degrees of nitrogen
release. For a long period of 60 days
of nitrogen availability there is one
type called XCU, which is 43 percent
urea with sulfur and coated with a
If you use the slow release you
can apply it at 200 pounds per acre.
You will probably need to order it in
advance if your feed and seed dealer
handles it. If you cannot find any slow
release urea and you want a site to be
effective for an extended period apply
50 pounds of urea per acre one month
after the first application, but do not
apply it later than mid October in the
Midwest. The foliage must be green
and growing when applied for desired

Spraying Round up
This is now an easy chore compared to the delicate task of yesterday
and thanks to the technical expertise
of Monsanto and their sources. It is
very important that you still spray
timely and an accurate amount.
From Monsantos Roundup
Ready Sugar beet Technical Bulletin:
Roundup ready Sugar beet
varieties have in-plant tolerance to
Roundup agricultural herbicides,
enabling growers to apply labeled
Roundup agricultural herbicides from
planting through 30 days prior to
harvest for unsurpassed weed control.
Sugar beet seedlings are extremely
sensitive to weed competition for
light, nutrients and soil moisture.
Research on sugar beet weed
control suggests that sugar beets
need to be kept weed free for the
first eight weeks of growth to protect
yield potential. Therefore, control
weeds when they are small (2-4
inches in height) to minimize weed
competition and preserve yield
The following spraying recommendations are very important. You
will spray more than once. Early season weed control is critical. Always
add spray grade ammonium sulfate
(AMS) with Roundup herbicide to
maximize product performance.
Your first spraying should take
place around three weeks after planting. Your first spraying should be
before weeds exceed two inches in
height or when the sugar beet plant
reaches the two-leaf stage, whichever
comes first. If you use a four-gallon
backpack sprayer add one cup of
sprayable ammonium sulfate, AMS
to a half full tank of water. Add six
ounces of Roundup, (3/4 cup) then,
top off with water. You are set to
spray 1/6 of an acre. Know the acreage of the plot being sprayed and
spray accordingly. You should have
spray material left after spraying this
size of a plot. The above is not dif-

ficult. Once you get the hang of it, it

becomes fun.
If you have a quad with a spray
tank and spray boom mounted, it
becomes easier. For a 14 gallon tank
that is set up normally to do an acre,
fill with water to full, add one quart
of AMS, then add 32 ounces one
quart of Roundup then fill with water.
Know what speed, (usually 5-6 miles
an hour, a fast walk) you need to
travel to spray one acre.
For larger setups, (fifty gallon or
more spray tanks) add 17 pounds of
AMS per 100 gallons of spray solution. Know your spray system and
what it takes to spray an acre of land,
then add that 32 ounces of Roundup
per acre.
The second spraying and all
subsequent sprayings use the same
amount of AMS and Roundup per
acre, with a maximum of 96 ounces,
(or four sprayings) of Roundup being
used per acre. The second spraying
take place before the weeds reach
four inches in height, (approximately
three weeks after the first). Weeds
should never grow higher than the
beets. You are now close to six weeks
after the planting date and may be
close to full canopy cover, which
suppresses weeds in a big way. Full
leaf canopy cover is your goal then,
you should not need to spray any
If the third spraying or more
is needed, follow the rule above,
Spraying takes place before the
weeds grow to four inches of height.
Think 3-4 weeks after the second
spraying. The above spraying instructions are in detail for a reason. There
are there to insure your success. The
last m
Keep the fun in hunting!
Ed Spinazzola, Associate, Tony
LaPratts Ultimate Land Management
for more info call 586-784-8090 and
or see our web site or www.tonysulm.comn

DNR patrol boat dedicated to fallen conservation

officer at annual police memorial service
boating while under the influence
patrols, search and rescue operations
and assisting other agencies with assorted special details. Its home port is
The boat is very versatile and
all-weather capable, which allows
us to stay on the water for longer
periods of time, said Thayer. The
features of this boat are a tremendous
asset when conducting search and
rescue missions as well as other various missions in cold weather.

The boat was purchased in 2010

through federal Port Security Grant
Program funding. It was manufactured by SAFE Boats International
in the state of Washington. Founded
in 1997, SAFE Boats International
designs and builds vessels that help
keep military, law enforcement and
fire professionals safe as they carry
out their duties, protect citizens and
work to save lives.
The DNR owns and operates
seven SAFE boats stationed at vari-

ous Great Lakes ports throughout the

Michigan conservation officers are fully commissioned state
peace officers who provide natural
resources protection, ensure recreational safety and protect citizens by
providing general law enforcement
duties and lifesaving operations in
the communities they serve. Learn
more about Michigan conservation officers at


Takes you to a new concept of deer attraction.
Deer will freely enter your kill plot during daylight due
to the security and endless variety of forage deer prefer


Send Check or Money Order

Made Out to:

Edward Spinazzola
815 Sleeth Rd.
Commerce, MI 48382

New DVD ~ $25 includes shipping




Phone #

Tony Lapratt and associate Chris Pierson
with new associate Ed Spinazzola



Send Check or Money Order
Made Out to:

Book $25
DVD $20

Check the Following:

then mail to:

Deer Attraction
815 Sleeth Rd.
Commerce, MI 48382

Book @ $25 each

DVD @ $20 each


Phone #




# Bags



Michigan's Ultimate Blend



Wildlife Cover and

Forage Blend (6lbs)


Shipping and handling

Lower Peninsula Michigan

$11.00 first bag $7.00

each additional bag

Shipping and handling

Upper Peninsula and the
rest of the Continental US

$12.00 first bag $8.00

each additional bag


Ed Spinazzola 24150 31 Mile Road, Ray Twp, MI 48096





Michigan Brassica Blend



The Brassica Blend provides both summer feed and winter forage. The Ultimate Blend is
an excellent mix that includes both annual and perennials. The Wildlife Cover and Forage Blend
is designed to keep deer on your property by providing them a bedding area and food in close
proximity. Go to for a full list of ingredients and detailed planting instructions.

Phone #




s part of the Muskegon County

Police Memorial Service
Wednesday, May 18, a Department of Natural Resources
SAFE (Secure All-around Flotation
Equipped) boat will be dedicated
to fallen Game, Fish and Forestry
Deputy Warden Julius Salomonson
who died in 1908. Michigan wardens
were counterparts to todays conservation officers.
The memorial service begins at
6:30 p.m. in front of The Protectors
statue at the Muskegon County Hall
of Justice located at 990 Terrace St.
in Muskegon. The public is encouraged to attend.
Deputy Warden Salomonson was
committed to protecting Michigans
natural resources and its citizens,
said Lt. Gerald Thayer of the DNR.
Its a privilege to honor his memory
by dedicating our SAFE boat to a
man who lost his life while serving
this state.
The deputy warden, his brother
Martin Salomonson and Deputy
Sheriff J. C. Hazeltine died Nov. 15,
1908, on White Lake in Muskegon
County while trying to apprehend
violators illegally netting fish.
The two brothers found illegal
nets Nov. 14, 1908, near the mouth of
a channel leading to Lake Michigan
and secured the assistance of Sheriff
Deputy Hazeltine. Around midnight,
the three men left their horses and
lantern along the edge of White Lake.
In a small flat-bottom boat, they set
out to apprehend the violators.
The men never returned. A search
party was formed the next day to
scour the area. Their bodies were
found 600 feet from shore in approximately 7 feet of water. The county
coroners inquisition stated the men
had drowned in an unknown and
mysterious manner. Deputy Warden
Salomonson left behind a wife and
young daughter.
Questions arose as to whether the
men had met some type of resistance and were overpowered. It was
well known that certain violators
had made serious threats against
officers if they did not cease their
efforts to break up the illegal netting activity and leave them alone.
However, after an investigation by
Deputy State Game Wardens Tom J.
G. Bolt of Moorland and C. K. Hoyt
of Grand Haven and Deputy Sheriff
Dan James, the deaths were declared
accidental drownings. No evidence
of violence against the three men was
ever found.
The 25-foot SAFE boat, owned
and operated by the DNRs Law
Enforcement Division, is used by
Michigan conservation officers for
fishing and marine safety patrols and
checks, commercial fishing checks,
homeland security and border patrols,


Bluegills on the fly

n my book there is no better table

fare than bluegills. Yes they are
small and sometimes difficult
to fillet, but as with most small
panfish there is great reward that
comes with harvesting bluegills
for the table. June is probably the
best month to stock up on some fillets. Here are a few tips if you are
looking for a fantastic bluegill dinner.
In mid-Michigan, bluegills start to bed in June.
Although the spawn of this
species can vary widely
depending on spring temps,
lake depth and lake water
quality. Ive seen them bedding as early as late-April
and as late as August
on my lake. Spawning
bluegills prefer temperatures from 69
to 70 degrees. Bluegills will return
to the same spawning bed areas year
after year. This makes it very important for anglers to leave a few fish on
the beds each year. Males actually
move up and make the bed initially
with the females staging close by in
deeper water.
Algae blooms are a real spawn
killer in lakes. Ive seen males move

up and start making beds only to

see the dozens of beds abandoned
as green algae drifts in to the beds.
Obviously, boat traffic can really wipe
out a good bedding area as well. We
often mark shoals on our lake with
buoys so unfamiliar boaters wont
run aground and these usually end up
being the most productive bedding
areas on the lake as the traffic moves around these areas
instead of through them.
Spawning bluegills can
be spooked off the beds
easily. It is often more
productive to mark a bed and
come back to it than it is to
drift over the bed then try to
catch the spooked fish.
I usually try to stay at
least 25 to 30 feet away
from the nearest bed making sure my
shadow doesnt stretch over the bed.
My favorite method of fishing these
great little fish is by fly rod. I use
the black sponge spider with white
legs with a 5 to 6 foot tippet. The
male gills will defend their nesting
area with everything they have, and
often will completely destroy one of
these flies in one day of fishing. This
type of fishing not only is extremely

By Mark Sak



6 NEW Chapters Plus New Material Added To Most Chapters
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Where to Aim
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____ Great Michigan Deer Tales - Book 6 ($16.50)
____ Walking with Whitetails DVD ($24.00)
____ Deer Hunting - 4th Edition ($35.00)
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____ Great Michigan Deer Tales - Book 4 ($16.50)
____ Great Michigan Deer Tales - Book 3 ($16.50)
____ Great Michigan Deer Tales - Book 2 ($16.50)
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Make checks payable to: SMITH PUBLICATIONS

814 Clark St. Marquette, MI 49855

A slip bobber and tungsten jig also produce high catches of bedding gills is. The author prefers the jig with some hair tied on to make it more life-like.
productive but also helps improve fly is much harder to make this cut if one
rod skills for bigger quarry in the fall. side of the meat is already cut away).
These gills fight so hard they will
I then make the cut in back of the gill
pull a walleye boat several feet in any plate and proceed to cut to the tail
right through the rib cage. Dont cut
The other method that also
the side totally off the fish although.
produces high catches of bedding
Stop just short of the tail. If you want
gills is a slip bobber and tungsten
a skinless, boneless fillet, simply flip
jig. For bedding bluegills I prefer the the side over and start the cut on the
jig has some hair tied on to make it
bottom right above the skin. Slide the
more life-like. I utilize a wax worm
knife gently through the skin all the
instead of crawler as they are much
way to the back and through the end
cleaner in the boat. Try to set the
and the fillet will separate. Lay the
slip bobber so the jig will just touch
fillet down on the cutting board and
the bed. The male will either devour cut around the rib cage and you have
it or try to move it out of the nest.
a perfect boneless bluegill fillet. It
This is undoubtedly the best time to
usually takes me about half an hour
take a youngster fishing. If you want to fillet 25 gills. I soak them in cold
your child or grandchild to become a water to get all of the blood out and
lifelong angler, leave your pole in the firm up the fillet.
rod locker and just help them cast to
A recipe I use most of the time
the beds. They will undoubtedly be
involves soaking the fillet in egg and
rolling in Progresso Italian bread
Once you have your limit of gills, crumbs with added salt and pepper.
(25 per person in Michigan), its time Fry them in cooking oil and try to
to fillet the fish. Start with the biggest not overcook them. Gills cook very
gills first as it is much easier and the
quickly and 3 to 4 minutes should
skill level will increase by the time
suffice if the cooking oil is hot
you get to the smaller fish towards the enough when you begin. I hope your
end of the batch.
mouth is watering as much as mine is
I use the thinnest, sharpest knife I right now.
can find. It needs to be very sharp as a
I hope you have a great summer
dull blade will tear the meat. I make on the water. If you are anywhere
the initial cut on both sides of the top near my lake this summer, youll
of the back all the way to the tail. (It
know where to find me.n


Trout, Bass, Pike, Walleyes, Catfish, Pan Fish,

Minnows for Fast Fish Growth, Hybrid Bluegills.
(Fish available during the months of
April, May, October and November)
Fish may be picked up in small
quantities or we deliver by truck.

We also sell pond supplies...

pond dyes, chemicals,
aeration and fish pellets!

Imlay City Fish Farms, Inc.

Fish Consultants

1442 N. Summers Rd., Imlay City, Michigan 48444

Phone: (810) 724-2185

he MDNR and Fishmas

Charters have partnered to
offer free walleye fishing
classes at several state parks
this summer, a great opportunity to reel in some fishing
tips for one of the states most popular
The two-hour class is part of the
DNRs Recreation 101 program and
will include discussion of the seasonal
habits of the elusive walleye, proven
techniques for finding fish and a
question-and-answer session.
Classes will run from 6 to 8 p.m. at the
following parks:
Sterling State Park (Monroe
County): Friday, May 20
Algonac State Park (St. Clair
County): Friday, May 27
Silver Lake State Park (Oceana
County): Sunday, June 12
Ludington State Park (Mason
County): Friday, July 22
Burt Lake State Park (Cheboygan
County): Friday, Sept. 2
Captain Ken Clark of Fishmas
Charters in Whitehall will teach the
classes. Clark has served as a charter
boat captain for more than 20 years
and is a self-professed walleye snob.
Walleye enthusiasts of all skill levels
(beginner through veteran anglers)
are invited to take part in these free
There will be a drawing at the end
of the program for two lucky participants to go out with Clark for an hour
of fishing directly after the program.
Winners must have a valid fishing
license to participate in the fishing
excursion. Participants 17 and younger
must be accompanied by a parent or
guardian. Picnic tables will be provided, but participants may want to bring
lawn chairs.
Classes may be canceled in the
event of severe weather. For more
information or to RSVP, please contact
the location of the class you wish to
attend. For more information about
Fishmas Charters, please visit www.
The Rec 202 program, an exten-

Walleye fishing can be a fun and rewarding

way to enjoy Michigans great outdoors with
family or friends. This season, the DNR offers
several free opportunities for beginning and
experienced anglers to learn more about fishing for this often elusive species. MDNR photo
sion of the popular Recreation 101
program, is a series of more advanced
classes taught by DNR staff or expert
volunteers from organizations, guide
services, outdoor outfitters and other
recreation resources. These volunteers
offer their time and knowledge at no
charge to the DNR or class participants. The Recreation 101 program,
which began with several state parks
in 2011, is now offered statewide in
Michigan state parks and many community recreation agencies through a
collaboration with the Michigan Recreation and Park Association. Rec 101
offers nearly every recreational pursuit,
from archery to ziplining. Learn more
Inside Michigans Great Outdoors
subscribers are always the first to know
about reservation opportunities, state
park events and other outdoor happenings. Visit to
subscribe now.
The classes are free to attend, but
a Recreation Passport is required for
vehicle entry into state parks. Learn
more about how the Recreation Passport gains you access to Michigan state
parks and more at

Bait regulations changed to protect against

fish disease and spread of invasive species
The Michigan NRC at its April 14 meeting approved fishing regulations
that affect bait harvest and use. These regulations went into immediate effect.
Fisheries Order 245 establishes regulations that protect the aquatic resources of the state while minimizing the spread of pathogens, such as viral
hemorrhagic septicemia (VHS) and aquatic invasive species, to uninfected
waters. Special regulations listed in the order place restrictions on the minnow trade and anglers and where baitfish may be used.
In response to the discovery of VHS in Michigan waters of the Great Lakes,
the DNR implemented in 2007 a comprehensive set of regulations. These
regulations aimed at restricting the spread of VHS into disease-free waters
affected recreational anglers, wholesale fish dealers, state-licensed commercial fishermen, private aquaculturists and retail bait outlets. Overall, these
groups as well as the public have been accepting of the regulations and
understand the importance of protecting the states fisheries.
All the changes are highlighted below and also are reflected in the online
version of the 2016-2017 Michigan Fishing Guide, available at Michigan.
gov/fishingguide. These regulation changes are part of Fisheries Order 245.
Fish Disease Regulations:
All personally collected bait is required to be used on the same water
in which it was collected.
The states VHS-positive, surveillance and free management zones have
been removed.
The list of susceptible fish species has been updated and expanded.
The restriction on the use of roe (fish eggs) in the exclusion zones has
been removed, as fish eggs have not been documented moving VHS.
All commercially harvested bait in November and December is required to be tested and certified as disease-free, as this time period represents 80 percent of the total annual minnow harvest in Michigan.
A spring disease test is required for bait harvested in five zones of the
Huron-Erie Corridor by the commercial bait industry to continue to monitor VHS.
For more information on viral hemorrhagic septicemia, visit Michigan.


Free walleye fishing

classes at state parks


Controlled drifting
and trolling catfish

he cool early morning silence

was broken by the sound of a
rod bouncing in the rod holder. The first cat of the day
was just a small 15 incher. By
the time that fish was released
a rod buckled over and the tip was under water. After a true dog fight battle
with line being pulled and the fish going in every direction but up, a dandy
12 pound fish was boated.
So often a big cat acts like a
monster bluegill on steroids mixed
in with the determination of a smallmouth bass. They fight, they pull and
then circle the wagon creating some
exciting moments when you still have
a few rods in the water.
I like covering water in
a Huckleberry Finn mode.
Turn the boat sideways and
drift with the current. We
do the same in a lake. Holes
and deep runs hold most of
the fish and the deep slots
near the channel or often the
channel itself is excellent.
Lakes have specific
areas depending on the
season and lakes are
most often overlooked by anglers.
In a river you can slip with the
current much like a steelhead or
walleye angler. Or you can turn the
boat sideways. I prefer sideways. You
cover a lot more water and netting a
hooked fish is much easier. Sideways
allows more rods to be used without
the fear of tangling. The trolling motor is only used to push or pole the
boat away from the shoreline. If you
get to close to the shoreline just burp
the trolling motor so that your rod is
running a few feet from the bank.

On any given drift you will
need to tweak the boat in or outward
a few times. We point the bow in the
direction that we most often need to
go towards on a drift. Many times
when working a weedline or the old
river channel the wind pushes you
in a goofy manner. After one drift
you should have it figured out which
direction that the trolling motor needs
to face. Throwing out a drift sock or
using your main engine as a rudder
will dramatically alter the course and
position of the boat. By all means use
the outboard as a rudder. The difference is huge.
There will be plenty of times especially on a lake or reservoir that the
wind just plain will not accommodate
a drift. Your trolling motor becomes
crucial. I happened to skimp and save
and bought a Minn Kota I Pilot. This
is a deal breaker. With an auto pilot
you can run an exact line, record it
and duplicate it all day long. You can

adjust the speed to match the conditions. An auto pilot trolling motor
will bring you back to the same spot
and when a run is complete, turn the
boat around and do it all over again.
If you do not have an auto pilot
then I would suggest in buying 6-12
marker buoys. Running your outboard
slowly you can trace out the route you
want to fish. Run your trolling motor
to keep you within the markers.
I use floating markers all of the
time. I know, some of you are shaking
your head and saying what is the GPS
for? I mark my way points and such
but when drifting or trolling nothing
is as easy and fast as a marker. Plus
when you have another angler in the boat they can also
spot your markers and assist
in directions or adjusting the
We will mark key features in a river or a lake with
the markers, setting them a
safe distance from where we
want the boat to run. Running over a marker
is not a good idea
and when the day is
complete you can then mark up your
graph with the icons and label them
for the next time out.
Drifting or trolling along a weedbed offers multiple depths to fish. We
run one rod tight to the weedline and
stagger the rest. Sometimes one rod
will run in 8 feet of water while the
outside rod is running in 30 feet of
water. Once a pattern is determined,
duplication is easy.
Rod holders are critical. We run
4-6 rods and each are placed into a
rod holder. I currently use the Driftmaster Rod Holders, exact same holders that I employ when spider trolling
for panfish.
When you are drifting in a river
pay close attention to the location
that a fish hits. Some days they are in
a deep hole or other days they might
use a long run. One you pick up a fish
or two duplication is simple.
On a lake we search out the forage. Many times starting near the
deep side of a weedline is perfect.
Cats are hungry and will be close to
the forage. A sharp break or dropoff into deep water that is close to a
weedline or food shelf is desired.
During the middle of the day we
target the old riverbed. On my favorite inland lake my deepest channel cat
came from 83 feet of water. We were
working the old riverbed starting in
86 feet of water and sliding up to 60
feet. We would run a section a few
times and then move down fifty yards
and repeat it. During the dog days


By Jack Payne


Jim Vanderbie with a nice cat caught drifting between the piers.
of the summer we fish the old river
channels in many of the drowned
river basins.
Drift socks are used on both rivers
and a lake when the speed is to fast
and for guidance. Placing a drift sock
on the tip of the bow or alongside
of the motor will change the angle
of the drift. Slow is the key, most
often someplace between .3 mph and
.7mph. Drift socks will greatly reduce
your speed.
Strikes are fast on a slow moving
bait. Catfish have only a few seconds
to decide if the aroma or scent is enticing. Anchoring the fish thinks about
it, might even mouth the bait. A meal
that is slowly bouncing along the
bottom results in a fast hit or at least
a quick grab. Rarely will you need to
feed line to a moving cat.
Anglers living along any of the
great lakes like I do have it easy. Each
spring starting in April and perhaps
lasting into June we enjoy a large
run up of catfish into the rivers or
drowned river mouth lakes. Catfish of
all sizes run up these waters to spawn.
Muskegon Lake, Holloway Reservoir,
The Grand River, White Lake and the
Kalamazoo River are but just a few of
the good catfish waters in Michigan.
Check the master angler list and you
will find plenty of good waters to fish.
Cut bait can be small bluegill,
pieces of a sucker or sheephead. It
really does not matter. Cut the chunks
into one by two or one by three inch
sizes unless you are after flatheads
or monster channel cats. Then step it
up to a larger chunk or even a very
small but alive bluegill. We soak all
of our cut bait in anise oil but I am
sure other scents would work as well.

Soak and freeze in small plastic bags.

Chicken or beef liver is a great
option and can often be bought or
given to you from your local meat
cutter. We use the same sizes mentioned above. A third option is a
hotdog. Nuke the hotdogs for 30-40
seconds, just long enough to toughen
up the skin. Then cut into 1 or two
inch chunks. Anise soaked microwaved hotdogs produce the most fish,
but not always the largest fish for us.
If you plan ahead a day or two,
then we soak our cut baits or the
hotdogs in anise oil. Mix the anise oil
say three parts water to one part anise
oil. No need to scent the bloody liver,
it works great on its own. We then
place the bait onto the circle hooks.
Circle hooks do a nice job of
hooking the fish in the corner of
the mouth. Most of our fish hook
themselves and are easy to unhook
and release. Remember that you are
catfishing, not walleye. So use large
hooks. Our smallest might be a #1,
most often we end up with a #2/0 or
a 3/0 hook. Two pieces of hot dog or
one large chunk works well on the
larger hooks.
A floating jig head is used when a
dash of collar is needed or when dealing with short grass or moss on the
bottom. We use floating jig heads a
lot when fishing depths of 40-70 feet.
Look for the largest floating jig heads
on the market. Northland Tackle carries some huge floating jig heads.
Drifting or trolling will put more
catfish into the boat. With proper
boat control this is the easiest and
most productive way to land channel
catfish. One outing and you will have
it mastered.n

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lights, TV or even a stove for all the fish youll reel in.

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start, produce fewer emissions and are remarkably
quiet. Plus, theyre covered by our 3-Year Warranty.
Theyre the catch of the day. And thats no fish story.













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Perkins, 8,
took his first
turkey hunting near
Chelsea. His
monster tom
25.5 pounds
with an 11.5
inch beard
and over an
inch long

Mother-Daughter Success: Nicole Denz, 12, of

Macomb Twp. took this rare bearded hen on May 7.
Her mom Kellie took her trophy tom with an 11 inch
beard a few days earlier hunting near East Lansing!

Denz of
this tom
near East
on April
24th. It
had a
10 3/4"
beard and
1 1/2"

Ava Ellis, 9 of Grand Junction took her first spring

gobbler on opening morning in Allegan County!
Brady with
his first
turkey, it
had a 9
beard and
1 spurs
taken in
Kalamazoo Co.
with his

Gage Breining, 6 with his

first turkey taken April 21
in Jackson Co. It had a 10
beard and 1 1/8 spurs.


Ethan Galbraith of Clio

whacked this 38 1/2 inch
pike on Houghton Lake
May 5.


Jason Voss
took this tom
with a 10
beard and
1 spurs
hunting Berrien County
April 19 with
Bryce Rickman (lt), Mike
Anstiss (rt),
and Andy
Podsiad (not

Nick Reed of Kalamazoo caught

this beauty, as 19 incher that put
up a great fight!

Spezia of
took this
24 lb. tom
with a
9.75 beard
hunting St.
Clair Co.
April 20
with his

took his
first turkey

Steven Wilkins, 13 took this

big gobbler April 26 after
seeing it on his trail cam. It
had a 10 1/8 beard.

Art Newby of Waterford took this mature,

heavy rack red stag with a rifle on a recent
trip to New Zealand's South Island. His
guide estimated the stag was 11-12 years
old and weighed over 400 lbs.

What goes around once can come around again!

Michigan Meanders Dj vu
The Saginaw and Tittabawassee
Rivers produce big walleye, but the
Bay itself typically does not. Last
year of the top 100 walleye entered
in the catch and keep division of the
Michigan DNR Master Angler Award
program, only four came from Saginaw Bay. None of the biggest 19 fish
entered in the catch and release division was a Saginaw Bay walleye. True
to form, our catch this morning was
mostly eaters, 15- to 20-inch fish.
But what fun! I felt like a kid again.
However, the better the fishing
grew, the stronger the wind blew.
About the time the waves reached
three feet, I grew nauseous and found
myself hanging over the boat side.
By now, Tony and Leon had
their limit of 16 fish, but we
were a few shy of our 24-fish
goal. In deference to me, Jim
and Ken offered to quit for
the day, but I asked to make
one more run into the waves
and then troll back, hoping to
limit out.
Big mistake! A
sudden four-footer
smacked the Trophy
down hard and I
bounced from the seat onto the floor.
That brought another wave of nausea,
along with some frightening news:
shaking in my legs, tingling in the left
arm, increasing numbness in the hand.
I wondered if I was suffering from a
heart attack or stroke.
Ken turned the boat around to put
the wind to our backs. Then he and
Jim quickly wrapped lines and sped
back to the marina where Tony and
Leon were waiting for us. When I
described my symptoms, Tony, who
had suffered a stroke a few years earlier, said. Youre going to ER. My
friends half-carried me to the car.
I spent that night and all the next
day at McLaren Bay Region Hospital
in Bay City, undergoing a slew of
tests and being closely monitored.
Although the doctors couldnt perform
an MRI (I have a pacemaker), all tests
were negative. Apparently, the pounding waves put my neck out of joint
and I suffered a pinched nerve. Thats
where dj vu comes in. I have had
neck problems ever since being injured as a high school football player
and have gotten sick before while fishing in Great Lakes whitecaps, often
while looking through a camera lens
and not watching the shoreline.
My friends made a very welcome
visit to the hospital that night. The
next day while I was being prodded
and poked, they caught 16 walleye
before monster waves chased them
off. I repaid their favor by fixing dinner Thursday evening. Friday morning proved calm and they were able

By Tom Huggler

While fishing the Saginaw Bay like the author did as a kid, an old football injury came
back to hault him. With two younsters in 4-H, the author is back into pig farming!
to fish most of the day and caught 28
more walleye. Meanwhile, still a little
disoriented, I slowly drove home. Im
writing this two weeks later under the
influence of Aleve. When you have arthritis in your neck as I do, pain relief
sometimes helps, along with isometric
exercises and over-the-counter supplements.
Another example of been there,
done that has nothing to do with
fishing. After a 35-year hiatus, I find
myself raising pigs again. Um, correction, my young children are raising
pigs and I am helping with their 4-H
The first time I was a pig farmer,
Ronald Reagan was a first-term president. I had a lot to learn, such as there
is no money to be made by raising
hogs unless you are involved on an
agribusiness scale; even then, the profit is slimmer than Saran Wrap.

Hogs will eat as much as you provide.

They can and will escape. Youd think
I would know better than to venture
into this swamp again.
Even so, no domestic animal is
more entertaining. Instead of wasting time watching the television,
the kids are out playing and working with Daisy, Bubba and Buck.
They are learning how to manage
the 150-pound porkers, whichif all
goes wellwill each add another 100
pounds of weight over the next couple
of months.
The 4-H program, available in every Michigan county, teaches children
to be responsible and helps them learn
cooperation, teamwork and leadership
skills. They have fun, make friends
and learn basic business principles
like profit and loss.
The tip: never discount the power,
or the probability, of dj vu.n


s it true that history repeats itself?

Yes it does, at least for me. The
only difference between then
and now is the number of years
between events. You cant predict
when things will occur, but be assured they will probably happen again
and most likely at a time and place
you would never expect.
Recently I was invited to fish
Saginaw Bay for walleyes with four
long-time friends, only one of whom
I actually knew. Having grown up
near Flint, the Bay was practically
in my back yard and I spent many
memorable days there fishing for
perch and walleye, hunting for ducks
and geese, and trapping for muskrats.
About 25 years ago I moved
west, between Lansing and
Grand Rapids, and Saginaw
Bay receded in the rear-view
mirror. However, with all
the reports I had been hearing about excellent walleye
fishing there, I immediately
accepted the offer to go back
to my old stomping
My hosts were
veteran anglers, who
used to make annual treks to Ontario
to fly-in fish for walleye but grew
tired of the regulations and cost.
Besides, angling opportunities were
just as good, and possibly better, right
here in Michigan. Three of the friends
live near Saginaw Bay, so why not
fish close to home in their own boats
with their own gear and tackle? We
met in Linwood on a Tuesday in late
April and got to know each other over
restaurant pizza. Because it was too
rough to fish, however, we spent the
afternoon in our rental cottage, playing cards and getting to know each
A shared love of the outdoors
breaks the ice in any hunting or fishing camp. It also helps when participants are about the same age and
because we are all in our seventies,
we had a lot in common. These were
shot-and-a-beer guysmy kind of
people. Next morning we would show
those walleyes whos boss.
I fished with Jim and Ken in Kens
Trophy Bayliner, an excellent boat
for the shallow Bay, which can get
temperamental quickly. The weather
people forecast this mornings gentle
breeze would throw a fit by afternoon. Tony and Leon left before us
in Tonys Skeeter, ran out four or five
miles, and immediately got into fish
in 12 feet of water. Big-lipped Rapala
Husky Jerks in perch color, spread
out from the boat with side-planers,
was the go-to program. Although our
action was slower, we copied their
tactics and began picking up fish, too.


Hot Topics, My Thoughts, My Views...

Time to get back to sensible UP deer regulations

The purpose of deer hunting is to reduce whitetail populations before winter arrives,
reducing or eliminating winter losses and road kills!...By Richard P. Smith

hope its finally time to get back

to sensible deer hunting regulations for the Upper Peninsula.
Now that the UP buck harvest
has declined by at least 300%
since mandatory antler point restrictions were adopted for UP combination deer license holders, it should
be obvious those restrictions are not
working. Those regulations were sold
to the Natural Resources Commission
and the public on the premise that
they would increase the total number
of bucks in the herd and especially
older age bucks.
The opposite has happened. There
are now far fewer bucks of all ages
in the UP deer population and those
regulations are primarily responsible
for forcing hunters to pass up thousands of whitetails that later died
during the winter, damaging valuable
winter habitat before they perished.
Periodic severe winters in the UP
makes it impossible to guarantee that
bucks mandatory APR regulations
force hunters to let go will live long
enough to grow another set of antlers.
Annual estimates of the buck
harvest generated by the DNR
through their deer hunter surveys
paints a clear picture of how poorly
ARPs have worked in the UP. Both
tags on UP combination deer licenses
were restricted starting in 2008. The
estimated buck harvest for all deer

seasons in that region for 2007 was

The estimated buck kill has gone
down steadily since 2008 under
APR regulations. The buck harvest
dropped to 51,769 that year and was
slashed by more than 50% in 2009
to 24,195. The winter of 2008-2009
was a tough one on UP whitetails and
results of 2009 hunting seasons was
a clue of what lie ahead. Many bucks
died that winter, including plenty that
hunters were forced to pass up under
the first year of APR.
Then several mild winters in a
row allowed the buck harvest to rebound somewhat. UP hunters bagged
an estimated 30,587 bucks during
2010, 30,033 in 2011 and 35,966 for
2012. Those numbers show what a
key role winter severity plays in UP
hunting success, not APRs. In fact,
APRs continued reducing hunting
success those three years. Without APRs, UP hunters would have
harvested even more bucks and there
would have been a higher number of
satisfied hunters. Most importantly,
there would have been fewer bucks
to die during the upcoming severe
Those mild winters allowed the
number of UP bucks to increase, but
the winters of 2012-2013 and 20132014 were among the regions worst.
Those winters claimed many of the

Regulations that allow all UP deer hunters

to shoot spikes or better are best suited
for the region. Those rules allow hunters to
shoot more bucks, but it reduces the
number of deer that die during the
winter and that end up as road kills. The
end result can be more deer in the
population instead of fewer. Author photo
bucks regulations prohibited hunters
from shooting and putting the meat
from those animals on their tables.

Trust Fund 40 not celebrated by all!



our May issue of WoodsN-Water News offering

its readers a view point
on the celebrating the
40th year of the Kammer
Trust Fund, sure calls
for response from the conservation
It is a fact that in every controversial decision there are two
sides and yes sometimes silence is
louder? And yes money and political gain -- sure have an influence on
discussion making!
From people that have a conservation ethic, and also respect for areas such as the Pigeon River Country, the other side of the 40 years to
celebrate -- should be examined.
Facts can and will reveal the
change that was created by the
politics and hiccups to achieve
exploiting of the non-renewable re-


My Views...
By Douglas Mummert

and forest managers had been forced

to adhere to the newly constructed
act, which allowed special
interest to now be part of how they
sources that laid under the surface of manage.
this rare piece of state-owned land.
And here it is 40 years later and
Its value to create fresh water alone, yes, more lands have been added to
is so rare it is one of the five won- the Pigeon River Country, I believe
ders of the world.
it now encompasses 110,000 acres
The power of legislative and
but what a change in the original
the desire of political gains, accom- intent of maintaining the original
plished, changing a system, run and character as Mother Nature inmanaged by professionally qualified tended!
biologists -- to a new act called
The influence to exploit now far
the Pigeon River Hydrocarbon Act
exceeds the need to properly manof 1980. It officially stripped those
age and it will be the next generawith high ethics and personally
tions that will be effected and proper
knowledgeable abilities to do what press is necessary if the fresh waters
was right for the resource(then in
of the northern regions are left to be
980) they must adhere to the new
pure. The Flint River and Muskegon
law or act that they had placed in
River are examples of why the other
their hands?
side of the viewpoint must be in
Our respected wildlife, fisheries print!n

Consequently, the venison from those

deer fed growing coyote and wolf
populations. More damage was also
done to critical winter deeryards before those surplus bucks died.
The DNR estimated the UP buck
harvest was down to 28,907 in 2013
and nose-dived to 19,431 during
2014. Final estimates for the 2015
buck harvest are not yet available,
but, according to preliminary deer
check station data, the kill is expected
to be at least 10% lower than 2014,
putting it into the all-time low category for the region. Severe winters have
also occurred when spikes or better
were legal to UP hunters, resulting in
declines in harvest, but the buck kill
has never reached such low levels
under those rules.
Theres no question that UP
hunters would have harvested significantly more bucks between 2008
and 2015 if spikes or better had been
legal to hunters those years like they
were prior to 2008. The 2008 buck
harvest would have exceeded 60,000,
considering the 2007 kill was 57,988,
instead of 51,769, a difference of at
least 10,000. Based on those figures,
its reasonable to assume the buck
harvest would have been an aver-

Sensible UP deer regulations page 72

My Thoughts, My Views, My Opinions...

Michigans fishery is fragile...

I am experiencing my worst steelhead season in 26 the three fish limit too many?

am writing this on the day after

the spring meeting of the Lake
Michigan Fisheries Citizens Advisory Committee. This group
was formed in the 1980s and I
have been a member
since its inception. The
meetings usually start with
the members giving fishing reports. Good reports
were certainly very scarce
Being an avid keeper
of a fishing log I was
able to report that
I was experiencing
my worst steelhead
season in 26 years. My season catch
was one third of my retirement years
average when there was little restraint
on when and how often I could go
fishing. It was also troubling to learn
that we just barely captured enough
female steelhead at the Little Manistee River weir to satisfy our hatchery
needs. And, it was the latest date ever
to reach that goal.
The news on the diminishing
alewife population continues to be
bad, which is especially disconcerting
since the chinook are pelagic feeders
and especially dependent on alewives
for food. It is obvious that the food

chain in Lake Michigan is changing

and will likely be forever changed
because of the proliferation of the
zebra and, especially, quagga mussels. These mussels filter a tremendous amount of plankton
out of the water and,
of course, alewives are
almost totally dependent
on plankton for food. In
my mind these mussels
are the most damaging
invasive species since the
sea lamprey. Maybe
they are much worse
since at least we have
been able to reduce
the lampreys to a tolerable level.
Another invasive species might be
the savior of the Lake Michigan salmonid fishery. The round goby feeds
heavily on the mussels and thus can
be the way to get the nutrients tied
up in the mussels back into the food
chain. Steelhead, brown and lake
trout, Atlantic salmon, and even, to
some extent, coho and whitefish feed
on gobies. Sadly chinook salmon,
the mainstay of the open lake fishery,
rarely eat the bottom oriented gobies.
They are really focused in on feeding
high in the water column.
In Lake Huron steelhead seemed

By Jim Bedford

cant even stand watching the

news anymore, its
almost always doom
and gloom. There are
so many negative evil
things happening in our
world its sickening. When
I look back over the past ten
years, its amazing how much
the media has changed
And to think we
are the lucky ones!
We still live in an area where
certain core values are accepted and
upheld. But if we dont get more vocal, they will start to decay even in
our small neck of the country. Back
in the day, hunting and fishing were
pretty much accepted by everyone.
Hunters were providers, continuing
a deep history of outdoorsmen and
woman well predating the Second
Amendment or the founding of this
great country.

Where are we now?

Death threats from people about
posts on Facebook? Are you kidding?
This sounds like some insane, version
of the Twilight Zone. The
sad thing its true. Hunters
have been getting their lives
and the lives of their families
threatened over posting a
picture of a Brown Bear or
Lion. The kicker is, all these
animals were harvested ethically and legally. I
am not condoning the
outrage over someone
poaching an animal, hunters are the
ultimate conservationists!
We hate illegal hunting more than
anti-hunters do. Do people against
hunting not understand how this
Do they not know who pays for
Do they not understand why most
animal numbers are the healthiest

By Lane Walker

Life in the fast Lane page 73

to have survived the alewife crash

and I had my best steelhead fishing
this last season in Lake Huron tributaries. But it is important to note that
this is in comparison to a very subpar
season on Lake Michigan streams and
rivers. A couple of points made at
the advisory committee meeting were
that fish grow faster eating alewives
compared to gobies and that even
though steelhead are quite omnivorous, they may be more dependent
on pelagic prey like alewives than
originally thought.
One thing is for sure, the Lake
Michigan food chain is undergoing a
major change and it may be time to
take a little pressure off of the fish. If
steelhead become the new chinook,
I think it will be very difficult for
these fish to provide both a quality
big lake fishery and continue to be the
world class river fishery to which we
have become accustomed. We just
cant raise them in the numbers that
we can chinook. Similarly, if lake
trout are to become the main target
in Lake Michigan, I dont think these
slow growing fish will be able to hold
up to the pressure.
As the Lake Michigan fish populations go through this change, I think
it is important that we dont put too
much pressure on any one species. A
move in that direction would be to

keep the three fish limit but allow no

more than two fish of any one species in both Lake Michigan and its
tributaries. DNR fisheries biologists
will be quick to tell us that lowering
a possession limit is not a very good
way reduce harvest unless lots of anglers routinely catch their limit. And
that may be true for river steelhead
anglers but even if big lake anglers as
well do not regularly catch their limit,
I think the social aspect of a reduced
limit is also important. It tells anglers
that the fishery is fragile right now
and that might think about releasing
more of their catch.
As we try to recruit new anglers
and retain beginning anglers it is
also helpful for them to know that
there might be some fish for them to
catch since the pros are releasing
more fish. I know this is true on the
I have talked to a bunch of charter
captains and recreational big lake
anglers and they all were okay with
this new limit. They were already familiar with a reduced lake trout limit
in the past as the lake trout recovered.
While most of my river angling pals
are catch and release steelheaders,
I am sure there might be some that
would not like to be restricted to

Fragile fishery page 73


Huh? Are you Serious?

The social aspect of a reduced limit is important. It tells anglers that the fishery is
fragile right now and they might think about releasing more of their catch. Author photo


Hot Topics, My Thoughts, My Views...Continued

Sensible UP deer regulations...from page 70
age of 10,000 whitetails higher each
of those years, which means current
regulations prevented hunters from
tagging approximately 80,000 bucks.
But far more importantly, 80,000
fewer bucks would have died during the severe winters that occurred
during those years to feed coyotes,
wolves and other scavengers. Instead,
the venison from those bucks would
have gone in freezers and on hunters
dinner tables. On top of that, winter
habitat would not have been degraded
as much during those winters from
trying to carry too many deer.
Most importantly of all, regulations allowing UP hunters to shoot
spikes or better would have resulted
in a higher deer population today
then we currently have. How many

more whitetails would now be present

under a different harvest strategy is
open for debate, but the presence of
more deer, regardless of how many, is
a good thing. Thats why its time for
a change.
Its time to reinstate buck harvest
regulations that were in effect in the
UP before 2008, which is one tag of
combo deer licenses unrestricted. In
other words, bucks with spikes or
better would be legal on that license.
That simple change would make a
world of difference. That change will
enable UP hunters to better manage
the regions deer population, will
result in more filled tags and will help
halt the decline of UP deer hunters.
But how is it possible to better
manage the UP deer herd by hunters

We have a chance to get ahead of Asian Carp...

Make us better stewards of the resource!

Dear Woods-N-Water News:

Jim Dexter, MDNR Fishery Chief says we've been at this for 14 years,
(restore the perch) we started this because we weren't catching perch for
20 years before that. Now I understand Woods-N-Water News readers or
anyone else would get tired of hearing the same old thing, quite frankly
I'm tired of saying it. We have repeatedly asked the MDNR to lower
the perch limit, close during spawn, and make walleyes only one over
23 inches (Like Green Bay) to protect the spawning females. This costs
nothing, makes us better stewards of the resource, but it seems this is just
too hard for the DNR to do!
Native fish have adapted to the new food from out of town (invasive
species) including the Asian carp, coming soon to a water body near you!
The studies have predicted all that's happened and what's happening now.
Restoring native fish populations restores the Natural Bio-tic Resistance
of the ecosystem, or predators. The solution is a healthy native fish population, according to studies invasive species including Asian carp have
no defense against a healthy native fish population, which we don't have,
but we could have!
We have a chance to get ahead of Asian carp and be proactive! I suggest we take it, before the Asian carp set up housekeeping! Asian carp are
a freshwater fish, they can go anywhere in our freshwater ecosystem, just
like our native fish/predators do!
Tom Matych
Twin Lake, MI

Good old fashion common sense bird dog training

for the foot hunter seeking a Companion/Hunter not
a field trialer. Give your dog plenty of field time and
plenty of birds on our licensed preserve with
two of Michigans top professionals.







taking more bucks than they were

under mandatory APR? Wouldnt an
increase in the harvest remove more
deer from the population, resulting in
fewer deer?
Allowing hunters to take bucks
with spikes or better would not result
in higher losses than are already
occurring. Those regulations would
redistribute annual deer losses by
allowing hunters to tag more than
they have been, which would result
in lower winter deer losses and fewer
road killed whitetails. That is the
purpose of deer hunting. To reduce
whitetail populations before winter
arrives, reducing or eliminating winter losses and road kills!
By increasing the survival rate of
up deer during the winter through the
harvest or more deer in the fall, there
is a very real possibility that annual
losses to the deer population can be
reduced, resulting in a healthier herd.
The additional buck harvest that
would result from allowing hunters to
shoot spikes or better would be a drop
in the bucket compared to the many
thousands of deer lost during recent
severe winters!
Which would you prefer; allowing hunters to harvest more deer or
continuing to support regulations that
result in more whitetails dying during
winter than hunters harvest?
The number of deer hunters in the
UP has been steadily declining since
mandatory APR regulations were
adopted for the region. The DNR estimated that 107,412 deer hunters hunted whitetails in the UP during 2008.
That number was down to 103,937
during 2013 and plummeted to
84,099 for 2014, a decline of almost
20,000. Not all of the hunters who
failed to hunt deer in the UP during
2014 were UP residents, of course,
but a portion of them certainly were.
The most restrictive deer hunting
regulations in the state are obviously
responsible for fewer hunters traveling to the UP to hunt deer at the same
time the number of UP residents who
hunt deer is dropping.
During 2015, for example, when
the Natural Resources Commission
(NRC) made a decision to make antlerless deer off limits to UP bowhunters after some hunters had already
purchased deer licenses, those hunters
were given the opportunity to get a
refund for their money by September 18. A total of 1,529 people took
advantage of that offer, according to
DNR Marketing & Outreach employee Fran Heffron.
She reported that 674 hunters who
bought single or combo deer licenses
returned them and did not repurchase
another deer license. A total of 855
people returned combo deer licenses
and then bought single tags. Thousands more failed to even buy a deer
The DNR reported that only
63,202 UP residents bought deer

licenses during 2015 compared to

70,154 in 2014, a decline of another
7,000 hunters. Low deer numbers is
also contributing to the decline of
hunters. Those who are seeing few,
if any, whitetails have little incentive
to keep trying. The same is true for
hunters who see deer, but are unable
to shoot those that they see because
of antler restrictions.
Personally, I saw eight antlered
bucks that I could have shot while
hunting the UP with both bow and
rifle during the fall of 2015, but
because I had a combination deer license, it wasnt legal to shoot a single
one of those whitetails. None of them
had at least three points on one antler.
And I know I wasnt alone.
Although the UP deer population
is too low for some hunters, it is not
low enough that it is necessary to protect any yearling bucks by mandatory
APR. Enough young bucks would be
let go by veteran hunters who voluntarily pass up spikes and forks to
insure a carry over of bucks to older
age classes. Deer hunter numbers
are now low enough in the UP that
the light hunting pressure insures
plenty of yearling bucks survive even
if hunters didnt voluntarily pass up
young bucks.
When I started deer hunting in
the UP during the mid-1960s and
deer numbers were lower than they
are today, hunters who bagged any
antlered buck were doing good. In
those days, the DNR had a handle on
approximately how many whitetails
there were in the UP as well as the
rest of the state. Today, they dont
have a clue about UP deer numbers
and readily admit it.
Spikes or better were legal in
the 1960s and 70s and those regulations made it possible for the UP deer
population to reach all time highs in
1995. Those buck harvest regulations
today would not have any negative
impacts on UP deer and deer hunting
any more than they did back then. A
comparison between my deer hunt
in the UP last fall and the 1960s
confirms there are more deer in the
UP today than there were then and it
would not have hurt the herd if spikes
were legal for all licensed hunters.
In fact, it would have been a benefit
if spikes or better had been legal in
the UP since 2008 instead of the
regulations that are currently in
Its imperative that deer hunters who also recognize the benefits
of allowing UP hunters to shoot
spikes or better to make their opinion
known to DNR wildlife biologists
and the Natural Resources Commission (NRC). Comments to the Commission can be emailed to secretary
Cheryl Nelson and she will forward
them to commissioners. Her email
address is
Phone numbers of commissioners are
on the DNR website.n

My Thoughts, My Views, My Opinions...Continued

Life in the fast Lane: from page 71

The author, with his daughter on a successful

turkey hunt, is tired of people making hunters and hunting criminal!
something you dont like, ignore it
or delete them as friends. One time I
posted a picture of my daughter with
her first buck, a beautiful spike. I
didnt realize that it would show up
on other peoples wall, once I found
that out, I fixed it immediately and
made sure only my friends could see
any of my pictures.

I wanted my friends to see it,

not some bunny-hugger I dont even
This woman wrote something
about how this picture makes her sad.
Oh, I am sorry if it offends you. How
about you dont comment on someones picture you dont even know.
That makes me sad.
Dont write something against
hunting on someones wall if you
dont like hunting, keep your mouth
closed, or you keyboard closed.
Its not your wall.
I dont care what you think, in
fact, you make me want to hunt even
more stuff.
It amazes me that people have
tried making hunters and hunting
criminal. Whatever happened to
minding your own business? Just
because social media gives you an
outlet to be a coward, it doesnt give
you a right to be rude.
If the fact that I am a hunter offends you, get over it.
Maybe you being an anti-hunter
offends me! Should I go and post all
over your wall a bunch of hunting
pictures? No, that would be rude, just
like commenting on someones picture who is showing a proud moment
in his daughters life.
I am tired of the one-percent
thinking they are the majority. Tired
of the anti-hunters trying to make
hunters out to be evil criminals. Its
our job to educate, both our hunting
and non-hunting friends. To show the
world why we hunt.
I really feel education is the only
way to shut people up.
For those looking to be offended,
guess what, I am a proud hunter. If
you dont like that, dont friend me,
that will save you time and headaches. I am going to post hunting pictures and guess what, you are going
to see the biggest smile in every one.
Why? Because hunting is awesome and I am proud to be a hunter!
Dont like it, I dont care.n

The author, a hard core river angler, believes a limit of three fish is too many.

Fragile fishery: from page 71

keeping just two fish. That is disappointing to me. I think about the
great steelhead fisheries of northern
British Columbia and Alaska where
most steelhead fisheries are catch and
release. For example, an angler will
spend around $7,000 for a week at a
lodge and licenses and release every
steelhead caught.
Right now this angler thinks
that keeping three steelhead or lake
trout, or another species would be
putting undue stress on a currently

fragile Lake Michigan fishery.

With the new two year Michigan
Fishing Guide out I am sure it
would be difficult to get the DNR to
work through the process to reduce
possession limits but we anglers
can be proactive and limit the
number of prized Lake Michigan
salmonids that we put in the box
or hang on the stringer. To this hard
core river angler, three is too many
right now!n

Muscatatuck Whitetails


Self or semi guided with lodging (no meals) included! Prime

time rut Archery and Firearms hunts start at $1700 (Archery)
and $2000 (Firearms). 50% deposit required at time of
booking and pay balance before Sept 1, 2016 and receive $200
off the above prices. Out of Prime time hunts are negotiable.


they have ever been?

Hunters have to worry about a
threatening comment on social media
for practicing their God-given right
to hunt and fish.
Threats are just the beginning,
people are actually writing rude comments as well. When someone posts
a picture of a nice buck or a fanned
out turkey, I have seen people make
dumb comments like poor animal
or what did that animal ever do to
What? Are you serious?
If you have the nerve to write
on someones picture criticizing
something they love, why even have
them as friends? If someone posts

or call Phil at 812-343-3271

Explore Michigans seven Wetland Wonders or a wetland near you...Prepared By MDNR

Celebrate Michigans Wetlands



ow is the time to appreciate and enjoy

these unique watery areas that are home
to some of the most biologically diverse
plant and animal life. Michigan has
countless wetland areas scattered across
the state, including seven the Michigan
Department of Natural Resources has called Wetland Wonders.
This year marked the 25th anniversary of the
wetlands month commemoration begun in 1991
by federal, state, tribal, local, nonprofit and private
sector partners.
Celebrating wetlands each May can help draw
attention to the tremendous value of these vital
areas and foster efforts to support their enhancement and expansion across the country, said Holly
Vaughn Joswick, a Michigan DNR wildlife outreach technician.
From tiny ponds, home to singing spring frogs,
to tremendous, wide wetland areas providing important resting and feeding areas for thousands of
migrating waterfowl, nesting areas for songbirds
and places for fish, turtles and numerous other species to thrive, wetlands contribute a great deal to the
states benefit.
In addition, wetlands can provide wonderful opportunities to enjoy recreational pursuits across the
state, including hunting, fishing, birdwatching and
Economic benefits are also part of the wetlands
picture. Wetlands can act as filters for future drinking water, flood control, improving water quality
and serving as sites for growing rice and other
wetland plants used to make medicines, cosmetics
and other products.
Michigans seven Wetland Wonders are premier Managed Waterfowl Hunt Areas located in the
Lower Peninsula and managed by the DNR.
They include the Fennville Farm Unit at the
Allegan State Game Area (Allegan County), Fish
Point State Wildlife Area (Tuscola County), Harsens Island at the St. Clair Flats State Wildlife Area
(St. Clair County), Muskegon County Wastewater
Facility (Muskegon County), Nayanquing Point
State Wildlife Area (Bay County), Pointe Mouillee
State Game Area (Monroe and Wayne counties) and
the Shiawassee River State Game Area (Saginaw
These areas, scattered across the southern half
of the Lower Peninsula, were created in the 1950s
and 1960s to provide exceptional waterfowl hunting and wildlife viewing opportunities. They are
still managed today to provide waterfowl habitat for
nesting and migration and for the benefit of other
wetland wildlife.
Since the beginning, the areas have been funded
by hunting license fees, but they are open for anyone to visit, use and enjoy most of the year.
Our Managed Waterfowl Hunt Areas offer access to some of the best waterfowl hunting
and wildlife viewing areas in the state, said Barb
Avers, DNR waterfowl and wetlands specialist. If
you havent visited one of these areas before, we
invite you to come experience these unique areas
and see what theyre all about. Its no surprise that

Thousands of birds gathered during migration at the Fish Point State Wildlife Area, located in Unionville. The wildlife
area juts out into Saginaw Bay. MDNR photos
several of our Wetland Wonders are among the top
birdwatching destinations in Michigan.
Heres a closer look at each of Michigans seven
Wetland Wonders.

Fennville Farm Unit

Allegan State Game Area (Allegan County)
The Fennville Farm Unit is part of the Allegan
State Game Area. This 4,100-acre paradise for
Canada goose hunting was purchased by the DNR
from the A.M. Todd Co. of Kalamazoo in 1949. The
property was originally used to grow peppermint,
but has since been transformed into a waterfowl
hunters and wildlife viewers dream.
Not only does the Fennville Farm Unit have
migrating waterfowl, it also provides opportunities
to see many other wildlife species including upland
sandpipers, golden eagles, dickcissels, white-tailed
deer, ring-necked pheasants and wild turkeys.

Fish Point State Wildlife Area

(Tuscola County)
Fish Point State Wildlife Area, located in
Unionville, juts out into Saginaw Bay. Because of
the tremendous variety and abundance of waterfowl
found here, the Fish Point area has been called the
Chesapeake of the Midwest. During spring and
fall migrations, the habitat and food resources at
this site attract thousands of ducks and other water
Fish Point is an excellent birding and wildlife
watching spot. An observation tower and wildlife
viewing trail provide excellent opportunities to see
wildlife in and around the wildlife refuge.
Drive the county roads to view birds feeding

in local farm fields and wetlands. Drive north on

Ringle Road to see the tip of Fish Point and Saginaw Bay. During winter, it is not uncommon to
see snowy owls at Fish Point. Tundra Swans move
through in large numbers during spring and fall
migrations. Shorebirds, herons, egrets, bitterns and
other marsh birds make their homes here.

Harsens Island-St. Clair Flats

State Wildlife Area (St. Clair County)
Harsens Island Managed Waterfowl Hunt Area
on the shores of the St. Clair Flats is a short ferry
ride from Algonac across the St. Clair River. Spanning 3,355 acres, this area has been a prime destination for waterfowl hunters for many years.
Outside the hunting season, Harsens Island is an
excellent birding and wildlife watching spot. Viewers can find swans, herons, egrets, sandhill cranes,
muskrats, mink, deer, bald eagles, osprey and much
more. St. Clair Flats is also home to one of the largest black, and common, tern nesting colonies in the

Muskegon County Wastewater System

When people think of wastewater facilities,
many may think of smelly, unpleasant areas unfit
for humans. However, hunters and birdwatchers
know the Muskegon County Wastewater System is
something special. With large storage lagoons and
3,500 acres of agriculture habitat, this area produces
excellent habitat for ducks, geese and other birds.
The ponds at the Muskegon County Wastewater
facility are an excellent birding spot. These large
lagoons attract a wide variety of waterfowl species, including up to 12,000 ruddy ducks and over

5,000 northern shovelers during spring and fall

migrations. Both seasonal migration bird counts
are among the highest recorded for these species
in Michigan. State birding rarities eared grebes,
golden eagles and lesser black-billed bulls among
them also turn up on the lagoons from time to

Nayanquing Point
State Wildlife Area (Bay County)

Pointe Mouillee State Game Area

(Monroe and Wayne counties)
Pointe Mouillee State Game Area is located
in Rockwood on the western shore of Lake Erie.
Pointe Mouillee is one of the largest freshwater
marsh restoration projects in North America and
is composed of 4,040 acres of cattail marsh, field,
coastal wetlands and forest.
Point Mouillee is also a premier birding spot in

An aerial view of the Pointe Mouillee State Game Area provides some idea of why this place is one of Michigans
Wetland Wonders.
Michigan. Birdwatchers from Michigan and Ohio
regularly visit the marsh, field and forest habitats here to see ducks, shorebirds, herons, eagles,
ospreys, warblers and more. Pointe Mouillee often
hosts rare avian visitors. In recent years, glossy
and white-faced ibises, black-necked stilts, a white
wagtail, king rails and one black-headed gull made
appearances in the marsh.
Some of the dikes have restricted access from
Sept. 1 to Dec. 15. Check with the game area
headquarters for more information on what access
is permitted when.

Wetland areas provide important feeding and resting areas for migrating birds, like these tundra swans.

Shiawassee River State Game Area

(Saginaw County)
Shiawassee River State Game Area, located in
St. Charles, is a massive floodplain located at the
confluence of Swan Creek and the Flint, Shiawassee, Bad, Cass and Tittbawassee rivers. This unique
geographical feature creates outstanding waterfowl
habitat. The Shiawassee River State Game Area, at
roughly 10,000 acres, is the largest Michigan has to
The diversity of habitats at the site makes for
great birdwatching and wildlife viewing. Not only
can birders spot ducks, geese, grebes and coots, a
number of warbler species, birds of prey including bald eagles, golden eagles and ospreys sparrows, woodpeckers and much more also move
through the area, especially during spring and fall
We hope youll take the time to explore Michigans Wetland Wonders this spring and enjoy all
that these areas have to offer, Joswick said. And
if you cant visit one of our Wetland Wonders, visit
a wetland near you to enjoy the spectacular sights
and sounds.
Get more information on Michigans Managed
Waterfowl Hunt Areas (including locations and
maps) Several of the
Wetland Wonders have seasonal closings for
waterfowl hunting beginning in September
or October.
Celebrating American Wetlands and visiting a
Wetland Wonder are great ways to be a part of the
Michigan Waterfowl Legacy. The legacy is a 10year, cooperative partnership to restore, conserve
and celebrate Michigans waterfowl, wetlands and
waterfowl hunting community. The initiative is
a call to action to honor yesterday, engage today
and build for tomorrow. Watch a Wetland Wonders video. Learn more about American Wetlands


The Nayanquing Point State Wildlife Area

encompasses 1,505 acres and consists of cattail
marsh, farmed upland fields and shrubby lowlands.
Water control structures allow for the flooding of
farm fields for excellent waterfowl habitat during
fall migration. Waterfowl hunters arent the only
ones who benefit from the habitat management at
Nayanquing Point. It is also a popular destination
for wildlife watchers and birders.
Many birdwatchers come to Nayanquing Point
each year to see the large yellow-headed blackbird
colony which can be viewed from the observation
tower that overlooks the cattail marsh. In addition
to the yellow-headed blackbirds, red-winged blackbirds, marsh wrens, American bitterns, least bitterns and swamp sparrows build their nests among
the reeds in the spring and summer months. The
area boasts a large concentration of warblers and
other neo-tropical migrants in the spring, especially
in the shrubby areas along the dikes.


Readers Choice Trail Cam Contest

Visit our website ( to vote for your favorite trail cam photo each
month. The photo with the most votes will receive a Woods-N-Water News mock Cover featuring
their photo. Once we have twelve monthly winners from our website, well ask you to choose the
Grand Prize winner which will get a new Stealth Cam.
Send your photos to: (please submit in jpeg format)

Brian Laughlin had fall trail cam

photos from VanBuren County with 13
different bucks, (this photo shows four
bucks) during the seasonhowever,
they only saw one 3-point during hunting times!

Joe Miko
this pretty
wood duck
on his trail
cam near

Jake Hessler got this photo

of four bucks the day after
Christmas with his new trail

This curious young buck was

captured by Lauren Trainor
of Bellevue.


Don Mangold caught this buck with

a mouthful on his camera near the
Indiana border in Berrien County.


Rick Godell finally pulled his trail camera from Presque

Isle County and had two interesting photos; the first
shows a bobcat along a stream and 42 minutes later the
bobcat returns with a marten.
Gabriella, 5 and
Elijah Edwards, 2
love to set up and
check their trail
cam and theres always a surprise on
what they get on
camera and were
especially happy
with these strutting

Kraig Staples trail camera located near Millersburg has captured a major
predator trail! Its not often you see a fox, coyote and sow and yearling
bears using the same area and caught on the same trail cam.

My first hunting dog Fishing for answers


Bows for the Brave bowfishing tournament

Michigan Operation Freedom Outdoors will host its first-ever Bows

for the Brave bowfishing tournament at Lake St. Clair Metropark in
Macomb County Saturday, June 18.
The tournament will begin at 8 p.m. and will run until 1 a.m. Participants should gather at the tent near the Lake St. Clair Metropark boat
launch by 5:30 p.m. to register and to hear tournament rules and regulations. Food will be provided.
Awards will be given to anglers with the biggest fish and the biggest
five fish (by weight). All fish caught during the tournament will be donated to farmers to be used for fertilizer.
To learn more about Michigan Operation Freedom Outdoors and to
sign up for the tournament, visit Please specify any special accommodations/assistance you may need when you register.
There is no cost to participate in the tournament, but participants
must have a valid Michigan fishing license. In addition, a Huron-Clinton
Metroparks pass is required to enter the park. Metroparks passes can be
purchased at or at the park entrance.
Lake St. Clair Metropark is located at 31300 Metro Parkway in Harrison
Tournament sponsors and partners include AMS Bowfishing, the
Bowfishing Association of Michigan, D and R Sports Store, Snack Daddy
Lures, Calm Before the Kill TV, the Huron Clinton Metroparks and the
Michigan Department of Natural Resources.
Michigan Operation Freedom Outdoors is a cooperative partnership
which seeks to provide outdoor recreation opportunities for individuals
with health challenges and to coordinate a support network that facilitates their recovery through connecting with nature.
Michigan Operation Freedom Outdoors partners include the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, the Eisenhower Center, Zero-Day,
Camp Liberty, the Passing Along the Heritage Foundation, the Brain
Injury Association of Michigan, the Safari Club International Foundation, the Michigan Building and Construction Trades Council, Michigan
United Conservation Clubs, the Disabled American Veterans and others.

By Larry Walter

Water Gremlin
Splitshot #PSS-2
or PSS-3
(at depths of 20'
two shot may be
needed). 1/16
oz lead jig head
preferred, 1/8 oz
maximum and don't
be surprised to
find a plain single
hook out producing
the jig!

Line from
ver wonder how it is that we could
fishing rod
rocket up to the moon, create machines
which protect us from both the extreme
heat and cold, figuring out even how to
Bait 8 to
move the outhouse indoors, yet given all
12 below
these new technical skills find our- elves to
this day being outwitted at every turn by
Here we are, millions of us the world
over for centuries having studied the way
fish do things perhaps to the extent as we
have no other critter, yet still the confusion grows.
Like it's said, rocket science angling is not. After all, in designing
rockets there are least those factors which can be counted on to perform
rather constant. And if our research into the realm of fish and fishing at
American Outdoor Consultants proved anything, it's in the fact that the
last thing that you want to be caught thinking while attempting to match
wits with fish, is to expect that anything is for certain!
Another bit of advice I've heard echoed often over the years is that fish are
"but creatures of habit". And yes, obviously this is also true beyond question. However, at the same time if we are to have any hope of coming out
on top it must be understood that the chief purpose which these "habits"
are preprogrammed to accomplish - is to assure their fanny is kept out of
our frypan!
Given all our high tech weaponry to this day theory and guesswork
rules. There you are, one tournament perhaps basking in the luxury of
being able to begin culling your catch soon after beginning - then the very
next contest still struggling at days end to get the skunk out of the box!
Of course that's not to say that as frustrating and humbling as matters can become, that we would have it any other way. Yes, although here
in America we need no longer catch our own fish as table fare in order
to survive physically speaking, spiritually speaking instilled within many
of us this need to do so lives on. As a fishing instructor of more than five
decades working with anglers of all ages, genders, and walks of life, I've
found it makes no difference - when that fish takes hold that bait gone are
those other concerns so common today to our modern daily living.
Make no mistake, what makes fish this challenging to match wits with is
based upon some mighty complex and brilliantly designed physiological motivations. And where here in this PUTTINGITALLTOGETHER
column weve discussed a good deal of what weve learned about what that
means to us as anglers, for various reasons some of these findings had not
been released. However, those reasons now eliminated in future issues
these findings too, will now be included.
Next month - think defense first!

Vertical jigging on the huge St. Clair and Detroit Rivers calls for lead jig
heads in the three eights to two ounce range. Right? Well, most of the time,
yes. However, where it's true these heavier jig heads permit the bait to both
be put where it need be, plus given the proper rod action, makes these
foods real or fake look real and healthy - the problem with that is that fish
at times are not content with putting forth the effort necessary to pursue
foods which appear healthy. Willing to set out much (much) quicker and
much (much) more distance to take a bait that appears to be floundering,
the answer is simple. First of all, the fish having been proven fussy, I use a
jig head of only one sixteenth to one eighth ounce then, about ten inches
above a split shot of about one quarter ounce is added. (The Water Gremlin PSS-2 size our #1 choice, in deeper water and/or stronger current two
may be needed). Letting this shot thump bottom it is immediately raised
up again about that same 10 inches. And with that lightweight jig now flipping, flopping and tumbling along down beneath without need of a stinger
hook, BAM! Fish on! A mite harder to master, yes. But then again there's a
lot to be said for being the only one back at the launch with fish.
Picture walking back from our bow blind when in an open weed field
about a hundred yards out front a huge buck of a lifetime pops up into
view. Perhaps instinctively we may crouch, but with it bounding off with
powerful leaps of 20 foot, we know that to take up chase would be foolish.
However, take this same scenario but this time instead of the buck racing
off it stumbles, falling right back down. Our turn to take off with the powerful leaps now - so it is that fish being savvy predators that they are act
likewise. It works throughout the open water season. For more information call 586-781-5777, Monday-Saturday 9 am 7 pm.


ear after year as I was a vendor at Woods- N-Water News Outdoor Weekend
in Imlay City, I would leave my booth and go visit the puppy tent. I mean,
who can resist at least going in there and enjoying all those pups? I have
never had a hunting dog and was honestly a bit nervous at the thought of getting
Last September at Outdoor Weekend, I brought my kids with me, need I say
They immediately fell in love
with a black lab pup, which we would
later name TANK, simply because we
pointed him out in the litter and said,
Look at that one, he is a TANK.
He was one of two black, two
blondes and one chocolate. The breeder
was Cass River Labradors out of
Mussey. Garrett Otulakowski was the
owner, it was very reassuring to see the
care and consideration that he and his
family had for the pups and their mom.
Again, I was very unfamiliar with
raising and training a hunting dog, but
what mattered most was that he was a
good family dog. The kids couldnt get
By Tricia Auten...Pretty Hunter
enough of him, and now he is definitely
a part of the family.
He was about eight months old when we took him on his first hunt for pheasants. It would also be the first time that I would shot a pheasant myself. Last
fall Woodland Acres near St. John and Pheasants Forever put on an all womens
pheasant hunt for free. I got together a few gals went out there and I was the
conservationist of the day, I let all of the birds that the dogs pointedlive. There
is definitely a lot of air around those birds to shoot!
Woodland Acres was gracious enough to let me back to redeem myself in
their fields, so Jim the owner sent us out with 10 birds and we put a couple of
birds out at a time and would train the dogs. It was amazing to watch their natural instincts kick in, they figured out how to use the wind to their advantage and
when they found the scent of that bird there was nothing that was going to stop
them from getting it.
It was a few rounds in when, that perfect scenario happened, he got on the
bird, flushed it out, I executed a successful shot and he retrieved the bird and
brought it to me. I was absolutely elated! That was such an amazing feeling to
hunt with my dog. I now know why those who hunt with their dogs love it so
much. I cannot wait to do it again!


Casey Richey caught his record 36

lb. 13 oz. behemoth on a #9 floating Rapala silver/chartreuse in less
than 6 feet of water. Richeys deadly
strategy was to fish lures just under
the surface. Author photos

must also be stealthy, forget deep water tackle and flashers with meat rigs.
For this kind of fishing go with 10 lb.
clear mono line and use inline Offshore or Church planer boards to take
stickbaits far from the disturbance of
the boat. Downriggers set shallow
will catch some fish and high lines,
dipsy divers and diving planers will
work too. But if you want consistent
catches go stealthy with boards and
lures set far to the boat.
Unlike spring Coho or king
salmon Great Lakes brown trout are
somewhat shy, easily spooked and
they demand a stealthier approach
if you want big fish to strike offerings. These are not your average two
pounders but big browns of monumental proportions. Im talking about
bigole monster fish with huge maw
and beer belly shaped like a football,
which will violently jerk your board
back and melt line off your drag like a
king gone berserk. Beautiful spotted
trout will make your heart skip a beat
when you feel their power on the end
of your line.
Savvy spring trollers have learned
to stalk fish in the skinny water found
at river outlets. Big browns are nuts
about chasing baitfish that frequently
congregate where river water is slightly warmer than the big lake and forage
fish congregate in spring. Thats why
stickbaits or minnow-imitation lures
get those big browns snappin.
Casey Richey caught his record 36
lb. 13 oz. behemoth on a #9 floating
ies managers are slow to increase
Rapala silver/chartreuse in less than 6
meager stocking numbers. Michigan feet of water. Richeys deadly stratcould have monumental brown fishegy was to fish lures just under the
ing if the DNR would simply beef
surface, place Rapala sticks 100 ft.
up stocking efforts. You would think behind in-line boards and troll dropfisheries managers would be eager
offs, rivermouth areas, along beaches,
to increase brown stocking programs
inside or outside the harbor and target
with recent cut backs in salmon
huge browns feasting on schools of
plants, heck they have unlimited
alewife. Richeys monster slammed a
Rapala inside the pier heads at Frankspace in hatchery facilities. It is my
fort adjacent to the public beach.
opinion, now is the time for MichiTiming is the key for monster
gans DNR to rebuild our once world
success. Go when big browns
famous brown fishery. Meanwhile,
shallow under warming
if your quest is for a 20 pound-plus
brown you better book with Milwau- trends and feeding heavily. Forget
early spring when ice first melts and
kee Guide Eric Haataja at (414) 7792-pound browns become active. Wait
0479, online at
until late April and the entire month of
or email Just
take a peek at his website and look at May when baitfish draw huge browns
the spectacular monster brown fishery toward shore. The Frankfort/Manistee
area of Michigan historically serves
Wisconsin has created through aggresup big browns, and lots of them, when
sive fish stocking efforts.
water warms and massive schools of
For this brand of Great Lakes
alewife rush the shallows to spawn.
fishing small boats have a distinct
Impressive-size browns planted by
advantage over large vessels because Wisconsin are pushed across the big
of their small profile, reduced shadow lake by prevailing southwesterly
and less water disturbance. You see,
winds until they congregate near rivfishing for spring browns requires a
ermouths that draw millions of baitstealthy approach. Tactics employed
fish. Concentrate on depths less than

Stalking shallow water



ichigan is blessed with

some of the best Great
Lakes spring brown trout
fishing in the country.
Action heats up shortly
after ice-out and by the
time June arrives the fishing is downright spectacular
with plenty of 2-6
pound fish and
a few beer belly
monsters of unrealistic proportions
mixed in.
I caught my
first 10 pound Lake
Michigan brown in
1966 while casting a blue/silver
Little Cleo at the
mouth of the Platte
River. Since then
I make yearly
treks in search of
trophy browns and
over the past five
decades Ive seen spectacular fishing.
For years the DNR planted Frankfort
and Manistee and created great fishing
but reduced stocking ruined fantastic

catches. Today, with goby populations at an all-time high the DNR is

slowly refueling this dynamic fishery.
Browns are one of the few big water
species that feed on gobies and the
DNR has finally recognized brown
populations are flourishing because of
the endless supply
of food.
Personally, I
think Michigans
fishery managers need to mimic
Wisconsin brown
management policies and increase
stocking efforts.
Just look at those
monster browns
coming from
Milwaukee Harbor. Its sad that
Wisconsin anglers
boast the hottest
fishery in the USA
and unbelievable
catches earned Milwaukee the nickname BROWN TOWN because of
strong stocking efforts from Racine to
Sheboygan; while Michigans fisher-

By Kenny Darwin

25 feet, with plenty of fish coming

in less than 10 feet of water. Huge
swirling schools of alewife create underwater tornadoes of silvery baitfish
that hold browns in skinny water. As
mating occurs, millions of alewife
swirl in tight circles, white flanks
reflecting light in every direction and
the predatory browns go bonkers.
Feeding frenzies become the norm
rather than the exception and it is
common to catch big piggish browns,
sides bulging with baitfish, tails sticking out of their esophagus and still
they will slam any minnow-imitation
lure in their path. This is when they
are in a precarious position, gulping savagely at the awesomely vast
amount of food, somewhat easy to
catch. Richey caught his 10 lb. plus
World Record fish on Mothers Day.
The main trolling technique in
skinny water for browns is to go
stealthy. The idea is to stalk unsuspecting shallow water fish and get
lures in their face. Most modern
trollers use silent bow mounted
electric trolling motors to slip into
deadly catching range. Captains troll
spoons behind Dipsy Divers or snapweights and stickbaits behind in-line
planer boards. If running shallows,
try snapweights to get spoons 6-12
feet down. Browns can be boat shy,
so keep leads from the weight 35-50
feet back. Dipsies are set on #3, with
no ring and placed 20-45 feet from
rod to diving planer. Stickbaits trail
in-line boards from 30-150 feet back.

Brown trout medicine that mimics Great

Lakes forage fish include: (top-bottom)
Yo-Zuri Pin Minnows, Rapala, Husky
Jerk, Yo Zuri Minnow, Bomber and Reef
Runner. Experiment with color; lure size
and leader length until you hit on the hot

Big browns are boat shy and will

gobble lures trolled far behind in-line
boards. The trick is to get boards way
out, far from the shadow of the boat.
One of my deadliest trolling
tactics is to replace large downrigger weights with 1.5 lb. lead balls
attached to lines using Church clips.
The tiny weight does not spook
skinny water fish and the weight
keeps lures in the strike zone. This
tactic is deadly with spoons and it
works better than dynamite for trout
and salmon when trolling plugs or
stickbaits. Snapweights also function
to keep weeds off your lures and they
are easy to lift and clean and quick to
reset lures.
Trolling speed varies from day to
day depending on current direction,
wind and water temperature. In cold
water it should be about 1.8 mph. Increase trolling speed as waters warm,
try 2-2.5 mph for most conditions.
The key to shoreline browns is location. They will hold off pier heads,
along sandy beaches, close to river,
stream or warm water discharges.
Success comes to those who read the
water, monitor water temperature and
identify where browns are holding.
Then hit those areas again and again,
keep lures in front of active fish.
At times, shoreline fishing can
be tricky. Some captains prefer to
place the boat outside the second
sandbar and run long leads to in-line
boards pulling surface hugging lures
in the shallows. Savvy trollers select
shallow running lures, in the upper 3
feet of water. Big browns often have
baitfish pushed tight to shore, pier
heads, rocks, sandbars and if you can
get your lure in their face they will
slam it.
The stream plume and its current
is a prime area to hold both baitfish
and browns. Keep in mind that wind
will change the plume direction,
frequently bending the current downwind toward shore. Structures like
piers drop offs, humps, wave troughs,
jetties and deep holes washed out by
the river flow that are near discharge
areas will hold fish. Discolored water
created by river water brushing along
clear lake water is a good location.
Browns like to stalk prey from the
cover of discolored water.
Start by using a selection of
spoons and stickbaits. Spring browns
usually prefer regular size spoons
rather than magnum varieties. If you
run spoons off boards place a 1/4 oz.
weight about 6 feet in front of the
lure and run spoons 30-60 feet back.
Stickbaits are the bread and butter
lures for browns. Use a variety and
as soon as you determine the size and
color browns want, remove unpro-

ductive models and load up with hot

presentations. Adjust lure spread to
meet their needs. If fish are in a small
area, reduce the number of lines and
make frequent turns to keep lures in
the hot spot. Open water trollers use
4 boards on each side, one Dipsy and
riggers. Use small sticks early in the
season like Jr. Thunderstick, Pin Minnow, #7 Rapala, Reef Runner Ripstick and Yo-Zuri Crystal Minnow.
When water warms and fish become
active switch to larger lures such as
#9 or #11 Rapala, Bomber, Thunderstick, Rebel Fastrac, Reef Runner
Ripstick, Smithwick Suspending
Rogue, Husky Jerk, and Rattlin
Rogue. Use natural finishes in clear
water and brightly colored sticks with
fluorescent hues in discolored water.
There are a number of in-line
boards on the market that will work
to take browns. Use boards that can
handle rough water, track far to the
boat side and have space-age material
on the clip that holds line like glue.
They must also track straight and
allow you to run 2-4 boards on each
side of the boat without tangles.
Early morning and late evening are
always good times to troll; some of
the best action comes during mid-day
when boats clear and baitfish congregate into a small area. Discolored
water from a discharge or rivermouth
can draw fish, hold them and provide
fast-paced action. Browns can also

see lures better in muddy water when

the sun is high. Spring rain warms
skinny water and enriches it with
oxygen and nitrogen which makes
baitfish active and browns love to
chase forage under the cover of low
light conditions. Overcast weather,
highlighted by warm air, will keep
browns active all day.
I prefer to begin outings at St. Joseph and move north to South Haven,
Saugatuck and Grand Haven as the
spring progresses. Come the second
week in May I end up near Frankfort
pier and make several trips to the
mouth of the beautiful Platte River in
Benzie County. Platte Bay is where
Captain Jack Duffy, my high school
stream trout fishin buddy, landed the
once state record 30 pound behemoth
using a silver flatfish trolled 200 feet
behind his 16 feet boat.
With increased brown plants
from the DNR and booming goby
forage fish trophy size brown trout
will be more available at Great
Lakes river ports this spring. Brute
brown fishing will peak in May
and good fishing will last until
June; although cold water held
browns at Ludington, Manistee
and Frankfort until July last spring.
By using stealth trolling tactics
and pulling minnow imitation stickbaits and flashy spoons you can
increase your chances of icing a
monster brown trout.n


UV or brightly colored spoons trolled

behind downriggers or snapweights
set far behind in-line boards is deadly
when trolling discolored water near
river outlets or along beaches.


Spor ting Collectibles...Spring 2016

Sport Show Finds

rank Baron was fishing Phoenix Lake with his father late
in the summer of 1943. The
two were several hundred
yards from where the lake
flowed over the spillway and
resumed its meandering way as the
Middle River Rouge. They had caught
good-sized pike before, but that day
they were targeting largemouth bass
using leaches. They were exploring
the southern shoreline when
Frank spotted a stump exposed because of low water
levels in the dammed up lake
and then noticed several lures
hanging from its weathered
sides. So, doing what boys
do, he waded out to the
stump and pulled off three
different wood lures.
Two of the baits
were in rough shape
but the third still
showed good color and had a sharp
treble hook embedded in the stump.
He thought that some unlucky fisherman must have just lost it, so he
claimed it as his own. It turned out
to be a 3-inch Lauby Wonder Spoon,
a wood bait that had been made in
Marshfield, Wisconsin since 1938.
Frank told me the story about his
valuable find sometime ago, so I have
since been interested in similar tales.
Here are two other stories shared with
me at the recent Grand Rapids Ultimate Sports Show that should be of
interest to my readers.
Carl Van Heck from Kentwood
brought in a Heddon Game Fisher lure
in rainbow for me to photograph. Carl
is seventy-nine years young and told
me that he had been fishing Ratigan
Lake in northern Kent County when
he was nine or ten years of age. He
found this lure floating in the water,
liked the lures shape and color, cut
off some braided black line, and then
put it into his tackle box. He kept it
there as a memory of a great days
fishing ever since!
Heddons three-piece Game Fisher

was first introduced in 1924 but disappeared after the 1933 season, so Carls
discovery is at least eighty-three years
old. Nice find!
Ray Cederholm has a tackle box
filled with lures he has found wading
Manistee Lake each year after ice-out.
One of his favorites is a 3-inch red
and white wood lure that he discovered in the mid-1950s. Ray brought
the bait into the Grand Rapids Ultimate Sports Show in March
for me to see. With a little
help from my friends, we
identified it as a Drakes SeaBat, which had been made in
Milwaukee for several years
starting sometime in 1931
when Harry F. Drake applied
for a patent. Drake received
patent #1870559 on August
9, 1932 for his sophisticated fishing lure,
which featured an adjustable aluminum vane that could be
turned flatter so the bait would travel
near the surface or angled down so the
lure would dive to the desired depth.
The shape of the lure coupled
with the vane caused the lure to
rock from side to side and travel in a
sinuous path. A dual purpose hollow tube connected the two sides of
the adjustable diving vanes. A ball
bearing was inserted into the tube,
which would roll back and forth as the
lure wobbled from side to side creating a clicking noise and act as a fish
attractor. If the bait was fished at the
surface, air would enter the tube as it
moved through the water and then be
discharged when it moved below the
surface creating a stream of bubbles
and a gurgling noise.
The one ad I have found for the
Sea-Bat came from a 1932 issue of
Fur, Fish and Game magazine and the
copy read: The ball does it...built for
action for shy game fish...
The next item this month is an
interesting ice fishing rod and reel
that turned up at a recent show. The
solid fiberglass ice rod itself measures

Photos Top to
Bottom: Frank
Baron pulled a
3-inch Lauby
Wonder Spoon
similar to this one
off a stump in
Phoenix Lake in
1943. This Heddon
Game Fisher lure
was found by Carl
Van Heck floating
on Ratigan Lake in
1946. He has kept
it ever since! Ray
Cederholm was
wading Manistee
Lake after ice-out
in the mid-1950s
when he found this
Drakes Sea-Bat
wood lure. A near
perfect example of
Drakes Sea-Bat in
the box (courtesy of
Rob Pavey).


By Terry McBurney


South Bend manufactured their unique Truck-Oreno wood lure for two years in
1938 and 1939. It was made from the top wood propeller off of their Whirl-Oreno
and the body of a Surf-Oreno. Courtesy of Aaron Mazigian

38-inches in length. I recognized the

plastic reel seat and cork handle with
its red-orange butt cap as a Heddon
handle, probably from the late 1940s
or early 1950s. The well-made little
black reel stumped me, however. It
has a strong clicker, which acts as a
drag, as well as an adjustable metal
drag that can be lessened or tightened
as needed. I had never seen the reel
before, so I took some photos and
sent them to friends to see if someone
could help me with identification.
But no one could so I set it aside for
another day.
Later, another friend told me the
reel was not an ice reel at all but a
spool off of some kind of spinning
reel. I started looking through my
different reference books on spinning
reels and discovered it was a spool
from the Intrepid series of spinning reels made my K. P. Morritts of
Cornwall, England during the late
1950s and early 1960s. Morritts also
sold reels to a number of U.S. companies, who imported reels under their
own brand names. These companies

were Old Pal, Horrocks-Ibbotson, and

Gladding, so this little black spool
could have been pulled off a Morritts
reel or one of the American importers
The angler who turned the spool
into an ice reel was quite talented.
He took a reel foot off of a fly reel or
a small casting reel and riveted it to
the bottom of the spools center post.
Then he carefully cut out part of the
plastic spools top rim and riveted a
handle repurposed off the same reel.
The result was a smooth, well-running
little ice reel, and perhaps one of a
The third item is an extremely
rare lure that I had seen before at a
few antique fishing shows or at major
auctions. It is called a South Bend
Truck-Oreno, and every time I see one
I am amazed that South Bend actually
made it or that anglers bought one to
fish it! Aaron Mazigian from Benton
Harbor brought this into the Grand
Rapids show. The story goes that
several of the top South Bend executives were going fishing in Canada

An early Hurd Super Caster with not one rod but two. It was made in Almont, Michigan
during 1946. Author photo
that launched the Hurd Lock Company came from a dilemma that plagued
automobile owners almost from the
beginning. A cars spare tire was
either stored on the fender in a wheel
well or on a rack across the back of
the vehicleand they were often stolen. Edwin came up with the design
for an automotive tire lock and chain
and started producing it about 1920 in
the two-stall garage behind the family
home on the eastside of Detroit. His
product sold well, and other locks
were added to the line with production quickly moving to a larger machine shop on nearby Gratiot Avenue.
Within ten years, sales outgrew this
space and Hurd moved the company
to the old two-story foundry in Almont, Michigan, forty miles north of
the Gratiot Avenue shop.
Amazingly, the company grew
during the Depression, though profits
were non-existent. Employees were
added as Hurd took on more automotive accessory business. The company
expanded into far more products
than just keyed and combination
locks adding automotive door, trunk
and ignition locks, as well as other
automotive hardware. The companys
profits continued to be a challenge
during the late 1930s through 1941,

but World War II changed all of that.

The company, uniquely positioned for
the war effort, was quickly awarded a
major contract to manufacture naval
ordinance - shell primers for naval
guns after which profits made an immediate turnaround.
Sometime during the war years,
Hurd, with his chief engineer and
other Hurd employees, started working on a revolutionary reel and rod
design that would become known as
the Hurd Super Caster. The patents
tell some of the story with six Hurd
patents granted between September
24, 1946 and December 11, 1951.
These cover the basic style of the
one-piece reel and handle; the reels
design; the Super Casters distinctive
black and red vinyl carrying case; and
the design for the machine that would
carve the checkered design onto the
walnut handles.
An article was published in
the August 29, 1946 edition of the
Almont Times-Herald newspaper
entitled: New Casting Rod Made
By Hurd Lock Wins Acclaima
Dream for the Angler Comes True.
The article stated that the company
was working on the production of the
Hurd Super-Caster and close to 400
employees were working on the proj-

An unknown Michigan craftsman built this ice combo using a Heddon rod
handle, a fiberglass rod and a spool from a Morritts spinning reel. (Rt.)
An exploded view of how the ice reel was fashioned from a spool and
repurposed parts from a second reel. Author photos

ect. The article went on to announce

their national sporting magazines ads
for 1946. It also introduced the Hurd
Super Caster - a reel built right into
the handle creating a rigid, one-piece
frame. It also featured a thumb button
that allowed the angler to delicately
control the drag instead of thumbing
the spool. The Super Caster could
also be ordered with interchangeable
rods of different lengths and actions.
Some of the 1947 Hurd ads listed the
selling price, which was an amazing
$45 - a lot of money in those years.
Starting in 1946, returning G.I.s
bought record amounts of fishing
tackle including the Hurd Super
Caster. My best estimates are that
over 101,000 of the Super Casters
and 3,300 of the lower-priced Caster
combos sold between 1946 and 1950.
However, spinning reel sales exploded in the late 1940s and caused bait
casting reel sales to plummet including the Hurd combos.
The Hurd Super Caster that I
found was unique in two ways. First
it came with two interchangeable
steel rods. One measured 4-ft 6-inches when mounted on the rod handle,
and the second measured 6-inches
shorter at 4-ft. The second unique
feature was a very low serial number,
which was 669, the lowest Hurd
Super Caster combo serial number
that has turned up so far. It would be
interesting to know whether Hurd
started their serial numbers at 1 or
500 as quite a few other manufacturers did?

Woods-N-Water News Readers:

Tell me where you found an

interesting fishing lure, and I will put
together an article showing the lures
discovered and telling the different
stories about how they were found.
Contact the author at Photographs are important, so please send


and had a good chance for some big

muskies on the trip. Someone at the
South Bend plant took the 3 -inch
wood propeller top of the WhirlOreno and married it to their top
selling 3 -inch Surf-Oreno body and
then added heavy-duty through-wire
construction, a 1/0 center treble hook
and a 7/0 feathered treble hook at the
rear. It weighed in at 5-oz. with a total
length of 9-inches. I always felt that
someone put it together as a joke, but
the lure was taken to Canada and it
must have caught fish! The TruckOreno was cataloged for only two
years, 1938 and 1939, and offered in
just three colors: red and white, frog,
and butterfly, which was a yellow bait
with black stripes and painted black
eyes with red blush. Aarons TruckOreno was in rough shape because
someone had fished it hard, but it
still was one of the most desirable of
South Bends lures.
The last item this month is a very
special early Hurd Super Caster reel
and rod combo that I recently came
across. I first wrote about the Hurd
Super Caster combo in the May 2011
issue of Woods-N-Water News in my
article entitled On the Button - The
Hurd Super Caster.
Edwin P. Hurd, a Detroiter all
of his life, was born February 26,
1891 to Charles and Margaret Hurd.
The first records listing him besides
census rolls were his WWI draft records, which state he was married and
employed as a purchasing agent for a
local business on Woodward Avenue.
The 1920 U.S. Census lists him as a
salesman auto parts and married
to Anna Mary Bicker, a naturalized
citizen from Ontario. Ten years later,
the Census lists his employment as
President, lock manufacturing company.
Edwin Hurd was described by the
people he worked with as someone
who always had good ideas. The idea


Breed development...By Len Jenkins

Todays English setter

he modern American-bred English setter is one of the worlds

great gun dog breeds. While
the breed itself had its origin in
England, individual dogs were
brought to North America and
became the nucleus of fine American
breeding programs which required firstclass handling of American game birds
under American conditions. Many fine
dogs emanated from these early setters,
including Gladstone, Count Gladstone,
Phil Essig, Sports Peers, Feagins Mohawk Pal, Mississippi Zev and others.
Many modern setters trace their origins
to these excellent gun dogs.
While setters were evolving in North
America, there was still considerable
breed development in England. It is this
breeding that is most responsible for the
differences between the field type-setter
and the show-type today.
The breed has had a long and
enigmatic history of over four hundred
years. In the very early days, the prime
concern with developing setting dogs
was to have the dog crouch very low
to the ground when game was found,
thereby allowing the hunter to cast a
net over the birds. These setting dogs
represented a combination of blood
lines from a variety of breeds such as
spaniels and Spanish pointers. Dogs
which maintained a prolonged point
were valued most, and those individuals
with the most highly developed pointing
tendency were bred to others of similar
inclination, even if breeds were mixed.
The pointing tendency was the
trait for which early breeders (hunters)
selected their foundation stock. These
early setting dogs were largely land
spaniel in their genetic makeup although they were the precursors of what
was to become the English setter.
Edward Laverack is generally credited with being most responsible for
resolving the land spaniel type English
setting dogs into the breed we know as
English setters today. Some of Laveracks
inbreeding and outcrossing methods
may have been criticized and even held
suspect, but he nonetheless created a

type of dog which we now consider

the English setter. There were others in
England also breeding setters, and it was
during this period in the early to mid1800s that many of the English dogs
found their way to North America.
R. L. Purcell Llewellin, a Welshman,
was very instrumental in developing a
strain of setters by mixing the Laverack
strain with others of similar quality.
There is some mystery, however, as to
what lines were bred because it appears,
secrets were kept. It is generally suspected that Gordon, Russian, and Irish
setters, as well as pointers and spaniels,
were incorporated into the foundation
of this early stock. In any event, it was
Llewellin who developed the fine strain
of field dogs which became known as
Llewellin setters.
While some controversy raged in
England regarding the breeds development into rather diverse strains, the
American English setters were also
developing. Throughout this period,
imports were made and many of these
imports were bred with the native stock.
The Llewellins soon achieved fame as
trial dogs and gained easier acceptance
into early American field breeding than
did their Laverack counterparts. Consequently, the Laverack type evolved
basically into the show setter while the
Llewellin, either kept pure as a strain in
order to preserve the Llewellin name or
blended with native setter lines, became
the fieldtype.
Today, most gun dog enthusiasts
who own an English setter own the
field-type, the one most similar to the
original Llewellin. This is a superior gun
dog in many respects. English setters
have a tremendous desire to please and
accept the hunters restrictions easily
in order to work properly. Etiquette
is important to the full enjoyment of
the hunt. The English setter obligingly
channels his energy and desire to work
the game willingly in accordance with
his owners rules. He finds game, points
it, marks its fall, and retrieves it to hand
in a controlled and civilized manner. He
willingly modifies his stalking nature to

Eliminates high
heating bills.
Up to




States. This is where they seemed to

achieve prominence early in their development on this side of the Atlantic. The
heavier coat, more pronounced retrieving instinct, and close working tendencies have endeared them to grouse and
woodcock hunters of New England, Appalachia, and the Midwest. Since their
early days up north, however, they have
also become accomplished at working other kinds of game in the South
and West. While many setters are still
naturally close-working dogs, certain
strains have also been developed which
are naturally bigger running, much like
the pointer. Whether youre interested
in a big-running or close-working setter,
there are individuals within this breed to
meet your specific needs.
Setters are exceptionally good at
working all game birds if given adequate
experience. A finished grouse dog will
adjust to hunting pheasants or quail.
There is no upland game bird a setter
wont hunt.
The field sport enthusiast who has
never owned a setter is missing the
pleasure of working with this very
fine breed. Because some setters are
quite sensitive, they must be hand-led
carefully to bring out all their virtues.
Such dogs simply would not do well for
someone who is indifferent to his dog or
harsh in his handling. But for the hunter
who wants an easy handling, classy,
beautiful, dynamic field dog who will
work hard and long to enhance the hunt
with bird finds and high style, todays
English setter is hard to beat.n


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make stylish points a pretty fair distance

from the quarry so as not to spook it
into flight before the hunter could be in
position to make the shot.
The dog will bound out after a fallen
bird and recover it in a fine retrieve, relinquishing the bird to hand before going out again to continue the quest. All
the while the dog works, he does it with
animation and style. He gives his all to
his work and derives pleasure from both
the pursuit of game and the pleasure he
brings his owner. Todays English setter
is indeed a class individual in the field.
Besides being a superb gun dog, the
setter is an exceptional companion dog
who thrives on maintaining close association with his owner and the family to
which he belongs. Setters love children
and they love to please in general.
Theyre an intelligent dog with
a highly developed sensitivity. They
obediently and enthusiastically work for
their owners satisfaction. These dogs
dispel the old myth that a gun dog is
never a pet. On the contrary, the closer
the association with their owner, the
better the field performance.
The modern field setter is a beautiful
animal that moves in a graceful, animal
fashion. While typically smaller than
the show-style dog, they have a different
appearance and represent a functional
beauty lacking in their show-ring distant
cousins. They move in a fluid manner
and deliver an electrifying, spectacular
show when working.
The English setter is particularly
adept at working thick coverts in the
northern, colder parts of the United


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Black Bear, Elk and Turkeys, taken by fair chase in the state of Michigan. We use the Boone and Crockett method to score all three
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Readers dog concerns answered...By Charlie Linblade

Dog training and handling questions


I am looking for a good family dog

that can also hunt. I imagine you
get asked this on a regular basis but my
wife and I are at odds tying to agree on a
breed. Any suggestions?
Rusty K. Saginaw
Yes I do and my answer is always
the same. The breed isnt as important as the breeder. Once you decide
which breed interests you the process begins with finding a breeder who produces
the type of dog youre looking for. Visit
breeders and talk about what you need.
Try to see both parents and ask questions
that pertain to your concerns. Take your
time, a snap decision could mean trouble
for years to come. If you need a second
opinion contact me. Ill be glad to help.


using painful techniques to force it to

hold the bird until told to drop. Gouging
the ear, twisting a toe or using a shock
collar all can come into play. Usually the
trainer will have a Training Table that
the dog is tied to so he cant escape. I
call it the Torture Table, which is why
we dont use this method. We teach the
Hold command so the dog learns to
hold the bird and then command the dog
to come. At that point we use praise as a
motivator. The big myth is that any dog
can be Force Broke and all dogs should
be. None of my dogs have been force
broke and all retrieve. The key is having
genetics that favor retrieving and then
using proper motivational methods such
as praise.

gets him back to you gently take the ball

while you praise him. Then sit him down
and restrain him as you throw the ball
again. Then release him with a fetch
or back command. When he gets to
the ball praise him again as he picks it
up and tell him come while showing him
the treat. As he is coming back praise
him and show him the treat. Make him
sit and pay the reward. Instead of treats
I use two or three balls as the distraction
and keep trading them off with him. This
is one time treats will work but in the
field with birds I use other dead birds as
the lure. Often the treat will not replace
the dead bird so a second dead bird works





How do get my dog to hunt closer

I have been talking to different
Im looking into getting a shock
to me? I had the same problem
trainers about training my Lab for
collar and was wondering if you
with a Lab but now I have a German
pheasant hunting. Im not a big hunter
had a preference. Also what do you think shorthaired pointer and it is even a worse
but I do enjoy going to a shooting preabout the new GPS collars?
serve a few times a year. Most trainers
Don V., Holly
Doug F., Kalamazoo
are telling me it takes two to three months
I use the Garmin/Tri Tronics line.
I start this command on leash and
of training and that my dog needs to be
I have both the Delta Upland and
use it before I heal train the dog.
Force Broke. Im not sure what that
the 550 Pro units. Both can operate a
When the dog is on leash and pulling I
means. How long do you think it takes
beeper remotely and handle up to three
pull back and say close or close here.
to train a Lab and can you tell me what
dogs at a time. Garmin/Tri Tronics also
Depending on the dog you may have to
Force Break means?
makes a standard Delta without beeper.
pull hard to get its attention. I use a slip
Mike P., Gaylord Both come in a XC model that has higher lead for this. After several days of this
Well Mike, different dogs may take levels of stimulation. Their 70 model has I will start using the command when in
longer than others but over all it
good range in the field as well as higher
the field. I will clap my hands and call
takes us two to four weeks to train a Lab levels of stimulation. I dont use the GPS
for recreational pheasant hunting. Two
collars and prefer to use the beeper to
weeks would be for a normal dog with a
keep an audio track of the dog. The down
reasonable amount of obedience training sides to the GPS collars are cost and the
17485 Dix-Toledo Rd (at Oakwood)
and four weeks for a crazy out of control fact you need to look down at the screen
Melvindale, MI 48122
dog or one that is very shy. We realize
when wondering where the dog is. With
that you dont expect a perfect dog and
the beeper I can hear it and will whistle
(313) 388-FISH (3474)
you cant spend a bunch of money on the if I hear the dog getting too far out. The
Monday-Friday: 10am-6pm.
project. There is usually an issue with
obvious plus is that you are able to find a
Saturday: 10am-5pm
the family pet being gone for two or three lost dog, even miles away.
Closed Sunday
months that can make it tough to sell the
Open Year Round
When I play fetch with my Lab he
idea to the family. Work with them six
will run around with the ball and
days a week and start the bird process
Full Line of Tackle
after just a couple of days. Most trainers not bring it back to me He is only four
Assortment of Materials For The
months old so I dont want to be too hard
will tell you that this is not enough time
but the truth is that this is not enough time on him but it is getting on my nerves. I
Live Bait
would like more structure in our play
for their methods, which is to drag the
training out as long as possible to milk as time retrieving drills and am not sure how
Hunting & Fishing Licenses
much money out of the owner as possible. to accomplish it.
Fly-Tying Supplies
Bob S., Traverse City
Three months is a joke.
Helping Michigans Fisherman Since 1959
You could use a treat to try and
Force Breaking is a process in
lure him in. If this works and
which the dog is taught to retrieve by



Andys Tackle Box

close if the dog goes off too far. If it

comes back I praise it and change directions. Once the dog understands the
command I start reinforcing the command
with the electronic collar on a low setting.


How often do you feed your dogs?

Jill O., Auburn Hills
Twice a day if Im on a long
hunting trip or vacation. One cup
in the morning, ninety minutes or more
before working. Then three cups at the
end of the day. During the summer down
time I just feed in the evening. I use
Purina Pro Plan Performance on all of the
dogs who come here, mine included.



My dog rolls in awful things when

we are out on a walk. Why is this
and how can I stop her?
Matt D., Pentwater
That usually happens either with a
young dog who is just learning the
sights and smells of the wild or with an
older dog who thinks whatever that was
smells good. This is one of the many reasons why it is a good idea to use a crate
when transporting hunting dogs. Skunks
and dead fish are two more good reasons.
I teach a command leave it that pertains
to anything I dont want them messing
with. As usual this is reinforced with the



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Reflections of U.P. trout openers past


or those who may have spent their wintertime shopping for still more fishing tackle
they didnt get for Christmas, watching fishing trip shows on television or marking off
their garage wall calendars a day at a time,
the wait is over. Michigans inland trout season opener begun in April, with a fully anticipated,
rapturous 154 days of fishing ahead.
The MDNR gathered reflections of Upper Peninsula trout openers past from some Michigan Department of Natural Resources staff and a member
of the Michigan Natural Resources Commission,
hoping to help readers tick down the remaining
The Homestead
Since 1887, the Swanson Homestead, along
Marquette County Road 581, has been a wellknown landmark located south of Ishpeming. Once
known as a trading post for the fur trade and for
providing temporary housing for loggers, trappers
and hunters, the Homestead has been a mainstay for
brook trout fishermen and women over many fishing seasons.
The tradition lives on today as the Homestead
continues to function primarily as a fish camp.
Kevin Swanson, DNR wildlife management specialist with the departments Bear and Wolf Program and Swanson family member, said perhaps the
most notable memories at the Homestead have been
provided by opening day of the annual brook trout
Family members and friends have gathered at
the camp during the last weekend of April to try
their luck on a nearby trout stream. Because stream
water levels are typically quite high and water temperatures are very low so early in the spring, brook
trout are not yet active. Consequently, a few trout in
a creel is considered to be a great success.
The remainder of the weekend is spent cutting
firewood and participating in endless Smear card
game tournaments, while planning future fishing
trips for nearby waters when conditions improve in
late May.
George Swanson, 87, is Kevins dad and the
patriarch of the Swanson Homestead. He has relentlessly pursued brook trout since he was a child.
Brook trout are the only fish in my book,
he said. There is no other creature on earth that

Rob Katona with a sizeable catch from an Upper Penin-

84 sula brook trout lake.

water I fish, Dennison said. It seems there are less

fish in the river today than in the past, but perhaps
that is just great memories trumping present day
Times have changed and I have swapped the
spawn for a No. 12 fly and the stiff spinning rod for
a fine-tuned fly rod. Regardless, even though times
and equipment have changed, my love for opening
day on the river with family and friends has not.
Cathy Pederson is a child care worker who
serves on the DNRs Becoming an Outdoors Woman program committee in the U.P. She maintains
a spring tradition of brook trout fishing and morel
mushroom hunting.
Its always exciting when April ends because
its the start of trout season, Pederson said. Last
year, I caught the fattest brookie that Id ever
She said its so nice being on a small stream or
river with her fishing pole and some crawlers or
worms. When you get that first bite the excitement
One year, I was fishing a new creek and the
A spring brook trout catch from the Upper Peninsula. fish were biting like crazy and I ran out of worms,
Pederson said. I didnt want to stop fishing, as I
was catching a lot of little guys. So I decided to
Although George can no longer partake in demanding fishing adventures requiring long-distance look for bugs and worms on the bank. I found some
grubs or something similar and put them on my
walks over difficult terrain, the memories of such
hook and wouldnt you know the brook trout loved
trips are often relived in his mind.
George has passed the Homestead on to his
When Im morel hunting, I often find little
daughter, Kristen Swanson, who continues to carry
or rivers and think, Wow, this looks like a
on the fishing tradition with her brothers, relatives
to fish. I am very passionate about fishand numerous friends.
in the rivers.
The Fish Camp
Charles Dennison, DNR unit manager at the
Michigan Natural Resources Commissioner J.R.
Pinckney Recreation Area in Livingston County,
of Ontonagon said ever since he can
said his inaugural invite to the U.P. fish camp was
day has been very special and
in April 1982 and hes made the pilgrimage north
every spring since to chase steelhead.
My father made it very special. My dad was
For me, the trout opener ranks higher than the
opening day of firearm deer season, yet the similari- born and raised on the Holy waters of the Brule
ties are striking, Dennison said. The day is one of River, between Ashland, Wisconsin and Duluth,
Minnesota, Richardson said. We were both born
the most anticipated times of the year, the value of
spending time amongst friends and family is nearly with fly rods in our hands. We had leaders and fly
line tangled in our DNA and that was a good thing.
as important as the fishing itself, and nothing will
Richardson said father and son always had a fish
ever take its place on the calendar.
on the East Branch of the Ontonagon River
Dennison said he can recall his first morning
at Sparrow Rapids for opening weekend for stream
on that river, when the bite was steady and the run
fishing or theyd walk in to a local brookie lake.
seemed to be in full force.
It was always about the brookies. Stories told
I could hear the occasional fish jumping and
about the Brule that I could repeat after the first
the sound of the drag from another fisherman as
word, but loved every poetic sentence, Richarddawn was breaking, he said. As is typical, the
water level was high and the water temperature was son said. It was always magical and is cherished
to this day. It is good to feel loved and like a kid,
Upper Peninsula cold.
Dennison said you could only wade in portions and opening day does this for many Yoopers now
doesnt it.
of the river, so knowing the river was essential.
Without that knowledge, fishing from the bank was Hot Dogs
George Madison, DNR fisheries manager for
the best choice.
the Western Lake Superior Management Unit,
I had five steelhead on that morning, using
what would now be considered an oversized spawn remembers a wily brook trout he went after on
opening day on a gin-clear stream hed spotted
bag, large egg hook and very stiff fishing rod, he
said. All of those fish broke my line before another during deer season.
This fish was in a meander bend pool at the
angler advised me that my drag was not set correctly. Regardless, even having a fish on for a short bottom of a big hill and he could see anything that
would approach the stream, Madison said. The
amount of time was addicting.
Anyone who has fought a steelhead understands stream was untouched by anglers because it was
a long hike to get there, and this fish was simply
after a few fish that they simply cannot be hurried
uncatchable because he could see anything coming
to the net. The fish are too strong and the current
toward the stream.
too fast.
Madison said he went out on the trout opener,
I have learned a lot since then, but still condressed in green and practically belly slid to the
sider myself lucky to land one fish for every four
creek to sneak up on the fish, which he caught on a
or five hooked, and that is about the norm on the

Weather wasnt very cooperative...

The 2016

barbless hook.
He was such a beautiful specimen, I smiled at him and he glared
angrily at me, and I slipped him back
into his resting pool, Madison said.
Madison also recalls fun memories of taking Boy Scouts out for the
Its amazing to catch any trout at
all when eight energized 10-year-olds
are trying to fish the edges of a trout
pond, he said. Wed mix the few
trout that wed catch in a frying pan
of butter, with a package of hot dogs.
Then everybody got to have shore
lunch and the hot dogs would pick up
some of the flavor of the trout. Good
Horrid Weather
Rob Katona, the DNRs central
U.P. recreation trails specialist, said
his family always looks forward to
the trout opener.
We consider it a holiday ranked
up with deer opener, and when midwinter comes around we start counting down the weeks, Katona said.
We wouldnt miss it for anything.
Whether snowing, or dealing with ice
or swollen streams, we improvise and
tactically go after trout, especially
brook trout, which is our preferred
target, of course.
Katona said even having to attend
a nephews baptism in Crystal Falls
(Iron County) on one trout opener did
not dissuade the familys trout ambitions.
We managed to show up smelling like campfire smoke and still got
out fishing afterwards, Katona said.
They just laughed and called us
crazy for camping and fishing in that
horrid weather.
Going back to early middle
school, Katona cant think of an
opener he missed while in Michigan.
I started going out with family
and friends and we typically made
it into a camping trip, but now with
two boys of my own, we make it a
family outing, Katona said. While
attending college at Lake Superior
State University (Sault Ste. Marie), a
group of us would always head north

of Newberry (Luce County) to camp

and fish for the opener, which turned
into a tradition for several years after
We had some really good luck
some years, especially in the lakes,
and other years we just dealt with
horrid weather and few fish, but we
still had a great time, Katona said.
The tradition ended temporarily when Katona moved out west to
Washington. He returned home to
Michigan after a number of years.
I cant describe how exciting
that first opener was. We typically fish
area lakes and streams, depending
on ice/snow pack and water levels,
Katona said. If the streams are high
and blown out, we try lakes as long
as they are ice free and you dont
need snowshoes, which is the case
more than not in northern Marquette
Katona said he did ice fish during one trout opener. On another,
he fished a small area of open water
where he had to break up the ice the
day before with a 12-foot boat.
If the streams or lakes are not
cooperative, then we will go after
steelhead in rivers, Katona said. We
do not always come home with fish
but the best part is the experience and
enjoying the outdoors with family and
Both of Katonas boys, Logan and
Trent, and his wife, Mary, enjoy trout
Logan has been asking to fish
the trout stream behind our house
until our recent April snow, but I explained that he will just have to wait
for the season to open up. He just
sighs and says, OK, Katona said.
He has the desire. We are all looking
forward to hitting the nearby lakes
or streams for another adventure. No
matter what the weather brings we
will be out there trout fishing. After
all, it is my addiction.
Check out a DNR U.P. fishing

Prepared By

By Roger Beukema


Charles Dennison and a steelhead catch on his Upper Peninsula fish camp river.
MDNR photos

he annual trout opener is history. For those that keep journals of such things, this years opening weekend, always the
last Saturday in April, wont be a standout. Weather kept
many people from hitting the rivers around Grayling. Those
that did werent on the water very long.
Because April is an iffy month weather-wise, some anglers forgo fishing and attend one of many parties in the area. Some
years its been hot, meaning shorts and t-shirts, and some cold and
windy, and even snow. This past Saturday was no exception. Temperatures were in the low 30-degree range but warmed as the day
went along.
Mid-afternoon arrived. My companions, Andy Gordon and Rob
Ward skinned into their waders, grabbed the long rods and vests
and headed for the Manistee River, a
short walk away. Several minutes went
by before I walked to the river to see
what the guys were doing. Theres
a hatch on, Ward said. Ive caught
three already.
Thats all it took for me to get my gear
on and get in the river. The second I
stepped in I felt an ice-cold sensation
coming up from my stocking foot
waders. Both feet had a leak making
for a cold wade. But Ward was right.
There were fish everywhere, surface
I threw the tiny bug I had previously tied on. They wouldnt give
it a second look. To the fly box I went. As I was digging around I
became aware of a large, heavy hatch. Bugs were in the air then suspending over the water, dipping their tails. Hendricksons, I thought,
the bug fly anglers look for this time of year signaling fly-fishing has
officially begun.
Immediately fish liked this new choice of fly. There were several
that rose for it but no tugs on the line. Out of the corner of my eye
I saw at least a twelve-inch fish feed along the bank under some
cedars. It was a nice, large fish that fed after waiting several minutes.
Following fly guide Sam Surres advice over the years, I slowly waded
downstream until I was just above the fish. Then I began moving out
into the river putting me closer, making for a shorter cast.
The first half dozen casts floated by with no response. Then I
managed to float one right through this guys kitchen and whoosh,
up he came and back I reared.
Heart pounding I thought I had him. I did but for just a moment
then he went back down without my fly in his mouth. I hung around
for several minutes thinking he might hit again. About this time I
noticed fish around me had quit feeding and the hatch was over.
In less than 45-minutes the river was full of bugs and feeding fish
then as if someone had flipped a light switch you could catch a cold
quicker than a trout.
Some people would be on the river that day for reasons that
didnt include flailing away at trout. Were headed down to CCC
Bridge, Bloomfield Township resident Neil Hepburn said. Hepburn
along T.J. LaPorte from Berkley and Herb Ashbeck of Davisburg
were paddling kayaks for the day. The threesome has paddled rivers all over the state. Last year, in three weekends, we paddled the
length of the AuSable, LaPorte said.
Other tours have been done by bicycle from the Detroit area to
Copper Harbor in the Upper Peninsula.
Asked if they were going to fish, LaPorte said no they werent
fishing. We float, watch birds and wildlife and enjoy the scenery.
But come to think of it, were probably travelling over some decent
fishing water. Maybe we should take a rod along.n


Finally, Ontario has

brought back the



By Jeff Pendergraff

t is hard to
believe it has
been 17 years
since the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources closed its spring
bear hunt. It was not closed for a
lack of bears and there was no scientific evidence indicating it should be.
It was because anti-hunting groups
were claiming too many hunters were
killing the sows and orphaning cub
It is illegal to shoot a sow with
cubs and after an investigation by
the MNR it was determined that this
was not happening as some groups
claimed it did.
Much to the surprise of everyone,
Mike Harris, then the Premier of Ontario decided to cancel the spring bear
hunt in 1999. The decision shocked
everyone and caused serious financial issues for many bear outfitters in
Ontario who depended on these hunts
for their livelihood. Many had already
booked their entire spring bear hunts
with non-resident hunters and went
out of business because of this decision.
Since the spring season closed,
bears throughout northern Ontario
have been causing all kinds of issues.
They still have a fall bear hunt, but
the success rate in the fall has a much
lower rate than in the spring. In the
fall the bears tend to focus on natural
food, such as berries and they dont
hit the bait placed by hunters as well
as they do in the spring.
The Conservation Officers and
Police Officers have been dealing with
bear complaints almost on a daily basis. They lost their fear of humans and
began coming into many communities
getting into garbage, having run-ins
with humans and causing property
damage just to mention a few. The
numbers of bears was outgrowing the
harvest and natural attrition rate and
were becoming a real danger to communities.
Two years ago, Ontario started a
pilot bear management program that
allows residents to hunt bears in the
spring in eight wildlife management
units, all which had high levels of
nuisance bear complaints.
This past October, Bill Mauro,
who is the Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry, announced a
five-year pilot program to allow nonresidents the ability to hunt bears during the spring. On May 1, the spring

hunt opened for all

bear management
units in Ontario.
This will be a great bear management tool for the MNR. During the
past 17 years, the MNR has not had
the ability to properly manage their
bear population. The bear population is at an all-time high, well over
100,000 bears. Most Ontario hunters do not hunt bear, they love their
moose and deer, but bear hunting does
not really do much for them as it does
for hunters south of the border.
According to Garry Cariou, Director of the Kenora-based Sunset Country Travel Association, the estimated
economic impact before the spring
bear closure was roughly 50 million
dollars and hundreds of jobs. Opening the spring bear hunt would almost
overnight inject millions of dollars
into the northern Ontario economy.
In addition, it was estimated that
residents had harvested fewer than
200 bears during the resident only
pilot program. By properly managing
the Ontario bear population, it will
also help with the very low moose
population in Ontario. Their numbers
reduced by bears killing a lot of calf
There are so many bears in Ontario that in some management units
you can harvest a second bear.
I killed my first black bear in
Ontario in the early 1980s when you
did not need a guide to hunt. Then we
would bring the bait with us and drive
to Geralton, Ontario. We would rent
a cabin from a fishing lodge outfitter, which included a boat. We would
cook our own meals, place our own
baits out and have a do-it-yourself
We did not always kill a bear, but
we caught many fish and had a great
adventure in northern Ontario.
Throughout the 1990s I hunted
near the same area, but with a guide.
Which was now required by law. Our
success rate was much higher using a
local guide. They provided our lodging, a boat to fish with and active bear
Having hunted bears in the spring
and in the fall, I can tell you the success rate normally is much higher
in the spring then in the fall. In the
spring when the bears come out of
hibernation their digestive system
is not working properly and the first
thing they need to eat to get it work-

The author with his first bear taken in Ontario on a self-guide in 1987.
ing again is grass and dandelions.
Once their system is back working properly they are on the feedbag.
They have not eaten much since last
fall and are very hungry. They really
need protein and normally hit the bait
very well, especially if there is some
type of meat at the bait site.
I have found that the mid-part of
May to early June can be the best time
to harvest a good bear. If you hunt
later you can run into bears that have
rubbed their hides or run into the rut.
Big boars have been known to lock
down with a sow in heat just like a
whitetail bucks do with does and you
might not see a lot of activity.
In addition, you can run into a late
spring with the bears coming out of
hibernation later than normal and in
some cases, depending on where you
are hunting, you can still have ice on
the lake and be unable fish. This is not
very common, but if we have a very
cold and prolonged winter like the
past couple of years, it can happen.
One big advantage to spring hunting is you can run into some great
fishing. Mid May in Ontario can be
the best time of the year to fish for big
walleye and northern pike. Days are
long during that time of the year. We
would fish until mid-day and get into
the blind by four and it would not get
dark until almost ten at night.
Until the spring bear hunt canceled back in 1999, several friends
and I had been going to Ontario to
hunt and fish. The spring in Ontario is
a very appealing time of year to hunt
and fish.
It can take several years to draw a
bear tag in Michigan. For those who
are addicted to hunting, (like me)
besides turkey hunting in the spring
there isnt much hunting going on
until the fall rolls around again, it can
be a great filler!
With so few bears harvested in
Ontario over the past 17 years, over
the next few years I think the bear
hunting there will be very good.

Beware, now that it is open again you

may find some unscrupulous outfitters
out there trying to make a quick buck.
There are many honest outfitters in
Ontario, but know what you are getting into before you book a bear hunt
there. When you talk to an outfitter,
ask some of these questions. How
many weeks do you hunt? How many
hunters do you take? Some may try
to take as many hunters as they can,
stay away from that person. Normally
these types of outfitters do not take
many bears, and the ones they do are
young and very small bears.
Some may have a bait site ready
for you once you get there and after
they take you to the bait, you are on
your own. Unless you feel very comfortable about handling everything
on your own, I would stay away from
this type of hunt.
Ask for names of previous clients
they have had and call them and talk
to them. You might be surprised by
how many hunters will be happy to
talk to you about their hunt. This also
enables you to ask all kinds of questions about the hunt.
All you can ask from an outfitter is
to work hard and do what they promise. They cannot control the weather,
which many times can affect the outcome of a hunt. There are all kinds of
packages offered by outfitters. Some
include food and/or a boat for fishing.
If I did not already have a trip
planned for this May, you can bet I
would be there taking advantage of
this opportunity.
I know a very reputable outfitter in north-west Ontario. They have
been in business for many years and
have harvested some big bears. They
are full-time outfitters, conducting
bear, moose and whitetail hunts. They
are full service and good people. For
more information about Ontario bear
hunting or if you have any questions
on any hunts go to my website: n

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Michigan. 989-839-4846. M-4-14TFN
LOG BUNK BEDS. $495. Amish
lodge furniture. Call Dan 989-8321866. M-4-14-TFN

TIMBER: Buying all types of timber, 5 acres or more, top price paid.
Cash in advance. Improve wildlife
habitat. Patco Forest Products, 989539-7588 after 6 p.m. W-7-12/15

POND SUPPLIES: Live gamefish for stocking. Large selection of

lake, pond and water garden supplies. Free catalog! Stoney Creek,
Inc., Grant MI, (800) 448-3873, F-4-7

BOWS arrows, quivers,
broadheads, etc. anywhere
in Michigan. Call/text Andy at
1(586)215-1481. Will pick up.


FARM (269) 628-2056 DAYS,
(269) 624-6215 EVENINGS

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Woods-N-Water News Classified Advertising

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Make sure phone number is included in your ad!




TRIP. Want to go fishing?
Book early and save. One of
Ontario's best multiple fish
lakes, fish for Walleye, Northern, Small Mouth, Lake Trout,
Perch and other fish. Well
spaced out log & framed cabins, boats have electric start 15
hp Yamaha 4 stroke motors,
depth finders and swivel seats.
$399 U.S. funds if booked before March with a group of 4 or
more (2 people per boat) www. or
toll free 1-877-434-2440. F11-TFN


black Bear Hunts Bergland Unit.
Call Shawn Montie at 906-3641678 or 906-842-3322. H-4-3

MOUNTAIN LLC this fall for your
2016 Bear Hunt. We look forward to
hunting on an expanded area of private property this fall that is in the
heart of prime bear territory. Baraga
BMU, Private land only hunts, check
out our website www.mibearhunt.
com. References upon request. Give
us a call at 800-676-9821 or call
Derek at 906-458-3754 H-6-1
BEAR HUNTS. Newberry/
Gwinn B.M.U. 1st, 2nd, 3rd seasons. Seven day hunt/lodging/
bear. Year around lodge. Great
area for fishing, grouse hunting
and 4-wheeling. Convenience
store, 39 years of business.
State and Federally licensed.
Contact: Tom Losiewski, North
Country Hunting Adventures.
1-269-330-0480. Like us on
Facebook. H-4-5
SERVICE Dog and Bait hunts in the
Newberry area only. We hunt in the
area where we live. We have been
guiding for over 45 years and will
provide references upon request.
Contact Kip at 906-293-5650. H-6-2
Unit. Be our guest at AA
LODGE. All inclusive. 5 day
hunts. $1000 - $1500. Call Roy
810-691-3373. H-5-3


(1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6)






(13) (14) (15) (16) (17) (18)






























Enclosed is $for
words to runmonths.



SERVICE - Bear hunt for
Newberry unit. 7 day hunt with
room and board. We hunt area
bait on mostly private property.
We hunt from ladder stands or
box blinds. Last year we went
11 for 13 on kills. Have been
guiding for 25 years. We do the
work, so you don't have to.
Bows and guns are welcome, 2
baits per hunter. Give us a shot,
we'll give you one. Call John
Bahn 906-586-3047 H-6-3

Hunt Trophy Bucks on one of my
thousands of acres of large private
farms with stands. October
Muzzleload hunt and November Rifle
hunt in Kentucky. Early November
Muzzleload hunt and December Rifle
hunt in Tennessee. September and
October Bow Hunt. FREE
BROCHURE 270-498-3374. H-3-5
HUNTS: Newberry/Gwinn.
Just outside of Seney Wlidlife
Refuge. High success rate.
32 years. State and Federal licensed and experienced. Guaranteed active baits. 6 nights, 5
day hunt includes lodging and
meals. Start at $750. Bow and
rifle deer hunts. $125 per day.
906-439-5242. H-5-6
25 years experience guiding for deer
and bear. Baited stands in Amasa,
Baraga, and Bergland Units. Lodging
Available. Call Ray at 906-265-9420
or cell (906) 284-2216. Licensed and
Insured. H-3-6
BEAR HUNTS: Cameron &
Sons years of experience and
licensed with the State offer
baited hunts in Newberry area.
We have acres of private and
public tracks to hunt for your
pleasure 1st and 2nd season
only. Limited hunts available.
Guaranteed active baits. Many
references available upon
request. or
visit us on our Facebook! Call
Kevin at 906-293-8550 or 906630-1034 or Clarence at 407414-7622. H-5-4
BEAR HUNTS: Booking now for
Spring and Fall of 2016. Includes
comfortable cabin, boat and motor,
baited stands. Very experienced
guides. High success rate. 3 hours
from the Soo. References on request.
$960 U.S. 705-869-3272 H-10-12-15
of Michigan still has availability for semi-guided whitetail
archery, muzzle loader and rifle
hunts in 2016. Hunts include
continental breakfast and dinner meals. Hunt on a private
400-acre parcel in beautiful and
bountiful Menominee County.
Call 906-241-9653 or 313-4102204 or visit our website www.
See our display ad. H-6-1

Specialist - We had 80% success.
Baraga, Gwen and Amasa Units Modular hunts start at $895. 7 days
lodging included. Write for more
information on how to apply for bear
permits on May 1st - 2730 S. Dort
Hwy., Flint, MI 48507 or call Dale at
(810) 814-8936 days 9-4 or evenings
John at (989) 257-2725 for more
information www.gonzobearcamp.
com. Like us on Facebook. H-5-4
Northwoods Guide Services
Inc. 36 plus years experience
100% opportunity in 1st season. Hunting only 1st season
limited number of hunters. Contact Tim 517-627-3465 or Dan
906-231-2885 H-6-2
in Michigan's UP Baraga Unit with a
registered guide. Come stay in camp
with a top pack of bear hounds and
hunters; participate in all aspects of
the hunt as seen on Michigan Out-ofDoors TV program. Limited number
of openings available. (906) 6320005 or (906) 630-0113. H-5-2
SERVICE. Bergland and Baraga
units. Federal license, 24 years
experience. Cell 906-231-9136,
Home 906-827-3731. H-6-4
BERGLAND UNIT. Guided bear
hunts over bait. State and federal
licensed bear guide. Call Rich 715663-0459 or

Private, gated paradise on Big
Manistee River offers large, wooded
sites, full hook-ups, easy access to
Lake Michigan beaches. Long season. Gorgeous newly built sites!
Coho Bend - 231-723-7321 www. R/R-4-7
Stella - Lakefront cottage w/a
boat. Furnished. Sleeps 8.
Great fishing - walleye, bass,
bluegill, perch, pike and crappies. 989-382-5491 or 989-3827722 or 989-285-2888 Ask for
Lonnie. R/R-5-3
COTTAGES Baldwin area
1,425 all sport lake frontage, 45
semi-rustic sites, four clean modern
cottages. www.lakecamp-cottages.
com 231-745-7268.

LAND IN U.P. Good hunting land,
borders creek. 517-304-6127.




Woods-N-WaterNews Classified Section

to lease for the 2016 deer season,
or beyond. Location, land size, year
leases, and price are all considered.
Jay 248.396.8322 or jwarrington2@ WL-6-3

surrounded by state land Beaver
Creek Twp, sec14, Crawford County
$60,000 land contract 810-923-0280. RE-6-2
THAT IS TRULY TURNKEY! This 3 bedroom, 2 bath
ranch has been meticulously
cared for over the last 11 years
of ownership with many updates
made to the home. Just some of
the updates include a new roof
in May of 2015, new appliances
this year, new flooring in family
room and utility room, new
water heater in 2014, generator
system in 2014, new windows
throughout nearly the whole
home in 2014, new carpet in
2015, new well just 8 years ago,
and much more! Back deck
overlooking 2 acres which
backs up to a blueberry field for
added privacy. 2.5 car garage
and a new 12'x16' shed. There
is nearby access to sandy
beach along Lake Huron that is
a short car/bike ride away, along
with bike trails and close proximity to Tawas City and East
Tawas! This place is ready to
go! Call John Stanley at (989)
876-8171 for a tour today!
1700 SQ FT HOME on 10 acres
backed up to 1000s of acres of state
land. 3/3, with 1700 sq ft fully finished
basement with full bath. Heated
attached 2 car garage. 32x40 pole
barn. In the floor hot water heat, A/C,
generator hook up. Built 2007.
$270,000. Call for pics/info 906-3410515, Owner. RE-5-3



CLUB $265,000 CALL 989-6593373 OR RE-5-3



A unique 70 acre parcel tucked into
the middle of a section of land in Missaukee County. Butterfield Creek, a
little bit of swamp and plenty of mature woods making it ideal for wildlife.
Two beautiful cabins, well, septic
with electric run in from the outside
world. Deeded access on abandoned
railroad right of way. Price $270.000
Michland Properties (231)826-3700.
906-586-9812. RE-5-2

COUNTY. Wildlife abounds
here. An updated 2 bedroom log
home w/attached garage in a
private setting a "cabin" even
the girls will love. $145,900. Call
Pam for details: 989-506-6509
Century 21 Pioneer 1102 N.
McEwan, Clare, MI 48617
PARCEL Excellent hunting 1320 x
1320 paved road frontage Jasper
Townshp Midland County Section 13
possible land contract asking
$99,900 call 989-681-3312 or email RE-4-3
ACRES between Hillman and
Atlanta. Michigan Elk capital.
Clearing with 35 ft. mobile camper.
Well water, electricity, propane gas,
secluded but close to roads and
conveniences. Great retreat for hunters or family $45,000. Open to offers.
Call Helen 248-210-6414. Randy
989-255-2169 Real Estate One.
HULBERT MI, nice 24x24
cabin on 40 acres, deer migration area, land contract possible
$59,000. Call 810-252-1571
furnished camp, very private.
Excellent property that has ridges,
swamps and blinds. CFA land on two
sides. Delta County. MLS#1086649
$85,000 Pine Tree Realty 906-2802586 - 906-280-4815 RE-6-1
Approx. tillable, wooded with
Squaw Creek running thru.
Unbelievable hunting. Magnificent
building sites. Dynamite investment.
A rare find! Only $157,900. Hurry!
Call Larry at Faust Real Estate, LLC
517-270-3645. RE-6-1
near Devils Lake features a 24 x 120
pole barn. Mostly tillable. Buy now
and build or farm. $64,900. Call Jim
at Faust Real Estate, LLC 517-9026655. RE-6-1
Farms, vacant land or recreational
parcels throughout Michigan. Call
Doug Beasley at Faust Real Estate,
LLC 517-260-2939. RE-6-1
HUNTING With 100% Woods.
Backs up to Farmland. Paved Rd.
1322 x 739 Irregular Ellington Twp.
Tuscola County $62,000 Just Land
Sales 586-419-6716 JustLandSales.
com RE-6-1
FRONT, Sits High, Over-looking a
Wildlife Bog 50 % Wooded 518 x
1332 Goodland Twp. Lapeer
County $64,000 Just Land Sales
586-419-6716 RE-6-1
BEAUTIFUL Wide variety of
Trees, 5 Acre 12 Deep Pond & 24 x
30 Garage. 2304x1320 irreg 60%
Wooded Koylton Twp. Tuscola
County $329,000 Just Land Sales

OWN ORCHARD, Cider Mill &
Fruit Winery, on 77.5 Acres, with
Apples, Pears, Grapes, Peaches,
Cherries & Black Raspberries
Complete with Buildings, Main w/400
amp, External Cooler Room, & 2
Additional Buildings Includes
Businesss, Licenses, Inventory, &
Land & Training. $600,000 Just
Land Sales 586-206-0118 facebook.
CAMP. 2 Elevated Blinds in Place
330 x 1324, 50% Wooded Lynn Twp.
St Clair County $43,000 Just Land
Sales 586-419-6716 JustLandSales.
com RE-6-1
1/2 is Leased for Farming, the Other
1/2 is Deer country. Huge Sanctuary,
Lots of Ambush Funnels 2640 x
2219- 40% Wooded Mussey Twp.
St Clair County $419,000 Just Land
Sales 586-419-6716 JustLandSales.
com RE-6-1
ACRES, Excellent Hunting, a
Creek. & 2 Rd. Frontages 1320 x
1320 90% Wooded Burnside Twp.,
Lapeer County $102,000 Just Land
Sales 586-419-6716
justlandsales RE-6-1

world record holder and Hall of
Famer David Grubb. Only trainer in
history to win all 5 gun dog championships. (did it twice). All breeds
Special Spring rates $500 per month.
Dog training book for sale and stud
service. 248-860-1009. D-6-TFN
established 1963 Psalms 90
:10: time to sell my English setters and English pointers. 1 to 4
years old. Champion sired. 269567-8279 or boondocks1935@ Andy Johnson,
Kalamazoo Area. D-5-2

and females available. Excellent hunting dogs and superb
family pets. Close working dogs
with strong point and retrieve
instincts. Reasonably priced for
the sporting family. Money back
guarantee. Eulenhof Kennels,
Gladwin, MI.
989-426-4884 D-5-2

Heres your
guide to

It is estimated that 10% of all the fishermen

catch 90% of the fish. Regardless of which group
you fall into . . . theres a sure way to up your odds
. . . simply try new fishing waters. Fish where few
fishermen ever fish.
Michigan is loaded with great fishing waters . . .
many of them over-looked. From the AuSable River
to all of the Great Lakes tributaries to the Pere
Marquette River . . . thousands of miles of streams,
lakes and rivers are now easy-to-locate on one
Professor Higbees Stream Map of Michigan is the
first and only highly detailed map of its kind. This
new 4 foot by 4 foot color map shows virtually all
for the 35,000 miles of Michigan streams & lakes on
both peninsulas. Thats almost two times the earths
STREAMMAPOFMICHIGAN is available either
rolled or folded. And, in heavy gauge clear lamination, write-on-wipe-off surface with brass eyelettes
for easy hanging, rolled only.
ROLLED $26.00 FOLDED $26.00 LAMINATED $46.00


ITS BEST! by Paul
Rheaume. Over 30 years
experience with pointing and
flushing breeds. All inclusive 4
week class that is customized
to meet your dog's needs.
Excellent for young dogs starting out, for experienced dogs
tuning up, or for dogs with
issues. $600. Find us on
Facebook or online
Rheaume's Kennel. (989) 8648606. D-3-7

T a x


P o s t a g e

I n c l u d e d

Check/Money Order Visa/Mastercard
Card#Exp. DateSignature

Mail To: Woods-N-Water News

P.O. Box 278 Imlay City, MI 48444 (810) 724-0254

100 Foot of frontage on

All Sports Lake. Build your
dream home or cottage!
Call for more details!
Sandra Hall
586-792-8000 ext. 4263.


65 Wooded acres full of wildlife! Multiple groomed

trails! Majestic bucks & turkey visit well known
food plots! Frontage on Becroft Lake which boasts
of catfish, sunfish, rock bass & more! Acres of
trails for your 4 wheeler! Custom built 4 bdrm, 3
bath FULL LOG home w/soaring ceilings, stone
fireplace, full fin bsmt & more! 2 Car att, 2 car det.
& a pole barn too! Gorgeous inside & out!


Addl Acreage Available!

J. McLeod
Realty Inc.






159 ACRES 9366 BIG FOUR ROAD KALEVA This 159 acre parcel
offers a little bit of everything! Rolling hills, open pasture land, hunting land
and building sites. Some of the large trees have been timbered off but there
are plenty of pines and new growth. This property is located on a county
maintained road for year around access. Near Bear Lake, Onekama and Lake
Michigan. Sellers are retaining all of the oil, gas and mineral rights. $160,000
MANISTEE Riverfront home/cottage with 180 of private frontage. Beautiful
views from the main living area, walkout basement and deck right on the Little
Manistee, one of the best salmon and steelhead fishing rivers in the state. The
cottage is situated in the Udell Hills area with hundreds of acres federal land
and easy access to snowmobile trails. The home features 3 bedrooms, 1 bath,
and laundry on the main floor, a loft and a daylight basement with a wood
stove. The open concept living and kitchen area has two sliders to the deck.
There is plenty of storage room in the 2 car attached garage, the basement
and a shed on the very large lot, just over an acre. Improvements include a
newer seawall, roof and concrete landing from walkout basement.
Furnishings are negotiable. Sellers are motivated. $149,900 $139,900 NEW
IRONS This large lakefront parcel has 75 frontage on Loon Lake which is
an 80 acre all sports lake. The one bedroom, one bath mobile home has an
extended living room and an eat-in kitchen. There are three large sliders going
out to the oversized covered deck so you can sit and enjoy the great views of
the lake. Many updates have been done over the years including the septic
system, 5 well, new dock in the lake, and much more. There is a 20x20 two
stall garage and a 7x9 shed with a fish cleaning station in it. Use this perfect
getaway now and then if you want to build a retirement home in a few years
move the mobile home out! Lots of room in the yard for the kids to come with
their travel trailers. Dont look at my age you must see me!! $99,900 (POT)


Call 989.329.6959 or email for more details.


River access, adjacent property up

to 191 acres available, which has
improved forest road access.


Over 80 Acres!

55 ACRES ON BURKET CREEK 5387 N. M-37 MESICK This 55 acres

has over 2000 frontage on Burkett Creek. The pine trees were cut off this
property but have some great growth coming back and a few pockets of
hardwoods along the creek and drive coming into the property. The North
Country Hiking Trail winds across this property and it adjoins Consumers
Power property to the West. There is a 12x28 one room Amish built log cabin
on it and is situated so that the deck overlooks the creek. Its all set up with
beds at one end, LP gas heater and a wood stove. Most of the furnishings are
included. It sits back off of M-37 so you will enjoy the peace and quietness of
these 55 acres. $109,900 (DEN)

Hunters Call for our Acreage Parcels

5963 W. 10-1/2 Mile Rd. Irons, Michigan
231-266-8288 877-88-NORTH

9326 S. M-37 | P.O. Box 843

Baldwin, MI 49304
What an opportunity to own 13 m/l acres and over 2900 of frontage on the Little
South Branch of the Pere Marquette River. Sitting in the middle is a very nice 2
bedroom Chalet with a walkout basement overlooking one of the best stretches of
gravel on this river. Chalet features partially finished basement with wood stove,
fireplace , large deck, garage, shed and screened in porch. All this on 13 wooded
acres with good hunting and lots of seclusion. $174,900 MLS 150432
Middle Branch of the Pere Marquette River! 720 feet of it on 6 M/L acres of seclusion with thousands of acres of Federal Land literally a few hundred feet away.
The cabin is very well maintained and as cute as it can be with 2 bedrooms and
a large deck looking out over the peace and quiet. A truly great year around location for trails, hunting, fishing, and just plain quite! $79,900 MLS 15044756

This well maintained home offers more than 3 bedrooms, 2 1/5 baths, full walkout basement, and
a wood stove. It also offers peace and quiet! Yes, it only sits on an acre but it also has an ownership interest in 70 acres bordering hundreds of acres of Federal Land. Plus 66 on great fishing,
quiet Jenks Lake. This spot is as secluded as it gets and still have all the comforts of home. Great
location for hunting, swimming, hanging out, and make memories! Association dues $275.00 a
year for taxes on 70 acres and includes road maintenance. $139,900 MLS16010264
Great cabin in the woods sitting on 10 acres! Nicely secluded and quiet
area. With a few finishing touches this could be a perfect get away or
home. Federal land right across the street to enjoy and trails nearby!
Come take a look at this property today!! $44,900 MLS 16017530

This cute little log cabin comes completely furnished for summer fun on all sports
Big Star Lake just across the road. The access has a dock, sandy beach frontage, and great neighbors! Cabin offers 2 bedrooms, porch, skylight, and all the
lake community ambiance you could ask for. Yes, it needs a new roof but it is not
currently leaking and the repair has been reflected in the price. This is a true gem
and great summer retreat at a great price! $49,900 MLS 16008295
Trail riders paradise 1/2 mile away from the Carrieville Trail Head and Camp
Ground 20 acres with a spacious 1584 square ft Chalet 3 bedrooms 1 bath and a
24x32 pole barn garage This is the perfect location for all year round hunting
fishing and trail riding fun Come see this soon it wont last long at this price
$119,900 MLS 15023009

Clean, cute, cozy! This is a great hunting cabin with literally hundreds of
public lands on 3 sides, in an area of many lakes, secluded (but still on a
county maintained road for easy year around access) and has Land Contract Terms Available! $38,900 MLS 16020598

5+ acres bordering thousands of acres of State Land very close to the ORV trails with low down land contract terms available Come see this soon it wont last long Seller is a licensed Real Estate Broker $16,900 MLS 16018110 Parcel C
Watermill Lake front lot offering 125 of frontage, electric available at the road, county maintained road, and private setting.
Great Building site close to public land, trails, and the Middle Branch of the Pere Marquette River is only 2/10s of a mile
away with access through State Land. $24,900 MLS 16019682
160 Acres of prime hunting land!!! Deer, Beer, Partridge, and much more!!! This property borders hundreds of acres of
federal land and offers nice high spots for building and nice low spots for hunting! Ask about the additional acreage available!!! MLS 16006839 $200,000 Parcel D
Square 10 acre parcel sitting on a county road with Federal land on 2 sides. All high with mixed trees, selective cut 5
years ago. Great location for hunting, snowmobiling and year around use. Electric is close, ORV trails are close and lots of
seclusion. Low Down Land Contract Terms. Additional parcels are also available. $23,900 MLS#16012724

River Enthusiasts Take Notice; Here Is A Great Opportunity To Own 2.8 Acres With 554 Of Prime Frontage On
The Middle Branch Of The Pere Marquette River. This Property Offers A Great Location In A Quiet Area, Situated
On A Dead End Road For Low Traffic Volume, Lots Of Seclusion, Walking Distance To Federal Land, 100%
Wooded With A Variety Of Large Trees, And Property Is A Perfect Peninsula In The River. Beautiful Setting To
Build Your Year Around River Retreat! Land Contract available with $3,000 down, $300 a month, 8% interest, 5
year balloon. $34,900 MLS#12056958
What a find. 80 acres with federal land on 3 sides and the Sable River flowing though the middle. This is one of
those parcels which are so hard to find and in an area of big bucks, great partridge and a few bears. Fronts on
a year around county gravel road and it completely wooded with large mature trees. If youre looking for a very
secluded parcel with great hunting, fishing and a place to enjoy the outdoors, this is it. $109,500 VR MLS
16007743 Parcel C
Located in the heart of the Manistee National Forest this 58 M/L Acres is perfectly situated between 2 county
maintained roads. Property has small creek running through it. Nicely wooded, with Michigans best mixture of
Hardwoods, Walking distance to State Land. Priced for sale, Low Down land contract terms may be available.
$69,900 MLS 16020982


Hunting or Weekend getaway offering county road frontage, public land across the road, all wooded and land contract
terms. great spot for all recreational sports, hunting, fishing, ORV riding, snowmobiles and just quiet afternoons sitting
around the campfire. 5 Acres Parcel D $10,900 MLS15057012

All Sports Bitely Lake Front Home offers 100 of sandy beach fun! Great Swimming and
beautiful sunsets are all included. This 2 bedroom, 1 bath home offers a cozy fireplace
and a sunny skylight in the living room, the kitchen has been updated with counters, cupboards, and cabinets. The two sliding glass doors both lead to a large, lake side deck for
peaceful evenings. The 3 stall garage offers a work room area and lots of storage. This
home has it all and priced below value for a quick sale. $149,900 MLS 16008505


VERY RARE LAKE FRONT - On Hillview Lake, east of Big Rapids, 23 acres,
cabin and 1700+ feet of waterfront. Family, Corporate, Development potential. $449,000

Offices Serving Lower &

Upper Michigan

great boating. Newly renovated. This is a Knock-Out Waterfront property. $149,900
20 ACRES - Wooded building sites and open land. Paved road 1/2 mile from 5000 acres of
Manistee National Forest, 7 miles west of Big Rapids, close to Hungerford Lake. $60,000
CORNER 20 ACRES - 3 bedrooms, 2 bath, home with finished work shop in garage
plus 48x44 pole barn, Quality construction. $249,000
82.46 ACRES - Great hunting land not far from Hawkins, Barton Twp. Newaygo Co.
Nicely wooded and rolling. Shack sleeps 12. Buck Pole in place. $135,000

Jack Frizzell





MAY 1- JUNE 15
AUG. 15 TILL OCT. 30


Land Management and
Maintenance Also Available
Brokers and sales agents
welcomed and protected.

715 Finns Bay Road
Echo Bay, Ontario CAN

(705) 248-9663

(705) 248-1110

Frank Lajambe
*Prices subject to change.


FOR SALE: This four bedroom home is situated less than 30
miles from the US/Canadian border in a private country setting, in a quiet bay. The lot is 200x750. This property has
unequaled sunsets facing southwest with deep water for
pleasure craft boating on Lake Huron in the North Channel.
PRINCE PROPERTY: 287 acres of hardwood and softwood
forest with a creek flowing thru. Year-round access. Existing
windmill generates approx. $5,500/yr. Deer, Bear, and small
game on property. Located 30 minutes from the International
Bridge. $84,900
MACDONALD PROPERTY: 759 acres with hunting camp, 25
miles east of Sault St. Marie Ontario, property is gated, isolated and wooded, with a four bedroom, two-story pole barn.
20-acre lake and 2 streams. Great Bear Hunting! Two Deer
plots! Five deeds, no guide required, underpriced at $274,000.
($361 per acre) Terms available, excellent buy!
Large beaver pond and creek runs thru property, next to
above property if more acreage is required. Property is great
for bear hunting, white tail and grouse. Four miles off yearround maintained road. $124,900
HIGHWAY 17 EAST: Lighthouse Point serviced with hydro,
telephone, sewer, water, gas, cable on paved street. Airport,
marina and hospital in area. No time limit for building.
Waterfront lots 100 478 frontage, waterview lots 80 frontage. Prices from $15,900.00 and up.
REILLY PROPERTY: 2 - 80 acre parcels with beaver pond,
hardwood and softwood mixed forestland 30 minutes from
International Bridge. NORTH PROPERTY: Priced to sell at
$19,900.00 or $250 per acre. SOUTH PROPERTY: Priced to
sell at $15,900.00 or $186 per acre.
TWO 10 ACRE SAND BEACH LOTS (these lots have it all):
60 miles east of Sault Ste. Marie each lot has 300 frontage on
Bright Lake near highway 17 East (lake area approx. 24
square miles), year round access with power to property. This
inland lake has perch, bass, walleye and northern pike.
Priced to sell at $99,900.00 (lot #2) and $109,900.00 (lot #3).
LOG CABIN WITH LOFT AND 162 ACRES: Trails and tree
stands ready for the avid hunter or nature lover. Mixed hardwood and softwood bush with some water on the property and
a magnificent mountain scenic view of a large walleye and
pike lake awaiting the angler. Only 45 minutes from the
International Bridge. Asking price 138,900.
REMOTE 5 ACRES - Year-round access: with power and lake
frontage. $29,900
Other Properties
Available Upon Request.
Don't Be Shy, Make An Offer.
All Properties Must Be Sold!






WATERFALLS PROPERTY: 160 acre parcel 45 min from

International Bridge. Waterfalls & Brook Trout River running
across property. Rugged, well treed, hunting, and recreational property with government land on 2 sides. Only 1 mile
off a year round maintained road. This won't be on the market
for long so act now. Dont delay, asking $69,900.00 as is or
make an offer. Standing timber value is 25,000





Bringing people and places together since 1945






Fife Lake



Skidway Lake




Contact Your Nearest State Wide Real

Estate Office To Buy or Sell In Michigan
1100 W. Chisholm, 49707
989-356-2142 Fax: 989-356-2144

8383 Hwy. 451, 49743

856 W. Washington, 49855
906-228-9312 Fax: 906-228-8069

844 Van Dyke Road
810-798-8591 Fax: 810-798-8079

14938 State Street, P.O. Box 98, 49746
989-742-4523 800-228-7856
Fax: 989-742-3931

3631 10th Street, 49858
Fax: 906-863-7935

308 E. 5th Street, 48617
989-386-3396 Fax: 989-386-3800
Main Street, P.O. Box 305, 49820
906-586-9606 Fax: 906-586-9607

500 Shelden Ave., 49931
906-482-6955 800-676-6323
Fax: 906-482-7699
1285 S. Michigan Ave., Howell, MI 48843
517-546-9060 800-531-4449
Fax: 517-546-9148

2209 Ludington Street, 49829
112 S. Carpenter Ave., Kingsford, 49802
906-786-1308 800-900-0777
Fax: 906-786-1388
127 State Street, P.O. Box 190, 49633
231-879-4471 Fax: 231-879-4362

10 N. State Highway M-149
Cooks, MI 49817

430 S. US-23, 48740
989-724-5711 800-655-5735
Fax: 989-724-6833

1460 Marinette Ave., 54143
715-735-9964 Fax: 715-732-1107

102 West 8th St., P.O. Box 395, 48647
Fax: 989-826-2108
M-33 & M-68,
P.O. Box 478, 49765
Fax: 989-733-2427
W3776 US2 & 41, 49874
Fax: 906-497-5328
2228 Greenwood Rd.,
Prescott, 48756
Fax: 989-873-6914

- or -






240 ACRES,

House, Barns,
Pond, Stream,
Food Plots

12 Acre
Private Lake,
5,000 sq ft House


Allegan County, 59+/- Acres. Good Trail Arenac County, 146 Acres Rifle River &
System, Excellent Deer & Turkey Hunting Saginaw Bay Access, Tri-Level House

Delta County, 39.6 Acres

1,000+ ft Frontage Lake Michigan

Iosco County, 52.51 Acres

Food Plots, Trail System, Elevated
Blinds, Pond & Shed


Jackson County, 162 Acres CRP Program, 6 Elevated

Blinds, 115 Ac. Tillable, Pond, Big Buck Country

Lake Co, 75 Acres, Borders National

Forest, County Road Frontage


Missaukee County, 77 Acres, Rough

Country, Big Bucks, Trout Stream


Lake Co, 5 Acres, 1,200 ft. Middle Branch Lake County, 330 Acres, Good Trail Missaukee Co, 40 Acres, Good
Trail System, Excellent Hunting
Pere Marquette River, Rustic Cabin
System, Food Plots, Sm Creek



Missaukee County, 75 Acres Pond, Creek,

Guest Cabin & 2 Bedroom House

Jackson Co, 47 Acres,

2000 ft. Grand River Frontage,
2 bedroom Home, Pole Barn



Jackson County, 54+/- Acres, 2,000 ft

Grand River Frontage, Trail System

Isabella County, 156 acres

5,000 ft on Trout Stream, Good
Trails, 30 Ac Tillable


Missaukee County, 200 Acres,

Cabin, Pond, Trails & Blinds

Newaygo Co, 20 Acres

Log Home, Pond, Great Hunting,
Nice Woods

Newaygo County, 5+/- Acres

557 ft White River Frontage, 1/2
Open, 1/2 Wooded

Newaygo Co, 99 Acres,

Planted Pines, Great Cover,
County Road Frontage


Osceola County, 2+/- Acres

Newaygo County, 125 Acres, Three
105 ft Muskegon River, 3 Bed, 2 Bath spring fed lakes, Excellent Deer,
Home, Nice Wooded Lot
Turkey and Waterfowl hunting

Osceola County, 80 Acres

Lots of Deer, Excellent Bedding
Cover, Great Hunting

Osceola Co, 94+/- Acres, 1,000 ft.

All Sports Goose Lake, Older Farm
Presque Isle Co, 63+/- Ac
House, Excellent Hunting
Carp Creek, Food Plots, Hunting Blinds

Presque Isle County, 395 Acres $276,500

or can be purchased in split, 195 Acres
$137,000 or 200 Acres $140,000

Schoolcraft County,
2282 Acres Fox River Frontage









160 acre hunting camp, QDM is practiced here with food 40 partly wooded acres with 2 bdrm/2 bath home. 1200sf
plots, ponds, Kunze Creek and lots of mature cedar. The plus 770sf unfinished bsmt. Newer furnace and water
heater, heat w/propane or wood, 2 car garage, 24x42
turnkey camp has 1 bedroom and 1 full bath.
pole barn, garden shed.

Listed at $259,900.00

Listed at $209,000

AU GRES-$49,000, 21 acres of hunting land in agricultural area. Property is wooded with tall grasses and
good cover; lots of deer in the area. MLS#1809814
GREENBUSH - REDUCED TO $44,900, Nice square 40 acre parcel joining Federal and State land. This area has
proven to hold quality bucks over the past years, QDM is practiced here. MLS#1799955
GREENBUSH - $59,900, 45 acres of hunting land off the beaten path. This rolling parcel is heavily wooded with hardwoods and evergreens. Call today. MLS#1799569
GREENBUSH - $79,900, 50 acres of prime hunting land situated just north of Oscoda. Gated entrance to this park-like
setting wildlife sanctuary! Many trails for easy access, several additional cleared areas for camping, food plots or building sites.
There could be potential value in standing timber as well. Power and natural gas available at the road. MLS#1809059
MIKADO - $89,900, 61 acres of prime hunting land. Joins State land and agricultural land. Trails thru-out the heavily
wooded parcel with hardwoods and Tag Alders, and openings for food plots. MLS#1806759
EAST TAWAS - $125,000, 200 Of Lake Huron frontage accompanies this 9.87 acre parcel in AuSable Dunes Estates. Sandy beach frontage, partially wooded, some wetlands. MLS#1789219
AU GRES - $149,000, 71 acres of hunting land surrounded by other camps. Areas of thick swamp with some ridges and
road frontage with power. Lots of deer and turkey in this location. MLS#1809806
WHITTEMORE-$195,000, 120 acre hunting parcel. Diverse terrain with red oak, white oak, and red pine.
Numerous areas for food plots. Deer, turkey, partridge and other game are plentiful. MLS#1778247




701 W. Bay Street, East Tawas, MI 48730

Office (989)362-4400 Cell (989)370-2152


FROM $11,000 TO $575,000


3 Bdrm, 2.5 bth home/cottage. Unique Aframe

on private Lk, peaceful. Must see! Manistique.

2 Bdrms 2 Bth Escanaba River Retreat Custom

Home, garage, Cottage & 2 Acres. Cornell

2 Bdrm, 2 bth home. 252 Sturgeon River. 10

Acres. 30x40 Pole bldg. 3 Season Rm. St. Jacques.

$154,900 1083871

$199,500 1089107

$218,900 1089445

4 Bdrm, 2 bth home.

Lakefront property close to Fox Park.
Cedar River.

3 Bdrm, 2 bth overlooking Stevens Lake.

Pole Building. Wetmore.

1 Bdrm, 1 bth home. Near Fox Park. 200 Ft

on Lk Michigan. Cedar River.

$159,000 1093130

$239,900 1092875

$109,000 1093343

3 Bdrm, 3 bth home. 100 on Whitefish River.

Two car gar, deck, shed. Rapid River.

2 Bdrm, 1 bth log home. 2 Car log garage. 88 Acres

with State land nearby. Watson.

3 Bdrm, 1 bth home. 240 Acres. Built 2005.

1200 Sq. Ft., fireplace, gar, sauna, trails. Rock.

$135,000 1093061

$185,000 1089004

$399,000 1090655

2 Bdrm, 1 bth home or camp. 10 Acres, great country setting. 26x50 Pole bldg. All appliances. Arnold.

40 Acres and comfortable camp. Hardwood ridges

border Federal land. Co Rd access. Great hunting. Osier.

3 Bdrm, 1 bth camp. Affordable camp located on the

shores of Big Bay De Noc. Nahma.

$104,900 1090757

$59,500 1090852

$65,000 1091795




63 Acres, 2300 on White River and Classic Log Home

Rolling & wooded with the
river meandering along you
know that means paradise!
Hunt, fish and just love the
land! 3000sf beautifully
appointed home, 2 car
garage, 24x30 pole barn.
This is a complete package
and priced right!

Welcome to Camp Winnwood on the glorious Pine River!

Featuring a gorgeous, high
end quality perma-chink
custom log home with 3
bed/3.5 baths, stone
fireplace, wet bar, garage
and pole barn. The grounds
are impeccable & stunning,
the view of river breathtaking. Step into this world!



40 Acres with comfy home and barns

Excellence is in the Smallest Details

25 Acres on Little Manistee
River with custom Log Home is
a craftsman delight as
interior finishes seem like art
stained glass, Tulikivi stove
and hand crafted specialty
accents built in, 3 bed/2.5
baths. Fish this famous river
and hunt the wooded grounds
it borders on each side.

Great for mini farming

or riding facility. Ranch
home with geo thermal
heat, 40x36 arena
with stalls/tack room,
40x30 & 36x22 Barns,
rented mobile home
on site also. This
property is versatile
and priced right!


$625,000 LAKE COUNTY

80 Acres off the grid!

Lake Michigan Frontage well kept, remodeled year-round ranch home

The Arcadia Bluffs area
of Lake Michigan offer
some of the best Lake
Michigan experiences
in the state as the golf
and beach front life
are always an extreme

After a long captivating trail

in, this off the grid, vintage
fishing lodge is home to one
of the areas best sections of
Big Creek. Enjoy 3200, running corner to corner across
80 acres of land back
dropped by National Forest.
Woods, River & Lodge...the
perfect combo!



Hardwoods and pines,

gated entrance, carport
and small storage barn.
Home has 2 bed/1 bath
& knotty pine interior.
Just a great setting for
the nature enthusiast,
hunter and the relaxer!
Unique & inviting.

Property is wooded with

established blinds,
versatile terrain,
rolling hills, creek beds,
2-tracks and approx. 55
acres of quality AG land.




(877) 843-0910



4249 US 31 S
(231) 233-3575


160 Acres, small lake & ponds with charming 3 bedroom cottage 40 Acres teaming with wildlife with a not so rustic cabin!




M-33/M-55 OFFICE
1953 S. M-33
West Branch, MI 48661



3160 North M-65

Hale, MI48739

10 miles north of I-75 exit 202

Local: 989-345-2662
Toll Free: 800-535-6520



2575 S. I-75 Business Loop,

West Branch, MI 48661

Gateway to Huron National Forest

Local: 989-728-2540
Toll Free: 800-495-2540

1 mile north of I-75 Exit 212

Local: 989-345-0315
Toll Free: 866-345-0315












Quaint 2-bdrm home, freshly painted, on

no motor lake, 8.8 acre lake with some appliances and furnishings, nice deck, great
views and storage shed.

3-bdrm full log home with wood floors,

open floor plan, beamed ceilings, garage, covered porch, on 1.7 ACRES
w/232 frontage on Silver Creek!

2-bdrm cabin on 172 acre lake, newer

roof, flooring and water heater, freshly
painted, family room, beautiful views,
rear deck and boat dock!!

Mostly furnished 2-bdrm home with

brick FP, formal and casual dining, large
garage, guest bunkhouse covered porch
and riverside deck with gorgeous views!

Spacious and well-maintained 4-bdrm home

on canal to Feeding Grounds Lake, with FP,
garage, shed, master suite, fantastic views
and on 3.93 ACRES!!
















171 of water frontage on all sports lake, great

subd, 3-bdrm home w/lots of windows, garage,
finished walkout basement, FP, and extensive
decking w/ fabulous views!

Spacious 4-bdrm on 3.88 ACRES, just

steps from fishing with family room, FP, AC,
hardwood floors, large garage, screened
porch, nice deck and beautiful views!

55 feet of frontage on 785 acre lake, 2-bdrm,

full basement, appliances, enclosed porch,
beautiful views, sandy frontage, great swimming & boating!

Over 13 ACRES with nice 2-bdrm home and

285 feet of frontage on Wallin Lake, gorgeous setting & views, garage & polebarn &
lakeside deck!!

Nice 2-bdrm on part bsmt w/attached garage on

all sports lake w/FP, remodeled bath, boat shed,
furnishings and fantastic sunsets!!














330 ACRE


Nice 2-bdrm getaway cabin or cozy year

round home w/60 on 785 acre, all sports
lake! Knotty pine, FP, encl porch, deck,
updates & more!!

Beautiful 3-bdrm custom built chalet, on

all sports George Lake, move-in ready,
open floor plan, AC, lakeside deck, boat
dock, furnishings & guest cabin!!

3-bdrm ranch-style in great shape, garage,

master suite w/jet tub, wrap-around deck an
ACRE of property and pond, on channel to
all sports Elbow Lake!!

Nice 2-bdrm home, full basement, private

lake, open floor plan, fantastic views, perfect year round, garage, blacktop drive an
178 water frontage!!

Spacious 4-bdrm, beautiful views from every

room, full walkout basement, garage, blacktop drive, nice deck, covered patio, boat
dock & more!!












Spacious 4-bdrm on W LONDO LAKE,

on deep lot w/fruit trees, garage, workshop and both lower and upper decks
with beautiful views!!


123 of lake frontage on all sports lake

w/2 bdrm home. Open floor lan, FP, 2
full ba, family room, full walkout bsmt,
garage, wrap-around deck & some furnishings!!






68+ feet of frontage, all sports Lake Ogemaw, 3-bdrm, 4 ba, full walkout bsmt, garage, some furnishings, AC, FP, lakeside
patio, 2 docks and so much more!

Custom built 3-bdrm home w/exception

qualities, views inside and out, wood floors,
FP, master suite, 8.8 ACRES, beautiful views
and 1170 on Au Gres River!!

10+ BEAUTIFUL ACRES and 369 water frontage on Silver Lake, 4-bdrm, FP, skylights,
custom cabinets, family room, garage, 2 pole
barns, gorgeous views!





Cozy 2-bdrm home with wood burning FP needs
some updates and TLC and would make a fantastic weekend getaway or hunt camp!!







1.5 ACRES!!


3-bdrm ranch style on 2 lots, near lakes and

State land, spacious deck for enjoying the
outdoors, 2 full baths, mudroom and more!!
LC Terms!!

Full remodeled 2-bdrm cottage near Huron Natl Forest, lakes and trails! Mostly
furnished and has lots of other household
items for immediate use!!

Nice 2-bdrm w/trails to Silver Creek, large garage & lean to, steel roof and great area near
many lakes and State land for the hunter. Motivated Seller!!

2-bdrm home on over 2 ACRES! Knotty

pine, family room, some furnishings,
encl porch & more! Newer well, septic,
siding & windows!
















3-bdrm home sits on 2 lots & has 2 addl lots

across road, nice deck, garage, workshop
& more! Near State land, lakes & the gorgeous Rifle River!!

Nice 3-bdrm on large lot w/several shade trees, updated over last 5 years, FP, balcony and front deck for
relaxing. Near hunting and trails!!

Newly remodeled 3-bdrm, over a half

acre, near public lake access and boat
ramp, newer roof and windows. Great
place to call your home away from home!!

2, possible 3, bdrm home with detached

garage. Close to lakes for boating, fishing
swimming and the gorgeous Rifle River
for excellent canoeing!

Cozy home with shed for storage in great

recreational area for year round fun! Also
not far from lakes for fishing & swimming!!












Use your smart phone and a QR Code
Reader App to see all of our listings

795 N 1st St
P.O. Box 499
Harrison MI 48625


229 Lake George Ave
Lake George, MI 48633





Open 7 Days * Established in 1953
7795 Clare Avenue Golf course
operation and lounge with all bar
license and pro shop Oldest course in
Clare County, $1,600,000

on Tittabawassee River near Gladwin. On 35

Acres, Restaurant/Lounge, Motel Suites, Log
Cabins, River Cabins w/Jacuzzis.

Asking only $2.2m

Indoor Heated Pool w/Jacuzzi, Banquet
Hall, Equestrian Riding Arena. More acreage
available and possible Hunting Lodge.

CONTACT JAY 586-484-1120 OR ROBERT 586-246-6100

Trail Secluded 2723 Clareola 30x40 garage, pond 22.1 Acres Temple rolling wooded
building lot or just hang out up north. and wildlife galore on 68.29 acres parcel is located on a winding country
Just over one acre of wooded with mature standing pines, well & paved road in a desirable location near
property. 3 corner lots $5,500
septic (cond unkn) $125,000
town. $70,000
For photos Text P664628 to 85377
For photos Text: P756223 To: 85377 For photos Text P115350 to 85377

Lot 6 Canal Long Lake vacant Lot 92 Athey Avenue Secluded, 50 acres Stockwell Building site with
wooded lot 50' sand bottom frontage level, wooded building site on 1.65 maximum seclusion. Nicely wooded
at S end of lake, . $30,000
acres. Access to 1100 Acre Birch Hills parcel not far from town. $69,900
For photos Text: P876737 To: 85377 Sportsmans Club. $14,900
For photos Text: T647076 To: 85377
For photos Text: T101116 To: 85377

1320 ft X 3960 ft. Asking $500,000. Call Sharon
@ 810-441-6002 or 810-798-8591


near 5371 Bringold Avenue 80 acres 100-02 Grant Avenue 1 acre corner 9075 Clare Avenue Hunt and fish in
sure to please the hunter. Mature trees, lot near Budd Lake boat launch, clear your own back yard. Bring the toys,
plenty of game, adjoins state land. and build a home with lake views. electric, well, septic on 19 +/- wooded
acres $57,000
For photos Text P765372 to 85377 For Photos Text P524989 To 85377
For photos Text P741068 to 85377


Sharon LaFrance
Im not #1, you are.

844 Van Dyke ALMONT







Queen Log Bed $19999

Queen Size Log Headboard



5 Drawer Chest Only



4 Drawer Chest


2 Drawer Night Stand



Finished Cedar Log Bed



BUNK BEDS Solid Wood Complete with Mattresses $29999

Rocker Recliners


Rustic End Tables








starting at



Not Included


Let's Go Fishing!


2016 Sweetwater 2086 BF

40hp Yamaha, Free Trailer with all In-stock Purchases

2016 Polar Kraft 179 WT

Yamaha With

*plus tax, title & freight



Payments $
as low as...

per month

21,995 $179

Yamaha With



2016 Polar Kraft 166 WT


Payments $
as low as...

*plus tax, title & freight

per month


Polar Kraft 186 CC

Yamaha 90hp
4-Stroke With

as low as...

*plus tax, title & freight

per month



Payments $
as low as...


per month

Chene Anchor

Holding Power
Retrievability Durability

201 Industrial Way, Fenton, MI

available at...




Visit us at for a complete listing of boats!


Service Department Indoor & Outdoor Storage

(810) 629-2291

Exit 84 on US-23





3241 Thompson Rd.

Fenton, MI 48430

Mon.-Fri. 9am - 6pm
Sat. 9am - 5pm
Sun. 12noon - 5pm




w w w. f r e e w a y - s p o r t s . c o m


Fat y

31516 Harper Avenue

St. Clair Shores, MI 48082

Phone (586) 296-2360

Fax (586) 264-8307

Mon. - Fri: 10am-7pm;
Sat: 10am-4pm; Closed Sunday

Available at:

Layaways Welcome