08-08-2019 Outdoors

Fishing The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) reports that state wide the windy conditions last week made big water fishing a little more difficult, plus warmer water temperatures in many parts slowed activity down. But anglers were still catching fish with chinook, lake trout, smallmouth bass and walleye being the more active species. Captain Kenny Bard of Rampage Fishing Charters out of South Haven reports as of Monday the perch are back to biting good. They are being caught south of the piers in 30 to 35 feet of water. Fishing Lake Michigan has improved, with plenty of lake trout on the bottom in 80 to 150 feet with king salmon just starting by South Haven in the water column at 100 to 120 feet. A nice 28-pound king was caught on Monday. Pier fishing is slow for steelhead, but anglers are catching some catfish and freshwater drum. Inland lakes are producing panfish. Duck Lake was producing some nice bluegills in 12 to 20 feet of water. Smallmouth bass are being caught on the Kalamazoo River. Ellinee Bait & Tackle on Paw Paw Lake located by Coloma reports panfishing has been going well with mostly bluegills, a few crappie and sunfish. Inland lakes that are accessible because of the high water in the area are also doing well, such as Lake of the Woods and School Section Lake. Bass fishing has slowed some. St. Joseph anglers found that although perch were scattered, fishing was pretty good south of the pier in 35 feet of water. Those fishing the piers caught lots of catfish and a few steelheads. Boat anglers out on Lake Michigan found lake trout at 120 feet. Boat anglers out of Grand Haven were starting to see an increase in salmon numbers with the best action found 40 to 120 feet down in 110 to 180 feet of water. Glow spoons worked well, along with green or blue meat rigs. Lake trout were caught off the bottom with yellow spin-glo. Pier anglers were catching largemouth bass on worms and gobies. Steelhead action slowed due to the warmer water temperatures. The Bays de Noc recently received a much-needed boost with the 464,800 walleye fingerlings, through collaborative stocking efforts by the DNR, the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians and the Bay de Noc Great Lakes Sport Fishermen. For more information on where and when walleye fingerlings were stocked, go to MichiganDNR.com/ FishStock. Michigan is one step closer to bringing Arctic Grayling back to state waters. The ultraviolet water disinfection system at Oden State Fish Hatchery in Emmet County has been installed, meaning the facility is ready to welcome juvenile Arctic Grayling. The Arctic Grayling will arrive at Oden State Fish Hatchery in early August. These fish were collected as eggs in Alaska in May and have been housed at Michigan State University since their arrival in the state. This is the first in a series of fish that will make up the founding broodstock for the Arctic Grayling effort. Learn more about the initiative at MiGrayling.org or contact Ed Eisch, 231-922-6056 or Elyse Walter, 517-284-5839. Hunting Join the DNR Outdoor Skills Academy and Killer Food Plots for Hunting Whitetails Naturally. This is a class on how to trail-hunt whitetail deer and better manage your property for wildlife habitat. The classes will be held on Sunday, August 18 in Cadillac, Saturday, August 24 in Cadillac, and Sunday, August 25 in Bay City. Cost is $25, which includes lunch; registration is required. The class runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. You will learn the skills needed to successfully transition from bait-hunting, which is no longer allowed in the Lower Peninsula under regulations aimed at slowing the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease, to trail-hunting whitetails. You will also learn what is known about CWD and the risks associated with disease transmission. The class will cover where to find good places to hunt using maps online, gear you will need, and a little on laws and regulations. It will include time in the field demonstrating where and how to set up and how to use scents and deer sign, such as scrapes, rubs, and tracks, to improve your chances of bagging a whitetail. Learn more at Michigan.gov/OutdoorSkills. Waterfowl reserved hunt applications are available now through Wednesday, August 28. Applications are $5 and hunters may only apply once. You can apply on line and drawing results will be posted on September 16. For more information visit Michigan.gov/Waterfowl. The DNR announced the winners of the Consumer’s Energy-sponsored Explore MI Wetland Wonders contest. All four winners will receive Cabela’s gift cards. Grand prize winner, Donna Braam of Hudsonville won $1,000. Second prize winner Lori Schneider of West Olive received $750. Third prize winner, Jonna Savage of Grand Rapids won $500. And fourth prize winner, Cynthia Vaughn of Interlochen received a prize of $250. To be entered in the drawing, participants had to visit at least one of Michigan’s 15 Wetland Wonders and then email a selfie taken next to an official contest sign.

Watervliet Rod & Gun Club

The Watervliet Rod and Gun Club will hold their monthly CCW classes on August 15 and 18, 2019. Registration is on August 13, 2019, between 6 and 7 p.m. and cost of the class is $100. They will have a lawyer explaining the law pertaining to concealed carry during class. Please call (269) 468-3837 or (269) 470-9191 for more information.

DNR opens Heritage Trail on Kal-Haven Trail

The Kal-Haven Trail is a 34-mile former railroad corridor running from Kalamazoo to South Haven updated in 1989 as a State Park for hiking and outdoor activities. Just installed this summer, hikers will find, spread across the corridor, 31 history panels telling both the trail’s and the region’s story. The history panels comprise the Heritage Trail and are the Department of Natural Resource’s first in the state. “There will be many more,”