July is looking to be off to another cold start in Ludington just like last year. We still have scattered fish and cold water. We do have one great thing though. Bait! Near the end of the month, we hope to have a thermal-cline set up to concentrate fish in layers beneath the surface. We have had mixed catches so far this year since mid-May of kings, lake trout, and steelhead. Our types of fish are scattered, and we have been setting a multi-species spread to match it. On a normal year, this is in June. Mid-July on should be prime time for adult kings.
A multi-species spread consists of many types of baits set at a variety of depths. Starting at the outside inline boards we are running 1-3 colors of leadcore line with orange spoons for steelhead, inside that the mid range leadcores 5-10 colors with green glow spoons. This mid-depth has not been as important so far, but will improve as the month goes on. 300-450 foot copper lines have been producing kings daily and seem to be the top producers. At first and last light wire divers and spin doctors with flies and meat rigs have been the way to go. Our downriggers are not producing that many kings yet, so we have been running dodgers and spin and glows near or on the bottom to complete the multi-species spread to include lake trout. The DNR changed our lake trout limit to 15” this year.
Keep an open mind and think of the variety of fish our port offers. The multi-species spread is a good start and if you run across one type of fish more than another add some more rods out to target them.