Manistee River Fishing Report: May 2016

Larry Raney

T here are a variety of things to do on the Manistee River in May. As we begin the month, we are still fishing for steelhead. The way the winter held on this year, I’m sure the steelhead fishing will be good through the middle of the month. We do mix it up a bit at the first part of the month finding some steelhead and trout in the same day. It’s a cool way to keep you on your toes all day, and what’s not to like about that?

As the water temperature start to climb near the middle of the month, trout fishing becomes the thing to do. The trout have been feeding on steelhead eggs for a month or so and are out on the prowl. Typically this time of the year we fish streamers on 6 or 7 weight fly rods or cast crankbaits or little spinners with spinning gear. Makes for a very visual and exciting way to catch a trout. Anglers can catch some of the biggest trout of the year with these techniques, and with a few steelhead around, sometimes you find yourself a little bonus.

As the end of the month nears, we start getting the first of our bug hatches to add to the fun. There is a lot to do in May, whether it be hunting down the last few steelhead of the season, or catching your first brown trout of the year. It can all be done on the same day on most of our rivers here in Northern Michigan. So come on out and enjoy a day on the Big Manistee and see what it’s all about!