Whew! It is Hot. It is hard to imagine last winters temperatures of -20 F when we are suffering through 90sF today. Trout also suffer. When water temperatures rise above 70F the trout stop feeding. Heat stress is dangerous to all living things. Even if you can get a trout to bite in the early morning or late evening the stress can be deadly for them. If you read our weather reports we can save you an unproductive trip to a river. When it is this hot the trout are not active. They are laying in a spring feed hole or by a spring feed stream coming into the river.
You might consider an evening on a small calm lake fly fishing for small and large mouth bass, northern pike, or bluegills. These fish thrive in warmer and less oxygenated water. Sitting in a canoe at sunset is relaxing. I have caught a gross of fish this way and immensely enjoyed it. Look for a calm, flat and windless evening. Use water spiders, hares ears, or poppers and get ready for some fun. Bluegill rise to the surface, smudging for bugs. They are easy to target and that occasional bass will surprise you. A big bass will also help you hone that fly rod technique of fighting a fish that can over power your equipment. Not often do you get the chance to fight a big trout. It takes tricky rod maneuvers to land a large fish on a fly rod.
The weatherman is predicting cooler temperatures by the end of the week that will give us good river fishing again. A thunder storm is rolling in now and we are to have them coming in over the next couple of days. The Pigeon, Sturgeon, Black and Maple rivers are all in good shape with water levels (just a little low), but the Pigeon at the north entrance to the Pigeon River Forest Country and the Sturgeon at Wolverine are a torrid 75 F. The Black river is clear and water levels are good but the water temperature is too warm until Saturday. The Maple has been in the upper 60's to low 70's so the early morning and evening fishing can happen but don't expect a lot of activity. The summer dry season is here for the next 4 to 5 weeks. We have a very welcomed cooling spell coming in this weekend and will stay the week for the most part. Any precipitation is welcome, preferable every 5 days or so. Ride out this couple day heat wave on a small lake and you will get hooked, no pun intended!...well may be.
Richard and Jim
Letting you know current conditions and best approaches.