FishingEarly Fishing Season
The upper bay offers many different types of fishing. Early in the season (starting May 15), walleyes can be caught around the mouths of the rivers emptying into Little Bay de Noc. These rivers are the Whitefish, the Tacoosh, the Escanaba and the Days. The best baits include crawler harnesses, jigs, Lindy® rigs, and body baits such as Rapalas®, Thundersticks®, or Hot ‘n’ Tots®.
This early season offers the fisherman casting opportunities. Some of the best fishing takes place in very shallow water, 5 feet or less. Shad Raps work very well. The early season usually lasts about a month or until the alewives enter the bay. Northern pike can also be caught in these same areas. Use the same baits for them too. If you are a crappie fisherman, large fish can be caught around the shallow water around the Rapid River site. Tiny jigs and wax worms are a good choice.
Most walleye are caught in the shallower waters during this early season. Deeper waters in the center of the bay can also hold large fish. (18-25 feet of water) Deeper water fish can be caught around the first reef, second reef, and the center reef. These areas are located just north of the Kipling site. (These waters are also outstanding during the fall fishing season.)
In the past few years, outstanding fishing is had during night time hours. One thing to to remember is MAKE SURE YOUR LIGHTS WORK before you go out. By law, you must have working navigational lights on your boat and use them after dusk.
The waters off the Ford River also present excellent fishing excitement early in the season. The same baits work well here. In the lower bay, fishing seems to be better in the middle of the summer and into the fall. Generally, the fish are a little deeper, however, shallows can be very productive. These areas include Black Bottom east of the Terrace Bay Inn and in the Escanaba River.
If you fish the Escanaba River, a small launch ramp is located about a half mile up river from the mouth. Great care should be taken if you launch here. Logs and pilings lie just under the surface of the water. Ask someone where the channel is. Crawlers and Rapalas® work very well in these areas.