: Muskegon River Reg Changes
01-21-2003, 12:09 PM
Just so everyone knows. There is a new proposed change in Trout regs on the Muskegon. The proposal includes changing the kill size from over 15" to any fish 10" and over from Thornapple downstream to the lake. This is based on a handfull of electroshocking studies done in a section of river that isn't even in the proposed change zone(Pine to Thornapple) over a period of three months. Basically they didn't zap any large fish and so they decided that they didn't exist throughout the entire river.
The DNR is holding a public meeting on the topic. The meeting date is JANUARY 27th AT 7PM at the NEWAYGO SPORTSMAN'S CLUB. If you are close enough to do it please show up and voice your concern!
01-21-2003, 12:58 PM
Thanks but for the record Old PMFLYFISHER has not killed a trout or salmon in 15 years and thats the way it is going to stay the remainder of my fly fishing days. :D
Maybe I should change my user name to NOKILLPM or something like that.
P.S. Let me know when you get the heaters in the DB:chuckle:
01-21-2003, 02:10 PM
No heaters yet.:) I am conserving in an effort to maximize my options for the new reel. They are on my list for next year though.:smokin:
I haven't killed a trout in Michigan in many years myself. Bonked one last year on my survival expedition on the Smith, but, tough times call for tough actions.......:rolleyes:
The problem with the reg changes is they are going from managing the resource as trophey water (kind of) to put and take based on some shocking data that is shotty...at best. It's bad news for conservation minded anglers.
01-21-2003, 02:32 PM
Keep us updated on reg. changes in our beloved Michigan blue ribbon waters. Any more fly fishing only and/orno kill sections being added / What is now 220+ mile of blue ribbon fly fishing only river miles in Michigan ?
Great Lakes, Great Times
I remember how cold my friends 16 foot metal vhull was on the St Joe during winter steelheading, and I was 20 years longer than. Wow was that cold.
Used to fish The Mo a lot but then in fell in love with waters north of there. Caught my first silver king in the MO, can still remember when he launched out of the water in front of me and then the chase downstream.
If I went winter steelheading now in this cold, I would have to make sure who ever I was with knows CPR! :whoa:
01-21-2003, 03:51 PM
But 20 years ago we did not have polar fleece, goretex (Affordable gortex) thinsulate capilenne etc.
If you layer properly and avoid th ewind (nice thing about rivers). A 20d day can be down right plesant. Especially with Steel to be had. We gotta get you out of that office more.
01-21-2003, 06:26 PM
I have been wearing capilene since the late 1980s I think maybe early 90s.
I wish I could find a Goretex hat like I had in the early 1980s. It was my steelheading hat and then fell apart after 10-12 years of use.
Now have a camoflauge one but I don't think it is as good as the one I had previously.
Don't worry I can take the cold, 4 years in cold USAF flight lines, ten years of down hill and cross country skiing, and I was wellprepared for GL winter steelheading.
Just getting older now and the body is not like it used to be.
01-21-2003, 08:00 PM
Don't let age be your enemy. Invest in HGH it works wonders.
The stuff that was around in 1980 was expensive and no where near as good as todays gear. I worked outside back then, a gortex coat was un heard of unless you had $$$ to drop on it. Wool was the way to go and some of the early synthetics, doufold made one that was blended with wool, capielline was a product of the Polar fleece revolution of the 90's. The stuff back then was crap.
01-22-2003, 12:45 AM
Hal, I'm not sure about this years changes. Other than the one listed. Last year they made a couple swaps...the took F.O.N.K. off a couple southern streams and disignated a couple northern streams as such. One of which being the upper man. It was a good move.
I like capilene, but, I also like wool for some things. Like socks. Smartwools are the s--t!
Hey...did you check out the Slovenian Scud in Fish and Fly this quarter? Woah!:whoa: Very cool looking bug. The recipe is not given though. I guess you have to go to Slovenia to get one.:mad: Been playin around with it...I'll break the code!:devil:
01-22-2003, 10:26 AM
Are you saying you do not like the Smartwool socks ?
Yes I have that article and the Czech nymph system. I may be able to get some of the nymphs through my international friends in Switzerland.
Start checking Slovenia fly fishing web sites if there are any ?
I got some new nymph patterns from some PNW sources that look very promising for michigan steelhead, I am keeping them on the QT though until I sufficiently field test in 2003. Like to be a year or so ahead of my competition on the water. :devil:
01-22-2003, 11:19 AM
No, no, no I'm saying they are THE S***T! As in, the best, or the greatest, or the bomb (well, you might not get that one)....I love em. Can't have enough pairs. I was doing the liner thing with other brands then I made the switch a little over a year ago and it has made a world of difference.
01-22-2003, 12:59 PM
Smartwools are ok have two pairs myself, but patagonia expedition weights with a liner are (IMO) the tops.
Feet never were so warm and dry.
01-22-2003, 07:50 PM
Its so cold now, I just put my Smartwools on in the house.
They are nice and comfortable I must say.
Perhaps Patagonia is better but just remember you are paying an extra 30% just for the name. All of there stuff is overpriced, its good, but its overpriced.
01-22-2003, 07:59 PM
Socks were the same price as the smart wools. I just doubled checked, Simms smartwool $19.95, Patagonia Heavy Capeline $19.00. Simms gear ain't cheap dude, ever price their gore tex jacket???
Simms has the tops wader no doubt but underwear and socks etc Patagonia beats them hands down.
01-22-2003, 09:01 PM
I don't have the Simms Smartwool but another type bought at Galyans for $15 I think. A matter of fact I don't have anything from Simms. They are way over priced too. Will check out the Patagonia socks, have a fetish for good socks, just like the goretex and thinsulate hats! :hehe:
01-22-2003, 09:17 PM
The smartwools I have were sold by Simms. Orvis in the city sell shteirs for $21.00. Maybe price went up, Pat stuff is made with us in mind, only on eissue no talls. I swear by their socks and long johns. They are the bomb none better. I have one of their fireball jackets(cost me $65.00), that bloody thing is warmer than my best thinsulate coat.
01-22-2003, 10:17 PM
Expedition Weight Capilene= Good
Retro X Jacket w/ windstopper= The best/warmest layer EVER!!!
Call me a victim of advertising, but, I like the Orvis pro-guide waders. I went budget brand on Neo's...Gander Mountain. Only cause I can't friggin stand wearing neos and I only will wear them if I absolutely have to.
01-23-2003, 06:34 AM
Too bad Patagonia does not make big boy sizes. Some stuff fits some does not.
Check out the new Simms g3's, like Cartman says Sweeet. A bit pricy, but you can get 4-5 years use out of them. My old Simms are on their 5th year and still strong.
01-23-2003, 09:11 AM
My wardells neopremes have 10 years of use, now a backup. use. Great product I bought in Vancouver, BC for something like 120-140 US $$. You don't see many people with them in the states. I don't know how the quality of them are since they merged with Springbrook, but would definitely consider them again. Problem is no one in Chicago carrys them so you have to order them over the net from the pictures.
Maybe our canadian colleagues can comment on Spring Brook Wardell wader quality these days ?
01-23-2003, 09:20 PM
Best neos I ever had were custom ones made by Trek(long out of business) my last pair lasted 6 years of heavy use.
01-23-2003, 09:38 PM
The local shop has waders under the Wardell label again.
My Springbrook 5mm have lasted pretty good considering the Niagara abuse they've received.
01-29-2003, 04:13 PM
What happened at the meeting with the DNR and conservations groups, guides, etc .on the 27th (I think) at the Newaygo Sportsmen Club this week ?
I heard some things through some other sources but want the inside information.
Sounded like they were going to change the regulations on the Mo from what I heard for trout again. Lots of trout in there but few over 15 inches I heard.
01-29-2003, 09:14 PM
I had a looooooong response all written out for you earlier this afternoon and decided it was in the best interest of the forum to rewrite it when I had cooled down a bit more. (Yes, the filter in the brain that decides between CAN and SHOULD does exist) So here goes.
The meeting consisted of a presentation of some of the research that the MDNR did over the course of the last 3 years. Included was some info on angler usage of the resource, some electro shocking data and the latest creel census. The meeting then was opened up to questions for a short while and finally a opportunity for people to voice their opinions.
My unbiased take on it is that the MDNR was looking for a way to cover their butts down the road after they changed the river's designation to that of a "type 4 river" aka a put and take fishery. The change will happen regardless of anyone else's opinions.
My (carfully worded) biased opinion is that it is unfortunate that the MDNR chooses to rely on questionable research and incomplete creel census data to form an opinion of the fishery. The majority of mortality/water tempreture information was formed over the last two summers which, as it turns out, happen to be the warmest two summers in a century or more. I would have liked to have seen them conduct more research and fill in the gaps before they make such a drastic change to an absolutly wonderful fishery.
I also think it is shamfully ironic that our state can hold such a strong history in fishery conservation, being the birthplace of TU, and at the same time make these types of decisions regarding the Muskegon.
As for "Lots of trout in there but few over 15 inches"....All I can do is extend the invitation to SHOW you first hand. Large trout do live in that river. Come on up man. I think you'll be pleasently surprised.
Attaching a few pics of "Non-existant" Muskegon river trout. Rainbows from last fall and browns from this winter. Just what I had laying around. If I really dug I could knock your socks off.
01-29-2003, 10:51 PM
It is not suprising that they (MDNR) did that. There are more casual fisherman then dedicated ones. It is hard to please everybody.
Better to piss off the minority instead of the majority.
Enjoy what we have, 10 years from now it will be different.
01-30-2003, 09:36 AM
Yes I believe there is a good population of trout over 15 inches in The MO. Now all of the bait slingers will be in there taking their limits of 10 inch trout. You will have more people on the river.
Yes I have learned when you are emotionally charged to refrain from responding immediatedly if you can, like writing an emotional email.
No sections of The MO are fly fishing only, unlike most of the other major blue ribbon trout rivers in Michigan which does not seem right.
I guess I am biased though being bred on fly fishing no kill water since 1966 on the Beaverkill and Willowemuc back east in NYS Catskills.
P.S. How is the Sculpin pattern prototye coming ?
01-30-2003, 12:18 PM
I think the Mo' gets too warm in the summer to justify that.
You also need to open the river to all people, they help pay for all the things we enjoy. I also read somewhere that a state can only restrict so many river miles. Once you use it up you get no more.
They have to be picky.
01-30-2003, 12:49 PM
"I also read somewhere that a state can only restrict so many river miles. Once you use it up you get no more."
Used to be that way, till they designated more miles last year. They still haven't decided if/how they will use it.
I would agree that the water needs to be opened to all anglers. It brings in a lot of angler $ each year. A designated single barbless hook/no kill section would be a good route though. It is more about fish mortality than elitism.
The average summer temp on the Mo is all over the chart. If you take it in the very top of the water column in the middle of the river you'll get very warm readings. If you take it at the bottom and downstream of a spring you'll get cold readings. Sometimes a difference of 15 degrees or more. They can and do survive Michigan summers. The biggest problem is the Zebra Mussels(spl?). They create a whole new set of issues that need to be dealt with at some point. You also have the issue of Croton Dam and the top water draw. It endless, we could go on and on and on. The bottom line is that the DNR doesn't want to put the $ and resources into the river to manage it for cold/cool water so they are justifying it to the public. So we'll end up with a walleye farm and a put and take coldwater fishery and we'll be saying "remember when...." down the road.
PS As for the Sculpin....I'll take the 5th.:devil:
01-30-2003, 01:18 PM
Well at least there may be less fisherman on my other favorite rivers up there. More GR area anglers may now stop at The Mo than going further north.
Too bad Croton is not a bottom draw dam. That tail water fishing could be awesome.
01-30-2003, 02:22 PM
If Croton were a bottom draw imagine how they would treat the resource.
When they put these dams in they never thought about the fish only man. Not so sure what we could change or if it is worth changing, The environment around us gets influenced by every forgien that enters it. Zebra's, lampreys, alewives(if not for them we would be striper fisherman) etc.
The real key to changing or trying to change these things is education. Educate the snaggers kids and the snagger, the take it all home fisherman.
The dnr and mother nature stocks little fish, only we can stock big fish via C&R.
02-02-2003, 08:51 AM
Wheres Lipripper (John) ?
I bet he is floating the MO today with the ice breaker kit on the front of the DB. Getting his licks in on the steelhead and trout before the reg changes and the bait slingers are in there with there scented cheese balls and power baits taking their limits.
We feel your pain Lipripper, will have to get up there this year for a drift of the MO have not done that one in quite a while.
02-02-2003, 02:35 PM
Article on the proposed The MO regulation change issue:
02-02-2003, 03:54 PM
No real way to get around it, just keep in your mind that all the yelllow rod toting Opies paid for the right to eat every thing they catch.
I fully expect the pollutants in these fish to take a toll on them.:devil:
02-03-2003, 01:37 PM
Yes, I'm still around. And yes, I have been angling. It's been pretty slow due to the cold snap. (I think) Yesterday was the warmest it's been in a while, but, still not too much activity. We would have cannonballed if it wasn't for my buddy saving the day with a beasty 12"er.:hehe:
Still good to get out and throw a line. I can't stand cabin fever. You can only tie so many flies and catch up on gear maintinence for so long before you just gotta go fish.
I read the GR Press article too. I thought it was well written and a good account of the situation. Especially the "Anything less would be scientifically laughable." part.
I have said it before and MJ has said it too. The only thing that we can do is educate people on the benefits of a quality fishery. What is really disturbing is at the meeting the MDNR said they were thinking about opening up the brown season at the end of october so people could harvest the lake runs and eat em.:(
02-03-2003, 02:02 PM
What ! Thats very disturbing about opening the trout season beyond the Sept 30th state wide closure just for lake run browns.
Where can I send an email of protest to ?
02-03-2003, 02:57 PM
Those Lake run pigs are loaded with bad stuff. They will take their toll on any one fool enough to eat them.
Perhaps a compromise would be in oreder, let them keep 1 or 2 fish a day no more no less. It is a far side better than 5.
I was suprised by the amout of Mi. and Ind. guys who keep and eat them. Never would have figured it was that many.
02-03-2003, 05:01 PM
Rick Oneil is the Muskegon River Biologist for the MDNR. I would direct your comments to him. They dropped it in as kind of a side note at the beginning of the meeting and everyone was kinda like "Huh?" "Did he just say that?"
I think their next move is to make eveyone fish with cane poles and corn. We got us a real good trout pond up here in Michigan!!! All the 10" trout it'll take to fill yer belly!
02-03-2003, 05:42 PM
I have not eaten a great lakes fish since 1984.
02-03-2003, 07:39 PM
The only two great lakes (Lake Michigan) fish I have ever eaten and would today is smelt and perch. Both very tasty fare especially chased with a good brew or two.
02-03-2003, 11:14 PM
Stream resident trout are OK, but I am too lazy to keep, clean, and cook them, etc.. So they all go back.
02-04-2003, 04:32 AM
Nothing tops a perch or walleye.
02-04-2003, 11:55 AM
How many MO steelhead smolts will be killed by the increased bait flingers ? How depressing. :mad:
02-04-2003, 12:01 PM
Probably not as many compared to the bloody commorants.
You have to figure PNW fish get preyed upon by otters, eagles, and seals not to mention bigger fish. The also get commercially fished(we don't have that issue) so it may all even out.
Not much to do about it, wish it would change but people pay for that right. Perhaps a barbless hook reg. may help.
This just gets into more and more regulations which are useless if not enforced.
Best option educate them and you will have a smarter and more concerned fisherman.
02-04-2003, 03:23 PM
I posed the smolt question to the MDNR. The response I got is that the smolts are gone when they hit 8". Here is what I found interesting. They didn't argue the point that the river produces smolts....naturally. So we have a population of naturally reproducing steelhead in the Mo now eh? They didn't deny it in a letter that I have. Too warm for trout....but, not too warm for Juevenille steelhead? Hmmm.....
MJ's is right too. Those poor souls get POUNDED by commorants at the mouths. Heck you should see all the Eagles and Osprey on the Mo. How about the biggest smolt killer though......Mommy and Daddy!
02-04-2003, 05:06 PM
I had always thought the MO had wild steelhead. Wild smolts stay in the river two years at least so the bait flingers will have their day with deep gutted fish. Makes me sick to think about it further.
02-04-2003, 07:16 PM
The same thing happens in the PM, Big and little Man, Betsie etc.
It happens, one plus is that it has been happening for a long time. Guess what? We still have good returns of fish to enjoy.
Fish that survive to adult hood are special fish, strong and wary. It's all part of the learning curve.
I don't hold nothing against bait guys, they paid for the right to fish the way they know how. Downside they kill most fish young, old, and inbetween.
Getting ticked off at them promotes the elitist fly fisher attitude. If thats what Fly fishing is about instead of sharing, then we all missed the point.
03-02-2003, 12:15 PM
Lipripper or any one else
Whats the latest on this issue ?
03-02-2003, 06:46 PM
Like all heated issues this one ran it's course.
03-03-2003, 11:28 PM
"Like all heated issues this one ran it's course."
True...to a certain degree.
Sorry, I haven't been on the computer much lately. From what I have heard the MDNR is now looking more towards not changing the reg. Too many people were questioning their data regarding fish counts and mortality. The major factor is apparently the fact that is just hasn't been long enough, under the current reg, to draw any firm conclusions. At a minimum the current reg will stand for at least this upcoming trout season.
03-04-2003, 05:54 AM
I meant with the powers that be. They come up with bright ideas that dim over time.