December – February
Migratory Steelhead and resident Rainbow & Brown trout
Early winter finds the Muskegon river fishing well for both migratory Steelhead and resident Rainbow and Brown trout. A variety of techniques can be used to pursue these fish, from floating line & indicator rigs fished with small nymphs & egg flies, to deep water nymphing -a.k.a. chuck-n-duck- with nymphs and eggs, or swinging large streamers with sink tip or sinking lines. All produce fish, some require more casting skills than others, but all can be taught and fished, in just a few hours. As water temps drop in the colder months of winter, fish will relocate to slower pools and runs. As winter comes to a close, late February can bring with it some warmer, sunny days that trigger fish feeding and migratory fish movement. With Bald Eagles soaring overhead, Mink & Muskrat bounding up and down the rivers edge, to deer, turkey and other wildlife watching us fish and float by, winter is a beautiful time to fish big rivers like west Michigan’s Muskegon river.
Average air temperatures at this time of the year in west Michigan range from highs in mid 30’s to lows in the mid teens.