Saginaw Bay Walleye were caught six miles east of the Red Sparkplug in 20 feet of water on crawlers. Walleye were also caught four miles west of the Red Sparkplug in 18 to 22 feet of water and at Callahan Reef in 12 feet of water on crawlers. At Smith Park in Essexville, shore anglers were using crawlers to catch smallmouth bass and channel catfish. Fishing for walleye continued to be good on the east side of the bay. Fish were starting to scatter and were caught from 6 feet and out to 35+ feet of water. Anglers were still catching walleye in the slot from 12 to 14 feet and also around 17 and 18 feet. Some anglers were starting to head out deeper and target 20 to 24 feet out over the bar. Walleye were caught between Sand Point and Caseville in 20 to 25 feet, off Oak Point in 30 to 35 feet, and also out around the Charity Islands. Crawlers and body baits were both producing well.
Sebewaing Anglers reported good to excellent walleye fishing. Limits of walleye were common. Good places included the slot in 13 to 15 feet of water, north side of the bar in 20 to 23 feet of water and at buoy #1 in 26 feet of water. Both night crawler harnesses and body baits were catching fish. Good colors were purple, white and blue.
Au Gres Area Anglers reported limit catches of walleye. The best fishing was out east and north of the Charity Islands in 12 to 20 feet while trolling crawlers and flicker shad. There were also some good catches of walleye near Point Au Gres and south towards the shipwreck and all the way down near the Saganing bar in 10 to 25 feet while trolling crawlers and flicker shad. At the Pine River Access, there were a few pike, largemouth bass and crappie caught while casting spinners, body baits and still fishing minnows.
Outer Saginaw Bay
Port Austin Walleye were caught in 20 to 30 feet of water. Crawler harnesses seemed to work best. Anglers were fishing west toward Caseville, but some were caught closer to the harbor.
Fishing Tip: Understanding water temps & the impact on fishing
As Michigan’s inland lakes warm up in mid to late summer, knowledge of a water body’s temperature stratification becomes helpful for fishing. Seasonal temperature influences in lakes form different zones, and as a result, different temperature ranges and oxygen levels are associated with these layers. Knowledge of these layers or zones can lead to increased angling success.
The warm surface zone is called the epilimnion and has an abundance of oxygen. The bottom zone is called the hypolimnion and is typically cold and depleted of oxygen. The middle zone is the thermocline and the point at which warm oxygen rich top water is separated from the cold, oxygen depleted water below. The thermocline may prove to be a great depth at which to fish due to the abundance of oxygen and temperature found “in between” very warm and very cold. This ideal zone in most Michigan inland lakes typically will be between 10 to 30 feet, depending on lake size and depth. Just like us humans, fish need oxygen to breath and many don’t particularly like to be too warm or too cold.
If fishing in shallow water bodies, look for shaded areas provided by large floating vegetation, overhanging vegetation, submerged logs, or other woody debris which provides water that is a little cooler and cover, where many fish species prefer to spend their time. Also don’t forget to try fishing at night during the summer “doldrums” when water temperatures reach seasonal highs. Many fish species become active at night with relief from the daytime sun and heat.