Saginaw Bay rain and wind storm last weekend did not do the ice any good. There is now open water visible about a half mile off Bay City State Park. Ice quality has deteriorated and will only get worse every day this week as temperatures rise possibly into the 60’s by Thursday. It would not be unreasonable to assume any remaining ice will become honeycombed and unsafe later this week. Ice fishing here is about done and anglers should wait for open water fishing.
Saginaw River is muddy, and the water levels are rising so the ice is going fast. No one should go out on the ice! Inland walleye fishing closes this coming Friday (March 15), and it’s unclear whether the ice will break up enough to allow for boat fishing. The marinas and launch ramps may still be ice-locked most of the week, but the ice will almost certainly be unsafe for ice fishing.
Tittabawassee River boat launchs at Gordonville and Center Roads were ice-locked. These areas may break up however expect a lot of floating ice to hinder open-water fishing. There is still a lot of ice up the mainstream as well as in the lower Chippewa River that is going to break up and head downstream.
Fishing Tip: Targeting walleye at the end of ice season
Walleye are a popular target for many ice anglers, particularly as the season wears on. Pursuing these aggressive fish can be a great adventure, especially if you follow some of these tactics.
Focus on using jigs with spoons or minnows or tip-ups with live bait to see the most success. You might want to use a few tip-ups and then jig around that same area.
Think about the depth of water as well as the time of day. Walleye fishing through the ice usually begins and ends in shallow water areas with deep water more productive during the heart of the winter.
Learn more about walleye fishing during Michigan’s winter by their page at Michigan.gov/Fishing.