Houghton Lake

Discussion in 'Icefishing LP inland lakes and rivers' started by Perchy101, Jan 15, 2013.

  1. Hello All!

    I wanted to stop in and introduce myself as I'm prepping to take my 1st trip to Michigan for Ice Fishing Feb 2-6. Me and a Buddy are renting a cabin on the lake and will enjoy 3 days of non stop fishing...

    A little background about myself; I've been fishing since I can remember... And probably been Ice Fishing for nearly as long.. So I've probably been on the ice for 15 years or so... Over the years I have collected all the goodies... Nice Shanty, Flasher, Mr. Buddy Heater and good rods... I've mainly been into pan fishing (Perch/Crappie/Gills) but have ventured out into other bigger fish. It has been hit or miss.. But, a cold, windy, snowy day on the lake still beats the best day at the office! :)

    But, I do have a few questions about regulations on fishing in Michigan... I thought I saw on the DNR website that you were permitted to use up to (3) lines and (6) hooks per line. (With Tip Ups) I saw a post on here saying they used like (12) Tip Ups and jigging rods. Was that a large group fishing with tip ups?

    So, question is... How many tip ups can you use? How many rods can you use?

    Also, is there any gotchas? We will be using an ATV and already purchased the Off Road Sticker for Michigan... What else is there we should know?

    Thanks Guys! See you soon


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  2. Hi Perchy welcome to the site. You should fill out your profile so people can see where you are coming from. As far as how many lines, you are allowed 3 lines total. So 3 tip ups, or 2 tip ups and one jigging rod, or 2 jigging rods 1 tip up, or 3 jigging rods. You are allowed to have 6 hooks total, not 6 hooks per line. Hope this helps, and if I missed anything I'm sure others will chime in. Good luck on your trip, and don't forget to post a report of how you did.

  3. First of all "Welcome" to the site, there's a ton of history about HL here if you use the "search" function to research it. :)

    On the rods/lines - Yes, you are allowed 3 lines each in any combonation. Just so you dont get in trouble in regards to how to interperate this I'd highly recommend downloading the fishing guide and review it from there. Also, I'm assuming you already know you'll have to have a non-resident fishing licence? ;)

    Even the "regular" fishing spots on HL can be hit and miss, depends a lot on the weather and how much "other" activity is going on. Which part of lake are you staying at? Good choices for bait and fishing info are: Southside - Lyman's, East Side/East Bay - Korbinski's, Northeast side: Papa's near the airport. :)

    As already mentioned "Good luck on your trip, and don't forget to post a report of how you did."
  4. Thanks for the quick replies guys... I'll go over the guide again just to make sure I didn't miss anything - Really wanted to get clarification and make sure I was reading the whole regs correctly.

    I'll be coming from Columbus, Ohio. We are allowed 2 rods and 6 tip ups per person down here... So, that was why I wanted to make sure I was good.

    As far as where we are fishing, we are staying at American Oak Resort. So, main base will be out of that direction... I used the search feature for a quick second, but really wanted to clarify the rod/tip info...

    We are going the weekend after Tip up Town for that reason... Rather be pay crazy amounts of money to stay that weekend and have to deal with the "others" out there... Hopefully the lake is settled back down...

    I'll report back :) Whoever thought a sane person would take an "icecation" - LOL

    Can't wait!
  5. We've got a place in the HL area so have never stayed at AOR but Art's a great guy. We support his website for the trail reports and webcam. If you want to fish the southside weed bed your about 1.5 miles or so east of Lyman's. Lots of people will fish for gills and crappie in that area between you and Lyman's. The "Middle Grounds" is another place you can chase just about all species and is about four or so miles directly north across the lake from AOR. ;)

    The first weekend if February should be pretty quite as TUT is the last two weekends in January.

    BTW - Some of our favorite place to eat in HL are Garrett's, Shakers or B.R. Guest for Breakfast. Limberlost and Kilkare for lunch, Kilkare and Spikehorn for dinner and if you like Pizza you have to go and try Buccilli's!
  6. I just got back from Houghton Lake. There was a lot of black ice, but it was safe to walk on. As a previous post suggested, even the regular spots can be hit-or-miss. Not to snub HL, and I realize you will be there only a few days, but Higgins (ten miles north) should be frozen over by then. It is a much deeper lake (130+ft compared to 20 ft) and hosts a wider variety of fish (whitefish, trout (various species,) smelt, perch, and the occasional large pike that made it up the Cut River.

    When you do go to HL, try the middle grounds for walleye and pike. I also heard that perch were being caught by Lyman's bait shop (south end of the lake.) We fished for perch by Rite-Aid and caught nothing but dinks.

    Good luck buckeye.
  7. As Burksee stated there are some good restaurants in the area. Buccilli's is the best for pizza. Italian family owns it. Order the supreme. The Spikehorn is also really good. My in-laws live up there and those are the places we go when we eat out.
  8. any updated ice reports? i am headed up thursday night for a few days. im hoping for some safe ice to fish.....thanks
  9. thats a great post. ice fishing should be enjoyed by all. there are thousands of fish. trillions if ur democrat. lol just kidding
  10. We could spend a day at Higgins, but I gotta run it by the group that is going... I'm not driving nor is it my ATV... I think we are all just looking for some great ice... good times and catching some fish...

    I know we (they) are after some Eyes and Pike... I'm after whatever wants to bite my line.
  11. Sounds like you've had several responses on where to go but to answer another question about atv usage. Make sure you have helmets and unless you have a factory 2up machine only one allowed to ride. You may not get caught but don't take the chance and have that taint the fun your intending. Rig up a sled of some sort or a small trailer to tender others in your group out if not enough quads.
  12. You come all that way, You have to try fishing for smelt on Higgins..Fish them at night when your done at Houghton..
  13. Thanks guys!

    I'm not sure about this whole smelt fishing thing... Seems like an awful lot of work for a little prize???

  14. Man I thought the same thing for the longest time. Turned down invatations to go smelting on Higgins multiple times. Finally gave in and went. All I can say it I was hooked instantly. I've been fishing smelt for about 7 years now and I can honestly say night it is easily my second favorite Michigan behind summer fly fishing for trout. Plan a three day trip every winter with the guys, poker in the afternoon and smelt in the evening/night.

    If you do go be prepared because before you know it you will be spending $1,000 to the biggest shanty on the market, under water lights, a deep cycle marine battery, propane heater, colman lanterns, portable propane stove, and everything else needing to have a smelting paty with your friends on the ice.
  15. When we run 12 tip-ups, there are 4 people in the group. If you want to jig, yank one of the tip-ups out. Go to shore, pull the tip-up's. Have your name on them too. Good luck!

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