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hey i was wondering if the fishing is good around utica for steelies. i drove by vandyke and saw what it looked like some good spots. i was just asking before i spend my time snooping around down there. pm me


thanks a lot
 

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I have fished from Yates all the way down to Hayes/Utica Rd area with some degree of success. I prefer the dam down to the bar(old Hayloft)
 

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I tried yesterday for couple hours from dam downstream
no luck
seen lots of flies getting wet
did not hear (or see) of any catches yesterday
heard about an 8 pounder caught friday
the battle rages on
 

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I'm assuming he's talking about the Yates Dam at Dequindre and 23 mile road in Rochester. I'll be there today, fishing for imaginary steelhead :cwm27:
 

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Don't waste your time down in the lower river...the fish just pass through that area. The steelhead are wanting to go up near the cidermill dam, because there is good spawning gravel there and down to the bar (old Hayloft bar). Have fished the lower river and have had very little luck there and when I have hooked steelhead there it was just pure chance that I was there when one happed to pass through. Your better odds are up near the dam.

Hope this helps,

Tweek,
 

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I have spent approximately 50+ angler hours in sole pursuit of steelhead on the Clinton River and have nothing to show for it.

The one I did catch was a summertime 4" smolt on accident.

I have seen many by the dam attempting to jump (which is a beautiful sight), but have only seen ONE in all those hours actually bedding up.

This means two things:

1) I am a pi$$-poor steelhead fisherman that is also very unlucky.

2) The Clinton is not that great of a steelhead fishery.

I am by no means patting myself on the back, but I catch fish. I catch trout regularly in every river I fish. I can pull bass out of any pond or lake with just about anyone.

I fished the Manistee ONCE. One day for about 6 hours and hooked 3 steelhead. One time!!

3-1/2 days on the Clinton and I have seen one fish! One time a guy goes to me, "If you don't catch one today, you don't know how to fish!" as he was leaving in his car @ Yates.

Of course, I caught nothing.

It is very frustrating because you hear the stories and see them jumping the dam and I know people do catch them, go ahead and rip me and tell me I suck at fishing, but I am this close, this close, to never going for steelhead in there again.

I know, I know, "more river for the rest of us" right?

Pass the tissue I am done crying.

Sincerely,

A f(*^&)*(&^)^ frustrated angler!!
 

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I have heard of 2 steelies being caught there this year, jan 30 and feb 22
not the best of news,
Backtospool
pm me your address, i've got the tissue ready to mail :) LOL!
Planning on trying again soon
thus far i have 3 hours 45 minutes and 10 seconds on the river
i took off travel time to the river:)
nothing to show:sad:
Good luck to all
 

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Messed around at the Clinton last night. There were about 8 or 9 cars there when I got there around 445. I drifted flies through some holes, may have hooked one for a second. A guy showed me a picture of a gorgeous 10 pounder that his buddy apparently caught that day. Looked like a Muskegon River fish to me :16suspect

Whatever. The Clinton may have few fish but as a native West Sider, it's a good way to scratch an itch before I head home on the weekends to fish the good rivers.
 

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I started fishing at about 400pm to about 6pm yesterday. I went 0 for 2. Their in there it is just a matter of finding them. I know its not the Manistee, but at least it is 5 minutes from home!
 

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I know it's close to home.

I know it's not the Manistee.

I know they're in there.

I know I stink at fishing for them.

Let me ask you this: Do you guys "sight-fish" for them? Do you have to see them or do you just cast to likely holding places and hope? Please advise. I have been casting to "likely holds" because I have not seen ANY. Am I wasting my time?

Of course the two browns I caught Sunday were nowhere near any structure or pools. Both out in a riffle, but I know steelhead is a different ballgame.

I have been using a spinning rod with 8-10lb. test with a 4-5' 5 lb. leader.
 

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Ok, here's what do when I'm fishing the Clinton or any other river, where you can't see fish.

1. Find a good looking hole that might hold fish. This hole should be near gravel beds that will be used for spawning latter. I work the hole from the up-stream edge, making drifts close to me, then the middle and last to the far opposite side of the hole. A total of about 10-15 drifts at that point.

2. Then I take five steps down stream and repeat the same drift pattern again, 10-15 drifts close-middle-far. These drifts will cris-cross my previous drifts a little but my fly or bait is going through different lanes of current in the hole and more chance of a fish seeing my presentation. I will continue the above steps, down stream untill my drifts have fully covered the entire hole from front to back and side to side. basicly I pepper the hell out of each hole with my drifts, that way if there is a few fish in that hole, I'll have the best chance.

3. Sunny days with clear water I often find most hook ups to be near logs or riffle water in the hole opposite from were I'm standing.

4. Sunny or cloudy days with stained or dirty water will often find fish in the middle to shallow inside edges of the hole. The shallower edge of the hole will have less sediment drift and better visibility for the fish and they won't be concerned about being spotted from above because nothing can see them anyways.

5. This time of year, I like to fish the afternoons because the water will be it's warmest.

Hope this helps,

Tweek,
 

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I know it's close to home.

I know it's not the Manistee.

I know they're in there.

I know I stink at fishing for them.

Let me ask you this: Do you guys "sight-fish" for them? Do you have to see them or do you just cast to likely holding places and hope? Please advise. I have been casting to "likely holds" because I have not seen ANY. Am I wasting my time?

Of course the two browns I caught Sunday were nowhere near any structure or pools. Both out in a riffle, but I know steelhead is a different ballgame.

I have been using a spinning rod with 8-10lb. test with a 4-5' 5 lb. leader.
To answer your questions:

No I don't sight fish them because you cant see them in the holes on this river. Yes you are wasting your time. What I do is cast in likely holding areas and feel for them. If after a dozen or two casts I don't feel anything I move.

You have pretty much the same set up that I use.
 

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Thanks for the advice. I just didn't know if I was supposed to see them before casting.

I will hit it this weekend, being the glutton for punishment that I am...
 

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It's as if the steelhead are Dominik Hasek in his prime and I am Stu Grimson trying to score...

2-1/2 hrs Sunday. Water had a good greenish stain. Fished orange and nuke egg flys under a bobber, had difficutly getting the right depth but eventually got it ticking bottom.

Nothing...

Used a pencil bobber. Had trouble getting the right weight and right depth. I found the pencil bobber I was using was not enough to stay afloat with the amount of weight I needed to hit bottom. Fished likely places, but nothing.

Also threw a hot-n-tot. Nothing...

The wife said, "You are normally happy, even when you don't catch anything. What's wrong?"

I told her it is depressing to put so much time and work into something and never even get a bite.

I tip my cap to all on here, because you all have the knowhow and clearly the ability to do something I cannot.

I am done until Mid-March. Too depressing. I do enjoy the solitude, the river is beautiful right now, but no positive reinforcement at all has extinguished my desire for now...
 

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You all know the clinton doesn't fish well...why does everyone think it is some great river. You know what I find funny is this...everyone on the west side and on here protect so many rivers and the clinton gets posted on the most. the fish that do run get killed so fast its not even worth it. Whats the point of fishing for them. They get killed and killed and killed...why don't we ever release?
 

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"2-1/2 hrs Sunday." "it is depressing to put so much time"

I don't know where you come from, but 2-1/2 hrs. is not "so much time"

If it makes you feel any better, I fished 1pm-6pm on Saturday and 9am-4pm on Sunday. For all of my "time" on the water, I hooked into one 17 inch juvenile steelhead.

One of two options if it was me feeling the way you do, either enjoy being at the river, fish or no fish, or quit fishing the Clinton and fish rivers that have more fish.

The Clinton river, compared to other rivers in Michigan, is and will always be more hit or miss than most. Deal with it.
 

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I fly-fished the Muskegon all day on Saturday. Didn't bump a single fish. A lot of snow melted in to the water, lowered the water temp quite a bit, probably made the fish pretty sluggish. I guess that's just the way it goes, especially during the winter. It ain't bluegill fishin'. I'll be out there on the Clinton today in the pooring rain until dark. Do-or-die, I'm catchin' a Clinton Steelie. I've got til the end of March to do it before I'm OUTTA this part of the state. :woohoo1:
 
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