Thursday, July 12, 2012

Reedsburg Dam Fishing Report

Reedsburg Dam with very low water levels
The hot and very dry summer has left many of the lakes around Michigan with low water levels. Reeds burg Dam and the Dead Stream Flooding are no exception. The low side of the dam is at the lowest it has been in many years. It has only rained a few times in the Houghton Lake area since spring.

Add that the winter was mild and below normal snow fall hindered the water levels after the initial runoff which came early in February/March. Water levels were very low last year due to lack of rain but this year is even worse.

What are normally good areas to fish in at this time of year have become so shallow that the vegetation has grown to the point that access is limited at best. One such area is directly across from the boat launch. The fishing there was very good in the spring but levels are so low you might be able to walk on it.

Sunset at Reedsburg Dam (Dead Stream Flooding)
With all that said, the fishing is still good, sometimes. The warm weather and low water levels are heating the water to the point of being like a heated pool. Great for swimmers and sunbathers but not so much for fishing. The very warm water keeps fish still and slows their feeding. So fishing is best in the morning after the water has had a chance to cool overnight. Also fishing in the late evening is usually good about an hour before sunset.

Small fish can usually be caught any time during the day mostly near Lilly pads or other vegetation that offers cover. Trolling can be very effective for larger fish. Since there is no real deep water at Reedsburg (especially now) try trolling near or over weed beds or reeds.

Two hook harness with plastic worm
Lately I've had success with a plastic worm on a two hook harness with a single spinner, I have two, one with a silver spinner and one with a single florescent green spinner blade and five beads. I troll with a 50 Minn Kota electric motor set at one or two if trolling into the wind. This allows me to troll for hours without draining the battery very much.

Best time: Mornings at sunrise

Best bait: A toss up but I do well with nightcrawlers, both real or plastic if trolling. The plastic stops the small ones from biting the tail and pulling the bait off the hooks.

So come on up and don't forget your bug spray and sun block. Oh yeah and a bathing suit because the water is fine.

Sunbathers taking a dip from the dam
Sunset over the Reedsburg Dam

Sunset over Dead Stream Flooding

Hope to see you up here. It's been a great summer so far...

Ken S


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  2. There is some good Blue Gill fishing both in the flooding and below the dam. However, it appears that the last few years have taken their toll on the fish populations, many, many gills have been taken in that time. I was hoping last year that it would come back but no such luck.