AuSable River Smallmouth fishing report - Aug 17th
Smallmouth action continues to be excellent on the lower Au Sable River! The slightly higher water and cooler weather has been just ideal for the day time streamer bite. Top patterns are Murdich Minnows (chart/white, grey/silver, rainbow), Great Lakes Deceivers (chart/white, black/white, yellow/olive), Phantom, Conrad Sculpin, Sheep Series Shad, Sasquatch and Fire Tiger. Floating lines are also very effective to fish small lead eyed patterns down deep with long leaders. Top patterns are Near Nuff Crayfish/Sculpin, Half & Half and lots of different Clouser Minnows. Prime time is late evening and bass will come up for flies as the bright sun starts coming off the river. Late evening floating lines with lots of different lightweight bait fish patterns does produce some of the biggest bass of the year. In low light top water is also very effective. Lots of different deer hair floating creatures will work but my favorite is to break out the hard bodied poppers. The lower Au Sable River has so many miles of great Smallmouth Bass water (50 miles) and every year produces some 5lb plus fish. There is lots of good water to fish on the Au Sable River - below Alcona, Loud, Five Channels, Cooke and Foote Dam are all great places to look for these very aggressive smallmouth bass.
Dark Hex are still going strong in the lower sections of the river and will provide some excellent dry fly action for Smallies over the next few weeks.
August 9th - Had a great time floating today with two that have put in so much time and effort into conservation on the Au Sable River. Bruce Pregler president of the Anglers of the Au Sable http://www.ausableanglers.org/ and Tom Buhr president of the Au Sable Big Water Preservation Association www.asbwpa.org/ Some good smallmouth action today!
August 4th - So many great places to fish the lower Au Sable for these beautiful Smallmouth Bass!
August 1st - Doug and John with some nice Smallmouth Bass on the Au Sable River! With all of heat this summer just a great fish to target and hard to find a more beautiful place to fly fishing than the lower Au Sable River.
Some great new Smallmouth flies that just came in from fly tier Pat Cohen. Some of best quality deer hair bugs and streamers that I have seen!!
July 19th - Ted and Tom with a huge day on the lower Au Sable River and lots of Smallmouth Bass action. Good streamer fishing throughout the afternoon and evening! Top patterns were lots of different flashy bait fish patterns but the Rattling Murdrich Minnow was by far the most productive. The last couple hours before dark, the top water action did produce the largest Smallies of the float and lots of action!
July 15th - Had some excellent action from early evening till dark today! Sink tips with large bait fish patterns did well and then the last couple hours we switched to floating lines and top water. The lower river is very low and clear right now but Smallies are very active.
July 15th - As the sun comes off the water and the light starts to a fade a bit it is prime time for top water action! Often this is when the larger bass do start to feed during major heat waves like right now.
July 12th - Matt with a nice Smallmouth on the lower Au Sable River.
July 1st - Tom with a nice Smallmouth and some good action this afternoon streamer fishing.
August 16th - Andy and Bill with a couple nice smallmouth bass on the lower Au Sable River! Had some decent action this evening and best setup was a floating line with a large light weight bait fish pattern. The top water action just before dark did let us down tonight and the Smallies were just not look at the surface to feed. The lower river should keep fishing well thru out September.
July 31st - Hot nights of late makes for good top water action right at dark on the lower Au Sable River. This big Smallies was caught swinging a mouse pattern. Fly fishing for these Smallies has been excellent of late!
July 26th - Randy with some nice Au Sable River Smallmouth Bass! Daytime streamer action with sink tips and flashy bait fish patterns. Dark hex are just getting going - good hatch tonight but spinner fall was still pretty light. Popper fishing right at dark was very good and did produce some nice bass!
Here are my two favorite Smallmouth top water poppers and both are from Umpqua. We do stock both of these in several colors and will be adding them to our online sales this week.
July 20th - The hot weather is here and the big Smallmouth of the lower Au Sable River are getting very active. So much good water to fish this time of year!
May 29th - Adam and Erik with some nice Au Sable River Smallies! Streamer fishing throughout the afternoons has been producing some very nice bass of late.
May 21st - The Au Sable Smallies were really on today to the big flies. Great Lakes Deceiver in olive/yellow was the hot fly.
August 6th - Bill and Mike with a couple of nice Au Sable River smallmouth bass. Daytime streamer fishing was a bit slow today but had pretty good action in the late evening into darkness. Top streamer today was a Phantom which is just an excellent large minnow imitation.
August 6th - Had a pretty good spinner fall of dark hex with some bass and trout up rising. When bugs thinned out we went to top water poppers just after dark and it produced some nice bass.
July 28th - Dry fly fishing for Smallmouth Bass on the Au Sable River. Excellent fishing the last few nights!
July 27th - Incredible Dark Hex spinner flight starting around 9pm. Lots of Smallies rising tonight and few big trout!
July 21st - Heavy hatch of dark hex on the lower Au Sable with lots of Smallies up and rising tonight!
July 21st - They came early this year just like all of the big hatches this year on the Au Sable. Dry fly fishing for smallmouth bass is going strong on the lower Au Sable River! Above are the two species of Hex that have been hatching of late. These are not the same bugs that hatch in June on the Au Sable River - similar but a different species of the Hexagenia. Late July and early August is the peak time for these bugs to hatch. Look for good spinner flights coming off of Foote Pond, Loud Pond and Alcona Pond. Hatches and spinner falls are typically from 8:30pm to 10pm. This is not a after dark bug like the June species. This hatch can produce some very nice rising smallmouth bass and trout. When hatch first starts swinging small woolly buggers on a floating line can be very productive. Typically best fish start rising when spinners hit the water.
July 18th - Mike with very nice dry fly caught Smallmouth Bass on the Au Sable River. Dark hex started early this year like all of the hatches. The next couple weeks should have excellent dry fishing and maybe a big trout if water cools a bit. The nice thing about the Dark Hex is they start well before dark!
June 15th - Mike with a real nice Au Sable River Smallmouth. Rainbow patterns followed by JJ Special were the hot combination today. One large streamer followed by a dropper is just a great setup for these bass.
June 11th - Tom and Tom with some nice Au Sable River Smallmouth! Murdich Minnows in rainbow colors were the hot streamer today.
the video that was shot by Robert Thompson on August
13th and it shows the jumbo smallmouth below being
caught on the Au Sable River.
August 13th - Robert Thompson with giant Smallmouth on the Au Sable River! Such a nice float today on the river with Robert and his nephew Evan. This big bass was a tag team effort by both and was all recorded on video. Will post video when all is edited. Just like with big trout on the Au Sable after dark in the summer heat is prime time with top water flies.
August 13th - Good streamer fishing this afternoon and top producers were flashy baitfish patterns. Like just about everyday the Murdich Minnow was the best streamer of the day. Top water action started when the Hex spinner started to fly but best action came with surface poppers.
This Umpqua popper has been our top producer of late. The Rio floating OutBound fly lines are ideal for casting these big poppers a long distance.
August 12th - Tom Buhr with some great Smallmouth and a nice Largemouth on the Au Sable River. Had good streamer fishing today using sink tips down deep and floating lines just below surface in the late evening. Dark hex hatch was extremely heavy tonight and that hatch is peak right now. After spinners hit the water lots of bass were up and rising (some hard to catch with so many bugs) and just after dark popper action was excellent.
Aug 5th - Had pretty good smallmouth bass fishing today in lower Au Sable! Streamers on sink tips, top water poppers and streamers on floating lines all produced some nice bass. Look for bass fishing to just keep getting better and with hot weather being forecasted next week should be good.
Aug 5th - Gene Stagner with a nice Au Sable River Smallmouth caught on Mudich Minnow.
August 4th - Mark Delaney with a big smallies on the Au Sable River. Fishing was little slow today but did find a couple good bass and a few trout.
August 3rd - Justin had some good smallmouth action with guide Jeff Boks today on the lower Au Sable. Have not seen drift boat deck used like this but seemed to work very well! Streamers and top water poppers both produced a number of nice bass today.
August 1st - Jeff and John O'Neil with a couple of nice bass. Had a nice float today with John and his son but fishing sure was not the best - smallies were just off the bite. We did find a few on streamers and top water poppers.
July 26th - Excellent Smallmouth Bass streamer fishing today! Water levels are up a bit and slightly stained from recent rains. In these conditions our Great Lakes Deceiver works very well with top colors being yellow/brown and chart/white.
July 13th - Randy Smith with a nice Smallmouth Bass on the Au Sable River. The next month should be peak action for these Smallies in the river and in the backwaters.
July is the time for Smallmouth Bass in the lower Au Sable! Here is Jeff with a great fish caught on a top water fly.
June 19th - Some big bass on the lower Au Sable that just loved our rainbow Murdich Minnows. Daytime streamer fishing for trout has slowed a bit but these fish are still very aggressive this time of year.
June 12th - Tom Buhr with nice smallmouth that crushed a Great Lakes Deceiver.
May 15th - Steve got his nice big smallmouth while streamer fishing today on the Au Sable. We were looking for some big browns but found more bass that wanted our flies.
May 9th - Larry with huge smallies on the Au Sable River.
For those looking for some excellent spring smallmouth fishing Central Indiana is great place to fly fish. Jeff Conrad and Ed Devine run a guide service on some of Indiana finest smallmouth rivers. For more info go to there web site at: www.indiana-flyfishing.com Above is Ed with a very nice smallies caught on a black Conrad Sculpin.
April 30th - Found a few good smallmouth bass today. Jeff Boks and I hit some of the slow water off the ponds in Au Sable and found some very aggressive bass chasing our streamers. This fishing will just keep getting better as the water warms. The smallies are very abundant on the Au Sable and such a good fish for the fly fisherman.
August 6th - Tom Buhr with a huge 20" Smallmouth Bass on the Au Sable River. Streamer fishing was excellent today!
August 6th - This is such a great time of year to fly fish the Au Sable River and there are so many miles of river with hardly no fishing pressure. Today the big fish were looking for big bait fish patterns. Not sure what the total count was but there were a few more in this same size range. We did have a nice hex hatch starting around 8:30pm and did get some smallies on dry flies. Bugs were not as heavy as the past few nights so this hatch is past peak I would think. We should continue with excellent river bass fishing thru the month of August.
August 5th - Brian Proffitt with a couple of nice Smallmouth Bass on the Au Sable River. Today streamer fishing was very slow but top water was very good. Starting in late evening large surface poppers were producing some very nice fish. Extremely heavy hex hatch and spinner fall starting about 8:00pm this evening. Lots of Smallies were on the rising feeding heavy till dark.
Aug 3rd - Here is a very cool site - a black bear leaving the Au Sable River! We got pretty close to him as he was crossing the river but when he hit shore he went up the hill in a flash.
Aug 3rd - A great new pattern from Umpqua Feather Merchants - Murdich Minnow. This has been are top fly this summer for smallmouth bass. This streamer has lots of flash and it has been working great just fished on a floating line.
August 2nd - A very nice day on the river today with Rodney, Charlie, Sheila and Muffy. Weekend canoe traffic did not help the afternoon fishing but action did pick up in the evening as the river quieted down. We caught three kinds of bass today - smallmouth, largemouth and rock bass.
July 30th - John O'Neil with a couple of very nice Smallmouth Bass on the lower Au Sable River. Lots of streamer action today! Two anglers landed at least 75 Smallies. They were not all huge but fish chasing our streamers all day long. The next few weeks should be a excellent time for this fishery!
July 28th - A great way to spend a hot summer night - smoking cigars and catching Smallmouth Bass! The night time bite just keeps getting better this summer and we did find a few good ones all on large poppers tonight.
July 28th - Dry fly fishing for smallmouth bass is getting going on the lower Au Sable River! Above are the two species of Hex that have been hatching of late. These are not the same bugs that hatch in June on the Au Sable River - similar but a different species of the Hexagenia. Late July and early August is the peak time for these bugs to hatch. Look for good spinner flights coming off of Foote Pond, Loud Pond and Alcona Pond. Hatches and spinner falls are typically from 8:30pm to 10pm. This is not a after dark bug like the June species. This hatch can produce some very nice rising smallmouth bass and trout. When hatch first starts swinging small woolly buggers on a floating line can be very productive. Typically best fish start rising when spinners hit the water.
July 17th - Steve Horgan with some nice Smallmouth Bass on the lower Au Sable River. Today was not a big numbers day but there were some quality fish caught. Large flashy baitfish patterns fished on long sink tip were most productive today. The daytime trip worked out very nice with pulling out just before evening thunder storms rolled through.
July 16th - Tom and Bernie with some good Smallies today! Fishing was pretty good except for three major thunder storms the interrupted our fishing. The two bass that Tom Buhr is holding were both caught at the same time while fishing a double streamer rig. It is hard to beat a JJ Special behind any big streamer.
July 15th - Some good bass fishing on the lower Au Sable this evening! That is one of our large Great Lakes Deceivers that bass just inhaled in left photo. Some top water popper action right at dark.
July 13th - Mick Kramer with a couple of great fish caught out of Jeff Boks's boat today! Good top water action on the Au Sable River for Smallmouth Bass of late. Forecast is for some hot weather later in the week which should make river bass fishing even better. For those looking for float trips for these warm water species we do have dates open this month and in early August.
July 7th - Excellent Smallmouth fishing on the Au Sable River right now! There are lots of miles of great water in the lower Au Sable that are just full of nice Smallmouth Bass. These Smallies have no problem smashing streamers even mid afternoon on a bright sunny day. Right now sculpin & crayfish patterns along with flashy baitfish patterns have been working best. Once sun comes off of river in the evenings look for good surface action on poppers and mouse patterns. Sage came out with two new bass rods and matching lines this year. I do a have one of Smallmouth rods in my boat and it has been working very nice. We do stock these rods and if anyone wants to cast one just give us a call or email.
June 8th - Matt Obermiller and Au Sable River guide Jeff Boks with some nice smallies below Alcona Dam on the Au Sable River. Warm weather of late has gotten these fish active. This is a excellent section to fish from mid June thru Aug for smallmouth bass and even a big trout now and then. Right now streamers during the day and then top water in the late evening. If you are looking for a great mid summer float with a lot of actions we do have a number dates open in my calendar and in Jeff's.
October 1st - This a excellent time to chase big smallies around the shoreline of Lake Huron. The mouth of the Au Sable is another excellent place and does produce some in the 4-5lb range this time of year. Sculpin and baitfish patterns are top producers right now.
August 9th - John O'Neil with a nice big AuSable River smallie. Lots of streamer action today! Of late hot dry weather has made for some very slow trout fishing but it has not slowed down the river smallmouth fishing. Flashy baitfish patterns were our top flies today.
August 9th - Todd Zwetzig with another nice bass on today's float. Still a bunch of dark Hex spinner just before dark and we had a few nice bass up and rishing.
August 8th - Float the very lower Au Sable (below Foote Dam) and found huge numbers! Bernie and Tom caught four different types of bass today - smallmouth (above), largemouth (below), white, and rock bass. All streamer action today. Best flies were Lite Bight Minnow, JJ Special, Alewive. This water stays warm for another month in this section and bass should remain excellent.
August 1st - Extremely hot day on the river today! We did find a few good smallmouth streamer fishing during the afternoon and evening. Heavy hatch and spinner fall of dark hex and a good number of bass were up and rising just before dark. Mike Moreau pictured above was dry fly fishing with a hex pattern and catching a number of rising bass. Then we got a little surprise - this one was not a bass but a big trout! What made it even more shocking was we were almost to Loud Pond which is very low in the system. The dark hex is a great hatch this time of year and should last for a couple more weeks!
August 1st - Tom Buhr with a beautiful Au Sable River smallie caught streamer fishing. One hot afternoon but we still got some nice fish.
July 31st - Paul Timmerick with a huge smallmouth bass on the Au Sable River. Hot summer days of late but fly fishing for smallies has still been pretty good. These big river bass do not mind feeding during bright sun. Two streamer combo was the best setup for the day. Big flashy fly upfront and natural woolly bugger as the dropper.
July 30th - Tom Buhr with a big smallies right at dark fishing top water poppers. On hot days look for good top water action when sun starts to go down.
July 29th - Au Sable River smallmouth bass that took a Hex dry fly. Good numbers of bass were up and rising just before and after dark.
July 26th - Robb Smith with a nice big smallmouth bass on the Au Sable River. Had a real good fishing today - during the day streamers and right at dark on top water poppers. Top flies were large woolly buggers in peach/white, chartreuse wolverine, grey/white deceivers, small crayfish looking woolly buggers. The late summer dark hex hatch is going strong - look for these bugs about a hour before dark.
July 26th - Tom Buhr with a big smallie caught on a top water popper. Tonight right at dark bass came to life on top water. The next couple of weeks should be the best fishing of the summer for rising bass!
July 24th - Randy Smith a real nice smallmouth bass on the lower Au Sable River. Big flashy streamers with a small crayfish colored woolly bugger dropper was the best combination today. Dark Hex are starting to hatch off the ponds which will lead to some excellent dry fly fishing for these smallies over the next couple of weeks.
July 18th - Tom Buhr with a nice smallmouth bass from backwaters of the Au Sable River. Lots of great water on the AuSable River this time of year for smallies. Today baitfish patterns were the top producers fished on sink tip. Grey/white deceiver was one number. Had a little top water action just before dark but storm ended things a little early.
July 16th - Tom Olenczuk with a nice smallmouth bass and northern pike (below). We floated the very lower Au Sable today below Foote Dam. This section is noted for lots of small bass and a few very large ones that come up from Lake Huron. Today we had some very nice fish coming to our surface poppers right at dark.
July 13th - Wayne and Marc caught a few nice smallies to go with there trout today. Right now sink tips with crayfish looking patterns are the top producers.
June 20th - Mike Sargent with a couple of huge Au Sable River smallmouth bass. Late June through early August is just the perfect time to fish the lower AuSable and its backwaters for these fish. Photo below was two bass caught at the same time! Fishing two streamers about a two feet apart is very effective. Front fly a big sculpin pattern and back fly a JJ special is just the perfect combo.
June 2nd - Kris Walley with a nice smallmouth bass on the Au Sable River below Alcona Dam. This is just a beautiful section of river with very few people, lots of smallies, and a few big trout. With bright sun and hot afternoon we had excellent streamer fishing today. Had one giant rainbow trout chase streamer in on two casts in a row but no hook up.
June 2nd - When weather gets too hot for good day time trout fishing smallmouth bass can make for some excellent fly fishing.
June 2nd - Had a few nice pike chasing our streamers done near Loud Pond. One big one followed a smallmouth to the boat. A Fin Clip in Chart/White is just the perfect pike fly.
We do have summer dates open for those looking for guided float trips. If interested in trips or any questions you can contact us via email or give us a call at 989-848-5983.
Michigan fly fishing opportunities this season include: