Michigan Department of Natural Resources reports dangerous ice conditions. Also tips on fishing for walleye, nothern pike and panfish this time of year.

Ice fishing
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Even though temperatures are dropping at night, warm temperatures during the day coupled with rain are not helping ice conditions. Constant thawing and refreezing are producing honeycomb ice which is not safe.  Use extreme caution if you plan to get out and fish.

Michigan Department of Natural Resources warns to stay off the deeper lakes and fish in shallow waters only. Don’t venture out on lakes that you are not familiar with. It pays to know depths, where drop-offs are and the location of any inlets or outlets.  River ice is no longer safe.

The warmer weather did bring out more hopefuls with those fishing spawn, crank baits or wax worms taking steelhead below the Allegan Dam in the Kalamazoo River.

Anglers are doing well for steelhead downstream of the Berrien Springs Dam and walleye were caught further upstream.

Fluctuating water leverls caused by rain, run-off and moving ice require attention if you're heading to Grand Rapids. Steelhead are being caught near the 6th Street bridge and panfish are being taken backstream.

Fishing Tip: Fishing for walleye, northern pike and panfish this time of year

Although many bodies of water aren’t producing the type of ice many winter anglers would like to see there are still numerous tactics they can implement to experience great walleye, northern pike and panfish fishing when they do get out there.

  1. Walleye: Look for the right areas within a lake where you can find decent sized fish. Suggested locations include turns, big changes in depth, humps or other places walleyes like to sit tight. Also remember the critical periods of time when walleye are best fished: early and late in the day.
  2. Northern Pike: Something to remember is that most of these fish are hiding in weedy areas where they can take cover, yet still find ample food sources. Often times these spots will consist of bays with access to deep water.
  3. Panfish: These fish typically live just about anywhere so you should work the entire water column when you head out. For those in shallow water, they’ll typically feed for short periods of time in the very early morning and late in the day.


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