In the Ludington area the most popular areas for ice fishing are Pere Marquette Lake and Hamlin Lake.
The first ice has formed on Hamlin Lake. About six brave men were spotted fishing; a shanty was also set up on the ice. Brian, the sports writer from the Ludington Daily News, went out to the lake but didn't venture out onto the ice himself.
As usual, fishing this time of the year is slowing down. As the temperature falls, fishermen are gearing up for ice fishing. Hamlin Grocery has a wide selection of specialty tackle, including Russian diamond lures that were very hot last year. We also carry Little Atom plastic baits, Fiskas in a variety of sizes and colors, and tungsten lures which have been very popular this year. If you're heading out on Hamlin Lake, keep in mind that lake levels are currently being lowered by about 2 feet in preparation for the winter.
We are one of the participating sponsors of the upcoming Ice Fishing Tournament on January 16, 2011. Plan to stop at Hamlin Grocery for all your fishing bait and tackle needs. We'll carry tried and trusted tackle and will also be expanding our selection to include the baits and lures used by the world renowned Ice Men tournament series.
For more tournament information, see this story.
We recently had a deep thaw and rain which made slush all over the lake but, with the bitter cold temperatures, it's frozen back up again and will be very solid for the weekend. Fishermen have been reporting nice bluegill and walleye catches. Action is spotty, but fish being caught are of nice size. Mornings and evenings are the best time. With the fishing tournament this weekend, we want to remind everyone about the seminars at Ramada given by the Iceman team. Hamlin Grocery will have a table set up at Ramada Friday and Saturday evenings starting at 5pm both days. We'll be displaying the hottest fishing tackle and lures, along with our custom rods which have just arrived. To serve all your fishing needs, Hamlin Grocery will be opening at 5am this Saturday and Sunday. Bait shop will be open from 5am-10pm for the entire fishing tournamanet. Stop in for hot beverages and snacks and grab a sandwhich from our deli to take out to the lake. Good luck!
After enjoying such positive feedback and experiencing a huge turnout for their first annual Monster Pike Tournament, Pere Marquette Expeditions is again sponsoring this popular ice fishing tournament on Saturday, January 16, 2010. Over 50 shanties were on PM Lake last year at tournament time and the action was impressive. Sign up today at PM Expeditions for a fun way to win cash! Entry fee is $10 and includes Sander's hot dogs down by the river following tournament. Winner takes 50% of the money, second place gets 30% and third place, 20%. Longest fish wins, and in case of a tie, weight will be the determining factor. All DNR rules apply. For more information, contact Pere Marquette Expeditions at (231) 845-7285.
According to some of the 50 fishermen stopping into Hamlin Grocery this morning, there are three inches of hard, clear ice on the South Bayou. Fishing is brisk in the afternoon. Just off the shore of Wilson Hill Park on Upper Hamlin Lake, we're getting reports of good dawn and dusk fishing on 5-7 inches of solid ice. Quads and snowmobiles are running on the lake. A few bluegill are being caught with wax worms and spikes. Tequila Sunrise is the hot color.
Not much fishing going on in Hamlin Lake. Sorry to say most of the activity on the lake is duck hunting rather than fishing. Saturday afternoon anglers had been out fishing for walleye but caught a few nice pike instead. Word from the local fishermen is that they are catching steelhead in the Pere Marquette and Mansitee Rivers. We'll keep you posted on any activity, but this time of year, fishing is usually slow. Our bait shop is gearing up for ice fishing and the big tournament end of January. We hope all the fishing enthusiasts will take part in this fun activity. Meanwhile, Hamlin Lake levels are currently in the process of being lowered in preparation for winter. (Hamlin is a man-made lake and water levels are controlled by removing boards in the dam at the Ludington State Park.)
We are one of the participating sponsors of the upcoming Ice Fishing Tournament on January 31, 2010. Plan to stop at Hamlin Grocery for all your fishing bait and tackle needs. We'll carry tried and trusted tackle and will also be expanding our selection to include the baits and lures used by the world renowned Ice Men tournament series.
For more tournament information, see this story.
We've had about 2-3 dozen men in the store today who have been fishing Upper Hamlin near Wilson Hill Park. They report that they're catching 8-10" bluegills, though they aren't limiting out. Fishing is reported to be better in the morning.
Fishing still isn't back in full force. Guys were out yesterday, but didn't limit out. The past three days have been slow on the lake, but yesterday could be the start of a turnaround. Blue gill were hitting on orange jigs, wax worms and spikes. There's very little spearing action, no walleye reports from over the weekend. The lake is still muddy. Guys with cameras just two feet off the bottom can't see anything yet. Cars are parking on the ice now on Upper Hamlin Lake, but we don't encourage it. Check out the rules for parking on ice and make sure that you don't damage the ice on your way out. DNR and authorities are out in full force, especially on the weekends.
The ice is better! A combination of the warm-up with rain, followed by no snow, followed by very cold temperatures has made the ice much better.
Reports from Upper Hamlin are that anglers are still catching some nice Gills off of Wilson Hill Park.
Fisherman are still fishing both the South Bayou and North Bayou on Lower Hamlin Lake. But Now, anglers are also taking their shanties out over the drop off on the east side of Lower Hamlin. I have had some pretty good reports on the Walleye fishing out there.
Reports from the South Bayou of Lower Hamlin are that the anglers are catching small pan fish and working hard for a mess of nice gills.
Reports from the North Bayou, where anglers are typically spearing Pike and Musky in January, are that some larger pike are still visiting the area. One angler got several keepers. As the water continues to clear after the rain, it should get better.
As soon as I hear more reports I will let you know.
Good Luck Fishing!
As of this posting at 3:45pm, we've had about four dozen ice fishermen in for bait today, most buying grubs for panfish. Early reports (around the lunch hour) indicated that it was another slow morning with a few nice bluegills caught. We're hoping for a change in fishing with the cooler temps and snow within the next week. Will keep site posted. Hot colors sold today: purple, pink and any glow. DJ Lures are in heavy demand. Currently we have limited colors available, but expecting a large shipment soon. We also carry a large selection of Hali jigs, Got-Cha bobbers, and new to the area--hand made Got-Cha ice flies. Spearing is slow now and the water is still murky. Be sure to plan a fishing trip to Hamlin Lake on February 7, 2009 for the second annual Walk on Water ice fishing tournament. Over $3500 in prizes will be given away. Give us a call or drop in at Hamlin Grocery for details.
We've had about 20 guys in the store so far today, most fishing on Upper Hamlin Lake, some on Indian Pete Bayou (Upper Hamlin). Reports are that the ice is good. They are catching lots of bluegill, many up to the limits, though they have to put in time on the ice to limit out. Mornings are best, evenings are okay, though a bit slower than mornings, not much happening in the afternoon. Last Saturday, the fishing was exceptional, but that was before the freezing rain set in on Sunday. Currently, there are reports of several groups of men who have been successful with walleye, but they won't tell where the action is. Some say they've seen guys walking out toward the Ludington State Park and I suspect that may be where the walleye are biting. Our store's most popular lures for panfish are spikes, waxworms and mousies. Teardrops are big sellers and we are getting in new shipments daily. Hot teardrops colors are chartreuse, yellows and glows. Pinks and purples are also quickly becoming popular. Check back on this website for further updates, or feel free to call me at Hamlin Grocery, (231) 843-2058 anytime for a report.
Looks Good. Be careful on the way out and use your spud to check ahead of you, but conditions reported are favorable at 3-8 inches. Guys are taking their limit of Bluegill off Wilson Hill Park and there are some nice Walleye catches each day - but the guys won't tell where the fish are biting. All bayous are being fished and catches are good at Indian Pete and North Bayou. Sad to say reports for the upcoming weekend are warmer temps - we'll continue to watch the ice.
The bayous appear to have 3-5 inches of ice on them. They are catching Blue Gill on Upper Hamlin, but they are small. Be careful on the ice, thin in some spots. At Wilson Hill Park the ice is poor and very thin at the shoreline. There is a pressure crack down the middle. The fishing is poor. We have wax worms, spikes and moussies. If the weather continues we will have live bait Thursday, Dec 13.