|St. Joseph River
The St. Joseph River, located in the southwest corner of Michigan,
is perhaps the most reliable stream in Michigan on which to get
your summer steelhead fix. The state of Michigan, in partnership
with the state of Indiana, plants more than one hundred thousand
summer run steelhead a year into this classic southern farmland
river. As a result, the numbers of fish returning to the river
as adults can create quite a spectacle when they gather off the
mouths of cool spring creeks flowing into the larger main stream.
Large pods of steelhead cruise clearly visible to the fly caster.
Casting the fly to particular fish, managing the drift, and watching
the take make this fly fishing experience extraordinary.
We target St. Joseph River summer run steelhead by using western
Spey tackle and techniques, as well as single handed fly rods with
floating lines. Under certain water conditions, streamer fishing
is possible. Summer run steelhead are larger on average than the
spring run, Little Manistee River strain steelhead that we take
on the Muskegon River. In some years, St. Joseph River summer run
steelhead can average 12-14 pounds. Known for their tendency to
leap repeatedly when hooked, St. Joseph River summer runs do not
disappoint. These trout are acrobatic and chrome bright. And, of
course, the weather is not your typical, brisk, early Spring steelhead
experience; rather, sunshine and summer temperatures make shorts
and short sleeve shirts the order of the day.