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Salmon Enter Michigan Streams For Annual Spawning Ritual

Local Fisherman Catches Salmon in Two Different Michigan Rivers on Same Day

September 5, 2003       Leave a Comment
By: O. J. Cunningham

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Tim Roller (Left) and Mark Desanto with a Big Manistee King Salmon
Mark DeSanto with Pere Marquette trophy Chinook

There's an old saying . . . "A bad day fishing beats a good day working."

Mark DeSanto made the best a late summer day last week - DeSanto had a good day fishing -- on two different Michigan rivers in the same day.

DeSanto, a Bay City/Essexville builder and an Orvis-endorsed guide on the Pere Marquette River, picked a late-August day to check out the early Chinook Salmon fishing on the West side of the state.

DeSanto, who normally guides out the Pere Marquette Lodge in Baldwin, started early on the Big Manistee River (North of Wellston) where he spent the morning with Ultimate Outfitter's Tim Roller. Roller, also a Bay City native and a Handy High graduate, is a full time Manistee River Guide.

Roller and DeSanto cruised the Manistee and found what Roller called "a fair number of Chinook for this early in the season." The two guides hooked a number of Chinook but only landed one during the morning session. "The fish are just in from Lake Michigan," Roller said. "We're using ten-pound test tippet on these monsters," Roller laughed. "We're not landing very many."

In the afternoon, DeSanto teamed up with a different group of fisherman at Hiawatha Lodge in Baldwin for a half-day trip down the Pere Marquette.

"We saw a lot of Chinook in a mid-section of the Pere Marquette," DeSanto said. DeSanto went on to say that since the Pere Marquette is so much smaller than the Manistee, hooking and landing a fresh-run Chinook salmon in August is a rarity. "There's just so much structure and wood in the river," DeSanto said. "The fish are fresh and it's difficult to get them to the net."

The Fall Michigan Chinook salmon run generally peaks around mid-September on the West Side of Michigan and a bit later on the Lake Huron side. Salmon fishing in the spawning rivers is usually good into mid-October.

To contact DeSanto or Roller for guided fishing trips, Click Here.

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O. J. Cunningham

O. J. Cunningham is the Publisher of Cunningham previously published Sports Page & Bay City Enterprise. He is the President/CEO of OJ Advertising, Inc.

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