The River

The Muskegon River is the second longest river in Michigan and main stream runs over 215 miles from the headwaters to Lake Michigan and drains an area of 2,350 square miles in central Michigan.

For the trout, salmon and steelhead angler, the 15-miles of river from Croton Dam to Henning County Park boasts some of the best tail-water fishing opportunity and access in the midwest.

From beastly resident and lake run brown trout, to rod-bending salmon and steelhead trophies, the Muskegon River is four-season fishery (as long as water remain open).   When temperatures rise during peak of summer months, river smallmouth action heats up — providing explosive fishing until temperatures cool and migratory fish arrive in the fall.

Prior to “run of river” regulations, the Muskegon River was know as epic caddis water.  While caddis are still a staple insect on the river, consistent stream flow rates have fostered an ever increasing population of mayflies. From sulfurs and olives to isonychia and the famed gray drakes, the Muskegon River provides classic, match-the-hatch angling on a world-class level.

The Muskegon River is big, western-style water that is flat-bottomed boat friendly.  From drift boats to sleds and johnboats, a number of improved boat launches offer easy access for watercraft anglers.   While jet motors are preferred, the cautious pilot can navigate the river with a prop-motor during normal flows.  For tips and recommendations, stop by the shop for maps and access information.  We’ll do our best to help you get on and off the water — including details for local car-spotting and boat rental services.

Despite the size and boat-friendly nature of the river, there are a number of areas along the river that offer wading access. Again, stop by the shop for details and assistance on this topic.

While there are limitless possibilities for the freelance angler on the river, like any river, the Muskegon River presents all the challenges that make angling a respectable pursuit.  A number of guide services operate on the river and can help reduce the learning curve of our fishery — whether you are chasing resident or migratory fish.

As always, we strive to be number one resource of information and champion our passion for the Muskegon River and all it has to offer to make your best days on the river even better.