Fly fishing for trout has a long, proud heritage in Michigan, and our trout season opens this year on Saturday, April 30th on hundreds of rivers and streams across the state. Included among those streams is Paint Creek in southeast Michigan. Our area’s ‘Little Gem,’ Paint Creek’s sparkling waters flow from the village of Lake Orion to Rochester and is the best bet for the local fly angler. Stocked annually with over 6,000 yearling brown trout, the creek is accessible at several points along the Paint Creek Trail. Start at Tienken, Dutton Road or Silverbell and fish north. Early spring fish are being caught on small streamers and also on nymphs and scuds fished indicator style.
Remember, you’ll need an All Species fishing license if you are age seventeen or older to fish Paint Creek. Also, there are some new “Gear Restricted” rules for Paint Creek between Gunn Road and Tienken Road you need to be aware of. Get all the details in the 2011 Michigan Fishing Guide available from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR).
The April weather can be tricky with warm days and occasional windchills below freezing the next day, so be prepared for either case. Regardless of how cold the water, how raw the wind, or how hard it rains, it’s an exciting time! Around the state, avid fly-fishers are flocking to their special Meccas for opening day trout traditions!
Wayne Snyder runs the White River Fly Shop in Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World, Auburn Hills, Michigan. He is also the author of “The Golden Age,” the history of fly fishing in Michigan. www.WayneSnyder.net