Best Walleye Fishing in Michigan

Walleye being held in a fisherman's hand.
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Michigan is a walleye angler’s paradise, boasting some of the best fishing opportunities for this prized species. With its diverse waterways, picturesque lakes, and thriving populations of walleye, Michigan provides an ideal setting for both seasoned anglers and those new to the sport. From the expansive waters of the Great Lakes to inland lakes and rivers, the state offers a variety of environments to pursue the elusive walleye. Whether you prefer the thrill of trolling on the open waters or the tranquility of casting along the shoreline, Michigan’s walleye fishing scene is sure to leave you hooked. Get ready to immerse yourself in the beauty of the Great Lakes State while indulging in the excitement of walleye fishing like never before.

Lake Erie

Situated in the heart of the Great Lakes region, Lake Erie is a top-tier destination for walleye fishing. Boasting an impressive walleye population, this lake offers anglers a thrilling experience with opportunities for trophy-sized catches. Its accessibility, seasonal variability, and the excitement of fishing events make Lake Erie an enticing choice for anglers of all levels.

Reasons to Walleye Fish in Lake Erie:

  • Abundance: Lake Erie is renowned for its large population of walleye, providing ample opportunities for anglers.
  • Size: The lake produces some of the biggest walleye in the region, attracting anglers seeking trophy-sized catches.
  • Accessibility: Lake Erie’s proximity and easily accessible shoreline make it a popular choice for both beginners and experienced anglers.
  • Seasonal Variability: Different seasons offer unique walleye fishing experiences, from ice fishing in winter to open water fishing in other seasons.
  • Fishing Events: Lake Erie hosts various walleye fishing tournaments, adding excitement for competitive anglers.

Recommended Gear: Baitcasting Reel, Braided Line, Flashlight, Hooks, Tackle Box, Fishing Net, Rod

Saginaw Bay

Amidst Michigan’s scenic landscapes, Saginaw Bay is a hidden treasure for walleye enthusiasts. The bay comes alive during the spring spawn, providing an action-packed fishing adventure. Sheltered waters, year-round fishing opportunities, and a welcoming local culture contribute to Saginaw Bay’s charm, making it a preferred destination for walleye seekers.

Reasons to Walleye Fish in Saginaw Bay:

  • Spring Spawn: Saginaw Bay is known for its excellent walleye fishing during the spring spawn, attracting anglers seeking action-packed fishing.
  • Sheltered Waters: The bay provides relatively sheltered waters, making it suitable for anglers of all skill levels, even in varying weather conditions.
  • Scenic Beauty: The bay’s scenic surroundings add to the overall fishing experience, making it not just about the catch but also the environment.
  • Year Round Fishing: While spring is prime time, Saginaw Bay offers year-round walleye fishing opportunities, providing consistency for enthusiasts.
  • Local Culture: The area around Saginaw Bay often celebrates its fishing culture, offering a welcoming atmosphere for anglers.

Recommended Gear: Flashlight, Sunscreen, Sunglasses, Pliers, Fishing Net, Tackle Box, Large Reel

Detroit River

Adding an urban flair to walleye fishing, the Detroit River is a unique angling destination surrounded by city life. Famous for its annual spawning run, the river attracts anglers with a variety of techniques and stunning views of the city skyline. With a diverse fishery and accessible launch points, the Detroit River offers a distinctive blend of nature and urban excitement.

Reasons to Walleye Fish in the Detroit River:

  • Spawning Run: Detroit River is famous for the annual walleye spawning run, drawing anglers from afar to participate in this exciting event.
  • Urban Fishing: The river’s location in a metropolitan area provides a unique urban fishing experience, combining city life with angling.
  • Variety of Techniques: Anglers of all skill levels can employ various techniques, including jigging and trolling, to catch walleye in the Detroit River.
  • Spectacular Views: Fishing in the Detroit River offers stunning views of the city skyline and surrounding areas, enhancing the overall experience.
  • Diverse Fisheries: Besides walleye, the river supports a diverse fishery, providing opportunities to catch other species, adding to the excitement.

Recommended Gear: Flashlight, Dry Bag, Rod Holder, Cooler, Fillet Knife, Sunglasses, Sunscreen 

Houghton Lake

As Michigan’s largest inland lake, Houghton Lake beckons anglers with its size, depth, and year-round walleye opportunities. Beyond its fishing appeal, the lake provides a family-friendly environment and hosts community events. Surrounded by natural beauty, Houghton Lake offers a tranquil setting for anglers seeking a complete walleye fishing experience.

Reasons to Walleye Fish in Houghton Lake:

  • Size and Depth: Houghton Lake’s size and depth contribute to its reputation as an excellent walleye fishing destination.
  • Year Round Opportunities: Whether it’s ice fishing in winter or open water fishing in other seasons, Houghton Lake offers year-round walleye fishing opportunities.
  • Family Friendly: The lake’s family-friendly environment makes it a great choice for anglers looking to enjoy a fishing trip with loved ones.
  • Scenic Beauty: Surrounded by forests and natural beauty, Houghton Lake provides a picturesque backdrop for anglers.
  • Community Events: The lake often hosts community events and fishing tournaments, creating a vibrant atmosphere for anglers and spectators alike.

Recommended Gear: First Aid Kit, Pliers, Paddle, Fishing Net, Hooks, Live Bait, Fillet Knife 

St. Marys River

Connecting the Great Lakes, St. Marys River is a prime walleye fishing location known for its currents and underwater structures. The river’s scenic beauty, seasonal migration patterns, and diverse recreational activities make it an ideal destination for anglers seeking both excitement and a connection with nature.

Reasons to Walleye Fish in the St. Marys River:

  • Connecting Great Lakes: As a connecting waterway between Lake Superior and Lake Huron, St. Marys River is a prime location for walleye fishing.
  • Currents and Structures: The river’s currents and aquatic structures create ideal conditions for walleye, making it a hotspot for anglers.
  • Scenic Beauty: Anglers can enjoy the scenic beauty of the river, surrounded by nature and the unique landscape of the Upper Peninsula.
  • Seasonal Migration: St. Marys River experiences seasonal walleye migrations, providing exciting opportunities for anglers during specific times of the year.
  • Recreational Activities: Beyond fishing, the river offers opportunities for various recreational activities, making it an ideal destination for a diverse outdoor experience.

Recommended Gear: Dry Bag, Fish Stringer, Pliers, Sunglasses, UV Clothing, Fishing Net, First Aid Kit 

Burt Lake

In the Michigan landscape, Burt Lake is revered for its size, depth, and the ideal habitat it provides for walleye. Anglers are drawn to its aquatic structures, promising excellent opportunities for successful catches. With panoramic views and a tranquil setting, Burt Lake offers a peaceful retreat for anglers seeking both a relaxing and rewarding walleye fishing experience.

Reasons to Walleye Fish in Burt Lake:

  • Size and Depth: Burt Lake’s size and depth contribute to its reputation as an excellent walleye fishing destination.
  • Structure and Habitat: The lake’s aquatic structures and varied habitat provide ideal conditions for walleye to thrive.
  • Panoramic Views: Anglers can enjoy panoramic views of the lake and its surroundings, enhancing the overall fishing experience.
  • Tranquil Setting: Burt Lake offers a tranquil setting, making it a peaceful destination for anglers seeking a quiet fishing retreat.
  • Fishing Events: The lake hosts fishing events and tournaments, attracting anglers looking for both recreational and competitive experiences.

Recommended Gear: Rod Holder, Bucket Seat, Cooler, Lip Gripper, Scale, Tackle Box, Sunglasses 

Lake St. Clair

Known for its diverse fishery, Lake St. Clair offers anglers more than just walleye opportunities. The lake’s shallow waters make it conducive to walleye fishing, and its accessible shorelines cater to various fishing preferences. Anglers can indulge in local cuisine and water recreation, making Lake St. Clair a destination where fishing seamlessly intertwines with leisure.

Reasons to Walleye Fish in Lake St. Clair:

  • Diverse Fishery: Lake St. Clair is known for its diverse fishery, including walleye, offering anglers the chance to target multiple species.
  • Shallow Waters: The lake’s shallow waters make it conducive to walleye fishing, especially during certain seasons.
  • Accessible Shorelines: Anglers can easily access the lake from various shorelines, making it convenient for bank fishing or launching small boats.
  • Culinary Opportunities: The area around Lake St. Clair offers culinary delights, allowing anglers to enjoy local cuisine after a day on the water.
  • Water Recreation: Beyond fishing, the lake provides opportunities for water recreation, attracting those seeking a combination of fishing and leisure.

Recommended Gear: Cooler, Fillet Knife, Sunglasses, Bucket Seat, Live Bait, Sunscreen, Fishing Gloves

Muskegon Lake

Embracing urban fishing, Muskegon Lake stands out as a destination near the city of Muskegon. With its reputation for walleye abundance, the lake provides anglers with the promise of successful catches. The scenic beauty of its harbor enhances the overall fishing ambiance, while accessible launch points and recreational amenities make Muskegon Lake a well-rounded choice for anglers.

Reasons to Walleye Fish in Muskegon Lake:

  • Urban Fishing: Muskegon Lake offers urban fishing experiences, being located near the city of Muskegon.
  • Walleye Abundance: The lake is known for its walleye abundance, providing anglers with good chances of successful catches.
  • Scenic Harbor: Anglers can enjoy the scenic beauty of the lake’s harbor, enhancing the overall fishing ambiance.
  • Accessible Launch Points: Numerous launch points around the lake make it easy for anglers to get on the water and start fishing.
  • Recreational Amenities: The lake area offers recreational amenities, allowing anglers to combine fishing trips with other outdoor activities.

Recommended Gear: Flashlight, Sunscreen, Sunglasses, Pliers, Fishing Net, Tackle Box, Large Reel

Green Bay

Green Bay, nestled within Lake Michigan, boasts a large walleye population, making it a haven for anglers seeking both quantity and quality catches. Its generally calm waters provide a pleasant fishing experience suitable for anglers of varying skill levels. The picturesque landscapes surrounding Green Bay add to the overall appeal, offering a perfect backdrop for an enjoyable walleye fishing adventure.

Reasons to Walleye Fish in Green Bay:

  • Large Walleye Population: Green Bay is home to a large walleye population, attracting anglers looking for quantity and quality catches.
  • Calm Waters: The bay’s generally calm waters provide a pleasant fishing experience, suitable for anglers of different skill levels.
  • Picturesque Landscapes: Anglers can enjoy picturesque landscapes around Green Bay, adding to the overall appeal of the fishing trip.
  • Variety of Techniques: The bay allows for a variety of walleye fishing techniques, catering to the preferences of different anglers.
  • Camping Opportunities: Green Bay’s surrounding areas offer camping opportunities, allowing anglers to extend their stay and fully immerse themselves in the fishing experience.

Recommended Gear: Baitcasting Reel, Braided Line, Flashlight, Hooks, Tackle Box, Fishing Net, Rod

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