Traverse City Tourism
101 West Grandview Parkway
Traverse City, MI 49684
T: 231-947-1120 or 1-800-872-8377 | F: 231-947-2621
Traverse City "Greatest Midwest Town"
Discover why Midwest Living readers voted Traverse City the “Greatest Midwest Town,” why Fodor’s Travel listed it among America's 10 Best Small Towns and why Travel + Leisure called it one of America’s Most Romantic Towns!
With over 150 inland lakes and hundreds of miles of Lake Michigan shoreline – including the majestic Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore – Traverse City offers visitors limitless opportunities for boating, sailing, paddling, and swimming. There are miles of hiking and cycling trails, blue-ribbon trout streams, and more than 20 golf courses with inspiring views and striking configurations.
Anglers know that spring is a magical time to fish in the Traverse City area. It begins early: in March, when the first long lovely steelhead begin making their spring run upriver. Bass fishermen love to get a head start on spring fishing in April, which is also the time when pike and walleye fishing opens on the area's inland lakes -- and the long-awaited opener of trout season follows soon in May.
But spring is also the time when other fish -- bluegill, crappie and yellow perch tend to linger in the shallows on our inland lakes. Best of all, there's still not a lot of fishing pressure on those lakes and streams.
"Between May and October, there is no consistently better place to be fishing in America than Traverse City, Michigan. Diversity is the key: Lake Michigan with salmon and steelhead; Grand Traverse Bay with some of the best smallmouth pockets and carp flats in America; and more rivers and natural lakes filled with trout, bass, and panfish than you can begin to touch in one season."-- Field & Stream
Need we say more? All right: two words. Hex Hatch. By the middle of June, when those little mayflies begin to hatch out, the ten blue-ribbon trout streams around Traverse City become one of the most exciting fly-fishing regions in the world. Coincidentally, that's when the bass fishing really starts to pick up in the Bay and the larger inland lakes!
Fall is prime fishing season in Traverse City! As the water begins to cool, our fish get more active and start feeding hungrily to fatten themselves up for the winter. That translates into lots of fishing excitement here.
The big event is the annual Pacific salmon run, when thousands of enormous Chinook and Coho salmon make their way upriver. Fall is also a great time to catch big walleye, smallmouth and rainbows, especially in the area's many inland lakes.
Traverse City Fishing in Winter
Winter doesn't end Traverse City's fishing opportunities -- it just changes them! The fish are still out there, and in early winter they're livelier than ever. Massive steelhead can be found in the area's rivers and can be caught from the riverbank, but even fly-fishing for trout is an option for much of the winter.
As soon as the ice begins to thicken on our local lakes, anglers head out onto that "hard water" with their shanties and tip-ups to enjoy the traditional Up North pastime of ice fishing.
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