2018-08-23 / Outdoors

Marina fishing draws attention for Leelanau harbor-masters

by Grant McPherson
of the Enterprise staff


DICK ENSRUDE, right, and his friend Lois, left, stand with Bob Smith, middle, after catching this huge male king salmon aboard the Mariah charter on Lake Michigan. Photo courtesy of Bob Smith DICK ENSRUDE, right, and his friend Lois, left, stand with Bob Smith, middle, after catching this huge male king salmon aboard the Mariah charter on Lake Michigan. Photo courtesy of Bob Smith Fishing off the docks can be just as fun as charter fishing.

Just ask Northport Marina harbormaster Marcus Stowe, who sees quite a few people out on the docks fishing in the mornings in Northport.

“Marine fishing is popular because it is easier,” he said. “In the beginning of the summer, the people who came out to the marina were just catching some perch.

“I have also seen people catch a few walleye out on the docks.”

Recently, Stowe has seen more lake trout and perch then any other fish in the Northport marina. Leelanau County has four marinas where people can be found fishing off the docks. They are located in Elmwood Township, Suttons Bay, Leland Harbor and Northport.

“There wasn’t that many people out there today (Monday),” he said. “Just outside the marina is where most people are finding a lot of perch, smallmouths and lake trout.”

In other towns, such as Suttons Bay, people aren’t allowed to be fishing out in the marina. With the amount of boats trying to maneuver throughout the marina, harbor-master Edie Alysworth doesn’t want fishermen on the docks.

“We don’t allow people to fish in the marina,” Alysworth said. “We have too many boats that come through for people to be fishing there.”

According to the Leland Harbor website, fishing is allowed in the marina, as Manitou Passage and Leland are recognized as one the best fishing ports in Michigan.

Leland harbor is a full-service marina, and the harbor is filled with boats, so the website also warns any fisherman to be careful of their surroundings when fishing in the marina.

Elmwood Township marina is one of the busiest and prides itself on safety, cleanliness and a friendly staff according to Harbor-master Pete Moon.

Fishing is allowed in the marina, but once again people are advised to be careful, as the marina is one of the busiest for boat launches on Grand Traverse Bay.

Elwood marina is on West Grand Traverse Bay in Elmwood, and has a fully staffed group that is willing to help.

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