Lake Michigan Boating Myth

A Great Man Once Said: “There is nothing to fear, but fear itself!”

One day I noticed my neighbor was getting his new 16′  deep “v”  fishing  rig ready for a fishing trip.  I asked him,“Are you going to Lake Michigan?”  He looked at me and replied, “Hell no, Lake Michigan is too rough for me!”  I asked him if he ever fished the lake before.  He answered, “No”…..  I told him that  I have been fishing for salmon on Lake Michigan with a 16 foot deep V like his for over forty years and have never had a dangerous situation of any kind. I went on to explain how terrific fishing is on the lake. When I asked him why he did not even fish the big pond on calm days, he said he was not as crazy as me. Well, there is some justice in this mixed up world of ours. A week after our conversation I went fishing out of Portage Indiana on Lake Michigan and caught two big King Salmons.   I  showed my neighbor the monsters . He asked me where I caught them…..I told him that I was crazy enough to catch the beasts fishing on the big, bad, dangerous lake! I laughed at him and walked away!

REMEMBER!  BRODY KILLED JAWS A LONG TIME AGO…..LOL!  THERE IS NOTHING DANGEROUS ABOUT FISHING  ON THE GREAT LAKES….. It is only a SUPER MYTH!  This myth has been around since boaters first started using the lakes, and has been  perpetrated by the Media,  and others that do not even fish on the big lakes, like my novice neighbor!!

Fact is; there are more 16′ foot fishing boats trolling on the Great Lakes than any other size boat.  However,  I’m not a fool!  There certainly are times that boaters should not even go near the water! Everyone knows that big bodies of water,  like the Great Lakes are extremely rough at times….. so that means people should never fish on them?  Do golfers stop golfing because lightening might take their lives? Do skiers stay home when there could be a landslide? Here is a good one! What if the NFL players stopped playing football because they might get a broken neck? I could go on and on, but I think I have made my point.

 Over the past forty years I have learned a few basic things to keep myself safe on Lake Michigan. This is most important:  Make sure you have all the safety requirements on your rig,  a backup motor in case your motor dies and some sort of device to call someone if you do get in trouble. Carry a heavy river type anchor attached to about 200 feet of a strong rope. This could keep you from drifting across the lake and also,  keep you bow in the right place in heavy water….. Then,  a few hours before your fishing trip,  check the weather for wind speed and direction. Find out how high the waves will be…..If they are predicting any more than 1-3 foot waves building to 2-4 footers, I usually take a pass, especially if they are north or northeast winds. If storms are in the area, I usually take a pass. If the predictions are one foot or less, or 1-2 footers building to 1-3 footers with  any wind direction is should be a go!  Sometimes the fish will be active even with north or east winds depending on the time of year and the water temperature. Now here is the rub, and most important. Try to stay within about 8-10 miles of shore,  and if you have a small motor, even less. Use what God gave you between your ears! Always be checking the weather with a weather band radio  while fishing. Never wait until the last minute to pack up and get the hell off the lake if a storm is in the area…..This is where boaters get in trouble!  It’s a matter of  everyday common sense! As far as actual boating accidents go, they are mostly  caused by stupid mistakes, and the fools that go to the lake to drink, do drugs and screw around (Actually these dummies are more dangerous than the lake)  Then the Media picks up on it and the lakes get a bum rap! In most cases, the truth never gets told anyway! Remember,  spin is the Media’s bread and butter! 

Indeed! There is no better fishery in America then the Great Lakes! 

 A bad day of fishing is better than a good day at work!