Saturday, April 23, 2016

New link to my fishing reports

I did not retire or disappear... As a proud member of the Feenstra Guide Service Team I am simply posting my fishing reports to the following link.

http://feenstraoutdoors.com/wordpress/report/

Thanks! -Z

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Special DNR meeting - UPDATED

Fellow Anglers,

This is a quick follow up to my previous post as I had Scotts email address wrong by one letter. I want to make sure your voice is heard so if you sent him an email please forward it again to the correct address which is heintzelmans@michigan.gov

I had missed adding the "s" on his last name in my previous post... I apologize.

Here is a modified and more informative version of my last post stating the issue at hand with the corrected email address.
I attended a special meeting held by Michigan DNR Monday night to discuss some issues on the table. I believe we can influence the decisions being made by DNR if we put some effort into this. The last place in the world I wanted to be last night was the DNR meeting, I left very upset to say the least. I do feel we need to let our voices be heard though. I thought Scott Heintzelman (Unit Manager for Central Lake Michigan DNR) did a pretty good job allowing everyone’s voice to be heard. As an angler/guide that voiced my opinion that chumming should be banned completely and that the creel limit for steelhead should be 1 per day I was outnumbered. Scott would like to get a better idea of what the public feels about the 3 issues by email if you can take the time to send him an email I really think you should. His email is heintzelmans@michigan.gov

He mentioned that the latest Muskegon River studies by DNR on such issues are more than 10 years old and they’re still basing rules off that. You and I know it is a completely different fishery than it was 10 years ago. Chumming and other angling techniques have changed things. Many of the anglers and guides that once used "match the hatch" skills for catching steelhead have taken the easy approach and are now chumming with salmon or steelhead eggs and then fishing trout beads through the chum line (creating their own 'hatch'). It is extremely effective as it changes the fishes behavior by creating an artificial feeding frenzy. In my opinion (which is shared by most swung fly anglers that I've talked with), the fish react by only being keyed in on egg patterns after being chummed, just as trout would during a blanket hatch of insects. This benefits the chummer greatly but hurts most other anglers chances at our beloved gamefish.

The three issues he wants feedback on are.

1. Should they allow a delayed release on bass for tournament fishing... meaning all the bass caught end up released at the weigh in spot instead of released immediately where they were caught. This can impact spawning for sure, not to mention relocating bass instead of having them spread out more naturally.

2. Should the steelhead creel limit be changed from 3 per angler to 2 or 1 per angler.

3. Should chumming be a free for all or limited to 1 qt per angler per day. A ban on chumming was not one of the multiple choice answers but he said it’s not off the table if enough opinion is voiced.

Thanks in advance for taking the time to let your voice be heard... please feel free to share as well.

-Z

Last nights DNR meeting

Fellow Anglers,

I attended a special meeting held by Michigan DNR last night to discuss some issues on the table. I believe we can influence the decisions being made by DNR if we put some effort into this. The last place in the world I wanted to be last night was the DNR meeting, I left very upset to say the least. I do feel we need to let our voices be heard though. I thought Scott Heintzelman (Unit Manager for Central Lake Michigan DNR) did a pretty good job allowing everyone’s voice to be heard. As an angler/guide that voiced my opinion that chumming should be banned completely and that the creel limit for steelhead should be 1 per day I was outnumbered. Scott would like to get a better idea of what the public feels about the 3 issues by email if you can take the time to send him an email I really think you should. His email is heintzelmans@michigan.gov

He admitted that the latest Muskegon River studies by DNR are more than 10 years old and they’re still basing rules off that. You and I know it is a completely different fishery than it was 10 years ago. Chumming and angling pressure has changed things.

The three issues he wants feedback on are.

1. Should they allow a delayed release on bass for tournament fishing... meaning all the bass caught end up released at the weigh in spot instead of released immediately where they were caught. This can impact spawning for sure, not to mention relocating bass instead of having them spread out more naturally.

2. Should the steelhead creel limit be changed from 3 per angler to 2 or 1 per angler.

3. Should chumming be a free for all or limited to 1 qt per angler per day. A ban on chumming was not one of the multiple choice answers but he said it’s not off the table if enough opinion is voiced.

Thanks in advance for taking the time to let your voice be heard... please feel free to share as well.

-Z

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Bassin'

Friends,

Sorry for my lack of up to date fishing reports, I've been posting most stuff to facebook instead lately because it's faster, easier and life is just busy. I'm so excited that it's Bass fishing time again. July through September are some of my favorite months because I simply love Topwater Bassin'.
If you are on Facebook please send me a friend request if you are interested in keeping up with my posts. Just search for Matt Z Zudweg... I'm the only one.

Here's a few recent photos. I have numerous dates available for summertime bass fishing. Feel free to call or text me at 231-206-7660 or email matt@mattzudweg.com if you want to get out. Time is short on these fun trips!













Friday, January 30, 2015

Catching "Boss Hogg"

What will it take to catch "Boss Hogg" this Bass Season?

It's a question I ponder often when thinking about the coming bass season... even though the season is still far off as I write this. Boss Hogg is what I affectionately call a smallmouth bass that's over 6 pounds... I catch a number of 5 pounders each season but The Boss has eluded me for some time. I found some new water at the end of last season that fished amazing and my confidence is higher than ever that Boss Hogg lives there.

For the past 5 years or so, my personal fishing trips and nearly all of my guide trips for bass have primarily been focussed on fishing topwater poppers... especially Zudbubbler's, and for good reason. Sure, if you're after numbers of bass, a small streamer or crayfish pattern is tough to beat and occasionally gets a dandy one but there is an obvious trend when I fish with my buddies (and I'm sure they won't mind me telling) that the biggest fish of the day nearly always come to poppers. There's just something about that obnoxious frog clumsily swimming through their living room that is too much for the big guys to ignore.

Allow me to digress a moment... as a kid, there was only one TV show that I could NOT miss, I even recorded the episode's with my tape recorder (this was before the VCR)... it was "The Dukes of Hazzard". You might think I was just in love with Daisy Duke, but that was not the case. My affections were much more focussed on the "General Lee"... that Hemi-Orange 69' Charger with confederate flag on the roof and "01" on the doors. It's funny, even now in my mid 40's I have dreams nearly once a week that I am the proud owner of  "The General" and who knows, that day may come.

Anyway, back to fishing. As I was thinking recently about catching Boss Hogg, my mind went to the  TV show and how "Boss Hogg" (the character who played the greedy, unethical commissioner of Hazzard County, and arch enemy of the Dukes) was always trying to get them Duke Boys and that General Lee... he'd do nearly anything to "catch em". You can probably already see where I'm going with this so let me get right to my thought process. What is the obvious thing that's going to get Boss Hogg to explode on the scene and put the hammer down this season? The Duke Boys of course... and they'll be the one's in the General Lee trying to make a fast getaway.

So here's a photo of my latest loud popping obnoxious bass popper. "The General Lee"...  and it's kickin' up dirt trying to get away from The Boss. This may be the only time that I've ever hoped The General doesn't "get away".




Thursday, January 29, 2015

Brack Hill Tackle - Rod #108

I've never been the kind of person that felt the need to make a "bucket list", but if I were, one of the things on the list would be to have a custom split bamboo rod made for me by a skilled rod maker. One of my guide clients who has become more of a friend than a "client" happens to fit that bill.
Lou Burhart owns Brack Hill Tackle and he specializes in heirloom quality bamboo rods... some of the finest I've seen. Lou made me an offer I couldn't refuse last fall so I pulled the trigger and gave him the go ahead. Much to my delight, he began working on it pretty quickly and was posting progress photos on his Facebook page often, which I thoroughly enjoyed.
Last night I met with Lou and some other client friends for dinner in Ypsilanti before I was to present a tying clinic for Schultz Outfitters "Barflies" night. Lou presented the finished rod to me before dinner and I briefly unpacked it to admire his artwork, looking forward to getting it home so I could admire it even closer. He even put together a bag of pieces and parts of all stages of its progression... so cool!
Anyway, if I ever get that urge to make a bucket list I can already check this one off. The craftsmanship is unbelievable and I imagine this will be one of the few things that will be passed down to my children and grandchildren for generations to come.
Thank you Lou for making something so special, I promise it will be cherished!

Here are some of the progression photos for your enjoyment.

















































Friday, November 21, 2014

2014 Fall Steelhead Report

Incase you're wondering if I quit posting fishing reports, I have to tell you that I haven't quit... just felt too busy this fall to make a daily or even weekly report. My life seems too busy sometimes and I feel the need to purposely not do some things in order to keep myself sane. I'm sure you know the feeling.

Anyway, this fall has been interesting. The salmon run was pretty lame and they certainly didn't populate the whole river as in some years. They were plentiful in about a half dozen places so as long as I could squeeze in we had great fishing... although I could have used a change in scenery for the 3 weeks of salmon:)

Our Steelhead run started slow and as of now really hasn't picked up a ton. It seemed to be one to four hook ups a day were the norm this fall and quite a few days the fish were biting at the fly well but missing the hook. We lost a number of great fish while fighting them too... a good reminder to land them as soon as possible so the hook doesn't loosen up too much before getting the fish to the net.
All in all it seems like a tougher fall... which means next fall might be a bonanza!

Here are a few recent photo's.

Cory with his first swung fly SH! Wicked Leech.


Dick with a great SH that clobbered a Sculpin.


Drew with a fine SH.

and another....

and another....

I know, it looks like Drew had a banner day, but this was over a 3 day period:)
Great job Drew!

John with his first SH! Sculpin.


Karen with a trophy brown. Wicked leech.

Lou prooves that Pike like the Wicked Leech too.

My beloved 4Runner after a head on collision on my way to pick up clients. Truck totalled, boat damaged but she still floats.... needs a new paint job though. Me, still walking... and thanking God!

Neal with his first SH on a swung fly! Flux Capacitor.