Fishing in Gaylord, Michigan

 

 

By now you’re aware that Otsego County is truly a water wonderland, with over 90 inland lakes and the headwaters to five major rivers.  Along with being an outstanding destination for recreational water sports, our waterways are also an angler’s dream come true.  Welcome to the heart of Fishigan. 

Maybe we don’t have the big open waters of the Great Lakes, but the sheer abundance and variety of lakes in our area make for some awesome fishing!  Choose your lake, get your gear, then plan on reelin’ them in!

Full of “hot spots,” Otsego Lake is on the radar for serious anglers.  Known for producing sturgeon, which can grow over 7 feet long and weigh up to 200 pounds, the county’s largest lake will not disappoint.  While you might not reel in a trophy sturgeon every time, the water is alive with pike, perch, walleye, crappie and bass.  And ice fishermen find Otsego Lake a great place to shanty up when the ice grows thick in the heart of Michigan’s winter

If you haven’t fished the lakes within the Pigeon River Country State Forest, it needs to go on your to-do list.  Many lakes are stocked annually, making the trout fishing excellent.  Be prepared to do some research before heading out, as you may encounter boating and bait restrictions.  The reward is well worth it though, and you’ll find yourself not only in a fisherman’s paradise, but one of the loveliest natural areas in northern Michigan.  Our printable guide to fishing includes information on a sampling of our favorite lakes in the Pigeon River Country.

 

Read 5 Things to Know About Fishing Blog

 

Michigan Trout Trails

Sure, Gaylord’s got loads of fantastic fishing lakes-they’re those big blue blurbs all over the map-but did you know the area is stocked with a heap of streams chock full of the north’s famous trout?

Headwaters for the Black, Sturgeon, Pigeon, Manistee and AuSable Rivers can all be found within our county lines.  The Michigan Trout Trails website details biologist-verified trout waters that are often lesser known.  Along with detailed descriptions and photos of each site, this DNR created page lists trout species available, regulations and many other noteworthy insights.  

Visit the Michigan Trout Trails page>>>

 

 

Request Our Lakes Brochure

 

Get Your Gear

Before dropping your line, visit Jay’s Sporting Goods just south of downtown Gaylord.  With a huge selection of fishing rods and gear, bait, knowledgeable staff and all things fishing at your fingertips, you’ll have the right equipment for an evening or week-long excursion on your favorite lake. 

 

Request Our Visitor’s Guide

 

Resources 

For information on public access sites and fishing in Otsego County, use the Printable Guide to Fishing in the Gaylord/Otsego County Area.  Also visit the DNR website for seasons, license requirements and free fishing weekend information.  

Buy your license online 
Buy your license locally

Check out these helpful pages:

Weekly Fishing Report
Michigan Fishing Guide 
Fish Stocking Database 
Fishing Seasons
Inland Lake Maps
Fish Species 

 

 

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Old 27 South
Gaylord, MI 49735

The largest lake in the Gaylord area, Otsego Lake runs along Old 27 South for approximately 5 miles
More Info

Chub Lake Rd.
Gaylord, MI 49735

This gorgeous and quiet spring fed lake feeds the mighty AuSable River
More Info

East Opal Lake Rd.
Gaylord, MI 49735

Opal Lake is known as one of the clearest, most stunning lakes in Otsego County
More Info

East Heart Lake Dr.
Waters, MI

Although smaller in size, Heart Lake reaches a depth of 117 feet straight out from the public access site.
More Info

Manuka Lake Rd.
Gaylord, MI

Shallow waters and a unique layout make Lake Manuka excellent for fishing and paddling.
More Info

Big Lake Rd.
Gaylord, MI 49735

A little closer to downtown Gaylord you will find Big Lake
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West Dixon Lake Dr.
Gaylord, MI 49735

Dixon Lake is a true gem and a favorite among locals
More Info

Bear Lake Rd.
Johannesburg, MI

Big Bear Lake State Forest Campgroupnd offers access to this peaceful, sandy-bottomed lake.
More Info

Thumb Lake Rd.
Vanderbilt, MI 49795

Sometimes called Lake Louise, this picturesque lake is located just northwest of Otsego County
More Info

Pickerel Lake Rd.
Vanderbilt, MI 49797

Camping, swimming and fishing are excellent ways to spend time at this Pigeon River Country lake.
More Info

Bradford Lake Dr.
Waters, MI

Located in Waters, Big Bradford Lake is one of the deepest lakes in our area.
More Info

MI

While on the AuSable River, you stand a good chance of seeing bald eagles and other wildlife during any season.
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MI

The Black River can also be found snaking throughout the Pigeon River Country State Forest.
More Info

MI

One of the Manistee’s most pristine stretches can be found in the 4,700-acre Deward Tract in Gaylord.
More Info

MI

The Pigeon River runs through the north-central part of northern lower Michigan, with its headwaters located just a few
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MI

The Sturgeon River is the fastest flowing in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula.
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MI

Website

Wah Wah Soo is a free use park with a sandy beach and swim area on Otsego Lake.
More Info

List of Businesses

Businesses found: 17

showing 1 through 17 of 17

AuSable River

MI
While on the AuSable River, you stand a good chance of seeing bald eagles and other wildlife during any season. More

Big Bear Lake

Bear Lake Rd.
Johannesburg, MI
Big Bear Lake State Forest Campgroupnd offers access to this peaceful, sandy-bottomed lake. More

Big Bradford Lake

Bradford Lake Dr.
Waters, MI
Located in Waters, Big Bradford Lake is one of the deepest lakes in our area. More

Big Chub Lake

Chub Lake Rd.
Gaylord, MI 49735
This gorgeous and quiet spring fed lake feeds the mighty AuSable River More

Big Lake

Big Lake Rd.
Gaylord, MI 49735
A little closer to downtown Gaylord you will find Big Lake More

Black River

MI
The Black River can also be found snaking throughout the Pigeon River Country State Forest. More

Dixon Lake

West Dixon Lake Dr.
Gaylord, MI 49735
Dixon Lake is a true gem and a favorite among locals More

Heart Lake

East Heart Lake Dr.
Waters, MI
Although smaller in size, Heart Lake reaches a depth of 117 feet straight out from the public access site. More

Lake Manuka

Manuka Lake Rd.
Gaylord, MI
Shallow waters and a unique layout make Lake Manuka excellent for fishing and paddling. More

Manistee River

MI
One of the Manistee’s most pristine stretches can be found in the 4,700-acre Deward Tract in Gaylord. More

Opal Lake

East Opal Lake Rd.
Gaylord, MI 49735
Opal Lake is known as one of the clearest, most stunning lakes in Otsego County More

Otsego Lake

Old 27 South
Gaylord, MI 49735
The largest lake in the Gaylord area, Otsego Lake runs along Old 27 South for approximately 5 miles More

Pickerel Lake

Pickerel Lake Rd.
Vanderbilt, MI 49797
Camping, swimming and fishing are excellent ways to spend time at this Pigeon River Country lake. More

Pigeon River

MI
The Pigeon River runs through the north-central part of northern lower Michigan, with its headwaters located just a few More

Sturgeon River

MI
The Sturgeon River is the fastest flowing in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula. More

Thumb Lake (Lake Louise)

Thumb Lake Rd.
Vanderbilt, MI 49795
Sometimes called Lake Louise, this picturesque lake is located just northwest of Otsego County More

Wah Wah Soo Beach

MI
Wah Wah Soo is a free use park with a sandy beach and swim area on Otsego Lake. More

showing 1 through 17 of 17
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