Michigan Guided Trout Fishing 2016

Jon's Guide Service

Northern Michigan's Premiere

Guided Fly Fishing and light tackle fishing Service 


Trout fishing 2016 in Michigan


The michigan 2014 Trout season is underway! The weather this season has lead to a later Spring with a near record winter and tons of snow, high water, and  water temps well below the past several seasons.

The local rivers are starting to drop, ice is off our waters, and things are starting to heat up for the 2016 Trout Season. Streamers and hatches of caddis and Hendrickson's, along with stone flies have been  producing a few nice fish. Warmer weather and hatches pushed weeks back by mother nature will provide some great opportunities in June for trout!

Open Dates Call Today!


Michigan Guided Summer Trout / Bass Special 

Manistee River / Grand Traverse Bay

July 14 - Sept 1 2017

5-6 hrs of fishing, all gear, flies, and tackle provided, soft drinks, coffee, snacks

$275.00         1 or 2 anglers

*Add a 3rd angler for an extra $75.00*


(231) 590 3483

Code# 2014MGSTBS


Located in South Boardman, Michigan and having remote locations in Baldwin, Michigan and Newaygo, Michigan gives us access to dozens of the Midwest's finest "Blue Ribbon Trout Streams." Many of these Blue Ribbon Trout Streams offer year round opportunities for the fly fishing angler. Fly fishing for salmon, trout, and steelhead on Michigan's famous tributaries , and smallmouth bass & carp on the flats of Grand Traverse Bay is what we do best. Jon's Guide Service is a full service, year round fly fishing guide service. Our Michigan fly fishing guide service offers instruction and guided fishing on Michigan's Manistee River, Pere Marquette River, Muskegon River & more such as the Betsie River and Platte river as well as the AuSable River! Jon's Guide Service provides fly fishing gear for trips and instruction on many of the major rivers in the State of Michigan, such as Winston, Sage, Simms, Cortland, Rio, SA. With a diverse set of guides located all over the state of Michigan, finding a guide for Western Michigan, Northern Michigan, Michigan's Upper Peninsula, or guided fly fishing on Michigan's Lake Huron and Michigan's Lake Michigan is not a problem, if booked in advance. Our fly fishing guide service and instruction are provided by FFF certified casting instructors, and guides who offer years of experience guiding Michigan rivers. Jon's Guide Service does everything it can to make your trip a fishing trip of a lifetime!


Michigan Hatch Chart


 Michigan Trout Fishing  



Michigan Guided Trout Fishing 



1).  Fishing for Spring trout in michigan.

2).   How we fish for Michigan trout in the spring.

3).  What flies should I fish for spring Trout?

4).  When & Where to fish for Trout in Michigan. 


About the Guide 

I have been a fishing guide in Michigan for over 30 years. Rivers such as the Pere Marquette, Manistee, AuSable and Betsie have been playgrounds and my office for many seasons.  FFF certified casting instructor, Orvis endorsed guide and school instructor, Head Guide of the largest outfitter east of the Rocky Mountains, and  fly shop owner have built years of experience in fishing & fly fishing Michigan waters and around the world. Join me and explore the great fishery and experience that Michigan rivers have to offer. My guide service is about providing a safe, educational experience that will be remembered for years to come. Our goal is to put you on the best fishing your day has to offer!

Guide / Owner  Capt Jon Kestner

Now booking trips for the 2017 season 

How to Book A Guide Trip

Give a call ,e-mail or text. We would be happy to talk to you about guide trip options, rivers options, fishing experience, and what experience your looking for in a guided fishing trip. Let us make your next trip one to remember for a lifetime!

Jon Kestner - Guide / Owner
5421 E. Main St.
South Boardman, MI 49680


 (231) 590 -3483



What Is The Cost?

Full Day: Cost $395.00  Guide trip for 1 or 2 people
                        8 Hrs (Meal Included - Gear Included) 


Half Day: Cost $295.00  Guide trip for 1 or 2 people
                        5 Hrs (No Meal - Gear Included)

Extra Person Rate: Extra person charge $100.00 

Summer Special: Cost $275.00  Guide trip for 1 or 2 people
                                       5 Hrs (No Meal - Gear Included) 


Michigan Fishing & River Reports:

River information


Water flow


Fishing Reports   

(Current local reports on water conditions and fishing) 

  • Manistee River -  Large tailwater river system offering Northern Michigan's largest run of Lake Michigan Steelhead.
  • Pere Marquette River - Famous midwest steelhead stream, freestone river offering great wading for spring steelhead.
  • Betsie River - Less traffic than most rivers!
  • Boardman River - walk-in trips, Urban fishery, Traverse City, MI.
  • White River - Freestone river, great spring steelhead fishing!
  • Muskegon River  - Largest steelhead run in the state, and offers great fishing well into May!

 Steelhead / Trout / Salmon / Bass / Carp

Peak Times to fish Michigan 

- Upper Manistee River Early Trout Fishing

- May & June Drake hatches on the Upper Manistee, Pere Marquette, and Muskegon Rivers

- Grand Traverse Bay Smallmouth Fishing

- Carp on the Flats of Grand Traverse Bay

- June Hex & July Mouse Fishing

- September Salmon Fishing Manistee River

- Early Oct Fall Steelhead Manistee River

- Manistee, Pere Marquette & Muskegon Rivers fall & Winter Steelhead Fishing in Nov & Dec

Michigan Guided Fishing

Drift Boat & Jet Sled Trips

-Great Lunches
-Great Fish
-Great Fishing
-Great Experience



How to Rig for Trout & Steelhead

Drift Fishing / Float Fishing / Swinging Flies

Do you know your knots?

Check out this icon for info on knots



Great interviews with great fly fishermen!



Destination Travel

All Inclusive 7 day Fishing package $1795

Non Fishing All Inclusive $995


All Inclusive Fishing 7 Days Starting at $2495



Contact us for preferred group pricing!

Jon Kestner

5421 E. Main St.

South Boardman, MI 49680

 (231) 590-3483


© Copyright  2016    Jon's Guide Service


Peak Trout Season

June marks the annual  Iso "Isonychia" (Slate Drakes on the Manistee river), the Hex "Hexaginia limbata" hatch (Pere Marquette River, Manistee River, and AuSable River), The Grey Drake  "Siphlonurus" Hatch, and great fishing with "Giant stone flies" (Pteronarcys California) on our Michigan waters. If you are interested in booking a prime date in advance for great dry fly trophy trout fishing in Michigan (open days limited) call or e-mail for more information.

Michigan Guided

Trout Fishing

Over 30 years guiding Michigan Trout


  • Manistee River
  • Pere marquette River
  • Muskegon River
Taking bookings for Summer 2015 Trout fishing!
Have a large group? Jon's Guide Service also books 7 other guides! 

Muskegon River

Trout Fishing

Newaygo, MI 

Pere Marquette River

Trout Fishing

Baldwin, MI

Spring Trout

April in the State of Michigan is the official trout opener, although many rivers and streams are open year round. Early season trout fishing can be affected by weather and water flows. Streamer fishing can produce some of the biggest fish of the season. Fish have had a long cold winter, and as water temps start to heat up, so does the fishing! Warming trends early in the season offer dry fly fishing, with hatches of stones, caddis, and Hendrickson's.

How do we fish for trout?

There are many ways to fish for trout and no better time to learn how than during the peak times. With good hatches and warmer weather around, the odds of success are larger than any other time during the year. The techniques used vary on river conditions, the number of fish in the river, and the time of the year, as well as the type of water we are fishing and the traffic on that water. Here are three ways that we  fish for spring trout.


90 % of a trouts diet is subsurface, so it only leads to fishing food sources below the surface in front of the fish. Sometimes we fish them under a float and at other times under a fly. Looking at a hatch chart for your area will lend a hand in determining what nymphs are active in a system.

Dry Fly Fishing

When we think of fly fishing this is what we think of. Dry fly fishing is awesome and very interactive with angler making presentations and the fish working the hatch. Warmer weather and normal river flows goes a long way in helping the chances of a good hatch or spinner fall. June is the best month to look for these opportunities in Michigan.


This method is a mind set! Lower numbers of hook-ups, more work, and more skill is needed, but the rewards can be great! Streamer fishing during the spring can produce some great fish, improve casting skills, and give the angler a more intensive day. This type of fishing requires covering a great amount of water and lots of casts. Some of the best Trout of the season are landed during this time period using streamers.


Gear Fishing or Light Spin Tackle for Trout

The use of spinning gear can be very effective for trout. We offer guided fishing using the following techniques.

- Center pin Fishing

- Float Fishing

- Cast and retrieve

- Drift Fishing

Flies for Spring Trout

Flies for spring Steelhead can be described in four catagories:

  • Eggs - Flies that look or imitate fish eggs.
  • Nymphs - Local aquatic insects. (Mayflies, Stone Flies, Caddis)
  • Streamers - Bait fish imitations, Salmon fry, Leeches.
  • Attractors - Bright flies, flashy, can be hot colored patterns of the above mentioned.

(See fly gallery for pics )

Brighter patterns / darker patterns and larger patterns during high water or low light can be effective. Fishing smaller patterns and matching the bio-mass of aquatic insects and natural eggs will work better during low water periods and in high sun. When fishing streamers, a rule of thumb is fish bright colors on sunny days and fish dark colors on cloudy days.


When and where should I choose to fish for michigan Trout?

Fishing any popular river, you will find plenty of fellow anglers with the same fishing fever you have. Using a guide can help to get you on fish, but will most likely not get you away from all the traffic. Fishing low light conditions will increase an angler's odds, and knowing when insects will emerge and have spinner falls puts you on the river at the right time! Fishing pressure is something that comes with the sport, but how you move around traffic and the river you choose can make or break your day. Knowing insects like to drop eggs in shallow riffle water allows an angler to post up below shallow riffles and look for bigger fish to feed in lower light. Here are a few places to look at for your next fishing adventure.

Michigan Hatch Chart





Northern Michigan Fishing Info for Local Rivers