MICHIGAN - The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is hoping to hook Michiganders and out-of-state tourists with a new interactive map called Trout Trails, giving users access to more than 200 fishing 'hot spots.'
Suzanne Stone is the Education and Outreach Specialist in the Fisheries Division of the DNR, telling FOX 17 it's no secret Michigan holds some of the best trout fishing in the nation. For the past two years, fishery biologists all over the state have been developing and updating Trout Trails with comprehensive maps showcasing the most coveted trout fishing spots in Michigan.
"Our fisheries biologists know the water of the state better than the back of their hand," said Stone. "It’s like your best friend living in a different area is taking you to their favorite fishing spots, and that’s what we are hoping to do with Trout Trails is open up a lot of new fishing spots."
Trout Trails is a free webpage application accessible online through your phone or computer. The webpage highlights details on what kind of species you'll find, safety and regulations of each water shed, even a map to each spot. Trout season runs from April 30th until September 30th which gives anglers the chance to find a new favorite spot, according to Stone.
"And if you’re going to an area you can’t make a day trip to, we have a link to the regional visitors information so you can find out what hotels, restaurants, activities, or anything else that’s going on in the area you might be interested in," Stone said.
Glen Blackwood told FOX 17 he prefers having a secret and secluded fishing experience but he's excited about the possibility of economic growth for the state and his fishing shop, Great Lakes Fly Fishing Co. in Rockford, MI.
"Fly anglers can be very secretive but in 2016 there’s not a lot of secrets," said Blackwood. "Pure Michigan is really founded on clean, cold water. With the Pure Michigan theme, tourism is one of the greatest opportunities that we have here."